Recap: The Heirs Episode 18
Written before live recap
I’m bracing myself for another painful episode of seeing Tan and Eun Sang apart. I’m already weepy. I’ve watched too many dramas to be surprised by any direction this drama will take me. I’m ready for all the good and bad. But I still can’t help but cry, yell, complain, and laugh as I watch the characters I have grown to love and care for, despite all their faults and for all their faults, face the realities of life and growing up. Perhaps you believed too much in love, Tan, Eun Sang, and Young Do. Perhaps your love is not enough to protect the one you want. What decisions will you make? What paths will you take? What lessons will you learn? Let me walk this journey with you.
The order will go like this. I can’t post updates while the drama is airing, unless the episode is moving slowly. I will be trying to capture as much as possible while I am watching the episode. When the episode is over, I will go back to my notes, fix them up a bit and update part by part on each recap post while waiting for the torrents. If you can leave a link here, that would be great. When the full episode is available, I will fill in more blanks and screencaps, and continue to update. Finally, I will leave my comments.
YD yells at Tan, “If you miss her, then go see her.” Tan replies he isn’t going anymore. “You can have her.” YD grabs Tan by the collar and pulls him up. He demands, “What did you say? Do you want to die? Do you have the right to break down?” Tan says, ”No, he doesn’t.” Looking at Young Do tearfully, Tan says, “I can’t do it, Young do.” Angry, YD throws Tan down and walks away. Tan struggles to get up, but he can’t. Won notifies his dad of Yoon’s new position. Dad scoffs that Yoon is only capable of reaching that high. Won and Dad go back and forth through the story of Guan Yu from the Three Kingdoms. Dad tells Won he can go now, but Won says he didn’t come to see dad. Right then Tan comes in, and everyone is shocked by how roughed up Tan looks. Tan ignores everyone and just goes to his room. Won enters Tan’s room and says,”Get up. Let’s go to the hospital.” Tan says get out, but Won reminds Tan that he promised to do everything he said. Tan screams, “Get out!” Won yells back that Tan doing this won’t change anything. Broken, Tan pleads to Won, “Hyung, when do I go to the U.S.? I’m think I’m really going to die. Please send me. Please save me.” Tan weeps, and Won looks at him sadly, worried.
Won is back at Zeus hotel, and he runs into YD. He notices YD’s broken lips, and on instinct he asks if Tan fought with him. When YD says he hit Tan because he deserved it, Won asks why YD hit his little brother. YD snorts- he’s not supposed to hit kids with older brothers, but he forget that Tan had a brother since Tan never shows it. Won retorts dryly that Tan must not have friends either. CY and BN are at MS’s studio, studying for the final exams, but CY is also looking at his phone. BN thinks he is looking at pictures of her, but CY is actually checking ES’s SNS status updates. BN reads through the messages too and finds it strange that ES replied to her own questions- where are you, I’m drinking right now- but we know that it is Tan and ES’s old chat record when Tan was logged into her account.
ES is going through her own account too. She sees the recent message from Tan (before he found her) that asks where she is- “I miss you.” There are also pictures of her uploaded that he took while following her footsteps or watching her sleep. He wrote, “I was always where you were. So please wait a bit. I will definitely find you. I will be there soon. Wherever you are, I will be standing behind you when you look back.” Crying, Eun Sang starts deleting these messages, and Tan, who was also looking at her account, notices this. She has deleted all pictures of herself off the account. HS and Tan are at a cafe. HS, being his friend, has been trying to call out Tan often, worried. He warns him against ending up at the hospital; he’s told him before that hospital food does not taste good. Tan reassures him that he has no thoughts of dying. HS advices Tan, “If you can’t bear it, then bring her back. Even if nothing changes, it feels easier to breathe once after you create trouble.”
