The Queen of SOP Episode 28

Evil scheme alert! Director Zeng contacts Zi Qi, who also addresses him as Uncle Zeng, to come to Huang Hai to take over Chu Chu’s job. All these rich people and their connections, tsk tsk. Zi Qi agrees to it, but knowing Director Zeng, it won’t be as simple as doing Chu Chu’s job. There has to be more to it.

Director Zeng then turns up at the Tang residence in a huff, demanding to see Tang Jun. Tang Min is shocked to hear about Chu Chu’s attempted suicide, but tries to calm him down first.

Tang Min offers to visit Chu Chu with Uncle, and asks Uncle Zhou to prepare some herbs to bring to her. Director Zeng huffs and puffs even more, and blames it all on Tang Jun and Xiao Jie. There’s no point in asking Tang Jun to visit Chu Chu, because she can’t see him in her current state anyway. Director Zeng asks that Tang Min keeps this from the other colleagues, and informs her that he’s already sourced a replacement project manager in place of Chu Chu. After all the fuss that he’s kicked up, Tang Min can only placate him by agreeing to it. Not that she’d suspect anything at this point anyway.

We are treated to cute OTP moments the next day, with Xiao Jie and Tang Jun sort of discussing work, but are really soaking up the joy of being able to show their affections in public. Their colleagues whisper among one another that Chu Chu must have taken time off work to avoid having to see this, and they also gush over our OTP’s cuteness.

Their cute moment is interrupted by a stern Tang Min, who calls them to her office. Like two kids being summoned to the principal’s office. She tells them about what happened to Chu Chu, which also shocks them. Tang Min says that it needs to be kept from the other colleagues. Tang Jun looks dazed, and his sister tells him to focus on work.

Xiao Jie comforts him a bit and tells him to visit Chu Chu, she will handle things at work in the meantime. Did Tang Min forget to tell them what Director Zeng said about visiting Chu Chu?

Meanwhile, the Board of DIrectors are discussing their next plan of action to bring down the Tang family. Director Zeng’s latest plan is to sabotage Tang Jun and Xiao Jie, as opposed to targeting Huang Hai. While the Tangs are busy handling their personal problems, they will stage the takeover of Huang Hai. Director Zeng smugly introduces his secret weapon – Zi Qi – to the other directors. I wonder if Zi Qi is knowingly going along with this plan.

Tang Jun and Xiao Jie arrive at Chu Chu’s house to visit her. Xiao Jie waits in the car while he goes in. This seems to be after the Board of Evil has left, because the living room is empty. Director Zeng is not too happy to see him. Tang Jun apologises to Director Zeng. The old man throws another dramatic hissy fit, but eventually allows Tang Jun to see her.

Chu Chu is understandably upset with Tang Jun, in her own bratty way. The choppy background music doesn’t help with the scene either, as it coasts into annoying whiny territory. Anyway, Chu Chu feels that him turning up just makes her look more stupid. In a nutshell, she does not accept his apology nor does she give him and Xiao Jie her blessing. Well, I wouldn’t expect any less.

Tang Jun just accepts everything sadly. And guiltily. Chu Chu drops a bombshell on him though – she was the one who planted the incriminating evidence of Xiao Jie’s alleged corruption and sent the black letters to the directors. Then she goes all crazy on Tang Jun. He tells her she thinks too much, but she screeeeeeches at him, saying that she will use her own way to make him remember her forever. It would sound creepy, except that it’s coming from her, who has next to zero credibility.

Xiao Jie asks after Chu Chu, but Tang Jun just says that there’s nothing much he can do for her. He asks Xiao Jie to hold his hand to give him strength. Awww. He’ll need it too, after that whole lot of up close shrieking.

Meanwhile, Zi Qi sits with Chu Chu and wonders aloud why she picked such a stupid method to keep Tang Jun (suicide). From their previous meeting during the VVIP event, his impression of her was that she was rather intelligent. When it comes to matters of the heart, Chu Chu admits that logic doesn’t always apply. (Exceptionally so when it comes to her anyway) She points out that he’s like her too, coming all the way to Shanghai to win Xiao Jie back. Except, that’s not half as stupid as suicide, isn’t it? There’s not giving up, and there’s stupid, see?

Zi Qi admits that he’s here for Xiao Jie, but disagrees that he’ll end up like Chu Chu, because at the end of the day, at least Xiao Jie once loved him. But to her, they’re still the same, not loved by the ones that they love. Zi Qi backtracks and agrees, but he repeats that he will never be stupid enough to take his own life in an attempt to prove his love for Xiao Jie. Chu Chu wants them to pay for what they’ve done to her, and Zi Qi just laments that being a loser in love has made them foolish and evil. Does that mean he’s on the plan to take down the Tang family too? Oh noes.

The next morning, Tang Min has Tang Jun and Xiao Jie in her office, telling them about her discussion with Zi Qi over the success of their joint effort for the Valentine’s Day project. Tang Jun is all, yawn, can we move on from talking about the annoying bugger now? Tang Min adorably chides him for being unprofessional in her big sister tone. Their adorable moment is interrupted by Zi Qi himself, as he is introduced to them by Director Zeng as the new project manager.

