Drama Recaps
Smile: Episode 24
by | January 9, 2010 | 44 Comments

I’m back from a brief hiatus—huge thanks to dw4p for plowing forward with the recaps for the past month!!!—and I’ve slowly been catching up on Smile. Yes, slowly. I couldn’t believe it at first; I used to be so excited for the weekends to watch these episodes!

The fact that I was fine with leaving them unwatched wasn’t just because life got busy for the past month… Smile has begun to show the effects of its 16-episode extension. I’ll go into this in more detail in the commentary. For now, one more opening observation: It’s interesting that the romantic antagonist / third wheel has become the comic crux of this series! Han-se is again the one to watch—he steals the scenes with his keen comic timing. I especially appreciate that Lee Kyu-han doesn’t force comedy by making Han-se’s character an outright laughingstock, but instead underscores situational comedy in how he reacts and interacts subtly with the other characters. He’s dead-on as the hen-pecked son, and though Mrs. Lee isn’t a particularly likeable or well-acted character, he makes their scenes funny by bringing to life the foibles of their relationship.


With everyone tangled in one messy human knot, Grandpa Man-bok decisively grabs the will out of Han-se’s hand, putting an end to the melee.

Once inside, Grandpa says that he will reveal what is in the Chairman’s will, but in doing so, that act will irrevocably cut ties with the Seo family. Han-se gets excited (what a delightfully easy way to cut Hyun-soo out of the love triangle!) and asks if anyone has a recording to get this on record.

Hearing this, though, unnerves Hyun-soo and he grabs the will first, to everyone’s–including Jung-in’s–surprise. He asks how the inheritance can matter so much when the collateral damage of claiming it involves people—and not just people, but families that have known each other for generations? He asks Jung-kil to wait until Grandpa Man-bok reveals the inheritance of his own volition, rather than forcing his hand like this.

But Grandpa continues, revealing that the inheritance was left to himself, not to Jung-kil. He was willing to make the inheritance public in order to help the Seos, but he’s come to regret that decision at seeing how the inheritance ignited Jung-kil’s greed. To reveal the inheritance is tantamount to saying Grandpa Man-bok is as good as dead, since he would otherwise not have allowed it to be revealed until the very last. Given the weight of this decision, Grandpa decisively says that if Jung-kil chooses to open the will, then this is the last fulfillment of the debt he owes to the Chairman.

Jung-kil decides to open it anyway. At this, a sly grin creeps across Han-se’s face. All he needs is a pinky finger to complete the Dr. Evil look (HAHA–gotta love it).

There are two envelopes inside, one with “Kang Man-bok” written on it. Grandpa grabs that one, saying it’s his, and takes it into his room.

When Jung-kil opens the remaining envelope, his eyes widen for an instant. But he quickly says, “I can’t do it. I can’t look.” He gives it back to Grandpa Man-bok, saying that he would rather not look at the will and instead continue to trust in Grandpa, who has been like a guide for the Seo family in the absence of the Chairman.

But afterward, Jung-kil climbs into bed in his own room, seemingly dazed from sticker shock. “It’s too big to wrap my head around,” he says to himself, but to his family and Han-se, he insists that he never read it.

Jung-in tells Hyun-soo over the phone that her father absolutely claims not to have read the will. “There’s no way he read it—he didn’t even look for a second! Could you have read it that fast?”

“Well, it’s possible, since I’m a fast reader,” Hyun-soo replies.

Jung-in retorts, “Oppa. Our family doesn’t read books.” She tells him to keep to the original story if Grandpa Man-bok asks about it.

Since Han-se is still insisting on sleeping over, and it would be less than comfortable for Sung-joon to stay in Grandpa’s room given the current state of affairs, it gets crowded in Hyun-soo’s room. There’s one bed; limited floor space; two Goldilockses who insist they can’t sleep on the floor; and Hyun-soo, the gracious host. Hyun-soo offers to sleep in the living room and tells Han-se to sleep on the floor so Sung-joon can have the bed. Suspicious that Hyun-soo’s real intent is to sneak up to Jung-in’s room, Han-se latches on to him.

Sung-joon asks Hyun-soo to have a beer with him before bed, but Han-se pipes up first that he’s not feeling well enough to drink yet. Hyun-soo raises his hand, saying, “I’m in!”

“That’s why I like you, lil’ bro!” Sung-joon says. Not to be outdone, Han-se says he’ll have a drink too.

Sung-joon goes out to get beer, but Ji-soo is waiting for him outside to give back the couple ring. She tells him to save it for when he meets a good person. He doesn’t understand why she’s giving it back, so she explains:

Ji-soo: “This is something you wear together with a man.”
Sung-joon: “I AM a man!”
Ji-soo: “Not to me.”

With that, she walks away. Sung-joon calls after her, but Kyung-soo pops out of the dark to say, “It’s no use. There’s already a man in her life. You might call him… Kyung-soo.” He rather flatly attempts to toss his hathair.

Without so much as flinching, Sung-joon brushes straight past him to follow Ji-soo. He asks her what the real reason is for giving back the couple ring, suggesting that if it’s because she doesn’t think of him as a man, they should spend a night together so she can find out for once and for all how she feels about him. Ah, oblivious Sung-joon. He totally misses all the serious cues Ji-soo is sending, but her grave tone is unyielding.

“Do you know me?” Ji-soo asks.

At least he’s got his facts right now: “You’re an orphan. You sell ddukbokki. You like me. What more is there to know?”

