18 vs 29 – Episode 16 (Final)
So now Hye-chan has no recollection of when she thought she was 18 again, but remembers when she was originally 18 again. Confused? You bet I am!
Episode 16 (Final)
Hye-chan is in the hospital after her taxicab was T-boned on her way home, and she wakes up to a headache, 29, and no remembrance of reverting to her 18 year old self. The couple leave the hospital, and she is very cool to her husband, disbelieving that they had fallen back in love. His sappy, heartfelt ways fail to impress her. Irregardless, she still plans to leave him and leave Korea.
On the drive home, she makes fun of the keychain on the rear view mirror, and is surprised her sister is getting married. She wants to start packing right away, but finds some surprising items in the office, namely her most recent, handwritten diary. She gets little flashes: wrapping Sang-young in bandages, meeting Kim Noon, and it spooks her enough to feel jumpy as she continues to pack. Sang-young gets a request from Manager Ahn to meet up with him. Sang-young calls his sister-in-law and updates her on Hye-chan’s condition as he heads out. Hye-chan is perched on the couch, trying to think about the two Sang-youngs: the grouchy diva versus the playful husband. She realizes the trouble she’s caused him throughout her memory flip-flops. It appears she now remembers her entire life story, but decides to pretend she still has holes in her memory. [Thank you, for not stretching out the secondary…tertiary?…memory loss card]
Manager Ahn is still pressing for Sang-young to continue the movie deal, but he is adamant that he wants to put his marriage before his career, and stick with plays and live theater for now. Hye-won and Bong-gyu show up at their house and cook dinner. Hye-chan continues to pretend she still has memory gaps. She promises to stay at the house until their wedding. Sang-young arrives, and the meal is so good Hye-chan blurts out it was better than Bong-man’s birthday this year…no no she meant last year!
After dinner, Sang-young trots out Kim Noon’s heartfelt video, and she lets slip the details of the filming. So the cat is out of the bag, and everyone is secretly glad she knows all. Im Ok meets up with the engaged couple for dinner, and she asks, are they willing to come with her to America? Sadly, the couple says no; Grandfather would be devastated. Im Ok compliments him on raising her children to be good men, and she gives Bong-gyu a fierce hug.
At the house, Sang-young starts the greatest acting of his life, and tells Hye-chan that the real estate agent is coming by to begin the process of selling the house and splitting the marital assets., and turns on the puppy-dog look. She goes to the office and wonders if she should tell him her memory is intact, when she gets the phone call from Hye-won. She meets up with her mother-in-law, and tells her she’s going to be a grandmother. Im Ok beams, and gives her the wedding band that Sang-young’s father gave her. Hye-chan asks if she can stay, at least until the marriage, but she gently refuses.
Hye-chan comes home to a bassinet with all the trimmings in the office. The card from Sang-young asks that they stay together, the three of them. Finally, our couple has a heart to heart conversation. She asks, where’s the rude impatient man she married? And he replies, are you sure you weren’t faking the memory loss just to get me in trouble? While settling down for the night, Sang-young asks her why she pretended her memory was still spotty, and why did she plan to leave again?
H: I felt like I was getting in your way. If I only hadn’t lost my memory, you wouldn’t be having such a hard time, and I thought perhaps you were living with me out of obligation and not love.
S: Oh, you dummy.
Sang-young makes her promise to always tell him how she feels, and knock heads together as a prelude to happier times. There’s a montage of them playing in a baby store, arguing over wedding rings for their siblings, and generally enjoying themselves.
The engaged couple go to DefCon One, and visit the grandparents. They bring gifts and announce that Hye-won is pregnant. The incredulous look on Grandfather’s face is comical, but the door rings. It’s Sang-young and Hye-chan who truthfully announce they are pregnant. Grandmother announces a double-lucky day, and the grandparents offer to pay for the honeymoon. Bong-gyu tells him they want to honeymoon in America, and The Dictator storms off. Hye-chan follows him, and explains how she feels as an expectant mother, and how devastated she would be if she didn’t see her children for 25 years.
Sang-young and Bong-gyu also talk, and the younger one says he knew Im Ok was her mother the moment he saw her, even though he had no memories. He wants to share some good times with his mother, leaving Sang-young something to ruminate about. At home, Hye-chan convinces him to come with her to the airport to see his mother off, but he opts to stay in the car rather than meet them. Ji-young accompanies Im Ok to the airport. Enough said about her.
On her way back from the bathroom, Im Ok is surprised to see Sang-young running towards her. She politely thanks him, then is startled when he calls her “Mom”. He speaks to her back as she cries:
S: I wasn’t mad about you coming. It was just that you were late…that’s why I was mad.
