recaps and reviews, taiwan dramas
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Refresh Man Episode 17 (Finale) Recap

This is one of the better final endings I’ve seen for a Taiwanese drama, in that the resolution for the conflict is left for the final episode and everything else is tied up nicely.

Remember how last episode, Yu Tang asked for one last date? We start off this episode watching the couple on a date and I just love the vibe. As I’ve said before, looking at them makes me want to go on a date.

Wen Kai shoots all balloons and earns himself the top prize, but requests for the lowest-tier cuttlefish instead – because Yu Tang likes it. Hehe, she shyly accepts the prize. To be honest, I’m still wondering why she likes those cuttlefish. Are they even safe to eat?:O

Yu Tang comments later on that she was hard at work trying to get the model car for him and he was diligently getting the cuttlefish for her, yet they have never realised each other’s efforts. She reveals that she actually lucky-dipped his model car twice – the first one was actually 10 years ago, which she had thrown away after Wen Kai didn’t turn up at the amusement park.

Wen Kai laughs that she’s childish but comments that it seems like they have dated each other for a very long time. They cared for each other, got angry with each other, and always thought of each other no matter whether they were angry or sad.

Yu Tang realises that they only have one photograph together (the one from the phone store eons ago) so the two decide to take loads of selfies together.

Yu Tang tears up and looks away. Wen Kai notices and looks at her in concern. I like Aaron’s changes in facial expressions!

He can’t bear for her to leave but she insists that she’s okay.

Back at home, Yu Tang murmurs that it’s late and she – “Wait.”

Wen Kai brings her face closer for a kiss. Aaron is having a field day filming this drama I bet. He really enjoys his kisses.

Wen Kai whispers, “I don’t want you to go.” She replies that she will leave only after he falls asleep. He smiles, “You’re in for trouble,” because he has a long-ass story to tell her, a story even longer than the Hobbits.

The camera pans out and soon, it’s the next morning. Wen Kai wakes up and checks instinctively for Yu Tang (who’s already gone). He places the pot of roses (which miraculously transports itself from Yu Tang’s bedroom to his living room) in his kitchen. We see Yu Tang with a luggage, as she looks back and reminisces.

And oh boy, can I just say that although I’m not a big fan of flashbacks, these flashbacks do bring back so much memories. There’s so much progression between this couple that I forgot they even had the Jerk-Wen Kai and useless-Yu Tang or the various letslookateachothersleep scenes. On the other hand, sometimes I get thoroughly bored with flashbacks because they only serve to show that nothing much has happened between episode 2 and episode 15.

Yu Tang walks away and if you were confused like me, the scene of the plane flying past is supposed to signify that some sort of lengthy period has gone by. Yep. Not like a day (relevant later!).

Wen Kai gets criticised by people in the office, who got emboldened by the rumours that he has corruptly taken money for himself. Team 3 stands up for him and threatens to sue them each once Wen Kai’s cleared of his name.

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Wen Kai meets with a business partner who reminds him gently that the outcome of the contract depends on how his report to the directors turn out. Later, the other secretary dishes him a resignation letter, to which he smiles understandingly. I thought it was Yu Tang’s resignation letter at first because who cares about this secretary’s resignation?

Seriously though, have you ever seen a company empty itself so fast?

Wendy reports that ever since that day (where the couple was taking selfies), Yu Tang hasn’t appeared in front of Wen Kai. Zi Yu observes bitterly that he obviously isn’t on her choice list. Ai Sha reminds him of his promise to Yu Tang and he loses his cool, “What I promised only kicks in if she comes to Xin Wei!”

Ai Sha simply blinks at this outburst hahaha. Zi Yu holds his anger and says calmly that Wen Kai’s act is a criminal offence. Ai Sha (suddenly) agrees that of course, they should be strict with what is owed to them. Zi Yu is eager for the next day since that’s when Shen Director is back but Ai Sha informs him that Shen Director will only be back a day later than that.

I’m not entirely sure on the significance of this postponement though.

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First reason why it matters that a period of time has passed and not just a day – because Wen Kai notices that his flowers have bloomed! And I was a little bewildered thinking why are his roses on steroids.

Jerk Jia makes an appearance with security guards, making jibes that they need to watch him carefully because he’s prone to sneaking off with money. He uses words like “scram” etc. Seriously… and with all le huff and le puff of the chest.

Wen Kai knows that he has a back-up or he wouldn’t have dared to speak to him like that. Zi Yu appears and prophesies that the new leader of the beauty industry will change. I’m not sure why Wen Kai had to say that too – I thought it was plainly obvious and accepted that Jerk Jia is working for Zi Yu:O This guy jumped boats quicker than you can shout Jerk.