Ji-soo: “Three Star wasn’t my father’s job; it’s my past. I was taken in three times.”
Sung-joon: “Where?”
Ji-soo: “To jail.”

Sung-joon laughs, thinking it’s a joke. Ji-soo acknowledges that the way she’d lived felt like a joke, with no parents, money, respect or future. But she’s disappointed in his non-response, particularly when he abruptly changes the subject. He remarks that it’s cold and staggers off in shock, supposedly to get something warm to drink.

But he collapses not far away, and she sees; when he looks back, she’s gone, having left the ring behind.

Still waiting for Sung-joon, Han-se is hovering while Hyun-soo tries to get some work done. He wonders aloud why Jung-in would prefer Hyun-soo over himself, when he clearly has the better credentials. The two get in a verbal deadlock as they trade barbs; it’s a surprisingly even matchup. Regarding work, Han-se has more status, while Hyun-soo has more talent; Hyun-soo reminds Han-se that he left Jung-in, but Han-se points out that Hyun-soo is keeping Jung-in a secret from the family; Hyun-soo may have paid for the ring to get Han-se out of the way, but Han-se points out that it still doesn’t remove the obstacles to their relationship—since both their families will almost certainly oppose it.

Sung-joon finally arrives home with the beer, and as they drink, he asks questions to figure out his situation with Ji-soo, while Han-se and Hyun-soo use the conversation to talk about Jung-in:

Sung-joon: Is the past important?
Han-se: Of course! Without the past, there’s no present.
Hyun-soo: Why would the past matter? It’s the present that’s important.
Sung-joon: If you give a woman a ring, and she gives it back, what does that mean?
Hyun-soo: That she wants to break up.
Han-se: “I’m angry”—she’s saying something like that.
Sung-joon: Here’s the last one: I like her, but she’s scary.
Hyun-soo & Han-se: [Simultaneously]- She’s always been scary. / – I think Jung-in’s scary, too.

Sung-joon finally catches on and laughs at the situation, but when he goes upstairs to sleep, the drinking & conversation still hasn’t helped him get over the situation with Ji-soo.

Meanwhile, Hyun-soo has gotten drunk. He suddenly hits Han-se and, slurring his words, speaks informally. When Han-se objects, saying they’re the same age, Hyun-soo says that Han-se was still an underclassman to him in college. Hyun-soo escalates the conversation (though Han-se’s responses are de-escalating, telling Hyun-soo to get it together), talking big about taking it outside, but he collapses at the table and falls asleep.

Only, he’s not actually drunk. Ha. (This was one of the scenes where I thought, Huh? I got a laugh out of it, but where did this scene come from?)

In the morning, Mrs. Lee shows up to bring Han-se home. She says she’ll reconsider allowing him to go out with Jung-in. Han-se basically takes to mean that he and Jung-in are back together (overlooking the fact that Jung-in’s not interested). He and Jung-kil are both happy about this, but Grandpa Man-bok starts to speak his mind. He essentially points out, Hey, remember how you screwed Jung-in over (with a more dignified turn of phrase), and puts Mrs. Lee in her place.

Strangely enough, it seems to inspire a turnaround in Mrs. Lee. When Grandpa does say that if Jung-in wants to get back together with Han-se, he’ll consent to the relationship and calls Jung-in out into the living room, Mrs. Lee is actually nice to Jung-in.

Han-se tells his mother to apologize to Jung-in for hitting her, at which she gasps out “Lee. Han. Se,” like a deflating balloon. Surprisingly, she does apologize to Jung-in and seems sincere enough about it. Jung-in says that there’s no need to apologize, since her connection to Han-se is all in the past and she doesn’t even want to think about it anymore.

Grandpa Man-bok pragmatically breaks up the scene by telling Geum-ja to collect a $30 room and board fee from Han-se, since he’d been allowed into the house as Hyun-soo’s friend, but that has proven not to be the case.

Han-se leaves, blithely bowing and telling his unimpressed audience, “I’ll come visit again! I had a fun time.” At the car, he stands and waves like he’s the president. BWAHAHA.

At work, it’s the day that the Beat model is finally having its official launch. The office is all abuzz, and Han-se announces to the assembled team that he and Jung-in are getting back together—in the official, almost-remarriage sense. Jung-in tells him to stop joking around, but Hyun-soo has had enough. He pulls Han-se aside and tells him never to pull anything like that again.

Han-se says it’s not Hyun-soo’s place to tell him what to do, but Hyun-soo replies: “If, like you, I’d only been thinking of myself, I would already have said this. I’ve just kept it in because I don’t want to make Jung-in cry.”

Sung-joon comes by the restaurant to check on Ji-soo, and he sees the hooligans come back. (If they have names, I missed it, so I’ll be calling them BadGuy, with the blonde streak, above, and the Sidekick).

When she sees them, Ji-soo leaves the restaurant, and Sung-joon comes inside asking Kyung-soo who they are. The sidekick claims that BadGuy is Ji-soo’s boyfriend, and Sung-joon asks BadGuy, “So have you been to jail too?”

Sidekick: “Of course [he has]! What about you?”
Sung-joon: “I intend to go now, with both of you.”
BadGuy: “I’m busy now. I’ll see you next time.”

Sung-joon looked pretty willing and ready to go at it, but after they leave, he looks relieved.

