Shooting Stars – K-Drama Episode 11 Recap & Review

“Warning! Do Not Fall For Good Looks”

Episode 11 of Shooting Stars starts as PR Head Oh Han-byeol talks to Choi Ji-hoon about the recent dating rumor about Gong Tae-sung. Just as the two talk, Tae-sung’s mother, actress Si-woo, enters Ji-hoon’s cabin. Han-byeol learns for the first time that Ji-hoon and Si-woo have been close to each other and keep bantering with each other. 

Since the rumor spread by Tae-sung’s hater – smileboy included a photo of Si-woo hugging Tae-sung, the PR team is trying to handle the scandal without revealing that Si-woo is in fact Tae-sung’s mother. 

Han-byeol suggests that they should neither confirm nor deny the rumor and just release a statement about how the rumor is false and that the veteran actress hugged Tae-sung out of her free will.

Once Han-byeol leaves, Ji-hoon asks Si-woo the real reason for her return to Tae-sung’s life. The actress states that she had something that she wanted to tell her son. 

Back in the coffee room, Han-byeol meets Manager Kang Yu-sung who tells her about the investigation against the stalker and house help, Myung-hee. Han-byeol asks Yu-sung about Si-woo and Ji-hoon’s relationship and he mentions that Ji-hoon was once Is-woo’s manager which is why they fought very casually. 

On his drive to shoot, an unwell Tae-sung is sad that his rumors keep adding on more work for Han-byeol. Meanwhile, at Reporter Cho Ki-ppeum’s office, her boss gives her an “exclusive” tip about the wedding of a famous actress. The boss insists that since the tip came from his mother, Ki-ppeum did not need to fact check and demands that she publish a story immediately.

At the same time, actress Baek Da-hye is reading the responses to her anonymous post about the sudden change in Tae-sung’s behavior on a forum. The members of the forum reveal that it is possible that the person in this context could be in love with someone and was trying out new food items to impress them. 

As the crew sits together to have lunch, access Jin Yu-na’s managers Han Dae-soo and  Ming-kyu join the table at which Tae-sung and the rest of the cast were having their meals. Dae-soo mentions that the soup seemed salty but Ming-kyu denies it.

Tae-sung, who hears the conversation between them, puts the soup away from his plate leading Ming-kyu to snicker. Da-hye, who knows that Tae-sung loves the soup asks him why he was not eating it but since he is irked by the controversy and the stalking, he leaves the table without finishing his meal. 

Determined to keep their real-life romance a secret, actors Jae-hyun, and Yu-na go to a secluded restaurant to have a meal together. A spoilt brat, Yu-na is not happy about the ambience of the restaurant but Jae-hyun reassures her that no one will recognize them there.

As soon as the waitress arrives with their food, she asks for their autographs and reveals that many popular celebrity couples often eat there. Jae-hyun is embarrassed while Yu-na worries their relationship will be made public.

In his green room, a gloomy Tae-sung is greeted by Ji-hoon who brings a huge bag of candy to cheer him up. Some time later, Manager Yu-sung barges into the room with a huge bag of snacks, again to cheer him up. Now as Tae-sung is in a much better mood, Han-byeol enters the room with some tteokbeoki and the two make out and chat for a while.

For the first time since confessing her feelings for Manager Yu-sung, Park Ho-young meets him in the parking lot of their company. After an awkward greeting Ho-young goes back to her car instead and clumsily drives out of the parking lot.

Ki-ppeum is greeted with a lawsuit. She immediately remembers Lawyer Do Soo-hyuk and enquires about the 50% discount he had offered her last time. She visits Lawyer Do, stating that she does not need the discount because as it turns out, he is related to the actual groom of the actress she wrote about. The groom is Lawyer Do’s brother who agrees to cancel the lawsuit and has Ki-ppeum write a new article praising the Lawyer Do’s brother.

All thanks to Lawyer Do, Reporter Ki-ppeum gets another exclusive article and treats her girlfriend gang, Oh Han-byeol to beer. Ki-ppeum tells Han-byeol that, unlike his usually rushed self, Lawyer Do waited for her to finish writing her article at his office even after work hours. Han-byeol is shocked to hear that Lawyer Do had waited for Ki-ppeum after 6 pm, which he only did when he started liking Han-byeol. 

Just at that moment, a dismayed Ho-young joins the two and reveals how she blurted out her feelings for Manager Yu-sung the night before. Ho-young contemplates leaving her job but her friends try to comfort her.

The next day, Han-byeol meets the house help, Myung-hee, and warns her about recent posts on Instagram that reveal Tae-sung’s house. Han-byeol returns the necklaces she had sent to her team back to Myung-hee. The stalker aka house-help tries to get to Han-byeol’s head by claiming that she is not any special to Tae-sung as she is. 

Myung-hee warns Han-byeol that she and Tae-sung were only temporary and would eventually break up anyway. Han-byeol takes a leave but Tae-sung texts her asking to meet up by the beach. 

Noticing that Han-byeol is not in her best mood, Tae-sung tries to cheer her up with a beachside tent set up with fairy lights and food. After prying her about her mood, Han-byeol tells Tae-sung about his conversation with Myung-hee. 

Tae-sung reveals that he has been in love with Han-byeol for years ever since they met for the first time. He reassures her by saying that Han-byeol has been his first love for yours and will be the last woman he loves. 

