Drama Recaps
The Woman Who Still Wants to Marry: Episode 15
by | March 21, 2010 | 62 Comments

Meltdown! Hey, if my 24-year old boyfriend were hanging out with a popstar who calls him oppa, I’d be gnashing my teeth on raw pasta too. Or making a voodoo effigy. To each her own. There’s trouble in paradise this week, as we close in on the finale, and all our couples are put through the proverbial wringer.


Min-jae drags Shin-young outside her apartment to escape his mom’s intrusion. Shin-young asks where they’re going, and Min-jae drops the bomb: “To get married.” What?! That’s the worst possible thing you could say in that moment. Come on, how could anyone take you seriously now? Shin-young feels the same way, as she tells him to stop it and insists they go back and clear things up with his mom.

Min-jae tells her not to over-think it, but Shin-young sees right through his insecurity and naïveté. I mean, really, if you’re trying to get married to escape your mom treating you like a child, you should know that she’ll be doing that till the day you die anyway. Min-jae is really at odds with being unable to control this situation. He grabs Shin-young for a desperate hug, saying, “Don’t go.”

Inside, Sang-mi is stewing in righteous motherly anger, that is, until she finds a letter that Shin-young wrote to Min-jae:

Roommate Min-jae!

I don’t think I’ll be able to see you tomorrow morning before I leave, so I’m writing a letter.

Da-jung always complained about that room being cold; I worry that it’s cold while you’re sleeping.

The promise I made with your mom, I really want to keep it. It’s a courtesy that I want to pay to the person who brought the Min-jae that I love, into this world.

I’ll only accept you as my roommate until the end of this week. I’ll give you a heated blanket for the rehearsal studio so you can stay there. When I miss you I’ll come see you.

An excitement I haven’t felt for a long time
The desire to try and live well
This is the gift that you have given me.
What gift can I give you…I think about it every day.

Thank you, and I love you,
My heart’s Spring, Ha Min-jae.

It’s both super-cute and super-convenient, since it exonerates her from any hanky-panky goings-on in the apartment. We should all leave such letters lying around in strategic places for bosses, mothers-in-law, insecure boyfriends/girlfriends…it would save a lot of time and energy in the long run.

It looks like Sang-mi’s buying their chaste living arrangement, (which she should, since it’s true, much to my own dismay) and leaves the food that she brought over.

Meanwhile, Min-jae is aimlessly driving Shin-young around town, with no destination in mind but refusing to head back home. Shin-young finally gets fed up with his childishness and tells him to stop the car. She gets out and takes a cab back home.

Bu-ki comes to her rescue, paying for her cab fare and helping her suss out the situation with Min-jae and his mom.

They discover all the food that Sang-mi left, making Shin-young feel even guiltier. Shin-young confesses that she felt a generation gap with Min-jae today. Bu-ki replies, “It’s not a generation gap; it’s just differences in thought.” While that’s a nice ideal, I tend to agree with Shin-young in this case.

But then Bu-ki drops some knowledge in Shin-young’s lap: “Lee Shin-young, if there are so many things plaguing you, then just break up with him. Every couple has a mountain they have to climb. If you don’t want to deal with someone ten years younger, you could choose someone your age with a bad personality, or maybe you’d prefer to deal with parents-in-law and siblings. This is your choice. No matter which man you choose, there will always be something you have to overcome in the relationship. Pick something you can accept.” Shin-young: “Do you not have anything you can accept? Is that why you’re still single?” Bu-ki: “I just like my life right now. That’s why I’m single.” Well how do you argue with that?

While I don’t think that any relationship conflict is interchangeable, I do appreciate Bu-ki’s no-nonsense brand of wisdom. It comes from the school of Value Thyself, with a mix of Life Can Be Whatever You Choose, both of which are right on my wavelength.

Shin-young texts Sang-mi that she hopes any misunderstandings will be cleared up and that she’ll send Min-jae back home. I like that Shin-young always does the adult thing and considers the other person’s point of view.

To his credit, Min-jae shows up at his mom’s house to do some damage control. First he petulantly chastises her for treating him like a kid in front of his girlfriend. So not cool, Mom. But then he explains that there’s nothing to worry about, and that Shin-young is frustratingly intent on keeping her promise to Sang-mi.

Sang-mi just chalks it up to Shin-young making up for her age. But if you knew Shin-young, you’d know she doesn’t think her age is a sin or a shortcoming that has to be made up for. Which is why her face belongs on a flag. Or a quarter. At least a t-shirt.

Min-jae then switches to sweet-talk mode, apologizing and admitting fault. This totally works, as it usually does with moms. Turns out no matter how pissed they are, they still love you.

Back at home, Shin-young packs up Min-jae’s things, and finds his student ID:

That thing is probably Bummie’s real student ID photo, because he looks about twelve in it. At first she thinks it’s adorable, but then it makes her feel the age gap even more. I don’t blame her, because the dude in the picture is a tiny, tiny baby.

Over in the land of the happily wed, Da-jung is studying for an upcoming job, when her sister-in-law bursts in with bags of groceries and nephew in tow. Oh, horror. I know she’s not the worst sister-in-law in kdrama land, by any means, but there’s something so frustrating about these sorts of people—the ones who pretend not to know that they’re totally imposing on you and bilking you for everything they can.

