New Tales of Gisaeng Review episodes 11-20

Here’s the next brief recap of the story line from episodes 11-20. Sa Ran is finally pushed into joining the gisaeng house, so in the next part we’ll see how that works out. Her step mum really stepped up to the wicked step mother role here and succeeded in making me angry! She is so manipulative using different tricks to make Sa Ran financially support the family. And Sa Ran’s dad is so weak he was annoying me even more! He just sits back and agrees with everything his wife decides to do. Even when it comes to telling Sa Ran about her real mother. I felt sorry for Sa Ran and was disappointed that even though she stands up to her step mother, she falls for her manipulative tricks in the end too. Some family secrets are revealed, Da Mo and Sa Ran break up, and  Da Mo decides he may as well get married -to anyone – as long as they are rich and acceptable to his family! Ra Ra changes dramatically – She has to grow up quickly after she learns more about her family. She becomes more mature but luckily now there’s another spoilt brat on the scene to take her place – Da Mo’s new girlfriend!

Sa Ran and Da Mo’s story

Da Mo is still having problems at home and is frustrated about the way his dad treats him and his mum.  He tries to get his mum to stand up to his dad. But she won’t – when her husband comes home drunk and shouts at her, she obediently rushes off to get him his usual honey water. And in the morning when he complains that the kimchi in the chi-ge (stew) is not soft enough, she meekly tries to explain that there’s not much time in the morning to cook. His reply is that she should get up at 4am to make sure it’s cooked properly! Nice chap. He couldn’t be more different to Sa Ran’s dad. Da Mo tries to support his mum in these situations but she stops him when he tries to say something. She doesn’t want an argument and just wants to keep the peace. Why does she put up with this all the time?

Da Mo tries to stand up to his dad, New Tales of Gisaeng, SBS

Ra Ra is still upset and confused about why Da Mo doesn’t want to date her. She doesn’t think he has a girlfriend so when she bumps into his dad, she tells him that Da Mo must be gay. Da Mo’s dad is shocked. He goes snooping in Da Mo’s room and finds Sa Ran’s hair clip in the drawer, and then he tells his wife that he has found ‘evidence’ in Da Mo’s room that DA Mo is gay! I don’t think Da Mo’s dad would make a good detective – a hair clip and the word of a jilted girl are hardly compelling proof.  But Da Mo’s mum is shocked at the ‘news’ too. At dinner they question him but he denies it. His parents are worried (they live in a conservative society) but dad says he will support his son no matter what. Finally we see a softer side to Da Mo’s dad and genuine concern for his son. Da Mo obviously hasn’t told his parents that he is seeing Sa Ran although their relationship seems to be getting stronger. Sa Ran is popular with his grandmother too, who actually wants them to start dating, and the three of them go out together to the cinema!

Sa Ran goes out with Da Mo and his grandmother

But one day Sa Ran’s friend Ah Mi sees Da Mo and Sa Ran walking along arm in arm and she takes a photo of them on her phone. Later Ah Mi questions Sa Ran about this. She confesses that she is dating Da Mo but asks her friend not to tell Ra Ra. Oh No. This means the end of the secret. Meanwhile, Da Mo suddenly decides to go to Japan to think about his relationship with Sa Ran.

Da Mo in the hot spring. 

So the moment arrives when Ra Ra discovers that Sa Ran is dating Da Mo. The friends are having a drink together and someone has let the secret out. Ra Ra is fuming. She throws water in SaRan’s face and storms out. Then later, drunk and jealous she storms round to Sa Ran’s flat. This time she smacks Sa Ran across the face. Sa Ran is too genteel (and probably guilty) to fight back, so Gong Joo steps in to protect her and has a cat fight with Ra Ra instead! Hair-pulling and everything. Son Ja and Sa Ran have to pull them apart. Their friendship is in tatters and Son Ja escorts Ra Ra away and drives her home.

Ra Ra discovers that Sa Ran is dating Da Mo, New Tales of Gisaeng, SBS

Sa Ran feels bad but at the same time is looking forward to seeing Da Mo when he gets back from Japan. His grandmother tells her it’s his birthday so she gets a friend to help her make him a birthday cake. They meet for dinner but he is looking serious and tells her that he wants to break up –  because he was only ever after her body! Charming. He is not interested in getting to know her. Oh dear. Stunned, she tells the waiter to throw the cake away and leaves in shock. I don’t know what to make of this. Is this how he really feels or does he just think that there is no way he can marry her because of her background? Is he trying to be kind?

Fate is starting to go against Sa Ran. Da Mo’s grandmother, who was on Sa Ran’s side, dies suddenly. Sa Ran is torn because she wants to go to the funeral but knows Da Mo will be there. She goes to the funeral hall but then can’t make herself go in.

Da Mo seems upset about the break up too but as he has convinced his parents that he is not gay, they start trying to find him a wife. But they have high standards and want someone educated at a S.K.Y university. (Seoul, Korea, or Yonsei) They set him up with some blind dates. Da Mo’s grandmother told them that she thought Sa Ran was suitable, but his mother doesn’t think she is good enough for him. After all, she  has to dance for money so she can’t be well off. And after Da Mo’s dad has her investigated, they discover that although she is pretty and gets good grades, her mum works in the gisaeng house kitchen and (shock, horror) she is not even her real mum. No, Sa Ran will not do. They find several suitable girls from wealthy families. One seems fine until they discover she is a vegan. A vegan. Oh how terrible. The family are shocked to hear this! They certainly don’t want to live with her!

