Spoiler Zone: My Mister Episodes 11 & 12

Welcome to the Spoiler Zone, everyone!

This is for those of you who want to discuss spoilers, from a “I’ve seen the show and WOW now I’m noticing all these other details in retrospect” sort of angle.

Here’s a Spoiler Zone for you to dig as deep as you’d like, into spoiler territory, WITHOUT the need for spoiler tags or other warnings.

My only request is, PLEASE BE EXTRA MINDFUL OF WHERE YOU ARE COMMENTING. Meaning, please don’t get mixed up, and start talking spoilers in the Open Thread, which could seriously mar the watch experience for a new viewer, OR, a viewer who would really prefer to have the rewatch feel as fresh as possible.

Other than that, READER BEWARE: SPOILERS AHEAD!!!

For the main discussion of episodes 11 & 12, which only deals with spoilers up to the point of the group watch, go here.

ENJOY YOUR SPOILER ZONE, MY FRIENDS! ❤️

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matrice
matrice
5 months ago

Actually, in the end it’s pretty hard to understand why he is not in any of the photos… does the kid never return home for vacation? Does DH never travel to the US to visit?

matrice
matrice
5 months ago

Makes you wonder if sending him abroad was DH’s wife’s idea… Not sure how it meshes with his ideas around family. I get the feeling that not seeing his kid too often is not something he finds pleasing, and it’s sad that in the end his wife seems to see him more than him.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago

Strange how no one seems to ever mention the woman again… she is suspiciously absent.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago

As if she had the right to ask him to distance himself from friends and family

To be clear, there is nothing to say that he should agree to her request. That’s not a right. And it’s ridiculous for her to resent him over it, particularly since she married him fully knowing that this was a central part of his life and personality. And doing this just because she wants to monopolize his attention at the exclusion of other people he loves seems kind of crazy. This sense of insecurity seems like something she should speak to a therapist about, rather than her husband. This request just feels wrong on so many levels.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago
Reply to  matrice

I mean, not to belabor the point, but considering how she attacked her lover over his lack of commitment in the first episode, when he didn’t want to get a second phone, this is the second relationship where she is emotionally dependent on her ability to monopolize her partner’s attention.

This possessive streak and insecurity seems to be a constant pattern in her relationships. It’s something worth investigating, but certainly not with her husband that she had so horrifically betrayed, and certainly not in this psychodrama like fashion where she seems to think she is just entitled to have her husband agree to change a fundamental part of his character.

She is most definitely not, and given we are talking about his fundamental values, which she well knew when she married him, the request itself, let alone her resentment at him not agreeing, appear rather disgusting and wrong.

Again, she is asking this sacrifice of him because essentially she cannot deal with her own insecurities, even when between the two of them, if there is anyone with the right to question someone’s commitment, it would be her husband.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago

she throws the favors in his face as if doing that entitled her to the right to mold him into something else she wanted him to be, and resent him when he wouldn’t comply.

She can try to ask, though there are various levels of appropriateness. In this case, we are talking about his core value, so if she wants to change that one has to wonder why she likes him in the first place. In this episode he complained about her not getting home from work, and he suffered in silence. I don’t think it would have been appropriate for him to ask her to quit her job, given that she found her career of the utmost importance, one of her core values.

In the same way, I think that family and friends are for DH (and JA) core values as well, so I would find it inappropriate to, say, try to distance JA from her grandma, or DH from his mother, as well. Plus, as viewers we can see how extraordinarily valuable the bond bonds in the neighborhood are. What DH’s wife says she hates, JA in the last episodes says she loves so much she would want to be reborn in that neighborhood.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago
Reply to  matrice

she throws the favors in his face as if doing that entitled her to the right to mold him into something else she wanted him to be, and resent him when he wouldn’t comply.

Actually, the original phrase was quite accurate. She is certainly not entitled to assume he should agree. And after the cheating, she has no right to ask this of him at all -he needs all the emotional support he can get-. But even before, we are in extremely creepy, controlling territory, particularly because she married him fully knowing this and he has never hidden that his friends and family are a core part of who he is. Particularly asking that of him out of some sort of possessiveness and insecurity that would better be dealt with by a therapist than a spouse. Nothing of this request feels like it’s right.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago
Reply to  matrice

she throws the favors in his face as if doing that entitled her to the right to mold him into something else she wanted him to be, and resent him when he wouldn’t comply.

We are basically talking a “technical” right here. There is no denying that, after agreeing to marrying him and knowing fully well what his relationship with friends and family was like, it’s pretty disgusting to be asking him to abandon a core part of his life and a central aspect of his values. And his agreement is not something she is just entitled to.

