“The World of the Married” once again delivers an excellent episode with tight plotting, tense conflicts and powerful emotions. As a whole, this show has done so well in plotting the individual episodes while also building up the big pieces. As we move towards the final two episodes, we can see the storylines being tied up not in a neat bow, but in a gradual and meaningful way.
This episode sees Sun Woo sinking to her deepest as she has completely lost all fighting spirit. Having fought so many battles and won, she sees that at the end of it all, all that she has lost all she wanted to hold on to – her marriage, her job and her son. Joon Young’s hatred towards her cuts her the deepest and after a mistake at work, she decides to quit and leave Gosan to find her friend at the beach hospital. She is in so much pain that she is unconvinced that time will heal any of her wounds and pain. She decides to take her life, but is saved in the nick of time by Yoon-Ki.
While all this is happening, Tae Oh is similarly in emotional turmoil. Although he has achieved his revenge upon Sun Woo, he feels empty and worried for her. Da Kyung further attempts to assert control over Tae Oh and Joon Young by sending Joon Young to counselling. Tae Oh concedes even though he does not agree, yet he keeps trying to call Sun Woo and asks Joon Young if his mum has called. Not knowing where she is drives him crazy. While at the hospital and chatting with Myung-Sook, they see Yoon-Ki running off to save Sun Woo. He also speeds off to save her, but arrives only to see Sun Woo crying in the arms of Yoon-Ki. He returns to his mansion and breaks down before a dinner with Chairman Cha’s family.
All seems calm during the dinner with Chairman Cha’s family, but it is clear that Tae Oh’s mind is distracted. As the adults mingle after dinner, Jenny’s cries are heard. Da Kyung goes up, sees Joon Young playing with Jenny and her insecurities flare up and she over-reacts. Emotions snowball, leading to Tae Oh giving Joon Young a slap for speaking back to Da Kyung.
Sun Woo wakes up in the hospital as she hears Joon Young calling him. He’s not there though, so she immediately tries to call him back. Eventually he picks up and asks her to come and get him. Of course, she runs off to get him, which leads to a dramatic showdown between her and Da Kyung, where she reveals that she slept with Tae Oh. The next episode will clearly deal with the fall out of this.
Kim Hee-Ae once again delivers an outstanding performance – her breakdown is heartbreaking and painful to watch; similarly, her reclaiming of her son is victorious and rewarding. In fact, not just her, but also Park Hae Joon and Han So-Hee also carry their roles very well, bringing out the conflicted feelings they feel. I was particularly impressed by Han So-Hee and how she was able to portray the insecurities and vulnerability beneath the strong front she was portraying.
In the midst of all the strife and pain, there’s a spark of joy as we see Ye Rim and Ja Hyuk’s sweet and heartfelt interactions that do not feel contrived in anyway. The earlier episodes of the series were dark with hardly any humour or joy, but as the show moves, we at least get hints of happiness as we see Ja Hyuk making a genuine attempt to build a relationship with Ye Rim.
“The World of the Married” has remained consistently strong throughout its run, growing from strength to strength. I’m looking forward to how it ends next week. I’m certain that we will end on a positive note for Sun Woo and Joon Young. However, what that positive ending entails is still uncertain – is it a reunion with Tae Oh? Or will she end up with Yoon-Ki? I’m happy with either ending, but certainly Tae Oh has a long journey towards redemption.