Wow, so a bit of perseverance and some patience really does pay off. This was the best episode of 49 Days to date, with some solid plot developments, character interactions, and wonderfully executed fantasy elements sprinkled here and there. I can do without that Darth Vadar-esque voice constantly broadcasting the remaining time left for Ji Hyun (can’t we have some screen titles for that), but that’s such a minor quibble.
I knew if we got more Yi Kyung scenes everything would start moving forward quickly. Hopefully by tomorrow’s episode all the secrets and character backgrounds will be fully revealed, and we can spend the latter half of the drama working through the complicated mess that surrounds both Ji Hyun and Yi Kyung, respectively.
Episode 7 Recap:
Min Ho offers Ji Kyung a job as his housekeeper, asking if she knows how to cook and clean. Ji Kyung asks how much he is going to pay her, giving Min Ho a piercing look and calmly accepts his offer. Her quick acceptance is a little unsettling for Min Ho, but Ji Kyung tells him that he offered her just a job and she’s accepting. Her work hours start at 11 a.m.
Min Ho asks why she’s so quick to accept, since she dislikes him. She tells him that he clearly has never wanted for money before, and a person looking for a job can’t be too picky. He writes down his address and tells her to come tomorrow at 11 a.m. She asks about whether he needs to go to work, and Min Ho says that he doesn’t want to give a stranger the keys to his house. He tells her to think about her salary and work requirements, and not to be late tomorrow.
Ji Kyung turns and walks away, crumpling up the paper with the address and tossing it away. When Min Ho yells at her, she spits out his address, as if she had immediately memorized it. Ji Kyung is awesome in a way Ji Hyun could never be, and I really do believe it’s because she doesn’t give a damn anymore. Ji Kyung thinks to herself – don’t worry oppa, I will be there.
She thinks back to Min Ho’s call during the car ride, and she knows that something is up. She can earn money and spy on Min Ho, killing two birds with one stone. Min Ho drives off, thinking to himself that no one has ever looked at him with such contempt before, and he wants to see how long Ji Kyung can keep with her haughty disdainful attitude towards him. Ji Kyung watches Min Ho drive away, knowing that Min Ho hired her so that he can put her in her place. She realizes that Min Ho is the type of person who cannot accept even the littlest bit of criticism and ridicule.
Kang is sitting outside the restaurant, and the manager points out that it doesn’t appear that Song Yi Kyung is coming back this time. Kang says that he doesn’t regret it, and doesn’t care about it. The manager tells Kang that an architecture professor is interested in engaging him to design a project, and Kang replies that he’s busy these days. The manager tells him not to waste his life selling wine and pasta, unless he took over his mom’s restaurant for that purpose.
Ji Kyung runs to a restaurant, worried that she’s late. She calls up the friend she was supposed to meet, and finds out that the friend is too busy to come, and too busy for Ji Kyung to go see her. The friend hangs up and Ji Kyung realizes that the friend is just not willing to do anything for Ji Hyun. Ji Kyung yells her anger at the friend, and then teeters because she is both hungry and her stomach hurts.
Ji Kyung sits down at the restaurant and scarfs down all the food, and is still hungry. She worries about ordering more because she has to pay here, whereas it was all you can eat at Kang’s place. But then she worries about Yi Kyung’s bad eating habits, so she orders another bowl and cheers herself up to keep going forward in her task at hand. Ji Kyung goes back to the apartment early and lays down to rest.
Kang meets with the project that is interested in hiring him, and he doesn’t want to work with the person who is not interested in doing a proper construction and instead wants Kang to slap on some pretty exterior and build a view-blocking eyesore. Night falls and Yi Kyung wakes up well before midnight, which alarms Ji Hyun. Yi Kyun sees the time and quickly runs outside.
Kang is walking in the neighborhood and criticizing the project he turned down under his breath. He sees Yi Kyung running into a convenience store. He makes a move to go towards her, but decides against it and gets into his car (oh shucks, I would have loved Kang to meet the real Yi Kyung). Yi Kyung calls the convenience store shye works at to apologize for not coming to work last night, and receives the likely news that she is fired.
Yi Kyung goes back to her apartment, where Ji Hyun adorably blathers that she will keep eating porridge until her unni feels better. Yi Kyung lays down and closes her eyes, and Ji Hyun wonders if Yi Kyung is really that tired. Kang is in bed, and thinks back to Ji Kyung’s last words to him – that he shouldn’t feel bad, and she will be fine. He can’t sleep and sits up.
