Recap: Gu Family Book Episode 3 [Complete]
Written before the ep: This week we finally have the appearance of the main leads, Lee Seung Gi and Suzy. I honestly have no preconception regarding their chemistry because I have not seen any interviews or live interaction. So far I’ve only seen preview stills in which they look cute together and the brief episode preview which only brought my focus to the possibility of some awkwardness of Lee Seung Gi in a sageuk. But then again, this is not your mama’s sageuk. He might, and probably is, be just right as the mischievous half-human, half beast Choi Kang Chi.
Character Abbreviations for live recap:
Choi Kang Chi- KC
Dam Yeo Wool- YW
Park Tae Seo- TS
Park Chung Jo- CJ
Jo Gwan Woong (the man who killed SH’s father)- GW
Priest is WR’s friend. So Jung priest/monk- SJ
Dam Pyung Joon (the gumiho hunter)- PJ
Yoon Seo Hwa (Lee Seung Gi’s future mother)- SH
Gu Wol Ryung (Lee Seung Gi’s future father)- WR
SJ is running through the woods thinking WR is back. He enters the cave and sees the baby and SH. SH is not holding the baby.
SJ cooks soup for SH and SH is just staring emotionless at baby. SJ notes that the baby has the WR’s face. SH says she can’t remember what WR looked like.
SJ takes out the wooden dagger and tells SH, “I told him to stab you in the heart with this. If he did, he would be okay.” SH asks in shock, “Why didn’t he?” SJ replies, “He said he finally found someone in a thousand years that made his heart beat faster. He couldn’t kill you so that he could live. That was his love for you.” He tells SH to carry the dagger now since it is the last remaining symbol of WR’s love for her.
SH is walking through the village like a zombie. She narrates, “I was going to kill it. Since it might be a monster, I thought I should kill it. I had made that cruel decision. Humans beings are weak and feeble-minded, and regret only after losing something precious…Don’t forgive someone like me. I pushed a loved one over the cliff and even tried to kill that person’s child.”
SH stares at GW who is talking to a Japanese ambassador. SH takes out the dagger and walks toward GW and slashes his face. SH’s narration of her letter is in the background. “Don’t forgive me. I will carry all these sins to the grave.” SH is killed by GW’s men.
In her letter to SJ, she wrote, “Take pity on this child and don’t let the child live a lonely and sad life like WR but let him live among normal humans as a full human being. This is the last favor asked by a worthless mother.”
SJ repeats her words. “Let the baby live among humans as a full human…” SJ stares at the baby as the baby’s cries fill the cave.
MS is at the river with other yangbans enjoying an outing. MS is out to win over these other yangbans for his business. But suddenly, MS hears a baby crying and jumps into the river to fetch the basket. He carries it out.
SJ appears on the scene exclaiming, “You’ve picked up a bundle of fortune!” He tells MS that good fortune will come to him. Reading from MS’s face, it looks like that these days, things are not turning out well for him but with the baby, fortune will come to him. SJ takes out a red bead bracelet and puts in on baby. SJ says if MS does not take off the bracelet from the baby until he turns 20, good fortune will come to him. MS asks in disbelief, “You expect me to believe that?” SJ says, “These woods, trees, and wind are the witnesses to my words.” Suddenly the wind blows. Another yangban name the baby “Kang Chi” which means “abandoned by river.”
A voice narrates, “That high-off and dangerous mountain forest where humans are not easily permitted to enter. The sad love story between the animal spirit Gu Wol-ryung and Seo-hwa came to an end like that but here, another legend was starting, called…” MS repeats the baby’s name. “Kang Chi. Choi Kang Chi.”
The village storyteller is telling the story of MS and KC. The kids asks if fortune really did come to MS. The storyteller says, “Yes. He became extremely fortunate.” MS opened a inn called “A Hundred Years Inn” with over 100 servants and customers from all over the world.