Nothing about this request seems like a decent, right thing to do. Particularly when you think that she is asking such a sacrifice for him just to sate her possessiveness and insecurity. It speaks of some emotional immaturity, and her tirade against her lover in the first chapter only stresses that this is not a problem she has only in a relationship with her husband, she seems to be emotionally dependent of monopolizing her partner’s attention.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago

The scene in this chapter really made me root for director brother… I had hoped that at least for him there would have been a clear happy ending, though it looks promising in the final episodes.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago

I really hoped that they would have had more time together, but the separation (his from his wife and hers from him) was necessary for them to grow into independent people and dismiss their baggage. Or at least that’s what I tell myself to rationalize them not being together all this time (:sob).

Anyway, as strange as it might sound Ji An in this chapter, as awesome as she was, was not even top-awesome (that’s for the police station scene). Though her teasing his wife was fun to watch, and she has right -she has lost the right to complain a long time ago-.

Last edited 5 months ago by matrice
matrice
matrice
5 months ago
Reply to  matrice

I think she realized that as well… I have a different interpretation of the scene in the car, supported by the scene in the last chapter where she talks about Ji An making her feel even worse when she displayed such a strong will to protect DH and always be by his his side. Basically, I think that this was just acceptance of the fact that JA, even as a hired enemy, was much better to DH than she was as his wife. She realizes that she likes him and that she deserves him more than her.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago

If there’s a saving grace in his life, it would be Ji An. No wonder in the 14th episode his wife confesses to have essentially been made to feel bad by the realization the girl had feelings for him and would be willing to go to such length for him.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago

I mean, I wonder what this “compromise” would look like. Let’s talk clearly: she wanted him to distance himself from friends and family. That’s about the same as asking Ji An to distance herself from her grandma: a non starter. She didn’t think of them as family, he did.

In general, given what we know, the idea that he would distance himself from people that always had his back in order to appease someone that would:

  • Betray him with his worst enemy.
  • Deceive him for a year.
  • Stand by said enemy’s side and be willing to divorce her husband, while her lover planned to fire him, enlisting the help of an accused murderer.
  • Try get her husband out of a job by manipulating his supposed feelings of insecurity, with an eye to divorcing him as soon as he was out of the door. He would then be left with a mortage on the house and a failed new business on his hand, as she would leave him for his worst enemy and thus his confidence and emotional state would be wrecked right when he needed to focus 100% in the most critical startup time.
  • Stand by the side as he and her ex lover fought over the job, being more concerned with having chosen the “wrong” lover (defined as someone that would say stuff behind her back and lie about camping, not as one that would hurt her husband, someone she has known for years and her child’s father -the latter was not a deal breaker-).
  • Treat him shortly and impatiently thorough all that, and even trying to question his commitment, and gaslight him, despite them both knowing what she has done (and in some of these occasion, her knowing he knows).
  • Not care about his emotional safety even during an apology (recriminations when he just confessed to having made to feel unworthy of a shred of respect) -a conversation to be had, preferably before betraying him, but certainly not during a moment that was supposed to be about him, not about her need to went her insecurities without stopping to think -otherwise she would not have said that his kid be better off without the connection to his extended family, or not grasp the simple concept that asking her who she loves more between her husband or her son, or if she loves her husband less since she loves her son, is crazy.
  • Attack him, have him point out you were never home and he didn’t want to be alone, backtrack and cite “vicious cycle”, proceed to not offer a compromise, but to spurn one when he offers one. Despite them both knowing of her betrayal, and him understandably wanting to lean on his friends and stay well away from her.
  • Not feel any guilt during any of that, only starting to feel guilty now.
  • Think it completely normal to marry someone and then do favors to his family and spend time with his brothers just because she wants to turn Dong Hoon to her side and let him mold him into who she wants. Have him refuse to compromise some of his deepest, most central values, and then resent him for it, when it was completely unfair to ask him that in the first place.

What do we have on the other hand? People that would never betray him, and for that matter nobody of their group. That would house Ji An no question asked. That would go to he grandma’s funeral, and, in the case of his brother, pay for it with his entire wordly possessions. And in the case of his colleagues, people that would support as his wife’s affair became the talk of the office. In short, people that would have his back in his worst moments.

Tldr, to accept any compromise that meant worsening the relationship or distancing himself from them, for someone that would do the things his wife did, would be absolute foolishness. Like stealing from the poor to give to the crook.

Last edited 5 months ago by matrice
matrice
matrice
5 months ago

If this is to be the last moment of catharsis, I would have liked her to reflect back on her first scene with her lover, in episode one, where she fought with him over him not carrying a second phone, the parallels with her habitual treatment of Dong Hoon, and whether she sees a connection or pattern.

