My. Mind. Is. Blown. If I had previously thought that episode 6 was my favorite before, then this latest episode of “Liar Game” definitely blows it completely out of the water. I’m speechless. Breathless. Thoroughly amazed. Episode 10 was so powerful, so intense, and utterly surprising in the best of ways. There wasn’t a single moment where I could rest my rapidly beating heart and I could only cling on tight to my seat during the second half of the Smuggling Game.
It’s going to be difficult pinpointing only five of the best and most noteworthy scenes, but I’ll give it my best shot!
1. Establishing trust and becoming a true team.
It looks like Jo Dal Goo is still my favorite ahjusshi, after all! As it turns out, Kang Do Young manipulated him by using his worries for Nam Da Jung against him. With the way Jo Dal Goo does his best to protect her, I suppose it didn’t take a genius to figure out that money isn’t his weakness. It’s Nam Da Jung. He betrayed his team because he thought, under Kang Do Young’s trickery, that it would be the best way to protect her.
His tearful confession and overwhelming guilt tore at everyone’s heart, including mine, serving as the turning point for the West Nation. Nam Da Jung was the first to embrace him with open arms and apologizes to him instead of the other way around. Ha Woo Jin showed warmth and actually consoled him, even going so far as to give Jo Dal Goo a shoulder to cry on. Even Jamie looked a bit teary-eyed, even though she continued to lash out with her sharp tongue.
With everything out in the open and smoothed over, Ha Woo Jin prepares to fight and says his magic words, “I have a way to win.” I’m sure you do, Ha Woo Jin. You always do!
2. The West Nation’s winning card is Nam Da Jung.
Ha! HA! Was that… Ha Woo Jin being cute?! My eyes didn’t deceive me, did it? As Ha Woo Jin explains the plan to join forces with the East Nation, sans Kang Do Young, they unanimously decide that the person most suitable to persuade Sung Joon, Bulldog, and Goo In Gi is none other than Nam Da Jung. Oblivious to the scheming around her, she suddenly snaps to attention and realizes that Ha Woo Jin is outright smiling at her, Jamie is fluttering her lashes, and Jo Dal Goo has that sly grin on his face.
But Nam Da Jung is nothing if not efficient in gaining trust and everything goes off without a hitch… for now.
3. Ha Woo Jin unravels Kang Do Young.
The intense showdown between the two masterminds is finally back and better than ever! All I can say is, wow! When Kang Do Young loses his cool, he really loses it. Ha Woo Jin manages to completely shake him up until he’s nothing but a hot, crazy mess rendered incapable of functioning. It took nothing more than a couple of taunts and a brief mention of Kang Do Young being an orphan to set him off, making him seem human for once. Ha Woo Jin is so smug when he tells Kang Do Young that it’s nice to meet him before sauntering out of there.
The change in Kang Do Young is almost frightening. He’s violent, incoherent, and lost in his own world. I really feared for the three contestants who were stuck with him since his instability made him so unpredictable. Who knows what kind of crazy stunt he would randomly decide to pull?
4. Jamie betrays Kang Do Young.
When it was suspected that Jamie would betray everyone and team up with Kang Do Young, I had a feeling that he was about to get a big surprise because something told me Jamie wasn’t going to fall for it this time. If this was the lottery, I would be a millionaire by now because she really did turn the tables on an unsuspecting Kang Do Young and it was magnificent! After all, there’s only so many times you can get burned before realizing you shouldn’t play with fire… or that you can simply douse it with a bucket of water.
With this one action, Jamie officially wins everyone over, but then she puts the cherry on top with her sassy attitude. It was incredibly amusing and gratifying to watch Jamie get her revenge on all the times Kang Do Young had betrayed her.
But I think the best part about this was that Jamie made the decision of her own freewill. It was revealed that she had every intention of betraying them… until Nam Da Jung stepped in. She didn’t do anything except ask Jamie one question, “when you walk out the door, what kind of a person do you want to be?” They didn’t demand that she stay loyal to them. They didn’t demand an answer on what she would do. They simply allowed her to walk into that room and make her choice, come what may.
I felt what really contributed to Jamie’s change of character is finally feeling like she belongs to a team. She’s no longer a loner or the unwanted person in the group. She’s not the most hated individual in the game anymore. With that sense of belonging, Jamie found something far more valuable than additional cash in her pocket and this… was Nam Da Jung’s purpose in continuing the game. This was Nam Da Jung’s ultimate goal: to prove Kang Do Young wrong.
5. The connection to Sungshim Orphanage.
Just as quickly as Ha Woo Jin managed to unravel Kang Do Young, Kang Do Young managed to do the same for Ha Woo Jin. Everything seemingly appears to come crashing down upon him at once: the startling realization that Kang Do Young is connected to, not only Sungshim Orphanage, but also his mother, the fact that he was one step too late in reaching Nam Da Jung and telling her the truth before she heard the verified story from another source, and the blockage of his past memory preventing him from seeing and understanding the whole picture.
Kang Do Young knows him so well, he even has knowledge of Ha Woo Jin burying away his childhood memories, but now he’s offering clues, puzzling as they are. Was Ha Woo Jin’s mother not as giving and kind as he thought? What’s the real story? And how can he gain back the trust he just lost from Nam Da Jung?
The amount of character development in this episode made me a really happy viewer. Not only did Jamie become someone that others can trust as she forms a bond with her West Nation team, but Ha Woo Jin is slowly opening his heart to other people as well (and totally melting mine in the process). In the beginning of his participation in Liar Game, he was aloof, mysterious, and grim with a firm barrier erected around himself.
Now, he’s smiling light-heartedly and building relationships. He can give genuine compliments and looks at Nam Da Jung with new, appreciative eyes. His friendship with Jo Dal Goo has gotten deeper. He can feel amused and concern and is even afraid of hurting those he has become close to. Ha Woo Jin has become… almost tender.
Meanwhile, Nam Da Jung has grown stronger. Before Liar Game, she most likely would have cowered in the face of conflict, but now she can stand, proud and strong, as she puts Kang Do Young in his place. Having money is not victory, it’s about having people standing by your side. She’s tougher now and not quite as naive as before. As Kang Do Young said, she’s come a long way.
What was quite unfortunate; however… is our poor Sung Joon. I was not expecting what happened to him and I’m upset. He was another beam of light that I particularly enjoyed. I always felt that he had a small crush on Nam Da Jung, which was cute and his willingness to trust in her was endearing. He was a really likeable character, so it’s such a tragic shame that we won’t be seeing him anymore.
It’s also going to hurt me to think about how severed Ha Woo Jin and Nam Da Jung’s friendship is going to be now that the truth is out in the open, but I don’t think their relationship is irreparable. They have been through too much together during the course of Liar Game to simply part ways like that and I’m willing to bet that they will still need each other in the final round. We even got a hint of something more between them near the end of this episode… or was that my and Jo Dal Goo’s squeal worthy delusion? He he.
The cast of “Liar Game” is, without a doubt, absolutely remarkable. Every single person flawlessly portrayed their characters down to the smallest detail and the most subtle facial expressions. I’m equal parts amazed and impressed at their skills. As much as I’m dreading the end of “Liar Game” next week, I’m really looking forward to the surprises it’ll bring at the same time. Here’s to hoping for a season 2 like the original!
What did you think about episode 10 of “Liar Game?” What kind of a conclusion do you think we’ll be getting? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below as we count down to next week!