At home, Grandpa Man-bok once again tells Jung-kil to leave the house. But Jung-kil insists that he didn’t see the will, and Grandpa Man-bok presses the point again twice.

Grandpa: You really didn’t see it?
Jung-kil: Yes, that’s right.
Grandpa: Jung-kil, do you want me to believe you?
Jung-kil: Yes, please trust me.
Grandpa: Very well. I’ll trust you once more.

(I was speechless too.) Two theories. One: Grandpa is REALLY gullible. Two: Grandpa has something up his sleeve.

But what does he have up his sleeve? He tells Jung-kil that the condition is that he continue to work at the construction site, but also work his off-hours at Joon-bae’s restaurant. (Huh?)

For all her criticism of Jung-kil, Geum-ja is dying to know what’s in the will, too. She finds it in Grandpa’s room in a freshly sealed envelope–which she can’t tamper with.

Or can she? She steams the seal to loosen it, and reads the will in her room with the door locked. Eyes wide, she mutters, “Seo Jung-kil, that bastard!”

At his new job, Jung-kil is surprisingly deferential to Joon-bae, saying that he sees him as a father figure. Joon-bae cuts him off, saying, “I’m a person who found my own kids so annoying that I sent them overseas.” (LOL!)

But Jung-kil suddenly even pays for the meat he’d stolen for Jung-kyung’s birthday party. Putting on an act, his voice cracks as he expresses regretful thanks to Joon-bae for taking Jung-in in after the wedding fiasco. But as soon as Joon-bae leaves, Jung-kil resumes his suspicious demeanor.

The Lee family’s chauffeur shows up at the Kangs’ house to take Hyun-soo’s parents to the launch of the Beat, where Hyun-soo and Jung-in are busy preparing and having a flirty moment. Jung-in takes off when she sees Sang-hoon and Geum-ja out of the corner of her eye, saying that she’d rather avoid the potential scene when Han-se gets there.

But just then, Han-se and his mother show up, and they somehow manage to suck Jung-in into their entourage. When Sang-hoon and Geum-ja see her, they therefore presume she came with Han-se.

Hyun-soo should be enjoying his big day, but he can’t stop scowling at seeing the uncomfortable position Jung-in is in. Jung-in sticks with Geum-ja and Sang-hoon, but Mrs. Lee catches her eye and indicates that Jung-in should stick next to her. Knowing that Hyun-soo is watching, Jung-in smiles reassuringly at him as she cozies up to Sang-hoon and Geum-ja.

But Geum-ja pushes Jung-in off to Mrs. Lee, and seeing them sit together is too much for Hyun-soo. While Han-se is presenting, Hyun-soo stalks across the room in front of the stage (prompting Han-se to yelp, “Kang Hyun-soo!” mid-sentence) to Jung-in. “Come with me,” he says, grabbing her arm and pulling her into the hallway. There’s an audible gasp and a lot of head-turning from the audience.

Hyun-soo: It’s so stupid and idiotic!
Jung-in: What is? I said I was fine!
Hyun-soo: Not you–me! I feel that way!

From the hall, Han-se is calling for Hyun-soo, and Jung-in begs him to go back inside. But he just says, simply, “Seo Jung-in,” and kisses her.

Sang-hoon, who has come to look for Hyun-soo, is stunned to find them kissing. But, eyes closed and lost in the moment, the two of them don’t see him.

Jung-in looks up at Hyun-soo trustingly as he says, “Jung-in, I can’t wait any longer. What can we do? From now on, you’ll have to cry.”


Given its title, you’d think the characters would smile a bit more. But in this episode, Jung-in is mopey and Hyun-soo is scowly almost the entire time. Of course, given that this is a drama series and we’re only halfway through, it would be unreasonable to expect our characters to be smiley and conflict-free from start to finish. So to explain, I’m not bothered that Jung-in and Hyun-soo have to deal with conflicts and obstacles; but I do take issue with the fact that the characteristics that have defined them so far, and endeared them to us, have veered to extremes, rather than showing inflections of complexity or maturity.

Jung-in hangs her head, eyes downcast, in almost every scene. I’ve been wondering about this for a while now—she first got all meek and submissive in front of Mrs. Lee early on, but now it’s completely taken over her character. All her brazenness, her spunk, her fly-in-your-face spirit is gone. Yes, Jung-in needed to grow out of some of that—because at times she got downright respectful. But a doormat is a doormat, and Jung-in is letting herself get walked all over, rather than maturing from hot-tempered verve to sincere candor and enthusiasm. Hyun-soo also seems to go to a character extreme. At the workplace, Hyun-soo is a capable professional who stands up for what he believes. He does sometimes let the personal interfere with the professional—like when he chewed out Han-se for dismissing Jung-in after accepting her headlight design—but it seems too extreme here. I can understand that he’s frustrated at seeing Jung-in let herself get pushed around (aren’t we ALL???), but this launch is a big deal—the culmination of years’ worth of work. Can’t he suck it up? Just a little? Hyun-soo, must you scowl so??

Ah, but then I guess the moment wouldn’t be as dramatic and grand, and Sang-hoon would have no reason to come look for Hyun-soo. Thinking through it, I suppose you could argue (and I suspect you’d be correct if you did) that all of this is part of the set-up of the writing: If Jung-in didn’t suddenly shrink into a submissive punching bag, Hyun-soo wouldn’t notice the difference; if there weren’t such a stark and pitiable change, he wouldn’t get mad. If he weren’t mad, he wouldn’t walk out in the middle of the speech; if he didn’t cause a scene, Sang-hoon wouldn’t go looking for him, etc… Even so, something about the execution just isn’t working for me. I think the decelerated pacing, the repetitive scenes, and above all, the change of tone in this series are what’s bothering me. I had such high hopes.

