Madame Antoine episode 15 recap

Side dish: During her brief stay in Daejeon, Hye Rim was probably working so hard that she never had a chance to try the local signature dish, dotorimuk (aka acorn jelly). Don’t work like a slave in Daejeon; follow this recipe from Aeri’s Kitchen, instead.

Episode Recap

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Madame Antoine 15.5

Ji Ho (Lee Joo Hyung) wakes up feeling all better thanks to Yoo Rim (Hwang Seung Eon) warming him up in bed. They hear the front door, and realizing that it is Soo Hyun (Sung Joon), panic. As Yoo Rim is making her escape, she runs into Soo Hyun. To their surprise, Soo Hyun is indifferent towards her being in his home after midnight.

Soo Hyun finds soju in the fridge and starts drinking the pain away. By the time Ji Ho returns home, Soo Hyun is passed out on the floor of the kitchen. A concerned Ji Ho carries his boss to bed.

Hye Rim (Han Ye Seul) gets invited to dinner with the Chairman (Byun Hee Bong). To her dismay, Soo Hyun is present when she arrives. The Chairman presents information about the man who would like to marry Yeon Woo, his daughter. He asks Hye Rim and Soo Hyun to give their opinion of him. Soo Hyun initially rejects the idea that he could give any assessment of the man based on facts and photo alone. However, after Hye Rim gives a full personality rundown, Soo Hyun feels the need to dispute everything she says, and call her a charlatan. An amused Chairman accepts both of their assessments. When the Chairman offers Hye Rim the chance to meet with Yeon Woo’s suitor, she announces that she will be leaving to help out at a friend’s café.

Madame Antoine 15.6

Soo Hyun is trying to relax with classical music and tea when Ji Ho calls to alert him to Hye Rim’s imminent departure. Ji Ho then tells Hye Rim and Yoo Rim that Soo Hyun is on his way, but Hye Rim is not about to wait around for his arrival. Hye Rim buys her ticket for Daejeon and is boarding the bus when she pauses at the bottom step before proceeding. Soo Hyun arrives just after the bus to Daejeon has departed.

Mi Ran (Jang Mi Hee) is giving Seung Chan (Jinwoon) a tour of the elementary school she attended until her move to Seoul in grade 5. Mi Ran spots a piano and offers to play for Seung Chan, not revealing that she took a crash course in playing the piano just for him. As Mi Ran is playing Bach, Seung Chan remembers sharing the song with Mi Ran and expressing a desire to hear a woman play it. When he hesitantly asks if this is the same song, Mi Ran confirms that it is, and admits that she learned for him. She apologizes for being attracted to him, and Seung Chan lightens the mood by playing “Chopsticks” with her.

Madame Antoine 15.7

In Daejeon, Hye Rim finds herself overworked by her friend, and relegated to dating other divorcés. She looks longingly at a photo of happier times with Soo Hyun. Soo Hyun is doing the same when he receives a text message from his biological mother, Yeon Hui. She begs for the chance to meet him one more time, but he just deletes the message.

Since Soo Hyun is neither eating nor sleeping, Ji Ho contacts Seung Chan to ask for help. Meanwhile, Seung Chan surprises Mi Ran by taking her to a beach on Jeju Island in order to help check off an item on her bucket list. He asks her what else is on her list, and all her desires involve travelling abroad. Seung Chan cheerfully points out that she must return to Seoul with him to fulfill her bucket list. Mi Ran is initially adverse to leaving Jeju Island until Seung Chan tells her that his brother needs her.

Yoo Rim takes advantage of a shoot in Daejeon to visit Hye Rim with a case of beer in hand. While they enjoy the beer, Yoo Rim reveals that Soo Hyun is suffering back in Seoul. Hye Rim is pleased with this news. After a few more cans of beer, Hye Rim attempts to drunk call Soo Hyun, while Yoo Rim holds her back.

Madame Antoine 15.8

Mi Ran’s return to Soo Hyun’s office appears to cheer him up. When Mi Ran asks about his break up with Hye Rim and his meeting with his mother, Soo Hyun acts indifferent to both events. However, Mi Ran can see that he is burying his feelings under logic. Soo Hyun tightly claims that everything is under control.

Looking for love that won’t abandon him, Soo Hyun buys himself a dog, and names it Hye Rim. One night, Soo Hyun uses canine Hye Rim as an excuse to visit the real Hye Rim in Daejeon. Hye Rim is exasperated when Soo Hyun arrives at the café, and introduces her to her namesake.

