The Plot Thickens…
Graceful Friends returns for a slightly slower episode this time around but one that’s no less dramatic. With lots of secrets being held between the different couples and plenty of questions about the past, this Korean drama continues to weave an intricate web of familial drama.
Episode 8 of Graceful Friends begins with Goong-Cheol struggling to get through to Jung-Hae following their argument the previous evening. When he awakens in the morning, he finds Jung-Hae has already left ahead of him. She happens to be visiting her deceased Mother, paying her respects on the day of her death. She mentions how Hae-Sook is back in their life and doesn’t know how to deal with it.
As she steps outside, “The Chairman” stands waiting for her. He reveals that he’s had people follow her and given he let her borrow $500,000, he has a vested interest in what she does. That was 20 years ago though and from there onwards, she vowed never to ask him for another favour.
When Jung-Hae does eventually answer the phone to Goong-Cheol, she tells him she’s at work. Only, when we cut to the hospital Goong-Cheol happens to be there looking at the office door. Sensing the worst, he leaves and heads to see the detective.
Mr Ahn confirms that the funeral pictures and the video were both sent from the same burner phone. The detective then goes on to discuss Dahan Nursing Home and how Jung-Hae erased footage from her dash-cam too. Given what’s happened in the past, Goong-Cheol begins to suspect the worst.
In the past, we see more of Jung-Hae’s traumatic childhood as she arrived home after school. There, she found her Mother in a bath with slit wrists.
Meanwhile, Choon-Bok forgets how to tie his tie and needs Eun-Sil to help him. Could this be the early onset of Alzheimer’s? Before we find out, Ji-Wook heads home and immediately finds himself berated by Kyung-Ja. However, Kyung-Woo has a much lighter touch and takes him out to a playground where they discuss Mi-Ra.
Still reeling over what Kyung-Woo told her the previous night, Kyung-Ja gets on the phone and rings someone. As we find out later in the episode, that “someone” is actually the movie producer we saw in the previous episode. In order to get a contract from him, it’s implied that she exchanges sexual favours. Only, Jae-Hoon happens to be there and sees her leave with him.
To rewind slightly, this occurs on the back of a woman named Sophia Choi arriving at Jae-Hoon’s clinic talking about her husband. Only, this happens to be Choi Mo-Ran in another life and also his ex-wife.
Goong-Cheol heads up to the nursing home and speaks to Do-Hae about Man-Sik. As they get talking, he learns more about Ku Young-Sun and how that ties into the relationship with Man-Sik. More damning than all of that, he also asks whether Jung-Hae knew about this.
Kyung-Ja messages Jung-Hae and tells her they should head to the bar and destroy “first love”. Eun-Sil also receives that message too and they purposefully start walking toward the bar.
All the guys happen to be at there already though and they start to celebrate. Midway through the celebrations, the girls arrive and immediately march up to their table. As they join their husbands, things quickly become awkward as Hae-Sook throws shade at the boys and everyone starts drinking.
Jung-Hae winds up getting blind drunk while Hae-Sook sits up on stage and starts singing. This brings back painful memories of the past for her though as Jung-Hae noticed Goong-Cheol looking at her affectionately on the beach.
Staggering up the stage, Jung-Hae tells Hae-Sook she’s going to sing a song. Tellingly, when she falls over both Jae-Hoon and Goong-Cheol hurry up to help her. This causes quite the scene as Goong-Cheol booms at his friend to let go. Eventually he bundles her in a taxi as she leaves with Kyung-Ja.
The girls head up to a karaoke bar and start singing, leading to Jung-Hae losing her composure and crying. Eventually she admits to her friends that she misses her Mother. As Goong-Cheol finds out the significance of the day from Jae-Hoon, memories of the past come flooding back. He clearly distrusts Jung-Hae after the secrets she’s been holding from him.
When he returns home though, he notices a package waiting for him. That package happens to hold a wedding invitation for Goong-Cheol and Jung-Hae’s wedding. As we cut across and see a hidden figure, whoever is doing this clearly has a vendetta against Goong-Cheol. Who could it be?
With a slower episode this time around, Graceful Friends more than makes up for that with some intriguing foundations set for the second half of this drama. It seems Goong-Cheol may well know more about Jae-Hoon and Jung-Hae than he’s letting on. After the incident in the bar, I’d imagine he probably has his suspicions about his wife.
The big question here though comes from just who has a vendetta against Goong-Cheol and who’s sending him these pictures. Could it be Jae-Hoon? We’ve already seen that he’s pretty capable of dark deeds but it remains to be seen how dark this man actually is.
So far though, this drama has done well to keep things interesting and quite what next week has in store for us, remains to be seen.
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