Ji-soo, too, has lost her moorings in terms of characterization. I found Ji-soo to be believable as a tough girl in her tough-girl scenes: when she pinned Kyung-soo against the wall, or clenched her fist while watching the fight by her pojangmacha. But in this episode, it’s hard to believe that she ever had a tough-girl past. Ji-soo becomes more vulnerable because she truly begins to care for Sung-joon, and that manifests in a rather naive, sheltered way. It’s possible to be both vulnerable and tough at the same time—to show Ji-soo’s internal mental/emotional battle—than the flat, dejected way it’s done here. Though in this case, the problem lies more in the acting than the writing.

All told, I think Smile is like a minivan. It’s not the hottest car in the lot, but it’s still new and nice when you first get it, and it’s got some cool features, like, er, sliding doors and lots of leg room. But then you start driving, and you realize you’re puttering around in a minivan. Thankfully, though, the two people in the frontseats, Hyun-soo and Jung-in, are really engaging, so I’m still along for the ride to find out what happens between them. As for the rest of the family crew packed in the backseats making lots of noise, I’m not digging them much.

So, for now I’m inching forward in my seat to overhear the conversation between our favorite couple, and wishing that, like you viewers, I could fast-forward through the less-enjoyable scenes!


44 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. beehive

    I dropped this drama at ep4 and still haven’t picked it back up. Guess I’ll just read the recaps. Thanks 🙂

  2. Ethereal

    Great recap! This series has been draggy between episode 24-29, however, episode 30 REALLY shakes things up between Ji and HS. I also really liked your minivan analogy! Please continue you’re awesome recaps – it gets better later on!!

  3. dw4p

    hee hee… minivan. that’s awesome.
    we’ve missed you soyjoy!

  4. Angela

    Wow. That’s actually too bad. I’m still very much in love with this drama–just as much as when I first started it. I’m excited that there’s finally getting to be some romantic angst, and that it’s now the main focus… I haven’t found it to be draggy at all. But then again, I’m one of the rare people who DON’T find the adults completely annoying (except for Jung-In’s mother). So I’m sure that makes it a much more enjoyable experience when watching–heck, I even find Jung-In’s detestable dad really interesting as a character. And I do agree with you about Ji-Soo.

    But as always, with extensions, it does make me curious to see how the story would have differed… but for now, I have no issues with it.

    However, I don’t think the characters are as far removed from their original selves as you seem to think. They may seem toned down a bit… but considering the obstacles they’re facing, I can’t say I really blame them. (And really, Jung-In would be a lot harder to like, if she acted now how she acted in the beginning). In the very least, at least she’s fighting to retain her integrity and pride, while giving everything she has in order to connect with Hyun-Soo’s mother and father. If anything, it just shows how much she’s grown as a character. She now has Hyun-Soo’s happiness to think about–not just her own. And I really doubt he’d be happy if she acted like a total ***** to his beloved mother (No matter how much she may deserve it).

    And I don’t think Hyun-Soo’s actions are very out of character either. Someone who has loved passionately and devotedly for 8 years (?), would naturally give everything he has in his relationship. And I think his behavior at the launch fits right in with his character. How can it be contrary or unprofessional, when most of his professional-relationship (that we, the viewers, have seen) has been connected in some way with Jung-In? And unlike Jung-In, he’s made it clear that he *wants* to let his coworkers know of their relationship. Even the example you gave, was something he did for Jung-In’s benefit. He may be professional… but he’s made it clear that there is no real line between personal and professional with him. It’s a distinction he *can’t* make. Not when Han-Se acts the way he does in the office, and every time he’s around Jung-In.

    So when he saw Jung-In cheerfully trying to connect with his parents at the launch, only to be coldly and rudely shut out *again*–and even worse, pushed towards Han-Se’s mother. I don’t think his reaction is all that strange. For the past couple episodes we’ve seen that tension slowly building–and now, FINALLY we get to see the moment when it explodes.

    And I, for one, LOVED it. ^_^

  5. deeta

    I get weirded out that Hanse’s mom is nice now. I haven’t caught up to the current episodes, but I felt it was a strange turn of character.

    In all honesty, at the moment, I’m really only watching for Hanse and Sungjoon because this whole Jungin/Hyunsoo thing is getting boring. If they’re going to make this couple gloomy until a few eps before the end, I might as well just skip to those sunnier eps.

  6. chillipepper

    I am about to drop this drama. What a shame! How I loved it at beginning and
    how I used to look forward for the weekends so I can watch it online.

  7. Sonam

    I love this drama and every weekend the excitement of what’s going to happen next increases. This is my first long drama and I approached it with some trepidation but now I am so glad it’s long. Instead of getting tired of the characters they have actually become like family members. I love watching JI’s father’s scenes because he is such a great actor.
    Agree about JS. Never paid much attention to her from the beginning so I shouldn’t say this but I didn’t much attention to the older generation but I now I like watching all of them. It’s such a cozy feeling to see two old harobojis getting together over drink and food and to see their friendship. Also the foxy halmoni is fun to watch. But the best is of course the two leads. I never get the feeling even for a minute that they are acting.