Sure enough, today she wants Da-jung to cook her a five-course meal, so she can pack it up and take it to her in-laws. Really? I thought you were just a resident of crazytown, but now you’re in the running for Mayor.

When Da-jung insists on getting back to her work after helping her prep the food, Little Miss “Unni, you’re so chic, you’re so smart” shows her true colors. She can’t believe Da-jung won’t help her with this one little thing, when their family accepted her against her father’s wishes. What?! You never lifted a finger to accept her! What the jeebus are you talking about, you crazy woman?!

She actually goes on to add that she thought Da-jung, being of her age, would be sweet and kind (read: making up for her age by being extra “helpful”). And the girl their dad wanted Ban-seok to marry is SO nice and good-mannered. Oh, I want to hit her with heavy objects!

In one sense, I am satisfied, because I KNEW she was just putting on that nice-clueless act. Big faker! But of course, Da-jung is now completely at a loss (who knew human beings could be like this?) and feels trapped and helpless.

She seeks out Bu-ki’s advice, and I’m glad to see that we’ve dispensed with exorcists and fortune-tellers and gurus, and are now going straight to Bu-ki. Should have been that way from the beginning. She’s free and she’s always right.

Bu-ki tells her the two viewpoints are too different; that she should just suck it up and help her out. Aw, man. Isn’t there some scare tactic you can think of, involving crazy wigs and makeup? It worked so well on the father.

Da-jung says longingly, “Today, I’m jealous of you and Shin-young.” It’s funny that Da-jung is jealous of Shin-young, and Shin-young is jealous of Da-jung, while Bu-ki isn’t jealous of anyone because SHE’S AWESOME.

Bu-ki tells her to think of all the times she prayed for someone to share agu-jjim with (that octopus stew for two), and Da-jung replies that the price of sharing agu-jjim with someone is too high. She wonders aloud why people get married. It befits her character to want so much to get married to end her single life, only to realize marriage isn’t an end, but a beginning.

At work, Shin-young is finally making waves as she scores a big story about that politician who beats women, getting to air the interview that got squashed way back when. The whole team feels vindicated and Shin-young gets acknowledged by her boss. Victory!

Shin-young goes to find Min-jae to share her good news, but she comes upon him just as he is doing this:

To be fair, the girl is the one doing all the snuggling, but you’re not exactly shaking her off like she’s got leprosy, which you should be doing!

It’s actually harmless, and Shin-young sees it as such, but it stings her a little, in the face of all the age-gappy pangs she’s been feeling lately. She turns around and leaves without saying anything, but Min-jae sees her and runs after her.

They chitchat, and she casually asks who the girl is (nice move). Min-jae tells her that’s Senna, a junior classmate, and a singer. He gave her one of his songs for her new album. Okay, she’s not only younger than you, but also a singer? Why are you doing this to me, Show? If you set her up to be some perfect match for Min-jae, I will boycott the final episode! I will!

Min-jae wants to have a final dinner together at home, since he’s moving out tomorrow. They decide that the first person home will cook, and Shin-young says she’ll probably be late. Yeah, if my 24-year old boyfriend were going to cook dinner for me at home, I would have this look on my face too:

Over at Sang-woo’s house, he and Sang-mi are meeting with his mother, and as expected, things are not going well. Can’t argue that Sang-mi is good on paper. Sang-woo’s mom tells them that she and her husband won’t be attending the wedding, and she ends up pleading with Sang-mi to let Sang-woo go.

It’s actually really hard to watch Sang-mi endure this, because even though she’s the mom who said this sort of stuff to Shin-young not too long ago, she’s been through more than enough emotional abuse in her life. Sang-woo’s mother tries the mom angle; she asks her to think of her own son, and how people will look at him. Seems to me that well-adjusted kid would do fine even if you decided tomorrow to marry a woman instead.

Sang-woo decides that this is too much, and he defiantly drags Sang-mi out of his apartment. The poetic justice is not lost on Sang-mi, as she flashes back to Min-jae dragging Shin-young away in front of her, just the other night. Yup, mother-son-girlfriend dynamic is pretty much the same, no matter what planet you hail from.

Shin-young turns down offers from her co-workers to celebrate their big story tonight, and decides to go home early and be the one to cook dinner for Min-jae. She sets up an elaborate spread of pasta ingredients, which is a cute domestic side of Shin-young that we rarely get to see.

Meanwhile, Min-jae gets up to leave the studio, and his friends raise hell because they want him to go out with them tonight, and they won’t take no for an answer. Min-jae hesitates, but lets himself get dragged out. I suppose Shin-young did say that she would be home late, but then by your account, you’re still flaking on making her dinner. Flake!

He texts her that he’s going to be late and to eat first if she’s hungry. This is the toughest part of early relationships—the setting yourself up, anticipating this great date, and then getting that call. You can’t be angry because the other person doesn’t know, but then you are angry, because you still put in all this effort. Listen, women have a hard time managing expectations, okay?

Shin-young decides to wait for him, since it’s their last dinner together in the apartment. I have a feeling this is going to get much worse before it gets better.

Over in married land, Da-jung and Ban-seok are eating a lovely sushi dinner, and Da-jung tries to broach the subject of her sister-in-law. Ban-seok hears that his sister asked for all that help, and his reaction is happiness that his sister likes his wife so much. Oy, so clueless this grown man.

