18 vs 29 – Episode 1

The opening scenes are a series of flashbacks between the current time and the previous decade.

Actor Kang Sang-young (Ryu Soo Young) is swarmed by reporters as he and his costar Shin Ji-young (Park Eun Hye) attend a viewing of their current drama.  He doesn’t know that his  wife, Yoo Hye-chan (Park Sun Young) is heading for Family Court with divorce papers.  At the press conference, he evades scurrilous and pointed questions regarding him and Ji-young from a persistent paparazzi.  There is a back scene, however, where Ji-young confessed to his wife that she is in love with Sang-young.  I guess the triangle gets established early!


Hye-chan thinks back to the confession and the recent arguments between her and her spouse. Suddenly, there is an accident due to her distraction, and Hye-chan is transported to the hospital with a head injury.  Sang-young gets the news and bolts from the press conference, leaving his manager to do damage control.

Flashback to Hye-chan’s high school days, with the typical running-late-dodging-the-truant-officer.  She almost gets away, until she trips on an extension cord left on the sidewalk by Kang Bong-man (Choi Si-won).  During her punishment, she sees her crush, Soo Young, walk by.   Later on, she bumps into Bong-man in the theater offices, establishing the friction between the two teens.  Bong-man crushes her best friend’s confession to him, and Hye-chan throws a chalkboard eraser.  Bong-man ducks, it smacks the truant officer in the face, she turns to run and “BAM!” – a mop hits her in the face and knocks her out.


When Sang-young shows up at the hospital, we get a nice segue from one Hye-chan to the other:


While Hye-chan is puzzled at this strange ahjussi yelling at her in the hospital, her younger sister, Hye-won (Jo Eun Ji) shows up.  She doesn’t recognize Hye-won either, and they bring the attending physician in.  After a battery of tests, including a CAT Scan and flash cards (A Lion – ROAR!), the doctor is puzzled.  Nothing physically is wrong, so they are just going to have to wait until her memory returns, if ever.

Outside the hospital room, Hye-won accuses Sang-young of causing this due to the stresses he put on Hye-chan in their married life.   He promises to take care of her, and the admission girls squee over him as he pays the hospital bill and arranges the discharge.  We also find out that Sang-young and Bong-man are the same person.

In the hospital room, Hye-chan hears the one-sided conversation between Sang-young and his manager, and envisions him as a gangster, especially after glimpsing his chest tattoos (which are temporary from his drama shoot, but rawr anyway…).


She sneaks out of the hospital in his trench coat, leading a merry chase through the streets.  Sang-young goes from the hunter to the hunted as screaming fangirls begin pursuing him, and she escapes him by jumping on a bus.  The bus driver looks at her appearance and decides it’s better to let her think she gets a student discount.

Hye-won meets up with Sang-young’s younger brother, Kang Bong-kyu (Lee Sang Woo), who also informs her that The Dictator (aka Grandfather) is planning a visit soon.  Both of their reactions tell me this is definitely not a good thing.

Hye-chan jumps off the bus in front of her old high school, thinking that she is late for class.

A student is cleaning a mop and bucket.  It’s Kim Noon (Lee Joong Moon), but she mistakes him for her high school nemesis Bong-man and smacks him.  She realizes her mistake about the time that Sang-young shows up at the school (how did he know she would be there?).  Ducking behind the student, she convinces him to help her hide from the ‘gangster’ chasing her.


Kim Noon has problems of his own, in the form of crazy stalker and class bully Lee Eun-ji (Jung Da Hye), who photographs his book bag and contents for her Noon fanpage.  He warns her to stop posting photos and takes his gym clothes back to Hye-chan.  She joins a rousing game of soccerball, much to the confusion of everyone else there.  The previous teacher is still there, and escorts her off the property.

She ends up at her old home, and when ringing the doorbell doesn’t work, she climbs the wall and lets herself in.  The current homeowner catches her, and she ends up at the police station, and spins a tale of gangsters locking her up in a hospital and chasing her.  A frantic Sang-young and Hye-won make it to the station, and the officer is grateful to get Hye-chan off his hands.

Sang-young contacts Ji-young to let the director know he’ll be late to get back to the set.  Ji-young tries to pump Manager Ahn for information on Hye-chan, but he deflects it.  The director is not happy and ready to start filming without him, but Ji-young tells him she has to wait for her wardrobe.


Hye-won stays with Hye-chan at her house and tries to jog her memory.  The last thing Hye-chan remembers is the mop incident 11 years ago.  Hye-won shows her a birthmark to confirm she is her younger sister, and explains to her that she is married at twenty-nine years old.  She freaks out and asks about her mother; Hye-won says she left for America a while ago, but looks guilty when she says this.

At the set, Sang-young apologizes to everyone including the director, for holding the shoot up.  At the end of the shoot, Ji-young uses this as an opportunity to give him some up-close sympathy.  And to try and get some information on his wife.  He deflects most of it and heads home with Manager Ahn driving and nagging.


Hye-won looks at her sleeping sister and suddenly remembers that Grandfather was going to show up today, prompting her to wake her up and force her to get ready for the invasion.  Hye-chan still can’t believe what she sees in the mirror,  and ends up slumped in the bathroom and feeling depressed.

Sang-young makes it home, but Hye-won has to leave to correct a crisis at her school.  She tells him about the imminent visit of his grandfather.  He leaves some clothes by the bathroom door as Grandfather pulls up to the house (black car, black clothes, dark night, ominous).  Bong-kyu comes to the door first.


Hye-chan pretends to be asleep and Sang-young and Bong-kyu make excuses for her.  Once Grandfather leaves, though, Hye-chan confronts Sang-young:  Is he the same Bong-man that messed up her life at Myung  Song High?  When he answers in the affirmative, she reaches for a photo frame to throw at him, but looks at it and realizes it’s her and him.  In wedding attire.

Kang Bong-man and her?  Married?


About Shukmeister

I have a great fondness for chocolate chip cookie dough, 80's science fiction movies, and thunderstorms.

Posted on August 13, 2012, in 18 vs 29 (2005) and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. IT”S HERE!!!
    I love your recapping style. It’s breezy and flows beautifully.
    I do enjoy watching this drama (I’m up to episode 10 now) and I’ll be following your recaps to be reminded of all the wonderful scenes I’ve watched.

    Thanks Shuk!
    I’m glad we’re watching this drama together.

  2. Nice! Hehe. Not watching the show but will sure come back to read some good prose. You really recap like a novelist. [The zebra can’t change its stripes.] 🙂

  3. Congrats, Shukmeister. Great job of putting your writing skills to good use for all of us drama lovers! I may have to pick this drama up before a couple of the new ones start.

    • Thank you, Korazy. Now I have my current fiction, recaps, and my nephew’s manucript on my plate. My hair would be turning gray if it wasn’t already white!

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