And he asks her to stay for the wedding. At the mansion, Grandfather is looking through a pile of airmail letters. It turns out their mother had been sending letters that he hid from his grandchildren.
It’s the usual wedding festivities: flower arrangements, stringed instruments, and photographs with the bride. Manager Ahn shows up and gives her one last time, which she gleefully turns down. Grandfather finds Im Ok hiding behind the flowers, and he gruffly tells her to get into the hall. And the wedding goes off without a hitch.
Later on, Sang-young and Hyej-chan meet up with the dukbokki halmeoni and over bulgogi, tell her about the baby. She gives them some good advice and they exchange sappy smiles. Outside the shop, they meet up with Kim Noon, and Sang-young graciously backs out, citing a meeting, and the pair talk in the park. She tells Kim Noon she made a lot of trouble, but she made a good friend, who helped her restore the confidence she lost after the miscarriage and the marital problems. Kim Noon tells her she’s lost that spark of innocence, but she gently chastises him, since he promised her he would always see her as 18. He smiles as they separate, but later he writes that he will always remember the movie and the times they shared.
Sang-young finds what he thinks is Hye-chan’s story of their relationship, and starts reading it, only to find out it’s the male lead “Bong-su” who dies in an accident. He’s still sobbing when Hye-chan appears. He asks her why the lead couldn’t say he loved her before he died, and she reminds him of his behavior. He adorably stutters trying to say “I love you”, then attacks the ending as unrealistic. She agrees and shoulders him aside to sit down at the desk. He tries to entice her to stop working and rest, but she rebuffs him, until he finally snaps, turning off the laptop mid-type, and he bursts out: What is more important, her baby or her work? That earns a well-deserved Death Glare as Hye-chan stands up and stalks out. Sang-young comes out to the living room and asks Hye-chan to go outside with him for a moment. They go to the exercise yard of their old school, and under a tree, he buries their honeymoon keepsakes and promises they will be together forever. She finally cracks a smile. Sitting on the stone steps, Sang-young and Hye-chan finally talk:
S: Hae-chan, for you, I’m going to reduce the number of times I’ll get mad. And I’ll quit smoking for you, and for the first time, I told the world that I, too, have a woman. But is there still something left that you want to hear from me?
H: No…what’ so important about words. It’s more important to confirm it once in a while.
S: So, you made all that trouble to confirm it, didn’t you?
H: You never know. That’s a secret only the heavens and earth will know.
They end up cutely chasing each other around the yard. And their thoughts speak over the playfulness. Hye-chan states if she hadn’t become 18 again, she would never have realized that he supported her dreams. And Sang-young believes that her 18-year-old self helped him realize she would always be the keeper of his heart and his most precious memories.
Some time later… Hye-chan finishes her manuscript, appropriately titled “18 vs 29” and takes it around the different studios. It finally gets accepted by the Producer Aunt. Meanwhile, Sang-young is trying to learn to cook, and failing miserably, but cutely at it.
Hye-chan shows up as he is collecting beans scattered all over the floor, and announces that her screenplay was accepted and he had the lead. He tells her he doesn’t want too, so she plays the ‘cry to the baby’ ploy. Next scene, he (and She Who Must Not Be Named) are filming together, while Hye–chan bugs the PD. Suddenly, filming is cut short when Hye-chan’s labor pains begin. And she’s adorable! Of course, it’s Sang-young’s job to amuse the baby while mommy is busy with her writing. She comes out of the office and they share a final family hug.
Well, I’m finally done with my first ever complete recap! I didn’t realize how tough it can be to make it comprehensive and a fun read without bogging down in the minutiae. Hats off to all of those out there who dedicate the time and effort every week to this endeavor. I’m glad that everything came to a fairly satisfying ending, with a few gripes. I thought the Ji-young’s two-faced and manipulative side should have been exposed and she be, at the very least, privately immolated by Sang-young and Hye-chan. It doesn’t seem as though they forgave her, just that she wasn’t worth the effort to bother with anymore. Still, a falling-to-the-floor-crying scene would have made my inner demon happy. [sigh] As this was an early effort by several of the actors, I really enjoyed the ranges they did play. Without knowing about Korean fashion sense back in 2005, I found the clothes to be a bit campy and too colorful, especially in the more serious scenes. When all was said and done, though, I’m glad I watched it to the end, if only for those glimpses of a fresh-faced Cha Siwon [shifty eyes].
Posted on December 16, 2012, in 18 vs 29 (2005) and tagged 18 vs 29, kDrama, Korean Drama, Park Eun-hye, Park Min-ji, Park Sun-young, Recap, Ryu Soo-young, sinopsis. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.