  8. msles59130

    I love this drama. I don’t find it draggy at all! I honestly don’t get what the reviewer is saying, because the interactions between the lead couple are completely different than any I have seen. There is so much honesty and directness. When there is a problem or misunderstanding, they deal with it head on. And Ji Soo and the older brother? This is about as un-kdrama-ish as it is possible to get!

    That said, I am fully caught up, and I am dying to see what happens next with the families. This show is like a minivan that you get in, only to find out it is a concept minivan later, with all new bells and whistles, and everything minute, something new and unexpected is discovered.

  9. lanlan

    Agreed with #6 chillipepper .

    I’m about to drop this drama as well. Used to like Jung In character but find that she is quite annoying now. It’s no fun to watch Lee Min Jung’s acting any more, especially with her character development. In episode 30, Jung In can not enjoy a romantic dinner with HS cause she worries too much about grandpa and GJ. It’s not very smart of her. The story development is not that interesting either.

    I switched to Assorted Gems and it’s not better. This drama is a typical Kdrama. The grandpa in Smile You is annoying but the 2 grandmama in Assorted Gems are worse. Take a break from Kdrama.

  10. 10 kdrama-newbie

    thanks for the recap…ive been waiting for it, since like…forever LOL 😀

    @angela and sonam: i couldnt agree more, i just lurveee this drama, never enjoyed a drama this much since my girl, city hall and YAB…i love the main couple, sooo much chemistry, i actually wish they go out in real life, hihihi ;)…and what about that kiss?! major SQUEEEEEE!!!…the families are hilarious esp JI’s dad. this is my 1st long kdrama too, i was hesitant to watch it at 1st, but now im dreading the end, yeah! talk about withdrawal syndrome 🙁 but for now, im really enjoying the ride, cant get enough of the Soo-In couple…fighting!!!

  11. 11 Thu

    Agreed. I am starting to get a little bored. Tired of the same conflict and moping. I am really just trucking along because of Hyun Soo and Jung In. Let’s hope it doesn’t disappoint. I really enjoyed the beginning episodes.

  12. 12 anna

    i still have high hopes for this drama. and tho my excitement for new episodes isnt as high as before, i still enjoyed it very much. a little draggy-ness and annoying-ness i think is typical for a more than the normal 16-18 epis. as much as i love smile, you i have to admit the around epi26-29 is kinda a lil below my expectation, but i think it’ll change with this week episode. but with no doubt the chemistry between the two leads is the one that keeps me holding hard on this drama.

  13. 13 alee921

    Wow, I couldn’t disagree more. This drama is fantastic. I can’t say enough good things about it.

  14. 14 onemorepls

    Welcome back soyjoy.
    Even tho it’s a tinnnnyyyy liiiiiiitlle draggy but I’m still excited and looking forward to the weekend. That scene with Hyun-soo faking been drunk got me a little nervous because where is my macho man Hyun-soo who doesn’t stand down to Han-se? This seem a little like he’s scare of Han-se and can’t stand up to him when he”s sober.
    Anyway, I didn’t love the kiss but I ended up loving it because after the kiss Hyun-soo have Jung-in in his hand so tenderly. Sigh .
    Anybody else found that BadGuy hot? He remind me of Hyun Bin. hehehe 🙂

  15. 15 Icarusfalls

    I actually really liked this episode.. especially the end scene!! =P I’m more scared of episode 30 because of the preview summaries than anything we’ve had so far.. I really hope there is no unnecessary drama but I don’t see how long they can stay away from it..

    All in all though, I LOVE this drama.. and hyun-soo oppa is just plain awesome!!!

  16. 16 MinT

    Oh Yeah. WOOHOO!!! it’s sat.

  17. 17 sooincouplelover

    i still love this drama a lot. as my first “long” drama i look forward to it every weekend. i do think it’s getting a little draggy, but the acting/writing is pretty damn good! i like this drama cause its believable and i havent had something like this in a long time. also, the sooin couple make my heart flutter and that hasnt happened to me since coffee prince! i enjoyed the recap and hope more will come soon 😀

  18. 18 ausming

    As always, a mighty thank you for the recap and your comments.

    Never felt that this drama was draggy, it’s still a really refreshing and interesting ride, and a way lot more pleasant and exciting than many other kdramas. The Sooin couple still manages me to make me feel all tingly and warm, unlike other shows where the excitement tapers off when the main leads get together. However, I do have to agree there were some scenes that did not gell with me in this episode, especially HS dragging JI out in the middle of the launch. Also the location of the kiss, like wasn’t it way too public, wouldn’t his colleagues run after him (so he would not have time to even kiss JI) etc etc? Anyway anyway, I am relieved that the tone of the drama is getting a bit more serious, don’t know how many episodes I can endure seeing HSae trying to separate the couple in such a silly, comic way that it was getting a bit too farcical for me and the scenes of their love triangle were beginning to feel like fillers. Finally, ahjumma, how about toning down on your admiration and love for your son, it’s almost incestuous!

  19. 19 wideSmiler

    I laughed when Hanse’s mom yelled at him to continue his speech and without even a thought, he obediently returns to the podium. Ha!

    Minivan! hahaha! I dig it! Hyunsoo and Jungin are the only reasons I watch the drama. Engaging, wonderful, and cute they are!

    Oh, anyone find HS extremely hot in this picture?
    hahaha! I think I have a thing for skinny guys in hoodies…and when they stand with their hands in their side pockets. O_o this show’s turning me into a giddy schoolgirl.