Zi Yu tells Wen Kai that he might have had a way out if not the fact that he took the three hundred million. Ai Sha arrives to inform Zi Yu that Shen Director and everyone else are in the conference room. I like the slight oomph in this scene, where Ai Sha is now working for the other party.

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Before Wen Kai leaves his room, he puts the boy figurine down firmly. This means to me that he’s back, he’s back in the fight.

Zi Yu makes a speech, clap clap clap. He smirks at a worried-looking Wen Kai. Shen Director cuts in, “Wen Kai, it’s been hard on you.”

Wen Kai smiles in a bittersweet way and asks after Shen Director’s wife’s health. Zi Yu impatiently cuts short this housekeeping matter and it’s now time to sign the contract.

Wen Kai checks his phone and looks at Shen Director. While Zi Yu eagerly signs his name, Shen Director holds off, obviously waiting for something – and that something arrives in the form of a knock on the door. Wen Kai nods his head, indicating to Shen Director that that’s what they’ve been waiting for.

The door opens and Mr Takoff walks in, accompanied by Yu Tang who is speaking in fluent Russian. Ai Sha greets Mr Takoff with warmth but Zi Yu is so thrown off.

Mr Takoff reveals that he’s here representing Tian Xi DD. Xin Wei and Tian Xi shall merge, but the control lies with Tian Xi DD. Poor Zi Yu, he can hardly process this, especially after Yu Tang reminds him that Tian Xi’s owner will not be Xin Wei but Tian Xi DD.

Zi Yu asks the question we’ve been thinking, what on earth is Tian Xi DD? And why can’t you come up with a better name? 

It’s time for Wen Kai to shine. He stands up and explains that Tian Xi DD is an investment company jointly incorporated by him and Mr Takoff in Singapore. Yu Tang adds on that when the fake Mei Meis infiltrated the market, causing both Xin Wei’s and Tian Xi’s shares to drop drastically, Tian Xi DD acquired huge amounts of Shares, “Now, Tian Xi DD is the largest shareholder of both Xin Wei and Tian Xi.”

Ooh now it makes sense why Wen Kai asked for three days’ leeway — he wanted the shares to fall even greater so that Mr Takoff can buy more shares with the same amount of money. Smart!

This means that although Tian Xi and Xin Wei will merge as planned, the control lies with Tian Xi DD who now has the power to control Xin Wei’s decisions. The three hundred million? Ai Sha cuts in and reveals that the funds were used by Wen Kai on behalf of Tian Xi to incorporate the company and Shen Director knows about this.

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Zi Yu is incredulous, “Why didn’t you tell me?” In one of my favourite lines this episode, Ai Sha replies with a smile in her eyes, “I’ve already said you don’t understand women. I’ve always been Kelvin’s secretary, that hasn’t changed at all.”

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Cut to Wen Kai’s look of love. Okay not love, but I just like how touched he looks.

In a flashback, we see that Wen Kai had visited Ai Sha after Zi Yu left her apartment. He praised her for being meticulous but she knew too that in order to put up a good show, Wen Kai would be under great stress. They just have to hang on until Mr Takoff’s arrival.

 How about Yu Tang? In another flashback, we see that after Wen Kai said that he had a long story, the doorbell rang. In comes Ai Sha, who’s here to deliver something. Wen Kai explained, “Didn’t you want to help me with my work?”

Before he could continue, Yu Tang asked if the envelope contained plane tickets to Russia. She had already prepared her visa and her passport; she’s ready. How did she know?

She guessed from the fact that Wen Kai had delayed the news for three days + the knowledge from  Jia Yin that Johnny’s company has collaborated with both Tian Xi and Russia + Ai Sha’s reminder for her to think of what she could do for Wen Kai + most importantly, the discovery of Shen Director’s signature on the transfer of three hundred million, showing that the fund transfer was legitimate.

Wen Kai smiles proudly and declares that she has graduated from being a rookie to a professional secretary. Okay…a bit forced here, but whatevs.

He asks the question that is burning in my head, “Since you know everything, why did you cry until like that?” Yu Tang explains that no matter what, she’s going to leave for a while, so she cried because she could not bear to. Wen Kai notes that in the end, it all works out – her tears that look so real will put up a good facade to the other people. In this period of supposed resignation and nursing a broken heart, she is actually in Russia with Mr Takoff.