The next morning, Tae-sung is in a happy mood but receives an anonymous text revealing his anti-fan club – ‘Tae-sung gets worse’. The message also includes an identity card of a Starforce Entertainment employee which was attached to the most recent dating rumor.

The text states that someone who hates Tae-sung is very close to him, an employee of his agency asking him to be careful causing Tae-sung to worry. Back at the Starforce Entertainment headquarters Manager Yu-sung recalls Ho-young’s confession and spots her walking clumsily out of the room.

Yu-sung invites Ho-young for a chat and asks her to wait for him to understand his feelings for her. He promises to respond to her when he finally learns how he feels about her. The two resolve the ongoing tension leaving Yu-sung wondering how cute she is. 

Tae-sung visits the Starforce headquarters and is worried as soon as he sees the same identity card on all staff employees as well as artists from the company. Tae-sung talks to Manager Yu-sung about the anonymous text he received who is just as worried as Tae-sung.

On his way back home, Tae-sung is met with his neighbor and frenemy, Lawyer Do Soo-hyuk. Tae-sung invites himself over to Soo-hyuk’s house and awkwardly tries to investigate if he is the employee that was running an anti-fan page against Tae-sung. Lawyer Do jokes that Tae-sung put himself in danger by drinking a latte made by him, in his house. 

Lawyer Do tries to ease Tae-sung’s fear by stating that it was very easy to make a fake id and states that he should not worry much about the anonymous tip. The next day, Manager Yu-sung and Han-byeol chat about the message and wonder who the employee was that was an anti-fan of Tae-sung.

Manager Yu-sung remembers how former Starforce employee, Ming-kyu had rammed his car into a bus stop with Tae-sung’s photo on it because he “smiled” a lot in the photo. At the time, Ming-kyu was dismissed from that job and had started working at DS Actors as actress Yu-na’s manager.

Manager Yu-sung rushes to DS Actors’ headquarters where Ming-kyu is resending an email about the dating rumor, revealing the identity of the woman hugging Tae-sung. Meanwhile, Manager Byeong Jung-yeol asks Tae-sung to come out of his building as he was running late on the way to pick Tae-sung up.

On his way down, Tae-sung receives another anonymous text from the same sender revealing a photo of Manager Yu-sung with his mother, actress, Eun Si-woo, and feels betrayed by his old friend. 

Manager Yu-sung tries to call Tae-sung but the latter ignores it in a state of shock. Meanwhile, Yu-sung reaches the DS Actors’ office and finds Ming-kyu looking at his former company id card. Yu-sung grabs Ming-kyu by the shoulder and asks him to quit the act revealing his anti-fan id – smileboy.  

Shocked by the text, Tae-sung exits his building to be mobbed by reporters flashing cameras and shoving mics in his face asking him about his rumored affair with an older actress. As he is being shoved around by reporters, Tae-sung recalls a time when he was younger and had accompanied his mother to a movie premiere and is stressed out to the point where he collapses to the ground just as Jung-yeol drives by. A semi-conscious Tae-sung tries to look around him, only to spot Han-byeol running towards him.

The epilogue of the episode moves back in time to the year 2016 when Manager Yu-sung was driving Tae-sung around after his mother, Si-woo had shown up and triggered him. Yu-sung offered to have a drink with Tae-sung. 

As the two sit by the river, a group of drunk men try to startle the actor. Manager Yu-sung defends Tae-sung and gets beaten up in his stead, trying to protect the image of the actor who recently had a successful movie release. 

Tae-sung visits Yu-sung at the hospice the next day and asks why he did not hit the drunk men back. Yu-sung states that he did so because he wanted to keep negative press away from the actor. 

When Han-byeol visits the manager next, she asks him why he was beaming when he had been attacked. Yu-sung reveals that he was happy because Tae-sung had called him “hyung” – older brother in Korean – for the first time.

The Episode Review

This episode, just like many other K-drama episode 11’s seems to be like a good filler episode where things are finally taking shape towards a happy ending and nothing very serious is revealed. 

On one hand, we have Tae-sung and Han-byeol finally going strong in their relationship. With Han-byeol’s natural insecurities being revealed, as she dates one of the biggest stars of the country, Tae-sung’s heartfelt confession is really all that she needs to feel reassured in her relationship. 

Reporter Ki-ppeum is finally getting the man she deserves too, and it is fun to see Lawyer Do get over his crush on Han-byeol and move on with his practical female counterpart Ki-ppeum. It is also very refreshing to see how he always has a pattern with the women he likes as she only gets off work late for the women he is infatuated with.

The side actors got a lot less screen time in this episode but actors Jae-hyun and Yu-na are a sight to sore eyes. The couple is always caught in the most awkward situation that keeps their relationship interesting.

Manager Yu-sung and Ho-young with Actor Yu-sung is one love triangle that is a win-lose situation. While it is cute to see Ho-young confess her love to Manager Yu-sung while Manager Yu-sung himself seems to be liking Ho-young. But Actor Yu-sung’s one-sided crush being rejected is going to break the hearts of many K-drama fans.

It is appalling to see how actors have no control over the actions of their stalkers and anti-fans as Myung-hee and Ming-kyu show no remorse for trying to ruin Tae-sung’s life.

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