Smile: Episodes 34-35
These two were fun, sweet episodes. Nothing earth shattering but sweet and clean. Kind of like the next door puppy when she comes up to me for a belly scratch. I don’t love her like my dog but she’s sweet enough to smile at and play with for a few minutes. Smile has become like that for me. I don’t especially look forward to it nor do I think about it after the fact, but it’s a nice sweet moment while it’s in front of me. So onward with the recap!
SONG OF THE DAY
Jo Won-sun – “Do Re Mi Fa Sol La Ti Do” [ Download ]
Geum-ja comes home to share the “good” news about Jung-in and is greeted with delight from Sang-hoon. Grandpa Man-bok tries to reign in his excitement but giggles like a schoolgirl once his less than enthused daughter-in-law leaves the room.
Over at the Seos, a dumbfounded Jung-in tells everyone about her encounter with Geum-ja. Hyun-soo is obviously elated with the news and the two lovebirds hug each other at the thought of their marriage. But the parents are less than thrilled.
Joo-hee: How about me? You don’t care about my approval?
Hyun-soo: It’s alright. I know you like me.
Jung-kil: Wait! Baek. Geum. Ja. I know her best. It could be some sort of a decoy scheme.
It’s pretty funny that Jung-kil is the one that knows Geum-ja best. But then again, they’ve done a bit of a switch-a-roo in their characters so I guess it’s not that surprising.
When Jung-kil heads to the Kangs, he finds Geum-ja moaning with her head wrapped, apparently waiting for Hyun-soo to find her ailing. Jung-kil takes out his own head wrap and then oddly asks her a couple of wedding vows about loving Jung-in. (It’s a little weird.)
Meanwhile, the two lovebirds are back to their lovey-dovy selves, basking in each other presence. If they recited a sonnet, it would have been perfect. The moment, however, is one shared not only by the two lovers but their third-wheeling comic relief, Sung-joon.
Sung-joon: Is this being good [to your family]?
Jung-in: Did I say that I’d be good today? I said later.
Hyun-soo: Why are you home early today of all days when you usually come home late?
Jung-in: If you really loved and cared for us, shouldn’t you pretend that you have diarrhea and lock yourself up in the bathroom?
And as much as Hyun-soo and Jung-in’s affections give me gag reflex, I’d much rather have this than the over the top angst. On top of that, diarrhea. Hee-hee. Why do I still find toilet jokes funny?
Geum-ja gets her wish as Hyun-soo returns home and joins them for the morning exercises. His dad tries to give him hints to be good to his mother, but Hyun-soo can’t get over the excitement of marrying Jung-in. When Jung-in enters into the house as a ray of sunlight, he drops his mother’s hand like a lump of coal to run to his future bride.
Seeing the men of her household fawn over the new woman of the house, Geum-ja is determined to make things as difficult as possible for her. She insists that the two families have a traditional pre-engagement family meeting. (It’s usually where the parents meet for the first time, exchange pleasantries, and give their blessing to the couple.) Everyone else is surprised since the Kangs and Seos pretty much know everything there is to know about each other. It’s easy to see the difficult road ahead…
The torture continues in the kitchen, as Geum-ja starts Jung-in down a ridiculous line of questioning to “test” her knowledge of Hyun-soo. Thankfully, Hyun-soo is nearby to land a helping hand.
Geum-ja: What’s his favorite color?
Jung-in: I think it’s dark blue.
Geum-ja: What about his favorite food?
Jung-in: Bibimbap, one that you mix for him.
Geum-ja: In the 7th grade, what was his class #? You don’t know?
Jung-in: Um… Class #1.
Geum-ja: Then… in High School, what was the worst he ever did on a test?
Jung-in: Four hundredth?
Jung-in: That was a joke! Fortieth.
Oh… mother-in-laws. Jung-in laughs along at the crazy antics, for now. But her mood changes when Geum-ja gives her a list of things to bring when she gets married. (Traditionally in Korea, the man provides the house and the woman brings everything needed inside the house.) The list is 2 pages long, and not because of big font, because Jung-in can’t believe that it can even all fit in the house.
Hyun-soo decides to take the opportunity to do some good for his in-laws. He buys a new suit for Jung-kil, who is loving the attention from his soon to be son-in-law, even commenting that Hyun-soo looks more like him that his own son. And Hyun-soo gives some money to Joo-hee for a new outfit along with preparation money for the wedding.
Meanwhile, love is in the air for some more couples. Grandpa Man-bok has definitely changed with the knowledge of his illness and not only decides to buy meat (*shock*) for the family meeting but hangs around the restaurant to get a glimpse of So-nyu (*double shock*).
And the news of the wedding has put a fire in Sung-joon’s loin as he hopes to move forward on his relationship with Ji-soo. She promises to grant him a wish if he makes 10 putts in a row, which makes him even friskier.
At the family meeting, Geum-ja is seemingly all prepared, coming to the location early and wearing her pink hanbok. But the Seos one up the Kangs as they enter the room, fully dressed for the occasion.