Director Zeng and Zi Qi are both looking smug. Tang Jun is annoyed, Xiao Jie tries not to look awkward, and Tang Min has her game face on. Zi Qi shakes Tang Jun’s hand and announces that he’s more excited to work with Xiao Jie, or in his words, he’s anticipating the sparks flying between them two. Tang Jun quickly pulls his hand away, haha. How childish.

At their meeting with the rest of the team, both Zi Qi and Tang Jun put across different concepts for the new phase of Huang Hai, with vastly different target markets. They snipe at each other’s idea a bit, until Xiao Jie stands up to play umpire. She points out the merits of each idea, and suggests that they incorporate the merits of both their concepts into the new phase. She then asks everyone to go out for dinner together, then cutely points and says that it’s Tang Jun’s treat. Zi Qi can only stew in jealousy.

Their colleagues revel in the gossip about the office romance/love triangle, even discussing ways to keep Zi Qi from interfering with our OTP. Awww, gotta love their loyalty.

While in the lift, Xiao Jie ‘calls’ Tang Jun, who is standing right next to her, to ask why he’s in a bad mood. Tang Jun is wary about Zi Qi’s appearance, also due to the fact that it was Director Zeng who brought him in. He asks for a kiss from Xiao Jie, and blocks the CCTV in the lift too. They kiss, but two seconds later the lift doors open, and Zi Qi steps in. Awwwwkward.

Meanwhile, Tang Min (who is again wearing her ridiculous earrings) gets a visit from the company accountant. The accountant informs her that someone’s used CEO Mummy’s identity to borrow a large amount of funds, and Huang Hai has been put down as the guarantor in the loan. Because there’s been some abnormalities in Huang Hai’s share prices lately, the bank is feeling antsy and thus is pressuring them. The accountant confirms that CEO Mummy’s seal was indeed used to authorise the loan. Tang Min discovers that the seal is missing from her office.

This obviously reeks of Director Zeng, especially after what he said about keeping them busy sorting out personal problems. It gets confirmed in the next scene, where the Board of Evil snigger at the turn of events. Chu Chu stole the seal while she was still working at Huang Hai, and now everyone will think that the Tang family is using Huang Hai to embezzle money. A convenient way to kick the Tangs out.

The news gets released to the media, and Huang Hai’s stocks plummet. Director Zeng gets interviewed on TV, where he expresses his shock and disappointment. Of course you’d want to slap him. Reporters and dissatisfied members of the public also gather in front of Tang residence, demanding for answers and their money back. Tang Min steps out to apologise to them, promising that she will get to the bottom of it. But people just keep shouting for her to give them their money back.

Tang Min and Tang Jun and Xiao Jie meet with the accountant again, who has analysed the situation. She found something strange with the board of directors, and that’s enough for Tang Min to know that Director Zeng is behind it. Oh thank god it won’t take them two more episodes to figure it out. While Tang Jun and Xiao Jie wonder why the directors would do that (duh), Tang Min is more interested in finding a solution. That’s why she’s the boss!

Her main priority is to pay off the debt to the bank to get them off their backs first. One of their options is to sell some of their assets, which is their house. Tang Jun agrees that would be the best bet, but Tang Min disagrees. They can’t sell off their home, it’s important to Mummy. She asks the accountant to try and source funds from other banks in the meantime, while she figures out other solutions.

Director Zeng barges into the meeting, boldly asking why Tang Min is still the acting CEO, with this scandal breaking out. Tang Jun stands up in rage. Director Zeng declares that the two of them are no longer fit to run Huang Hai. Is it worth it, for the sake of an outsider (Xiao Jie) to destroy Huang Hai? This scandal is just the first step, Director Zeng has more evil schemes up his sleeve. He wants the world to see how useless the Tang siblings are.

Tang Min returns to her office to find a large bouquet of roses. She finally answers the phone call that follows after each bouquet, and agrees to go out for dinner with the mysterious man on the phone. Thinking to their recent troubles, she agrees.

Xiao Jie is a bit disheartened after hearing Director Zeng’s outburst, but Tang Jun consoles her. He reminds her that they need to face this together, like they promised each other. Awww.

The Board of Evil convene again, and they celebrate yet another triumph, as some of the other main shareholders who have been CEO Mummy’s supporters have wavered due to the scandal. These supporters will not sell their Huang Hai shares to the Board of Evil, but they might trust in an outsider, someone like Zi Qi, who Director Zeng has sent to have dinner with them. If Zi Qi manages to buy over their shares, the Board of Evil will have the majority, and they can vote out Tang Min to appoint a new CEO. I’m counting on Zi Qi wavering and betraying the Board of Evil, but we’ll see.

***

When I said I sympathised a bit with Chu Chu’s character, she made me regret it immediately in this episode. I think it’s the way the character is directed, it’s so choppy and inconsistent. One second she is shouting, and in the next scene she is having bitter discussions with Zi Qi. Even the things she says doesn’t make sense, especially more so when she is all shrieky. I would have appreciated it more if she was written in a more melancholic way, but she can still be driven to act against Tang Jun. Shouty angry second female lead is too cliche, especially when we already know she is absolutely no threat to Xiao Jie.

I always thought Tang Min’s secret admirer was in fact the man she gave up for the sake of Huang Hai. But judging from her less than happy face when she answered the call and her thoughts while on the phone, that man is probably an unwanted suitor who could possibly bail them out.

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