When one door closes, another one opens, but how long that door will stay ajar is never guaranteed. Although things are looking up for Young-bin, a few curveballs get thrown his way. After all, making a movie is a group endeavor, and there’s bound to be some creative differences or even just enmity without a legitimate reason. Relationships are everything in the entertainment industry, and a severed tie begets serious repercussions.
EPISODE 13 RECAP
On the roof of his building, CEO Ahn happily teaches Eun-gab, Young-bin, and Ho-jin how to swing their fishing rods now that they’re in the same boat (har) and will be working on Im Hwa-su together. The director is set to be YANG MAN-HO, who CEO Ahn says is an up-and-coming, award-winning filmmaker who’s made some great shorts.
Eun-gab, Ho-jin, and Young-bin find it odd that they’ll be meeting Director Yang at his home instead of outside, but they roll with it, and are dismayed to find that he’s a sloppy weirdo living in a pigsty. He’s hungover and noisily slurps on noodles while our trio sit awkwardly. Eun-gab suggests they relocate outside, but Director Yang says he’s a hermit until the script is finished. Just then, his girlfriend arrives, and he escorts her to her room, leaving our trio even more befuddled.
They return to the office where Eun-gab calls CEO Ahn to update him on their bizarre meeting. But CEO Ahn reassures him that weirdos make great movies. Eun-gab informs Young-bin that the deal will be signed after the script is completed, but that CEO Ahn will consider changing directors if Young-bin’s uncomfortable with Director Yang. Ho-jin’s miffed that the director dissed his face, and Eun-gab explains that there are two types of crazies—crazies who make good movies and crazies who are just plain crazy, and Director Yang is the latter. But Young-bin says he’ll hold off on deciding until he checks out Director Yang’s work.
Eun-gab surprises Ho-jin when he instructs him to start coming into his office for work; he wants to assign Ho-jin another actor to manage and even gives him office space, which Ho-jin organizes with Young-bin’s help. Ho-jin asks Young-bin if he’ll be okay with not being his sole client anymore, and Young-bin replies that he should do as he pleases, but warns against caring less about him. Young-bin’s relieved to hear things aren’t awkward between Ho-jin and Ji-ahn after not signing with CEO Kang, and jokes that Ho-jin already lost favor with his future mother-in-law.
Turtle and Joon are out shopping, and a female fan recognizes Joon from his variety program. She asks for a photo, and he happily obliges. But he turns sour when he finds the photo uploaded with a caption denoting him as a comedian instead of an actor. Turtle points out that he’s credited as a TV personality on portal sites, and Joon grumbles that an actor should act and that he’s tired of playing roles without names.
At Turtle’s recommendation, Joon reluctantly calls Eun-gab since he’s officially his agent now and broaches the portal site issue. Eun-gab asks Joey why she didn’t address this, but she doesn’t think she was instructed to.
Eun-gab receives great news: actor Oh Chang-seok will be signing with him. She’s never heard of him, and when asked when she’ll officially be hired as a manager, Eun-gab orders her to do her homework first since she doesn’t even know her actors.
Turtle and Joon return home and join Young-bin and Ho-jin as they’re about to check out Director Yang’s work. Ho-jin doesn’t believe crazies make good films and uses Park Chan-wook as an example of an auteur who’s normal.
By the end, no one can deny Director Yang’s cinematic talent. Ho-jin begrudgingly admits that he’d be perfect for Im Hwa-su. The next morning, Eun-gab runs into CEO Kang on his way to grab food. They bicker about how often they cross paths and who liked this restaurant first until CEO Kang kicks Eun-gab in the shin.
Eun-gab returns to his office and finds Oh Chang-seok waiting. Chang-seok clarifies that he hasn’t confirmed anything yet, even though Eun-gab believed he already did during their phone call. Eun-gab’s grumbling about his wishy-washiness when Joey enters the room. Chang-seok likes her and tells Eun-gab that he’ll sign the contract right away if Joey can be his manager.
