After today’s episode 15 of Prime Minister and I there are only two more episodes left to wrap up the story. Will it end in a moralistic tale of family obligation over personal emotional stakes? Or will the romance that defies conventions in more ways than one be allowed to reach a happy ending? I have full confidence in the thought process of Yul and Da Jung that I’m certain they will make it work. They will go through doubt and worries and ponder through all the considerations, but in the end I believe they will decide to fight for happiness that isn’t swayed by people around them. I don’t hate Na Young because she’s weak and made choices that have hurt people. People are allowed to make mistakes, the onus is on her to accept the consequences for her actions so its her avoidance tactic afterwards that seals the deal for me. Her cowardice is a stark contrast to exactly what I love about Yul and Da Jung’s characters and the way they are brave and unflinching towards their own decisions in life. When Da Jung pulls a noble idiot card it’s because she doesn’t want to hurt others rather than being afraid of her own pain.
I actually don’t think it’s right to say someone “deserves” another person’s love more and in this case I don’t think Yul should pick Da Jung because she’s somehow a better person than Na Young. It doesn’t work like that and the reason why Da Jung and Yul are the end game here is because we have watched them fall in love through the most thoughtful and considerate of processes. They took their time, they mulled over the consequences, they asked themselves tough questions, and then they discussed it with each other. At the end of episode 15, I was screaming at the screen because we finally see Yul act on impulse and it was the actions of a man who knew what he wanted. He wants to be with Da Jung and I trust he’ll make it happen despite the awkwardness and fall out of picking a younger girl over the returning supposedly dead wife and mother of his kids. I’m happy to see the second leads working so hard to do the right thing, struggling with the crazy situation happening around them but ultimately putting what Yul and Da Jung want before their own unrequited feelings. Joon Ki definitely got taken for a ride today but it was very touching when he reunited with the sister he’s been mourning for so long, a reminder that he really did have a grudge against Yul because he cared too much about Na Young’s cut short life. I don’t want Na Young to leave or die or some ridiculously clean ending like that. I want her to stay and reclaim her life as Park Na Young but not as Mrs. Kwon Yul. Those are two separate identities and she’s got some seriously mothering to catch up on.
Episode 15 recap:
Da Jung arrives at the church where a happy Yul is waiting for her. She walks down the aisle with a face full of woe that Yul immediately registers. She falls into his arms for an embrace and Yul drops the ring he was holding in order to hug her.
Yul sits down with Da Jung in a pew and she hands him back a handkerchief apologizing for worrying him back there. He apologizes for moving too fast and thinks she’s worried about making their marriage a reality because of what it entails – his political career and being the mother to his kids. He can push back the wedding ceremony but asks her not to cry when the day comes. He laughs that she keeps crying when she’s getting married.
In Ho tries to stop Hye Joo from revealing Na Young is alive to Yul. She insists until In Ho shares the truth that Na Young doesn’t want anyone to know. If she did then then she would have come back on her own all these years. If the public found out Na Young is alive the impact on Yul’s political career would be devastating. Hye Joo insists on telling Da Jung then because she doesn’t trust In Ho and believes his decision is all based on whatever is best for Da Jung. In Ho tells her to talk to Da Jung but also believe that he wants to save Yul’s political career as well.
Da Jung and Yul are crawling on hands and knees in the church looking for the dropped ring. Yul tells Da Jung to have a seat and he’ll look by himself. She finds it under a pew but then lies to Yul that she didn’t find it. She picks up the ring and pockets it quietly.
Hye Joo is at the Prime Minister’s mansion ready to tell Yul. Woo Ri explains his dad is out and she heads out to find Yul. Hye Joo notices how tall Woo Ri has gotten lately and is about to start his Freshman year in high school. She remembers when he was a kid still crying about losing his mom. She asks if he misses his mom and he does but he can’t spend his life crying over her, right?
Da Jung and Yul come home with Yul upset he can’t find the ring and wants to go back tomorrow. Hye Joo walks up and apologizes for coming unannounced. Da Jung excuses herself so they can talk.
Da Jung sits in Man Se’s room as he’s sleeping. She looks at the ring and wonders why she didn’t tell Yul that she found it. She writes in her journal that today she saw Yul’s first wife who everyone believed was dead. She closes the journal and puts is on the desk before looking at the sleeping Man Se.
Yul meets with the President and intends to continue to investigate Yong Shim Group. The President worries that the other chaebol groups will rebel but Yul insists it’s the right thing to do. The President forcefully puts his foot down and tells him to end it here. He warns Yul that he can’t work with him going forward if Yul doesn’t have loyalty to him. Joon Ki arrives and the two men exchange a glance before Yul leaves.