As they start talk about the date of the wedding, Geum-ja announces that they need to get engaged first (which is traditionally paid by the woman’s family) , shocking everyone at the table. This leads Geum-ja and Joo-hee down the rabbit hole as the two spew venom at each other about the wedding preparations.
Jung-in takes her mother outside and figures out that her mother was talking big because she received money from Hyun-soo. Unfortunately, Geum-ja overhears and all hell breaks loose, breaking up any hopes of a cordial luncheon.
Jung-kyung’s pragmatic nature takes over as she declares that they’ll just have to put together whatever they can with the money they have, if Jung-in still wants to get married. She and Sung-joon decide that they’ll come up with 10,000 won for the wedding.
It’s a far cry from the 100,000 won of Jung-in’s engagement ring and the writer makes the contrast pretty clear by having Han-se return the money to Hyun-soo. Meanwhile, Jung-kil drinks away his guilt and regret as he realizes that he’s unable to provide for his daughter’s wedding. But Jung-in comes to console her dad.
Jung-in: I’m the one who’s sorry. I probably spent atleast half of your fortune. The sports car, all the clothes I ever wanted, visiting every corner of the globe. If I added up all the money that I took from you, saying that I was going to buy books, I could have probably built a national library… Anyways, why did you suddenly give us your blessing, even giving up the house?
Jung-kil: Because that Hyun-soo seemed like he loved you more than me. You say that you received a lot from me. But honestly, I’ve never given you everything I had. But Hyun-soo would give you everything, whether it’s $10 or $1000. It’s not about the money, but the heart and the time. I think he’ll give you everything. That’s what people say… that this is love.
Jung-in: Dad, you’ll give me everything you have now also.
Jung-kil: But I have nothing to give now. I don’t even have enough money to get you married.
Jung-in: I’m not going to get married until you earn back all of your money! I’m going to ask you to buy enough furniture to fill Hyun-soo’s house, and for a new sports car, and even a new house.
It’s a lovely little scene as the father-daughter pair keep their fun light attitude, while fully sharing their heart. I especially appreciate this scene, because it’s times like this when the drama really shines, rather than going the full on angsty route.
Hearing about Jung-in’s desire to push back the wedding, Sang-hoon turns to her for help. He ends up telling her about Grandpa Man-bok’s condition and pleads with her to get married earlier. The news turns her into a teary puddle but also brings about a new Jung-in. One who’s focus is on Operation Shotgun Wedding.
She returns to the Kang house in the morning as cheery Jung-in and immediately goes to grandpa Man-bok for the morning bow (traditionally given after the wedding).
Jung-in: As you can see, I have nothing to give. So there’s nothing I want. I just want to be your family, grandpa. Please give me a green track suit!
It’s as though the broken family luncheon and requests to push back the wedding is a distant memory, as she asks about having the engagement at the deokbokki place on Sunday. Geum-ja is flabbergasted but Man-bok takes the opportunity to declare that Jung-in should get married under the exact same condition as Geum-ja, who basically brought nothing but Hyun-soo in her belly.
Jung-in tries to act coy but she has a plan in place. She put the moves on Hyun-soo and just when Geum-ja walks in on them, Jung-in throws down Hyun-soo for a passionate kiss.
Geum-ja is shocked with Jung-in’s forcefulness but Hyun-soo is more than happy with the chain of events, even trying to play hooky from work and spend the day with Jung-in, wearing his cute little socks. But she won’t hear of it and tells Hyun-soo to go to work. He picks up on the signs that he’s being used as a pawn in Operation Shotgun Wedding, but Jung-in uses her feminine wiles to eventually push him off to work.
With Jung-in and Sang-hoon sharing the secret about Man-bok’s illness, they team up together for Operation Shotgun Wedding, which leads Sang-hoon to the deokbokki store for some convincing. He fawns over them, butters them up, apologizes, and even puts himself down in order to set a wedding date.
Jung-in goes to the hospital to speak to her sister about donating her kidney to Grandpa Man-bok, realizing that it’s the only viable option he has left. Jung-kyung is dead set against it and leaves her sister in a huff.
Hyun-soo is at work in body but his thoughts are focused on Jung-in’s words from the morning, expecting something special when he gets home. Han-se has learned his fate after the English hunting incident and knows that he no longer can get Jung-in back. He tries to make Hyun-soo nervous, but it’s more amusing than anything else.
Much to Hyun-soo’s chagrin, the evening consists of grandpa time as Jung-in and Sang-hoon are solely focused on keeping grandpa Man-bok healthy and happy. With Jung-in in the house, Geum-ja is the odd man out as she listens in their laughter from outside, ironically sitting in front of Jung-in’s stain glass window. It could be cruel fate but her dragonlady face does seem to melt a little as she hears her happy family.
With the men of the households pushing the marriage along, Hyun-soo works on getting the two moms on board. He melts his mother’s heart with sweet words of love: You’re the only one in the world I can call mom. Even though I share my love with someone else, you’re the person I’ve loved the longest in my life.