After the meeting, Joey asks Eun-gab if she can actually be Chang-seok’s manager. But Eun-gab orders her to wait until she’s able to write in Hangul well, to which she replies that she’s already proficient.
Young-bin and Ho-jin are back at Director Yang’s messy pad, this time with Turtle and Joon. Director Yang’s impressed by Turtle’s superior video game skills and admits that he likes Turtle. He draw’s Ho-jin’s ire again when he repeats his jab about Ho-jin looking like his old bully from his army days.
Ho-jin asks for a specific completion date of the script, but Director Yang tells him to stop nagging. Ho-jin’s fed up and asks him to stop with the bully comments, and Young-bin tries to help by informing Director Yang that Ho-jin has an eye for movies.
Director Yang heard about Joon’s wish to play one of Im Hwa-su’s subordinates in his movie and asks Joon to audition then and there. Joon overdoes it per usual, but the director surprisingly likes Joon’s dramatic flair.
Eun-gab greets Ho-jin in his brand-new office, but notices him looking unhappy. Ho-jin says it’s because Director Yang continues to pick on him, but there’s nothing he can do since Young-bin likes the guy, and he’s a skilled filmmaker.
Eun-gab refers to a fantasy script on Ho-jin’s desk, and Ho-jin answers that he liked it. Eun-gab stresses that it wasn’t easy to nab, but actress Lee El isn’t interested because she only listens to her mom. Ah, is Lee El Ho-jin’s second client?! Ho-jin says he’ll try and convince her otherwise in their first meeting today, and Eun-gab wishes him luck since he’ll have to win her trust and orders him not to buckle from her beauty.
Ho-jin meets with Lee El on set and quickly turns around when she changes into another outfit in front of him. When she’s decent, they discuss the script. He says the supporting role that she’s up for is stronger than the main, but that’s precisely why she’s not interested—she feels burdened. But Ho-jin tells her that her previous roles playing fierce characters were always unforgettable and that she should trust him and the agency now that they’re a team. She quips that for someone who’s visibly nervous, Ho-jin still says what he needs to say and agrees to reconsider the script.
Young-bin shops for a new desk for Ho-jin’s very first office. Turtle points out how kind he is to his manager so Joon would catch his drift, but Joon’s got his mind on his Im Hwa-su audition. Young-bin calls Ho-jin over, but because of work, he says he can’t come, and Joon notes that they’re getting the short end of the stick now that Ho-jin has an actress to manage.
The next morning, Ho-jin finds Director Yang sleeping half-naked in the living room. Turtle says they had to take him home after he had one too many drinks with Joon, and Joon giddily informs them that Director Yang drunkenly said he liked him and that the supporting role in Im Hwa-su was his. But Young-bin wonders if he’ll remember what he said.
Director Yang stumbles into the kitchen and glugs milk straight from the carton and instructs the boys (except Ho-jin, heh) to follow him to a place that is beneficial for the script. Even though his resentment of Director Yang hasn’t changed, Ho-jin tells Young-bin that he won’t be able to join them since he has to meet with Lee El, and Young-bin chides him for neglecting him these days.
Director Yang takes Turtle, Joon, and Young-bin to a sketchy office where former gang members run a business. He recommends they come here often to prep for their roles. Joon asks him what sort of business they run, but we don’t hear the answer. Cut to Joon and Turtle sitting frozen in their seats. They try to leave, but fail to do so because they’re too frightened.
Meanwhile, Young-bin and Director Yang grab lunch outside. The latest version of the script has been sent to Young-bin, and the director says he added a new female character. This gives Young-bin pause, but the director goes on to say that he’d like Young-bin to bulk up for this role so he looks more gangster and less dashing, which Young-bin is happy to do. They both agree that the movie will require a realistic feel and lifelike performance.
Director Yang plans to make a perfect reproduction of the era and shoot an epic climax scene, which all sounds great to Young-bin, except that it sounds expensive for the budget. Director Yang assures him that he’ll talk to the production company so their vision can be brought to life.
