I love how Nice Guy continues to adjust my expectations and fiddle with my feelings. When the drama first started, I found Maru and Jae Hee fascinating while Eun Gi felt like an awkward third wheel shoehorned into the proceedings. As the drama progressed, I grew fascinated with Eun Gi while my disgust with both Maru and Jae Hee grew, wishing those two would take their money and mind games somewhere else and let innocent Eun Gi off the hook. But seeing how much Eun Gi was captivated by Maru and the extent she would go to fight for a chance to be with him, coupled with seeing Maru so reluctantly and unexpectedly affected by Eun Gi, the drama took a turn towards a traditional love story that make me root for the OTP against all odds. Memory-loss or not, subdural hematoma or no, Eun Gi and Maru have reunited after their fateful accident finally able to enjoy the time they spend together.
Maru knows he’s on borrowed time, either he dies sooner or later or Eun Gi regains her memory and decides she hates his guts. Until then, he dares to be happy with her, whether for a day or maybe even a year, for however long they have together. That just makes me want to sob at the unfairness of all, except Maru doesn’t think it’s unfair. He appears to accept it stoically, like a penance he has to pay for hurting Eun Gi before. Seeing how much he loves her must truly cut Jae Hee to the core, because while she can accept Maru walking away from her, it must never have crossed her mind that Maru could genuinely love another woman with the depth and breadth of emotion he gave to Jae Hee. What gives me hope is that Maru has regained at least the will to live, and that is all because of Eun Gi. But what price he needs to pay remains to be seen.
Episode 13 recap:
Maru is in the shower, giving us a fanservice shower scene that for once I’m not particularly keen on since happy scenes just make me dread the sad ones to come. He gets out and stares at the fogged up mirror in the bathroom. He reaches out a finger and writes “Happiness” on the steam, staring at it with a smile before wiping it away with his palm.
Eun Gi is cooking in the kitchen, adorably mussed and making a mess as she tries to cook and remind herself of the names of the items in the kitchen. As she’s stirring a pot, she remembers the doctor telling her to try hard and retrieve her most painful memories.
She suddenly flashes back to the tunnel moment when she veered her car into Maru’s lane. She sees the other car, her reflection in the rear view mirror, and there is a person inside, but his face is obscured.
Maru walks up behind her and grabs her shoulder, then reaches out to put his hand over hers and help her stir the pot before the food burns. He’s pleased that she’s cooking by herself, commenting that’s she’s “grown up now.” Maru asks where everyone else went and Eun Gi says Choco went out with Jae Gil. Maru suggests Eun Gi visit the company to say hi to the employees next week and she nods.
Eun Gi confesses that she’s feeling very scared. Eun Gi wonders if Maru will leave her when grows tired by her, but he promises and assures her that he would never do that. Eun Gi isn’t so sure about the human heart, to which Maru assures her that he knows his own heart. He will never dislike her, feel that she is a burden, or run away from her. His answer appears to reassure Eun Gi and she looks touched and comforted.
The doorbell rings and a group of Seoul Prosecutors descend with a search warrant related to an investigation launched by Tae Sang Group accusing Maru of unlawful competition and theft of corporate secrets. We see lawyer Ahn telling Jae Hee that prosecutors are headed to Kang Maru’s place right now and it’s going to be hard for him to get away this time.
Eun Gi anxiously watches as the men ransack the house, while Maru holds her hand tightly to keep her calm. The men find a flash drive and one of them ask Maru to head back to the office for an interview. Maru calmly asks for time to finish his breakfast. Eun Gi woke up early to cook for him for the first time and he wants to finish it before he leaves. He smiles at Eun Gi as she stares at him in shock.
During breakfast, Eun Gi keeps asking what is going on? Maru casually says Tae San is likely trying to set him up. Maru drinks the soup and tells Eun Gi to put more salt in it next time. She wonders why he’s so relaxed and he says all he needs to do is clear his name. He finishes and gets up to leave, with Eun Gi pestering him on how he’s going to deal with this. Maru picks up his phone and says he’ll deal with it this way, and then calls Jae Hee.
Maru walks outside and asks if the prosecutors have an arrest warrant? They don’t, so he drives off and tells them to come arrest him when they have one.
