Here’s a really quick summary of what went down in Episode 11: Ma Sung’s health is slowly but steadily deteriorating – as he gains a memory, he loses one quickly in return. In this episode, he remembers seeing Kim Bum Soo 3 years ago in Hainan. Meanwhile, Gi Bbeum returns the bribes to Ma Sung’s aunt who jibes at the both of them for wanting to protect each other, when one is poor and one is not going to remember his love at the end.
Ha Im and Ki Joon start taking an interest in each other, and Ha Im even offers to sign with Ki Joon’s agency because she has left Empire. I’m surprised her leaving the agency was shown to the viewers only through a newspaper article, and wonder if CEO Kim went berserk? Anyway, although I hate it whenever Ki Joon throws a tantrum, and when Ha Im was so nasty to Gi Bbeum, the two are quite cute here when Ha Im so generously bought clothes for a broke Ki Joon (instead of the other way round).
Ma Sung knows Gi Bbeum feels bad for taking away what her family members so happily received from his aunt. He thus turns into a fairy godmother and bestows upon the sister bags full of comestics, the brother a paid-for tuition course, and the father, a cactus. The father ponders deeply before naming the cactus, 마성의기쁨 (aka title of this drama). For Gi Bbeum, he arranges for the bus Gi Bbuem is taking to be chocked full of her fans, who rejoice hearing her song played over the bus radio unlike what happened 3 years ago.
Later, CEO Kim lays the foundation for an investigation with false evidence, in order to incriminate Gi Bbeum. I’m so done with CEO Kim behaving like he always has gum in his mouth. It did help initially to carve out the image of a slimy bully, but to this extent? I now wonder in amusement whether this is how Jung Soo Kyo imagines a baddie to behave.
Aunt also steps it up and plans to strip Ma Sung of his title, as well as change the purpose of the Healing Village in the upcoming board meeting. Faced with no choice, Ma Sung decides to up the game at the upcoming event for the Healing Village. Other than telling the press that he will donate 90% of his wealth to charity, and if he dies, all his estate will go the village, he reveals having been inflicted with the Cinderella Memory syndrome (I checked it up, doesn’t seem to be a real name HAHA), a short-term memory loss syndrome.
It’s really such a pity this drama turned out the way it did, which is why I’m not doing full-length recaps anymore (but I’m invested enough to keep writing about it I guess). Episode 11 is pretty decent on its own, but when taken into the big picture, I can’t help but feel like it was a bit of a let down that at this point, all we saw still was Ma Sung fighting alone, and fighting for others. Gi Bbeum says she will protect him and she will protect her love for him, but I can’t quite envision how she can do it. Even if the initial motivation was for Gi Bbeum to heal Ma Sung emotionally, and therefore, her role is pivotal despite perhaps, not rendering physical help, I think that message is lost. Gi Bbeum only initially helps Ma Sung string his days together and to pose some sort of continuity because he remembers her every morning. But now, Ma Sung is facing what seems to be an onset of dementia, with nothing to stop it. And once again, he’s not telling her the truth, which keeps her out of his amnesia plot line.
It’s a pity because there is so much potential for the two plot lines to intertwine and reinforce each other – Gi Bbeum and her being framed 3 years ago, along with Ma Sung, his truck accident and his memory syndrome. They were no doubt conceived as being interlinked, but the way the show developed kinda brought them apart. And I’m also not quite sure how Ma Sung recovering his memory is going to exactly help Gi Bbeum, because he wasn’t there when she was drugged.