He announces happily that his sister will be buying the apartment upstairs, and wow, I am speechless. If you think the sister is bad now…when the commute is one staircase…Da-jung and I both shudder in horror. And yep, that’s the thing that drives her over the edge. She finally lets it all out to Ban-seok.

The argument spills over all the way from the restaurant to their house, and I have to say, although I can see both sides logically, Ban-seok is disappointing me with his failure to see how much it strains Da-jung to be a good wife in the eyes of his family.

Da-jung, tears in her eyes, says that when she thinks of her future, she’s frightened. Ban-seok counters that he didn’t know she was such a selfish person. That cuts to the heart, as Da-jung breaks down and Ban-seok walks away from the argument.

Back at home, Shin-young waits and waits, chomping down on sticks of raw pasta, sticking them in her hair, trying to pass the time while growing increasingly impatient. And then, the kicker: her co-workers end up at the same bar that Min-jae is at, and this is the picture they decide to send to Shin-young:

Ha Min-jae? Meet the doghouse.

Meanwhile at the bar, Min-jae is actually trying to leave, but his friends keep pressuring him to stay. This is probably a universal thing, but it seems to be a very pronounced social pressure in Korea—you can’t be the first to leave a gathering because people get all upset that the mood will be broken, and they literally badger you into staying. I don’t know why this is a thing with Koreans, but it’s inescapable when hanging out with them. Know a Korean? Are one yourself? Yeah, think about it. You’ve been badgered.

Not that this lets Min-jae off the hook; let’s get that straight. Social badgering is one thing, but flaking on your girlfriend to do loveshots with a girl who’s totally hot for your junk is NOT COOL.

Shin-young has a little freak-out, makes a giant mound of pasta which she eats herself, and then decides she has to calm down, so she does some yoga. Heh. She hears Min-jae coming in the door, and the look on her face is a woman preparing for battle. Be afraid. Be very, very afraid.

Min-jae comes in bearing a box of cake and acting like nothing happened. Shin-young gives an excellent cold shoulder, in case you were wondering. It’s sub-zero, the vibe she gives off. Min-jae picks up on it, but doesn’t know why she’s so mad (thinking the pasta dinner for one is the only problem).

Shin-young then gets a cathartic fantasy moment where she rips Min-jae a new one for being out with Senna when he made dinner plans with her.

But then she rationalizes in her head that she can’t be outwardly angry and jealous of a 22-year old; that’s crazy! Well I would argue you’re already feeling crazy, and bottling it up is unhealthy, but I completely empathize with your preference to save face here. And you’ve got the cold shoulder working for you.

Shin-young seals the passive-aggressive deal by going to bed. Min-jae decides it’s something cake and candles will fix. Uh, remember the last time you tried to win her over with candles? You had to dye your hair white because you screwed that up so badly. Will you go blue this time?

He walks in with cake and candlelight, but Shin-young’s not impressed. So he plops down in bed next to her. She jumps up and says he can’t stay, but he just pulls her back to bed and puts his arm around her, saying he’s tired and he’s drunk so he’ll just stay ten minutes.

Aw…darn it. What to do with all this superfluous…righteous…anger….gah, it’s gone. Seriously, why so cute?

Shin-young finally thaws, not because they address the issue or he apologizes, but because she’s inescapably drawn to his charm. This is why friends get so frustrated when you decide the rational thing to do with them, and then do a complete 180 in the presence of your significant other. It’s not logical; it’s love.

As they drift off to sleep in each other’s arms, Shin-young asks Min-jae what he’s thinking.

Min-jae: “Until I met Ban-seok, I was a total troublemaker. But when I met hyung I changed once, and when I met you, I changed again.”
Shin-young: “How?”
Min-jae: “I’ll tell you later.”

I feel like there’s no bigger compliment to pay someone than to attribute a change in your life to their presence, advice, or love. It’s the highest form of praise in my book. So this blew me away, and not just because he is aware of it, but because he knows to say it to her.

Since Min-jae and Shin-young spend the night together, Da-jung and Ban-seok of course have spent their first night apart. In the morning, Da-jung wakes up disappointed that Ban-seok just let her sleep alone in another room, and things are still pretty dicey between them. It’s not going to be easy to solve, this conflict. She seems to be at a total impasse with the entire family, including her husband.

Min-jae and Shin-young wake up in bed together and Min-jae cranks up the charm, saying that even her unwashed face is pretty. Min-jae: “So, we’ve slept together.” Shin-young: “I guess we have.” Min-jae: “I’ll take responsibility. Don’t worry.” Oh, you two and your verbal foreplay. Don’t tease!

Then, as soon as they get up, Min-jae gets a call from Senna. Ack, we just forgave and forgot! Why are you still fielding calls from the skinny boyfriend-stealer from snotville?

And while Min-jae has yet to do anything actually wrong in the realm of cheating, he isn’t exactly fending off Senna’s advances with what could be a few simple words such as “girlfriend’s house” and “slept over at.”

It’s not crazy to assume that he thinks very little of Senna’s flirting because he’s indicated that he’s pretty popular and well-versed in the dating game. And his relative fame does add to that theory. But it’s also not a leap to think that he enjoys the attention and indulges in it, to a harmless degree. I don’t picture Min-jae crossing the line into cheating man-whore territory; I just think he’s young and cute and probably having fun.

