Mask: Episode 1 Recap


The final Wednesday-Thursday drama to premiere this month arrived this week. Mask hit the ground running by taking over top position among its competitors. The show ticks all the boxes of a makjang melo. I’m not impressed yet but overall it did a nice job in introducing the players, adding a flavour of complexity. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that second episode will be better.


Episode 1: Happiness of Three Million won

A woman (Soo Ae) is driving an uncontrolled car with a man (whose face we can’t see). The car falls down a cliff and is hung on a rope. She frantically calls someone named lunatic on her phone. We see an unknown man telling her about on offer he made to her. She agrees to it but he says the condition for the plan to succeed is for her to die. She agrees and then sends a voice call to her father, mother and brother. The man calls her Byun Ji Sook. The car falls in the river down the cliff.

We open up to the funeral of Ji Sook, where in a voice-over she says that it is not bad to die as there won’t be any loan sharks or no nagging from boss. She can get money too. We see her family crying. Then she says that she will miss her mom’s food and then says that it all happened because she met that bastard two days ago.

Few days back.

We meet Choi Min Woo (Joo Ji Hoon), who is the heir of SJ Group. He is obsessed about cleanliness, even imagining all germs spreading from everyone. We can see that his dad is not happy with him. He meets Seo Eun Ha (again Soo Ae) and they are about to get married, but purely for business convenience. This is a contract marriage and she tells him that she loves someone and will continue meeting that guy after marriage. She adds that they won’t have any physical relation. He is equally uninterested in her.

Ji Sook works in a departmental store. Her coworker tells her that she saw a woman just like her but she was rich. Of course, Ji Sook doesn’t take it seriously. She is threatened by a loan shark from whom her dad took money. He warns her to give interest of 3 million won within 2 days.

She gets a message that there will be a high school reunion. She goes there in hopes of borrowing money but gets humiliated by her mean classmates. One of her classmates, a guy, sees all this and comes and takes her away from there. He was into her then and even now tries to make a move. But she makes it clear that she has no such intention. He then throws some money for her and tells her this is the reason she came anyway. She feels humiliated and drinks a lot.

She is lying on street when Min Woo sees her and thinks she is Eun ha and assumes that she is in this condition due to that man she loves. At first he tries to ignore but with the fear that everyone will disregard him for leaving his fiancée, he goes back and takes her to a hotel. She is totally drunk and mistakenly keeps her money inside one of the bathrobes, which Min Woo wears after taking bath as she vomited on his clothes. He leaves the place.

In the morning, she wakes up and rushes to her work place as she is late. Eun Ha is shopping there and reads something about doppelgänger that the one who sees the other first dies. She accidentally sees Ji Sook and both the ladies are shocked.

Ji Sook gets a call that her dad tried to commit suicide and is in hospital. She rushes there but he is out of danger. She asks mom if she has a twin but mom tells her that this is all nonsense. Her brother Ji Hyuk (Hoya) is planning to robe a bank for money but we can see that he doesn’t have the intention as he keeps on practising about it nervously but ultimately he gets a call from Ji Sook and doesn’t do anything.

Time to meet Min Woo’s family. He has an elder sister Mi Yun (Yoo In young) and her husband Suk Hoon (Yeon Jung Hoon) who lives with this family. Dad and step mom are also there. These people have a tense relationship with each other.

A servant tells Suk Hoon that she found money in Min Woo’s bathrobe.

Mi Yun is pissed off at the idea that everyone thinks she wants to take over the business to kick her brother out. It’s clear that everyone thinks Min Woo is not normal mentally. He meets a doctor and then when the latter asks about pills and all, he starts shouting like crazy that he is not crazy. There is something about his real mom that he thinks she was murdered, quite opposite to what everyone thinks (accident). It all happened when he was a kid.

Ji Sook can’t find the money and goes back to that hotel. While searching, she finds Min woo’s business card.

At night, Min Woo imagines that a body is floating on the swimming pool. It looks like he frequently has this thing.

