At 109 episodes, the drama tends to get draggy despite a good start. Recent dramas with similar story lines of two women pitched against each other have become popular: Cruel Temptation妻子的诱惑 and Love and Obsession amongst them.
I stuck to this drama because of the likeable characters – yes, even the villain mother-in-law is extremely likeable, the realistic dialogues (they speak out the viewers’ minds) as well as the handsome lead.
Min Jung has been married to dermatologist Seung Chang for 6 years but am still childless. She gets bullied by her mother-in-law (MIL) for this reason. One day, her MIL gets her to cook a special dish for a guest, and she is devastated that the dish is meant for her husband’s pregnant mistress, You Lan. Sang Chang forces Min Jung for a divorce. Min Jung tries to kill herself in a river but is saved by Moo Hyuk.
After the divorce, Min Jung discovers that she is pregnant. Her own mother wants her to abort the child but she refuses. She gives birth to a boy. In the mean time, You Lan marries Seung Chang but miscarries.
Six years pass. Min Jung is now a bra designer working. She is seconded to a bra manufacturer and meets Moo Hyuk again. Moo Hyuk is attracted to her and pursues her. In the same building, Seung Chang and You Lan run a clinic. You Lan learns that her sister is attracted to Moo Hyuk and that unknown to many, Moo Hyuk is actually the son of the boss who owns the building and the underwear factory. She sets up ways to get her sister and Moo Hyuk together and is bewildered when she learns that Moo Hyuk is interested in Min Jung. She then tries to break up the couple.
Seung Chang and family later learn that Min Jung has a child and threatens to sue Min Jung for custody of the child. Thanks to Moo Hyuk, they are unsuccessful.
You Lan then learns that she is infertile due to the illegal abortions she had. More horrifying is that her ex-boyfriend has now turned up and is extorting money from her. When the truth is revealed, Seung Chang wants to divorce her.
After much heartache, Min Jung finally marries Moo Hyuk and discovers that she is pregnant but is also suffering from cervical cancer. She chooses to forgo treatment in order to have the child. Would she survive?
I had thought the series was ending soon when Min Jung and Moo Hyuk finally get married, after suffering through You Lan’s plot to break them up, Moo Hyuk’s father disapproval of his son marrying a divorcee with a child, and then Moo Hyuk’s uncle’s disapproval, and Min Jung’s car accident while trying to save Moo Hyuk. Instead, there is still this cancer scare. Then I realise for the series to end with the wedding would be too abrupt.
At the final episodes, Min Jung tells Moo Hyuk that she is grateful for many things, amongst them grateful that her cancer is a slow-growing cervical kind. Moo Hyuk interrupts her and asks, shouldn’t she be more grateful if she doesn’t have cancer? Min Jung tells him, without the cancer, she wouldn’t know how to be grateful for what she has, and would take life for granted.
And that’s how this drama wants to convey the message: All things happens for a reason and we have to bravely accept the situation and still live with compassions for those who has done us harm. The villains in the drama lose everything, but gain this wisdom that bad deeds are not rewarded. I call them villians – Seung Chang, You Lan and the MIL. But they all have their good sides too. Seung Chang is a filial son and the way he treats his parents, you’d wish he is your son. The MIL is a loving wife and mother and puts her family above everything. Even You Lan, self-centred and wicked, is a loving mother figure to her younger sister.
Like real life, we are faced with dilemmas and heartaches. It’s how we react to them that makes this drama so watchable.