In Ho finds out from Hye Joo that she went to see Yul but in the end couldn’t bring herself to tell him about Na Young. She also thinks knowing about it would end his Prime Minister career but she intends to tell him the truth after he leaves his office. Yul sees Hye Joo walking away as he walks out and asks if In Ho was just talking to her? He wonders is something bad happened? In Ho smiles and says it was nothing.
The President discusses the pressure he is under from the chaebol groups with this investigation. Joon Ki says he can change Prime Ministers and even if there isn’t a good reason they can find one as long as the President agrees to do it.
Na Ra is on the computer talking to her teacher about math but she’s still heartbroken over her cute oppa becoming a priest. She ends the study session early. Da Jung comes in to find Na Ra sobbing her guts out. Da Jung comforts Na Ra that she needs to grow up to become a beautiful educated girl and maybe that oppa will finish seminary school but decide not to become a priest so she still has a chance.
Da Jung makes ramyun for the kids to cheer them up and Na Ra wolfs down two bowls but complains that it’s too lightly flavored. The little ones run off and Woo Ri tells Da Jung that Na Ra really likes her and refers to her as a mom. Woo Ri also really likes Da Jung as his mother figure.
Da Jung asks if Woo Ri misses his mom and he wonders why lately people have been bringing up his mom? Of course he misses his mom and still remembers what she looks like. But he’s so sad that Na Ra and Man Se don’t even remember what she looks like, so if his mom can come back to life he would give anything for that. But that’s impossible.
Da Jung sits in a cafe waiting for In Ho and asks him directly if the person he mentioned was alive was Park Na Young? She was also his hyung’s lover, right? And In Ho wanted revenge on Yul because of that, right? In Ho fesses up to everything but it turned out to be a misunderstanding on his part just like Da Jung suggested it could be. Da Jung wants to meet Na Young in person and asks In Ho to make it happen. He wants to know why and she just has something to talk to her about. In Ho wonders what Da Jung has to say to her? About Yul and the kids? None of that is necessary and she needs to promise In Ho that she won’t meet her. If Da Jung meets her then Da Jung will waver and want to give her place to that person. In Ho says that cannot happen.
Da Jung knows he’s worried about her but that person is a mother. She is not just a person but also a mother. Da Jung lost her mother when she was young and the desire for a mother is a feeling she knows well. The pain and longing is something she experienced and she cannot watch the kids missing their mother after knowing she is still alive. In Ho asks what will happen to Da Jung then? Doesn’t she want to live a happy life with Yul? Da Jung says nothing and just blinks back her tears. As Da Jung walks down the street she thinks back to Woo Ri wanting to give anything for his mother to come back. Da Jung remembers all the happy times she spent with the three kids and then In Ho’s questions whether she wants happiness with Yul?
Joon Ki has his secretary secretly preparing the paperwork for the proposal to remove the Prime Minister. His secretary has been keeping tabs on Hye Joo and knows that she met with In Ho last night and also visited the Prime Minister’s mansion. Can she really be trusted? Hye Joo comes in to deliver Joon Ki’s schedule and after she leaves Joon Ki says he will handle Hye Joo. He asks his secretary to do more investigation into his sister’s accident and whether the case can be reopened.
In the car later that night, Joon Ki asks Hye Joo why she left work early and she lies that she didn’t feel well so got some rest. Joon Ki knows she’s lying but says he’s happy she’s feeling better.
Yul is leaving work and his bodyguards ask him to wait a bit for the car to be pulled up. Da Jung walks by and turns around so he doesn’t see her. Yul still calls her and asks if she’s out right now? She lies that she went to see a friend. He tells her to stay out and have some fun and she can even drink a bit like she wants. Da Jung laughs that she will do that and he shouldn’t worry about her. After she hangs up is when Yul walks towards her because he totally saw her already.
They sit down at a street stall for dinner and he asks why she lied? Da Jung didn’t want to bother him is all. He wonders why she picked this place for dinner since they rarely go out. Da Jung wants to do things with Yul that they haven’t done before such as eating at a street stall. They got married before she got flowers, got to hold hands on a date with him, got to see him looking sad when sending her off.
Yul looks sad about this and wants to do all of that in the future. Slowly he will do each and every thing she wants with her since they have a lot of time ahead of them. Da Jung asks what he’ll do if they don’t have a lot of time? What if they are to be separated?
