Three Dads, One Mom is… not a good show.
You know how sometimes you might be watching a drama, say, and something happens in the latter part of the drama that is exactly like what happened earlier in the drama? For instance, the mother of the rich hero tries to buy off her son’s poor girlfriend, or a misunderstanding causes a rift between two people. Or two people arrive at the same crowded venue looking for each other and just barely miss each other as they walk by, oblivious to the other. These are just examples of overused and super-trite occurrences that I may put up with once in a drama, but when they appear again later, it’s irritating because clearly they are out of ideas.
Anyway, it’s like that for Three Dads, only instead of occasionally, it’s every single episode, and the repetition is in triplicate form. It’s bad enough for a contrivance to push along your plot, but when that contrivance continually happens THREE TIMES in a row, it’s aggravating. There’s very little story going on (who needs story when you can just repeat stuff three times?).
Plus Eugene is really starting to get annoying — it’s partly her, and it’s partly her stupid character. (How they squandered such talents in their supporting cast I will never know.) So given that the two problematic roles are the lead female and the lead male…
I considered following along and recapping the series anyway just for the fun of it, but I can just see the initial humor of the situation degenerating into frustration. There’s a fine line between “so bad it’s fun(ny)” and “so bad I want to shoot something.”
SONG OF THE DAY
As One – “Zza Zza La!” from their latest “Sponge Remake 2008” single.
[ Download ]
EPISODE 4 RECAP
The guys rush Na Young to the hospital, who’s wailing so loudly all my sympathy for the pregnant condition goes flying out the window. Seriously, woman. Maybe Eugene’s so pretty she’s never actually had to endure pain, and this is her best approximation of a woman in suffering. It’s remarkably similar to what I’d imagine is her approximation of a squealing stuck pig.
In any case, it’s a false alarm! The doctor identifies it as false labor; she’s still a few days off. The guys try to accept this with grace, but now that the initial panic has worn off, they’re acutely aware of all the inconveniences they’ve suffered. The car battery is dead because Su Hyun accidentally left the lights on in his hurry; they have to push the car home; they’ve stayed up all night and are exhausted.
Na Young feels so bad that days later, she refrains from calling the guys when she goes into labor again, worrying that it’s false labor again. Never mind that by this time she’s five days overdue. Because I know when I’m carrying a watermelon-sized person in my body that’s trying to force its way out, the first thing I think of is the embarrassment I’d feel if all this excruciating pain were false labor. False labor = still real pain.
When the pain becomes too great to endure, does Na Young ask the guys to take her to the hospital? Of course not. She takes a taxi.
By this time she’s wailing like a stuck pig again and the taxi driver rushes her to the first hospital he comes across — which happens to be celebrating its grand opening. Na Young is its first labor patient, and the doctors are just as excited and worried as Na Young.
This time, the guys are all in the midst of Very Important Life Tasks — Su Hyun is just about to make a great impression on the rich CEO dude (with the classy art-gallery daughter); Kwang Hee is busy macking on a girl; and Kyung Tae has just captured a criminal.
They all rush to the hospital; Kyung Tae is first to arrive.
Next is Kwang Hee, who is likewise assumed to be the father (the nurse is told belatedly that Kyung Tae isn’t the one), and he’s rushed into the room accordingly (and literally craps his pants. Lovely). Last to arrive is Su Hyun, who is once again assumed to be the father and (yep) rushed into delivery.
After more excessive wailing, baby Ha Sun is finally born, and the guys get one look at that baby face and are won over. They wonder what would happen if the baby ends up resembling one of them too closely, and that line of reasoning is hurriedly cut short when Na Young appears. They remind themselves they must take care with their words.
The guys finish getting the nursery ready (grumbling about all the work, and suggesting that their best bet is to marry off Na Young to get rid of their obligation — an argument that angers Kyung Tae), and make a trip to Sung Min’s grave on the day Na Young is to be released from the hospital. Unfortunately, each guy happens to be conveniently (or inconveniently, I suppose) called to work, leaving Na Young waiting at the hospital for a ride that doesn’t come. Finally she makes her own way home; Kwang Hee rushes to meet her, sorry that he was so late, and tries to help around the house. But Na Young is starting to find the guys’ constant presence obtrusive, and requests some time alone.