Maru walks into Jae Hee’s house and sees her eating alone. She invites him to join her since its lonely eating alone. He asks why she’s doing this pointless maneuver? She asks why the great Kang Maru looks so pissed this morning? She answers a call and tells the person on the other end that Kang Maru is here with her and talks about the complaint file. She tells the person not to let this news spread in the office.
Jae Hee hangs up and asks Maru whether he leaked Tae San operation secrets to another company? Maru says the USB containing that type of information is kept by Jae Hee. Furthermore his IQ is at least 30 points higher than hers and he would never do anything so stupid. Jae Hee reveals that she investigated Maru and knows that he spent last year as a corporate middle man peddling secrets. She’s found those people to be witnesses against Maru now.
Jae Hee says there is enough evidence of his past misdeeds, whereas no evidence that he didn’t do it this time. She warns Maru to end it now and leave, this is not where he’s supposed to be. If he leaves now, she’ll ask lawyer Ahn to withdraw the complaint. Jae Hee asks what Maru will do if he goes to jail, leaving Eun Gi and Choco all alone. Jae Hee goes toe-to-toe with Maru, claiming that she feels honored he tried to take her down, and too bad its going to end so easily like this. She tells him to take his brains somewhere else. Maru swallows hard and glares at her.
Eun Gi stands in her room and stares at the wall of pictures of Tae San people. She looks at Jae Hee’s picture and says her name.
Joon Ha barges into see lawyer Ahn and demands to know why he’s stooping so low to get rid of Maru using shady means? Lawyer Ahn is pleased that Maru is leaving Tae San and planning to move so the game is over. Lawyer Ahn tells Joon Ha that he’s no better, letting Maru and Eun Gi be together, when really he shouldn’t be helping Maru and should treat him as an opponent. Joon Ha asks why love equals possession? He doesn’t believe in that. Lawyer Ahn calls him a moron, or is Joon Ha a faker?
Joon Ha doesn’t think they are different, only that lawyer Ahn met Jae Hee and Joon Ha met Eun Gi and thus they walked down different paths. Joon Ha wonders if, when this is all over, the two of them will be walking the same path again?
Jae Hee calls the prosecutor’s office saying that Tae San Group has withdrawn its complaint against Maru, except Maru showed up at the prosecutors office asking to be investigated for this alleged offense. Jae Hee is stunned, and so am I. Maru sits before the prosecutor and admits that he’s swindled, lied, and cheated in the past, but he wants the prosecutor to help clear his name this time.
Before he lived just for his sister and hoped for a quick end to his dark life. Now he wants to be cleared of this allegation lodged by Tae San because he wants to live. Because he has found a reason to life, and the camera pans to Eun Gi in her room.
Eun Gi gets dressed and leaves the house, going back to her old house and walking around outside. She runs into Eun Seok coming home with the housekeeper and her brother happily greets his Eun Gi noona and says he missed her so much.
Once inside, Eun Gi walks around looking at everything and Eun Seok follows her, mimicking her every move. In the end, Eun Seok calls her a numbskull and reveals that Eun Gi used to call him that. They laugh with each other.
Maru finds out from Choco that Eun Gi is not at home. Together with Choco, Maru goes out looking for Eun Gi in the neighborhood. Maru is frantic with worry.
Jae Hee comes home and stares in shock at Eun Gi and Eun Seok playing a video game on the sofa.
Jae Gil comes home and finds Maru slumped on the sofa still worrying about Eun Gi. When Jae Gil comes home and finds out Eun Gi is missing, he reveals that the doctor told Eun Gi to visit old places to jog her memory and that is where she went. Maru is furious Jae Gil didn’t tell him this and rushes out to find Eun Gi again.
Eun Gi has dinner with Jae Hee and Eun Seok and Jae Hee asks for more bean sprouts seeing as Eun Gi and Eun Seok ate it all. Jae Hee notes that Eun Gi didn’t like eating bean sprouts before. The housekeeper is surprised she’s eating bean sprouts now and reveals to both Jae Hee and Eun Gi that Eun Gi was allergic to clams, which Eun Gi just took a bite of. She goes to the bathroom and Jae Hee has the housekeeper bring medicine. Eun Seok continues to mimic everything Eun Gi does and says he has to go to the bathroom as well. They discuss how Eun Gi seems like a different person.
