4 Things From Episodes 13 & 14 Of “Tale Of The Nine-Tailed” That Have Us Pumped For The Finale
It’s the penultimate week for “Tale of the Nine-Tailed” and. it. is. nerve. wracking!
All the characters are out and about trying to one up the other side or just merely trying to survive. And while the foxes, snakes, and humans are battling it out trying to put an end to this centuries long feud, the all-powerful Granny Taluipa (Kim Jung Nan) decides it’s time for her to act, which will mean insurmountable losses for both sides. This week’s episodes significantly hiked up the intensity, and really, with multiple characters warning us of the “calamity” and “devastation” to come, how are we supposed to breathe until the finale?
Here are all the reasons this week’s episodes make us so pumped up for the finale:
Warning: You know the drill. Major spoilers ahead!
Granny and Old Man are more heavily involved in the storylines
Granny Taluipa and Old Man Hyun Eui Ong (Ahn Gil Kang) have largely been on the peripheral of the action, only dishing out (cryptic) bits of information every now and then. This week, however, they are brought into the center fold and it seems they are going to have a bigger impact on the overall storyline, which is all very exciting! (Fun fact: The scene where Granny talks to Yeon in the garden is her first “outside” scene!)
In a previous episode, we saw Old Man venting about wanting to get a divorce from his wife. But in that scene, it felt like it was just that — venting and nothing more. But this week, when Granny brings Ji Ah’s death date forward so she can stop The Imoogi, Old Man’s disappointment is palpable. He accuses her of again choosing her job over the people she cares about (she’s the reason behind her son’s and daughter-in-law’s deaths), and realizes that even losing her son isn’t enough for her to change. And so Old Man walks out on her, telling her that just thinking about having to live with her forever is the biggest punishment of all.
Yet, in a way, Granny’s point-of-view is understandable too. She’s the boss, the one-in-charge, and thus naturally has to make big-picture decisions no matter how painful they may be. She chooses to sacrifice Ji Ah in order to save everyone else because in her eyes, all these lives bear the same weight. It’s a terrible cross for her to bear and it’s heartbreaking that no one around her understands the weight of her job.
What is more exciting about this storyline is that one of Yeon and Terry’s plans involves taking down the Gatekeeper of the Sando River. While we later learn that this is another one of Yeon’s fake-out traps, it still gives us pause to wonder if anything will happen to Old Man, especially now that this idea is fermenting in Terry’s mind. And seeing that Old Man is out and about in the world, actively helping Ji Ah and going against Granny, things just appear a little foreboding to him. Here’s to hoping he and Granny will at least be able to reconcile and maybe even heal from the pain of losing their son.
All the loving moments between Ji Ah and Yeon
Yeon (Lee Dong Wook) and Ji Ah (Jo Bo Ah) have been showering us with so many sweet moments since day one, but this week, they really took things to the next level. And I do mean that literally because this week, they finally do the horizontal tango!
When Ji Ah tells Yeon she’s afraid to go home because The Imoogi might rear its ugly head and hurt her parents, Yeon decides to take her on a small trip. Both of them desperately want a taste of normalcy, so they pretend to be an average married couple, complete with backstories. (She’s the breadwinner who doesn’t come home till after midnight, he’s the trophy husband who’s also a recovering alcoholic). It’s kind of silly, and even Ji Ah hilariously says it feels stupid at first, but it’s fun seeing them bickering one second and giggling the next, even if there is a tinge of sadness to it all. The play acting takes a turn to something more sincere, which leads us to the horizontal tango scene mentioned earlier. The scene is done tastefully and beautifully, but it’s still oh so so steamy! (Did you see that raised vein on Lee Dong Wook’s neck? Yowza!)
The following day, while taking a last stroll down the beach before heading back to Seoul, Ji Ah admits that she feels small and powerless, and that the weight of this supposed “fate” of theirs is too much to bear. Again, I really appreciate how the writers have been so consistent with Ji Ah’s characterization. While she’s both tough and resilient, she’s also very self-aware and honest about her fragility. There’s no overblown sense of confidence or gung-ho-ness here and that truly is a heroine we can all get behind.
And speaking of all the sweetness, how about that ending tag scene that shows Yeon and Ji Ah going on a mini date? He picks her up from work because it’s raining, then the two fight over one serving of cup noodles. They’re both so happily in love, which raises the question: Why are we seeing this scene now? Is it as ominous as it appears or are we reading too much into it? Do all these happy, loving moments only spell tragedy for this couple in the finale?
