Madame Antoine episode 14 recap

Side dish: After having suffered through all the games and shenanigans of the last 13 episodes, we have finally arrived at the big show. You can treat this episode like the Super Bowl of the series, and celebrate by making the 50-Ingredient Super Bowl Nachos.


Episode Recap

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Madame Antoine 14.3

Both Seung Chan (Jinwoon) and Ji Ho (Lee Joo Hyung) admit to Soo Hyun (Sung Joon) that they told Hye Rim (Han Ye Seul) about his actual experiment on her. Seung Chan is not sorry about undermining his brother’s research, and advises Soo Hyun to beg Hye Rim for forgiveness. Soo Hyun goes looking for Hye Rim, but finds out that she is holed up in her apartment.

Yoo Rim (Hwang Seung Eon) makes porridge for the first time in her life, but discovers that she is unable to wake Hye Rim up to feed it to her. Soo Hyun shows up at the door, and offers to check in on Hye Rim, but Yoo Rim angrily refuses his help.

The next morning, Hye Rim continues to sleep as Yoo Rim departs for work. The sun goes down and Hye Rim finally wakes up. She is alarmed to realize that she slept for two days, then remembers the reason for her unnaturally long sleep, and starts crying.

Madame Antoine 14.4

Soo Hyun is relieved to see Hye Rim back in the café, but she acts indifferent towards him. When he arrives at his office, a worried Seung Chan alerts him to Mi Ran’s (Jang Mi Hee) continued absence. The brothers decide to visit Mi Ran’s apartment, but she answer neither the door nor the phone. It turns out that Mi Ran has already departed from Seoul for an indefinite amount of time.

Soo Hyun reveals to Seung Chan that Mi Ran is dying from cancer. He suspects that her bucket list included walking on a Jeju Island beach with Seung Chan. Seung Chan appears perturbed by this revelation.

Soo Hyun announces to Hye Rim that he plans to investigate the Chairman’s (Byun Hee Bong) surroundings, and asks if she will help, since it is for the benefit of the Chairman. Hye Rim agrees to provide assistance, however, she chooses to take the bus rather than ride in Soo Hyun’s car or drive the car he gave her.

Madame Antoine 14.5

While Soo Hyun explores the Chairman’s home, Hye Rim meets with the Chairman’s secretary, Lee, who makes it clear that he will not divulge any confidential information. Hye Rim unnerves him by tapping into his fear of ghosts, and finds out that the Chairman’s son committed suicide while attending a boarding school against his will, then the Chairman’s wife descended into alcoholism and also committed suicide. As for the Chairman’s younger sister, she died in a car accident after being forced by the Chairman to marry a man who was unfaithful to her. Even Secretary Lee must admit that the Chairman appears to be liable for all three deaths.

Soo Hyun can do nothing for the Chairman until he willingly submits to counselling. He provides Hye Rim with photos of objects in the Chairman’s home to refer to when she meets with the Chairman.

Just as Hye Rim is about to leave, Soo Hyun attempts to convince her that his feelings for her were genuine, even as he was experimenting on her. Hye Rim can barely contain her rage as she calls his entire courtship a lie. When Soo Hyun loudly insists that not everything was a lie, Hye Rim asks why he proceeded with the experiment after promising that he had ceased operations. Hye Rim had always hoped that Soo Hyun would independently choose her over his experiment, and confess his misdeeds. Hye Rim breaks down as she asks how he could request the third task after she had sent him the video message. She concludes that he never loved her, and leaves.

Madame Antoine 14.1

Ji Ho tackles the next task, assigned to him by Yoo Rim, of sitting in a sauna for 12 hours. After failing to reach Ji Ho, Yoo Rim rushes to the sauna to stop him. She is trying to describe Ji Ho to a sauna employee when they are told that a man has passed out in the sauna. Yoo Rim rushes heedlessly into the men’s sauna and meets up with Ji Ho as he is being carried out by other patrons. Ji Ho announces that Yoo Rim now has an ending for the documentary that she was filming about him. He declares his love for her then passes out.

Seung Chan shares Mi Ran’s cancer diagnosis with Hye Rim, and speculates that Mi Ran might have returned to her hometown. Hye Rim advises Seung Chan not to track Mi Ran down out of pity. When Seung Chan says he wants Mi Ran to be a friend, a mentor and a soulmate, Hye Rim encourages him to go find Mi Ran.

Madame Antoine 14.6

The Chairman has agreed to receive counselling from both Soo Hyun and Hye Rim. Hye Rim would prefer that they meet with the Chairman separately, but Soo Hyun points out that they need to work together. Hye Rim does not protest when Soo Hyun directs her to come to his office shortly before the Chairman’s appointment.

