There’s trouble in paradise this week on Graceful Friends and much like the previous episode, the “perfect” marriage between Jung-Hae and Goong-Cheol is really put to the test. Most of the drama revolves around this duo trying to overcome their issues and work together. Unfortunately in doing so, this threatens to consume all of their friends and family too. As we soon find out, what’s happening in the future is actually mirroring an incident that occured 20 years ago too. Alas, the mystery continues to deepen.
Episode 4 of Graceful friends begins with a startling revelation. “I killed him,” Goong-Cheol sighs during the opening scenes of the episode and now, we finally see who he killed. Kang-San was the one he choked out in the shower but he never actually meant to kill him. The reason for his actions directly link to the horrible things he’s been doing to his wife.
Back in the present, Goong-Cheol rings Jae-Hoon who spies Jung-Hae entering an elevator at the Sky Hotel. Sensing the worst, Goong-Cheol arrives too and starts checking every single room to find her. Unfortunately this gets him taken away by security.
Meanwhile, Kang-San has wine brought to the room but after pouring Jung-Hae a glass, she throws it in his face. Things get intense and it leads to him eventually revealing his true colours and telling her to hand over $500,000. Although Jung-Hae laughs at the absurdity of this, he promises to instead go to her Father. Even worse, he also vows to go after their son Yoo-Bin.
Defeated and broken, Jung-Hae returns home just as Goong-Cheol shows and shakily reveals the photos. It’s here she opens up and reveals everything to her husband, including Kang-San’s arrival at the bar and him spiking her. Although he wants to go to the police, Jung-Hae takes a much more hands-on approach and vows to deal with it herself.
While Kyung-Ja struggles to console Hyung-Woo over his ripped suit, she’s distracted by Eun-Sil arriving at the door. She hands over a new purse for her to borrow but when Choon-Bok realizes how much it is, he immediately tells his wife to remain friends with her.
Meanwhile, Kang-San gets involved in a card game but loses all of his money. He struggles to keep his temper in check and the winner tells him to “be good.” Unfortunately this rubs him up the wrong way and outside, he beats the man to a pulp and takes the money for himself.
While Ji-Wook is hooked up with a blind date by his friend, eventually rejecting the girl, Jung-Hae heads out alone to her golfing lesson. Goong-Cheol follows her though, desperate to find out what his wife is up to. Unfortunately a truck gets between them and he loses her en-route. She doesn’t go to a golfing lesson though and instead visits Do-Hae up at the nursing home. That old lady we saw from before is there too, and she’s been waiting for Man-Sik all this time.
Kyung-Ja and Hyung-Woo visit a pretty seedy producer who desperately wants to star in an erotic melodrama with Kyung-Ja. With her husband sitting and listening to this, she eventually hears enough and berates him for his sleazy behaviour. After pouring a drink on him, the couple leave together. Outside though Hyung-Woo bumps into Kang-San and the pair stare one another down.
In a supermarket, Eun-Sil and Chan-Bok bump into another couple. It’s a simple scene that’s used as comedy relief but the final scenes have undertones of melodrama as they play into the issues Chan-Bok has had all season so far regarding his age.
Goong-Cheol meets Jung-Hae but just before she shows, Kang-San appears on his bike and forces Goong-Cheol to react accordingly and beat him to a pulp. However, before he can go too far Jung-Hae stops him.
That evening, the boys get together and Chan-Bok talks to the others about his age woes with Eun-Sil. Sporting bruised knuckles, Goong-Cheol struggles to focus and keep his composure. When Kang-San messages and reveals that he’s with Jung-Hae, this catches us up to the incident that occurred at the start of the first episode. With murderous intent, Goong-Cheol charges up to his apartment while his friends hurry after him.
The next thing we know, Kang-San lies bloodied and motionless on the ground.
We then cut back 20 years to see a very similar scene to the one we just witnessed play out. In his rage, Goong-Cheol races up to Professor Han’s room and there, we see him lying on the ground in a pool of blood. Back in his room, Goong-Cheol asks Man-Sik for a pen as if nothing has happened.
There’s a lot going on in Graceful Friends and at the centre of all of this are Goong Cheol and Jung-Hae. With Goong-Cheol mentally unstable and apparently responsible for two murders, it remains to be seen what direction the show will go next. Of course, given how this series has played out thus far it could all be a red herring and there could be someone else involved in all this.
There’s some good work done with Chan-Bok this episode though and seeing the comedy peel away to form something much more poignant and real is a great touch. This episode also sees the relationship between Hyung-Woo and Kyung-Ja given some much-needed screen-time too. Both of these side characters have been used as comedic props thus far and it’s nice to finally see some solid character work for both couples.
Quite what will happen next though remains to be seen but one thing’s for sure – this conflict is far from over.
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