YD is pacing the path near ES’s place, and ES’s mom runs into him. She recognizes him from before and so does YD. He greets her shyly. He came to see ES, but it seems she is not home. ES’s mom signs for him to leave, but gives it a second thought. She invites him in. ES’s mom has prepared a meal for him. YD looks nervous, unsure what to do, but he is polite and sweet to ES’s mom. She tells him that ES went to Seoul to give in a form to school. YD starts eating, and he thanks ES’s mom when she pushes the plates over to him. Tears well up in his eyes as he chews this homemade warm food made by a mother. To her he says, “It’s delicious.”
ES’s mom asks him if he is ES’s classmate; is he close to ES? YD, not wanting to be her friend, replies, “I like ES.” ES is meeting with Tan’s dad. Dad informs her that he knows where ES is living and that she met Tan. He scolds her for her audacity when she starts to say Tan’s name, but ES continues- “Tan is a kind, honest, and warm child. And that is why I liked him a lot.” Dad asks how can she be so impudent. Eun Sang replies it’s because it was not wrong to like Tan. Dad says it is wrong because she received his money and then still liked his son. ES replies that she will pay him back. Dad wonders if she means then she will see Tan again once she pays him back. “Why does a young thing like you have no fear?” ES replies, “Because I like Tan. My feelings for him haven’t changed. No matter how much you try to scare me and how much I am scared of you, I can’t lie that I don’t like him anymore.” But because he is telling her not to meet Tan, she won’t. “So please don’t call me anymore.” ES is staring despondently into the closed dream catcher store. Tan is walking nearby, and he sees her. She sees him. They stare at each other for a while, she unsure and Tan emotionless. Eun Sang is about to say something, but as she looks at his unchanging and emotionless expression, the words won’t come out. He starts walking towards her, and she starts walking towards him. They come so close, yet are so far as they just pass each other by. They continue to walk away from one another.
Then, Tan stops. He turns around and runs back to the store. He searches for ES, but he can’t see her. He dashes off once again. Eun Sang is sitting in the bus going back to her new home. Tan runs in and takes a seat next to her, across the aisle. They’ve arrived at the seaside town. As ES walks home, Tan follows silently behind. ES is aware of his presence, but she doesn’t turn around. She walks into her house, and Tan stops afar, watching her go in. Behind the door, ES cries. Then, ES rushes outside, wanting to see Tan, but she doesn’t find him outside. She runs further down the path, but Tan is already gone. She doesn’t see him anywhere.
ES is walking home dejected, when she lifts up her head and sees Tan standing in front of her. Tan asks, “Why did you look for me?” Scared, ES replies, “Don’t talk to me.” He starts to come towards her so she cries out, “Don’t come,” as she back away. She turns around to walk away, but Tan runs up and hugs her from behind.
Eun Sang cries, “Don’t do this,” but Tan says, “I can’t let you go.What are you going to do?” ES just breaks from the hug and walks away, tears falling down her face. Back at the Kim house, Dad is cutting up KA’s heart. He says she and Tan are alike, having the same passionate blood that made a lowly information desk employee like her cross the threshold of the chairman’s door. Why is Tan unable to give up even one thing when he is already living in the lap of luxury? KA is deeply hurt; how can he say that to her? He is the one that told her to come over, that it was okay. Evil man replies that he is regretting it now- that he made his house a laughing stock after being bewitched by something cheap and shiny. “Tell Tan this. That when he doesn’t know what to choose, to choose the most expensive thing. The cheaper it is, the shinier.” KA calls him cowardly and asks what has she been to him. Dad replies, “I’ve just been telling you this. Why are you asking again?” Die, evil man, die.
Alone in her room, KA looks at her wretched image in the mirror. She starts to take off her jewelry one by one.
R is at a wedding dress shop, canceling the dresses ordered for her mom’s now broken wedding. YD comes in too, here to do the same thing. These two go through their banter, joking, smiling, relaxed. R asks to have dinner together to celebrate, but Young Do has somewhere to go. YD is back at the little food place again, alone. He is looking at the graffiti on the wall, and for the first time he notices the words his mother left him- “Are you doing well, Young Do?”
