When coincidences repeat themselves, you tend to believe it’s fate. I didn’t know back then that the fate was created by that woman on purpose
– Kim Yoon-jin
We’ve got another female-centric thriller in dramaland following the premiere of OCN’s Mistress. Though the two share a lot of similarities, I find Secret Mother more mysterious and dark but less scandalous.
Lisa Kim: a friend or an enemy?
This is only the pilot episode but I’ve already got a number of questions I’m dying to knows the answers to! But because it successfully kept the mystery a mystery, let’s take a look at the characters instead of making our head spins by theorizing who killed who and what was actually going on.
First is Kim Yoon-jin (Song Yoon-ah), a former psychiatrist. She stepped down from her job to focus on her responsibilities as a mother but obviously, there’s more to it that we don’t know yet. And though it’s pretty normal to have mothers directly supervising their children’s schooling, Yoon-jin appears to be doing it for a whole different reason which to prevent a traumatic experience from happening again: losing a child. We saw that a mysterious lady took her daughter some years ago and disappeared right before her eyes. No wonder why Yoon-jin would easily go frantic in tensed situations.
Then, we’ve got Kim Eun-young (Kim So-yeon) who poses as Lisa Kim, the would-be tutor to Kim Yoon-jin’s child. I don’t know her real intention in approaching Yoon-jin but it must be related to her sister, who after meeting Yoon-jin as her clinician, banished. All I know is that she’s skillful enough to get herself hired immediately by Mirae Consulting to execute her plans.
The neighborhood ahjummas
Now, let’s focus on the three ladies who could be the suspect in trying to kill Lisa Kim because, after the falling incident, we’ve seen these three all looking suspicious:
Song Ji-ae (Oh Yeon-ah) was at an emergency stairway, sobbing uncontrollably and with her one shoe left on the steps.
Myung Hwa-sook (Kim Jae-hwa) was nervously trying to wash the blood off her hands.
Kang Hye-Kyung (Seo Young-hee) was hiding herself looking scared and shaking.
But what could be their motive in killing her? Let’s take a look at these women’s lives.
Ji-ae just appears to be that mom who wants her child stand out from the rest of her peers. She seemed to be the most bothered learning about Yoon-jin hiring a private tutor.
Meanwhile, Hwa-sook has just divorced her husband (Ahn Sang-woo) and aside from that, we know nothing else. So far, she’s the one I’m least suspicious of.
On the other hand, Seo Young-hee is also estranged with her beau (Min Sung-wook) but they pretended to be living together in front of their child (and maybe, other people as well). And though she looked the most reserved, we saw him oggling Mr. Min (Kwon Do-kyun), her child’s swimming instructor.
However, aside from not wanting their children to lag behind Yoon-jin’s son now that he has a tutor, I couldn’t find any reason that would drive them to kill Lisa Kim. That very reason alone seems to be farfetched in the first place. All I know is that these women were not really fond of Yoon-jin seeing how they left her out in their group chat.
So could it be Yoon-jin who really killed her and is just putting on a show?
The thorn among the flowers
Other than the husbands of the neighborhood ahjummas, we’ve got two more men whose roles appear to have more significance. Both of them are connected to Yoon-jin.
We’ve got Han Jae-yeol (Kim Tae-woo), Yoon-jin husband. He is the youngest police chief superintendent to be promoted in the last three years. He looks like an upright cop and a good husband and a caring father. But when a writer put in another male character that was prepositioned to have some sort of ‘romantic thing’ with the female character, then we could suspect there’s more to her current partner than meets the eye.
That another guy character Ha Jung-wan (Song Jae-rim), he is the detective in charge of Lisa’s case. However, Jung-wan has already met Yoon-jin in the past several times prior to the falling incident. Surely, he’ll play a larger role in the episodes ahead.
This child is so pretty he could be the next Nam Da-reum.
It’s just episode one but I already hate Yoon-jin’s sister-in-law Han Joo-hee (Yeom Ji-yoon) for being so thoughtless. How could she be irresponsible towards Min-joon when something so horrid happened in the past.
I’ve always been a fan of Kim So-yeon for playing diverse roles. And seeing how she’s pulling this one off, which is very far from her real-life persona of being timid and sweet, this girl is one of the best actresses of her time.
And did her character really already die after falling?