Terry strikes back
Yeon takes a page from the Butler’s (Uhm Hyo Sup) book and decides to pit the two halves of The Imoogi against each other. So when Terry (Lee Tae Ri) becomes annoyed with The Imoogi (and the Butler), and also realizes that Ji Ah will never reciprocate his feelings, he decides to just do what he is best at — creating chaos. He uses the Butler to spread a disease that starts off with itchy rashes, then progresses to throwing up a snake egg, and eventually ends in death. This disease spreads around the police station (the Butler turned himself in as the mummy-murderer) and the broadcasting station, and it eventually gets to two of our own — Team leader Choi (Joo Suk Tae) and Sae Rom (Jung Yi Seo).
Speaking of team leader Choi, when Old Man walks in on the Snail Bride (Kim Soo Jin) taking care of team leader Choi after he falls sick, Old Man immediately recognizes him as the Snail Bride’s husband! Yes, the awkward and slightly cringe-y ahjussi who’s always finding excuses to dine at the Snail Bride’s was her husband in his past life! The very husband she’s been missing and pining for all these years! This piece of information suddenly came out of left field, but I’m totally here for it. Yay for them finding each other again!
Back to Terrible Terry. After he unleashes the egg-spitting disease, Terry is apparently still unsatisfied, because he goes on another killing spree. He even pays Ji Ah’s parents a visit and hypnotizes them into hanging themselves. (Luckily Yeon gets there in time to cut the nooses). He’s becoming more and more volatile. It also appears that he’s not content submitting to being The Imoogi’s lesser half, which makes him even more dangerous, and has us all the more excited to see what else is up his sleeve.
So many plans and counter plans
This week, Yeon assembles a Hunt Imoogi Team (hereafter “HIT”), consisting of three foxes and three humans, including Rang (Kim Bum) but sans Yoo Ri (Kim Yong Ji), who traded herself over to Terry so he would save Rang. Their first plan is to use the Sin Slayer, a powerful artifact that can slay the unslayable, ie. the soul. And thus HIT locks Ji Ah and Yeon in a room together, where Ji Ah will call forth The Imoogi and Yeon will slay it.
Except this is another one of Yeon’s famous fake-outs. So while it appears that the Jimoogi (the Imoogi-possessed-Ji Ah. Get it? Heh!) has gotten the upper hand on Yeon by grabbing the Sin Slayer and attacking first, nothing actually happens because the “Sin Slayer” is merely a counterfeit item brought from the flea market. The goal of this very elaborate plan is instead to find out how The Imoogi jumps from body to body, and as revealed by the Jimoogi, it is via ingesting a piece of it’s scale.
And really, there’s so many plans and counter plans happening in this episode, it’s hard to predict how things are going to go down next week. With so many people having their own agendas, and being smart people (and foxes and snakes) at that, it’s like an intense game of chess where there’s a checkmate happening every move. Case in point: Yeon and Rang. Yeon’s mission is to save Ji Ah while also stopping The Imoogi once and for all. And while Rang is on HIT, his mission is to get Yoo Ri back and to make sure Yeon lives.
Which means the mission goals for Yeon and Rang are unfortunately contradicting, because if Rang were to get his way, Jimoogi (and thus Ji Ah) would have to die. Rang understands that Yeon would never forgive him for killing Ji Ah, but in the end Yeon’s life matters more to him. And possibly in hopes to lessen his guilt, Rang springs the Butler from prison and has him do the dirty work of offing Ji Ah instead.
Who else guffawed at how childish Lee Rang is!
Yeon and Terry too have their own dealings. In order to have Terry stop obsessing over him and Ji Ah, Yeon proposes a deal. He offers Terry the position of Gatekeeper of Samdo River, a deity-like position that surpasses even that of a mountain spirit. This will allow him to be revered and regarded, things that Terry has always craved. Terry is naturally suspicious of this proposition, but Yeon tells him that this is the only way for them all to make it out alive. Otherwise, with Granny’s interference, they would all end up in the Underworld. And thus, Terry agrees to Yeon’s plan.
But then we hear their respective voiceovers. Yeon’s voiceover reveals that this is another one of his traps (he plans on swallowing the scale thus binding with The Imoogi, then jumping into the Sando River), while Terry’s voiceover acknowledges that it’s a trap, but he plans on turning it against Yeon instead. It’s going to be an explosive matchup next week, and with so many different players on the board, everything could just easily blow up in their faces. Let’s just hope the face that gets blown up isn’t one of the
good-looking good ones.
Start watching “Tale of the Nine-Tailed“:
Did you expect the team leader Choi reveal? Or the Sin Slayer twist? And what are your body-count predictions for the finale? Let us know your thoughts and comments below!
Currently watching: “Tale of the Nine-Tailed,” “The Spies Who Loved Me”
All-time favorite: “Kill Me Heal Me,” “Defendant,” “Hotel Del Luna”
Looking forward to: “City Couple’s Way of Love” starring Ji Chang Wook and Kim Ji Won