Kids says MS must have a lot of gold. Storyteller says MS has lots of other treasures too so many thieves would attempt to rob the inn but none were successful. We see a scene of a thief trying to steal from MS but is caught. The thief is brought in front of MS and he begs for forgiveness, scared. He says he has seven kids who have not eaten for five days. Instead of ordering punishment, MS hands him two bags of seeds- one to plant and feed his family and another to plant and sell back to MS. Thief thanks him and swears his loyalty to MS.
Storyteller says that MS is famous for a kind heart and the people of the village respect him highly. He asks kids if the kids want to become like MS and they tell yes. SJ, who was in the audience, looks pleased.
A hand shoots up in the crowd. It is Yeo-wool (YW). She wants to know what happened to the baby. The storyteller doesn’t look too happy to talk about KC…
Because KC is a troublemaker. Choi (MS’s right-hand) is looking for KC because some gang members have come to the inn looking for him, claiming that KC beat them up. Tae-seo (MS’s son) ask what they they want.They want TS to produce KC or compensate him. TS asks them to leave and he will contact them later. They refuse. They want KC now.
CJ is sneaking around the inner quarters where Chung-jo’s (MS’s daughter) room is. CJ’s maid exclaims at how pretty CJ looks. She is getting ready to meet the mother of her arranged-to-be-married groom. CJ talks about how her father is rushing her marriage to this family because he needs their support for his political advancement. While she is talking about this, KC is sneaking up on her but before he can surprise her, CJ turns, scaring him instead.
KJ asks why CJ does not call him “older brother” like she used to when they were younger. She is two years younger. CJ starts to say, “That was when I was young but now…” She stops before she cautiously finishes, “I’m about to become a wife.” KC awkwardly laughs it off, saying she does fit in that place. “The CJ I know is someone who hates a boring life. I know you better than anyone else.” CJ and KC stare meaningfully at each other.
CJ’s maid sees CJ’s mom coming with future mother-in-law. She steps out to distract the visitors while CJ rushes KC out. KC wants to know first, before he leaves, if CJ really wants to an arranged marriage.
CJ’s mom bursts into the room, suspecting something but KC is not there. She asks if KC was there but CJ lies, “No.” Mom reminds CJ that KC is from the lowest rungs of society and even if they grew up together, CJ needs to be careful now since it is an important time. CJ assures her mother not to worry. She closes the window through which KC escaped from, as a butterfly flies from the sill to the roof where KC is sitting. He heard the whole conversation and disheartened, sighs and jumps down.
He runs into TS who reminds him of Mom’s warning for KC not to come to the female quarters. KC claims he was just passing by. TS tells him about the men who came looking for him.
Back the inn’s courtyard, TS whispers to KC to send the men away quietly as there are important quests at the house today. KC ignores him and yells at the men, “Do you want to die? Do you know who I am?” They replied, “Choi Kang Chi.” KC replies, “That’s right and I protect this inn and take care of any troublesome people.” But the lead gang member calls KC a mere slave and son of a dog. (FYI, nobody knows about KC being WR’s son. It’s just what Koreans says when they curse at someone.) KC gets extremely angry but TS warns KC to stop. But at the man’s continuous name-calling, KC starts to raise his fist to hit him. TS blocks KC and offers the man ten nyang to go away but the man demands more. KC won’t agree to it but TS overs 30 nyang. Man takes it but KC suddenly yells “50 nyang. Let’s make it 50 nyang but…” KC takes a broom and stabs it into the ground with his incredible strength. He says to the men, “If you can bring me to this broom then I will give you the 50 nyang.” The men start chasing KC as he runs away.
CJ, mom, and future mother-in-law are quietly having tea while KC is causing a ruckus elsewhere. Future mother-in-law compliments CJ’s calm and delicate manners. They hear some noice but don’t see it. It’s KC beating up all the guys. The fight comes all the way where CJ and quest are. The man knock KC all the way to CJ, knocking over the tea table and KC gets entangled in the curtains. Thankfully, TS comes with the inn guards. MS has also come. The men are afraid of MS and they stop fighting.