He then heads to the deokbokki store to melt another heart. This time with a (very very cheesy) poem: You and I are one. We are family. Love. Love. L-O-V-E.
Hyun-soo takes his family to a photography studio for a family picture and for a little surprise for Jung-in.
Hyun-soo: Jung-in. I haven’t actually asked you to marry me yet. Right? Marrying me means you have to live forever with not only Kang Hyun-soo, but with my grandpa, father, and mother. No matter what happens, let’s cry, laugh, enjoy, and persevere together. Marry me. Be my family.
After Jung-in nods yes, the other two men take a flower from Geum-ja’s bouquet for their own proposal.
Sang-hoon: Jung-in. Be my daughter-in-law.
Man-bok: My granddaughter-in-law. Congratulations.
Geum-ja gives some dirty looks over at Jung-in, but stays quiet during the process, which is probably all she can give at this point. It’s a sweet scene and a sweet moment for the family.
After a full day of family, the couple tries to spend a little quality time kissing on the street corner. (Dark alleys are the best places for a kiss. Everybody looks good under the moonlight.) But Jung-kil interrupts them and takes them back home.
Back at home, there is another kissing couple for Jung-kil to interrupt. Sung-joon is excited after completing 10 putts in a row because he finally gets his wish. But when Jung-kil walks into the house and demands to know what’s going on, his first reaction is to ask Ji-soo, “Why didn’t you lock the door!” (HAHAHA!! I’ve missed you Lee Chun-hee!)
When Jung-kil talks about how to choose a mate: good family, good school, good background, Sung-joon immediately brings up Jung-in’s lack of schooling compared to her Ph.D. fiance. Before the conversation can get any harsher, a furious Jung-kyung walks in.
Jung-in’s initial test results must have come back positive because Jung-kyung is upset about the possibility of Jung-in donating her kidney. And Man-bok’s condition is worsening by the minute as he has a hard time waking up in the morning and has bouts of pain during the day. As he heads out of the house, Hyun-soo runs into him and drives him to the hospital. After hearing about the visit to the hospital, Sung-joon follows out after his father. Hyun-soo realizes something’s going on seeing his dad’s worried face, no matter how often Sung-joon tells him nothing is wrong.
Hyun-soo is unable to leave the hospital and decides to wait to get some answers from Jung-kyung, when he sees his fiance walking around in a patient gown. Once he hears that she’s taking tests to donate her kidney, he pretty much figures out that it’s connected to his grandfather.
Jung-in is unable to hold in the information and tells Hyun-soo about grandpa Man-bok’s illness, leaving him dumbfounded and leaving herself sobbing with tears.
I’ve been glossing over the Man-bok/Joon-bae/So-nyu love triangle quite a bit, so here’s my new cents. It looks like So-nyu is genuinely touched by Man-bok’s change towards her. She’s still happy to receive the money but the warm milk that he offers her seems to have done a number on her. Man-bok and Joon-bae are lifelong friends so I don’t expect their friendship to waver over a girl, especially when Joon-bae finds out that his best friend is dying. I do love a good bromance and like seeing older people falling in love, so I hope they make this storyline a bit more interesting in the remaining 10 episodes. (Disclaimer: I’ve finished watching the series so I know what happens but I’m pretending to not know while I write this.)
While rewatching these two episodes, I fell in love with Lee Min-jung all over again. I just think she develops great rapport with her fellow actors. I had always thought she had more chemistry with Lee Min-ho in Boys Over Flowers than Gu Hye-sun (don’t shoot me) and I think she’s just one of those actors who has chemistry with everyone. Her connection with Jung Kyung-ho goes without saying. But she’s shined on screen with almost all of her other costars: making us believe that she really did like her ex-almost-husband Han-se, that she truly loves her scheming father Jung-kil, that she grew up with her immature brother Sung-joon, and I especially loved her scenes with Sang-hoon in these two episodes as they covered each others’ worries about grandpa Man-bok.
Overall, the quality of the acting has been quite solid in the series. Lee Min-Jung, Jung Kyung-ho, Lee Chun-hee, Lee Kyu-han, and even the two dads (Kang Suk-woo and Chu Ho-jin) have done well with what they’ve been given, giving us the opportunity to empathize and love their respective characters, not matter how schizophrenic or one dimensional they may be.
- Smile: Episodes 32-33
- Smile: Episodes 30-31
- Smile: Episodes 28-29
- Smile: Episode 27
- Smile: Episode 26
- Smile: Episode 25
- Smile: Episode 24
- Smile: Episode 23
- Smile: Episode 22
- Smile: Episode 21
- Smile: Episode 20
- Smile: Episode 19
- Smile: Episode 18
- Smile: Episode 17
- Smile: Episodes 15-16
- Smile extended to 46 episodes
- Smile: Episodes 13-14
- Smile: Episodes 11-12
- Smile: Episodes 9-10
- Smile: Episodes 7-8
- Smile: Episode 6
- Smile: Episode 5
- Smile: Episode 4
- Smile: Episode 3
- Smile: Episodes 1 & 2