Through a disastrous turn of events, we get to see how W will turn out when the villain is in the author’s seat and it’s certainly a dark, dark world.
The episode begins back in Seong Moo’s home where he starts to give the villain a face. Things start to go wrong and get creepy when we see him picking up the picture of Goya’s painting of Saturn devouring his son and tearing it up. Suddenly the tablet glows and the villain taunts the dad and eventually pulls him into the screen, declaring that he will no longer be subject to the dad’s control and the roles will be reversed now. So dad draws him a gun and lots of bullets.
We return to last week’s scenes of the serial shooting in the studio and the villain’s lines to Kang Chul on how he loves his face have deeper meaning this time round because we know what has happened. We then switch over to the hospital scenes where Kang Chul requests for Yeon Joo’s assistance to help an injured woman. Someone notices that she’s not wearing the right doctor’s coat so she makes a run for it.
We get a series of scenes after that with Yeon Joo scrounging around the hospital, trying desperately to find food. She then proceeds to Soo Hee’s place which she still remembers the door code for and that’s where she’s discovered by Kang Chul. Pressed for the truth about her identity, she tells him a story about how her husband disappeared. Somewhat intrigued by her story, Kang Chul decides not to hand her over to the police but to keep her with him so he can find out more.
The villain then decides to collaborate with Assemblyman Han in framing Kang Chul by creating a voice recording of a quarrel between him and his dad and also by killing Ajusshi. Upon being accused, Chul makes a run for it but gets shot in the stomach, managing to muster up enough energy to make it to the car and drive away with Yeon Joo. She eventually takes over the driving and gets him some medical supplies, where she finds out that Kang Chul has been accused of murder. This leads to her realisation that something is amiss and she immediately gets Kang Chul to a safe location while she returns back to the real world to make sure that their separation was not in vain.
What a crazy, unexpected turn of events! I was expecting that the happy ending would not come so easy, but I certainly did not envision how things would go bad so quickly for Kang Chul. I am still wondering why Seong Moo seems to have so little control over the characters he created – surely as their creator, there should be more of a struggle for power rather than him simply becoming a robot that mindlessly follows orders? The constant allusion to Goya’s painting seems to suggest that the writer wants us to see the extent of damage that can happen when the author becomes “devoured”.
Once again, Kim Eui Sung’s stellar acting shines through as the villain with a face is even creepier and more menacing than the villain without a face! What I liked about the episode and the series as a whole is that it’s filled with characters who are constantly thinking, making decisions and moving ahead to gain an advantage to outsmart each other or to make the best of a situation.
The killer could have just killed Chul again to end off the story but that wouldn’t work in light of the ending that Seong Moo had planned. So he decides to use his new found control to turn things around and create evidence that will implicate Chul. He then decides to protect himself even further by working together with Assemblyman Han since he knows that Assemblyman Han might eventually kill him.
Yeon Joo also displays similar quick thinking in navigating this world now without her protagonist status. She becomes the heroine once again as she saves Kang Chul and brings him to a hiding place. She realizes that treating his wound within the comic book world would only be a stop gap measure and to truly save him, she needs to leave the comic book world so she kisses him and leaves. The dream reset may have caused Kang Chul to forget Yeon Joo and reset their relationship to zero, but what this episode shows us is that destiny will always bring both of them back together and Yeon Joo will once again save his life.
Taking the analogy further with the story of Saturn devouring his son, the myth goes that after realizing that his sons will overthrow him, Saturn ate his first two sons immediately after they were born. His wife Ops decided to put a stop to this and for her third son, Jupiter, she hid him away and saved his life. Kang Chul is the creation of both Yeon Joo and Seong Moo. After seeing her dad’s attempts to kill Kang Chul, she not only saves his life also inadvertently tries save him from the entrapment of the revenge thriller by “hiding” him away in her version of W as a romance having a happy ending. At this point it’s almost impossible to see how that happy ending can come about but having seen how the plot develops in such an unexpected get convincing manner, I have no doubt that the writer knows what she’s doing.
After thoughts [posted 12 hours after]
In my previous posts, I spoke about how what appears in the manhwa is an abridged version of what we see happening in each episode and there could be scenes that happened out of reader’s eyes. If that’s the case, then how much of what was happening to Seong Moo were the readers privy to?Specifically, were the scenes of the villain asking Dad to kill Ajusshi and then drawing a gun in Kang Chul’s hand also part of the manhwa?
When I first viewed the episode, I assumed the answer was yes and that manhwa readers knew everything that was happening. However, the more I think about it, the more it makes sense that the answer is no. If readers saw all that was happening, they would know Kang Chul was being framed, which would still keep him as the hero of the comic and therefore he should not be fading out. What is more likely therefore is that the villain selected scenes to appear in the manhwa that would discredit him as the hero, thus causing him to fade away.
In the world of the comic, a character’s ultimate destruction comes not through death, but through him or her losing his purpose and identity, which isn’t too different from the real world actually.