And that’s the conundrum that Shin-young’s having in this episode, because when she looks at it from an outward perspective, she knows that Min-jae should be enjoying his youth, his popularity, and his carefree time with friends complete with loveshots and harmless flirting. But as his serious girlfriend, her jealousy of Senna can’t really be compartmentalized in that way. It’s a pickle.

Sang-mi and Sang-woo take a scenic walk along the river, and oh man, scenic walks along water always mean someone’s going to get dumped. At least it’s not the ocean. Go back and look at all your old kdramas. The ocean spells death for couples.

Sure enough, Sang-mi’s brought Sang-woo to the river to break up with him. She’s realized that her life isn’t sad or pathetic, and that she’s got a lot to be thankful for. Okay, that part’s good. She then says that it’s enough for her to live as Min-jae’s mom, and that she’s choosing him over Sang-woo. What? What about that whole other part of your life, as a newly single beautiful woman?

Sang-woo tells her that she shouldn’t be thinking of Min-jae, or even Sang-woo, but herself first. Yay, Sang-woo. But she’s not hearing him, which makes me sad, mostly for her. And then she walks away, leaving him to brood by the river. At home she cries alone, and I know she’s doing that thing where she’s giving up Sang-woo thinking it’s best for him, but that’s just stupid because he loves her, so I’m more annoyed than sympathetic.

At work Shin-young sees Min-jae with Senna yet again, and that girl really needs to take her greedy paws off of Shin-young’s boyfriend. I’m actually starting to get upset, as if I’ve discovered her hanging onto my real friend’s boyfriend’s arm.

Shin-young has a good day at work and goes home to an empty apartment, and imagines Min-jae coming out of his bedroom to greet her after her day. But she looks back and he’s gone. And then she imagines Da-jung coming in the front door, bag of makgulli in hand, wanting to drink away a bad day. Shin-young’s face lights up, and then she sees that no one is there. The way her face falls is heartbreaking. She wonders aloud, “Is this why people get married?”

The moment isn’t meant to make Shin-young seem pathetic or totally alone; it’s more of a comment on how full her life has been lately because of these two people populating her everyday life. Now that they’ve gone, she’s feeling the emptiness. I’ve lived alone and I’ve lived with friends, and I have to say, the silence is palpable. Living alone can make you a little batty.

Then, just as in one of Shin-young’s hallucinations, Da-jung steps right out of her old bedroom, bag in hand, making Shin-young jump right out of her skin.

She answers, “Don’t ever get married. Just live freely and comfortably.” Shin-young can’t figure out if she’s hallucinating. Da-jung says that she couldn’t get any reading done with all the construction going on upstairs, and her sister-in-law’s meddling. She fills her in on the latest family drama, then says longingly, “Lee Shin-young, I’m jealous of you.” Then she cheerily says good-bye and leaves Shin-young wondering whether or not she saw a ghost.

Turns out that Shin-young is doing so well at work that she’s being promoted. Her boss offers her a chance at a foreign correspondent job (which if you remember from way back when, was her original area of study and training). He tells her it’ll be about three years abroad, and she hesitates, turning it down. He tells her to think about it and not lose this opportunity.

Shin-young waits for Min-jae in the hallway, deep in thought about her job offer. When Min-jae comes bounding up to her, she tries but can’t manage to tell him about it. They just make plans to call each other later, and she continues to weigh the decision on her own.

Shin-young goes to see Bu-ki about the matter. She should just start charging by the hour. Bu-ki tells Shin-young in no uncertain terms to just go for it. Shin-young hems and haws that if she leaves, the chance of her returning a single 37-year old woman is 99%. Bu-ki reminds her that the same thing would happen even if she stayed right here. True.

Bu-ki adds: “You didn’t think you’d be thirty-four and single, did you? But life is pretty good, right? Thirty-seven will be the same.” This is what I love about this drama. The message isn’t some idealistic vision of agelessness. It’s about rediscovering yourself at every age, and opening yourself up to encounter new things at every turn. You cannot predict what you will be at age X. And setting yourself up for that only limits you.

Shin-young muses that it will mean the end of her relationship with Min-jae. Bu-ki simply says that even if he’s by her side, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll stay together, and even if they’re apart, it doesn’t mean they’ll break up. Shin-young thinks that these sorts of crossroads usually pop up when it’s time to break up. Bu-ki just zens that the future is unknown and they could be apart, then come back around to each other. She adds for emphasis: “The world is wide, there are lots of men, and you’re valuable!”

Over at Sang-mi’s house (oh, how I wish Sang-mi was present for Bu-ki’s talk just now), she tells Min-jae that she broke up with Sang-woo. Min-jae is actually disappointed in his mom for taking the coward’s way out, asking her why she can’t be brave like Shin-young. Sang-mi thinks about it, and replies that she must not love Sang-woo the way that Shin-young loves Min-jae. Actually, I think the difference has nothing to do with love and everything to do with self-perception and choosing not to be a victim of circumstance.

Min-jae decides he needs to yell some more, so he goes to see Sang-woo and demands to know how he can say he loves Sang-mi if he was just going to give up like that. Sang-woo explains that he’s waiting for Sang-mi to come back around and change her mind, which is not good enough for Min-jae’s grand-gesture sensibility.