KC tries to get up to greet MS but he slips. CJ bends down to aks if he is okay and KC is pleased with her concern. Mom is not happy at all and yells at him. KC gets up and bows to MS respectfully.
MS gives the men 50 nyang and they leave. Choi tells KC to ask MS for forgiveness. MS asks KC what is it this time. Did they bother someone in the inn or did they bother a weaker person. He knows KC only fights for those two reasons. KC simply says he was at fault for causing the trouble. MS kindly says it’s not a fault to be a little rough at that energetic age but he wants KC to act like an adult now since he must help TS run the inn and just orders him to sit in the courtyard until the evening and think about what he did wrong.
Mom complains to MS that she wants KC out of the house now. MS says there is not much time left until KC’s twentieth birthday but mom is worried about KC’s origins.
We see flashback of the night when MS first brought back KC. Mom was not happy then too as she was pregnant with TS at that time. She doesn’t want a baby insid the house who they don’t know which parents he belongs to. Suddenly, MS hears the baby crying from another room.
Choi has accidentally hurt the baby with a candlestick and the baby is bleeding on his forehead. As MS picks it up, the bracelet falls from the baby and the wound starts to heal rapidly. Mom is really scared now and exclaims that she wants the baby out but at the point, she starts to feel contractions.
The birthing is not going well. Mom and baby are in danger. MS is standing outside worried when he remembers what SJ told him about the bracelet and KC being a bundle of good fortune. He goes to the baby and asks, “Are you cursed or are you a bundle of fortune?” MS puts the bracelet back on the baby and the wind blows again. He hears another loud scream from the mother and he rushes outside.
Joy! A healthy boy was born and the mother is safe too. Right after that news, another servant rushes in to exclaim to MS that their ships which were thought to be lost at sea have come back safely. MS turns to KC’s room and a strong wind blows through the household again. Blue lights surround the baby inside the room.
It is night now in current day and KC is still kneeling outside in the courtyard. His stomach rumbles in hunger. Fortunately, CJ brings him an apple. KC is happy to see her but warns her that woman of the household are not allowed in the inn. CJ asks if he doesn’t want the apple then so KC quickly takes it from her.
CJ asks solemnly, “Why did you do it?” Even if you do that, this marriage arrangement won’t break.” KC asks her why she is doing this and CJ replies that she needs to make this sacrifice for her family even if she doesn’t want to. Her father needs the connection for his political ambitions. She needs to protect her family. KC hotly exclaims that he will protect everyone. “I’m strong.” CJ replies that there are things that you can’t do by strength alone such as politics and political scheming. KC asks what is her real heart without all those things in mind. “Do you like me?” He counts to three for her answer but when she doesn’t reply, he counts again. Instead of saying anything, CJ kisses him on the cheek and KC freezes. (This reminds me of WR and SH. I miss them!)
CJ gets up and serenely says, “Let’s go in. The wind is cold.” She gives him a warm smile as she walks away. KC touches his cheek where CJ kissed her. He howls in glee but darn, the mom saw all this.
Flashback to mom asking MS what he is going to do if something happens before KC’s birthday. “You can’t pretend you don’t know how KC feels about CJ.” MS shrugs it off saying, “They just grew up together like brother and sister.” Back at the present, mom swears to chase KC out if MS won’t do it.
YW is in the village with Gon, her bodyguard. She is kneeling in front of a fortuneteller. The fortuneteller is telling her that she won’t be able to find a girl, looking all effeminate, thinking YW is a boy. YW corrects her and tells her she is a girl. The fortuneteller exclaims, “Even worse! What man would want a girl who looks like you? Men like gentle and pretty girls.” Gon quietly smiles as YW looks disappointed.