For instance, Kyung Tae visits intending on preparing a meal for her, but takes an early leave when Na Young starts feeling breast pains and asks for privacy. At home, the guys look up cures for breast pain — but the recommended treatments are hot towels and hand massages, which they can’t exactly offer.
Kwang Hee calls his mother for advice and urges her to come to Seoul and help him; naturally she finds his questions about breast pains and babies alarming. She jumps to the conclusion that Kwang Hee knocked someone up and starts yelling at him; and rather than simply tell her the truth (that would be too easy), Kwang Hee just tells her to forget it, since they’ll ask Kyung Tae’s mom instead. So Kwang Hee’s mom assumes that Kyung Tae is the one who got someone pregnant, and smugly lets Kyung Tae’s mom freak out. Thus the two moms arrive in Seoul, agitated and jumping to conclusions.
Only when they arrive in Seoul does Kyung Tae clarify the situation, and since the two women are already there, they go to help Na Young with her problem (more stuck-pig squealing ensues).
Kwang Hee’s mom (the nicely dressed one) coos at the baby and remarks that she looks just like Kwang Hee did at that age, which unnerves both guys.
At that point, Na Young gets a visit from her troublesome dad, with whom she has a difficult (and distant) relationship. Kyung Tae’s mom (the more casually dressed one) practically has to drag Kwang Hee’s mom away, seeing that the woman is flirting with the stranger. Kwang Hee’s mom calls her son and is gratified to hear that Na Young’s father is single.
At Na Young’s continued coldness, her father asks if she’s upset about the money her husband had lent her, which grabs her attention. What money? Seeing that she’s unaware, her dad brushes it aside, and just then they’re visited by a bunch of angry people who lost money because of her father. He insists that his daughter tell them she knows nothing about it, then sneaks out from the balcony.
The angry people demand their money back and show Na Young a signed statement stamped by Sung Min ensuring that he would take over responsibility for her father’s debts. So now they’re her debts.
Unable to draw a loan, Na Young attempts to find work, but having a baby means nobody is willing to hire her. She’s resting on a bench in dejected spirits when her friend Jumi pulls up in a van, fretting that they’re going for a job interview and are missing one person. OF COURSE THEY ARE.
So Na Young leaps at the chance and drops off Ha Sun with Kwang Hee. She’s awfully unceremonious and not really that appreciative for someone who felt uncomfortable that the guys were being so helpful. And he’s awfully reluctant and whiny for someone who’d just vowed to do what he could to raise the kid right. Character inconsistency overload!
In any case, Na Young rocks her interview, although she has to pretend to be single and childless (Jumi strongly cautions her to keep her story straight, because they won’t even take married women). And because her waistline has grown recently, her jacket button, which has been forced closed, can’t take the strain and finally pops off as she’s leaving — hitting someone in the cheek and plopping into his coffee cup.
She sees this but is too embarrassed to react, so she walks away trying to pretend that nothing happened. But of course the guy looks at her with a glimmer of interest, calls her over, and hands her button back to her. Who wants to bet he’s the CEO of the company she just interviewed with? Extra points if he’s also a chaebol!
I don’t think Three Dads is ALL bad. It’s simply throwaway programming. The kind you watch, enjoying the eye candy, and forget about the minute it’s over. Half the time I find it amusing, even if it’s all very obvious humor and silly plotlines. The other half of the time, it’s mildly annoying because it’s too obvious and too silly. (And Na Young is really heading into idiotic territory.) Unfortunately, I have a feeling that half-fun-half-not ratio is going to tilt heavily in favor of the latter. I’ll see how this week’s episodes are, but if I drop the drama, I don’t think I’d miss it. I’d barely remember it as it is.