Smile, Donghae Episode 8 Recap
Anna starts practicing the harmonica once more before the show starts while a nervous Bongi watches on and an upset Donghae runs in. When Bongi notices Donghae, she stands up and tries to stop him, but he brushes past her and goes to his surprised mother and pulls her off the stage. Saewa, Bongi, and the PD rush after them as they leave the room. Saewa begs Donghae to go back and the PD says that Anna can’t leave when the show is just about to start. Donghae yells that he did not give his permission and Anna has no right to be on television. He then continues on down the hall with Saewa running after him and Anna trying to stop him. The PD tells Saewa to immediately go back to her place to start the show while he and Bongi continue to chase after Donghae and Anna.
The PD catches up to them outside the station and tells Donghae that he can’t leave them high and dry when they are shooting a live show. If they leave, then the show will have to be canceled – never a good thing. Donghae then says that the station went behind his back and asked his mother, so they should have known something like that was going to happen when he found out. The PD says he doesn’t know what happened, but he’ll apologize once the show ends as they desperately need Anna to go on. Bongi finally arrives on scene and tells Donghae that if Anna doesn’t go back it will ruin Saewa’s show. Anna then tells her son that she has already promised Saewa and she needs to keep the promise. Donghae then says he will not allow his mother to become a laughing stock on national television. The PD then tells Donghae to do the show instead. This infuriates Donghae, but his mother urges him to do it as she has promised and you have to keep your promises. She is crying and holding his hand and he yells her name, but you know his mother wore him down.
Saewa is shocked when Donghae arrives and sits in Anna’s place. The PD tells her what happened and then says since she knows the story well, she needs to do her best to get his emotions to come across. Saewa nods and steals a glance at Donghae – he is obviously less than thrilled to be there and still very angry. Will anything but anger come out on the show?
At the Kim house, Jun calls Hye Sook and asks he to grab some files he left behind. She goes into his office and finds the papers on the desk. She asks for the fax number for the hotel and hangs up. She looks at the documents and then smiles. It’s pretty easy to tell that she will probably use them as an excuse to fly out to Jeju to be with her husband. Boy, he isn’t going to like that one bit.
Back at the studio, Saewa starts off the show by introducing Donghae. Sool Nyeo and her girls are all watching and cheering for Saewa. Sool Nyeo compliments her daughter’s looks and Sun Ok comments that Saewa only looks that good because she has her own makeup artist. Sun Ok believes her daughter would look just as good on TV with makeup and a nice dress. Sool Nyeo tells her to be quiet and turn up the volume – those two just can’t help bickering every chance they get. Sun Ok grudgingly turns up the volume.
We then cut back to the studio where a nervous Saewa introduces Donghae. She tells of his birth in America, his mother’s adoption, and his career as a speed skater. Donghae goes up to the front where the people clap. Anna keeps clapping and Bongi has to stop her as it gets awkward. Saewa asks him to introduce himself, but Donghae just stares at his mother who urges him to speak. Saewa tries once again, saying he must feel awkward to be on TV for the first time and finally Donghae starts speaking halting and introduces himself as Carl Laker. Saewa then brings up him coming to Korea to participate in the speed skating World Cup and then asks who he is looking for. Donghae says his father and Saewa asks what he remembers. Donghae says he remembers nothing as he only knows his father got his mother pregnant and then left. He never called and never tried to see them in the past 27 years. This brings tears to Anna’s eyes and makes the audience start buzzing.
Saewa then does the unthinkable (at least for Donghae) by asking him about his mother who is “different” from others. Sympathy ratings, but what a betrayal to her boyfriend! Donghae gives a startled look and Saewa mentions the accidents where she hit her head before she was adopted overseas. Donghae says nothing and Saewa apologizes saying that they need the information to help find his father. Donghae looks at his mother who is clutching James’s harmonica and he flashes back to when he was a child and sitting his mom at an airport. He was coughing and eating a hamburger while his mom rushed off with a sign and asking every Asian if they were from Korean and knew James. Donghae then passed out and his mom picked him up and rushed him out of the airport. He then recalls the same moment where she was picked up by a security guard for disturbing people and he was a teenager. He then recalls when he was an adult and she was sick waiting again at the airport with coffee and a sign looking for James. He came and piggybacked her out. Wow. She never did stop waiting even when everyone else would have.
