Pretty Man Episode 5 (Screen date: December 6, 2013, Friday)
Naughty or nice?
After collapsing into the arms of a puzzled Ma-Te at his doorstep, Yoo-Ra confides in him her sob story of constantly feeling overwhelmed by thoughts of her daughter growing up without a mother. Ex-stepmommy-in-law, Iron Lady Na Hong-Ran’s latest and hottest plans to banish the 6-year-old as far away overseas as possible proved too much for Yoo-Ra to bear. Empathizing with her pitiful plight, Ma-Te commits to hasten his mission to restore their respective places in the MG Group empire. (Aw, even the usually cool, calm, and collected Hong Yoo-Ra can be reduced to tears by the intimidating evil stepmommy!)
(Or so I thought…) While awaiting the elevator, Yoo-Ra checks her makeup in her pocket mirror and poutingly complains her mascara’s ruined. Then as the elevator doors close, she leeringly mutters, “Ma-Te, you’d better keep up!” (Keep up with what? I suppose she meant for him to keep up with stepmommy or risk losing the game? Apparently the whole sob scene was yet another of Yoo-Ra’s schemes. I’m still undecided whether this Fox is naughty or nice.)
Although I’m stuffing my face, I’m not really eating mom.
Upset from witnessing the emotionally-charged embrace between Ma-Te oppa and Yoo-Ra, our dearie Bo-Tong goes home to drown her sorrows in galbi (grilled marinated meat – yup, the ones meant for oppa) and soju (an alcoholic drink native to Korea). Drunk, distressed, and desperate to halt her mom’s endless taunts, she spouts nonsense that she’s found a job which provides room and board! (Aigoo Bo-Tong. What have you gotten yourself into?)
The pick-up service and move in.
When her mom excitedly wakes her up the next morning reminding her to get packing and going, Bo-Tong’s left with no choice but to accept David’s accommodation offer, much to David’s sheer delight. (Even his early morning coffee tastes exceptionally delightful with this piece of great news.)
Under the pretense of getting her address for rental contract purposes, David shows up at Bo-Tong’s home cum galbi restaurant requesting for something to eat. David can barely tuck into the scrumptious sausage soup meal prepared by Bo-Tong’s mom as he gets relentlessly interrogated by mommy and brother. (This is one of my favorite parts in this episode. It’s always entertaining to watch Bo-Tong’s “loving” scuffles with her mom and younger brother.)
At David’s house, Bo-Tong’s given a nice big room while David professes he’s addicted to glamping (glamour camping) in his backyard and therefore has no use for the room. (And so it is then our Average Dearie is now officially a tenant of the Male Kim Bo-Tong. Life’s about to get exciting!)
You gotta push the right button!
Impressed by Ma-Te’s pure sincerity, Electric Fairy quietly admits to herself her desire for him. Not wanting to achieve this by manipulative means, she endeavors to assist Ma-Te in achieving his dreams (in the hope of deeply moving, touching, and ultimately winning his heart in the end?).
A call to Iron Lady Na Hong-Ran reveals she is the one behind the vandalizing of Electric Fairy’s parents’ food van as a warning she’s not one to be taken lightly. (I did not see that!) Having regained her composure, Electric Fairy’s rebuttal renders Iron Lady speechless. (Hahaha…good on her! She absolutely needs some good talking to. I doubt she’ll be doing any more business with Electric Fairy from now on. Obviously, this is Electric Fairy’s so-called courtesy call to Na Hong-Ran to convey her decision to support Ma-Te, stifling any future dealings with the Iron Lady.)
Electric Fairy reveals to Ma-Te the secret to controlling people’s minds – buttons! Everyone has at least one button to their hearts. (In another of my favourite scenes, Electric Fairy, clearly perplexed upon seeing Bo-Tong for the first time, visualizes a multitude of buttons on Bo-Tong from top to toe. Seriously rib-tickling moment!) Intentionally made elusive by their owners for fear of exposing their weaknesses, observing body language is the key to exposing these hidden buttons.
Courting the effeminate MG Home Shopping Broadcasting Chief
When David’s efforts to convince his boss into approving the “Amazing Cleaning Socks” for broadcast fall flat, David and Bo-Tong (per Ma-Te’s instructions) devise a plan for Ma-Te oppa to coincidentally bump into him and hopefully work his charms.