Second reason why this absence isn’t one day – I was genuinely taken aback that she cried so much tears because she was going to leave for a day…

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Zi Yu finally realises that the whole thing was a show. Mr Takoff praises Yu Tang for her speedy improvement in Russian. In another flashback, we find out that all those times Yu Tang was listening to her headphones? She was actually listening to language tapes on Russian pronounciation. Okay, I approve of this little twist.

Shen Director comments that Wen Kai must have felt very stressed during this period of time.

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Wen Kai smiles (another bittersweet one), “It’s okay, it’s all for this moment.”

He tells Zi Yu that Xin Wei and Tian Xi have always been great partners and working together will bring both to greater heights. He hopes that Zi Yu will sign the contract, but Zi Yu sniggers. When he started laughing, I thought he had ANOTHER trick on top of Wen Kai’s trick.

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Thank goodness, it wasn’t. It is just Zi Yu waving his pen around and realising finally that all of them were working together. HEY I THINK JACK LI’S ACTING IS NOT BAD HERE.

Also, cue to Ai Sha’s look of I don’t care. Zi Yu sorely declares Wen Kai the winner but Wen Kai doesn’t like the win-lose language. Isn’t it better to create a win-win situation? Now, what’s with Yu Tang’s look of touch-ness?

After the eventful meeting, Jerk Jia walks out with the tail in between his legs but Wen Kai offers him a place back in Tian Xi. Just note that he will be working under Meng He instead.

No really, WHY WOULD YOU TAKE HIM BACK? He was such a jerk, forever taunting others, and he stepped on you the moment he had the chance to. It’s not just about taking revenge; it’s more like whether this employee is to be trusted by the company.

As this is the last episode, we must have the miraculous turn-abouts. Wen Kai puts out a hand and hopes that both parties will work well together in the future. Zi Yu admits that the joint venture agreement is very fair towards Xin Wei and he can see that the objective is for Tian Xi to bring Xin Wei to the international stage. He shakes Wen Kai’s hand, “In the future, I will let you see that I can withstand challenges.”

It’s okay, whatever indignation I felt was expressed by Team 3. Wen Kai explains that it’s better to have someone with Zi Yu’s capability as his ally rather than an enemy.

Meng He cute-ly asks for a rundown of what actually happened. Wen Kai explains that he always knew that Team 1 and 2 had close ties with Xin Wei. Xin Wei didn’t always want to swallow Tian Xi; it simply wanted to steal the employees to use for its own new line of beauty products.

It was Zi Yu who thought it would be good to have Tian Xi and created a string of problems. Wen Kai admits that he didn’t foresee the fake Mei Meis problem and the credit for solving it lies with Team 3. And yep, he intentionally asked for three days so that Mr Takoff can successfully set up the company.

Ai Sha puts out the black figurine and requests for deployment back to camp. Wen Kai strips the black tape, revealing a white figure. I’m kind of amused at the tape hahaha what.

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Wen Kai notes that it doesn’t matter whether she’s black or white; what matters is their trust in each other. Everytime I see scenes like this, I am reminded of the joke made by the cast that Ai Sha is the second wife.

Meng He requests for a celebratory meal. Wen Kai replies that he can’t be there……….. “because I have a date with someone else.” Hehehe.

He also declares a three-day holiday, causing them to put their hands up in celebration.

WHY ARE THEY ALWAYS DOING WEIRD ACTIONS HAHAHA.

Liang Yu takes the opportunity to ask Hui Xin out on a travel date. She’s like yeah sure, but you take one room and I will take another, much to Team 3’s amusement. I am more amused by Jia Yin/(I don’t know who)’s “Oh-oh” sound. Seriously, listen to it.

So for our couple, they have a date at the amusement park. Yu Tang waits for quite a while but turns around to see the lion mascot. The said lion walks forward with a bunch of balloons and a TAPE RECORDER tied to it. AHHH so sweet.

I’m so sorry for the abundance of caps here. I’m actually a very calm person yes.

Just as I’ve predicted here, Yu Tang’s flashbacks triggered by the recorder suggests that she thought the recorder was for Hai Di.

She finally listens to it in its entirety – *coughs* I am Ji Wen Kai. Someone said before that if you like someone, you should have courage to tell her…so, I want to tell you here, Zhong Yu Tang, I like you. She has finished the puzzle and she knows, “Ten years ago, you really came. Thank you for always looking out for me. Even now, you are protecting me and taking care of me.”

Lesson learnt: Don’t talk to a mascot, it can only smile back at you blindly. It will be funny if the mascot removes its head and it turns out that it wasn’t Wen Kai but a minion sent by him hehe.