Donghae comes back to the present and while looking at his mom, states that Korea has abandoned her twice. Once, when she was adopted overseas, and twice when James left her. We then see Bongi look at Anna who is crying over what he son said. Donghae, tearing up himself, then says he doesn’t want to talk about how they lived in the states. Instead, he has something he wishes to say to the man who abandoned his mother. Saewa, probably knowing what Donghae is about to do, asks if he means his father and then tells him that his dad may be watching, so speak a few words to him. Donghae then looks into the camera lens and tells his father not to watch even if he is watching, not to remember Anna and Donghae even if he does remember, and he then says not to look for them. Donghae warns him that if they do meet, he will be sure to tells his father what he has done to Donghae’s family. Poor Anna just shakes her head and cries as she wants James to find them. Bongi does her best to comfort Anna while the PD, not happy with how things are going, tells Saewa to cut to something else (as this is supposed to be a warm show about people looking for their lost loved ones with the hopes of being reunited – the exact opposite of what Donghae wants). Saewa then says the Donghae has become emotional and changes the subject to speed skating and then asks him to return to his seat.
Donghae stalks off set, grabs his protesting mother and leaves. Bongi quickly follows after while the still flustered Saewa tries to salvage the show. Saewa apologizes for being flustered, since this is her first show. She then drops her cue cards. As she picks them up, she apologizes again and tries to regain her composure. In all honesty, it is kind of just desserts for going behind Donghae’s back and then exposing the past he would rather forget live on television. I don’t know why, I just can’t bring myself to like our overly ambitious Saewa.
A furious Sool Nyeo turns off the TV and the girls head out back into the salon while Sool Nyeo complains about how Donghae ruined her daughter’s first show. Sun Ok says that she saw how upset he was and could not blame him for his actions – too true, though I suppose Donghae could have been more diplomatic. Then again, given the situation, he had already refused the show and Saewa and Anna did go behind his back to do it, which wasn’t good either. Sun Ok then says that Donghae is a great son who cares deeply for his mother. Sooly Nyeo asks what she means and Sun Ok replies that Sool Nyeo won’t know about the caring of a son since she only has daughters. Omo, gotta love the whole “son” trump card. Sool Nyeo asks if Sun Ok is going to start bragging about Tae Hoon again. Sool Nyeo then says her Saewa is worth a dozen sons. Sun Ok protests and says daughters are nice and all, but sons provide shoulders to lean on – something Sool Nyeo wouldn’t know. Sun Ok then says that her son sometimes feels like a second husband. Okay – now that is slightly disturbing.
Sun Ok then rubs it in that Sool Nyeo has neither a husband nor a son. This makes Sool Nyeo snap and Sun Ok backs off and wonders if she should make Tae Hoon some eel extract and then wonders what her “sweet” Bongi is doing. These women can be so juvenile in their fights at times. Sun Ok then asks if she should get some extract for Saewa, too. Sool Nyeo then asks didn’t Sun Ok’s husband used to export kimchi to New York (oh she is so not going there is she?). Sun Ok asks why and Sool Nyeo (oh yes she did – eyeroll) then mentions that Sun Ok should look into the boy on TV. What if he turns out to be Kang Jae’s son. Oh geez. Sun Ok of course snaps and asks how Sool Nyeo could accuse Kang Jae like that.
Back at the studio, Anna tells at her son to stop and he tells her to stop crying while pulling her along with Bongi running behind them. Bongi catches up and grabs Donghae’s arm telling him not to leave like that. Donghae then turns on her and yells that he thought he told her to let him know if anything happened to his mother. How could Bongi keep such a matter from him (as if the girl didn’t feel horrible enough already). Bongi says she was going to tell him, but Donghae leaves without hearing her out and gets in a cab. Bongi is momentarily distracted by a phone call from her mother to go to the market and is displeased to see Donghae and Anna getting in a cab and leaving.