  20. 20 Icarusfalls

    @19 – Haha.. I remember that! I loved the whole drung hyun-soo screaming at han-se to leave his girl alone and that he’d beat him up.. etc..
    It was so funny when I realized he was only ‘pretending’.. poor beta hero who can be aggresively obnoxious only thru pretend. =P

  21. 21 ma-e

    I never felt this drama was draggy….but instead the obstacles and dramas are coming in. Although i jhope this drama to be happy, sweet, and funny like it used to be from ep 10-22, but it can’t keep going on like that. The sotry needs to get mature, SOO IN couple can’t keep bickering with each other so the writer is showing how deep and mature their love has become. It’s time for the drama to get serious and then when the problems are solved it can be back to the sweet and happy moments again. I still love how the writer can add some comedic moments in the dramatic episodes like 27 -30. JI is so devastated but she still tries to be strong outside, Never found a strong and favourable character like her before. Hs as well, he can’t be the mama’s boy and good guy forever. He loves JI, and JI is not an ordinary woman, she has questionable family, past experiences beind dumbed, bankcruptcy, etc. Although JI tries to solve everything by herself, HS knows that she is starting to break down as well so he is the one who have to take the actions now. So i don’t mind him now becoming so daring. I don ‘t want him to be like his father who is so timid, that can’t protect his wife (although he is a kind man)

    Jung In is still JI becausie although how spunky and strong a character she has some limits and weakness as well . Jung in is bearing the insult and treated like doormat, but not that she changes into a weepy woman just because she doesn’t fight back, she has now grown mature and handle everything calmly without causing chaos like she used to be so explosive and emotional.t she stated before that she doesn’t care about Hse mom or anything related to Hse, so she bears everything for HS and try to look good in front of HS mom.

    Although JISOO is strong outside , she is still weak inside. she tries to be strong because she grows up alone and has to survived by doing anything. Now she found a man that treats her differently. She loves him but with her background i do thinkl it’s really hard to accept. It’s kind of normal for her to be devastated.
    As i can see, the female characters on this drama are strong, and yes they sometimes cry and weep, but they still try to get over it soon and not crying for pity from others.

  22. 22 [email protected]

    Thanks for the recaps… Boring is what we can predict with such a lots of ep arent we??? but in Smile they still manage to keep bring out the “momentum” in each of the episode… Thats why im still fond of it till now…

    I love this ep, sad though but it show how much Hsoo would gave everything for his Love one…. gosh how I Really wish that there is Hsoo in real life…Hohohoho….

    And the whole conversation with HS,Hse,SJ was hilarious… its like they are fighting for their future brother in law attention….. LOL…. Those two Mama Boy….^0^

    The KISS ya THE KISS!!!! Im all being pervert over that scene, rewind it over and over and the more i watch it the more i found it so affectionate and tender….. Hyunsooyyyyyaaaa,,, u should do that earlier, now u feel the joy of it, i guess i could expecting more of that “action” in the next ep can i??????

  23. 23 cecile

    Awwwww i love love this drama, its the first Long drama that i ever watched…. thanks god i pick this drama…
    JKH-LMJ is a treasure in this drama… never been this fond of a couple since GY-YEH in coffee prince…

    Anyway,, Thanks for the recaps.. im at ep 29 now and yeahhh what can i say,,, i want a Hsoo for myself…Wkwkwkwk…

    This ep is great, its funny at the beginning, intense at the middle, sad near the end and a BAAMMMMM at the end……

  24. 24 ohemgee

    i totally agree with all of your points here, but i really think that the show-and even episode 25-picks up-especially where you felt that episode 24 faltered. that’s the thing with this series (at least in my opinion)- although it has its flaws it seems that it is still able to engage me enough to carry me onto the subsequent episode, then the next. ultimately, i think that’s why it is the longest kdrama that i have followed to date.

    so for all of you thinking of dropping it, i would say don’t do it, and perservere if you like the characters and story…sure it’s not perfect, but i’ve found that they generally address all the faults i find. plus, i am rooting so hard for everyone-from the Kangs to the Seos to even Hanse and his mom, to find their happiness!

  25. 25 Icarusfalls

    O… forget what I said about it me being scared that it’ll be slow or dramtic in ep 30…. the drama is continuing being awesome!! I can’t wait for ep 31!!

  26. 26 pabo ceo reom


    OMG hun (too bad you have to recap everything) but I’ve been skipping parts 10 episodes ago! LOL.

    I watch enough to get the gist of the other storylines but our main couple is really where the action (and interest) exist.

    I just gobbled up episode 30 and I can’t wait for the next one 🙂

  27. 27 Bebu_star

    Just love your minivan analogy! I totally agree with you about it all!
    Hyun Soo and Jung In are the reason i watch this show!
    And maybe now it’s also what’s in the will….

    Please don’t give up on these recaps because i can only read these! I can’t actually watch it!
    Looking forward to your next recap^^

  28. 28 Amornpan

    i still love this drama a lot. as my first “long” drama i look forward to it every weekend and i usually replay it at least 2 times for some episodes. i understand some people don’t like the story line of this drama….for me i also can’t stand watching the long drama like…Creating Destiny, Don’t Hesitate, Assorted Gems….as well since it felted too boring for me!
    The drama is continuing being awesome!! I can’t wait for next ep.!!

  29. 29 Quaggy

    Thank you for the recap, Soyjoy! You and DW4P are fighting the good fight (without the benefit of the fast forward button.

