KBS has planned an extension for SSPH?! I don’t know how I feel about that as I think the recent storylines have been dragged out a little too long as it is. But, overall, I’m still enjoying the show so hopefully it won’t wear out its welcome. And, if anything, it helps me feel like I’m a little less behind in my recaps. Hehe. On with the show!
The Jin-pung/Su-jin/Dae-pung/Bok-shil love square gets increasingly complicated as Bok-shil’s feelings for Dae-pung grow, and Dae-pung tries to shoe-horn himself into Su-jin’s life, and Su-jin starts pestering Jin-pung more. Whew, complicated. Su-jin stops by Jin-pung’s pharmacy on the way home from work only to get smacked in the head when Jin-pung opens the door just as she’s about to enter, which results in a huge welt on her forehead. Using the injury as an excuse to bother Jin-pung more, Su-jin calls and demands Jin-pung to attend to the bruise. Dae-pung overhears and insists on treating Su-jin’s injury himself. The next morning, knowing that Su-jin will be stopping by, Dae-pung goes to the pharmacy with Bok-shil tagging behind him. In an incredibly awkward moment, he (tries to affectionately) treat Su-jin’s bruise while Bok-shil and Jin-pung look on unhappily. Later, Bok-shil tries to get Dae-pung’s attention at the clinc by being extra attentive to him, and Dae-pung reacts in characteristic asshole fashion, yelling at her to leave him alone. Still later, Dae-pung stops Su-jin on her way home from work and brings her into the pharmacy to look at her bruise once again. Alone this time, the scene is much more relaxed and Jin-pung and Su-jin share a teasing exchange.
Meanwhile, the Sun-pung/Eun-ji follies continue. Having happily reconciled, Sun-pung and Eun-ji spend night and day on the telephone updating each other on their every move and otherwise reveling in their puppy love. (Kinda cute, kinda makes you wanna puke.) They meet for a date where they spend their time shopping for an ajummah skirt for one of Eun-ji’s roles. Eun-ji tries the skirt on over her clothes and stretches out the huge waist. Clearly not having learned their lesson about acting appropriately in public where cameras may be lurking, Eun-ji tells Sun-pung to stick his head down her skirt and he does it.
The Dad Song/Dad Oh tomfoolery also continues. After getting beat down by their pillow-wielding wives and swearing up and down that Eun-jung is nothing more than an old friend, both dads still can’t stay away and sneak over to the beauty shop for another visit. Before going, Dad Song swipes some special crabs that Mama Song has prepared and puts them in a plastic bag. Later, Mama Song discovers the missing crabs and finds a tell-tale trail of crab sauce. She immediately calls Oh-Ma and the two ladies follow the trail to the beauty shop. Mama Song, as promised, bursts into the shop where the dads and Eun-jung are sharing a dinner of crabs and rice and she goes buckwild, throwing hair supplies and beating Dad Song with a broom. Oh-Ma stands to the side and weeps while tossing a few hair curlers into the fray. Both ladies then drag their husbands back to the Oh household for a showdown. As they approach, they find Sun-pung and Eun-ji making out in front of the house.
At the Oh household, Mama Song and Mom Oh are shrieking at their husbands and children when Jeong-ok comes home bearing bad news in the form of the newspaper with the head-down-the-skirt pictures from Eun-ji and Sun-pung’s date. (Really, they were published in the paper within a matter of a few hours? On the front page?) Unrealistic plot points aside, the article obviously aggravates the situation even more and the moms are distraught with the shame of it all. Jeong-ok pushes everyone to figure out how to resolve the situation. At home, Dad Song sits down with Sun-pung and tells him that as a man, he needs to become more serious and take some responsibility for his relationship with Eun-ji.
As a result of her big fight with Dae-pung, Bok-shil stops going to the Song house for meals, and tries to have a business-only relationship with Dae-pung. Dae-pung, feeling guilty and regretful, tries to make nice with Bok-shil, but she rebuffs him.