Madame Antoine 15.9

Hye Rim notes that Soo Hyun is acting cool and collected, but there is a crack in the facade when he asks her to do a reading of him. Hye Rim bluntly calls the puppy a sad excuse for coming to see her, and accuses him of being as emotionally guarded as he ever was. Soo Hyun agrees with her assessment and asks what to do. Hye Rim reveals that she is going on a blind date to start a new life without him, and leaves him at his table. However, when Hye Rim returns to find Soo Hyun’s table empty, she is crestfallen. Alone in their respective homes, Hye Rim considers contacting Soo Hyun while Soo Hyun distracts himself by creating a new Phase 2 for his experiment.

While out with Ji Ho and Seung Chan, Yoo Rim finds out that her documentary on Ji Ho, hilariously titled Between Brilliance and Idiocy, has won high honours. Seung Chan immediately goes to fetch a cake. When he returns, he finds Yoo Rim and Ji Ho have already started the celebrations by making out in the middle of the restaurant.

Madame Antoine 15.1

Soo Hyun directs Ji Ho to find a test subject for the new experiment who is stranger to them. However, Ji Ho no longer believes Soo Hyun’s theory that women are incapable of love based on his relationship with Yoo Rim. Soo Hyun bitterly questions if Ji Ho and Yoo Rim will still be in love in three years when the hormones have run out.

Soo Hyun is texted by his mother, Yeon Hui who repeats her request to see him. He directs her to come to his office at 5pm. Soo Hyun gets right to the point and asks his mother why she divorced his father. She says the marriage was doomed from the beginning, because his father was controlling. Then, she hesitantly admits that she met another man, and this feeds into Soo Hyun’s misogynistic theory.

Madame Antoine 15.10

Soo Hyun is seething as he notes that Yeon Hui left him when she chose, came to see him when she wanted to, and is now going to leave again. Yeon Hui had hoped that as a psychologist, Soo Hyun would understand what she did. Soo Hyun laughs bitterly at the thought that being a psychologist would protect him emotionally, then reveals that being abandoned by her caused him to lose all memories of his childhood. However, he does remember that before she disappeared, Yeon Hui had yelled at him not to get ice cream on his clothes or else, she would never return. He has suffered pain from water drops on his hand ever since. Yeon Hui cries and apologizes, while Soo Hyun angrily storms out after ordering her to never return.

After overhearing Soo Hyun’s blowup with his mother, Mi Ran goes to visit Hye Rim. She expresses concern, because she had never seen Soo Hyun so upset before. Mi Ran reveals that she knew about Soo Hyun’s experiment on Hye Rim, and could not stop an experiment that essentially served as Soo Hyun’s defense mechanism. If Soo Hyun could prove that women cannot love then he could feel better about being abandoned by his mother. Hye Rim starts to feel guilty about abandoning Soo Hyun, and Mi Ran adds to it by claiming that Hye Rim made a mistake in identifying a flower that Soo Hyun gave her by the wrong colour, thereby throwing their love into doubt (WTF?).

Madame Antoine 15.2

Hye Rim attempts to point out that Soo Hyun had experimented on her and hurt her, too. However, Mi Ran insists that Soo Hyun’s feelings for her were genuine, but the experiment was very important to him, personally and professionally. Mi Ran implores Hye Rim to help Soo Hyun.

Soo Hyun continues to talk to canine Hye Rim while not eating nor sleeping. He goes for a walk while carrying the dog in his arms. By daybreak, he wanders onto a building rooftop after spotting a paper airplane flying down, then considers launching himself from the rooftop, too. Seung Chan spots Soo Hyun, and rushes to pull him away from the edge. Soo Hyun appears confused by the fuss and wanders off while Seung Chan looks worried.

Madame Antoine 15.3

Seung Chan reports Soo Hyun’s confused attempt at suicide to Hye Rim, triggered by his encounter with his mother, and that he has started a new experiment. Seung Chan pleads for Hye Rim’s intervention. Hye Rim considers Mi Ran’s explanation that Soo Hyun has been repeatedly abandoned by women, and decides to pack up and go save Soo Hyun even if it means hurting herself in the process.

Hye Rim finds the woman who will serve as the new test subject, and reveals the truth to her. After the woman beats a hasty retreat, Hye Rim meets with Soo Hyun in her place. She announces that she has sabotaged his experiment, and tries to play nice, but Soo Hyun is suspicious of another attempt to hurt him when his guard is down. However, Hye Rim announces that she is on a mission to revitalize him.

Madame Antoine 15.4

In phase one of her plan, Hye Rim feeds Soo Hyun, and forces him to join social media before calling it a day. Soo Hyun is muted in his response the entire time, but types his exultation at Hye Rim’s return on his new social media account.

Seung Chan takes Mi Ran to a night club to fulfill her wish to dance all night. Mi Ran pretends to be in her 30s to get by the bouncer, drinks beer straight from the bottle, then goes on the dance floor with Seung Chan.

