The character of Mask Girl is rather interesting because, contrary to our expectations, she never lacked self-esteem. She dreamed of being a celebrity, but when she learned that the world wouldn’t allow it, she still didn’t let go of it. Much like Kyung Ja in Mask Girl, Kim Mo Mi had tremendous perseverance. If her face was the obstacle, she would cover that and then go after what she wanted, which she did through online streaming services, and she also ended up finding huge success with it.
When we said that Mo Mi was not underconfident, we meant that she still believed that she had a right to all the good things that were denied to her due to the prejudice of the world, as in, she had not internalized the hate of the world for her looks. However, Mo Mi was still aware of how things worked against her. She may not have been loud and asserted her presence the way her friend in the office did, but Mo Mi never considered herself unworthy. How could she when the adulation for her talent was so evident through her followers on the streaming service? Basically, Mo Mi knew that there was a corner of the world where she was accepted. As for the rest of it, we suppose she had already been saving for her plastic surgery. Forgive us if we phrase it badly, but Mo Mi had to know about the popularity of plastic surgery and its prevalence. Please keep in mind that Mo Mi was not after good looks; she was after the fame and love that came with them, and there is a thin line of difference between these two.
We suppose that Mo Mi granted herself the occasional fantasy, like with Mr. Park. We absolutely don’t believe that Mo Mi ever felt like she had a chance with Mr. Park. We also don’t think that what she had was anything more than a slight crush. When Mo Mi wondered why he did not tell his wife that he was in the car with her, we are sure it was a self-aware flight of fancy she was indulging in and not an actual misunderstanding that he had feelings for her. When she was devastated to find out about his affair with A Reum, it was because of her frustration at how her life never seemed to bring her any love or affection of any kind. It was the rejection of the fantasy that annoyed her, and as self-aware as she was of her feelings, she could not take the higher road and ended up spreading the rumor all over the office. Something we would like to point out is that Mo Mi never hid from the world the way Oh Nam did. She kept looking for her pockets of validation and love and never thought less of herself. That is why she agreed to go on a date with one of her followers—to just move on from the whole mess.
As we said before, Mo Mi never internalized the hate others had for her, which is why she stood her ground when Handsome Monk tried to cross her boundaries. When he insulted her and insinuated that her looks meant that she did not deserve choices in life, she was angry because she knew that this should not be the case. A lot happened after, but mostly, Mo Mi was just tired of living a life defined by how she looked. She wanted the freedom to just be herself, and plastic surgery was the first step to getting it. When she killed Oh Nam, it was because he was another man who thought that he could tell her how to be and what to do because her looks did not deserve better. When he tried to force himself on her, that was the final straw that broke down Mo Mi’s sanity, and she did what she could have done in that situation, not only as a way of justice but also to gain back some control over her life and over people thinking they could walk all over her.
When Mo Mi starts a new life with the identity of A Reum, we believe that she has finally started healing from the traumas of her past. She got the applause she wanted, doors opened for her, and she had some friends who were not just acquaintances. Maybe that is why she told Chun Ae that no matter what her child was going to look like, she would compliment them on their looks so that they didn’t grow up feeling rejected the way Mo Mi did with her mother. We absolutely never understood why Mo Mi’s mother was so cold to her. She definitely took care of her daughter the same way she did for her granddaughter, Mi Mo, but she seemed incapable of expressing affection or love. It was to the point that neither Mo Mi nor Mi Mo could trust her to stand by them in times of need, even though she was clearly willing to do so. If only Mo Mi knew that she wasn’t hated by her own mother, she might have made different choices.
But what is most interesting to us is Mo Mi’s prison plotline. The fight with the prison’s resident queen bee was completely unnecessary and one that Mo Mi had picked. She hadn’t done it because she believed in being a good person but because she did not want anyone to be able to lord over her. She had enough of that in her pre-plastic surgery days.
But what surprised us the most was Mo Mi’s transformation after she read the Bible. Similar to others, we believed that she was faking her new-found spirituality but it was all true. We tried to understand what could have sparked this change, and we can only come to one conclusion, which is that the words of the Bible impacted her. After all, the book says that the Lord accepts all and that he has designed everyone and everything with love and care and for a higher purpose so that there is beauty in everything, whether mortal eyes can see it or not. We bet that nobody had ever said such words to Mo Mi in Mask Girl. She may have finally found the acceptance and love that she craved so much within the pages of the book, and that ended up turning her to the side of God. Thankfully, she found it in a much more meaningful way with her daughter right before she died, so she knows that God is not the only one to love her. Kim Mo Mi would have been quite the head-turning celebrity if only the world had given her a chance. At least she found some peace and happiness in her final moments.