Episode 4 was a lot of fun. The entanglements of early-stage romance are often my favorite parts, and also often the funniest, and we get some of that going here with some significant developments on the romantic front, involving more than one couple.
SONG OF THE DAY
Bada – “Dilemma” [ Download ]
EPISODE 4 RECAP
Dong-chan steps in and punches Tae-yoon, who has angrily confronted Hae-na, and defends her — so what if she signed Tae-yoon’s statement and sent him gifts? Accusing her of liking him (Tae-yoon) is out of line. Dong-chan says, “I didn’t think you were that kind of guy. What a disappointment.”
As they leave, Dong-chan scolds Hae-na for coming here, particularly when she had assured him she wouldn’t see Tae-yoon anymore. Although Dong-chan defended her in front of Tae-yoon, he accuses her of liking Tae-yoon — which she denies, unconvincingly — and charges her with having no pride.
Hae-na doesn’t take kindly to his comments, which reinforce her own feelings of humiliation, so she stops this argument by kneeing him. She storms off, unaware that they are being spied upon by an unseen photographer.
At home, the servants anticipate a tantrum, but are surprised at her relatively calm entrance. They wonder why, but the reason becomes clear when Dong-chan comes limping in — she’s already taken her anger out on him. The rest of her fury she vents with her kumdo sword.
On the other hand, Tae-yoon is feeling remorse for his bad behavior. After seeing Hae-na’s response and Dong-chan’s indignation, he figures he was wrong in jumping to conclusions, and calls her. However, she’s so surprised that she hangs up on him. He, naturally, interprets this as an angry response, and admits to his colleague Su-ho that he’d made a mistake.
Hae-na eyes the gifts Tae-yoon wouldn’t accept, and remembers his comment that there are other ways of showing feelings than with money. She heads back to the clothing store to return the items, which is when she runs into her boorish blind date, Jung-shik, who had sent gangsters after her at the launching party. They don’t have proof of his involvement, but Hae-na knows it was his doing.
Jung-shik bluffs that they’ve got nothing on him, and Hae-na smacks him on the head. That pisses him off, and he goes at her for a punch — only Dong-chan jumps in front of her and takes the hit.
Things quickly escalate. Dong-chan launches himself at Jung-shik, and a full-on fight ensues. When things calm down, tempers are high and Jung-shik is nursing a bruised and bloody nose — and an even more bruised ego.
Meanwhile, Su-ah is extremely suspicious of Hae-na’s motives for protesting Yoo Sang Group’s layoffs. Wondering if it has to do with Tae-yoon, she decides she needs to know what their relationship is, and orders Eui-joo to call Dong-chan to fish for details. Eui-joo is reluctant — she’s still angry with him for lying about his job — but calls, only to find his phone turned off. So Su-ah sends her to Hae-na’s mansion directly.
Eui-joo is greeted by head housekeeper Ms. Jung, who informs her that Dong-chan is not in. Eui-joo notices a vase of wilted flowers and sees an opportunity to make the most of the moment, and offers her mother’s floral services at a discount.
Just then, another visitor arrives, this time for Hae-na. It’s Tae-yoon, and he and Eui-joo recognize each other from their brief encounter at the party. They’ve barely exchanged greetings when the household receives a call — Hae-na wants her lawyer contacted and sent to the store.
Therefore, Tae-yoon and Eui-joo head over together to sort things out, surprising everyone when Tae-yoon announces himself as Hae-na’s lawyer.
The negotiations hit a wall early on. Even the other lawyer would like to compromise, but Jung-shik is angry and unwilling to settle — he wants to sue Hae-na for assault.
Tae-yoon turns to address Jung-shik directly, startling the latter with his familiar, casual tone. He asks, “You used to always get into trouble at school. How is it you haven’t changed at all?” Belatedly Jung-shik realizes that this is his old schoolmate, son of Yoo Sang Group’s owner.
Jung-shik remains adamant about suing, exaggerating his injury. Tae-yoon tells him to go ahead — but points out that Jung-shik is also guilty of instigating violence, since he sent gangsters after Hae-na. He rattles off a list of Jung-shik’s own legal violations, and warns him that if he pursues the matter, things will get ugly for him. Knowing he’s beat, Jung-shik storms out.