Meanwhile, Pil Jae and Kang Jae are out looking for buyers for their cabbages. Kang Jae then thanks Pil Jae for helping look for places to sell cabbages – even leaving work early. Pil Jae tells him that’s okay as he left around lunchtime. Pil Jae then explains that the restaurant’s owner was bad news and then when he started the restaurant, hit the jackpot. Life is just like that – down one moment, up the next. They go inside and the owner tells them that kimchi is very important to the restaurant so they need the best cabbages. Kang Jae tells the man not to worry as he will get the best. Kang Jae then comments that the restaurant is adding a lot of ginger to the kimchi, but since it is getting colder, their should be less ginger to make the kimchi fresher. The owner complains saying that they have to be generous with ingredients (meanwhile Pil Jae is filching a taste). Pil Jae then says that the man should listen to Kang Jae as he used to export kimchi to Japan and the US. Kang Jae tells Pil Jae that is okay and then gets a call from his daughter.
Sun Ok is at the market and is surprised when Kang Jae arrives. She asks why he is there and he said that Bongi called him. This upsets Sun Ok and she wonders who Bongi takes after. Kang Jae’s reply “You know who” as his daughter is as sweet and considerate as she is. Kang Jae then says he called ahead and talked to a guy about getting some fresh water eel. He propels Sun Ok forward and she tells him not to joke and he says that he isn’t. While Kang Jae is getting the eels, Sun Ok wonders aloud if he is feeling guilty (which he should for going behind her back) and then wonders if she should forgive him as she shouldn’t be only yelling at her husband. Kang Jae then turns and shows her the eels which are quite big and lively. Sun Ok finally cracks a smile and starts laughing. Looks like all is forgiven.
Back at the Lee house, Kang Jae dumps the eels into a bucket of ice water and Sun Ok tells him to leave them alone as she will take care of them. He asks if she has enough strength and she replies that she will do whatever she can for her son. Kang Jae then laughs about how frightened she was of eels when they first married and how they would slip from her hands and fall into the sink. Sun Ok tells him that was a long time ago and that he should concentrate on his cabbage patch. She then asks if it is far from their house. Kang Jae then asks if she wants to see it. Sun Ok refuses and gets to work cleaning the eel.
Back at the station, Saewa is getting bawled out by her PD. He asks if she thinks this position is a joke. First she said that Donghae agreed to do the s how, but then Donghae said he never heard about it, then Anna was supposed to do the show and she ended up not doing it. How on earth can he work with Saewa if she is being so unprofessional? Saewa tries to defend herself, but the PD plows on and won’t let her speak. It was a live show – how can Saewa salvage the mess she made? The guest had his say and then left in the middle of recording and the phone lines and website are going crazy right now. Saewa apologizes and the PD asks why she couldn’t stay calm and had to stammer her way through the rest of the show. The PD then says that he heard she was the best out of a class of 30 – he must have heard run. He leaves and Saewa fights back tears.
On Jeju, Jun returns to his room to get a big surprise. There waits Hye Sook. Jun asks what she is doing there and Hye Sook tells him that she brought the documents he needed. Jun is confused as he thought she was going to fax them over. He then says that she likes to surprise people, but this time she’s gone too far. Jun says that his wife should have called him first. Hye Sook apologizes for surprising him, but thought that he would be happy to see her. Jun states that they are not in their 20s anymore – what will people think? Um, hello? They are married for Pete’s sake, why would people gossip? And that is why Hye Sook mentions. They are married so people shouldn’t talk, plus she worked nights for four days just to be able to attend the seminar with her husband. She even brings up how she thought they were going together and even cleared her schedule for two days. Jun says that Hye Sook knows what he means – she is acting in an unexpected way. Hye Sook says it looks like he isn’t happy and she is sorry she came. She then takes her luggage and stalks out.
Jun runs after her and says that she cannot just leave like that. Hye Sook, hand on the door of a cab, says she doesn’t want to ruin his seminar. Jun looks around and says her leaving like that will make him feel bad all day (basically he’s just afraid of his reputation being tarnished if people learn his wife stormed out after just arriving – what an ass). Jun looks around again and asks her to at least eat. When she says nothing, he brings up the fact that they had their honeymoon on Jeju. She then turns to face him and we cut to Donghae.
