Madam Cutie on Duty episode 1 recap

Side dish: Wagyu beef is a luxury, but it probably still tastes better cooked. How about Soy-marinated Wagyu with coriander relish? That sounds a lot more delicious than food poisoning.

Episode Recap

After camping out overnight in a mall, Apple (Priscilla Wong) and her friends charge into a retail store for amazing bargains. They wade into a battlefield of shoppers with a strategy, but the entire endeavour descends into chaos. Apple catches sight of herself in the mirror, and screams in horror at how domestic she has become.

Madam Cutie on Duty 1.1

Six months earlier, Apple was considerably more glamourous. Easily mistaken for a celebrity, Apple is actually a cop, though one who wears a different outfit every day. Still, Apple proves to be adept, capable of finding a dead body hidden in a scrap yard using only a fluffy white dog, and a knowledge of perfume.

Later that night, Apple attends her parents’ 30th anniversary celebration. Guests notice that Apple looks conspicuously more attractive, and whispers of plastic surgery circulate. Later, the rich crowd is aghast at Apple’s chosen profession, as they watch news footage of her hunting for the dead body.

Madam Cutie on Duty 1.2

It appears that the rumours of facial reconstruction may be true. Apple has a nightmare about the injury she suffered as a teenager. She desperately clutches her face and stares into a mirror when she wakes up.

Two men arrive at a seedy love motel. It is the younger man’s first time so his upset stomach sends running to the toilet. The pimp arrives in the interim, and offers up a nervous housewife to the older man. After money has been exchanged, the john reveals police ID. The pimp escapes as the undercover cop struggles with the panicked housewife/hooker.

Madam Cutie on Duty 1.3

At that moment, Apple and her team descend on the love motel. She is in the process of arresting the undercover cop, when his partner comes running from the toilet, offering their police IDs. Apple discovers that the angry, senior cop’s name is Law Tai Shu (Edwin Siu), and realizes that he was her high school crush. Apple flashes back to the heartbreak of overhearing Tai Shu callously reject her, and she vows vengeance.

Like Tai Shu, his father turns out to also have a strong sense of justice, regularly intervening when someone is being bullied. Father and son also both run screaming when they come face to face with an unattractive woman.

Madam Cutie on Duty 1.4

While on stakeout, Tai Shu is again abandoned by his weak-stomached partner. Tai Shu spots the perp and is tailing him when he runs into Apple who blows his cover. Tai Shu and Apple give chase, but the perp is hit by a minivan, and winds up in a coma. Tai Shu’s boss is livid at the loss of a lead, while Tai Shu and Apple play the blame game.

The police cordon off the apartment of the comatose criminal. Though the neighbours are curious, they are unable to provide the police with any information. Among the neighbours are the three women who charged the retail store with Apple at the beginning of this episode.  They speculate that their neighbour will stay in a vegetative state, because he seems like a bit player in a drama (haha).

Madam Cutie on Duty 1.6

In cooperation with Tai Shu’s district, Apple’s boss agrees to have a pair of his officers go undercover in order to find out if the comatose criminal’s neighbours did business with him. Apple promptly volunteers for the housewife role after finding out that Detective Ying, the senior colleague she has been flirting with, will play the husband.

Detective Ying, whose first name turns out to be Valentino (!), and Apple are getting flirty over dinner when they find out that the last available sweetheart dinner set has already been ordered by the next table. Of course, the other table turns out to be Tai Shu and his girlfriend, Fong. After Valentino and Fong are conveniently called away by work, Tai Shu and Apple are left to fight over the sweetheart dinner set. He makes cracks about her money, while she calls him trashy.

Madam Cutie on Duty 1.7

The waitress coaxes Tai Shu and Apple into sharing the dinner set. When they are asked how they want their Wagyu beef cooked, the two engage in a bidding war, with each upping the rawness of their steak. Presented with completely raw steaks, they call each other’s bluff, and both end up at the local medical clinic, bickering all the way to the toilet.

Apple and Valentino appear to be such a foregone conclusion that Apple’s colleagues are all betting that it will take one day for Apple and Valentino to sleep with each other. The sudden appearance of Valentino with his leg in a cast shatters this rosy future. Fortunately, they have a Plan B; Tai Shu reports for duty, and he and Apple instantly shoot lasers from their eyes at each other.


After watching so many Korean dramas, the differences in a Hong Kong drama jump out at you. The dialogue appears to be a lot more offhand, and the comedy more indelicate, though these are not necessarily bad things. The only part that offended me was the insensitive attitude of Apple and her colleagues while searching, and then finding, a dead body. The way they acted, they could conceivably have been searching for someone’s lost wallet, as opposed to someone’s family member or friend. Come to think of it, I didn’t like the running away from an ugly woman stunt either.

Otherwise, I enjoyed the comedy of “Madam Cutie on Duty” a lot. The sweetheart dinner between Apple and Tai Shu was the best. Here are some screen caps to relive the moment.

Madam Cutie on Duty 1.9

Madam Cutie on Duty 1.10

Madam Cutie on Duty 1.11

Madam Cutie on Duty 1.12

Madam Cutie on Duty 1.13

Madam Cutie on Duty (師奶MADAM)


1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20 || series review

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