    I have to admit, I’m getting a little frustrated with this show too. (Though it’s been happening more since episodes 27-30, I’ll try to stick with just episode 24 and before.) The mini-van analogy is a very good one. The problem right now is that most of the characters have become annoying, whinny and even mean.

    When I think about what hooked me about the this show in the beginning, it’s like I’m watching a completely different show with different characters. (I’ve been reading the recaps all along, but it was only after Jung-In and Geum-ja got kicked out that I started watching every episode.) Only Jung-In and Hyun-soo have stayed the same… and that’s a testament to the skill of the actors.

    I miss how Geum-ja was becoming Jung-in’s surrogate mother. I miss how the dads were actually friends (or more acurately frien-emies). I miss how Sung-joon was the comedic relief. I miss liking the characters for themselves.

    That said, I’m still committed to the end. I want to see where the road winds up. I’m just not enjoying the trip as much as I did before.

  30. 30 sukispop

    Soyjoy and dw4p,

    Thanks for the great recaps! And welcome back, Soyjoy! =)

    For those of you who’ve become a bit disenchanted with this drama, all I can say is hang on and be patient. Episodes 29 and 30 will remind you of why you fell in love with Smile, You in the first place.

    Hyun-soo and Jung-in, Sung-joon and Ji-soo. These two couples, alone, make watching this drama completely worthwhile, imho.

  31. 31 onemorepls

    Just want to make one thing clear. I don’t think it’s boring at all. Loving this drama still because I still can’t seem enjoy any other drama beside Smile,You.

  32. 32 soyjoy

    @ 4, Angela –

    Thanks for your insightful character analysis! Your comment made me think again about Jung-in and Hyun-soo, and I’m inclined to agree with you. With Hyun-soo especially, thinking back to his one-sided love for Jung-kyung, he was so nothing-to-lose in his pursuit of her that he seemed to live for the public display, even if it only ended up in humiliation for him. So I think you’re right: Hyun-soo’s all-out way of loving makes it impossible for him to hold back his emotions.

    I see your point about how Jung-in’s deference to Geum-ja shows that whereas she used to think only of herself, she’s now taking Hyun-soo into account as well. I still don’t think she needed to be so defeatist about it for so many episodes; Jung-in’s earliest and most defining characteristic when we first met her was her resilient, indefatigable spunk.

    If I think really hard about it, the main problem I have with Jung-in’s newfound insecurity is because it results from the cultural expectations she has to deal with. She internalizes the fact that she’s socially “tainted” because of her marriage to Han-se so deeply that it’s painful to watch, especially since it’s so unfair to her. Ah, good discussion! This has gotten some thoughts percolating in my mind… I’ll save it for a later commentary, pending how the next few episodes pan out. Stay tuned 😉

    (And as a minor point of clarification, I didn’t say that I found the recent episodes of Smile boring–rather, that they didn’t live up to my expectations. Not sure which is worse or better, but there you have it.)

  33. 33 CC

    I’m loving this drama & looking back a few weeks or so ago i was hesitating to watch it as I didn’t think much of it but now I’m totally hooked wishing it’s aired everyday! Re Hanse (Lee kyu han) character, he’s so adorable in this drama. I remember watching him for the first time in Que Sera Sera & his role there was pretty serious & he already caught my eye…no offense but i thought he’s a lot cuter than Eric Moon and don’t take it the wrong way I also love EM but I was quite taken by LKH & now that he’s a part of Smile, You it’s much more interesting for me to follow this drama! I just hope that he gets a lead role in his next project coz his potential in acting should never go unnoticed! It’s funny that when you see a villain (as Hanse’s character must fall in that category) your reaction would be that of hate or something but with Hanse’s in this drama, it’s the opposite, he makes you laugh & like him!

    As for the leads Hyun song & JI — need i say more? They’re adorable & cute & love them!

    Thnx for the recap Javabeans as always!

  34. 34 marinai

    First I was very pleased to see Angela comment , it is exactely what I feel about the show and the characters , I do agree that it was painful to watch for me to see Jung In thinking that about herself, but it’s totally understandable, she has married once a guy who left her on the road, and now she isdeeply in love with another guy Hsoo who can be consider like a perfect guy ( perfect husband materiel episode 16) at his mother’s eyes.
    Culturally , she’s tainted ( Joon Bae Haraboji said to Jung Gil when he learn about SooIn relationship that it was totally normal for Geum Ja to reject the girl cause ” she’s gone once” means that “she’s not pure anymore” Jung Kil responded with “She was even not married for 3 hours”!!!!
    This is all about the culture, GJ idealizes her son and wants him to marry well, JI knows GJ personality and if you watch the next episodes you will see that GJ when she will learn about the relationship won’t help JI to feel better !!! She was treated like crap , and that it is more painful to watch …..
    Smile you is in my opinion a very good show , I love it so much, the evolution of the characters is fine for me …. HS after obeying his whole life to his beloved mother is now in love , he wants to possess JI (literally) , that’s what you call crazy in love …..( when you’re in love with someone you will give everything episode 16 of SY) seems thathe did not lie ( episode 29) , he can throw everything even his family …. I love smile you , it’s maybe not the best show ever , but in my heart it is !!!^^

  35. 35 asianromance

    thank you so much for recapping. I have sort of stopped watching it. It’s a good show, but it just isn’t as good as it was in the beginning. However, the characters are lovable and I do care about them- so I’m glad to be able to follow them through your recap!