Na Young sits in her room and thinks about In Ho’s request to go see Da Jung.
Yul and Da Jung walk home and she asks him the hypothetical about what he will do if they are to be parted tomorrow? Yul will stop time so that day won’t come. Will he need to break all the clocks in the world to make it happen then? Da Jung doesn’t want Yul to joke around but he reminds her that her question is a joke to begin with. They will never be parted so she doesn’t need to worry. Oh my heart hurts.
Yul walks off and Da Jung stands in place brooding so he turns back and calls her name. Da Jung asks if they can run away again and Yul laughs that they can’t run far with the bodyguards chasing them. Plus they have to return in the end anyways, right? Da Jung admits he’s right and forces a smile. Yul tells her to stay put and this time he will walk towards her, one step at a time. Yul walks towards her until he is standing right before her. He holds out his hand to her and Da Jung puts her hand in his. Yul closes his hand over hers and strokes her hand with his thumb tenderly.
Hye Joo asks if Joon Ki heard the rumor that there is a proposal circulating to remove the Prime Minister? Joon Ki lies that he’s not heard such a rumor. The secretary comes in and hands Joon Ki a file which he puts in his desk and Hye Joo notices. He asks if she needs anything else but Hye Joo says she’s leaving work now.
In Ho calls Hye Joo out to drink and she knows he’s worried about Da Jung and is willing to listen to his woes and offer advice. In Ho says it’s not that but he’s worried because Da Jung wants to meet Na Young. Hye Joo yells at him for not keeping Na Young being alive just between the two of them. She accuses In Ho of letting Da Jung know because if she left Yul then she could pick In Ho. Hye Joo quickly apologizes to In Ho for that accusation but she’s just really stressed. Hye Joo misses Na Young unni as well but can’t see her otherwise she’ll waver. In Ho reveals that Da Jung wants to return her position to Na Young and there is also even worse news which is the police called him to say they are re-investigating the car accident at the request of Park Joon Ki. Hye Joo says she’ll look into it.
Hye Joo sneaks into Joon Ki’s office that night and rifles through his desk. The lights turns on as Joon Ki walks in holding the file from earlier. He knew Hye Joo came to work for him for a reason but he’s still shocked that she would betray him like this. He hands her the file and tells her to read it. Hye Joo tries to explain herself but then reads the file which is the proposal to remove the Prime Minister. He plans to also reveal the truth about Na Young’s accident on the same day Yul’s removed from office.
Joon Ki storms out and Hye Joo chases after him to tell him that he can’t do this. Joon Ki says Yul hurt his sister so much that he can’t let him get away with this. He doesn’t care if Hye Joo tells Yul what he’s planning to do. Hye Joo finally blurts out that Na Young is alive. Joon Ki is dumbstruck by the shocking reveal.
Da Jung goes to visit her dad and he’s coughing and not looking so well. Da Jung brings out his favorite dishes but he doesn’t eat much. He claims he ate a lot during lunch but Da Jung thinks this is out of character so asks if he’s feeling ill? Dad makes the excuse that he’s just in a bad mood from losing money at hwatu and goes to lay down to rest.
Dad asks how Woo Ri, Na Ra, and Man Se are doing? The kids are fine and asking when haraboji will visit again. Dad only saw them a few times but misses them a lot and they remind dad of when Da Jung was a child. They are just like Da Jung when she was small, without a mother but still trying hard to be happy. Dad tells Da Jung to treat the kids well and she promises to do that. She plans to give them a really great present soon.
Yul is working in his study and thinking back to the President ordering him to stop the investigating now otherwise they can’t work together anymore. Na Ra asks her dad to go out to eat since Da Jung isn’t around and she’s bored. Yul agrees to take her out and goes to get Man Se. He’s not in his room and Yul walks in to tidy up a bit. He finds Da Jung’s journal and picks it up. He doesn’t have a chance to read it before Man Se pops in and he takes the kids out to eat.
In Ho accompanies Da Jung to meet with Na Young. He asks her a final time if she must do this? Da Jung says yes, she has to see Na Young.
Da Jung walks into the park and finds Na Young waiting for her. They two Mrs. Kwon Yul sit down to have a heart-to-heart. Na Young thought about why Da Jung wanted to meet her – if she’s worried about her returning then she needn’t worry because Na Young has no intention of going back. Da Jung wants to see her for the exact opposite reason. When she saw Na Young there was a time she wanted to pretend she was mistaken because she doesn’t want to leave Yul. But she knows that is wrong because if Na Young is alive then Da Jung cannot stay.