The venue, a manicure salon! Yup, the effeminate manager goes there once a week to have his precious cuticles maintained. Not having mastered the button technique, Ma-Te guesses and presses the wrong button – that the manager is gay – with absolute crimson-red-face and I-wish-the-ground-would-open-up-and-swallow-me embarrassment for Ma-Te. And coming away with nothing to show for it. (Tsk. Tsk. Tsk. Poor Ma-Te. His otherworldly charms don’t work well on men, even effeminate ones.)
(I’m not sure if the actor playing David’s manager is effeminate in real life, but he portrays this role very effectively with comic results.)
In furthering her efforts to help Ma-Te, Electric Fairy plants the curiousity-piquing seed of white socks in Kim In-Joong’s mind. Who is Kim In-Joong? An outstanding Insurance Financial Consultant by profession, she’s the Queen of Connections and MG Home Shopping’s best friend. Yup, you guessed it…Kim In-Joong is Ma-Te’s challenge #3.
While sipping cups of chrysanthemum tea and discussing the latest path Ma-Te’s been directed towards, Yoo-Ra applauds Electric Fairy for her foresight. When warned things might get treacherous for Ma-Te now that In-Joong is in the picture, Yoo-Ra replies it’s a destiny she’ll have to face. Electric Fairy goes on to foretell that Yoo-Ra’s affection will protect her daughter from harm. (Seems her fortune-telling has changed dramatically since deciding she’ll root for Team Ma-Te. What can she really see? If she can only read people’s minds and manipulate them, how can she predict the future when it involves so many other uncertainties?)
Sold-out Amazing White Cleaning Socks…finally!
Kudos to Bo-Tong for her convincing performance, Kim In-Joong, while recalling the innuendo from Electric Fairy, uses her snap-of-a-finger influence to easily get the Amazing White Cleaning Socks approved airtime on MG Home Shopping! The result? Astounding success of course! The mountain of darned white socks Bo-Tong’s been struggling to sell for oppa effortlessly sold out during the half hour broadcast.
Just as the results are being announced, Ma-Te steps out of the studio to have a moment by himself to relish the joy and satisfaction of truly earning money for the first time in his life. Heartwarmingly, he thanks Bo-Tong for making it happen (but she’s obviously not there to hear this). And Ma-Te’s promised reward for Bo-Tong’s hard work? She’ll be allowed the pleasure of taking 10 pictures of him! (Gee, I could just smack him for his conceit but Bo-Tong was practically over the moon.)
Never before faced with a competitor for Bo-Tong’s affections, this episode introduces Ma-Te’s emerging possessiveness over Bo-Tong and jealousy towards David. How?
1). He gets all bent out of shape upon finding out Bo-Tong’s moved into David’s house. Stressing how dangerous men are, he insists Bo-Tong move back home until a more suitable arrangement can be made to ease her travel woes.
2). Although too cocky to call to find out, he can’t help being curious whether Bo-Tong has heeded his strict instructions to go back home.
3). When Bo-Tong refuses to leave David’s house while rationalizing she’s merely a tenant (with cheap rent to boot), Ma-Te decides to offload his homeless, former army friend, Jang Deok-Saeng there too. Ma-Te claims he’s recruited Deok-Saeng as a “Amazing Cleaning Socks” member to help in their efforts. (But you and I know what his true intentions are – to police the male and female Kim Bo-Tong! Are you sure this friend of yours is up for this job though Ma-Te?)
4). Minutes to the broadcast, David requests Bo-Tong breathes over a pair of those pesky white socks for good luck (while we hear him say to himself he’ll treasure her breath…hahaha). Ma-Te pushes Bo-Tong away and to David’s dismay, breathes on the whole length of the socks instead. (Priceless moment!)
5). He’s visibly jealous seeing Bo-Tong and David happily hugging each other in celebration after the sold-out socks success. That’s when he sees it, David’s button – Kim Bo-Tong!
6). Because of David’s complete adoration for Bo-Tong, Ma-Te loathes David’s guts.
This episode also sees David’s affection towards Bo-Tong and therefore animosity towards her curt and bossy pretty Ma-Te oppa escalating. Things he says to this effect:
1). To Ma-Te: Having known her for many years, you ought to know better the type of girl she is and not insinuate impropriety.
2). To Bo-Tong: If he’s tired from driving, he should be living in a nursing home.
3). To Ma-Te: The watering can she’s carrying around is obviously a handbag.
4). To Ma-Te: You have the talent of getting things done easily but yet you make a young woman slave for you.
5). David’s nicknames for Ma-Te Pretty-Bad-Busy-Oppa and Oppa-nim.
Stay tuned for… Episode 6 (Screen date: December 7, 2013, Saturday).