Drama Recaps
It’s Okay, Daddy’s Girl: An overview
by | January 30, 2011 | 76 Comments

It’s been a while since I wrote about It’s Okay, Daddy’s Girl, but, as noted in this prior thread, despite the many obvious flaws, the drama has had an inexplicable hold on me — and some of you, too.

The drama ended a week and a half ago quietly (its finale ratings were in the vicinity of 11%, a series high), and truth be told, it’s not a show to have a lasting impression. But for whatever reason, I found its 17-episode run easily watchable despite its numerous weaknesses.

Since I don’t relish the idea of doing a straight recap of the past 14 episodes, the following is more an overview of the series as a whole, which will include spoilers. Fyi!

SONG OF THE DAY

It’s Okay, Daddy’s Girl OST – “가슴이 말해” (My Heart Speaks) sung by Kang Sung, the actor who plays Jin-gu. [ Download ]

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 
THE PLOT

When I’d last left off with the Episode 2 & 3 recaps, an innocent father had been arrested for manslaughter while the real killer (spoiled, veering-on-psychotic rich boy Jong-seok) had covered his tracks. Now Daddy Eun lies in the hospital from an aneurysm triggered by the stress of his arrest, leaving his family desperate for hope that he will recover.

Older sister Ae-ryung is swayed by the generous actions of Jin-gu, the playboy who must prove to his father that he’s turned his irresponsible ways around or face being financially cut off. In the wake of her father’s collapse, he takes charge and directs them to his father’s hospital, smoothing the way for the worried family while assuming the gentle caretaker role.

Of course, he’s primarily motivated by selfish reasons — he has to look good to Ae-ryung to convince her to marry him — but he’s a good guy at heart, too, and his attentions are more or less sincere. It’s a case of doing something for an ulterior motive, but then enjoying the goodwill that results from that and realizing that maybe it’s just as fulfilling to do good as it is to play the hedonist.

Chae-ryung (Moon Chae-won), still rather selfish and thoughtless, suggests that her sister marry Jin-gu, since he’s a nice enough sort and his family ties would take care of their hospital bill. Ae-ryung feels torn for a brief moment, thinking that perhaps she might have a chance with her father’s kindly doctor instead — only to find out that he’s taken. So with her family facing a future of genteel poverty and no better prospects around, she accepts Jin-gu’s offer.

Both Chae-ryung’s family and the Choi brothers (Hyuk-ki, Wook-ki) are displaced from their homes due to money troubles. In the immediate aftermath of Deok-ki’s death, Chae-ryung’s family had sought the legal advice of Jong-seok’s parents, not realizing that their legal counsel was tainted by their desire to cover up for their son. They’d advised the Eun family to rustle up a settlement fee, and the family had handed over 500 million won (about $400,000) to Deok-ki’s parents, who had grabbed the cash and split. They’d left their two sons with no more than a note that if it turns out that Daddy Eun isn’t guilty of killing Deok-ki, they ought to repay the settlement fee. Such thoughtful parents.

This also leaves Chae-ryung’s family nearly broke, although their situation is exacerbated by Mom and Uncle Man-soo’s foolish attempt to make cash quick on a business scheme. They’d been hoping to cover all their recent bills with the windfall… only, there’s no such thing as get-rich-quick. Now Mom is juggling loan shark fees, though she allows the family to believe that their strain is solely from the settlement, and that forces them out of their comfortably bourgeois home and into a roach-infested apartment.

Ae-ryung and Jin-gu marry, although the ceremony is a muted affair with the absence of Dad. Ae-ryung, thankfully, is well-liked by her father-in-law, Dr. Jung, and he understands that she married into the family for her father’s sake. She promises to make this up to him, and plays the part of the dutiful daughter-in-law.

Jin-gu is tempted to resume his frivolous ways immediately upon marriage, but he fends off his friends because he’s enjoying having his father’s approval, for once. Now that he’s made a good move in marrying a woman his father deems worthy, he’s not about to lose that credit and plays the part of the faithful husband — and again, because he’s got a good nature to begin with, he finds himself slipping into the role with relative ease.

The Choi brothers have been harboring suspicions that there’s another culprit responsible for Deok-ki’s death, particularly after receiving the mysterious text message that there’s more to the story. However, they keep this to their circle of friends, not wanting to share this with the Eun family until they have proof.