The Lion steps forward in a youmaynowunveilthebride-esque fashion and Yu Tang does the honours….

OMG HAHA MY PREDICTION CAME THROUGH. Yu Tang screams, “What is this?” Hahahahaha. Anyway, he’s here because he’s dating Hai Di now and Wen Kai told him before that couples who came to this amusement park would not separate thereafter.

So where did our male lead go? He appears dashingly with a bouquet of roses and apologises for being late. A rose for each year, so that’s for the past ten years he wasn’t with her! Okay, other than comic relief though, I don’t really get why he has to get someone else to be in the lion mascot.

Yu Tang says that she has finished her homework, but she doesn’t need to ask any questions because she got it all after finishing the puzzle. Wen Kai praises her for being smart and leans down for a kiss, which is so sweet and hilarious because he’s  just ignoring the other two.

Sheng Ren clears his throat, and what’s even funnier is when Wen Kai looks up, “Why are you still here?”

The irrelevant couple escapes after Wen Kai threatens punches. Yu Tang is amazed that she has finally received the confession from ten years ago. After Wen Kai’s prompt, she fishes out ticket stubs from the bouquet. Wen Kai explains that he was embarrassed to meet her because he knew he was going overseas and didn’t even take the exams.

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In a flashback (we are big on flashbacks here), we see Wen Kai hiding behind a pillar and being torn because he wanted to see Yu Tang. A big screenshot just so you can appreciate Aaron’s eyelashes.

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After he ran away with the instant film, he watched Yu Tang leave the park and cried. He went back to the spot where she was waiting and pieced the torn ticket together.

Sorry, I can only meet you this way. I’m not good enough now. I can’t protect you. I will work hard, till the day I’m no longer the Zero King but someone who can give you my shoulder. I will come back and take care of you. 

Just like how she waited for him, he knew she would be there. Yu Tang thanks him for letting her know all this. In return, he thanks her for giving him the opportunity to fulfill the promise ten years ago.

The scene freezes and Wen Kai suddenly talks to the audience. Why did they take so long to get together? “Because I’m a rookie in love.” With another string of flashbacks, Wen Kai voiceovers how he didn’t have the courage to confess or pursue her. He intentionally lost bets so that he could treat her to meals. After many “intentionally”, there was a sense of chemistry and he even managed to invite her for prom. He was convinced that he had a small place in her heart and finally mustered the courage to confess (thus buying the recorder). But Yu Tang caught him with the recorder and he snatched it back.

Sometimes I wonder, if I didn’t take the recorder back, would the ten years have been different? 

As young Wen Kai mulled over the recorder, that was when he got into the fight with the bullies. Due to his immature self, he didn’t even explain the misunderstanding to her, not to mention his confession. He thought he could patch up with Yu Tang after Zhong Mum’s invite, but Zhong Mum passed away before then.

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“I am happy, because I can finally fulfill my promise. I am a man with a shoulder now and I can take care of Yu Tang.” I can’t take the shoulder phrase hahaha everyone has shoulders.

I like the little monologue at the end, because the whole show is about Yu Tang and Team 3 being rookies and Wen Kai being the smart, ingenious one. This point about him being a rookie in the love department adds a human touch to his character and to the show – everyone’s a rookie in something at some point in time. I also like how they tie up the various flashbacks chronologically for us. Before this, I didn’t really know how each flashback ties in with the other.

I guess now it makes even more sense why he reacted so strongly when Yu Tang pretended they weren’t even friends – because he was just about to confess to her the day before.

Off they go for a carousel ride. They stare at each other with love as Yu Tang voice overs, Ji Wen Kai you are really back. He wants her to know that he will always be there, no matter when she’s sad or happy.

As the music swells, he moves towards her. Wow are they going to attempt a kiss across the two horses?

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Yes, they are indeed, as we see Wen Kai expertly maneuvers a deep kiss…and manages to stay on even as Yu Tang’s horse bumps up and down. As Aaron and Joanne have put it behind the scenes, this is an action movie hahaha.

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The episode officially ends with Yu Tang expertly dealing with a sudden problem. Work hard and be prepared. “Dear rookies, let us head towards a beautiful future, let’s fly high!”

After the episode, that’s when we have the happily ever afters, which is kind of refreshing, although this was probably not how it was supposed to pan out since the drama was originally 20 episodes long and they probably squeezed loads of stuff into this last episode.