Its morning time and Ji Hyun gets a reminder that there is 38 days left. She’s frantic because Yi Kyung is suddenly awake during the day, and Ji Hyun really needs to go to Min Ho’s house to work. Min Ho is at home waiting for Ji Kyung to arrive. Scheduler shows up and tells Ji Hyun that Yi Kyung lost her job because of Ji Hyun. He reminds her that Yi Kyung is the owner of the body, Ji Hyun just borrows it. Ji Hyun says that she knows, but she’s still worried that if Yi Kyung never goes to sleep, then Ji Hyun can never leave the apartment. Min Ho looks at the watch which shows that its noon, and he’s a little annoyed that Ji Kyung didn’t show up.
Min Ho goes to work, and he runs into In Jung at the elevator. She gets in with him, asking if he’s just arriving at work right now. In Jung tells him that she is back from the hospital after getting the papers, and wants to have lunch with him. Min Ho calmly reminds her that this is the public workplace, and she wonders if they have to be careful since it’s just the two of them inside the elevator, and the CCTV doesn’t pick up sound. He says that they have always done things that way, right?
In Jung flashes back to one night back in college when she was outside, talking to her mom on the phone, explaining that she already works three jobs and not to come to her for more money. In Jung is suddenly grabbed from behind and shoved into a car. Min Ho happens to see the abduction, and he chases after the car, taking shortcuts, until he catches up to the car. In Jung has been beaten by her abductors, but Min Ho manages to stop the car and save her.
In Jung is cowering on the street, and Min Ho asks if she’s alright? She’s frightened and he patches her up at the nearby park. She asks if he lives around here, and he explains that he comes here twice a week to go mountain climbing. He walks her home, and she asks how to contact him if she wants to thank him properly. She introduces herself as Shin In Jung, and he gives her his number and his name. In Jung looks at the hankerchief from that incident years ago. Min Ho comes to see In Jung at her desk, telling her not to look at him with those hurt eyes, he’ll feel bad. He reminds that he’ll sign a new contract soon and that everything will be over then.
Ji Hyun’s father tells the doctor that he doesn’t want to do his own surgery, since there is no guarantee. The doctor says that if he refuses, the doctor will tell his wife the truth about Ji Hyun’s dad’s medical condition. The doctor says that Ji Hyun has no hope, so he should treat himself and then take care of his wife. Ji Hyun’s father gets upset and clutches his head in pain.
Ji Hyun’s dad heads back to the hospital room, seeing that his wife is massaging Ji Hyun. He doesn’t tell his wife about his condition. Ji Hyun’s mom wonders if perhaps they should be the first to discuss ending the engagement between Min Ho and Ji Hyun.
Min Ho signs the land sale deal, and he’s told that after the deal closes, his part is done. The rest is up to the other shady guy to handle. Min Ho goes to the restaurant to see Kang, who is sleeping on the sofa of his office. Min Ho remarks that Kang is sure like his father. Min Ho asks if it’s true that Kang fired Yi Kyung? Kang confirms, and Min Ho changes the subject to request that Kang not leave the project and continue with the design.
He pulls the Ji Hyun would have wanted this trump card. He tells Kang that he expects to see Kang at the announcement party next weekend. Kang tells the manager that it was because of Min Ho that Kang survived when he was in the States, which explains why Kang is so nice to Min Ho. After Min Ho leaves, he sits in his car, and it’s clear he came not just to see Kang, but to see if Ji Kyung showed up at the restaurant.
Yi Kyung finally falls asleep, and Ji Hyun takes over the body. She wonders why Yi Kyung lives like this, and she flashbacks to the conversation between Yi Kyung and Dr. Noh. She starts to rummage through Yi Kyung’s box, looking for a photo album or something like that. Suddenly Yi Kyung awakens and Ji Hyun’s spirit is pushed out of the body. Yi Kyung looks around and realizes that she’s not where she feel sleep, she’s wearing different clothes, and that someone has rummaged through her box.
Yi Kyung’s eyes widen in shock. Dr. Noh shows up outside Yi Kyung’s apartment, carrying the now dried up rose. Yi Kyung keeps thinking back to all those clues that indicate she has not been in full control of her body (her hair, her twisted ankle, the new bruises on her legs, the landlady saying she saw her yesterday, etc.). Yi Kyung wonders what the hell is going on with herself?
Yi Kyung smiles, and says that she’s tired, she’s sick and tired of this! She grabs a thin rope and starts to string it up. Ji Hyun starts to freak out and tries to stop Yi Kyung, then she frantically dials Scheduler. He asks whether Yi Kyung is trying to kill herself (again), and tells Ji Hyun not to interfere. Ji Hyun keeps apologizes and crying to Yi Kyung. Just as Yi Kyung is about to slip the noose over her head, Dr. Noh shows up and starts pounding on the door.