Eun Gi is cleaning up in the bathroom when Maru arrives at the house. He rushes inside and has to calm down first before asking politely where Eun Gi is? He is led over to the dining table and Jae Hee informs him that Eun Gi is in the rest room and invites him to eat with them. Maru declines since he’s here only to pick up Eun Gi. She asks him to stay and let Eun Gi finish her meal.
Jae Hee asks why he went to the prosecutor’s office and Maru says it is to regain his integrity. She asks why since the complaint was withdrawn. He didn’t do this so he wants suspicion on him cleared by coming clean first, and letting the real culprit be found. Jae Hee asks if that is possible? Maru says its not hard as long as the real culprit emerges. Eun Gi returns and sits down to take a medicine tablet, which worries Maru and she quickly explains that she accidentally ate bean sprouts.
Jae Hee has the housekeeper bring out a dish that supposedly Eun Gi used to hate and can’t stand the smell of. She smiles and asks Eun Gi to try it. Before Eun Gi can eat, Jae Hee is called away to tend to Eun Seok who is throwing up. Eun Gi tells Maru that she had an allergic reaction because she didn’t even remember she was allergic to clams. He turns her wrist over to see it all red and looks very concerned.
Maru asks if Eun Gi ate everything Jae Hee placed on the table. She apologizes but all she wanted was to do something proactively and regain her memory. She doesn’t want to keep relying on Maru all the time anymore. Maru asks her to stop, he doesn’t want her so tired all alone. Eun Gi apologizes for being so shortsighted.
The housekeeper comes out and says how wonderful it is to see Eun Gi doing so well. She’s like a different person, playing with Eun Seok happily and not disliking the smelly fish dish. Jae Hee puts Eun Seok to bed and he asks her to have Eun Gi noona move back in with them. After Jae Hee returns to dinner, she’s upset to find that Eun Gi and Maru have left already without saying goodbye. She calls them rude and finds a note on the table from Eun Gi. In it, she wrote that she played happily with Eun Seok and wonders why Jae Hee brought out a dish she hated to test her, which isn’t right.
During the drive home and Maru requests that Eun Gi always stay by his side. Eun Gi is worried about regaining her memory after hearing that she used to throw a fit when a dish she didn’t like was brought on the table.
Eun Gi admits she’s frightened of regaining her memories, worried that she won’t like who the real Seo Eun Gi is. Maru tells her to just remain this way then, never regain her memories. Eun Gi asks if he’s sincere and he says yes. Eun Gi smiles and confesses that she doesn’t care about any other memories, what she really wants to regain her memories of Maru.
Maru turns to stare at her in shock and worry. Eun Gi continues, wistfully hoping that she will regain the memories of them falling in love, where they visited together, what they did, what they said to each other, the dreams they had of each other. She wants to remember all of that. She turns on the radio and its “San Francisco” again. She remembers the song and asks Maru if he remembers they listened to this song together before. Maru doesn’t answer her question and his eye twitches in a bit of tempered anxiety.
Maru walks into Tae San and runs into Joon Ha in the elevator. He asks what Maru is doing right now? Why is Maru confessing to past misdeeds and pushing himself to the edge of the cliff. Maru blithely says he’s giving it his all since he was promised half of Tae San Group to return Eun Gi to her rightful place.
Maru and Joon Ha see Jae Hee and lawyer Ahn in the hallway and greet each other. Jae Hee snarks that she didn’t except to see him here but she’s happy he’s back. Maru tells her to stop bullshitting and keep on investigating, pointing out that she ought to check the CCTV footage carefully.
Eun Gi meets with her doctor and reveals that she remembers herself driving in a tunnel with an angry and despairing expression. She appeared to be driving toward someone, but she can’t see who he is, though she changed lanes. The doctor asks why but she doesn’t know why either. He tells her that this is enough for today and asks her to think about where she was going and who she wanted to see.
Lawyer Ahn asks his lackey to go find Eun Gi’s medical report and CT scans from her accident. He suspects her medical reports were doctored to show less injury than she is really suffering from.
