May Queen Episode 2 Recap

Methinks I shall try to keep a schedule of getting Saturday’s episode up on Sunday and Sunday’s episode up on Monday. Hopefully I will be able to do that time permitting.

I have to say that Seo Young Joo (playing Il Mun) is doing an incredible job. While Maru from CYHMH was abrasive and not nice, you could really see the conflict in him and it made him a bit more likeable. Plus, nearing the end of the childhood segment, he actually did what he could to save his father and spent the rest of his youth trying to make up for the bad person he was. With Il Mun, even though you know his attitude stems from the treatment of his father to him thanks to Chang Hee’s superior grades, he just seems bad to the bone. I wonder if we’ll get an adult Il Mun or not since there is no cast list which has adult cast for Hae Joo’s younger siblings and Il Mun, but sometimes it takes awhile for cast lists to be updated with full details, too.

I have to give major props also to Park Gun Tae and Park Ji Bin. I would gush over Kim Yoo Jung, but don’t think its 100% necessary as she’s always been a great child actress to me. She’s good at playing girls with spunk and sass and her accent and colloquial way of speaking is awesome (whoops, gushing like a proud unnie). Anywho, the raw emotion that PGT shows in this episode alone…freaking amazing! Plus we have the baby-faced PJB acting like a total cocky player. Loving it. If you go by childhood actors alone, it would be really, really hard to say who Hae Joo should end up with. I was half expecing Il Mun to be a contender for her heart, but am rather glad that did NOT happen. Okay, okay, enough gushing over these great child actors and on to the meat of what happened this episode.

Okay, so remember Il Hwa was giving Hae Joo the expensive caledon vase and dropped it? Well, Geum Hee rushes in and Il Hwa immediately denies it was her doing. Hae Joo immediately rushes to pick up the pieces and then it is found out that Il Hwa had a cut on her leg. Geum Hee overreacts and sends the maid for the first aid kit (well, sending for the kit wasn’t overreacting, but you’d have thought Geum Hee was mortally wounded or something—I get it, it all has to do with Yoo Jin’s “death” but still). Geum Hee insists on an apology. Hae Joo quickly apologizes, but does insist she did not break the vase, which annoys Geum Hee since that means Hae Joo is implying Il Hwa is a liar. The maid then points out Hae Joo’s leg which has a much larger cut and was bleeding way more than Il Hwa’s. The other girl starts her baby crying, yes, she literally sounds like a baby, and Hae Joo immediately assures her that she is fine, it’s just blood. LOL. WHAT a priceless reaction from our leading lady.

Jang returns home and asks how the pear orchard task is going. Gi Chul stutters that it is going okay, but Jang is not happy that Gi Chul is at the house instead of doing the task. Poor Gi Chul is cowed, but what can he do? This was the exchange he made for his life (and his son’s, too, if you think about it). Jang goes into the house just as Geum Hee finished patching her biological daughter’s leg. Hae Joo is introduced as Il Hwa’s friend and Jang comments on how long it’s been since his darling daughter brought a friend home from school. Hae Joo is then invited for dinner, she declines, but is made to stay. The meal is a veritable feast for the 13-year-old who is more used to cheap food and hunger. She shows just how poor she is and you can see the distaste roiling off of Il Mun. Just where did his little sister find such a friend? Oh, and Geum Hee took the fall for Il Hwa as Jang is less likely to be mad at her and punish her than he would his little girl.

After dinner, Il Hwa takes out a cart and hands it over to Hae Joo so she can take some bottles home. Okay, now I know Hae Joo is from the country and all…but to not know essentially what a dolly is…is that possible? Sometimes in dramas they way they portray the poorer country folk make you wonder if the people are as backwoods and unknowledgeable as they seem, or if it is just hyperbole (over exaggeration for effect). Anyways, just when you think Il Hwa might not be all that bad, she basically tells Hae Joo the reason she had her come over is to show Hae Joo just how great she is. Il Hwa wants an apology for the slap and treatment. Hae Joo does not wish to, but she does give a rather insincere apology when pressed. Hae Joo (who seems quite a bit older actually—and I’m not talking about in regards to maturity, but rather the actress play Il Hwa seems so much younger) then happily takes the cart and bottles and heads home followed by Gi Chul.