Last edited 5 months ago by matrice
matrice
matrice
5 months ago

I really think that Ji An was his guardian angel in all this. Not to mention that without him, the whole affair debacle would have never been discovered. Which would have led to her discovering who she was with when he didn’t marry her (sorry not sorry).

matrice
matrice
5 months ago

I mean, she does not reflect herself on how her ghosting his family events, such as in the first episode and in the seventh, causes him pain. At the wedding, when she ghosted him and his family to be with her lover at the seaside, he felt pain at her missing, and he felt pain at her not calling him the whole day. We see her do that often (only to complain about him being there without her). He just stands there bottling everything up, in silence, unable to continue the conversation at the table. It’s the opposite of her attacking her lover for not carrying a second phone.

In this self regarding tirade, she never once thought of the wounds she inflicted him, herself. By those actions and by her attempts to change him, to make him feel wrong. Nor, unfortunately, will her regret go deeper than the cheating and trying to get him out of a job (which, of course, she deserves to feel guilty about). He just didn’t want to change a core part of himself for her. It was unfair of her to ask. She raised a fish and wanted it to fly.

Last edited 5 months ago by matrice
matrice
matrice
5 months ago

The main point here is that she wanted a nuclear family (Dong Hoon and her kid) and he wanted an extended one, and to be part of a community. I think it’s sad that she could never see the beauty in the people from the neighborhood the same way Ji An did. They were accepting of everyone regardless of their circumstances, and welcomed Ji An with open arms.

They went to her grandma’s funeral, and housed Ji An when she needed it. The theme of death and how community helps cope with it is raised, and Ji An paradoxically finds that the funeral of her grandmother is one of her happiest days. It’s also a generational and interpersonal promise (w.r.t. his mother).

Dong Hoon’s brother even paid for the funeral using all his possessions. Compare that with the transactional nature of his wife’s actions. She did favors and spent time around them with an eye towards ingratiating herself to Dong Hoon and molding him into what she wished. She was unable to and resented him for it.

The sad thing is that in the end she ends up living with her child abroad, and until the end she doesn’t catch more than a glimpse of the beauty around he, a beauty that she doesn’t see and she hates. If only she could have looked at them with her husband’s or her child’s eyes.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago
Reply to  matrice

I had hoped that maybe Ji An would have helped her see them better, like how she allowed her to see Dong Hoon’s call to ask whether she needed anything with love and acceptance, as a sign of kindness and care, and not of frustration.

matrice
matrice
5 months ago
Reply to  matrice

I mean, it’s her loss, but the thing is that, as an audience, we appreciate how marvelous they are, and she never has a moment of epiphany.

actionscript
actionscript
8 months ago

I know the feelings that JA and DH harbor might seem like a mystery, and one reason is that unlike in other typical romance genres, such feelings were not laid out openly and early in this series, and were kept subtle all throughout. Another is that the feelings of JA and DH didn’t follow the same trajectory, they came to the fore at totally different points in the story. For now, these four scenes in episodes 11 & 12 seem to indicate that at this point of the show, Ji An’s love for Dong Hoon is romantic in nature:

1.      When Yoon Hee called JA to ask if she likes DH: That’s a typical scenario of a wife asking the other woman if she likes her husband, and apparently the context is that it is romantic in nature. And the situation when she called her – she was in the middle of driving and had to stop by the curb to make the call, indicates some sense of urgency to confront JA about it. And I liked how kfangirl put it – she was both saddened and relieved by JA’s answer. (Kudos indeed to Yoon Hee the actress.. That mix of emotions is very hard to pull through!) I felt some kind of approval in her tone, when she thanked JA for calling her for help.

2.      When Dir Yoon asked her if she likes DH: Since the purpose is to pin down DH for having an illicit relationship with a subordinate, that question implies JA liking DH in a romantic way. JA answered to the affirmative, but smart as she is, she spun the situation to appear that it is but natural for anyone in her position to fall in love for such a kind boss and manager.

3.      When she threw away the slippers: JA was obviously hurt when DH didn’t wear the slippers she gave, apparently she interpreted it as a rejection. The deeper you love, the deeper you hurt.

4.      Her whole spiel to DH in the train in ep 12, when she told him she did OT work because she missed him: “You didn’t make yourself clear. You made me like you even more. That’s not how you dump someone. You made me like you even more by saying all kinds of nice things. Don’t worry though. I won’t make it obvious.”
Mixing the terms “I missed you.. like you even more.. dump.. won’t make it obvious.” I don’t think one would combine the use of those terms to a feeling that’s platonic.

I think from ep 8 onwards, JA feelings has started to grow for DH, and it is definitely romantic in nature. DH’s feelings for JA follows a different trajectory, and at this point he is not yet confronting whatever is starting to brew inside of him, as there’s so much on his plate. JA was right, DH didn’t dump her, he was just not yet ready to deal with her. And that is symbolized by the slippers — he kept them at his cabinet, looked at them from time to time, but he’s not yet ready to take them out and wear them. And when JA threw them out, he requested for another pair, signaling what his whole spiel for her in the street meant– he is not ready to let her go just yet.