Na Young is the kids mother and needs to return to her place in that family. Na Young thanks Da Jung for saying this but she isn’t going back. Da Jung tells Na Young that the kids really miss their mother. Woo Ri, Na Ra, and Man Se all miss their mother. For this reason alone Na Young needs to return to her place. Da Jung leaves Na Young there to think over what she said.
In Ho waits for Da Jung to come back and confirms that the talk went well. Da Jung smiles and says of course and she feels much better. Da Jung then starts to cry and asks In Ho to pretend he doesn’t see her crying. Na Young sits alone on the park bench and cries as well as she thinks back to what Da Jung asked of her. In Ho asks Da Jung what she plans to do next? Da Jung doesn’t know and has no plans. Da Jung asks how long In Ho is going to keep Na Young being alive from Yul? In Ho knows that this situation is something that Yul and the kids need to deal with. Logically he should have told Yul first but as Yul’s personal aide he wants to see him finish his term so he doesn’t want him to know. In Ho offers to drive Da Jung home but she declines and walks off.
Na Young goes back to the church shelter she is living and Joon Ki pulls up outside with Hye Joo in tow. He gets out of the car and goes to tearfully confirm that Na Young is still alive. He asks how she could be alive and not tell him. She keeps apologizing to her oppa and admitting that she was wrong. The siblings hug.
Yul heads to a flower shop to buy flowers for Da Jung and the florist asks what kind of flowers he’s looking for. She explains that roses are passionate love, lilies are pure love, tulips are love’s confession, all flowers have a language about love. Da Jung is buying a watch at a store for Yul and thinks back to him wishing he could stop time.
Da Jung comes home to a bouquet of baby’s breath from Yul. She loves it and thanks him while he explains the baby’s breath is supposed to represent a joyful smile and when he heard that he thought of Da Jung. Yul reminds her that all those things she wanted to do with him, he’s starting today with the flowers. Going forward he’ll do everything else one by one. Yul wonders if he’s being too sweet and turns to run off. Da Jung stops him and hands him the present of the watch she bought for him. Despite him saying he wants to stop time if they are to be parted, she wants his time to never stop and always continue forward. Yul wonders why she’s talking like they won’t see each other anymore. Da Jung says its a joke and then puts the watch on his wrist.
Da Jung puts the baby’s breath in two vases and thinks that these flowers also have another meaning which is eternal sadness but likely Yul doesn’t know it. She puts the flowers in Yul’s study and he’s working while she’s just staring at him. He asks why she keeps staring and it’ll make him embarrassed. Da Jung asks Yul if the truth is something that always need to be revealed? Yul believes so and asks why she’s asking? Da Jung thinks the truth is supposed to bring happiness but what if it brings pain? Yul would still choose to know the truth. He could live not knowing the truth if it would bring pain but in the end wouldn’t that be a form of lying to oneself and everyone else.
Da Jung asks if Yul knows what there is a legend surrounding the baby’s breath? He asks what it is and Da Jung narrates as we see the scene change to her walking to Yul’s alma mater university. Yul also pulls up outside and walks in. Da Jung story goes like this – there was a woman whose lover died in battle and after time passed the woman fell in love again with another man, but one day the man she thought was died came back. That is why the other meaning of baby’s breath is eternal sadness. Da Jung imagines Yul walking up to her but in truth she is walking alone through campus as does he. Yul walks into the music hall auditorium and wonders why Da Jung wants to meet him here?
Yul enters the darkened auditorium and sees a woman sitting there. He smiles thinking it’s Da Jung and walks down to join her when Na Young turns around and they lock eyes. Both are shocked to see the other person there. Tell me about it.
Da Jung walks away and tells herself that she did well.
Na Young speaks first and reveals she is here not to see Yul but because Da Jung wanted to see her again. She quickly runs out of the auditorium past a dazed Yul who says nothing. Na Young runs off and then Yul runs out of the auditorium looking everywhere for her but she’s already gone.
Joon Ki sits in his office brooding as his entire axis has just been rearranged with Na Young being alive. His secretary informs him that the Prime Minister’s removal proposal is about to be discussed in the legislature. Joon Ki says it must be halted for now and runs out to stop it.
Da Jung goes to Yul’s office and leaves the ring she retrieved from the church on his desk. She says goodbye to Yul and picks up the ring again.
Da Jung says goodbye to the kids by claiming she’s heading to take care of her dad. The kids ask her not to stay for too long like last time. Da Jung tells the kids to be well while she is away. She asks Woo Ri to take care of his siblings and he asks her to come back soon. Da Jung leaves and the kids can sense something is off about her. Da Jung walks out of the mansion and tries not to cry.