Hae Joo meets her father on the road home and he is immediately concerned about her injury. Hae Joo assures him he is fine. He asks if she was hurt while gathering all those bottles. Hae Joo tries to assure him that she did not get hurt like that, but Hong Chul does not believe his daughter. Seeing her hurting and sacrificing for him hurts him like a physical blow. He tells her to stop doing such things as he found work in a shipyard (thankfully not Jang’s). Hae Joo is happy to hear her father found work. He then piggybacks her back to their house where Dal Soon immediately lights into her for being out so late. Hong Chul defends Hae Joo saying she was collecting bottles in order to buy food for dinner and all Dal Soon cares about is that she is very pregnant and being made to cook which can’t be good for the baby. Omo. Are you kidding me? That woman isn’t that delicate. What an unreasonable woman.

Hong Chul then spots Gi Chul and the two talk. Gi Chul tells Hong Chul to keep Hae Joo away from the Jangs as Mr. Jang does not like kids coming and going from the house. Hong Chul heads back where Young Joo has come out and is hugging her unnie. The little girl smells the good on her sister and this immediately makes Hae Joo feel bad. How could she enjoy the meal happily when her siblings were at home hungry and not able to taste such good food? Hong Chul then comes back and asks after what happened at the Jang house. When Hae Joo says she was welcomed and was treated well by Jang, Hong Chul wonders at the reason Gi Chul would lie to him. Well…if Jang knew who Hae Joo really was, he wouldn’t have been so nice.

The next day Jang goes to visit the orchard where he runs into none other than Kang San’s grandfather! Here, I thought Kang San’s grandfather [Go In Bum as Kang Dae Pyung] was just a lowly shipyard worker. Now what Kang San asked his grandfather in the first episode made sense (basically why is he out working on a ship again). Well, it turns out that Kang wants the pear orchard himself for his own shipbuilding enterprise. Kang is also not happy that Jang is getting out of the petroleum business and getting more into the shipbuilding business. The two old codgers trade thinly veiled barbs, but Jang has the last word when he says Kang should stay home and worry about his grandson. That really strikes a nerve. Can’t say as I blame him for that one. Children are always sensitive subjects and weaknesses in dramas.

Kang returns to the shipyard livid and takes it out on his poor staff. It’s at this time that Yoon Jung Woo [Lee Hoon] shows up. And just who is he? Well, I didn’t notice this in the previous episode, but Jung Woo was the man in the military uniform bawling his eyes out and holding Yoo Jin at Hak Soo’s funeral. He is also the same man who stopped and helped the Chun family. So who exactly is he? Jung Woo is none other than Hak Soo’s baby brother! Oh, what a very tangled web we have weaved. I would say that these entanglements are too convenient, but, you know, life is actually strange in how people can be connected so tightly without even knowing it. Okay, so Kang wants Jung Woo to come work for him, but Jung Woo does not wish to. He has come to pay his respects since he’s back in Ulsan. Kang then reveals that the orchard Hak Soo gifted the village is being targeted by Jang. Jung Woo says that he doesn’t care and just leaves. I don’t think that’s 100% true, but, you know.

At school, Chang Hee is gifted with a trophy. You know that math competition? He placed first! Well, the boy doesn’t seem all that thrilled about it. I mean, you’d think he’d at least crack a smile or look happy, but he doesn’t. Chang Hee is actually pretty good about keeping that straight face…or uncomfortable face. Probably because he knows he has hell to pay with Il Mun’s jealousy. After school, Chang Hee is biking home when he comes across Hae Joo picking herbs. She doesn’t look up and walks into the path of his bicycle. He swerves to avoid her and ends up falling down the hill. Hae Joo is immediately sorry, but wonders why he can’t watch where he’s going. She changes her tune when she realizes it’s the same boy who helped with the bees. Chang Hee also tells her that she should learn not to pop up out of nowhere.

It turns out that Chang Hee’s bike has slipped the chain. Hae Joo gets the chain back into place easily enough, but there are two broken spokes. Hae Joo promises to fix them, when Chang Hee goes through his backpack and pulls out the now broken trophy. Hae Joo feels even worse. The two then head to the shipyard where Hae Joo says that her father works. She takes the bike and heads in. She calls out to her father but receives no answer. It turns out that her father is out at the moment and it is Kang San using his tools. This (and how Kang San referred to her father) annoys Hae Joo. She snatches the welder and mask away and quickly fixes the spokes of the bicycle quickly much to Kang San’s astonishment. When she goes to work on the trophy, Kang San stops her and says that welding method doesn’t work well for copper. They need to try oxygen welding instead. This is the first time Hae Joo has heard of such a thing. Kang San assures her there are all different kinds of welding and he lists them all. Hae Joo is impressed. So he can do all of that? Kang San smiles and says sure. LOL. Lying through his teeth.