Min Woo is having lunch with Eun Ha. He is surprised that she doesn’t remember that night. He even checks that wound she has on her knee, but of course it’s not there, as that was Ji Sook. Mi Yun comes there and tells her that no one wants her in this house. So we come to know that Eun Ha’s father is a prosecutor and Min Woo’s dad has several accusations against him and hence they are getting married for mutual benefit as she will get some shares too.

Mi Yun looses her mind when Eun Ha tells her that she has nothing to lose, but Mi yun’s dad  could go to jail. Then Suk Hoon takes her away. It looks like the man Eun Ha is in love with is Suk hoon as she stares at him with longing.

When Min Woo wants to discuss about marriage date, Eun Ha asks him if his mom will be coming to their marriage and also that she has heard that she is a kept woman. She tells him that her mom abandoned her long time back.

Inside, Mi Yun tells Suk hoon to never take anyone  else’s side in front of her. They hear a scream.

Outside, we see Eun ha lying on the pool, unconscious while Min Woo lies on the floor, looking very weak and not himself.


The first thing that came to mind after watching this episode was that it has a very depressing vibe. Maybe it will improve from here on as things will fall into place. If we see nuts and bolts, this is fairly an easy, simple story of a doppelgänger taking place of a rich woman under orders of some cunning man. But they have executed it in such a way that things look complicated. In the opening scene, I thought we are seeing the rich woman but then as the plot progressed, it was clear that she was Ji Sook, the hard-working, struggling poor girl. My gut feeling tells me that she fell down not to die but there is some elaborate plan there. I think most of the people in this universe are either evil or crazy, except of course our heroine Ji Sook. I think the drama will slowly open the layers about what are everybody’s intentions. Suk Hoon has not shown any bad side yet but I think we’ll soon see his real face.

This trope of a poor girl working to make ends meet and then being chased by a loan shark, has become quite tired. In fact the drama has lots of things that have been used several times in dramaland. But I’m glad that we quickly established everything in this hour and can look forward to what is in store. Min Woo and Eun Ha never had any emotional connection and I look forward to the love that will blossom after he gets married to Ji Sook. I’m all for marriage of convenience stories, as I’ve repeated this like a CD stuck in a music player. It will be fun to see his attitude when he’ll see the day and night difference between the woman he was marrying and the one he will see after marriage. I wonder if he pushed Eun Ha in that pool. I think maybe yes, after what she said about his mom and all his mental conditions are connected with his mother.

I’m happy to see Joo Ji Hoon back on my screen. I’m glad that some comic moments were thrown in and hopefully, we’ll not go darker all the way. You can get better with some upbeat air, Show.



15 thoughts on “Mask: Episode 1 Recap

  1. Timescout

    LOL! I just posted my first impressions and my take on Mask is sooo different. I’m definitely more amused than annoyed, as is my usual reaction to just about all makjangy melos. Definitely going to watch some more to see if I’m right or just imagining things. XD

    Mask certainly started with a bang but can they keep it up is another matter entirely. I can’t say I was all that impressed but rather surprised at the overall execution as it wasn’t what I was expecting.^^

    1. snow Post author

      I was expecting something like this…you know…where everyone and everything is crazy….haha…just read your take…I’m not amused but I’m willing to give it a try…

      1. hariaharia

        Ι had fun reading your post mostly because it’s the usual reaction to this writer’s work,lol!!
        First reaction on Secret: ” Boooo, another revenge drama where the underprivileged girl meets the cold chaebol who’s out to get her because she took the blame for her fiance’s hit-and-run and have been imprisoned…blah,blah,blah”. And then baaam…the actual drama got aired and JS took us by surprise. Not to mention HJE who gave a spectacular performance and my personal bias BSB – yes, I adore him no matter what role he’s in – who turned into a perfect evil villain ( a villan with a cause, lol).
        If Mask is anything close to this one, I guess we’ll read this post together and laugh at it in a couple of months, miss Snow *_*

        1. snow Post author

          Really Hariaharia! I’m happy to hear it as I want to watch Mask and enjoy it too…hahaha…now your comment has made me doubly excited about what this drama has in store…hope it doesn’t disappoint..
          Yet to see ep 2….I’ve seen BSB in only one show — Shining Inheritance and he played such a sweet role in it that I can’t imagine him playing a villain.