Cut to Eun-gab on the receiving end of CEO Ahn’s furious outburst over the phone. Apparently, Director Yang had demanded blockbuster-level money from CEO Ahn so he can build a complex set without CGI. Eun-gab knew this guy would be trouble, and wonders if they should hire a new director. Meanwhile, Joey’s glum because she’s tired of administrative work and wonders when she’ll get to be a manager.
Now that Ho-jin works in an office, Ji-ahn’s glad he has time to step away for quick dates. She asks if Lee El is pretty, and Ho-jin answers that she’s alright, amused by this new side of her. She wonders if Ho-jin feels left out because he has another talent to manage, but he says Young-bin and Director Yang are close now and denies feeling bothered by their friendship.
He answers a call from Eun-gab and updates Young-bin. He knows Young-bin wants to stick with Director Yang, but Eun-gab and CEO Ahn can’t stand him. Young-bin defends the director’s rude actions by attributing them to his passion, but Ho-jin disagrees and wishes they could find finalize finances ASAP.
While Young-bin’s speaking with Ho-jin, Turtle and Joon have joined Director Yang at the restaurant. Director Yang digs the hat Joon actually bought for himself, and Joon carefully asks if he still has the supporting role in Im Hwa-su. Director Yang doesn’t recall giving Joon that part even though Turtle recalls him doing just that. The director says Joon’s weak look isn’t right for the role—he lacks charisma, too.
Joon decides that he’ll go method to show Director Yang how manly and gangster he can be. But his idea of method acting is getting a tattoo, which Turtle finds ridiculous, but there they are at the tattoo salon, with Joon looking apprehensive.
Cut to Joon at home with the name of the supporting role, Lee Choon-bong, tattooed on the back of his shoulder. He feels tougher already, but Turtle worries that he won’t land the part. Ho-jin fumes and informs Young-bin that he read the revised script and that Director Yang made the new female character the lead.
Eun-gab knew the lunatic would pull something like this and orders Ho-jin and Young-bin to meet with Director Yang immediately and get him to revert the changes. He then receives a call from Oh Chang-seok who bears great news—he’ll be signing with Eun-gab. He asks Eun-gab to have Joey deliver his contract since he’d like to befriend his soon-to-be manager.
Eun-gab is hesitant, but instructs Joey to meet with Chang-seok to sign him. He warns her that he’s a playboy, but Joey’s not worried and beams that she gets to start acting like a real manager.
The boys anxiously wait for Director Yang to arrive at their house. Young-bin plans to be straightforward and say they prefer the original script, but when Director Yang finally arrives, he’s defensive and unyielding. He doesn’t let Ho-jin speak, and when Young-bin mentions that the female character overshadows the titular role, Director Yang says they’re not making a documentary and that the changes make the story more cinematic.
Ho-jin steps in and asserts that a movie called Im Hwa-su shouldn’t focus on some random female character, but Director Yang counters that a manager like him knows nothing. But Ho-jin doesn’t back down and deems the original script superior. Director Yang gets up in a huff, and Young-bin says he’ll try to smooth things over.
But later, as Ho-jin’s getting ready to leave for work, Young-bin informs him that after speaking with Director Yang, they decided to stick with the new script. He asks Ho-jin to reconsider and trust the director, but Ho-jin points out that Young-bin’s the one not seeing clearly. Young-bin still thinks Ho-jin’s being judgmental because he doesn’t like the director, and Ho-jin knows Young-bin’s going to do as he pleases no matter what so he leaves to work with Lee El, saying she actually listens to him.
Joon proudly shows off his tattoo to Director Yang to convey his commitment, but the director notices the variety scripts in Joon’s room and says that method actors shouldn’t do variety if they want to be taken seriously.
Joey meets Chang-seok at a bar, contract in hand. She rebuffs his repeated requests to drink since she’s working and politely disagrees when he says women must always defer to men. But he finds her resistance cute and says he won’t sign the contract unless she drinks so she reluctantly downs a shot.
