Scandal Episode 25-34 Review
Scandal ends this week after what I’d call a wonderful run for the show. Yes, it had its faults but right now, I can’t really think of any. No wait, I wanted even more OTP time, hehe! I’m totally invested into the story and even when it goes slow or hangs over a point, it’s not annoying or sleep-inducing; rather, it allows you the time and chance to think about the characters more and look at their inner depth. And right now, more than anything, I’m hoping for a happy ending for Eun Joong.
Eun Joong realizes Myeong Gun is dying and that spurs a number of reactions from him. While at one point he shouts that this isn’t fair to him since he’s not even started paying Myeong Gun back for what he did (aka revenge), in the same breath, he pleadingly says this is too much. Myeong Gun should come to him, beg him, beg him again and again for forgiveness. “Only then can I forgive him!”
Ah Mi stands by him every moment although she is shocked at his choice to accept Tae Ha. He asks her to trust him “no matter what. Even if I do something that you can’t forgive, I want you to trust in me.” They share some extremely sweet moments – he takes her to see a movie where he’s there just to sleep and tells her to watch. She calls him out on wasting so much money and gas just to sleep when he could have easily slept in the office. His reply is the most innocently said, “Because I wanted to sleep with you!” When he’s having a bad dream and sweating in his sleep, she holds his hand, taking it back when he wakes up. So he holds her hand instead and at her questioning gaze, he cheekily asks, “What? You can and I can’t?”
They meet up at a park in the mornings and play badminton together but after a few times, he stops coming. Before he goes, she asks him to freeze time and hold on to it. This time, the month of October 2013 would never return for him so he should hold on to things while he still can.
While Tae Ha has suspicions about Eun Joong’s loyalties, he chooses to believe in him – earning a bit of respect from me for that, even though Joo Ran and Man Bok give him enough reason to suspect Eun Joong. Joo Ran makes a deal with Man Bok – she’ll ‘take care’ of Eun Joong so that he can no longer be the successor and Man Bok will hand over his shares of the company to Joo Ha so she can become the successor. Tae Ha unwittingly foils their plan when he orders Joo Ha to turn over all her shares to Eun Joong. While everyone doubts Eun Joong will accept them, he takes them.
While Eun Joong’s motives remain somewhat murky, he takes steps such as preventing Tae Ha from exacting straight revenge on Myeong Gun and while appearing to be on Tae Ha’s side in stopping Hwa Young and Myeong Gun from exposing Tae Ha to the world, he works behind the scenes using an old acquaintance, a hacker to do exactly that. But you realize his intention is not to harm Tae Ha as such and he holds no grudge against the man because of the way he promises him, “I will never leave you Father.” Not only that, Eun Joong distances himself from Hwa Young and Su Young so as to take up the identity of Jang Eun Joong and the responsibilities that would come with it.
At the same time, he avoids Myeong Gun, treating him with anger and calling him ‘Sir’ instead of ‘Father’ – an anger justified. When he saves Myeong Gun from Tae Ha’s direct vengeance, he explicitly states it wasn’t for Myeong Gun’s sake. Putting Myeong Gun in jail overnight and pursuing a case against him brings him at odds with So Young, but he keeps going… Until the day of Gong Gi Chan’s murder trial where he goes and testifies against Ah Mi’s claims and in favor of Tae Ha.
After the trial Ah My breaks up with Eun Joong. She tells him she’s thankful for everything he’s done for her and always wondered how and when things would end between them. He’s taken aback at her declaration and refuses to let go of her. She argues that this is too hard on her – everyday she battles with the feeling that she’s wronging her dead husband and child. She’d accepted his heart because of the way he’d kept the remembrance of her husband and child’s wrongful deaths. Yet every moment that she worries for him, she feels sorry to them.
“Still, I thought I should keep staying by your side, that I shouldn’t be the one to leave first.”
He asks her to keep that promise then, declaring that he can’t and won’t break up with her. Even if she wants to keep living with the dead (her husband and child), he’ll wait for the day she can accept him and asks her to wait for him like he will wait for her. Once they’re both done, then they can start loving each other properly.
Tae Ha hears the declaration and immediately puts his foot down, telling Eun Joong he will never accept Ah Mi.