Eun Gi sits in her room and tries to think about the tunnel scene memory. Jae Hee arrives to see her which is when Maru calls asking her out on a date since he finished work early. Eun GI reveals Jae Hee is there and Maru tells her not to open the door until he gets home. Jae Hee keeps ringing the doorbell so Eun Gi opens the door.
Jae Hee arrives with a package of food and says Eun Gi left so suddenly that day, is it because Eun Gi has some sort of misunderstanding towards Jae Hee about causing the allergic reaction? Jae Hee apologizes and tells Eun Gi she brought her favorite dishes. Jae Hee walks around the room and asks where Choco and Jae Gil went? Eun Gi is shocked that Jae Hee knows them, and she admits she knows them because one is Maru’s sister and the other is Maru’s best friend.
Eun Gi asks what Jae Hee means and Jae Hee is surprised Eun Gi is acting like she doesn’t know. She looks at an old picture of young Maru and Choco and says it feels like another lifetime ago. Jae Hee suggests Eun Gi move back into the house with her, especially since she and Maru aren’t married yet and people will talk. Eun Gi declines, saying she is very comfortable here.
Jae Hee asks her why Maru? Why Maru when there are other men out there? Is it revenge against Jae Hee? If so, Eun Gi shouldn’t destroy her own life just because she hates Jae Hee. Eun Gi has a flashback to Jae Hee demanding that she end things with Maru, and another flashback with Jae Hee warning Eun Gi that Maru is up to no good and she’ll get hurt.
Back to the present, Jae Hee tells Eun Gi that while she doesn’t like Eun Gi, she also doesn’t hate Eun Gi. If Eun Gi treated Jae Hee like a human being, and was decent and kind to Eun Seok like she is now, then Jae Hee would have never taken things this far. Jae Hee says she doesn’t want to see Eun Gi hurt. Jae Hee tells Eun Gi to come with her, Eun Seok is at home waiting for her. We see Maru rushing through traffic to get home and looking very upset.
Eun Gi asks why Jae Hee is opposing Maru? Jae Hee touches Eun Gi’s head asking if she’s alright. Eun Gi loves Maru so much, she can’t live without him, so why does Jae Hee oppose him? Jae Hee asks if she really doesn’t know? Jae Hee yells at Eun Gi to remember what intentions Maru had when he first approached Eun Gi, and Eun Gi should know all of this! Eun Gi grabs her head and says she doesn’t know what intentions Maru had initially, she wants Jae Hee to tell her.
Jae Hee can tells something is wrong with Eun Gi and asks to take her to the hospital. Eun Gi keeps saying she doesn’t know and asks Jae Hee to tell her. Eun Gi flashes back to her coffee meeting with Joon Ha where he laid out everything about Maru for her. Eun Gi clutches her head and collapses on the foor. Jae Hee is in shock and rushes forward to tend to her.
Maru runs into the house and sees Jae Hee hovering over Eun Gi and asking if she’s alright. He rushes forward and pushes Jae Hee off Eun Gi. Jae Hee calls out to Maru and he rages at her to get the hell out of here. He picks Eun Gi up in his arms and walks out with her, leaving Jae Hee sitting on the floor in a daze.
Maru takes an unconscious Eun Gi to the hospital and during the drive he grabs her hand and grips it tightly even though she is passed out in the passenger seat. After she is admitted, he sits beside her hospital bed and watches her as she remains unconscious.
Secretary Hyun is at the house and chewing out Jae Gil and Choco for allowing the incident to happen. Choco remarks that unni turns into a different person when she is angry.
Maru continues to sit beside Eun Gi’s bedside and holding her hand. Sleeping Eun Gi has flashes of the tunnel memory and she stirs awake momentarily, seeing Maru beside her, before falling back into slumber.
Joon Ha rushes to the hospital and arrives to see Maru beside Eun Gi and stroking her head. He stops and turns to leave. As he walks out, he looks very sad. Maru stares at a sleeping Eun Gi and holds her hand up to his cheek and staring at her worriedly.
Jae Hee is brooding in her office and invites lawyer Ahn to join her for a drink. He chides her for drinking at work and looking quite vulnerable right now. He hands her the actual report on Eun Gi’s accident and medical records, indicating that she suffered severe brain trauma and lost her memory. Right now Eun Gi is just acting and that is why she brought Maru with her.
