Mystic Pop-Up Bar returns this week with another fun and dramatic episode as we carry on following the adventures of Weol-Ju and Kang-Bae. With a new person to help, the show seems to follow the same path each week as these individual chapters tackle a different grudge, which are interesting and emotional too.
Episode 3 of Mystic Pop-Up Bar starts in the past with Weol-Ju collecting magical water from a well in the afterlife. Junior Manager Yeom speaks to her about her plan to open a bar in the living realm. He asks if she will be able to settle the grudges of 100,000 since she killed herself because of her hatred for humans. She explains that when the living take those drinks, their souls linger in the dream world between the afterlife and the living realm. She vows to do anything to get it done, even by scamming them or using another human.
In the present, Kang-Bae speaks to Guibanjang about the things he will do once he is normal. Weol-Ju then reminds him of his task at hand and to get working at finding people to help. In the supermarket, he touches multiple clients to find one but doesn’t have much luck. Weol-Ju berates him for it and sits him down to explain what a real grudge is; it is a journey that one must take alone, it is not to be confused with greed and the person must be desperate.
Meanwhile, a young man called Park Byeong-Jae desperately tries to get into a company’s building. He then runs to speak to chairman Choi and pleads with him to reveal why he wasn’t been accepted after applying for a job.
Later in the day, Weol-Ju and Guibanjang are out shopping and come face to face with Mi-Ran. Weol-Ju loses her temper again when Mi-Ran confuses them for husband and wife. After Mi-Ran mentions that companies today are announcing their new recruits, it gives Weol-Ju an idea to find the ones that have been rejected by those same companies.
After the mystic bar sets up shop by Noryangjin station, a depressed Byeong-Jae comes in for some drinks. Sitting in front of a plate of fried octopus he starts crying. Kang-Bae then touches him to make him spill his worries; Byeong-Jae has been struggling with his part time job and studying to find a better job. As a result, he doesn’t make enough to afford rent or take his girlfriend Yu-Mi out which makes him feel bad for her.
He explains that he has applied to work in Sangil Hotel as he has studied hotel management but unfortunately didn’t get it despite acing the written exam and interview. While having dinner with Yu-Mi, he breaks up with her as he feels useless that he is unable to provide for her, especially now that he didn’t get the job. As he returns home, he finds out that Yu-Mi has paid his rent for him which makes him feel even worse.
As she is about to give him the magical drink, Weol-Ju asks him what he wants exactly. He replies that he just want to know why he didn’t get the job so he can try again. In the dream world, Kang-Bae attends the interview alongside Byeong-Jae and another young man called Byun Sang-Ho. Byeong answers all the answers with confidence and perfectly while Byun’s answers are mediocre. However, the interviewers are strangely impressed by Byun. The trio reconvene afterwards and learn that people usually get hired at the company through connections.
As they watch Byeong-Jae beg the chairman for an explanation, Weol-Ju remembers the day she visited the lord of her village after her mother’s murder and pleads with him to find the culprit. However, he slaps her and blames her ancestors as her mother came from a vile family. He then laughs and sends her away.
Back in the living world, Byeong wakes up and learns that the other young guy at the interview got the job. This surprises him but learns that he is the son of an assembly man. After Byeong leaves, Weol-Ju decides to deal with chairman Choi herself.
Meanwhile, Chairman Choi’s bodyguard Kang Yeo-Rin decides to speak to her boss as she doesn’t want to guard Choi anymore because of the way he treats the applicants. Her boss shrugs though, telling her it’s her job and what she gets paid for.
Weol-Jo decides to pay the chairman a visit and brings him some of her magical drink. After he drinks it, we cut to Guibanjang who has magically turned himself into Choi and is accompanied by Kang-Bae pretending to be his bodyguard. They head into Choi’s office while Weol-Ju enters his dream world. Within that, Choi runs into his office and finds it ransacked. Just as he looks for a flash drive hidden in a book, the room starts to shake which makes Weol-Ju realize that someone is trying to wake him up in the living world. Returning there, she sees Yeo-Rin trying to wake him. After fighting her off, she calls Guibanjang and tells him to look for a flash drive in one of his books and to hurry.
While Guibanjang and Kang-Bae desperately try finding the drive, the now-awake chairman and Yeo-Rin make their way to the office. When they reach it, the chairman sends his bodyguards to stop Kang-Bae and Guibanjang. The latter manages to skillfully get rid of them before running off while Yeo-Rin stays behind to deal with Kang-Bae. Surprisingly though, Yeo-Rin doesn’t react or spill her secrets when Kang-Bae touches her but grounds him to the floor instead and takes the drive.
Kang-Bae pleads with her to give it back as it is proof that Choi has been hiring people thanks to connections only. She tells him her job is to protect her client so he asks her if it is her job to let the chairman ruin thousands of people’s lives. This is enough to convince her and she gives him back the drive and her key card to escape.
Later that day, the chairman meets with executives from the hotel to discuss the news claiming that he hires people through his connections. One of the executives spins the story, claiming that the rejected lied because he was bitter. Unbeknownst to them, they are being filmed as we see that the waitress serving them is actually Guibanjang with a glamour. After the video gets leaked, they all get arrested as well as everyone else involved in the scam.
In his flat, Byeong-Jae receives a call from the Sangil hotel apologizing about his unfair treatment and offering him a job. We then cut to our trio watching him and his girlfriend reunited and eating fried octopus just like Byeong-Jae wished for. This makes Kang-Bae envious as he wishes he could just connect with someone without having to talk. Still, he knows they only need to help 7 more people.
Back in the bar, Kang-Bae finds Yeo-Rin’s badge and wonders if he should go back to give it to her but Weol-Ju strongly advises him not to. Kang-Bae then reveals that when she touched him, she didn’t feel anything. Yeo-Rin drowns her sorrows while having drinks with her friend as she has been fired after letting Kang-Jae go. She tells her friend she doesn’t know what she is going to do without a job as she can’t be a bodyguard anymore.
The episode ends with Kang-Bae having to deal with an aggressive customer who is about to hit him. Suddenly, he comes face to face with Yeo-Rin who is now working there as a security guard.
Mystic Pop-Up Bar seems to have the right formula so far as each episode presents us with a new plot with a different person in need of help, which gets resolved at the end. At the same time, we follow Weol-Ju and Kang-Bae’s story too as they each have some issues to resolve. Alongside Guibanjang, all three have some great chemistry on screen and there are some genuinely funny moments too.
As we find out that Yeo-Rin is immune to Kang-Bae’s touch, it will be interesting to see what will happen between the two and while there will be hostility at first, this could perhaps turn into something more for them. Mystic Pop-up Bar has definitely been a fun and intriguing drama so far and one I am already looking forward to watch each week!
Published: 28 May 2020 at 5:25pm on