Yul sits alone in the dark auditorium trying to process the shock of Na Young being alive. He gets a call from Woo Ri who felt like Da Jung was really weird when she left to go see her dad. He asks if Yul knew Da Jung was going to see her dad? Yul hangs up the call and runs out like a man possessed.
Yul runs to the cars parked outside and jumps into the driver’s seat of a car and peels off without taking any bodyguards with him. He drives like a madman and thinks back to all of Da Jung’s recent sadness and hints about them not having a lot of time left and may be separated soon. He looks so devastated.
Da Jung arrives at her dad’s hospital but decides not to go in since she doesn’t want her dad to worry about her either. As she is walking away suddenly Yul’s car drives past. It appears he doesn’t see her but then his car turns around and blocks her path. Yul gets out and tells Da Jung to go home with him.
Da Jung won’t go back to the Prime Minister’s mansion anymore so Yul just grabs her hand to deposit her in the car. Good job, Yul!
Thoughts of Mine:
I love that Yul’s is able to do what his heart wants even under such shocking duress. He hears Da Jung left the house and BAM it’s fire blazing car gunning to go bring his wife back. The moment he sees her there isn’t even a hesitation or asking her pointless questions about why she set up his meeting with his Not Dead First Wife. Clearly she was being a noble idiot, and it takes one to know one what with Yul’s earlier attempts to keep Da Jung at arms length so she doesn’t waste her life being married forever to an older man with three kids when she can do much better. It’s obvious Yul has no romantic feelings left for Na Young and didn’t even before knowing she was alive. He’s guilty towards her and angry but the love is gone. He’s as soon get a venereal disease than get back to being married to Na Young. But that doesn’t mean he’s not going to want to give her back her identity in life and a chance to be the mother to his kids. I don’t fault Da Jung at all for what she did. She grew up without a mom and to hear Woo Ri wistfully hoping for his mom back was clearly something she cannot ignore. It’s moving that Woo Ri wasn’t decreeing Da Jung couldn’t be his mom as well, just that he also wanted his real mom. Kids are allowed to have more love from parental figures and having a real mom and a step-mom is not mutually exclusive. Da Jung did right in telling Na Young to return to her kids, but she was mistaken in thinking that meant Na Young resume her role as Yul’s wife. That needn’t happen and I’m certain Yul can use his smarty pants brain to make it happen so that he can untie this unholy messy knot. My hope is that Joon Ki won’t go from “I want to destroy you” towards Yul to “Please resume being my brother-in-law” all of a sudden now that Na Young is alive. I can’t handle him constantly pressuring Yul to do what he wants. He needs to accept his own mistaken anger towards Yul and begin atoning by stopping his quest to destroy Yul’s political career and then follow that up by helping Yul create a solution where Na Young can be a mother to her kids while Yul gets to stay married to Da Jung.
This episode was actually way more moving than I expected and it was done in a way to build naturally on all the great character development laid out from the very beginning. Da Jung being motherless turned out not to be just a character description but a vital part of why she could mother Yul’s kids and also why she would give up her own happiness for the sake of theirs. She’s wrong only in not discussing it beforehand with Yul and springing Na Young on him, but I think her sacrifice was very touching and different than giving up for flimsy reasons. I’m hanging all my hope on Yul to fight for his chance at happiness and not let worry for others influence his own actions. I love how much he was showering Da Jung with attention and affection in this episode but in typical Yul ways. The flowers were sweet but it was the reason behind them that was even sweeter. He’s not romancing Da Jung the way he thinks he should, he is romancing her the way she wants. For a man who was the one calling the shots in the beginning of the drama, it’s such a lovely reversal of roles to see him being the one walking towards her and doing what she wants. Their relationship remains one built on give and takes, on concern for each other built on the understanding of what love means. Da Jung thinks love means letting go when there doesn’t appear to be a solution in sight. I see Yul believing that love is making a solution even if one isn’t seemingly available. He never fought for Na Young when he learned of her infidelity and choosing another man. This time he’ll fight tooth and nail for Da Jung and it’s surely going to make their eventual happy ending all that more satisfying. Sadly Na Jung’s dad doesn’t appear to have any magic cure available for him and he seems to be getting worse fast. Let’s gear ourselves up for tears and smiles in the remaining two episodes to come as we prepare to head into the final leg of the journey for Yul and Da Jung.
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