Won and HJ lie in bed together. Won fiddles with HJ’s wishbone necklace, and he asks if she has a wish. HJ says he won’t be able to make it come true, and he wonders if it is marriage. HJ says it’s not something that trivial. Won asks, “Is marriage trivial,” so HJ says, “You must be sorry for going to that meeting with the prospective marriage partner.” Won wonders why she isn’t asking him anything about the woman- name, age, is she pretty- and HJ replies its because she is confident she won’t lose to that woman in those areas. Won laughs and agrees.
Won wonders if he did what Tan did , would he and HJ not have ended up like this? HJ asks what Tan did. Won replies, “He’s become cold and vicious, butting heads with anyone, breaking and cracking. He’s a mess.” HJ says Won can’t do that- Won dreams of the world’s highest place but Tan dreams of Eun Sang being his world. HJ says she won’t interfere with him; he should just go up. Won replies that he is on his way down. “Please wait a little more.” ES is working at the bookstore. She reads a paragraph from the book “Wonder Boy” by author Kim Yeon Soo.
Our hands holding onto each other as we escaped from amongst the people that time. The bone, muscle, and veins that strained to not let go, it’s almost everything of the love I know. What other love is there besides that? Just, besides the fact that I couldn’t let go of that hand.
Won has come to see ES, and his characteristic dry and cold way of asking Eun Sang if she doesn’t want to see Tan- “Are you holding it back , or did you forget him?”- has Eun Sang thinking he has come to warn her against seeing Tan. Her shaky answer that she is trying to forget him has Won convinced of something. He asks her, “When do you want to go back to where you originally were?” At her surprise, Won explains that he and Tan knows that it is their father’s fault that she is here, so she can ask for what she wants. He has just come to do what should be done. He advises, “When it is hard to decide, don’t look far ahead; just look at tomorrow. If you think about what you want to to do immediately tomorrow, the answer changes. If you need a pretext to go to back to Tan’s side, why not use the final exams? Leaning upon a small pretext is another way when you can’t muster up the courage.”
Won goes down to the winery expecting Tan to be there. He is. Won reminds Tan that he said he will do whatever Won wanted him to do, and Tan, thinking that Won is finally sending him to the U.S., asks when. Won says something completely unexpected to Tan. First, he wants Tan to do well on his finals. He grits his teeth as he warns Tans against placing last again. Won hands the note ES left for him to give to Tan. He says he thought of not giving it to him since he really had no reason to, but, “If this becomes the reason for you to live, try to live. You asked me to save you.” Tan reads the letter.
To Kim Tan. The seasons have changed twice, and the summer we met is distant like a dream. That place was too hot in the day, at night it was too cold, and I liked you. The us who became blinded by each other, our temperature that was too hot and too cold, will I be able to forget? I’m sorry for running away like this. I’m sorry for lying that I will wait for you at home. My fortune amongst misfortunes, Kim Tan. Now I am really disappearing like a dream dreamt yesterday. In that dream, I was happy to meet you, Kim Tan.
ES dons her Jeguk High uniform again. Tan is sitting on bench at school. Someone sits beside him, and when Tan turns to see who it is, he is shocked to see Eun Sang. Eun Sang smiles as Tan’s eyes take her in, trying to decide if he is really seeing who he thinks he is seeing.
ES breaks the silence, saying, “Hi, Kim Tan.” She asks if he studied a lot; she didn’t so she is worried. His eyes never leaving her, Tan whispers, “Is it really you?” ES remarks that she wanted to ask before, but why is his face like that? She asks gently, “What happened, you idiot?” Tan: “You left.” ES: “I came back now.” She promises, “I won’t run away now. First, I will take the final exams. Then, I will make up any excuse. In that way, I will stay here. Besides you.” Tan urgently pulls her in to hug her tight, hearing the words he wanted to hear so desperately. Both smile, relieved to be in each other’s embrace again, solid, whole, not a dream.
YD has comes to school, and he overhears some students say that ES is back. Right then, he sees her down the hallway. She walks toward him, and she starts to say his name, but he won’t even look at her as he walks away. He’s not ready to face it yet- the reason why she came back.