Chang Hee then shows up, surprising Kang San. Hae Joo is also surprised to find the two boys know each other. She learns that they are in the same class and are “friends.” Why do I put that in quotation marks? Well, I’m not saying that Chang Hee doesn’t consider  Kang San a friend, but I must admit it seems more like Kang San considers them as friends as it doesn’t really seem Chang Hee is close to anyone. You can just smell the love triangle [well, square I suppose if you add Il Hwa, but I don’t consider her a real contender in this despite the huge spoiler given away in the cast bios]. The three then continue on to a different part of the shipyard where they can do oxygen welding. Hae Joo is amazed by the shipyard and Kang San seems happy by her reactions while Chang Hee hangs a bit back. After this distraction, the trio head to the welding place.

Kang San shows Hae Joo how to use the oxygen welder and how you keep the copper from melting when welding it together. Hae Joo eagerly absorbs this and tries her hand at it. And wouldn’t you know, she’s like a pro. This is all thanks to her father who taught her all of this. I like the fact that she’s got her own set of morals and has her skills that she is not ashamed of. She’s great. The trophy is soon as good as new. Hae Joo hands it back to the happy Chang Hee. She then takes it back and polishes it with her shirt. She feels badly that she didn’t have polish available. Such a cute scene really. You can tell that both Chang Hee and Kang San are quite taken by her.

On the way out of the shipyard, Chang Hee and Hae Joo talk. He is impressed by her skills that she learned from her father. He is also shocked when she sees the time and says she needs to go home and cook dinner. What can’t this girl do? He actually offers her a ride home on his bike. Awww! How sweet. Hae Joo happily accepts the offer. Kudos to Hae Joo for not being ashamed of where she lives or showing him. It seems like she is interested in Chang Hee as well. But you know that since Kang San is the annoying one who constantly teases her that he’ll have a special place in her affections as well. That’s just how things work in dramaland (and real life sometimes, too). LOVED the awkward bump moment when Hae Joo had to tighten her grip on Chang Hee’s waist and the two got a wee bit uncomfortable.

In the Park household, Gi Chul is elated over his son’s trophy. He knew is son could do it. He’s so proud of him. this earns Chang Hee a giant hug. After his father goes out to cook the meat to celebrate, only then does Chang Hee allow himself a happy smile as he looks at the trophy. Well…I guess he shows a stoic face at school and that praise because of Il Mun and because of the fact that the person whose praise matters most is his father’s. That night Jang practices putting and warns Gi Chul that Kang is circling the area of the orchard hoping to swoop in and snatch if from Jang. He then tells Gi Chul that he will have to work some nights. What does that mean? Gi Chul will be doing something he shouldn’t be doing in order to obtain the orchard for Jang. In this case they pour chemicals at the base of the pear trees. Sigh.

At school the midterm results are announced. Guess who’s in first place with a perfect score? Yep, Chang Hee. Apparently this kid has had nothing but perfect scores since elementary school. Wowza. That’s hard to achieve. The teacher gushes over this and you can see Il Mun snapping like the head of his pen. Noticing this, the teacher backtracks and congratulates Il Mun on being number two. Epic teacher fail. Oh, and Kang San who is napping in the back of the class is then teased by the teacher for always getting zeroes. This doesn’t phase Kang San at all and he happily goes back to napping. LOL. Talk about extreme differences in these three boys.

After school, Kang San runs into Hae Joo. He has a pet name for her already. He calls her “welder.” She’s not happy with this nickname oddly enough. He wishes to talk to her about something, but Il Hwa intervenes. She has a huge crush on Kang San! That…kind of shocks me. I would actually have suspected her of liking Chang Hee if anyone, but it’s Kang San instead. This might be because Kang San is technically more on equal social status even if he doesn’t behave like it. Or not. She drags poor Kang San away while trying to make plans for a weekend “date.”

At the Jang house, Il Mun delivers his report card. While Geum Hee praises him for achieving second, Jang is NOT happy. The main reason is because Il Mun is losing to Chang Hee. When Il Mun leaves to go to a study session thingy (I think), Geum Hee chides Jang for not recognizing Il Mun’s success. Jang replies that a well-fed lion will never match a hungry dog. Ouch. This really seems to hurt Il Mun. So, of course, Il Mun takes it out on Chang Hee and his father. He orders Gi Chul to bring him water and constantly dumps it on the ground. He finally explains that its because its so hot that he needs cold water, not warm. The problem is that the Park’s don’t have a refrigerator. Il Mun then orders Gi Chul to go into the house, get water from their fridge and ask Geum Hee for ice (he knows how strained Gi Chul’s and Geum Hee’s relationship is). The angry Chang Hee grabs the glass and goes into the house instead.

