I’m not that really invested in this drama but I like the fact that I’m becoming drawn into the story episode by episode. The web of relationships are becoming clearer now, so it’s becoming easier to empathize with our characters.
The episode introduced us to one of the most significant characters in Soo-jin (Lee Bo-young)’s life–the selfless and kind orphanage owner Miss Clara. In the past, Miss Clara was a healthy and gentle woman raising 16 children, left by their biological parents, all by herself. She’s the one who took Soo-jin in when she was abandoned by her mom. She found her locked to the fence so she could not follow her mom. Miss Clara had the lock removed but Soo-jin insisted on sitting there to wait for her mother. Miss Clara sat patiently beside her until she finally opened up.
However, all these touching images were all replaced by sadness and pity when Soo-jin and Yoon Bok (Heo Yool) arrived at the orphanage. The once beautiful home was now an abandoned house to an old, thin Miss Clara who’s now slowly losing her battle to Alzheimer’s. It was heartbreaking to see how this old lady, who took care and loved orphaned children unconditionally, is now living a solitary life with no one caring for her. She seems so vulnerable and yet so wise especially at the few times her memory was lucid. I cried at the scene when she relayed her last message for Soo-jin and Yoon-bok before she finally left the house to go to the hospital. She said:
Yoon Bok, you are my last child. So please take good care of your mother. Your mother was the most fearful among my children. She’d always quake in fear because she couldn’t trust anyone. But you’re with her, which makes me feel relieved. Soo-jin, thank you for becoming a mother. I was so happy to have been able to hold your child. I’d like it if God would allow me to remember this, at the very least. The fact that my Soo-jin became a mother.
I was really in circles trying to figure out who’s Soo-jin’s real mom, so I’m glad this revisit to the orphanage kind of explained the whole thing. Soo-jin has had three mothers. First, her biological mom who left her at the orphanage. We haven’t seen her face and still haven’t found out what’s her real reason for leaving her. Second, Miss Clara who took care of her for two years she spent in the orphanage. Lastly, her adoptive mother (Lee Hye-young), the one who’s trying to find her now. She met Soo-jin at the orphanage when she stayed there for a week for a reason yet unknown. It was a special meeting between the two. Soo-jin initially thought she’s also a child when she saw her weeping under her blanket. She tried to comfort her by telling her that all kids cried and waited for their mothers when they all first arrived there. She laid next to her and explained where the kids’ mothers were: some died, some left, and there was one who got killed. The next thing we saw: she’s adopting Soo-jin. But between that time and now, we’ve still got no clues what happened that they have a rift now.
By the end of the episode, Soo-jin surprisingly showed up in front of her adoptive mother, and I honestly don’t think it will be a healing reunion.
What should Soo-jin really worry now is that the detectives are inching closer to finding out Hye-na is not dead but abducted. Mr. Detective (Jo Han-chul) was never really convinced Hye-na perished in the first place, but seeing him notice a connection between Hye-na and Soo-jin through their affinity for birds, I won’t be surprised, if he’ll figure it all out sooner than expected.
Another looming problem is the disturbing behaviour of Seol-ak (Son Suk-ku), Hye-na’s stepdad. I have a hunch that he’ll soon hunt Soo-jin and Hye-na down for fear he’ll get busted for the abuse he inflicted on the child. I guess this is where the GPS tracker attached Soo-jin’s guy friend (Kim Young-jae) to’Seol-ak’s truck will have a role to play.
I’m not sure whether I just missed that Song Ye-eun (Song Yoo-hyun) was actually the name of the other school teacher, but I’m glad she was the one whom Soo-jin sent the evidence about the abuse because she seemed genuinely concern about Hye-na’s welfare. How she’ll use the evidence–may it be to support or against Soo-jin–we’ll see in the episodes to come.
We’ve also seen a glimpse of Lee Jae-yoon’s doctor role (does he like Messi?) and there’s also another special appearance by this time by veteran actress Nam Gi-ae as a mysterious barber shop owner who gave Yoon Bok a haircut. But it looks like she’s not just any ordinary cameo seeing how she’s taken aback seeing Soo-jin.
Lastly, if your one of those who thought ”Miss Clara is a familiar face where did I see her first” when you watched her in this episode. She’s actually one of the old sisters aboard KTX in the blockbuster Train to Busan. She’s also doing a parade of appearances lately with Wise Prison Life and Untouchables as the most notable ones.