Min-jae: “You don’t know how to love. You didn’t know how to love Shin-young back then, and you’re the same with my mom now.” He goes on to accuse Sang-woo of chickening out once the divorce was final, and Sang-woo counters that Min-jae’s still a kid for not understanding and accepting his mom’s difficult decisions. Min-jae says it’s Sang-woo’s responsibility to change his mom’s mind; Sang-woo replies that Min-jae should worry about changing Shin-young’s mind.

Wait…what? Aw man! This is how Min-jae is going to find out? From Sang-woo? Gah! I hate this! Why of all people is he hearing about Shin-young’s job offer from her ex? This doesn’t make sense. Why would she have consulted Sang-woo on the matter at all? Don’t make me start the bitter ranting, Show. We’re so close to the end. We were doing so well.

Sang-woo tells Min-jae about Shin-young’s offer to go abroad (grumble, grumble) and adds that when she was given a similar chance before, she was more than willing to leave him for the opportunity to advance her career. But this time the girl who used to be so bold is hesitating because of Min-jae. Sang-woo says outright that it must be because she doesn’t have faith in the relationship. Which is ballsy of you to say, Sang-woo, since you TOTALLY DUMPED HER when you were in Min-jae’s shoes ten years ago.

Time for a motorcycle ride, as Min-jae rides out his angst, and then contemplates what to do. Meanwhile, Shin-young decides to take the job, and finds out that she’ll be going to Helsinki, Finland (random). She notes sadly that it’s “a cold and foreign land.”

Is there a lot of news in Finland? Are there Korean people there? I don’t really know much about the foreign press in Korea, but that seems like a randomly odd choice. I would’ve rather seen them choose a currently relevant place, even if it dates the show to a specific time.

Min-jae asks Shin-young to meet him in the fated hallway, and they stand in silence for a while, as Min-jae tries to steel himself. Finally, choking on the words, he tells her to go. Good for you. Stepping up in the way that Sang-woo couldn’t do for her before.

Shin-young: “Do you really want me to go?”
Min-jae (lump in his throat): “Yes.”
Shin-young: “Even if it’ll be three years before I’m back?”
Min-jae: “I still want you to go.”
Shin-young (tears in her eyes): “Okay, but I don’t want to go with a heavy heart. Let’s break up.”
Min-jae: “Why do we have to?”
Shin-young: “In three years’ time we can’t say we’ll feel the same way. And the place you belong…I don’t think it’s next to me.”
Min-jae: “I’ll wait. Go and come back.”
Shin-young: “You can’t commit to a future me three years from now. And I want to leave comfortably. Let’s break up.”
Min-jae: “Is this really what you want?”
Shin-young: “Yes. I really mean it.”

She turns to leave and Min-jae grabs her hand. She turns back one last time and thanks him for broaching the subject, and says, “Be well” as she lets go of his hand and walks away.

It’s the same hallway where they first said “I love you,” holding hands in the same way, and now it’s the place where they say good-bye.

Min-jae watches her go, as we watch his heart shatter into tiny, tiny pieces.

I don’t think Shin-young is doing the classic kdrama martyr thing. I think she’s being pragmatic, if overly so. Truthfully, I would be doing the exact same thing when faced with a three-year separation. So I think she’s being careful to guard her heart, realistic about time and distance, and mindful of Min-jae’s age.

That said, I don’t really believe that either of them said everything that they really mean. They might mean what they said, but that wasn’t the whole story. I think that even if the break-up holds, they’ll have to revisit this conversation.

What I don’t want: a three-year fast-forward. I know, we’re probably going to get one. But I really, really don’t want a neat little bow-tied fast-forward happy ending. It would ring false for a drama that stayed so realistic and fresh in its approach to relationships. I care more about how they’re going to solve the problem in the here and now, and how that will cause the characters to change and grow. I’ll somehow feel cheated if we skip that and go straight from angst to…and then they are magically happy and together three years later! Seriously, if that happens, I might poke an eye out.

If you spoil me, I will smite thee and thy village!

See you for the finale…sob.


62 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. mememomo

    Thanks girlfriday for the recap, you are doing an amazing job. Love this drama!

  2. memyselfandi

    omg. whats gonna happen next?! MUST. KNOW. NOW!

  3. etsy

    Thank you so much for the recap! I’ve already watched the drama, but javabeans’ and your recaps are always so much FUN to read!

  4. asianromance

    thank you so much for the recap!! hahaha you’re speaking to the Show, like it’s a real person. hahaha. i am frustrated with the guys in this episode! and Dajung’s situation makes me scared to get married. I nearly had a heart attack to hear that Ban-seok’s horrible sister is moving upstairs.

  5. goo

    I laughed so hard at the line “The ocean spells death for couples” 🙂 Hilarious recap!

  6. Yuki

    Thanks for the recap, girlfriday!

    Now, I know Min Jae didn’t cheat on Shin Young or anything, but it does bother me a little that he doesn’t put the effort to push Senna away.

    I think would’ve just gone to that restaurant and joined my friends for a celebration if they sent me a picture like that. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not gonna walk in front of him and sweep everything off the table. I’d just eat dinner with my friends as a gesture that if he doesn’t feel the need to fend off social pressure and eat with me, I’m not obliged to stay home and wait for him either. I deserve a night out too.

    Yeah, I also was like, wth, Finland? What could there be in Finland that would bottle significant press in Korea? They could’ve at least sent her to Vancouver to do a 2010 Winter Olympics special 8D

    If I were in Shin Young’s shoes, I probably would’ve broken up too. But I don’t think I would’ve be so cold about it. I’d offer to stay together until the day I leave and add that if we still think fondly of each other after 3 years, we could get back together. But that’s no fun in kdrama-land, right?