As usual, the Chairman is dismissive of his OCD, and becomes defensive when his dead family members are brought up. Soo Hyun bluntly tells the Chairman that he is suffering from guilt about the death of his family members, and from fear of driving his daughter, Yeon Woo to an early grave. The Chairman insists that he feels no guilt nor grief about the deaths. Hye Rim, who has served as a silent witness up to this point, announces that she spoke with his family in her dreams. Using the items that Soo Hyun had photographed in the Chairman’s home as clues, Hye Rim prompts him to remember the special moments with his family. The Chairman finally acknowledges his guilt while Soo Hyun and Hye Rim reassure him that the deaths were not his fault.

Madame Antoine 14.7

Seung Chan purchases plane tickets to Jeju Island, and arrives at Mi Ran’s family home. Mi Ran lets Seung Chan in after he threatens to sleep on her doorstep. He cheerfully greets her as if nothing is amiss, and presents her with a gift of ramen and onigiri, which Mi Ran hesitantly accepts.

The Chairman visits Yeon Woo’s hospital room with Hye Rim, and she directs him to be honest about his feelings. The Chairman tells his unconscious daughter that he takes responsibility for the deaths of her mother, brother and aunt, though he could not admit it until now for fear of self-destructing from the guilt. He sobs his apology to Yeon Woo for barring her from marrying, and gives her permission to do as she pleases. Yeon Woo suddenly wakes up and recognizes him, though she is now able to perceive how old and lonely he is. She apologizes for leaving him as they huddle together for a good cry.

Madame Antoine 14.8

After dinner, Seung Chan suggests playing Go Stop, and when Mi Ran admits that she has never played, Seung Chan proposes wagering with real money. Though she initially loses $11, Mi Ran quickly gets the hang of the card game, and Seung Chan finds himself owing Mi Ran almost $5000. Mi Ran reassures Seung Chan that he can work his way through his debt, starting with a cup of tea. By the time Seung Chan returns with the tea, Mi Ran has passed out on the couch. He sits down beside the couch and stoically watches her sleep.

Yeon Hui, Soo Hyun’s biological mother, visits him outside of his office hours, but he accommodates her, because it seems urgent. Yeon Hui gives him the scarf that he had helped picked out as a gift for her son. Soo Hyun is initially confused, then slowly realizes that the woman is his mother. She apologizes as she confirms her identity, explaining that she wanted to take him with her, but she had lost custody. Soo Hyun tries desperately to make sense of the situation then, unable to cope, he walks out of the office.

Madame Antoine 14.9

Soo Hyun directs Ji Ho to bring his certificate of familial relations along with Yeon Hui’s file to his home. He assesses the documents and finds that they appear to support Yeon Hui’s claim. He attempts to compose himself and is about to arrange another meeting with his mother when he is interrupted by the arrival of his former classmate, Clare.

Soo Hyun belatedly remembers that he had a work meeting with Clare, and gets down to business. Clare confesses that her reasons for finding him were not strictly professional; she wishes to reconcile and try again. However, when Soo Hyun sees Clare off, it would appear that he has turned her down as they wistfully hold hands before pulling apart.

Hye Rim returns to the café, and is irritated by the sight of Clare. She approaches her and offers to read her fortune. Hye Rim does her usual shtick of speaking French, but rather than gibberish, she specifically asks about Clare’s relationship with Soo Hyun. To Hye Rim’s horror, Clare understands French. Clare freely admits to having dated Soo Hyun, and even knows Seung Chan – both claims later confirmed by Seung Chan. Hye Rim is outraged that Soo Hyun lied about never having loved anyone before her, and contemplates hindering Clare and Soo Hyun’s expected reconciliation. 

Madame Antoine 14.10

Soo Hyun is desperately trying to convince himself that his experiment was not a failure when he receives a call from Hye Rim proposing that they go on a date at noon the next day. Soo Hyun seems numb with disbelief as he agrees to meet up.

The next day, Hye Rim primps herself up then offers Soo Hyun a ride in the car he purchased for her. They go to a bookstore where Soo Hyun admits that he can’t believe that she has forgiven him. He hesitantly asks why, and Hye Rim claims to feel sympathy for his difficult situation. She pointedly buys a copy of Cinderella.

Madame Antoine 14.11

Hye Rim takes Soo Hyun to the college theatre where she used to perform. He asks her to do a scene from “Romeo and Juliet” and she alters the lines to accommodate Soo Hyun’s name and their situation. Soo Hyun is fooled when Hye Rim collapses after feigning the swallowing of poison. Hye Rim asks if she is a good actress, and gives Soo Hyun a sly smile.

Yoo Rim is tending to an ailing Ji Ho, and reprimanding him for actually following her careless directives. Ji Ho is just happy to have her by his side, and be her sole documentary subject. When Ji Ho continues to suffer from chills, Yoo Rim climbs into bed to help warm him up, and soon, they are heating things up with kisses under the covers (YES!).