ES enters the broadcast room to find CY and BN there. They scold her for worrying them. They are happy to see her again; BN especially, hiding it behind the pretense that ES’s absence just causes trouble for the broadcast club. But we know it is all lies as BN hugs ES, and I smile along with ES at BN’s cuteness.
CY asks for ES’s new number, but BN says she will get it from ES and then give it CY if he is good to her. SO CUTE! BN and CY forever! Everyone takes their exam, Tan at first looks like he isn’t going to be able to answer anything, but he focuses and takes the test. YD also seems to distracted to take the test at first, but then after looking at ES working hard on her exam, he starts taking the test too. Outside in the hallway, Tan and YD pass by each other without even looking at each other. YD comes into broadcast room where ES is studying. He asks if she is going to walk there or be dragged there. He’s comes to understand what it feels like to be a loan shark. Does he have to follow her around and force her? When is she going to buy him the noodles? This time, they are actually at a noodle place. While eating, and not looking at her, YD asks ES why she came to school. ES replies, “To take the test.” YD: “Besides that.” ES: “I wanted to come back.”
Still not looking at her, YD asks, “So you’re determined to walk down that path.” ES replies, “I’ve come to want to.” YD stops eating. He finally looks at her as he tells her to not get hurt as she battles with the chairman. “If it is hard, just drop to the floor. So I can mock you saying, ‘I knew it this would happen.’” Eun Sang says she will.
Young Do says he ate well. “Bye. Let’s not see each other anymore. I’m dumping you right now.” ES asks, “We can’t at least be friends?” YD reminds her that he said to her before he doesn’t do things like that. She was a girl to him from the beginning. Even now. And from now on, she is his first love. “Let’s not even say anything if we see each other.” Even after much time passes. YD leaves Eun Sang. He walks away from her, steps heavy as he says goodbye to her in his heart.
BN texts Eun Sang, yelling at her for not coming home- Eun Sang is to sleep at BN’s place tonight. ES texts back, saying she is sorry but she found someplace else to sleep. Hehe, ES is with Tan at MS’s studio, and this is Tan’s happy face. Man, I missed that stupid grin.
Tan asks who she met, and ES replies, “A friend who doesn’t want to be my friend.” I think Tan understands who she is talking about. He asks if ES told BN that they were together right now, and ES replies, “Something similar.” Tan comments that she is too obedient today. ES explains that it’s because she doesn’t want him to leave. ES states the next pretext that she has come up with for staying next to Tan- she has nowhere to sleep. She asks Tan to also give an excuse to be with her. Tan: “I like you.” ES looks a little disappointed: “That’s the small excuse?” Tan: “I missed you.” ES: “A smaller excuse.” Tan lets out a deep breath as he looks away. “I thought I was going to die.” He said to himself that he won’t smile, live well, or love someone. He said he will become the most miserable person in the word. He turns to ES again- “So don’t ever leave me again, Cha Eun Sang. You understand?” Eun Sang eyes fill with tears as she nods yes.
Eun Sang takes Tan’s hand and interlocks fingers. They smile at each other, happy again.
Next day, Tan and ES are walking hand in hand to school together. Tan asks how ES can study all night. They get into a cute banter over who is going to get a higher school for the final. ES then remarks that she is sorry to MS because she is not even paying to stay in his studio. Tan replies that he has something he is getting angry at himself for these days- it’s the fact that he is still a minor. He says there are many different meanings behind that. First, it’s because a minor’s truth is often seen as a pubescent complaint. ES points out that there is no solution but to grow older. Tan asks mischievously if she doesn’t want to hear the second reason, and ES, catching that glint in his eyes, immediately rejects his offer. KA calls Tan, asking why he didn’t come home last night. Where was he? Tan reassures his mom that he slept at MS’s. KA asks when he will come home, and then informs him that she might not be here then. She explains she is just telling him this, when presumably, Tan asks she is telling him this kind of stuff all of a sudden. She tells him to take the test well, and hangs up. KA traces the picture of her and Tan that she is packing in her suitcase.