Eun-gab’s on his way home when he calls Joey for an update. Joey tells him that Chang-seok keeps pressuring her to drink and won’t let her go home; she couldn’t refuse the new client and slurs that she’ll handle everything. But Eun-gab feels uneasy and turns his car around.
He arrives at the bar and spots Chang-seok with his arm around Joey and petting her hair. Eun-gab joins them and tries to be civil, suggesting they share a drink and let Joey leave, but Chang-seok’s not keen on that. Eun-gab removes Chang-seok’s hand from Joey’s shoulder, effectively ticking Chang-seok off.
He tries to grab the contract, but Eun-gab beats him to it and shreds it in front of him, declaring that he doesn’t want to sign scumbags like him. As he leaves with Joey, she apologizes for what happened, while Eun-gab assures her there are more good-natured actors out there and that he’ll let her manage one soon.
Eun-gab returns a missed call from CEO Ahn who tells him that he’s about to meet with a big investor momentarily. But that investor turns out to be CEO Jo, who invites him to her office. She says her company used to be the main investor of the movie until they had to drop out, but the interest in Im Hwa-su always remained. She’s impressed that CEO Ahn hired Director Yang and hopes this is her chance to finally work with him, but her smile betrays discomfort when she learns that Young-bin will be playing the lead.
Turtle and Joon drink at another table while Young-bin meets with Director Yang and a rookie actress he has in mind to play the female lead. Director Yang hits on her hard while Young-bin sits awkwardly. She compliments Young-bin on his looks, but Director Yang quips that he’s merely average.
Young-bin takes the jab in stride and when asked what his thoughts are on having her as his costar, he admits he’s uncertain and that the director’s preference counts more. Then the conversation turns to Young-bin’s relationship status, and Director Yang derides him for being a ladies man notorious for dating his costars and So-hee. Young-bin tenses and Director Yang reminds him that he doesn’t tolerate actors dating behind the scenes and expects them to only focus on their acting.
Meanwhile, Ho-jin’s still at the office. Eun-gab calls him for an update, and he tells him that Young-bin will take care of the Im Hwa-su issue. Ho-jin’s been waiting three hours for Lee El to meet him at his office, but hasn’t heard from her yet. Eun-gab laments that she’s never on time and reminds him to get an answer from her regarding the fantasy script.
Ho-jin finally calls El for an update, and she says she can’t make their meeting today and that she’s not interested in the fantasy script—her mom thought it was boring. She tells him to look for a a melo or rom-com instead, to Ho-jin’s disappointment.
Young-bin’s joined Joon and Turtle at their table while Director Yang continues to flirt with the actress behind them. Joon’s bitter that he didn’t get the role even with the tattoo and is considering giving up variety after what the director said. Ho-jin arrives looking glum because no one, not even El, listens to him.
Young-bin informs Ho-jin that Director Yang wants to give the lead role to the rookie actress he’s talking to, and Ho-jin thinks that’s nonsense; he’ll give the director a talk, although he can’t promise that a fight won’t arise. After the actress leaves, he and Young-bin approach Director Yang, who bristles at Ho-jin’s presence again.
Ho-jin starts off by saying they need to discuss the script, but the director shouts that his opinion doesn’t matter. Ho-jin says he’s fully aware that the director doesn’t like him, but that the changes he made to the script will change the entire direction of the movie.
Director Yang surprises them when he says he’ll omit the female character—he can’t find an actress capable enough to play her and figures everything is copacetic mow. But Young-bin states that there’s one problem—he can’t work with the director if he continues being disrespectful to his manager. Young-bin, is that you?
Ho-jin’s surprised to hear this, and Director Yang says Young-bin should give the script another read because the movie has nothing to do with loyalty, but betrayal and ambition. Yet the director agrees not to disrespect him anymore, and Young-bin’s relieved they’ll be sticking to the original script.
Eun-gab’s late in picking his wife up for dinner and answers a call from CEO Ahn, who informs him that he just met with CEO Jo. Uh-oh.