YW and Gon are grabbing something to eat. YW has her head down in disappointment because of what the fortuneteller told her. She asks Gon if a a woman who wields a sword and bow really has no charm. Gon clears his throat. “I don’t know…” When YW totally becomes disheartened, Gon tries to quickly explain, “No, that’s not what I meant…”
SJ, who is sitting behind YW, calls out loud to her, saying, “You have a pure and clean soul.” YW asks SJ to read her palm. While he was a little drunk before, he grows alert as he reads her palm. He says to her, “Your destiny (destined partner) will soon appear but if you can avoid it, it is best to avoid that person.” YW asks, “Isn’t your destined partner decided by the heavens? If you can avoid it, how could it be destiny?” SJ replies, “Although you might not be able to avoid him if you meet him, but you can choose your destiny. If you choose through your own will, that fated relationship can end right there.” YW asks if there is anything else to stop this destiny from coming to her like a talisman. SJ replies, “I had a friend who met someone he shouldn’t have and ended up losing his life. There is no other way but to avoid in a relationship between a man and woman. YW replies, “So what you mean is I should just grow old and die alone.” SJ replies that she has a good personality so she will be able to meet another man if she waits. He tells her to avoid whoever she meets at a peach tree with the crescent moon hanging on it.
MS receives envelope with a bow and arrow drawn on it. MS leaves the house in a hurry saying he won’t be able to return tonight.
TS drops a pile of notebooks in front of KC. He wants KC to go over them for any mistakes and also as a punishment for costing the inn 50 nyang. KC whines and asks if there is anything he can do physically. TS orders KC to sit and KC pouts as he obeys. Aw, poor puppy. TS leaves and KC slams the table, causing the legs to break. Oops! (F.Y.I., TS and KC speak to each other freely despite the difference in status. They address each other like friends.)
CJ’s maid, GD, hands KC a note. She quickly leaves and walks past CJ’s mom. It seems mom ordered her to give KC the note. KC reads the note and he is surprised by its content.
MS arrives at PJ’s house who has now risen in ranks and also trains the soldiers.
TS’s manservant notes that the inn was quiet all day with KC kept busy. TS figures that KC is dozing off right now. But when they enter the room, KC is gone. TS groans.
KC is at some dark, secluded area of the village, calling out CJ’s name. GD comes out of the building and tells KC that CJ is waiting inside. KC goes in through the building and ends up face to face with CJ’s mom. She says exclaims how dare someone like KC have profane feelings for CJ. KC explains that his feelings for CJ are not profane but truthful. “Even though I don’t know where I came from, even some like me has true feelings.” The mom tells KC to shut his mouth. She calls for the inn guards who surround KC.
PJ tells MS that GW is coming down. There has a been a series of murders in the north but they are also now happening in the south. Officials were sent to investigate but they were also murdered and their bodies were found at MS’s port in another city. PJ thinks these murders have to do with GW since the men who have died were all obstacles to GW and after their deaths, their wealth went to GW. PJ thinks MS and his inn are next on the list.
GW and his caravan have reached the city where the inn is. Ugh, him again.
YW and Gon are keeping an eye out on GW. They send a message to PJ, who is YW’s father. YW figures that since there are 10 visible guards protecting GW, there must be at least thirty more moving invisibly. YW notes their murderous aura.
The inn guards have tied up KC and the mom is giving him an ultimatum- leave the inn on his own or… KC interrupts- the inn is his home and family! But mom won’t relent. She orders the guards to wrap up KC, beat him, and throw him out of the city. The head guard is worried about MS but mom says she will speak to MS herself. She thinks MS would also be angry and shocked that someone like KC liked his daughter. “He will feel as greatly betrayed as he believe in you.” Mom leaves and KC tries to chase after her but the head guards blocks him. He says he is sorry but he must obey the lady’s orders.The guards start to surround him but KC fights them off and runs, still tied up. His bracelet glows as KC tears apart the rope.
YW says they can go home now since they let her dad know about GW’s arrival. She still wonders, though, why a crescent moon would hang from the peach tree instead of a peach. Gon advises her to ignore people like SJ. YW says she wants to but his words keep circling inside her head. Gon suddenly stops. He hears something in the woods so they split up.