KA and Dad. KA says she wants to break up with him. Dad calls her crazy. KA says she wants to live looking at the real sky. Dad can’t believe what she is saying. KA says she will do what Tan wants. For his future, she wants him to stay at jeguk, but if he wants to leave jeguk, she will let him. KA says goodbye, “However the start, I loved you.” KA is saying goodbye to dad, saying there is not even a picture of them together. Dad’s spy says he will take KA to the airport. This surprises her. Dad says she is mistaken if she thinks she can leave just as she wants. He is sending her to the U.S. She can rest there until she gets over being hurt by what he said to her before.
Outside the house, KA sees the chance to run away, and she takes a taxi. The spy chases after her. KA arrives at Jeguk High, and she calls Tan, but there is no answer. YD is about to drive past the school, but he sees her and stops. He gets out and bows to her politely. He nervously asks why she is here, adding that he is sorry for before. But KA is in a hurry, and she just asks YD if he has seen Tan around; can he find him for her? She has no time, and she can’t go inside the school because of JS. YD immediately ushers KA into his car, telling her to wait there. YD dashes off, running as fast as he can to find Tan. This scene is interlaced with cuts of young Tan doing the same thing for YD in the past. YD thankfully finds Tan very quickly, and he leads Tan to his car where KA is. He sends them off quickly before the spy arrives. The spy just misses them.
Alone, YD imagines his own mom asking the other students if they know where he is. Young Do walks past the non-existent memory of his mom as he heads back to the place he lost his chance to see her. Also the last place that has any trace of her left.
He answers what his mom asked him on the wall- “Are you doing well, Young Do?” YD answers, “No. I think I lived wrong.”
KA and Tan. Tan asked if dad and mom really broke up. She says yes but Tan suspects something else since she had guards chase her. Tan then sends KA to YD’s hotel for now. Tan is back at home, talking to dad. He says he will take care of mom now. How? By parting with him. Tan says he will leave the house. He will live with KA as her family. Everything that made him happy, his dad didn’t allow. JS and dad at hospital. Apparently, dad feigned illness but Tan, Won, and KA didn’t come to the hospital. He instructs JS to plan Tan’s b-day just like Won’s.
Won has called Tan to his office. He wonders if Tan has heard that their dad is in the hospital. Tan hasn’t, and he asks why. Won says Tan doesn’t need to know or go to the hospital either. Won reminds him of their deal again. Tan wonders if it is because of him, and Won flatly says it’s not. Won then tells Tan to tell his mom that she can stay at the Cheongdamdong villa. Won: “In your mother’s choice, there is a part of it that is due to me.” Tan looks at Won and says, “Hyung. I liked you, hyung. You were the only person I could lean on while living with Dad and JS, before Mom came into the house. I’m sorry for leaning on you as I wanted to. I’m sorry for all the bad things I did and said to you.” Won curtly replies, “Don’t apologize. It makes me uncomfortable.” Won starts talking about Tan’s b-day party, but this is the first time Tan has heard of it. Won realizes that this party is just being used by their dad to domesticate Tan. Won tells him that dad has gone all out, calling reporters to the party. Won tells him to choose, and Tan says he will go. He asks Won to be there too. Just as Tan is leaving, Won wishes him a happy birthday to his back, not even looking at him. Surprised, Tan turns around, but Won is embarrassed and won’t even meet his eye. Tan smiles, happy.
Everyone at school has gotten an invitation to Tan’s b-day party. BN, CY, and YS tease HS about his kiss with R, asking if he is dating R or and if he will kiss her again at this party. CY is all tough, telling BN to not to go to Tan’s party. HS wonders at this change- “Is he Yoon Chan Young?” BN happily says as she links arms with CY, leaning on his shoulders, “He’s so awesome, right?”
Tan has sent some people to pick up ES.
Tan is dressed in a suit, pacing in a large room. Eun Sang enters, gorgeously made up in a red dress. He says, “You’re really pretty.” Eun Sang: “Good you know.” Tan tells her he is paying her back now for the taxi money she lent him before. Eun Sang says she hasn’t been able to pay him back yet. Tan says she can do it today. They have to be very brave today. “Can you do it?” ES nods yes. He offers his hand. She takes it. Tan and ES arrive at the party’s red carpet. Tan leaves car first. Then ES follows. They stand face to face as the reporters take pictures. Tan asks ES if she is nervous. ES replies, “Yes, a bit.” Tan: “It may be a bit hard. Still, straight ahead.”