Yi Kyung finally halts her suicide attempt and goes to open the door since Dr. Noh is threatening to break it down. She goes outside and asks what he wants. He hands her the single dead rose, saying that he’s here to return it, since it appears to be very important to her. She asks why he’s doing all this for her? He says that he wants to make sure that she is fine. Yi Kyung takes the rose, and Dr. Noh hands her hiscard, telling her to call any time she want to talk.
Yi Kyung goes back inside and looks at the rose. She appears to have given up her suicide attempt, and she walks back to sit against the wall in her usual morose state. Ji Hyun talks to Yi Kyung, thanking her for not killing herself, and telling Yi Kyung that she is so very envious of Yi Kyung have a healthy body, being able to touch things, being able to talk to people and have them hear her voice. Ji Hyun begs Yi Kyung to please be strong, so that Ji Hyun has a chance to live again.
Another day passes. Kang brings flowers and visits with Ji Hyun at the hospital. Yet another day passes, and another day passes, where all Ji Hyun can do is sit in the apartment and watch Yi Kyung eat ramyun and sleep. Min Ho presents the land sale papers to Ji Hyun’s dad. Another day passes, and Ji Hyun is down to only 34 days left. Ji Hyun screams at Scheduler, telling him to do something. Scheduler initially says that he is not allowed to interfere, but then gets fed up with Ji Hyun’s whining, and calls his sunbae to see if there is anything he can do, such as perhaps an option #3?
Scheduler searches on his phone for the perfect job for Yi Kyung (at night, coffee shop, nearby), and he goes to the coffee shop dressed like some hippie slacker. He orders coffee with an affected air, pays with only coin, and tries to convince the owner to hire another employee for the night shift. He tells the owner that there are people close to him who died recently, and next up is the owner…… Suddenly Scheduler tells him that if he hired a woman employee younger than thirty, doesn’t like to smile, then the owner can live longer.
Yi Kyung heads outside, but not before tossing away a flyer shoved into her mail slot which is advertising a new job. On her walk, she doesn’t notice that there is a line of flyers beside her on the wall, and as she walks past, the flyers magically disappear. Yi Kyung goes to the convenience store to buy more ramyun, and she turns and sees the same want ad again. This time she actually reads it, and that night she heads to the coffee shop to apply for a job.
The owner sees Yi Kyung, and immediately hires her, asking if she can start work today. What’s cute is that Yi Kyung holds out the magical flyer, but the owner can’t see it, so it looks like she’s extending an empty hand. Scheduler and Ji Hyun watch as Yi Kyung is being trained inside the coffee shop. Ji Hyun asks Scheduler if he can investigate Yi Kyung’s background. Ji Hyun can see how lonely Yi Kyung is and she wants to help her.
With 33 days left, Ji Kyung finally makes her reappearance and she runs off to Min Ho’s apartment for her job. He asks where she has been for the past 5 days, and she just says that she is busy. She goes inside and he gets her phone number and tells her to wait until he comes home tonight. He needs to know that she’s done a good job.
Ji Kyung abandons all cleaning to start searching his file for any incriminating or revealing documents. Ji Hyun realizes that Min Ho is so thorough he’ll likely not leave important documents in such obvious places. In Jung is surprised to see Seo Woo still at home, and Seo Woo wants to go to the hospital to visit Ji Hyun. In Jung says that she can’t go because she’s busy, and Seo Woo correctly guesses that In Jung has a boyfriend. Seo Woo says that Ji Hyun would be so happy for In Jung, but In Jung doesn’t want Seo Woo to keep mentioning Ji Hyun.
Ji Kyung finds a photo album that contains all the couple’s pictures of Min Ho and In Jung, and the date stamp on the pictures indicates that the relationship went back as far as 2006, even before Min Ho left to study abroad. Ji Kyung is further disheartened to realize the extent of Min Ho and In Jung’s entire scheme. Min Ho is at work but Ji Kyung remains on his mind.
Ji Kyung tries out the door code and realizes that it’s still set to Ji Hyun’s birthday, which makes her upset but at least this means she can leave the apartment. Kang has been dragged outside to do stretching exercises by the manager. Ji Kyung comes running back, saying that she’s here for her last day’s salary. Kang asks her to think about whether she worked that last day, and she realizes she didn’t.