Hye Rim is with Yoo Rim at the award ceremony for her documentary, but Ji Ho failed to show up. Suddenly, a drone holding a sign saying, “Follow me” appears, and Yoo Rim confidently does exactly that. They find Ji Ho standing with the controls, and when Hye Rim asks what he is up to, the drone turns around and reveals a proposal of marriage. Hye Rim is aghast when Ji Ho gets down onto one knee to reveal a diamond ring, and Yoo Rim readily accepts the ring. When Hye Rim attempts to object, she gets pushed aside by the couple.

Madame Antoine 15.11

Later, Hye Rim exerts her authority by having the couple kneel before her as she points out that they have been dating for two weeks. Love gibberish comes pouring out of Ji Ho’s mouth. Yoo Rim insists that while she and Ji Ho would be marrying young, they will not end up divorced like Hye Rim. Hye Rim responds by kicking her sister out of the house. Yoo Rim takes it all in stride, doing the math to figure out how long she and Ji Ho can survive on savings alone.

Hye Rim spots Soo Hyun’s ex-girlfriend, Clare waiting for him in her café. Clare is disconcertingly calm when Hye Rim informs her that she is dating Soo Hyun. Clare states that she has no intention of actively sabotaging the couple, but neither will she leave them alone. She is hoping that memories will rekindle her relationship with Soo Hyun.

Hye Rim goes to ask Soo Hyun about his feelings for Clare after his session with her. When she senses that he is not being straight with her, she coerces him to do her the favour of completing an exercise. Hye Rim directs Soo Hyun to look at a childhood photograph of himself with his family, and to try to reclaim his inner child. Though Soo Hyun is resistant, Hye Rim leaves him no choice, but to comply.

Madame Antoine 15.12

Seung Chan and Mi Ran’s viewing of a meteor shower is undermined by cloudy skies, and Seung Chan worries about this happening during their trip to Alaska to see the aurora borealis. Mi Ran is pleasantly surprised to hear that he will be joining her, and is about to discuss a date of departure when she has difficulty with her throat. Seung Chan entreats Mi Ran to get the surgery, because she might not live to complete her bucket list. Mi Ran curtly says she’ll deal with it and leaves, oblivious to Seung Chan’s offer of a ride home.

Hye Rim returns to Soo Hyun’s office to find that he has not completed the exercise. She asks about his recent meeting with his mother, then reveals that she once left her child alone all day to get away from her husband. She wants to make it clear that her mistake was not the result of a failure to love her child. Soo Hyun bristles at being lectured to, and dismisses Hye Rim as a mere fortune teller. She points out that he cannot resolve his issues with education and logic alone, and challenges the idea that he will be happy if his theory that women cannot love is proven true. Soo Hyun attacks her as a charlatan, and Hye Rim plows on with a promise to prove to him that true love exists.

Hye Rim presents Soo Hyun with flowers then identifies with as the colour that is associated with lasting love. She tells him that she loves him, and that she will not abandon him like his mother did.

Madame Antoine 15.13


Hye Rim went from vindictive scorned woman to martyr of love so quickly that I almost got whiplash. In the first half of the episode, she was still lashing out at Soo Hyun. Then, after Soo Hyun’s suicide scare and a pep talk from Mi Ran, she’s selflessly throwing herself into saving Soo Hyun while willingly taking abuse from him.

The worst part of Hye Rim’s change of mind was that it was brought about by the appalling advice of Mi Ran. I was flabbergasted by Mi Ran’s logic that because Soo Hyun’s experiment served as his emotional crutch, it trumped the emotional havoc he wreaked in the lives of his female test subjects. Mi Ran was dismissive of how hurt Hye Rim was being lied to repeated by Soo Hyun, and could not stop harping on about how Soo Hyun has been repeatedly abandoned by women. Well, if Soo Hyun wasn’t such a psychopathic asshole, then maybe, women wouldn’t abandon him. But, yes, let’s blame the women for Soo Hyun failing to receive love.

Yet, Soo Hyun has learned nothing in his repeat experiences of being abandoned, even by the the woman he supposedly loves, Hye Rim. He is still experimenting on female subjects to support his demented idea that women cannot love. Poor Hye Rim is left to do the heavy lifting by forgiving him in order to save him.

On the plus side, this was not a boring episode; in fact, it was action packed, hence the rather lengthy recap. Plus, the secondary couples are making up for how frustrating the lead couple is. I love how ready Ji Ho and Yoo Rim are to make out, given any opportunity. In contrast, the relationship between Seung Chan and Mi Ran is sad and sweet, without any threat of sensational drama despite Mi Ran’s inappropriate crush and failing health.

One more episode to go! Let’s hope “Madame Antoine” ends with an explosion of sexy time with Ji Ho and Yoo Rim, profuse crying prompted by Seung Chan and Mi Ran, and moral outrage about Soo Hyun and Hye Rim.

Madame Antoine (마담 앙트완)

Madame Antoine

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

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