Scandal Episode 21 Review

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I know, it wasn’t going to be a flowery reunion between everyone, but all the undercurrents of tension and future forebodings of bad are making me tremble. Will Eun Joong ever get his smile back?

The cat’s finally out of the bad because Jang Tae Ha finds out Eun Joong is his son. Unfortunately, the realization comes a little too late-just after he’s shot him. Talk about bad timing.

But the best part is that even as the stakes come out and heartbreak lurks around each and every corner, the game is going up and we’re finding out that we’ve yet to see Jang Tae Ha’s worst. And dude, does it make you shudder!

Hwa Young begs Man Bok-who’s listening to the whole conversation play out between father and son, to call Tae Ha and ask him to stop but the sound of a bullet sends everyone reeling. Eun Joong is wide-eyed with disbelief, even as the wound registers and he falls. Myeong Gun, having arrived in time to see his son be shot before his eyes, cradles him close and calls out to him again and again. And as Tae Ha stands there and gloats to him, Myeong Gun reveals the truth.

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Tae Ha can’t believe it and one look at Eun Joong’s scar on the foot is proof and suddenly, he’s on all fours, approaching Eun Joong and calling his name. But then his hands get stained with Eun Joong’s blood and he stares at it, horrified at the realization of what he’s done.

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Alone with his grief, he keeps asking himself what he’d do if the blood on his hands is really his son’s blood. Joo ha listens in stunned horror. Over and over Tae Ha stares at his hands and mutters a denial.

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At the hospital, Hwa Young unleashes her anger at Myeong Gun by telling him to go and die alone, but then retracts her statement, saying he doesn’t have the right to die either. All the while, Man Bok watches.

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Although Eun Joong recovers from the wound and is sent home to rest, he doesn’t speak a word to anyone-the doctors citing he probably has aphasia. So Young begs him to speak, to say her name, to scold her, to do anything. She tells him his life isn’t only his, but hers and her father’s too and begs him to quit the dangerous police work. It’s heartbreaking because you realize that is the very philosophy Eun Joong lived with, to this day, but now his whole faith in his father is shattered and he doesn’t know how to react. The way he jerks away his father’s touch is proof enough of his changed thoughts.

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Before anyone can realize what he’s up to, Eun Joong quietly packs a bag and leaves the house. As soon as he exits the gate, he instinctively reaches out to straighten his father’s name card there, but pulls his hand back and walks away. Watching him leave is Hwa Young, who immediately rushes to urge him to rest but he walks away from her too. And the expression of despair he wears then… *cries*

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Jang Tae Ha is still in his dazed state, trying to come to terms with the reality around him. Man Bok comes to him, begging him to make a decision but tells him that all he’s ever known is this family, and he desperately wants to be the son he was to him, citing that he’d not do a thing differently even if they were given a second chance. Tae Ha tells him there’s no need to kneel, but instructs him to call him Chairman from now on, since he will bring back his real son now.

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Joo Ha, ever the smart girl, realizes Hwa Young purposely brought Man Bok to the house even though he wasn’t her real son and rails at her for carrying on the lie this far. “Not even knowing he was my younger brother, I liked him! If he were to ask me to date him, I would have accepted!” She cries.

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Listening in, and turning a steely heart towards Hwa Young is Jang Tae Ha. What sets Tae Ha even more on fire is getting confirmation that Eun Joong is his son and Jok Pal eggs Tae Ha on, saying this solves all his problems since knowing Tae Ha is his real father, Eun Joong will not go against him.

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When he confronts her about it, she owns up to it, letting out all the anger she’s held up inside for years about everything and he wonders if she meant to take revenge on him like that.

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On pins and needles, Myeong Gun constantly waits for Eun Joong to return. Jang Tae Ha musters up the nerve to come and face Eun Joong, but runs into Ah Mi. Recognizing her, he offers her an apartment in exchange for not suing him, and then asks after Eun Joong, bringing out the gifts he’s brought for him. Enraged, she takes a bag of waste lying nearby and dumps it on him.

“My husband was someone’s precious son. Ha Eun Joong was also someone’s precious son when you shot him. Just like how your son’s life is precious, same goes to other people. Now you’re worried about him? Now his life is precious to you?”

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Ah Mi, like the whole family, is also anxious and wishes Eun Joong would return. For that matter, she even charges up his cell phone and carries it with her, which is how she finds out where he really is. When he makes a withdrawal through his credit card and the receipt shows on his phone, so Ah Mi goes to find him.

He’s out in the wild, so to say, as he’s set up camp on an island. It’s such a contrast when seen with his emotional state-he’s in peaceful and quiet surroundings, but his whole being is shaken up and he’s at the point where he feels lost and angry and betrayed.

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He smiles when he sees Ah Mi and she mutters that she was sure he’d object to her coming. Finding him cooking and making patterns with Go Stop cards, she asks him to come back home with her. She tells him how worried his father is but it only seems to spark his anger as his jaw tightens but he never says a word.

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Finally, she calls up Myeong Gun, only wanting to let him know she’s found Eun Joong and that he’s well but Eun Joong snatches the phone away. When she insists on it back to make the call, he yells at her.