Da Mo and Sa Ran break up

Sa Ran’s step mum is still on her quest to have Sa Ran financially support the family. So at first, when she heard from the private investigator that Sa Ran and Da Mo were dating, she was pleased and started being especially nice to her –  thinking Sa Ran was going to marry a rich man. She even wondered whether to get plastic surgery before meeting her future in laws to discuss Sa Ran’s marriage. But now she discovers through the investigator that Sa Ran and Da Mo broke up so she turns to Plan B – get Sa Ran to become a gisaeng. She even encourages Sa Ran’s weak father to persuade her too. But Sa Ran knows that gisaengs have a bad reputation in Korea and she wants to be a professional dancer. She refuses and Step mum starts making Sa Ran’s life at home unpleasant, finally putting her silk blouse in the washing machine and ruining it on purpose. When this doesn’t work she goes to Plan C – tell Sa Ran that she was an orphan. Again Dad stands weakly by. Step Mum has her strategy – first she tries again to persuade Sa Ran to become a gisaeng, then she pretends to be upset and starts ‘pretend’ packing saying that Sa Ran doesn’t want to look after her and Gong Joo. (Go on then, leave, I was shouting at the screen at this point.) Then she pretends to let it slip that she knows a secret about Sa Ran’s birth. Of course now Sa Ran has to ‘persuade’ her to tell her. Wow!!! And what a way to learn the truth. She learns from the step mother that she doesn’t like that she was left on someone’s door step and nobody knows where she came from. She checks with her dad that this is true and storms out.

Sa Ran has trouble with her step mum

Sa Ran is in shock. She borrows money from Son Ja and goes straight to the gisaeng house. It looks like her step mother has finally won. But Ms. Oh sees that Sa Ran has not thought this through so she gives her some money and tells her to think about it more. She can pay her back or not – whatever – if she doesn’t join the house. Sa Ran goes to her mother’s grave.

Sa Ran has a lot to deal with – her step mother, their lack of money, the truth about her past, and Da Mo turning up everywhere she goes. He still can’t leave Sa Ran alone.

Sa Ran has been working part time at a restaurant and Da Mo turns up there with a date! He tells her has no intention of marrying her (thanks!) so wants her to be an adopted daughter in his family so that they can live together as brother and sister (This is getting weird now) He even suggests this idea to his parents. And they agree to meet her (!) Sa Ran says no, though. (I’m not surprised.) Da Mo decides that he might as well just get married and have a child as his parents want him to. He reckons it doesn’t matter who the girl is, so he decides to bring his current girl home to meet his parents. Ra Ra bumps into Da Mo in a bar with his girlfriend and after talking to Gong Joo (who has a great fight with Da Mo’s girlfriend) realizes that he is planning to marry. She has to tell Sa Ran.

Da Mo’s new girlfriend complete with red wine mustache!

Ra Ra tells Sa Ran that it looks like Da Mo is getting married.

Ra Ra’s story

Ms. Han is in shock that Ra Ra is not her daughter after all. Where is the baby she left on the door step of Dr. Geum’s house? Stressed out she takes time off work.

Dr. Geum continues to try to find the adjumma they gave the baby to by putting an advert in the paper. The rest of the family wonder why Grandfather keeps asking about the adjumma and so to stop them getting suspicious grandmother tells him to act like he has dementia! The plan works. Grandfather takes a bowl of water outside to pray to find his granddaughter, while his daughter in law looks on, sadly.

Ra Ra’s family are concerned about her grandfather. 

Ra Ra’s grandparents are clutching at straws and wonder if Sa Ran could be their missing granddaughter as she looks so familiar, so they try to find out her birthday. They find an excuse to go to her house and take presents. But they are disappointed when they see Sa Ran’s mum as they don’t recognize her as the adjumma who worked for them.  Sa Ran is surprised about the gifts but they all enjoy the Korean beef they were given as a gift for dinner.

Sa Ran’s family

Ra Ra’s grandfather has made himself ill with worry and goes to hospital. When he comes out he plans to get a paternity test to see if he is related to Sa Ran. He wants to get a strand of her hair so invites her to the house. If he can do this then all will be revealed. But of course, as he reaches up to her hair he falls back on the bed and dies. Sa Ran is the only one in the room. At the funeral Ms. Han and Sa Ran pass each other in a meaningful slow motion moment in the ladies loo. It’s an emotional funeral, but now that Grandfather is gone things are about to change…

Ra Ra’s mum and aunt look thoughtful during the funeral proceedings

Soon after the funeral, in an UNBELIEVABLE move, Ra Ra’s aunt and uncle go to her house and (without consulting her parents first) TELL RA RA that they are her real parents. And then they expect her to pack up her stuff and go and live with them!  She refuses of course. And she’s in shock at the news. Then Ra Ra’s mum tells Dr. Geum that she wants a divorce after the 100 days mourning is over. She knows that Dr. Geum doesn’t love her and she only stayed out of respect for Grandfather. Her husband is cold and says lets not bother waiting until after the 100 days of mourning. So they get divorced then they tell Ra Ra who decides to stay with her dad. Being told about the divorce and her real parents all in one go is hard on Ra Ra and she has to grow up quickly!

Ra Ra discovers who her real parents are. Episode 18 New Tales of Gisaeng SBS

Now there’s a new story line. Ra Ra’s uncle calls someone looking for a nurse who used to work at the hospital 20 years ago. Why?? He hears that the woman he is searching for is dead. She never married but she had a son and his name is –  Son Ja. So that’s why recently everyone has been asking Son Ja if he knows who his father is…..

Ms. Oh goes to a beauty salon and Ra Ra’s mum happens to be there too. Ms. Oh overhears her talking to a man on the phone. So it looks like Ra Ra’s mum has got herself a new man. Ms. Oh hopes this means Dr. Geum will be available soon.

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