Jae Hee flashes back to Eun Gi not knowing where her father’s study was and Maru quickly stepping in and smoothing over her gaffe. She also thinks back to Eun Gi happily playing with Eun Seok, and the housekeeper pointing out that Eun Gi ate bean sprouts she was allergic to.
Lawyer Ahn says that if she is really that injured, then she will not be able to inherit Tae San Group because she is incapable of running the company.
Eun Gi wakes up in the hospital and looks over to see Maru sleeping next to her. When Maru wakes up, he’s shocked to find the bed empty. He runs around the hospital inside and out looking for Eun Gi.
Maru finds Eun Gi curled up on a bench outside the hospital. He covers her with his jacket and she wakes up. He chides her for running out without a word, leaving him so worried about her. She doesn’t answer and he asks if she didn’t hear what he said. He apologizes knowing that he’s been too angry with a patient, which is when Eun Gi pushes him and his jacket off her.
Maru ask Eun Gi what is wrong and she asks him “Who are you?” Maru thinks she’s joking but she just coldly asks again “Who the heck are you?” Maru stares at her in wide-eyed shock.
Thoughts of Mine:
Eun Gi has got amnesia on top of amnesia? Because if she regained her memories she would definitely still know who Maru is, right? Or is she faking it? Ahhhh, my head is spinning. Does she have anterograde amnesia now on top of having retrograde amnesia? Lee Kyung Hee, I hope you know what you are doing, because tossing the kitchen sink of memory loss afflictions at Eun Gi isn’t going to add more angst to your story. Aside from the baffling ending to episode 13, this was actually a very slow hour mostly filled with Eun Gi trying to regain her memories coupled with Maru stepping up his battle with Jae Hee both on a corporate and personal front. I worried a teensy bit that Maru may still have residual feelings for Jae Hee that might crop up when he’s back in close proximity with her, so it was such a relief to see how thorough and completely he’s over her. He used to be angry at her for what she had become (a manipulative golddigger), but now he’s angry at her because of what she does to Eun Gi. Without Eun Gi, Maru wouldn’t care one whit whether Jae Hee became Mother Teresa incarnate tomorrow or decided she wanted to become a serial killer. She no longer matters to him but for what danger she represents to Eun Gi, the love and light of his life.
I enjoyed the fan service shower in the beginning of the episode, because it allowed us another glimpse at Maru in his downtime and when he’s being candid. He wrote “happiness” on the steamed up mirror because that is what he dares to hope for, what he’s finally experiencing right now after so long without it. I know Maru remains a flawed character, one who doesn’t seem to have a personal mission in life outside of caring for others. It was baby Choco when they were kids, Jae Hee growing up, and now Eun Gi when he’s an adult. I wish Maru could find his own purpose in life again, even without being a doctor he could achieve success elsewhere. I understand that the hematoma death sentence hanging over his head is stifling his desire to live, coupled with all the emotional trauma he went through with both Jae Hee and Eun Gi, but ultimately I want Maru to be more than just Eun Gi’s lover and protector. Similarly I want Eun Gi to regain all her memories and go forward in her life armed with both a career and a relationship.
Jae Hee rather undermined my expectation of her in this episode, showing us once again that she is not entirely a Cruella De Vil waiting to skin Eun Gi alive and make a step daughter pelt for her to wrap around herself. Yes, she is selfish, and manipulative, but she still has a human core capable of emotions. While she was trying to test Eun Gi, she was also noticing how new Eun Gi is so much nicer in general and definitely much nicer to Eun Seok. Jae Hee is practical enough to want to co-exist with Eun Gi as long as Eun Gi accepts Eun Seok and gives him half the inheritance, but that remains rooted in her belief that she and Eun Seok are somehow entitled to something from the dead Chairman. Sorry lady, doesn’t work that way. Maru telling her to the scram (more like “get the fuck away”) was awesome but sadly the damage has been done with Jae Hee triggering Eun Gi’s most painful memories. Now we have to wait to see what even more memory-less Eun Gi reacts to her situation and to the Maru who now openly loves her.