    And isn’t this your last recap, girlfriday? I’m gonna miss your recaps a LOT ;___;

  7. diane

    @5 goo I agree. That line cracked me up! That was a great recap!

    Hope you plan on doing more!

  8. Sere


    I love this show sooo much and I loved your recap. Thanks!

    @5 goo, @7 diane

    That line cracked me up as well

  9. agalang

    it’s really a treat for me to read your reviews. every insight is a spot-on analysis of the situation.

    looking forward to reading your witty, funny, entertaining last review of the drama.


  10. 10 jenny

    “What I don’t want: a three-year fast-forward. I know, we’re probably going to get one.”

    I don’t want to spoil anything so I’ll just say, you don’t have to worry about the 3-year fast forward.

  11. 11 bug

    Excellent recap – love the writing style and commentary. You made me smile, laugh, and think. I am with you with the bitter ranting. Why, oh why, the cliche kdrama moments. I hope the next ep explores the relationship at a deeper level than a simple: three years later, hug, and no real explanation of how they will manage the relationship from that point.

  12. 12 21today

    thanks for the recap!!! i really enjoy reading it.
    wow i’d never notice that the ocean is where all the break up scenes happen loll

  13. 13 Molly

    Ahhh, girlfriday, I’m going to miss you! Thanks for all the wonderful recaps you have done so far. They were so fun to read and the show was just so fun to watch. I hope you come back and guest blog for Dramabeans sometime. 🙂

  14. 14 shinhyesungluv

    What is this? MIn-jae is so not being a good boyfriend right now.

  15. 15 Snikki

    @girlfriday, thank you so much for all the wonderful recaps! I hope to read more from you. Please come back… but no pressure. 🙂

  16. 16 MEIKO**** ^-^

    Girlfriday! Funny! am lol at all of your remarks…^_^ especially this:
    “We should all leave such letters lying around in strategic places for bosses, mothers-in-law, insecure boyfriends/girlfriends…it would save a lot of time and energy in the long run.” AGREE! AGREE! LOL!!!!


  17. 17 julier

    @girlfriday- your recaps are wonderful! So funny! Thanks so much for all your work and I hope you continue to write for dramabeans.

  18. 18 mimi

    What I love about this drama is the friendship of the 3 main characters. It’s endearing how they support one another.
    But this drama lost its steam for me around ep.11 (plus, it’s hard to find episodes with Eng. subs). I’m still reading the recaps but watching it got too boring. Sorry, fans.

  19. 19 peanut butter

    puahahaha, i had to laugh at the whole “can’t be the first to leave a gathering”!! so true, unfortunately!! oh koreans, why are we like this? who knows! and thanks for the recap!

  20. 20 amohoneycomb

    Thank you for such amazing and funny recaps! I can’t wait to see what happens for the last episode!

    I totally agree with you on how the relationships in this drama seem realistic and I hope that they keep it that way for the ending. I don’t want it to end!!

  21. 21 Icarusfalls

    I was laughing so hard and loud at several parts in your recap that my family thought I had finally gone over the edge!! Thanks so much for this girlfriday!! ^_^

  22. 22 mariolawpanda

    please please PLEASE let there be no three-years-later nonsense in this drama cause i really love the story and that would totally be a heartbreaker. LOL. i love the recap. random outburst: i love Bu-Ki! seriously.

  23. 23 jusash

    hahahah …. thank you. these recaps are just as addictive as watching the show for me.

    LOVE the flavour of your writing and candid insights, girlfriday === are you going to back to recap more dramas? please say yes! 🙂

  24. 24 kaedejun

    omo omo omo – i was so scared that i was going to reach the end of your recap b/c THAT’S NOT HOW I WANTED IT TO ENDDDD!!! 🙁

    i’m pissed at minjae too – i’d think that a guy who worked so hard to convince shinyoung starts acting careless with another girl is just plain wrong!

    but forgive me if i still like my fantasy happy endings – after all, they’re an alternate reality that lets me escape the horrors of dating life, and so i’d like to think they’ll get a happy ending!!

    urgh – but if he ends up going to finland with her i don’t know what to do…

  25. 25 doozy

    Thanks so much, girlfriday! Your recaps always bring a smile to my face and many LOLs!

    I completely agree with julier! I, too, hope that you’ll continue to contribute your insightful and witty writing for dramabeans.

  26. 26 Kukilas

    Thanks for the awesome recap, girlfriday!

    I was aware that scenes by the river are always a sign of doom or seriousness in kdrama land, but did not realize that being by the ocean took it up a whole other level. I wonder if its a parallel in terms of ocean water having salt content, just like tears?

    After watching this episode, I was super sad at the end, watching Min Jae’s eyes fill with tears. Although, that Senna girl really, really irritated me to no end. He really could have fended off her advances in a better way. He seemed to enjoy it somewhat, which was really irritating. I know she was the one throwing herself on him, but seriously, how hard is it to pry her clammy hands off his arm? She reminded me of a leech.

    The one thing I hated about the episode was the sudden appearance of Min Jae’s motorcycle. He has a car through out the series and all of a sudden he is on a racing bike? Seriously, where has this been all series long? You would think this would have made an earlier appearance, like when he was courting her during the 10 day relationship time, so he could have taken advantage of having her hug him from behind on the bike. To me, the bike is another cliche in Kdrama land that does not bode well.