Team 3 is officially a department now. Meng He is promoted to the second in command of the sales department. Fortune teller predicts that Meng He will get a kiss from a good looking guy 8pm at the recycling spot. Why? Because he’s ready to confess. What a funny spot for confession hahaha.

As for the angel Ai Sha (intra-episode throwback to the white figurine), he predicts that her true love is just next to her. “Within a month, someone you know will confess to you – ” he promptly knocks into a glass panel. HAHA. Oh no please tell me it’s not Zi Yu. I can’t think of anyone else offhand.

You Rui’s business is going well and he tells Jia Yin that he will definitely chase up to her, “My goal and role model.” However, Jia Yin decides to choose her ex-husband, who is now a fiance. OH NOOO Johnny is her fiance now. The message from You Rui gave me false hope.

Hui Xin and Liang Yu are the golden couple in the writing industry (they got famous from adapting Wen Kai/ Yu Tang’s story into a novel HAHA).

As for the couple, they are living happily. Yu Tang demands for new pieces of toast,

Wen Kai feeds her anddd….

-the end-

I think I will have drama blues:( Who is going to entertain me now?? Also this was an incredibly long recap T.T

What I didn’t exactly like in this episode was that after you know that Yu Tang is in the plan and that Wen Kai plans to tell her the truth that night, the whole last-day scene doesn’t make that much sense anymore when I watched it a second time. Okay…so Yu Tang was crying all this time because she knew she’s going to leave (for work) (for a period of say what, two weeks??). That still seems weird, why she would want to act in front of Wen Kai. It’s also weird that Wen Kai would put up a show in front of Yu Tang when he was planning to tell her the truth that night all along. Also, in the behind the scenes, they were also laughing at the cut to him sleeping hahaha, because now we know he didn’t fall asleep from telling stories, so did he just fall asleep immediately after the exchange with Ai Sha? (Their joke, not mine).

That aside, I’m pretty satisfied at the effort put in in tying up loose ends. I think this show isn’t strong in the business side of the plot. It’s too simplistic at times and the cast often doesn’t act very well. What really draws me in is the couple + their acting + the various flashbacks and little twists here and there. I can see that there was coherence from episode one till the end and I appreciate the drama for that.

I like it that Ai Sha remained true to Wen Kai, like the angel she is. She’s a gem of a second lead seriously. In fact, I would say that even Zi Yu’s a special kind of second lead – one who appears like a complete good guy to one with more depth and ambition. I think it’s regretful they didn’t build him into a more likeable character in the first part of the show, because I must say I only felt any sense of emotions towards him when he became the bad guy. I like it that he’s driven by greed and ambition, and not to say that he’s pure evil hearted. However, I think that the turn about at the end only addressed the business manipulations and does not adequately address his feelings towards Yu Tang.

All in all, it was a good watch. I enjoyed myself every week and towards the end, I was eager for the next one to be out. I think Aaron acted well in this one (although I might have said that of his every drama oops). If you haven’t caught this episode, you can watch it right here on Viki !

Let me know all your thoughts, till the next (Aaron Yan) drama, take care!

<3thoughtsramble

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2 Comments

  1. I *knew* Ai Sha was good. 🙂 So refreshing to have a second-lead-female not turn evil. Haha – she really is like a second wife. I agree, too, about the crying – if she had it all figured out, the crying was silly. Oh – as for the business side of things – this is why so many corporations have non-compete agreements with their employees! Just think, if all those sales-people and secretaries were barred from working in cosmetics for x-years after leaving Tian Xi, there wouldn’t have been much of a story. 😉

    I heard they had to film the carousel kiss multiple times since the moving horses caused a lot of NGs. I remember watching it and thinking I wouldn’t want to be kissed by a moving target like that – doesn’t look very comfortable!

    Aaron is a great actor. I’ll be hoping he returns from his break quickly and resumes acting again. 🙂 Though I’ll be sad if he quits the romcoms, which I know he probably wants to do. 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    • SO SORRY FOR LATE REPLY. Anyway, it is indeed super refreshing! I’m watching Doctors now and it’s back to the same old evil female lead. Ai Sha was such a gem. The crying really didn’t make any sense although I appreciate the effort to give us some sense of a twist. Yep I saw it on behind the scenes myself, it was HILARIOUS. Aaron kept trying to aim for her mouth to no avail.

      I think he will only be gone for a few months actually, based on his FB update. I will be very sad though, if indeed he quits romcoms. His dramas have been the source of my romcoms in the recent years.

      By the way, thanks for sticking around L!(:

      Liked by 1 person

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