Back in Seoul, Anna is crying and huddled in bed while Donghae is trying to calm her and Bongi watches on. Donghae tells her to stop crying and look at him. Anna keeps crying and tells her son that she hates him. Donghae then says that he went on TV just for her, kept the promise to Saewa, and said what he wanted to say to his father. Anna, still crying, is upset that Donghae said such hateful things to his father – what if James refuses to come find them now? Bongi touches Donghae’s shoulder and says that she will stay with Anna so he should go rest since he doesn’t look well. The sick Donghae gets up and says they will talk later.
As he leaves Anna’s room, a furious Saewa stalks into the hallway. Just great. The two go outside and Saewa immediately lights into Donghae. It was her first show, she had worked so hard to become an announcer and that show was her chance to prove herself but Donghae ruined it! Um, he didn’t – she did by lying to him and keeping the secret from him. She asks how he could do that and the equally angry Donghae says he should be asking her that. He asks how he could go behind his back and put Anna on TV and then not even say anything to him when they had their date the other day. Saewa tells Donghae that Anna wanted to go on TV and find James. Donghae says even so Saewa should have stopped Anna. There will be whisperings behind Anna’s back and people will pity his mother. Saewa should have stopped that. Saewa glares at him and asks who cares if anyone pities Anna (omo, that’s his mother we’re talking about)? It’s no big deal if Anna is pitied, and if it is, Donghae could have done it for Saewa. Donghae asks why he should let Koreans pity him – why? Oh, that chip of his needs to be toned down a bit. How can you hate an entire country and it’s people just because you’re Korean grandparents put their daughter up for adoption and your Korean father abandons your mother?
Donghae then says that Saewa knows how hard he worked to support himself and Anna after the jerk left and yet she wanted him to go on TV to look for James? Saewa should know how hard that is for him. Saewa’s classic line (and it is classic already because she has used it multiple times already): “How can you say you love me if you can’t do that much for me?” So, this girl expects Donghae to do everything for her without giving him anything but herself in return? Sheesh. Needless to say, Donghae is shocked by this. Saewa says that he is holding on to his past and his pain so hard and loving her with what’s leftover – she doesn’t want that. I don’t think that is entirely true. Before Donghae can say anything, she again brings up that it was her first show ever and he of all people was the one to ruin it for her. Saewa then says that Donghae doesn’t know what she wants nor what his mother wants and turns to leave. Donghae grabs her arm, but she shakes loose and stalks off. She does have some validity to her argument – but she is mostly being selfish.
Do Jin catches glimpse of Saewa’s retreating back and immediately rushes out to follow her. The unhappy Saewa is less than thrilled to see Do Jin who says it seems like he only gets to meet her once in a million years. He looks at his watch and says that it’s not time to hit the gym yet. He notices Saewa’s expression and asks what is wrong. She turns her head away and tries to leave, but Do Jin grabs her arm. She tells him to let go, but he refuses and the next thing you know, they are in a car speeding down the road. Do Jin tells Saewa that he normally doesn’t let girls in the car he loves so much, but she is special. He then tells Saewa that she should thank his car later. He then says that he doesn’t know what is going on, but she can take it out on him. Saewa looks at him and he smiles at her. Hmm, I think he just might be too good for our career hungry Saewa.
At the Lee house, Pil Jae returns home and is greeted by a happy Songi (his daughter). She comments on him being home early and he says he will have to go out later for the night shift. Pil Jae then asks if Sun Ok is cooking something good. Songi replies that Sun Ok and Kang Jae brought back eel and are cooking it – she thinks they must have made up. Pil Jae asks if she is happy and Songi replies that she is as she hates it when adults fight. Pil Jae goes into the kitchen and asks if he can have some eel, too. Sun Ok refuses and tells him he can have the side dishes – she only thinks of her son’s wellbeing at times. Pil Jae is annoyed that he isn’t getting any and Sun Ok complains that she is unhappy with Pil Jae helping Kang Jae to buy the patch behind her back. Pil Jae says he is sick of getting all the blame and stalks out to the laundry. As he takes a pair of boxers down, Sun Ok tells him to stop taking her husband’s and buy his own. Pil Jae asks who cares as they are brothers, plus that pair had a hole in them. Sun Ok then comments about marrying Tae Hoon off and rushes back in to look after the boiling stew.
