Netflix’s South Korean thriller series ‘Mask Girl’ is based on the Naver webtoon of the same name by Mae-mi and Hee-se, which was published between 2015 and 2018. The plot follows Kim Mo-mi, who has aspired to become a celebrity since she was a child. However, her insecurities about her looks lead her to become a popular masked performer in the new media. After two of her fans die, the police begin looking for him, and Mo-Mi vanishes without a trace after getting plastic surgery. But the mother of one of the victims relentlessly pursues her, seeking revenge. Even Mo-mi’s daughter, Mi-mo, isn’t exempt from her wrath. Here is everything you might want to know about the ending of ‘Mask Girl’ season 1. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Mask Girl Recap
The narrative encompasses a timespan of 34 years, from 1989 to 2023. It begins with a very young Mo-mi performing in front of an audience, perhaps for the first time in a talent show. In the voice-over, the adult Mo-mi explains that she wanted to be a celebrity when she grew up. But as she aged, it became apparent that she didn’t have the features that are traditionally regarded as beautiful. In a society as obsessed with looks and plastic surgery as South Korea, this implied that she would never become a celebrity, so, with almost no other choice, Mo-mi became an office worker, grinding herself away at a conventional job.
However, Mo-mi puts on a mask and her best clothes every night and dances in a video chatroom under the eponymous moniker. She is one of the most popular performers on the platform, and the adoration she receives there gets the sting out of the fact that she never became a celebrity. She has developed feelings for her boss, the very married and handsome Mr. Park, and dreams about him. When she spots Mr. Park with one of her conventionally beautiful co-workers, Mo-mi becomes jealous and spreads rumors about the affair in the office, leading to the woman’s transfer and Mr. Park leaving the company.
Although Mo-mi is the main protagonist of the series, she is not the only narrator. The perspective shifts in every episode, indicated by the episode titles. If the pilot revolves around Mo-mI, episode 2 follows Ju Oh-nam, a colleague who watches Japanese anime porn, has a sex doll, and is obsessed with Mo-mi. He figures out that she is the Mask Girl and begins stalking her, even sending her an email letting her know that he knows her secret.
Understandably, Mo-mi becomes spooked. She goes out with another follower of hers, Handsome Monk, who initially compliments her and takes her to a love hotel. When it becomes apparent that she will not sleep with him, he lets his real self out and attempts to rape her. She knocks him out and believes that she has killed him. Mo-mi contacts Oh-nam, who comes and persuades her to leave. As he prepares to take care of Handsome Monk, the latter regains consciousness, prompting a terrified Oh-nam to stab him multiple times. He goes to Mo-mi’s apartment, where he rapes her before she kills him. Prior to his death, Oh-nam discovers that Mo-mi has gotten plastic surgery.
Episode 3 focuses on Oh-nam’s mother, Kim Kyung-ja. Not long after the marriage, her husband left her for another woman. Kyung-ja brought up her son by herself, despite extreme poverty. When she discovers that her only son has been killed, this devout Christian devotes every waking moment of her life to revenge. She learns how to use a computer, and with the help of yet another follower of the Mask Girl, she tracks down who she believes is Mo-mi after surgery. However, this girl turns out to be Kim Chun-ae, a girl who is also a victim of male violence and underwent plastic surgery. When Kyung-ja captures Chun-ae and is about to kill her, the latter claims that she knows the woman Kyung-ja is looking for, adding that she and Mo-mi are bitter enemies at their workplace. In reality, they are close friends. Mo-mi helps Chun-ae kill her abusive boyfriend before they try to run away together. Kyung-ja catches up with them, and in the following incident, Chun-ae is killed, and Kyung-ja apparently dies as well.
In 2011, the authorities finally catch up with the Mask Girl and send her to jail, but not before she is able to hand her daughter Mi-mo to her own mother. Mi-mo grows up to be a problematic young girl. No matter wherever she and grandmother are, people seem to find out that she is the daughter of the Mask Girl. She often ends up blaming one of her peers and resorting to violence. This leads to her suspension from schools, forcing her and her grandmother to move time and again. Episode 5 focuses on Mi-mo and her friendship with another young girl, Ye-chun, who lies that she belongs to an abusive family to become her friend. Meanwhile, Mo-mi attacks hardened criminals in jail to force them to leave her alone.