*Italicized parts are places I didn’t re-write to save time.
No Preview for Episode 19
What a whirlwind of an episode. So many things seemed to have happened really fast as people quickly made new decisions and found closure. Ki Ae decides to leave Tan’s dad. Young Do decides to give up on Eun Sang. He also finds a bit of closure with his mom. Eun Sang decides to return to Tan. Won decides to be a big brother to Tan. If yesterday’s episode was full of people languishing in their pain, this episode we have speed and determination moving many of the characters forward, as well as the story. But did some parts feel too rushed to you?
Young Do helping out Tan’s mom felt a bit contrived. It was all just too neatly tied up in a nice bow of Young having to live out almost the exact type of moment between his mom and Tan in the past. It was a quick shortcut to some closure for Young Do, and I’m wondering why the rush. I guess Kim Eun Sook wanted to kill two birds with one stone- get Ki Ae out the Jeguk house and also give some closure to Young Do. I see why Kim Eun Sook put Young Do in that situation. First, Young Do had to see and understand how his own mom must have felt and looked like when she was looking for him through his interaction with Ki Ae. That is That is why Young Do was able to imagine his own mom later. Second, Young Do has to experience the same kind of panic Tan felt as he searched for him in the past. It is through these two types of experience that Young Do is able to answer his mom. No, he is not doing well. He lived his life wrong, making himself miserable in order to make others miserable. This is not something his mom would have wanted from him. Hopefully from now on, Young Do will be on a pursuit of happiness for himself, which ties along well with him giving up in Eun Sang. Young Do gives up on Eun Sang, fully understanding how much Tan needs her and how much she is willing to endure to be with Tan. There is nothing more he can do to warn her and protect her against Tan’s dad. If she is going to jump into the fire looking this happy, he can’t stop her anymore. At least he got a warm home-cooked meal by Eun Sang’s mom. That was one of the best moments in this drama, beautifully acted out by Kim Woo Bin who shows the overwhelming emotions of nervousness, surprise, nostalgia, and sadness. So many things happened to Young Go this episode, so I am worried for will happen to Young Do in the next two episodes.
We can say that Won fully trusts Tan now, right? He doesn’t try to send Tan away, and he doesn’t ask for the stocks even after ES comes back. He is finally playing the role of big brother.; I almost squealed when Won says to Young Do, “Why did you hit my little brother?” I’ve come to realize Won is not cold to Tan just because of their family situation, but that is just his personality now. Won is going to be little dry, cold, and sharp around the edges, but he has shown he cares for his little brother a lot, and will express it the best way he can. The significance of Won wishing Tan a happy birthday is huge since it its his birth that changed Won’s life forever. Tan is now Won’s family, not his enemy. With this also comes change for Won’s relationship with Hyun Joo. Won said to her that he is “coming down” now, after HJ pointed out to him that what Won has always wanted is to be at the top. I’m not sure what this means exactly for Hyun Joo and Won, but it is still nice to see Won finally realizing that there more important things in life worth fighting than a high position in the Jeguk group.
Initially, I thought Eun Sang’s decision to return was too quick and sudden. Now I understand it a bit more, but it doesn’t take anyway all of the nagging feeling that her decision to return seemed too easy and sudden. But here are the reasons I see for why she decided to go back. 1) She sees how much worse Tan is without her; 2) She sees that Tan and Won no longer seem to be enemies; 3) she doesn’t want him to pass her by like a mid-summer night’s dream either; and 4) the love she knows is the hand that held onto her tightly.
Once again I am ending abruptly since I am falling asleep at the keyboard. I just want to thank you guys for your thoughts as it helps to work out my own and to understand the drama better. Your support, love, and critical discussion of this drama is really the fuel that keeps me awake this long. Thank you!