    Anyway, I hope we will get to read more recaps from you in the future on another drama. We will miss your wit and humor after this series’ end. Thanks for all the past recaps. I really enjoyed them.

  27. 27 maria

    i was planning on quoting everything you said and commenting on each of those, but i ended up copy-pasting and commenting on 8 (EIGHT! lol) chunks of lines from the recap and the comment literally wouldn’t add anymore. LOLOLOLOL!! 😀
    i guess i just wanted to say THANK YOU (and thank you girlfriday’s parents for erm.. reproducing and stuff) . your recaps are not only witty and funny and engaging, but your insight into the characters is stellar! let me at least say, this:
    I feel like there’s no bigger compliment to pay someone than to attribute a change in your life to their presence, advice, or love. It’s the highest form of praise in my book. So this blew me away, and not just because he is aware of it, but because he knows to say it to her.
    —-oy, the insight, it keeeeells meee. lines like this are what makes me say that some part of me is truly truly funnier, more appreciative of wit, of wisdom, more insightful, and more aware of the values and thoughts i’ve always carried, but never verbalized. so as far as high praise goes– that one’s for you. 🙂

    THANK YOU for being raised on awesome juice! is this your last TWWSWTM recap? coz you alternate with sarahbeans, right? *coughcough* please don’t leave us pick another drama pleas please and recap please pleeeaaassee * cough* …MAN, there’s something in my throat. sorry *coughcough*

  28. 28 Soni

    I just finished watching episode 12 with the wedding. I really like the flowers that Shin-young has on her head during the ceremony. Is there a website where you could order them? Or is usually brought at a local store with fresh flowers? I’d appreciateeee it alot if someone could tell me. Thank you in advance!!!

  29. 29 Kelela

    Again, thank you.

    These recaps have been my favorite. Excellent job guys!

  30. 30 sleeplessinwgtn

    The ending of this episode is so ‘Dal-Ja Spring’.

  31. 31 deannadsc

    Girlfriday…thanks for the great recaps & for making me “LAUGH OUT LOUD” w/ your witty & funny writing style!!!
    Am missing TWWSWTM already, though I’ve finished watching it RAW…your & JB’s recaps have made me understand the drama more + your insights(&side-comments!!!LOL!!!) has added to my understanding of each character’s flaws & positive traits!!!
    the BUKI character is so WISE…wish I had a BFF like her!!!

  32. 32 giddygirl108

    If you spoil me, I will smite thee and thy village!

    Ok seriously, that above comment made me laugh out loud. Your commentary was especially witty and lovely today…love it.

    I can definitely understand Shin-young’s decision, especially that crazy lil (insert your choice of a degrading term for that Senna girl here) being all over Min-jae in this episode. She realizes that he’s at an age where he should be having fun and experiencing those things she had also experienced at that age. She wouldn’t want him to wait for her and give up on other potential’s as well. Binding someone like that doesn’t seem like real love and she’s really showing him that the best thing she could do for him is 1) stay true to herself aka take the job offer and 2) not constrain him just b/c she’s out pursuing her dreams. Cheezy, I know…but I had to type it.

  33. 33 girlfriday

    @ maria: Never fear! JB and I are working on a joint venture recap for the finale, involving pulleys, levers, and Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle. It’s either going to be awesome or a total trainwreck, but either way, it’ll be EPIC.

    Also you guys have all made me feel very much at home here, so I don’t have plans to leave any time soon! Am waiting to watch first eppys of the upcoming dramas to pick my next project. Have some ideas, but will keep you in the dark for various sadistic reasons. 🙂

    Thanks again to everyone for your lovely words and infectious enthusiasm!

  34. 34 Rossi

    I’m a little bit afraid that by the end of this drama recapping, I might have to offer to name my unborn children after you b/c omg, why so awesome!?!?

    I was trying to decide which quotes I want to use and comment on but then I realize that would be pretty much like 2/3 of the thing and I have a feeling that dramabean’s comment box might frown at me tso I shall refrain and just say as always that I read this recap with glee, delight and embarrassing gasps of squeals and “oohs” and “ahhs”.

    I didn’t like this ep. very much. In fact, the script writings got rather wonky for me after 13 b/c consistencies were showing up left and right and suddenly typical k-drama cliches started showing up such as MJ’s bike riding scene. When and where the hell did he get that thing? I felt the whole sequence was just a fangirling service of showing Kim Bum looking good and angsty while weaving thru traffic.

    And my heart went out to Sang Mi in this ep. She’s really not the evil mother in law, in fact, besides her initial bitcess-ing (as expected) at ShinYoung, I thought she showed remarkable understanding and acceptance when present with facts regarding the status of her son’s relationship. I also quite adore the mother-son’s dynamic b/c these two just have a great channel of communication.

    I’m so gonna miss you after the last ep. *tears!*

  35. 35 bluelime

    thanks for the wonderful recap!! =)

    i enjoyed reading your recaps and i am looking forward to the joint recap for episode 16!! =)

  36. 36 snow

    glad to know you’ll be doing more recaps, girlfriday! i’ve enjoyed your witty style of writing very much. love the ‘smite thee and thy village!’ line! hahaha.

    good work. looking forward to see what you and javabeans will come up with for the finale.

    incidentally, do you have a favorite character from the drama? bu-ki, perhaps?

