We finally have the outcome of the Team Tang Jun vs Team Xiao Jie. And like I said, it gets ugly.
The night before the presentation, Tang Jun is by the Bund again, looking over at the Pearl of the Orient. He thinks back to when he was there with Xiao Jie before. (His first failed attempt at confession) Xiao Jie is drinking by the Bund as well, and she texts another message of support. Our boy grins like a fool when he sees it, and replies her with a photo of the night view.
Xiao Jie sees it and realises that he’s nearby. She searches for him along the Bund, and they finally meet. They just smile at each other and wish the other well for the presentation tomorrow? Is that it? I thought they’d give us more than just them looking at each other, because I sense what’s coming will be waaaay worse than this.
On the presentation day, Team Xiao Jie gets to go up first. Just minutes before the meeting begins, Xiao Jie receives a text saying that the Italian brand is onboard. Their confidence receives a major boost and Xiao Jie starts off with their presentation of SSP week. The faces of Team Tang Jun start to fall when they realise that their idea is exactly the same.
Xiao Jie proceeds with the full explanation of the SOP and execution strategy of their proposal, and she fields questions from Chu Chu’s father and Tang Min professionally. Tang Min is pleased to know that they’ve secured the deal with the Italian brand’s flagship store.
Tang Jun’s expression hardens throughout, and right after he brings up his own SSP Week title screen, Tang Min intercepts his presentation, saying that she need not see anymore if his team’s idea is the same. Chu Chu’s father tries to persuade her to hear him out, but Tang Min’s read the two proposals and decides that Team Xiao Jie has the more complete plan compared to Team Tang Jun.
After the meeting, Xiao Jie storms into the meeting room and calls her team in. She questions them about the similarity of their ideas, and Xue Shao admits sheepishly that he overheard the other team’s discussion at lunch and plagiarised the idea. He defends his actions, because he did it for the team and for the company. He wants to stay in Huang Hai – he’s brilliant enough to be hired to a higher position in other large companies, but it may not be the same for the other team members such as Su Li. Xiao Jie may want to protect Tang Jun and stand up for him, but he has his own people to protect too. Cue meaningful glance at Su Li.
This puts Xiao Jie in a dilemma as well – to protect her own team, or to try and save Tang Jun’s hide with the truth. Su Li points out that despite their ideas being the same, they still worked hard to draft the proposal, and it was more well-rounded than Team Tang Jun. It’s hard to pick a side when it concerns everyone’s livelihoods, to be honest, but the corporate world is brutal.
Xue Shao at least gets something out it, when Su Li recognises what he’s done for her. Awww. I suppose from her point of view, he is her hero.
Team Tang Jun frets about their fate, which is uncertain because Tang Min said she will reconsider their outcome. Tang Jun brings them drinks and thanks them for their efforts. He vows to protects them, no matter what. They are all grateful, and Su Su gives him a talisman for his and his mother’s health. Love these sweet little moments.
Tang Min gathers Xiao Jie, Tang Jun and Chu Chu at her office. She announces that Tang Jun’s team will all be fired, and Tang Jun will be reassigned to assist Xiao Jie with the execution of her proposal. Tang Jun disagrees with her decision, because she was going to reconsider the outcome. Tang Min reaffirms that she was going to reconsider it, not necessarily change it.
Xiao Jie comes out with the truth – Xue Shao plagiarised Team Tang Jun’s idea. Tang Min points out that it’s useless her saying that now, the decision has been made. Unless she wants Tang Min to fire Team Xiao Jie instead of Team Tang Jun. Xiao Jie realises that there is no win-win situation in this, but she cannot betray her own team. She apologises to Tang Jun.
Tang Min reasons that Team Tang Jun deserves to get fired, since they could not even keep their plans confidential. As team manager, Tang Jun steps up to take responsibility for their actions. Tang Min gives him two choices – one, his five team members are fired; two, Tang Jun and his team all get fired. That’s not really much of a choice now, is it? Tang Jun vows to stay loyal to his team. (Meaning he takes the boot, too.) Stupid boy.
Xiao Jie runs after him and tries to talk some sense into him. She asks him to reconsider – does he really want to leave Huang Hai out of some misguided sense of loyalty? If it were her, wouldn’t she do the same? Xiao Jie tells him she wouldn’t. If her team member really messed up, she wouldn’t take the blame for it. Tang Jun coldly says that she’s changed. Are we going down the ‘are you still Lin Xiao Jie’ path again?
Xiao Jie points out that she cannot afford to lose her job, unlike him, she wasn’t born into a rich family. She has to earn money to pay rent and feed herself, so survival is her main priority. He puts too much personal feelings into his work, which makes him less rational.
He is mad that she’s lecturing him like his sister does (well, they both have a valid point), and cuts her off. He tells her that he’s already made his choice, and it is Xiao Jie who is letting her feelings get in the way.
Meanwhile, Chu Chu is whining about Tang Jun losing his job to her father. He’s pretty relaxed about it, because ultimately Tang Jun will inherit the company. Him leaving now is probably temporary, but when CEO Mummy wakes up, things will change. Plus, if anything goes wrong with the anniversary event, it’s Tang Min and Xiao Jie’s heads on the chopping block. Chu Chu doesn’t see any point in that, and just annoys us with her bratty whining.
Tang Jun’s team lament their fate and begs him for help. He promises to give them good recommendations to help them get other jobs, and he gets that favour from Chu Chu. He apologises to the team for letting them down. I’m just amazed that none of them realised that they did do something wrong by letting their plans slip – is there no accountability at all at a lower level? I’m so annoyed with their whining and lack of professionalism. Yes, I sympathise that they have difficult lives and they have mouths to feed, but that should mean that you work with more responsibility and accountability. That’s the problem with people nowadays – they expect to go to work, mess around and still get paid.
I think Tang Jun is holding too much responsibility for his team. He promises that he will stand with them till the end, which is all he could do. No boy, what you could do is stay and take over the company and hire them back. That’s a bloody better promise. He’s too immature to figure that out. He gets Chu Chu to help his team out with finding other jobs, and Chu Chu has another go at Team Xiao Jie. She whines about how he has to leave the company.
We’ll see more in the next episode, but I’m quite satisfied with this episode. It finally gave us some sort of confrontation between Tang Jun and Xiao Jie, which I have been waiting to see. All that tension and build-up shouldn’t have been for nothing. I think he has lots of growing up to do, whereas Xiao Jie’s thinking is already more mature and she is able to make him grow and be a better person. If only he’ll let himself. Because all that hanging out with Chu Chu will only relegate his brain to primary school standard, which wouldn’t really cut it if you want to take over Huang Hai.