Man Bok thinks Ah Mi is devastated by Eun Joong’s betrayal and that she must hate him for it and is quite surprised to learn it isn’t so. While previously Ah Mi was unconcerned with winning and more concerned with just bringing the truth out, she now wishes to win at all costs. “Because I want to see him (Eun Joong) again. Because I want to keep seeing him, I have to win.” *HEART*
Myeong Gun realizes that Eun Joong is sacrificing himself to try and bring Tae Ha back from the brink and begs his son not to do that. In response, Eun Joong simply tells his father to keep waiting for him. When he’s finished here, he will come home and he asks that Myeong Gun open the door for him. *sob*
Jin Wook meanwhile continues to use Joo Ha to further his and his father’s ambitions to steal from Tae Ha by fuelling her suspicion of Eun Joong and bringing the two to a conflicting stance. And I actually liked Jin Wook at first, ugh! Joo Ha goes so far as to confront Eun Joong during a board meeting and challenging him to come clean about his motives. Before Eun Joong can say anything, Tae Ha defends him and dares anyone to point a finger at him. It’s in moments like these that you see the softer side of Tae Ha – he’s a father to Eun Joong and despite realizing deep down that his son is doing something against him, he still wishes to try and find the silver lining.
After one such incident, when he sees the evidence of Eun Joong’s doing and remembers the times Eun Joong had acted suspiciously, he goes to see him. In that hearty moment, he reminds Eun Joong of their first ever chat on the phone – when Eun Joong had called him ‘Dad’ and said ‘I missed you’. For Tae Ha, that was the beginning, he says.
When Tae Ha finally decides to go one on one with Eun Joong, asking him why he did what he did, Eun Joong promises to reveal everything to his father that evening and asks that Dad invite Man Bok and Joo Ha as well. When Tae Ha wants to know why, Eun Joong tells him, “It’s because we are all your children. All three of us.”
At the same time, Man Bok threatens Eun Joong with his associate – the hacker as hostage. Man Bok threatens to take the hacker to the police and his father unless Eun Joong hand over Hwa Young’s shares to him and confess to Tae Ha about being the guy who stole the money. Eun Joong agrees.
He’s unable to keep either promise though, when Joo Pil, now on the same team as Joo Ran compromises his car brakes. Having seen the USB in the hanging doll, Joo Pil tries to retrieve it just as Eun Joong returns, so Eun Joong drives off with him. They get into an accident and the car crashes at an abandoned area and its only minutes before it blows up. Eun Joong is the one to get out first and to Joo Pil’s surprise, he saves his life too.
Tae Ha finally gives up on Eun Joong when he goes to the hospital and overhears Eun Joong calling Myeong Gun ‘father’. It’s a heartbreaking scene for all but especially for him since he rushes to the hospital after hearing about Eun Joong’s accident from Hwa Young’s paired phone (the one he’s been using to keep tabs on her).
He goes to Man Bok and decides to embrace him again as his son. Thereafter, he alienates Eun Joong but Eun Joong doesn’t let it deter him and tells Tae Ha he will continue to live there and be his son so that Tae Ha can be his father. Man Bok gloats at his win and burns all the evidence Eun Joong had collected, but Joo Ha calls him out on playing the victim – He’s the one who took Eun Joong’s place and it’s not the other way around. She tells him there’s a line either of them must never cross lest he become a monster too but Man Bok refuses to back down.
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Moreover, in an attempt to regain his place as Jang Tae Ha’s son, he goes so far as to abandon Hwa Young.
All this time Jang Tae Ha has his new minion to get close to So Young as a means for revenge on Myeong Gun. Previously, the minion also kills Eun Joong’s senior in the police force who was investigating the case and that death hits Eun Joong pretty hard. Thankfully, before the man can make a move against her, Eun Joong realizes the danger and rescues her.
When Ah Mi sees Eun Joong and Myeong Gun back together, she wonders what has changed and he reminds her of her advice to freeze time and hold on to it. While she’s still avoiding him after the trial day, he keeps going to her and seeking her out. As So Young once says about Eun Joong, “That fool, he’s the type that once he sets his heart on one person, he will never let her go.”
In the end, Eun Joong decides he cannot let things be as they are anymore and asks for Joo Pil’s help. Since the accident, Joo Pil reflects over his life and realizes he’s lived the wrong way. What touches him most is Eun Joong’s words that it’s like they are both born again and given the chance to start over. With that in mind, he gives back the USB he stole. However, since Man Bok has burned all of the evidence Eun Joong had collected, Eun Joong’s testimony is the only link that may stand a chance in court. And even in that, he does something that stuns everyone.
Instead of turning in Tae Ha, he turns himself in as the abettor in the two murders. As he tells Tae Ha, this time, he won’t be fighting the law but instead his own son and this is the only way to stop him.