  36. 36 Kristen

    That minivan analogy is spot-on. d^^b

    And as much as I love it, this series would be hella painful without ample use of fast-forwarding.

  37. 37 Kgrl

    Oh hon, don’t worry about saying how you feel. Yes, SY definitely has its flaws and isn’t the most well-written nor produced drama, but its subtle and innocent charms are enough to pull me over and think it refreshing.

    From the beginning, I have focused on Soo-In, and though side characters have gradually warmed their way into my heart, I really do not have much expectations in terms of plot or character development on their part. Therefore, the slowing tempo and slightly disjointed flow doesn’t bother me that much b/c I realized this drama for what it was – a fantastically protrayed romcom couple with enough wit and heart to enjoy. If it weren’t for Soo-In aka Jung-Ho, this would have been any other family drama that gets the FF button.

    Sometimes, the mundane things are the easiest to overlook – but amongst Smile’s newest weekday competitors I’ve checked out – I still find Soo-In the most inspiring. Granted Chuno is going to be the better drama, but I’m not so sure about the pairing. It took me mere mintues to get that “punch in the gut” feeling with Soo-In – hasn’t hit me yet with the other new drama pairings.

  38. 38 danni

    I won’t lie, the few episodes before this one and the ones after are a little dull (even though there is definite plot development) and I feel that the writers are straining to come up with something to drag this out for a few more epiosdes. Even though I enjoy the quirkiness of the Han-Sae character, he can’t keep up the humor alone and it eventually becomes boring.

    Concerning your character analysis of Hyun-Soo and Jung-In, I have to disagree about Hyun-Soo. I don’t feel that the writers actually took him to a character extreme with his jealousy towards the way Han-Sae has been acting with Jung-In. We’ve seen him this way before when Jung-In started working at the Global Motors, though to a lesser extent. I feel the action is justified by this time because he’s had Han-Sae creeping around his house, everyone is urging Jung-In to get with Han-Sae, and he still has to keep their relationship a secret. Naturally, the guy is at his limits. Hyun-Soo is a guy that does anything for love, something we have seen when he was in love with Jung-Kyung and something Jung-Kyung and the Director have explicitly said in conversation, so I don’t think that his character is too extreme, at least not at this point.

    I feel like they keep throwing Jung-In’s character under the bus, making her happy and spunky one minute and then down and sad the next. We’re lucky to have Lee Min-Jung portraying her, but it is indeed difficult to understand why she’s become so mopey all of a sudden and doesn’t fight back against anyone.

    Well, I enjoyed your recap and I’m glad that you’re still doing them soyjoy! Can’t wait for the next one.

  39. 39 Icarusfalls

    OMG.. Loved Ep 32!! ^_^

  40. 40 glitzyglam

    Is it just me, or Hansae’s mom’s apology to JungIn didn’t actually seem sincere? It seems here is a plan up her sleeve– something that has to do with Hyunsoo..? It almost seemed like she was trying to get back at Hyunsoo (for WHAT though? Hurting her son’s pride?!?!?) because of the time she saw HS hugging JI. I just don’t understand how that one scene with Mrs. Lee seeing them hug would strike something within her and allow her son to be with JI. Hmmm…

  41. 41 marinai

    She’s like how in the world JI CAN reject HER GMOTORS Heir for Kang HS ?
    She’s perverse !!!
    She wants JI to come back with Hse to win the game !!!!

  42. 42 onemorepls

    I Luv this drama. They’re the greatest couple ever. Never once have I been disappointed. All the other kdrama couples have misunderstand and trust along the way somewhere but these two are awesome.

  43. 43 Snicks

    Here is my Smile,You story:

    little background… when i watch a Kdramas w/ the usual 16eps and i start to LOVE that drama, i want it to be extended to 20.. maybe 24 eps.. but more than that (like 30.. 35… 46?!?!?!?!), i tend to become Skeptical.. i’ve never watched any drama that was more than 25 eps..
    i discovered Dramabeans while You’re beautiful was airing.. Yes, i AM a YAB ADDICT! and so far nothing has caught my attention as YAB, although i am starting to like Pasta, but JB will stop recapping (which is a little sad, but i understand).

    So anywho.. i was very determined NOT to watch Smile, You because of the “46 episodes”.. i would read Dramabeans recaps on this drama once in awhile, and i think the issue with the family members is a little too much for me, but i LOVE the lead couple.. I was just content with reading recaps when i came across these videos on Youtube:


    [credit to: kerryle83] <<< Thanks to her i decided to START WATCHING Smile, You… i am 33 episodes too late.. LOL! finished 19 eps in 2 days ( i already peeked at ep 32 and 33, to prepare myself. LOL).. and even though there are some sad moments in the drama, and the bickering between the family is exhausting.. and when Sung Kil comes in the screen i usually just SKIP HIM. (LOL) i always end up having TONS of SMILES on my face.. most of everyone here already know that the main couple is just PHENOMENAL! its so natural and genuine and i just Love EVERY SINGLE SCENE that they have together. i love how WE all witnessed how their relationship bloomed.. just thinking back to their journey makes me smile so much!

    Anyways, here i am, proclaiming my Love for Smile, You!! Dramas as genuine as THIS, is THE reason why i still have faith in true love! =D

  44. 44 Snicks

    ^^^ Sorry.. wrote too much above.. LOL. my comment is “awaiting moderation”

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