One day, an unknown older woman shows up at the prison and reveals that she is Kyung-ja. Even though Mo-mi pushed Kyung-ja’s car into a large water body with her inside, she survived and got out. She subsequently got plastic surgery to make herself look different. Even after she learned that Mo-mi has gone to jail, her desire for revenge didn’t go away, but she shifted its focus to Mi-mo, not knowing that the young girl is her granddaughter. In the season finale, dedicated to the perspective of both Mi-mo and Mo-mi, the mother escapes from captivity and races against time to save her daughter.
Mask Girl Ending: Is Mo-mi Dead?
Yes, Mo-mi is dead at the end of ‘Mask Girl.’ She leaves the prison premise after promising to donate one of her kidneys to the daughter of the inmate who effectively runs the prison. Once at the hospital, she escapes from her guards and makes her way to the remote cabin where Kyung-ja is keeping Mi-mo bound underground. Meanwhile, Mo-mi’s mother and Ye-chun realize something is wrong with Mi-mo and try to find her. Mo-mi and her mother have their first cordial conversation in years, and both relay what they know to each other.
Mo-mi’s mother contacts the police, who get to the cabin first but have to leave after the news of Mo-mi’s escape starts to spread. Mo-mi’s mother and Ye-chun reach the cabin after that. While the two grandmothers of Mi-mo struggle against each other, Ye-chun looks for her friend. She finds her but is unable to free her. This is when Mo-mi arrives, saves her mother from Kyung-ja, and reunites with her daughter. However, Kyung-ja regains consciousness, fatally stabs Mo-mi’s mother, and gets into a bitter fight with Mo-mi. In the end, the police return, Kyung-ja points her gun at Mi-mo, but Mo-mi steps into the path of the bullet. She dies in her daughter’s arms, and the police kill Kyung-ja. Afterward, Mi-mo’s temporary guardianship is granted to Ye-chun’s parents, and she finds peace for the first time in her young life.
Did Ye-chun Spread the Rumors about Mi-mo?
No, Ye-chun didn’t spread the rumors about the Mask Girl being Mi-mo’s mother at her school. It was always Kyung-ja, whom Mi-mo has known as the tteokbokki grandmother. Obsessed with the idea of revenge, Kyung-ja knew that Mo-mi was beyond her reach while she was in prison, so she targeted her daughter. She set up a shop near Mi-mo’s school and befriended the young girl. As Mi-mo’s relationship with her maternal grandmother was far from perfect, the young girl desperately craving love became an easy victim of Kyung-ja’s manipulation.
It was Kyung-ja who spread the rumor at Mi-mo’s first school. After Mi-mo beat up her best friend, believing her to be responsible, she was suspended, and she and her grandmother had to relocate. Kyung-ja convinced her to remain in touch, and at every school that the young girl joined, Kyung-ja spread the news about her mother. The same thing happens at the school where Ye-chun meets Mi-mo. Ye-chun does lie about her family, claiming they were abusive when they loving and wonderful, but she isn’t the one who is behind the rumors.
Does Kim Kyung-ja Find out That She is Mi-mo’s Grandmother?
After accusing Ye-chun of spreading rumors about her, Mi-mo moves in with Kyung-ja, believing her to be the only well-wisher she has left in the world. During the time they spend together, Kyung-ja’s resolve for revenge cracks every time the young girl calls her grandmother. Mi-mo also bakes biscuits for Kyung-ja’s birthday and tells her that she will earn money so she can help with the finances of the house. Kyung-ja never finds out that she is Ni-mo’s biological grandmother. Perhaps, this is ultimately a good thing. While Mi-mo would have been likely spared the horror and violence she endured in Kyung-ja’s hands, she would have likely come to know that her mother became pregnant with her after a rape, and that would have also traumatized her.
Read More: Where is Netflix’s Mask Girl Filmed?