Eun-ji goes to meet Sun-pung at his work. Eun-ji is ready to forget the drama and carry on with their relationship, but Sun-pung has taken Dad Song’s words to heart. He tells Eun-ji that he wants them to both take some time apart to really think about what they want from their relationship. Eun-ji, thinking that Sun-pung is trying to make an excuse to break up with her, storms off. She spends the day at home crying. Sun-pung heads off to an island to clear his head.
Dad Oh and Dad Song pay one last visit to Eun-jung to replace a mirror that the wives broke when they stormed the beauty salon. Eun-jung asks them to accompany her somewhere. They end up at her husband and son’s graves. Afterward, she thanks them for their companionship but asks them to only care for her in their hearts from then on and sends them on their way. The dads go out for a drink afterward where they clear up old, old misunderstandings and agree to let bygones be bygones. From there, it appears their reconciliation is complete as they contemplate becoming in-laws.
Mi-pung gets a call from Su-hee, who asks Mi-pung to take care of Hana for a little longer until she can save enough money to take her back. Mi-pung gets upset and yells at her for being such an irresponsible parent. (I’m sure the producers/director are hoping you blink during this scene so you don’t realize that Baby Hana looks suspiciously different from before.)
Sun-pung arrives home from his trip to the island and stops by at Eun-ji’s house. When she answers the door, he tells her that he’s given their relationship a lot of thought and come to the conclusion that he loves her and can’t live without her. Sun-pung then tells Eun-ji that he wants to have a relationship that they can be proud of and that he wants to marry her. Then he tells a confounded Eun-ji he wants to hug her but he hasn’t showered for a week so he won’t, thrusts a package of dried squid that he’s brought back for her into her arms, and turns around to head back home. Most romantic proposal ever! At home, Sun-pung tells all his elders that he plans to marry Eun-ji.
The Song and Oh households busy themselves preparing for the upcoming Sun-pung/Eun-ji wedding. Dad Oh pays a visit to the Song house in order to set a wedding date, and he shares an emotional and touching reunion with Granddad Song. He goes to pay his respects formally, and Granddad Song clutches him by the hand and asks, “Why has it taken you so long to come? It’s been 30 years… I waited for you.”
At the same time, Sun-pung goes to Eun-ji’s house to pick her up to come pay her formal respects to his house. As he’s waiting, Oh-Ma gives him a hard time about marrying Eun-ji so fast, and while she’s so young. She doesn’t even pretend to be happy about the impending marriage. Likewise, when Eun-ji visits with Mama Song, Mama Song airs her concerns and picks out all of Eun-ji’s habits that bother her. Eun-ji, however, remains good-natured and sort of seems to win Mama Song with her practical approach to household budgeting.
Bok-shil arrives at the Song house for the first time in several weeks so that she can help Mama Song prepare to receive guests. When she’s done, she runs into Dae-pung. After an awkward encounter, Dae-pung forces her to let him walk her home. He grabs her by the hand, and as they’re walking, he apologizes to her for treating her so poorly, and in general makes peace with her. Bok-shil accepts, and just when you think there might be the hint of something more from Dae-pung, he reverts back to his obnoxious, idiot self. He tells Bok-shil she’s crazy when she invites him up for tea and takes off back home.
After a whirlwind of activity, Sun-pung and Eun-ji tie the knot! They have a big wedding in the lobby of the broadcasting station where Yong-dal and Sun-pung work. The wedding is where Eun-jung makes her final exit from the show- she stops by to drop of money envelopes for both families, and then quietly takes her exit. During the ceremony, the brothers sing a song, Magic Castle, which they sang when trying to bring Mama Song out of her funk in one of the early episodes– I guess that’s their go-to number. Mama Song looks on, dying of embarrassment. And with a montage of cute Sun-pung/Eun-ji moments, the couple is married.
Post-wedding, the Jin-pung/Su-jin/Dae-pung/Bok-shil love square take off for a 2 day/1 night fishing trip.
The fishing trip turns out to be a study in awkward moments, starting with the ride to the campgrounds. Dae-pung pairs everyone off into couples that nobody envisions but himself– him with Su-jin and Jin-pung and Bok-shil together, and further forces the friendship by making them do all the activities paired off in this manner. Everyone is miserable but him.
