We get a lot of flashbacks in this episode, and some past mysteries are solved.
Zi Yi is captured by the Yellow Gang, who terrorize her a bit. The boss crony (Jiang Shi Kai) treats her with respect, but in a slightly creepy way. But Qi Long comes in to mess things up, bringing with him a foreign police officer so that the Yellow Gang doesn’t pull any shenanigans. They release Zi Yi to keep the police off their tails.
A newspaper boy runs by Blue Moon and delivers to Zi Yi a prepaid paper with a letter inside. It’s from her father and explains what happened to the Purple Rain Forest restaurant and Mr. Wang’s role in it. Zi Yi decides that she wants to have her own power and be able to stand up against these kinds of people, and seeks out Chen Xun.
In 2016, Zhi Gang is determined to find some answers to what happened to his restaurant. His search takes him to Mr. Gao, one of the elders whom he befriended as “Qi Long” earlier. We see that he won Mr. Gao over by agreeing to build an Old Shanghai Street in the new commercial district they’re developing.
Mr. Gao shows them some film from his grandfather, who was a filmmaker. They happen to see some clips from a film his grandfather was working on, which also happens to be a film that Zi Yi was in and that Chen Xun directed. The day of that shoot, the studio tragically caught fire and everyone in there perished. Zhi Gang shakes his head, unable to accept that Zi Yi dies. But things take an even more tragic turn when the clip shows a man carrying a woman in the flames: it’s Zhi Gang carrying Zi Yi. He is going to die.
This episode does a good job of answering some questions about how Zi Yi’s family lost the Purple Rain Forest restaurant and how Zhi Gang magically got into the elders’ good graces. I like the pacing of the plot so far and how the mysteries don’t just build up on each other for a final reveal, but are gradually shown to us, with new questions introduced as well.
In any sort of time travel movie or show, an individual finding out about their future (particularly their death) is always a key moment. I recall something similar happening in Queen In-hyun’s Man, but I don’t really remember how it was resolved. Characters knowing their own deaths always beg the question of how much of this timeline is fixed and how much of it is fluid? Must Zhi Gang just deal with this shadow hanging over his head, or will we get a different sort of explanation–for example, at that moment he and Zi Yi teleport into 2016?
Only the future episodes will tell.