“Don’t do it! Don’t do it when I say not! I said not to do it! I said not to call THAT PERSON!”

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About hitomiakiko

Architect and Aspiring Writer

Posted on September 8, 2013, in Asian Cinema, Entertainment, Korean Cinema, Potpourri, Recaps, Written Excerpts and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. anyway here are my thoughts. and its a lengthy one.
    that was an explosive episode. My gosh everyone was just making me cry every second.
    I can’t remember a drama who has all the characters in this dynamic.
    Cause When the cat is out of the BAG, no one comes out unscathed, an everyone had something to lose and to fear.
    1. JooHa, I liked her, I’ve commented before that I like the chemistry between her and HEJ, and I so loathed plots with incest but their’s were just ozzing with chemistry for me that I did not mind over too much. Though I was relieved that she and her fiance somehow moved things along in the chemistry department making me believe there is something there and not just with HEJ.
    2. ManBok Aka Fake EunJoong – I kind of feel for him. many fans are saying that he was turning evil but for me it was expected. Though I would have wanted he bowed out gracefully. But put under his shoes, he had the most to lose, not only is he losing his family, he is losing his identity. Thinking about his situation, he was taken in and made to believe of the lie just to learn at the end that the person you trusted the most just took you (HY) in for self preservation, and he is not even sure if his mother will pick him over the real one since surely the father you respected will never pick him since TaeHa has is the Condiotal father-type. In the end of it all, who is he, where will he go, who to turn and who to trust, what to believe in– everything in his world is skewed 10 times over and he doesn’t know how to fix it. In the end, his acts of evil would be for me more acts of reaction to what was happening. When you lose your identity especially in his way of life, then you also lose you truths, norms, and morals. He is a man reacting and preserving who he is in the best way he knows how in the worst possible way
    3. As for Hwa Young, you can certainly know where she is coming from. She is a mother first and foremost. She will protect her son one bore from her and one she took care of. but when confronted on who to choose, she will crumbles. Wanting to protect one while wanting to embrace the other. what’s the best way to protect and have all her sons. If it were me I could never forgive MG, I would have tortured him to death for kidnapping my son.
    4. Tae Ha – honestly the only thing I didn’t find realistic in this drama would be TaeHa’s scheming and evilness. I think his character was poorly written just to make a villain and move the story along. But I like what is happening to his character on episode 21, when he was confronted that Ha Eun Joong is his real son, the one he just shot a couple of minutes ago, how he broke down was pretty realistic. The part where he went for EunJoong’s foot to verify the would of his son and him looking at the unconscious EJ and looking at the blood spilled by his son because he shot him, Right then and there I felt the realness of him as the parent when confronted with the horrible thing he did.
    5. lastly I think I will write them as one since i think one cant write one if you dont write about the other.
    i think the heart of his drama is the father-son duo of MyeongGun and EunJoong. Their relationship was one of the most heartbreaking things to see. MyeongGun confronted with the evilness of what he did was horrified not because of what will happen to him but more of how it will affect his son. the son he learned to love, the son not born to him by birth but borne to him by heart. I love their dynamic soooo much, that even though I knew it will happen and even though I know its the right thing to happen, I didnt want EunJoong to know about the truth, for Eunjoong’s sake, for his dad, for them and for me.
    For EunJoong who had made his world around his father, it was shattering to know the truth. I think what really shocked him is the fact that the father he highly regarded as righteous and who taught him to be an upward person could do something evil. that shattered everything in him. His life and identity is shattered because his truth about his father is shattered. Looking at how he rejected HY, I think he is does not care at the moment that he has real parents or that he iss TaeHa’s son. Just like what he said to MG before, he doesn’t care about his real parents, or his name, he just wants to be his fathers son. that’s the sole important thing to him. and that is not true anymore. So who is he if not his father’s son?
    His silence during the episode 21 spoke gazillion volumes of his inner turmoil. It was amazing, His world is exploding and inside he is imploding. But outward it was the calm before the storm…
    I am scared for next week’s episode.

    Anyway thanks so much for the highlights breakdown of scandal. Was missing your post this drama for quite some time now. Happy you posted again. Thank!!!

  2. First of all the acting exploded in this episode, everyone was top notch (at least for me)
    So what is with Jang Eun Joong aka Man Bok, okay I get it he was wronged but why is he so selfish, instead of being grateful he is greedy. Shouldnt he be thankful he lived a life he would never have imagined and more over Yoon Hwa Young sees him as his own son. Yoon Hwa Young is at fault too but……
    Jang Tae Ha ohmygod how he kept looking at his hands. One more thing when Myeong Gun said that he is your son, why did he believe it, he had no doubts that Man Bok was his son so why did he believed in Myeong Gun’s words? was it the way he said, the tone and everyhing.
    Yoon Hwa Young, I dont know if to sympathize with her or not. Poor lady has gone through a lot though more than half is her own fault.
    Myeong Gun, I cant bring myself to say what he did was right.
    Eun Joong come I will hide you in my house with Woo Ah Mi.

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