Meanwhile, back at home, Su-hee calls Mi-pung after having been fired from her job as a convenience store cashier for yelling at the customers. Su-hee wants to be cheered up by hearing Hana’s voice, but instead, Mi-pung yells at her again and tells her that Hana is sick. Alarmed, Su-hee goes to the Song house to get her daughter back. While she’s confronting Mi-pung, Granddad Song discovers them and orders her to come inside the house.
Mi-ran goes on another audition (this time for Les Miserables), where she has her very own Susan Boyle moment. The judges don’t think much of her until she starts singing the Dream song and then they’re impressed by her voice. Unfortunately for Mi-ran, though, she doesn’t enjoy quite the level of success as Ms. Boyle, and she again gets cut from the audition. It’s a bizarre cross/pop-culture moment that seems to say that talent doesn’t quite transcend superficiality in Korea the way it does in Britain…?
At the campsite, the foursome are preparing dinner and setting up tents when Bok-shil discovers that they’re out of gas for the portable stove. After some argument, Dae-pung reluctantly agrees to take Bok-shil to buy some more, leaving Jin-pung and Su-jin alone at the campsite together. While the other two are gone, Jin-pung and Su-jin are able to get to know each other a little better (and like each other more). Bok-shil and Dae-pung however, get stuck with a flat tire in a sudden downpour. While waiting for someone to come and change their tire, Bok-shil tries to wipe some water off of Dae-pung with her handkerchief. He grabs her hand and hugs her to him, and then crushes her by telling her not to be too nice to him because his heart doesn’t beat any faster for her. Bok-shil asks her what she means to him, and he tells her that she’s always his little Bok-shil puppy. Bok-shil is humiliated and heartbroken.
The next day, Dae-pung is upset and jealous at the new closeness that Su-jin and Jin-pung seem to have developed. On the ride home, they stop at a rest-station and Dae-pung corners Su-jin and demands that they have their date at a musical. Jin-pung accidentally spies them as Dae-pung is pinnning Su-jin against a wall in what appears to be a threatening stance.
I think these episodes held some of my favorite scenes, along with some of the scenes that were really painful to watch both because of the story and because of some technical aspects.
Let’s start with the good.
In the wedding episode, there’s a scene where Sun-pung comes home after being showered with gifts by his mothers-in-law to be. He comes home with a head-to-toe makeover, including a new suit, new accessories, new contacts, and a new ‘do. His style is suspiciously reminiscent of a millionaire playboy character who broadcasted on KBS earlier this year. He taunts his older brothers with his new goods, and then starts singing Almost Paradise– I almost died laughing.
In the same episode, the night before the wedding, Jeong-ok looks in on Eun-ji and Oh-Ma as they share a tender moment during her last night in their home. Dad Oh finds Jeong-ok standing outside the bedroom looking in, and she starts crying because she feels guilty for the last 20 years and even though she thinks she has no right to feel this way, she’s jealous of Eun-ji and Oh-Ma’s relationship and wishes that she could have a special moment with Eun-ji also. I thought Dad Song’s reaction was really sweet- he understands her grief and says, “Let’s cry a little.” I also really appreciated the way Jeong-ok was acted… her grief mixed with regret felt very real to me, and she cried the way real people cry, not the crazy ju-chaek crying that drama characters usually engage in (sorry, I don’t really know how to translate that into English).
Now for the painful– does anyone else cringe when they watch the Dae-pung/Bok-shil scenes? Can I get a holla? Seriously, I know Bok-shil is a woman and all, but I’d like to tell her to grow a pair. *SPOILER ALERT*(I know the dynamic changes in more recent episodes, but I’m writing my reactions to this stage in their relationship.)*SPOILER OVER* I hate using this word, but the way she is with Dae-pung is really kind of pathetic, especially given how shitty he treats her. And he’s such an ass that it’s really, really hard for me to see how I would ever sympathize with him and want him to be with her in the end. A lot of this I attribute to Lee Pil-mo’s acting, which I’ve complained enough about before, so I won’t get into it again except to say– will someone please tell him intensity does not have to mean he shouts everything??
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