In the meantime, Hyuk-ki and Wook-ki continue to work hard and visit Daddy Eun, treating him with as much care as real sons might. There’s a nice conflict in here in that the Eun family feels indebted to the brothers because of Deok-ki’s death, while the brothers feel indebted to the Euns because if they’re right, then the family has suffered for nothing.

Chae-ryung experiences a bout of self-pity that frankly goes on too long, because she’s been used to a pampered lifestyle and can’t come to grips with her new home or situation. Mind you, she’s not actually starving or homeless, so my sympathy for her whininess only extends this far: Boo freakin’ hoo.

The one thing she does in her bout of righteous indignation that I’m okay with is yelling at her mom, once she discovers that it’s actually Mom’s foolish investment that forced them out of their home, not Dad or the settlement. Mom and Uncle pack up to find the guy who ripped them off, promising not to return until they’ve solved the matter.

Thankfully, it’s Hyuk-ki — with whom she’s been growing closer as he continues to help with her father — who kicks her out of her funk by pointing out that she could, you know, actually work. It’s a strange concept for her, since her education has been middling at best and she has no experience or skills, but the point is taken.

In her typical Chae-ryung way, she initially turns her nose down at menial jobs that would pay too little to support her family, and reluctantly turns to that last resort of so many desperate k-drama heroines: the bar hostess. That’s a short-lived first day on the job, because her sugar daddy karaokes to the song her own father always sang, and if that’s not enough to skeeve out a body, I don’t know what is. She runs out of the bar, just as Hyuk-ki gets there, intent on stopping her. Aw. He’s too late for that, but just in time to offer her a platonic-but-not-really piggyback ride home.

After that, Chae-ryung finally gets around to pulling up some bootstraps and goes on a job-seeking bender, landing herself not one but three part-time gigs. Welcome to the Choi Boy lifestyle, honey. This means one job making coffee at the crack of dawn, followed by a restaurant gig in the afternoon, topped off with a night of washing dishes at a bar/club, where both Hyuk-ki and Wook-ki (conveniently!) also have part-time jobs. Oh, and also their roommate friends. And also Chae-ryung’s old middle-school buddy. It’s a small world after all.

It’s this group of friends who, through no reason other than sheer decency of character, often step up and help out with Chae-ryung’s family, particularly in looking after her father and in trying to crack the case of who the real killer is. Due to complications from his aneurysm, Dad is moved into a nursing home, allowing for Chae-ryung and her brother to work full-time.

In fact, it’s the friends who first cotton on to Jong-seok’s constant hovering, which has gone unnoticed by Chae-ryung. He has been following her around, growing angrier to see her buddying up to Hyuk-ki, and has been seen by co-workers who find his presence ominous. They alert Chae-ryung to her stalker, and she finally confronts Jong-seok and tells him in no uncertain terms that she isn’t interested, and that he’d better buzz off. He… does not take this well.

Meanwhile, Ae-ryung has been going through her own issues with her in-laws, since Jin-gu’s mother and sister have decided to make her life hellish. Ae-ryung bears their shrewishness without complaints, but her attempts to bridge the gap go ignored, particularly by sis-in-law Sae-yeon.

This drama has way too many characters and plotlines, because yet another troublemaker steps up in the form of a bar hostess, Hee-jae, who has revenge on her mind. Turns out she’s Jin-gu’s half-sister — a product of a first marriage — but since Mom hates her, she’d conspired with their lawyer to strip Hee-jae of her medical license. So now Hee-jae harbors a grudge and conspires to tell Ae-ryung one of the big family secrets (well, other than herself) — that Jin-gu had himself a little “accident” twenty years ago, and his sister Sae-yeon is actually his daughter.

Omo! In a properly plotted drama where big dramatic reveals are given the room to play out, this would be a shocker. But no, Sae-yeon finds out the truth, runs away from home, and seeks solace with the Choi brothers (she’s got a crush on the younger Wook-ki). In the span of an episode or two, Wook-ki puts her pouting princess attitude to rest by making her work for her keep, and like magic, she comes around to her family.

Jin-gu’s got some ‘splainin’ to do, however, and faces his wife with remorse. He fesses up to the other big shocker she has discovered: that she’s not wife no 1. (Or 2.) Ae-ryung battles her impulse to run, but because their relationship has grown into one of mutual caring, she decides to go back with him, surprising his family with her loyalty. Jin-gu feels bolstered by the way Ae-ryung expects more of him than his parents did, and vows to do better, even maybe start working. (I know!)