Madame Antoine 14.2

Over an open fire, Hye Rim tells Soo Hyun that she loves him. Soo Hyun is in the middle of expressing his new found belief in love, when Yoo Rim glances at her watch, and sees that it is midnight. She abruptly announces that she lied to him today, and whips the copy of Cinderella at his lap. She reminds him that what he suffered for half a day is what she went through for four months.

Soo Hyun looks devastated as Hye Rim returns the car he bought for her along with all his gifts in the trunk. She announces that she will be at a friend’s fortune telling café until she works out her feelings. As Hye Rim prepares to go, Soo Hyun is reminded of his mother leaving him. He silently calls himself the problem that must be eradicated as he watches Hye Rim walk away. 

Madame Antoine 14.12

Comments

This was a very satisfying episode. Not only did episode 14 offer a good cry or two, but it also resolved the secondary story lines, and cut right to the chase with the lead couple.

First, let’s review the secondary characters. It has been amusing to watch Ji Ho float in and out of scenes with the sheep head towel wrap on his head. When Yoo Rim horrified the men in the sauna by frantically searching for Ji Ho while shielding her eyes, it was definitely in keeping with the tone of their relationship. I have to applaud Yoo Rim and Ji Ho for being so ready to kiss each other, as any young couple would. Sadly, they are showing more believable sexual chemistry than the lead couple.

Seung Chan demonstrates personal growth as he puts his own feelings of discomfort aside to reach out to Mi Ran. I am glad that the writers did not force a romantic angle, because the relationship has taken on a air of sweet melancholy as Seung Chan acts like his usual self while being fully aware of Mi Ran’s ailing health.

Finally, even the Chairman’s guilt-driven OCD and his relationship with his daughter were resolved in cathartic fashion. A case could be made that the Chairman was, indeed, responsible for destroying his family, but the important thing is that he has decided to ease up on his authoritarian approach to his remaining family member.

Only Hye Rim and Soo Hyun continue to struggle through betrayals of trust. Yet, I loved the scene in which Hye Rim was straight with Soo Hyun about how hurt she was, what she had hoped he would do, and how he betrayed her trust. The flood of tears and even her cruel act of revenge towards the end of the episode were all justified in the aftermath of this honesty. If only this scene had happened weeks ago, it would have saved us from having to suffer through Hye Rim’s cowardly mind games, and Soo Hyun’s waffling between love and science. As this episode demonstrates, honest communication can still provide plenty of drama and entertainment.
Madame Antoine 14.14

Madame Antoine 14.15


Madame Antoine (마담 앙트완)

Madame Antoine

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5 Comments

  • While I totally sympathize with Soo Hyun about all the pain and insecurities he suffered growing up and how that has skewed his view on women, the show is not making him suffer enough because of Hye Rim. He should have to fear that he has lost her forever and suffer, not only for Hye Rim, but for anyone else that he experimented so callously on. He needs to experience exactly what his unwilling lab rats did in equal measure (he is somewhat sad but accepting). The show doesn’t have enough epidodes left to dish out the amount of suffering he needs before his ultimate redemption.

    Also, I do like the show despite all I said but I am disappointed in The Chairman’s storyline. While it makes sense in real world ordinary sense, I was hoping for something more exciting or dark with him and that weird daughter of his.

    Thanks for recapping this, Noonas.

  • I agree. And I get the sense that I’m supposed to feel bad for Hye Rim, but I just don’t. I think that when she “forgave” Soo Hyun because her sister listed his qualifications, it killed any sympathy that I had for her heartbreak. The relationship between the main characters feels paper-thin, inauthentic, and lacking chemistry.

  • Exactly! She basically proved Soo Hyun right that women don’t experience teal love but love gor security and materialism.

    I hope that’s not the message we’ll be left with (cause I’ll be pissed that I wasted my time watching this).

    • Shin Hyun-Bin portrayed Clare. FYI – I got that info from AsianWiki.com. What I love about this site is the actors appear as they do on the show – hairstyle, costume, scars, etc. DramaWiki includes more country’s (i.e., if the actor you’re looking up made a movie in China or Japan, AsianWiki may not have it listed) but the actor’s picture on DramaWiki is how they look in real life. If I’m looking up an unknown/newbie actor, I may not be able to recognize them from any of the other numerous people with smaller roles in a drama/saegeuk. But if the image is taken directly from the show I’m watching, that makes it easier. Especially when I first started watching and I couldn’t tell the difference between So Ji Sub and Cha Seung-Won (and now I can’t believe I used to mix them up because they look nothing alike! )

      I found out this actress’ name my searching for “Madame Antoine” on AsianWiki. Her picture is not shown under the show because she’s not one of the main characters but you can click on her name-link to see her real life picture.

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