The guards are chasing KC through the woods. KC pleads that he doesn’t want to fight them. They throw paralysis powder in his face but when KC doesn’t fall, one of them asks,”Is he a monster? How can he stand all that powder?” The head guard orders him to take KC in without hurting him.
While KC is not completely paralyzed, he is weakened and he falls after pushing away the guards. YW drops in on the scene and asks why they are attacking someone who doesn’t even have a weapon to protect himself. The guards tell her to mind her own business but YW wants to know if they are the same people who have been murdering others around this area recently. The guards just tell her once again to leave but YW replies, “Sorry but I always see through what I butted into.”
YW and the guards fight while KC struggles to remain focused. YW grabs KC and they run while Gon arrives to hold back the guards. One of them gets away to chase after YW and KC.
SJ is watching the inn.
PJ is saying to MS that he sent two people he trusts to MS’s inn.
As YW and KC run through the forest, YW’s hat falls and her hair becomes loose. In his confused state, KC thinks YW is CJ.
The guard has caught up to YW and CJ and he moves to strike YW with his sword. KC swiftly turns YW around, protecting her and stabbing the guard. The guard falls and KC has his arm around YW. He caresses her cheek as he says, “Don’t worry. I, Kang Chi, will protect you.” KC then faints in YW’s arms. Blue lights start to float around them.
YW notices something. It is a peach tree with a crescent moon rising right about it. She thinks, “A crescent moon is hanging from a peach tree.” She remembers SJ’s words about avoiding the person she meets at that tree. YW looks at KC and then back at the tree. Blue lights fill the air as YW and KC hold each other.
Episode 4 Preview
KC: Do you know me or have we met before?
KC: Will you guietly go or will you experience my anger?
GW: How dare you!
KC: If I remember it, will it become meaningful?
YW: What if I don’t avoid that fated relationship? What if I am unable to?
Lee Seung Gi and Suzy have my stamp of approval. Their acting is much better than I expected and their chemistry works. One thing I am noting is how much younger this drama feels now with Lee Seung Gi, Suzy, and Lee Yoo Bi on screen. Gu Family Book feels very young to me this episode compared to the first two, with the older Choi Jin Hyuk gracing the screen. Lee Yeon Hee, while young, was still playing a mature role. Also there was a lot of painful scenes in the first two episodes while today, things were a lot lighter and cuter. I don’t think we can have Lee Seung Gi without the cute because he is just a puppy so I was expecting this overall for the drama but after the first two heavy episodes, I guess I forgot. Since it is only the beginning, there is a huge possibility that the drama will get darker as Kang-chi finds out who he really is. The knowledge is probably going to catapult him into maturity so I hope it doesn’t get too serious at that point either.
I also felt a lot of chemistry between Lee Yoo Bi and Lee Seung Gi, which is also good news, because that means there is going to be a real, viable opponent to Kang-chi and Yeo-wool’s love story. It’s better than having a dead second lead who you don’t know why she is even a remote possibility for the hero’s affection. Kang-chi and Chung-jo’s love story might actually be the main plot in another drama with their forbidden love across class lines.
I was most pleased with Mu-sol, Tae-seo, and Chung-jo’s characters. I expected one of the siblings to be petty, or both of them, and Mu-sol to be a greedy, evil villain who only took in Kang-chi for the fortune and didn’t plan to really take care of him. But it seems that Mu-sol, Tae-seo, and Chung-jo really care about Kang-chi. It’s going to be interesting to see how will these “good” people react when the misfortune falls on them and the situation changes.
I’m also excited to see Sung Joon as Gon, the faithful bodyguard to Yeo-wool. It’s without a doubt that he likes her which puts him squarely in the silent, brooding secondary guy with a good heart category. With his presence, I feel that the world of Gu Family Book is nicely populated with main and side characters, all with a different stake in the story.
And Yeo-wool as the sword-wielding, fist-flying young girl preoccupied with finding a boyfriend? Cute.