Elaine Phua
Elaine Phua
8 months ago
Reply to  actionscript

Wow good points! Also the fact that she bought slippers… Its rather a wifely thing to notice that your man’s shoes (or socks, or shirt) are worn out and he needs new ones isn’t it? Not sure if there’s cultural significance in Korea on slippers. I’m guessing it’s not the typical thing a subordinate buys her boss. Maybe something more like ginseng supplements which they’re always buying on other K dramas due to product placement haha.

actionscript
actionscript
8 months ago
Reply to  Elaine Phua

Yes, slippers are relatively a more personal gift than what we would normally give to colleagues. And that’s why on the two attempts that JA made to hand over the slippers, it was outside the office, because she was giving them to DH as a personal gift and not as his subordinate. 

the_sweetroad
8 months ago
Reply to  actionscript

@actionscript and @Elaine Phua, good point about the personal nature of slippers!

the_sweetroad
8 months ago
Reply to  actionscript

Nice breakdown of these episodes. I think of all the indications you listed, one of the key ones would be Yoon Hee asking – and understanding – that Ji An likes her husband “that way.” That’s what Do Joon Young had just implied to Yoon Hee on the rooftop after all. This plays into her feeling ashamed in Episode 15, that Ji An loved and cared about Dong Hoon in a way that she (Yoon Hee) hadn’t.

Also, there is a key moment on the rooftop where we peek behind the curtain into Yoon Hee and Dong Hoon’s current state of marriage. Yoon Hee tells Do Joon Young, “You can’t imagine the hell we’re going through…I have to put up with his loathing…I’m going to wait until he doesn’t think that we divorce because of you, but because of us.” (paraphrasing from memory; don’t quote me! 🙂 )

This echoes back to Do Joon Young’s comment to Young Hee when they met at that cafeteria in Ep 10: “Sunbae knows that once you know that he knows about the affair, you won’t be able to live with him.”

Once again Do Joon Young is so astute, knowing that Yoon Hee wouldn’t be able to live with DH once the affair was out in the open between DH and YH.

And of course, this talk on the rooftop also calls back to Ep 10 when the bar owner says, “I hate my wife. I hate that she’s trying. Either I wait 3 years and divorce her, or 10 years and divorce her.” YH tells Do Joon Young that DH loathes her. It’s too bad…but the bar owner already shared about it from his own experience, and it sounds like DH is having a similar experience of loathing a wife who cheated. (Probably because he, like the bar owner, also couldn’t stop thinking about his wife with the other man.)

So by now, Ep 12, I think we have an idea of how DH and YH’s marriage is going to go, IF we follow these clues.

eda harris
eda harris
8 months ago
Reply to  actionscript

i accept all the points you bring up, and yet there is one lingering question or doubt in my mind, which you avoided here. dh tells ja  “if we run into each other decades later, i’m going to greet you, i ‘ll be glad to see you again”… how do you interpret this? to me it sounds like he does not have plans to include her in his future life, (or he would not have said it this way) if they meet “decades later”… so they are not going to be together and may be bump into each other years later. i have no doubts that they will never forget each other, and will forever consider each other friends that are grateful forever for their mutual contribution to their very existence in this lifetime.

actionscript
actionscript
8 months ago
Reply to  eda harris

At this point, DH is definitely still “friend-zoning” JA. He has been consistently being drawn to her subconsciously, but he himself has not acknowledged whatever is starting to brew inside him. For me, his feelings only started to surface by the end of ep 13 onwards, when he realized JA had quit the company and might have run away for good. It’s the classic case of realizing what you’ve lost after you’ve lost it. But we can see in his words and actions that he has been keeping a distance, quite evident starting in ep 13, and rightfully so. He is drawing the boundaries with JA, as he knew perfectly well it is the right thing to do. He is married, and JA is his subordinate in Saman. So anything beyond being friends is definitely inappropriate.

JA is smart though. When she told DH “That’s not how you dump someone” at the train in ep 12, she knew exactly what his whole spiel meant. Dh was not totally brushing off JA, he was just not yet ready to deal with her at the moment.

And putting that line “If we run across each other.. “ in DH’s spiel has a purpose. During their goodbye conversation in ep 14 at the phone booth, JA threw back that question to DH. The point is not what DH replied, but HOW he replied – his tone, his emotions, his overall disposition when he heard that question thrown back at him. He gave a forced “hmm” like he couldn’t bring himself to give a yes. That was the purpose of that line in ep 11, to serve as a call back in ep 14 when JA threw it back to DH and he couldn’t get himself to answer properly. 

actionscript
actionscript
8 months ago
Reply to  actionscript

I think it should go something like it’s a classic case of not appreciating what you have until you’ve lost it. 😆