Back at the restaurant, Joon informs Director Yang that he won’t do variety anymore and asks to play Lee Choong-bong in Im Hwa-su, but the director still believes Joon’s unfit for the role; he’s going to send the script to Ma Dong-seok instead.
Turtle assures the director that Joon has anger management issues and a crazy side, but the director thinks Joon would make a great punching bag and and fit the unnamed role of Actor #2. Director Yang flings his hat—the one Joon bought—to the ground, and Joon’s anger escalates. Joon says he went through a lot to get the hat and tattoo, but the director flings it to the floor again. Joon snaps that Director Yang is a flip-flopper who went against his word and demands to know what’s so wrong with variety shows.
Director Yang chuckles at Joon’s manic face and offers him the supporting role. Turtle records this offer and Joon’s fumbling acceptance on video because it seems too good to be true.
Eun-gab meets with Young-bin and Ho-jin outside and breaks some news. He tells them CEO Ahn has secured an investor, which is a relief to Young-bin and Ho-jin, but then explains that the investor is CEO Jo, and their faces fall. Eun-gab says this happened because Director Yang demanded an increased budget, necessitating a large-scale investor. Eun-gab says she agreed to fund the whole project as long as Young-bin’s no longer a part of it, and the boys are knocked speechless.
I was wondering when Young-bin’s poor decisions would come to haunt him (if ever), and I guess now is the time, at long last. Finally, there are consequences to his misguided actions, and it’s looking as though even Eun-gab and Ho-jin will have a difficult time figuring out how to get their talent out of this pickle. I don’t have a case of schadenfreude, but I don’t feel too bad about this setback either since Young-bin’s managed to so far get away with nearly everything scot-free, and it was really getting on my nerves. His lucky streak has finally found an end.
Young-bin continues to be a frustrating character because he’s not exactly a straight meanie, but he’ll do things that are incredibly selfish, and then later, he’ll remind us how much he cares for his bros. And then, he’ll come back with something stupid (like side with Director Yang instead of Ho-jin even though he’s not cool with playing second fiddle to a female lead), and follow up with an unexpectedly kind gesture (like defend Ho-jin in front of Director Yang) that redeems him for a moment, but not for all those prior instances of diva behavior. I can’t keep up with all these fluctuations, but I will give him a few points for sticking up for Ho-jin and treating Ho-jin’s deserved respect as a dealbreaker. That literally came out of nowhere, and I was shocked.
I appreciated the realistic albeit unpleasant glimpses of the ugly side of the industry with the introduction of Oh Chang-seok playing against type for once. Considering how entertainment is such a male-dominated industry, with sexist and misogynistic behavior often going unpunished, Chang-seok knew full well that he could guilt-trip Joey into surrendering to his demands for the sake of the contract. He was a chauvinist pig, and a reminder that public and private personas are often different. Other instances of realistic industry moments included Lee El’s lack of consideration for Ho-jin and Ho-jin’s time, along with Joey’s frustrations at being a gofer and doing menial scheduling and email work.
I can only shake my head at Joon’s nonsensical decisions. Who gets a tattoo of a role that isn’t even in the bag yet? The tattoo was worth it in the end, but I have to give credit to Turtle, who planted the seed by mentioning Joon’s capacity for insanity, which motivated him to rile Joon up and grant him the role after witnessing Joon lose his calm. Turtle may seem like a useless joke-cracking moocher, but he’s no dummy and knows Joon best. He’ll be the first to poke fun at Joon, but he’ll also be the first to support him.
I have a feeling there’s more to the Im Hwa-su debacle than CEO Jo wanting payback for Young-bin’s untimely War Terminator exit. I wouldn’t be surprised if CEO Kang is also somehow involved, but now that Young-bin’s dream role is at stake, I want to see him do everything in his power to take it back, even if it means losing his pride along the way. I hope this conflict turns a switch in him from complacent to hungry because if he truly wants something, he should go and get it himself, instead of leaving it up to others.