The ladies practically drool over Tae-yoon’s impressive display of smarts, and Dong-chan apologizes (reluctantly) for hitting Tae-yoon the day before. With the air cleared, Tae-yoon asks to speak with Hae-na alone, so the foursome head to a café. Those two chat indoors while Eui-joo and Dong-chan sit together outside.
No longer angry, Eui-joo admits that she was afraid Dong-chan had gone back to his old ways and taken this job to seduce Hae-na. (I know that sounds like a weird logic jump, but Dong-chan’s previous job was essentially just that — flirting with rich women for money. It’s not exactly an honorable career, which is why Eui-joo made him quit. Dong-chan isn’t proud of it either, but it just happens to be his most lucrative personal skill.)
Uneasily, Dong-chan protests, calling it a ridiculous idea. Eui-joo agrees that it’s absurd, and that seeing Hae-na today convinced her that there’s no danger of her fear coming true. (That is not a comforting thought to Dong-chan, who is counting on that.)
Tae-yoon apologizes for his behavior the day before, abashed for accusing her of liking him. He’s right, of course, but Hae-na plays along as he explains that he was embarrassed that she witnessed his fight with his brother.
Hae-na makes it sound as though she had signed his petition out of her own good will, and is therefore (very mildly) offended that he accused of her of selfish motives. In fact, Hae-na explains, she’s always been interested in social causes and issues like corporate layoffs. Tae-yoon is thoroughly embarrassed, and Hae-na agrees to forgive him. Throughout this all, her tone (and its lightly flirtatious undertone) lets him know she doesn’t really hate him.
Eui-joo calls Su-ah to assure her that Hae-na and Tae-yoon are not dating, and that nothing is going on between them. However, she and Dong-chan are both surprised to see how cozy the couple looks on their way out. That was a quick turnaround.
Dong-chan finds that the car has been towed, and to his dismay, this affords Tae-yoon the perfect opportunity to volunteer to take Hae-na home. Hae-na happily accepts.
Tae-yoon intends to hail a taxi since he had taken the bus today, but Hae-na is so eager to look good that she lies about wanting to take the bus. She fibs that she does so occasionally, since it’s good to keep in touch with mass transit.
Tae-yoon is surprised and impressed. As their bus arrives, he grabs her hand as they run toward it and leads her onboard.
The ride home is pleasant; they chat and laugh together, until Tae-yoon nods off and rests his head on her shoulder.
Since he had to retrieve the car, Dong-chan expects Hae-na to beat him home and is therefore shocked to hear that she hasn’t. Just then, she walks up the long driveway with Tae-yoon, both smiling happily as they say their goodbyes.
This does not make Dong-chan happy, and he grumbles as he walks with Hae-na to the house, saying she should have more pride than liking someone who was so rude to her. She finds his comments out of line and wonders, “Speaking of liking, do you like me? Is that why you’re angry?” He denies it, then annoys her by warning that a guy like Tae-yoon wouldn’t like a girl like her.
Upon her return home, Hae-na is brought before her angry grandfather, who gives her a lecture. He has seen photos of her with Tae-yoon, which were supplied by Uncle Chul-gu, who would like nothing better than to cast Hae-na out of her place in the company and take over her spot. (Chul-gu complains that she’s causing too much trouble and doesn’t act in a manner befitting Kang San Group’s heir.)
Grandpa announces that Tae-yoon is an unsuitable match. He’d liked him, but that was before he realized Tae-yoon was the type of man who would publicly oppose his father. He instructs Mr. Jang to buy a plane ticket to send Hae-na abroad, and orders Hae-na restricted to the house until her departure.
Dong-chan, who has overheard the exchange, finds Hae-na outside and tells her that she could have simply denied the charge and say that she won’t date Tae-yoon. However, Hae-na answers that she didn’t want to lie about her feelings for Tae-yoon.
When Dong-chan asks what she likes so much about the guy, she thinks a moment, then answers, “I just like him. I just think of him, and when we’re together I feel butterflies. I miss him, too. I just like him.”
Thinking over her newest dilemma, Hae-na asks Dong-chan to figure out a way to prevent her from being sent away. Surely he must be able to devise a way out!
He’s reluctant, for more than one reason — helping Hae-na with Tae-yoon interferes with his own end goal, but he’s also starting to feel something for her. Yet the next morning, he and the other servants find that Hae-na’s bedroom is empty.