  37. 37 deeta

    Girlfriday, I’m sure you know this but you are HILARIOUS! Love your recaps! I can’t wait to see you recapping other shows.

    By any chance, do you have your own blog?

  38. 38 ghian

    argggh .. 1 more and it’s also gone!
    i have’nt calmed myself until now because of the ending of WUAS!
    please .. no fast forward for here too!
    🙁 xD

  39. 39 Juwo

    “The ocean spells death for couples.” – I think that just made my day girlfriday!

    Will definitely miss your lovely, witty recaps when TWWSWTM ends, but am already excitedly anticipating your next drama =].

  40. 40 Lemon

    thanks dramabeans for this awesome recap! oh no whats gonna happen next? D:
    ahh poor kim bum…

  41. 41 Lemon

    oh sorry, i meant thank you girlfriday! 😀 hehe

  42. 42 D

    thanks.. as always it’s awesome!

    praying that your next drama pick coincide with mine.. 🙂

  43. 43 dzigh

    thanks girlfriday..

    this recap has really made my day 🙂

  44. 44 Free

    excellent job! Love all your insights…….e.g.
    “You had to dye your hair white because you screwed that up so badly. Will you go blue this time?”
    LOL…..can’t stop laughing…
    It’s hilarious!
    Love your work!!!
    Will definitely follow your next pick.

  45. 45 useless_ivory

    Girlfriday, you’re amazing. This recap had me cracking up, but also gave some great insight into cultural perceptions, etc. I haven’t been able to watch the show at all (can’t find the English subs), but am avidly following your and JavaBeans’ recaps. Hope that shows what a great job you two are doing. 🙂

  46. 46 jusash

    @ 34 Rossi

    Totally with you on the inconsistencies showing, and Sang Mi.

    My beef is also with ep 13-15 continuity – in character development, in plot expectations. And if they introduce a time-leap and more problems at this late point with one mere eppie to go) – they should prepare real rock-solid justifications to map everything out to some convincing satisfaction.

    Sang Mi:
    I didn’t like her character much (some of her low blows re: SY) even if I have empathy for SM.
    But she is sure turning out to be a pretty cool mom with her tolerance level. I didn’t expect so muchaccepting open-mindedness so soon.

    I know some people had issues with Sang Mi expectations == ie her asking SY to ensure nothing more happens to bring the relationship up to the next total- intimacy level.
    And so her son won’t be forced to assume responsibility —– this is laughably naive in itself. (hullo, has anyone heard of contraception? or practising safe responsible sex?)

    But that aside – KUDOS to Sang Mi. She didn’t say no or oppose (in part thanks to Bu Ki’s counselling, and also her own experience with Sang Woo’s mom).

    To Sang Mi’s credit , I’d say even her endorsement for SY-MJ to continue dating is a BIG generous concession on Sang Mi’s part. Seriously which normal mom would be thrilled her son is dating a woman 10 yrs older?

  47. 47 Prosopopoeiae


    I bow down to you. You are awesome-covered awesome with awesome filling. I really cannot begin to tell you how much I’ve enjoyed your recaps, and Javabeans-ssi is such a goddess for bringing you to us. I got into TWWSWTM because of you, and thanks to your recaps I’ve alternated between crying from your insightful, poetic musings, and choking up a lung from hysterical laughter. At one point I was laughing so hard that I threw up in my mouth a little. I am not ashamed of this!

    I’m glad you’re staying to recap some more dramas. Please pick whatever you like, although if you wanted to take a gander at *cough* Oh! My Lady *cough* I would give you my other lung.

  48. 48 girlfriday

    @ Rossi: My advice is to name the boy “Friday” and the girl “Girl,” since the other way around would be confusing.

    @ snow: I cannot pick a favorite, since it would be like choosing between my children…wait, I don’t have any kids. My favorite is Shin-young, because she is flawed and honest and brave and willing to put her heart on the line. I am closer to Bu-ki in my thinking, but similarly guarded, which makes me envy Shin-young more.

    @ deeta: I have tried to blog on my own in the past and failed miserably to do up-keep, as not having an administrator makes me give in to procrastination and debauchery. Javabeans keeps me from the procrastinating. Still working on the debauchery.

    @ Prosopopoeiae: My cat has a similar problem. I hear they make a treat for that. Also, the offer is tempting but currently have two working lungs, so I’ll wait to cash in when one of them blows. Or maybe you’d kindly offer half your liver, for when the debauchery inevitably catches up with me.

  49. 49 Chelsea

    I feel bad for this drama’s rating. But oh well, that happened before with YB’s ratings too. Going back, the ending is a bit familiar and (not entirely) a bit random, it reminds me of Dalja’s ending. I have mixed feelings about “after _ years…” finale. But to make it more realistic, I guess. I just hope instead of the no writing but patiently waiting, letting fate decide for us thing… Kinda ruins the appeal for me. I hope for great ending. 🙂 &&I know I wouldn’t be disappointed no matter what, because whatever the script will be — that’s still KIM SANG BUM there.

  50. 50 Sokri

    @45 useless_ivory:

    You can find the subs here:
    However, you have to get a viikii account and a gmail account first, then send “palikero” a private message on viikii with your email adress. He will then send you a link to the soft subs.

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