I competed at National Showcase last weekend and skated to “I Love Play Rehearsal” from the musical “Be More Chill” for my light entertainment routine! I hope you enjoy! I had so much fun performing this!!
So, there was a lot going on this chapter, wasn’t there? Between the non-stabbing, the consequential continuation of the fight, Sangwoo being arrested, Bum being dragged along with him, and Sangwoo putting Seungbae on the spot, it was a rollercoaster of a chapter.
We all know (I hope) that Sangwoo is very intelligent. We also know that (to some extent) he cares for Bum. Which makes me hesitant to say exactly whether Sangwoo is using his heart or his brain this chapter (ignore the cliche).
After Sangwoo has been ‘brought down’ by Seungbae, we get to see this jewel. Now I’d argue that he’s genuinely thinking of Bum here with no ulterior motive. He looks so defeated. He’s just woken up from being tased. He’s thinking about what’s most important in that moment- Bum. Exactly what he’s thinking is more obscure. Is he disappointed in Bum, sad, angry, confused? We have one word and with it a million possibilities.
Here’s my take on it. Not to sound too, well, romantic, but Sangwoo’s face here looks so broken. I look at him here, and I see a man who thinks he’s lost everything (or is about to) and is desperately clinging to one thing above all else. His eyebrows are raised towards his nose, slanting down towards his ears. This could just be due to the angle we’re looking at him from, but it could also be indicative of pain. Of course, he was just tased so that could have something to do with it, but I think the pain he’s feeling the most at this moment is emotional. He looks so done.
Cut to the station:
This is the intelligent ‘can think his way out of anything’ Sangwoo at work here. Look at him. He’s watching. Gathering information, and assessing the situation. If he ever needed his smarts, it’s now. And this is where things get complicated, in my opinion. Sangwoo is trying to find a way out of an impossible situation. And then Bum arrives.
And Sangwoo freaks out.
He gets angry. He starts yelling. He moves with speed. He reacts in such a way that everyone literally freezes.
Look carefully at Seungbae’s face here because I’ll come back to it in a second. But first, Sangwoo doesn’t stop just because everyone else does. He uses Bum to his advantage. This is where I start to find things interesting. Sangwoo is too smart to not know what he is doing here. By showing he cares for his ‘victim’ he is blowing huge holes in Seungbae’s theory. And Sangwoo knows this. I mean look:
‘What happened to your face, Bum?’ As if he doesn’t already know. Sangwoo is looking at Bum and seeing an opportunity to get off scot-free. It is obvious that that is what he is doing. (Quick side-note because Bum’s face kills me here). But is that the ONLY reason he’s doing it? Is this Sangwoo freaking out, but intelligently? Is he showing genuine concern for Bum here, or just using him? Is he trying to save himself, or save them both? What is he feeling for Bum at this moment, considering everything that’s happened beforehand? The answers to these questions are a huge indication of Sangwoo’s motives, but sadly, I don’t know what they are.
I mean, on the one hand, he’s making Seungbae’s theory look more and more ridiculous with every passing moment (and doesn’t Seungbae just know it):
Look at his face here. He is so out of his depth. Sangwoo has completely outsmarted him, and his mind is reeling. Why? Because Sangwoo has used emotions to his advantage. In Seungbae’s mind, Sangwoo is this psycho, emotionless, ‘evil’ man. He doesn’t care about anyone but himself. Bum is his victim and nothing else. Yet, here is a man who seems to care about Bum to the point of desperation. It’s a clever ploy, one that even shocks Seungbae. He looks so surprised to see that Sangwoo might care about someone. That he might actually have emotions. He’s stunned into silence, and every second he stays that way is a second more that Sangwoo can use to his advantage. Seungbae seems to have made a rookie mistake. Prior to this point, I’m pretty sure he’s only thought so far as getting Sangwoo to the station, and figured if he could do that he’d ‘win’. He doesn’t seem to realize that the fight between them didn’t end with Sangwoo’s arrest. And, boy that’s not going to end well for him.