Now, all I have to say here is OMG!!! Park Gun Tae was awesome. His anger, the shaking…was so intense and believable you could literally see the rage he was trying to desperately to suppress. He finally gets himself somewhat composed and heads back outside to where Il Mun has demanded his report card. Gi Chul reluctantly hands it over. Chang Hee then slams the water down on the table. Il Mun picks it up and proceeds to dump this out all over his report card. Sheesh. And then we get into a fight. Chang Hee finally attacks Il Mun after Il Mun began insulting Gi Chul. What a scrapper, our Chang Hee. Gi Chul gets them separated and gets down on his knees crying and begging Il Mun to keep quiet about this incident to Jang. This makes poor Chang Hee break down and cry as well. He kneels with his father and angrily pounds the ground with his fist. Yes, he may be brighter than Il Mun, but when it comes right down to it, thanks to Il Mun’s social status, he’s nothing compared to the other, vicious boy. Again, such amazing raw emotion. Well played, well played. This scene made me angry, broke my heart, and made me want to hug the hurting boy. Oh, and we end this with Chang Hee running to that overlook that the characters always seem to go back to and screaming. Can’t blame the boy.

Jung Woo is out walking when he comes across a village elder from the orchard. He learns that the pear trees keep dying. They don’t know why that is. Some think its because of the pollution from Jang’s petroleum company. Nope, it’s from Gi Chul’s night work. The older man then leaves after Jung Woo assures him he has food. Looks like Jung Woo is caring just a wee bit about that orchard now. He goes there and recalls the past with him, his brother, Geum Hee and Yoo Jin (I call the younger Hae Joo by her real name, sorry if that confuses you). Will he go against Jang’s destruction?

As he continues on his way he runs into Hae Joo picking herbs. The two then head back to the Chun household where Dal Soon is cooking potato pancakes with the potatoes that Jung Woo had given them earlier. Hae Joo immediately continues the cooking in place of her mother. When Hong Chul talks about how good rice wine would go with the pancakes, Hae Joo hurries to go buy some. That was kind of defusing the awkward situation in which Dal Soon complained about money and food. Jung Woo watches the young girl go. She is really a pretty girl. He wishes to adopt her has his niece (eyeroll). LOL. She is his niece. Not that anyone would know that beyond Gi Chul. What annoys me is how vocally Dal Soon disparages her adopted daughter’s prettiness. Jung Woo must be blind.

I don’t know if it’s the same day or the next, but the creditors the Chun family was running from find them thanks to the truck driver that Dal Soon angered with her antics. The thugs start tossing things around and start beating on Hong Chul. Surprisingly enough, not just Hae Joo, but also Sang Tae jump in to defend their father. When his kids start getting pushed around, Hong Chul does his best to fight back, but gets the crap kicked out of him instead. When Dal Soon falls to the ground complaining about stomach pains and her losing her baby (this is an obvious act, mind you), the thugs leave taking Hae Joo with them. Hong Chul rushes after them and swears to give up his own life for his daughter’s. Hae Joo’s repsonse? The men can beat her, sell her, kill her—it doesn’t matter. They just are not allowed to touch her family or treat her father like that anymore. What a girl, what a girl. The men do leave, but swear they will be back to collect with interest. Poor Hong Chul feels even more like a failure with this turn of events.

Il Hwa calls up Kang San and invites him over, but the cocky Kang San refuses. He’s got things to do, but he refuses to say just what. Il Hwa is unhappy, but she does threaten to come seek him out. Kang San doesn’t seem too concerned. He hangs up talking about how of course Il Hwa likes a boy with good looks like himself. LOL. I had to snort at that. Really. It’s just so darn egotistical and cute. We then cut to Hae Joo who has brought steamed potatoes to her upset father. He doesn’t want to eat, but Hae Joo coddles him into it. The man starts to tear up as his daughter vows to collect bottles and do what she can to ensure the debt gets paid off. Hong Chul then takes the girl out for a spin on a boat that was repaired (to make sure everything’s okay, you know). Hae Joo loves it! She feels like she is flying. Her father lets her steer. It’s a really great father-daughter moments among all the other great father-daughter moments.