Ji Kyung gets right in Kang’s face and calls her Han Kang-shhi, saying that since she’s not his employee anymore, she can dispense with the honorifics. She’s here today as a paying pasta-eating customer. Ji Kyung is eating with the manager’s wife, and she tells her that she found a job already. Ji Kyung confesses that her heart does feel more at ease when working here.
Ji Kyung walks out, telling Kang that she paid. Kang yells inside that he told them not to let her pay. But Ji Kyung refuses to be treated like a beggar, and reminds Kang again that she is not interested in Min Ho. Ji Kyung leaves, and the other waitress comes running out with the mistaken assumption that Ji Kyung works at a nightclub (with flexible hours, easy pay, etc.). Kang looks totally worried and runs after Ji Kyung, but she’s hiding from him.
Ji Kyung looks at Kang, thanking him from the bottom of her heart, knowing that even if he’s worried about Yi Kyung, it makes her want to get closer to him. Min Ho looks at his watch, and finally decides to head back to his apartment. He gets a call from In Jung, who reminds him that he was supposed to have dinner with her today to celebrate the closing of the deal.
Min Ho makes an excuse that he’s in a meeting and really busy. In Jung is so getting blown off by Min Ho that it’s pretty hilarious. Ji Kyung looks through the refrigerator but can’t find anything to make dinner with. In Jung heads to Min Ho’s apartment and enters after punching in the code. In Jung enters and sees Ji Kyung – two women who have no reason or right to be in Min Ho’s apartment stare at each other.
Thoughts of Mine:
I’ve come to the conclusion that that the lead of 49 Days is squarely Lee Yo Won (pulling double duty with double the screen time of everyone else), whereas the other five main actors may have slightly less but equal screen time, but plot-wise all play a pivotal and unique roll. With this in mind, OTP considerations remain completely in the air. For example – right now I can see Kang-Ji Hyun, Dr. Noh-Yi Kyung, and Min Ho-In Jung, but then musical chairs with fantasy elements thrown in can alter the outcome any which way. Just sayin’ that with this drama, the answer is not so clear cut at this point.
I really liked this episode (it has some choppy editing but the OST is growing on me nicely), and it really emphasized Ji Hyun’s continued emotional and mental growth during her ordeal. Both her consideration and worry for Yi Kyung, and how she handles Min Ho and Kang, makes me really enjoy her character more and more. Nam Gyu Ri has also settled into her role, and she has a lovely rapport with Jung Il Woo’s Scheduler.
Lee Yo Won continues to own both roles, displaying more screen presence here than in some of her other dramas I’ve watched, where she tended to fade, especially playing against actors with more gravitas. For now, I’m just thrilled that Yi Kyung is getting a clue, and hopefully that is the catalyst to get her out of her perpetual funk.
Too bad Min Ho is such a horrible human being, and I’m not just talking about his misdeeds vis-à-vis Ji Hyun’s father, but his self-righteous and self-absorbed personality making him a total turn-off for me, regardless of his chemistry with either In Jung or Ji Kyung.
It goes to show how fall Min Ho has fallen in my esteem (not that he had much from me in the first place since he was initially such a wet noodle) that I’m even wondering if In Jung’s abduction back in college and Min Ho’s so coincidental presence wasn’t all a set up from the get go as a way to ensure Min Ho got an ally who was close to Ji Hyun.
Sadly, the more I get to know of Kang, the less I like him as a character. I know, I is so sad about this, since I’m watching this drama for Jo Hyun Jae. I don’t really like guys like Kang in real life – he may be all-sorts of decent and wonderful inside, but he cannot for the life of him be honest and forthcoming when it comes to matters of the heart. So he’s confused about his strange interest and concern for Song Yi Kyung? So what? He a fully-grown adult and should just be honest about it and see where it goes.
I can understand why he has issues being nice to adult Ji Hyun, after their high school history together and Ji Hyun being with Min Ho now, but Yi Kyung is some random girl. Yes, she mentioned before that she has a fiancée, but then she also said she caught her fiancée with another woman. I guess it all boils down to – I’ve seen Jo Hyun Jae play characters who can’t say what he really means to the girl he’s interested in without having an apoplexy, and I’m pretty tired by it. Plus, dude, how old are you, just stop it with the “say what you don’t mean” shit.
Other than that, Kang is a total doll, and the only (still alive) male character that I totally approve of for either Ji Hyun or Yi Kyung. I think the drama is finally starting to ramp up the tension and stakes, as Ji Hyun has a little over 30 days left to obtain her three pure tears, and Yi Kyung is not as much of a discombobulated zombie anymore. Scheduler contains to provide the laughs, but I’m pretty sure we’re getting his back story tomorrow.