On the other hand, we get this Sangwoo:
Look at his face in the second panel. I know that ‘reading Sangwoo’ is an art-form that no one’s mastered, but I’m going to go out on a limb here and say this is genuine emotion in his face. So, is Sangwoo using his brain, his heart or some unholy alliance of the two? I would argue for the latter. He’s emotional, but he’s not stupid. He’s using his genuine feelings and concern for Bum, amping them up, and using them to fool everyone. As far as I can remember, Sangwoo hasn’t done that before. He’s been either cold and calculating, or emotional to an unhealthy degree. We know he’s good at faking earnestness, which is what makes me uncertain about this whole outburst.
I mean, once Bum is next to him, he reverts back to calculating Sangwoo:
Look at that scheming face
And then he goes for the final blow:
Oh, KO, Suengbae! You are outta here! This is seriously the most brilliant plan Sangwoo could have come up with. Not only has he completely discredited Seungbae’s theory, but he’s distracted the rest of the police from it, too. In fact, he’s put his own involvement in the CEO’s daughter’s murder (that’s a mouthful) so far out of everyone’s mind, he doesn’t even register. He cares, he’s polite, he apologises, he bows. No way he can be a murderer, right? Ignore the fact that he came at ‘Bum’s ex’ with a knife. Everyone does that when confronted with their SO’s ex, right?
I’ve included this panel because I have a sneaky suspicion that Sangwoo’s face is showing some evidence of this victory on it. I mean, he knows he’s all but ‘proved’ himself innocent, and condemned Seungbae. Now Bum isn’t smart enough to figure all this out, which probably explains how confused he looks. But I think Sangwoo may be hiding a smile here.
I mean think about it. The police questioning Sangwoo is one thing, but Bum would’ve gotten them both arrested the second he was alone in an interrogation room. Lies are not that boy’s strong point.
So, maybe you’re wondering what the point of all this was? Did I really say anything that somebody hasn’t already? Probably not, but I’m curious. I’m curious as to how people interpreted this scene. Do you think it was all a ploy? Do you think Sangwoo was genuinely overly-emotional? Or do you think he was emotional, but using those to his advantage? Or something completely different? Personally, I think Sangwoo was feeling pretty raw this chapter (and the last). I think he was genuinely something for Bum this chapter, I just can’t figure out what. Is he concerned? Is he angry that someone’s touching his Bum? Scared, jealous, something else? I really can’t tell. All I can say is that I think he was emotional, even if I can’t figure out what emotion that is. I think he used that emotion to his advantage, and used Bum as a get-out-of-jail-free card to keep them both out of the reach of the police. Whether he cares about Bum in this moment or not is another question, but he certainly wanted the police to never doubt that.
So, the tl;dr of this long, rambly post is, I think the side of Sangwoo we see here was his calculating one. I think the outburst in the prison was somewhat emotional, but was mainly a ploy on Sangwoo’s part. I’d say he was 8/10ths intelligence and 2/10ths emotion at the station. I think the emotion was genuine, but not. I can’t explain it. It’s almost as if Sangwoo is saying what he genuinely thinks he feels, covering up what he actually feels with semi-real concern. So he is concerned about Bum, but it’s a different concern to what he’s showing? He’s concerned he’ll lose him, but not concerned about him being hurt? Sangwoo, you are near impossible to figure out.
Please give me some hope for Olicity on Arrow! — Marcos
It sounds like Felicity and Oliver are definitely on the road to recovery this year. “We put them on a very specific trajectory at the end of season 5,” EP Marc Guggenheim tells me. “It would be very schizophrenic for us to suddenly take them off that trajectory.” But Guggenheim also teases this tidbit: “There is not a single romantic kiss between any two characters in the season premiere.” So be patient?
Spoiler Room: Scoop on Arrow, Once Upon a Time, Scandal and more (08/17/2017)