          1. hariaharia

            LOL…I was thinking BSB is the “usual” suspect for a perfect villain in kdramaland. I can count on the fingers (a few, tbh) of one hand the times BSB has been adorable and yet I find him soooo perfect! Biases work in mysterious ways, right?
            Back to Mask again! Let’s keep our fingers crossed this (formely known as our favorite) weird SBS won’t get insane and mess up a perfectly fine deranged script.
            I will never been convinced that KBS had not put its/their little finger in Secret. And it boomeranged big time!

          2. snow Post author

            It’s understandable….we love an actor…whether he plays good or bad characters.

            As for Mask: *crosses her fingers* 🙂

    2. Mitta

      Haha! I am so behind on my dramas. I love to read all the first impressions. Now I will head over to Timescout’s and read her perspectives 🙂 I think I will give this one a shot. Thanks for sharing!

      1. snow Post author

        LOL…even I love to read all first impressions…it’s a wonder if me and Timescout have same takes on a show 😉 Misaeng was the drama where we agreed to everything about it…hehe
        After ep 2, I can say that I liked it. It helped that I watched it with amusement about how clichéd or crazy it can get 🙂

  2. Pingback: MASK. SBS. | IKurate

  3. Blue

    Ohhh no way!!! If you’re doing a recap of this show then you really enjoy it, because it takes a lot of time 🙂 I think the first two episodes were SOLID!!! The first scene was crazy. I totally didn’t expected this, I thought it would be something less dark. I’m waiting for 3 to 4 episodes to write a first impression.

    I love marriages of convenience in dramas too, to see how the characters evolve. For some reason, I don’t think Min Woo is a bad dude so far. He doesn’t seem abusive (like grabbing a girl’s arm violently and pushing her in the car) he is actually completely abused by his family, and seems to be jaded and lacking major confidence. His relatives seem to treat him like a “joke”, not like a prince. I don’t think he pushed Eun Ha in the pool either…but we shall see 😀

    Don’t know if you’ve watched episode 2 as I type this, so I won’t spoil. Will follow your posts on Mask, woohooo I hope they can keep the drama’s pace as is. Love it so far ^^*

    1. snow Post author

      hahaha…I planned to recap it just for some experiment and fun. But if you look closely, it’s not a detailed recap (which I can NEVER do) and also less screencaps. It’s more like a summarised version. Funnily, I tend to recap a show when I enjoy it less because if I love it, I don’t want anything to come in between me and enjoying it. LOL. So I give it a go but after ep 2, I must say, I’m hooked! It’s so engaging and entertaining!

      I really feel bad for Min Woo…poor boy, surrounded by crazy people who are trying to make him crazy…can’t wait for Ji Sook to enter his gloomy life and fill it with love and peace.

      Yay that you like it too 🙂

      1. Blue

        Ohh so that’s how you choose recaps. Makes sense. But that means if you’re hooked we may not get recaps then?

        It’s definitely entertaining!!! Ji Sook is gonna protect this poor guy. Wooohooo! I have sooo many questions LOL!

        1. snow Post author

          Hahaha….well, I have plans to continue recapping as of now (as I have time to do so) but soon my college is starting and I have no idea if I’ll get enough time then.

      2. Blue

        Oh taking back what I said. There is an episode 2 recap. How are you gonna do snow?? Anyway you can “drop” recaps anytime if it you feel like fully enjoying it ^^

        1. snow Post author

          You’re so right! I can stop recapping anytime…but I really want to experiment this time…if I can maintain recaps (although summarised ones) for a longer time…let’s see how I can manage 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s