Sool Nyeo has returned home and is still furious about Sun Ok constantly bragging up Sun Ok’s son and husband to Sool Nyeo. She then remembers Saewa’s dilemma and wonders how her daughter is doing with her first show ruined. Sool Nyeo then seems mail addressed to Sae Young and wonders what her youngest bought. She opens the letter and looks at the credit card statement and notices a razor. Why would a girl need to purchase a razor? Sool Nyeo then goes to her daughter’s door. Inside her room, Sae Young is talking to Tae Hoon. She is preparing to go out and meet him for the last time as he will be taking his exams soon and can’t be distracted. As she goes to leave, Sool Nyeo quickly rushes and hides. She overhears Sae Young say “oppa” and when her daughter leaves, Sool Nyeo says she’s got Sae Young now.
Bacl at the Camilla, Bongi has returned to work in the kitchen. A fellow chef, surprised by her early return, asks what she is doing there. Bongi asks if he’s glad to see her and her friend asks if she is practicing. Bongi says that she is making something for someone and is immediately scolded for using hotel food to give to someone free. Bongi then states that she paid for everything she is using. I definitely have a hunch that she is making food for our sick Donghae. And I am right.
Bongi goes into Donghae’s room where he was watching over his mother. She tells him that she has brought food that’ll help blind men see and Shimcheong dance (not sure about the last reference)! Donghae asks who Shimcheong is. Bongi tells him to never mind and grabs his hand and leads him to the table. He immediately pulls his hand back and asks what she is doing. Nice, making an awkward situation more awkward. Bongi then tells him how she noticed he didn’t really eat a lot when he was with his team. She then reveals sweet potato fried rice. Bongi then tells him that there is nothing like eating sweet food when you’re depressed. Donghae asks how much and Bongi says that he only needs to thank her. She then says that he shouldn’t have fought with Saewa if he was going to dwell on it. At Donghae’s look, Bongi then says that it looked like he had the flu yesterday. Donghae thanks her and says he will buy her lunch in return.
As he eats, Bongi says that she believes Saewa is the one to blame (they all have to shoulder partial blame for the other day’s disaster), but Donghae was in the wrong too. Bongi says that Saewa has always been very proud and hates it the most when someone steps on her pride. Bongi encourages Donghae to apologize if nothing more then for the sake of the wedding dress. Donghae came to Korea to marry Saewa, not fight with her. Plus, he’ll be leaving in a week. Donghae, changing the subject, thanks her for the food again, but tells her it doesn’t taste the greatest. Pride pricked, Bongi asks why he is still eating it then. Donghae smiles at this. He apologizes and asks for a favor. Bongi asks what and Donghae asks for Saewa’s address surprising Bongi.
We then cut to Sool Nyeo who is stalking the oblivious Sae Young while Sun Ok is having the eel prepared and packaged for Tae Hoon. Looks the shit is about to hit the fan! Sool Nyeo gets out of her car and wonders where her daughter got off to. She then looks around and recalls that is where people live who are taking the bar exam (how does she know that?). Sun Ok arrives at Tae Hoon’s and sees Sae Young. She wonders what Sae Young is doing there and who she is seeing. Tae Hoon is standing on his head and saying he has only one more week left to go when there is a knock. He lets Sae Young in who complains about her legs and he scolds her for carrying such a heavy bag. Sun Ok then arrives and notices her son’s door is open a hair. Inside, Tae Hoon is massaging Sae Young’s legs and telling her that they have to control themselves for one week. He asks if if Sae Young understands and she says yes. Sae Young then asks how Tae Hoon can drink the eel extract everyday. Tae Hoon says he can’t throw it away and in walks his mother shocking Sae Young. Sae Young then cries out “ahjumma” and Tae Hoon looks behind him.
We then cut to Saewa and Do Jin who asks if Saewa is feeling better. Saewa asks if he wants her to thank him. Do Jin smiles and says that it sounds like she is back to normal, causing Saewa to smile as well. Meanwhile, Bongi and Donghae are searching for Saewa’s house. Bongi can’t remember exactly which building it is, but she knows she has the right complex. Just as she recalls the building, Saewa and Do Jin pull up. Bongi notices this – does Donghae as well? Who knows as this is where the episode ends.