Kang San goes in search of Hae Joo in the shipyard where her father works. He asks a worker about her just as he spots her coming. He asks what she’s brought and the two fight over the bag she carries until it spills the potatoes inside. She must have been bringing more steamed potatoes for her father. Just as Kang San invites Hae Joo to go somewhere, Il Hwa pops up. LOVED Kang San’s expression when she does. Il Hwa says her mother is waiting and she has showed up to take Kang San home with her for lunch. Kang San promises to go only if Hae Joo goes as well. Il Hwa angrily invites the other girl, but Hae Joo refuses. When Kang San keeps insisting, Il Hwa finally badgers Hae Joo into going, too.

Oy. Talk about awkward. Geum Hee seems strained around Hae Joo (especially when the young girl asks to take food home to her family this time). Oh, and we have Il Hwa making sure to sit between Kang San and Hae Joo. Like that wasn’t obvious at all. While lunch goes on, the Parks pass by. Kang San asks Chang Hee to join them. Of course, Il Mun must starts his bullying of the Parks. He orders Gi Chul to eat with Chang Hee at a table farther away. Gi Chul declines as he must work for Jang (he’s again not happy to see Hae Joo there). Hae Joo is shocked to learn that Chang Hee is Mr. Park’s son. When Il Mun’s attitude worsens, Hae Joo has had enough and tries to take him in hand. She actually calls him “ssagaji.” This is actually a cruder reference to a rude person. Of course, Il Mun gets angry, but Hae Joo stands her ground—even when he throws water in her face and calls her a beggar. Kang San gets angry and Chang Hee is shocked. I think more shocking is when Hae Joo keeps her head held high and says that she is not a beggar.

And that’s where we leave this episode. NeeNee wants more, more, I tell you! This young cast is shaping up quite awesomely and the previews shows the bloom of young love between Hae Joo and Chang Hee. I am not 100% sure if all the previews will happen in the next episodes as the initial previews for this episode showed scenes that haven’t occurred yet. I think they focus more on the next episode, but really show more previews for further along down the road, too.

Oops. I forgot that during the dinner, Dal Soon discovers Young Joo missing. She asks Sang Tae if Hae Joo took Young Joo with her, but she didn’t. So where did the little girl go off to?

4 comments

  • hello friend this is ghsforever@soompi nice recapps cant wait for next week thank you 🙂

    • Hello chingu! 🙂
      Thanks for dropping a line. I can’t wait either!!! I’m anxiously awaiting to see how that intense dinner scene will end and the blossoming love between Chang Hee and Hae Joo.

  • Hey this is Weetziebat from Soompi ^^

    I cannot gush enough about the child actors~~ They are ALL amazing.

    I like that Il Hwa isn’t a complete brat. She quickly admits that the breakage of the vase was her fault, and does her best to try and make amends with Hae Joo by lending her the dolly to move the bottles. It seems as though she admires and likes Hae Joo, which will make it all the harder for me when they have their fall out (ie In Hwa marrying Chang Hee). I want there to be womance as well as bromance, lol.

    And Kang didn’t really take anything out on his staff. Rather, he has progressive, egalitarian views about the workplace. He doesn’t want his men to be lining up for him, because it’s not productive. In other workplaces, subordinates have to line up and bow when they see their boss. However, Kang would rather they be working instead of kowtowing to him. It’s kind of like he sees them all as equals and doesn’t buy into all that hierarchy baloney that’s part of the business culture in Korea. I think that’s how he can get down and work alongside his workers. Also, you can see that Kang wears a worker’s uniform while Jang wears a suit~~ Kang = good, fair boss. Jang = evil, exploitative boss.

    • Hello and welcome!

      I agree, the child actors are really doing an excellent job. I am happy to see these kids that I have been watching grow up become even more awesome actors.

      Il Hwa is a complicated little girl. I agree that she isn’t wholly bad. I think the main problems stem from how she was raised by Jang and Geum Hee. Jang teaches his children that they are superior to everyone and should not bow down to anyone. Geum Hee coddles the girl entirely too much thanks to losing Yoo Jin/Hae Joo when she was only 3 years old. Il Hwa has the chance to become decent and good, but I have a feeling that a great rift will definitely keep the two girls divided. I just hope Il Hwa won’t have a bad ending.

      I get that Kang is more egalitarian and definitely not a self-important elitest like Jang, but I have a feeling he wouldn’t have been quite so cranky with them if he hadn’t had that conversation with Jang earlier. Got to love the symbolism in kdramas. It’s not as in-your-face as it can be in other genres.

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