The whole household goes into search mode as the employees inspect all the rooms and scour the grounds for sign of Hae-na. Despite their efforts, she is nowhere to be found.
Thus the household is in chaos when Eui-joo’s mother, Seung-ja, arrives to discuss the job as their new florist. Ms. Jung requests that Seung-ja come back another day, as they are dealing with a crisis at the moment. And so, Seung-ja drives back home, unknowingly conveying a stowaway.
Hae-na climbs out of the florist’s truck, now parked at Eui-joo’s home, to the shock of Eui-joo and Seung-ja. They recognize her, and are completely flabbergasted as she looks around calmly, then makes a call. On the other end of the line, Dong-chan, who has engineered this getaway, assures her that he will be right over.
Unfortunately, his exit is interrupted by a shrewd Mr. Jung, who is aware that something is up. Dong-chan makes an excuse to get away — he’s supposedly going to ask Tae-yoon if Hae-na went to him — but Mr. Jung tags along. This forces Dong-chan to actually visit Tae-yoon, who hasn’t heard anything of Hae-na’s disappearance.
Stuck with a suspicious Mr. Jung, Dong-chan seizes his first excuse to escape. When Eui-joo calls, Dong-chan pretends Eui-joo’s mother has gotten into an accident and rushes away.
With everyone on high alert to find Hae-na, Dong-chan suggests she lie low for the night at Eui-joo’s house, giving her use of his (old) room. He then returns to Kang manor (er, castle) and reports to the chairman that Hae-na had called him to say that until Grandpa Kang drops his opposition, she won’t return home.
Mr. Jang doesn’t let on to Grandpa Kang, but he lets Dong-chan know that he is on to them — he knows Dong-chan helped Hae-na escape, and tells him to bring her home asap.
In the morning, Hae-na sits down with her grandfather, and presses her point again: She wants him to take back his opposition to her (potential) relationship with Tae-yoon. She is undeterred at the suggestion that Tae-yoon may not like her back, and announces her intention to make him fall for her.
Grandpa Kang settles upon a compromise, agreeing to withdraw his objections — if she comes to work at the company.
That’s an easy enough concession, so Hae-na joins the workforce. Her arrival is unwelcome news for the insecure and jealous Su-ah, who snipes that Hae-na knows nothing about working. But Hae-na pulls rank, reminding Su-ah that she’s boss. Su-ah is to report to her every morning from now on. Hae-na also tells Eui-joo, “If she bothers you, let me know.”
The indignity! Su-ah retaliates by telling Dong-chan flirtatiously that if Hae-na treats him badly, he’s welcome in her household. Perhaps Hae-na is just irritated with Su-ah, but I’m willing to bet there’s a jealous tinge in there as she barks at Dong-chan to hurry up and follow her.
Hae-na is installed in her new office with the title of executive director, but she isn’t really intent on doing much work. (She tells Dong-chan that she promised to come out to the office, but not to actually work.)
Her eyes light up when Tae-yoon calls, but Dong-chan snatches her phone, informing Tae-yoon that she is in a meeting. She can’t believe he dared interfere, but Dong-chan says that she’s got it all wrong. If she really wants to snag him, she has to learn how to play hard to get. She’s skeptical, but he’s on the mark when he points out that she doesn’t have much dating experience. If she follows his instructions, she can get what she wants.
Therefore, she returns Tae-yoon’s call later that night, and he invites her to a function helping undernourished children — after all, she’d expressed an interest in helping kids. Despite wanting to say yes, she follows Dong-chan’s instructions to decline the offer, which are spot-on — Tae-yoon feels strangely disappointed at her answer.
However, Hae-na doesn’t know that, and she’s too impatient to wait. Dong-chan catches her sneaking out of the house to meet Tae-yoon — or rather, to head over to his office and “coincidentally” bump into him. If she’s going to meet him, she’d better do it right, so Dong-chan takes over planning their “fateful encounter.”
On one hand, he helps Hae-na in her quest to win over Tae-yoon, but at the same time Dong-chan worries over the problem this presents for his own interests. Still, he sucks it up and engineers the meeting, which has Hae-na making a surprise appearance at the children’s benefit. After feeling disappointment to hear she wouldn’t come, Tae-yoon is now pleasantly surprised.
Hae-na has obeyed all of Dong-chan’s instructions, but now has one trick up her sleeve to get things her way. Eager to spend time alone with Tae-yoon, she sends Dong-chan on a fake errand to retrieve a “very important document” at the office. With Tae-yoon watching, Dong-chan has no choice but to leave for a while.
Conversation flows nicely and Tae-yoon comments that the other attendees are all talking about her, excited at the celebrity in their midst. She remarks, “They must all think I just go to parties. Well that’s true, so I can’t argue.” He laughs, enjoying her frankness: “You seem honest and interesting. I think I’ve had the wrong idea about you.”
Thanks to Su-ho, Tae-yoon is called up to the front to indulge everyone with a song. Taken off-guard, he protests, “But I can’t sing,” finally giving in when everyone cheers for him. True to his word, he is not a good singer but he throws himself into it, and Hae-na finds the performance endearing.
Dong-chan, in the meantime, kills time at a bookstore reading manhwa books with titles like “Cultivating Love” and “Art of Love.” Now he returns, just in time to see Tae-yoon and Hae-na laughing together in a chummy scene. Lost in his thoughts for a moment, Dong-chan smiles and says to himself, “She’s pretty when she smiles.”
On the drive home, Hae-na recalls her wonderful night and laughs to think of how Tae-yoon sang for her: “He’s even cuter because he can’t sing.” While the old Hae-na would never have stepped foot into a function like this, like with the bus ride, she finds that it wasn’t so bad: “It’s the first time going to a meeting like this, and it was a little old-fashioned, but it was fun… This is all thanks to Tae-yoon.”
Dong-chan endures her gushing over his rival, holding back his displeasure. She has fallen asleep by the time they reach home, and he tries to wake her. All night, his feelings for Hae-na have been bothering him, which he has pushed aside to behave normally, but now he gets a moment to indulge his feelings. He stares at her for a long while, tracing a finger along her face. And then she stirs, so he snaps back to his usual demeanor and accompanies her to the house.
By now Dong-chan is sick of hearing about Tae-yoon, and asks wearily if she could stop. Wrapped up in excitement, Hae-na keeps talking, wondering about the next step — since their plan has worked so far, what comes next?
Dong-chan answers reluctantly that the next step is “skinship,” i.e., physical contact. The idea has Hae-na both excited and nervous, and she asks what kind of contact. Holding hands? Walking with linked arms? A kiss?
Tired of acting as reluctant romance coach, it’s like the mention of a kiss pushes him past his limit. Dong-chan moves swiftly, and before she can react, he kisses her.
I don’t say this merely because I like Jung Il-woo, but I’m feeling the Tae-yoon pull more strongly at this point. Perhaps that’s the point and we’re meant to prefer him as the perfect Prince Charming while Dong-chan later sneaks into Hae-na’s affections. But at this stage in the game, Tae-yoon and Hae-na are cute together, and she seems to really like him.
I had the fleeting thought that the love triangle somewhat reminds me of the one in My Love Patzzi. In Patzzi, Jang Nara is the loud-mouthed, obnoxious girl with a soft heart who falls for the perfect, kind chaebol in Kim Jae-won (helped by her buddy Kim Rae-won). It was almost a perfect Cinderella setup, but I’d venture to say that the audience found Kim Rae-won’s down-to-earth common guy much more compelling. Still, the story was set up so that Jang Nara would get her prince, and we were torn between her two lovely men. (Kim Jae-won was the traditional choice for the kdrama hero; Kim Rae-won wasn’t quite set up to win the girl, but stole the scenes from his rival.)
Here, we have a similar setup, although I think the relationship with the men is reversed. The one Hae-na’s supposed to end up with (and I mean according to conventional kdrama structure) is Dong-chan, the common guy who helps her get her prince. Yet just like with Patzzi, I’m feeling more interested in the other pairing.
All this is just to say that I’m rooting for Tae-yoon at this point, but I’ll keep an open mind for when things start tilting toward Dong-chan instead.
- My Fair Lady: Episode 3
- Moon Chae-won promises more smiles in My Fair Lady
- More gifts for the staff of My Fair Lady
- My Fair Lady: Episode 2
- My Fair Lady: Episode 1
- Don’t miss Song Joong-ki in My Fair Lady
- Please take care of My Fair Lady
- Press conference day for My Fair Lady
- Jung Il-woo seeks acting advice
- My Fair Lady’s prince on a white horse
- First still shots from My Fair Lady released
- Jung Il-woo: “Acting is a marathon”