And then, a break in the case. Or should I say, several breaks in the case, completely unrelated to each other, all conveniently cropping up simultaneously. Just in time for finale week!

Jong-seok gets into a fender-bender with a couple of the Choi brothers’ friends, but due to his sneering ‘tude, what should have been a minor matter for an insurance claim turns into an argument, which leads to a hit and run. He then does the supremely stupid thing of seeing Hyuk-ki in the street and trying to run him over — in broad daylight no less — and boasts to both parties about having connections that’ll keep him out of trouble. Of course, this attempted car-assault reminds Hyuk-ki of his poor brother’s demise, and another piece of the puzzle falls into place.

Plus, the Hit-N-Run victim is so insulted by Jong-seok’s attitude that she declares her intent to pursue this to the full extent of the law. Oh yeah, her brother’s a law student (and Hyuk-ki’s friend). And did she mention her dad’s on the Supreme Court? (For reals.)

Jong-seok goes crying to Lawyer Daddy, who rustles up paperwork to cover his son’s ass. But the strength of Daddy’s influence is on the wane, and Jong-seok gets carted away for his hit and run as well as manslaughter.

Meanwhile, Daddy Eun is finally up for his own court date on the manslaughter charge. Team Choi Brothers has been hard at work building up his defense, and on trial day, they bring in anybody and everybody to testify. It’s all very damning for Jong-seok, as well as his father, whose professional misdeeds are laid bare.

They even have a hidden trump card: Deok-ki’s friend, who’d been bought off by Lawyer Daddy, who had seen the entire attack with his own eyes and even recorded it on cell phone. Alas, the cell phone has been damaged beyond all repair, and they have no other concrete evidence tying Jong-seok to Deok-ki’s death.

The outcome: Daddy Eun is absolved of any guilt. There is not enough evidence to convict Jong-seok of the manslaughter, but he does get a year in the clink for his hit and run, and not even Daddy can save him from that.

It’s a bittersweet victory, because as much as everyone is thrilled for Daddy Eun, it also means that Deok-ki’s killer has gone unpunished. With that wrongful death hanging between them, the lovers — Chae-ryung and Hyuk-ki — don’t feel free to pursue their attraction, and leave things on a wistful note. Chae-ryung gets the opportunity to pursue her career abroad, because (1) being a barista is that important, and (2) this drama is on a scavenger hunt for cliches.

And then… FOUR YEARS PASS.

Pretty much everyone gets a nice, neat ending, like the Eun family, which has rebounded from their lows to run a successful family restaurant. In fact, today’s the day that they have finally paid off the last of their loans, which signals the beginning of a new era for them. Ae-ryung’s marriage is happy, and so is her in-law family.

Hyuk-ki is now a prosecutor, while his law-school friend is a judge. Today he has received a key piece of evidence in the mail — the purse that got run over by Jong-seok’s car, sent from his now-deceased mother.

The other key piece of evidence has also lain dormant for years — Deok-ki’s broken phone. But wouldn’t you know it, younger brother Wook-ki has become a tech researcher and has developed a newfangled way to restore lost videos. You know what this means!

And yup, it’s finally time to go after Jong-seok again, who has sunken further into his dissipated ways by drinking and gambling at illegal casinos, expecting his father to bail him out. And the ultimate sign that he is despicable? He wants father dearest to get him out of army duty! No single act could signal more clearly his utter villainy.

Dad is left begging for mercy, and with that unfinished business well on its way to finally being wrapped up, Hyuk-ki is finally free to run into Chae-ryung again. Well, she WAS in China for four years, but she is conveniently back.

Their happenstance reunion isn’t very wordy, but the feelings are still there as he tells her, “I missed you like crazy,” and she returns the sentiment.

And then, the entire gang assembles at the Eun’s modest home to celebrate Dad’s 60th birthday. The end.

 
COMMENTS

Oh man, there’s no reason this drama should have been as watchable as it was for me, with its clunky storytelling and often mediocre-to-bad acting by the very green cast. In fact, I’d venture to say that Choi Jin-hyuk was the only one who was doing any decent acting to speak of, particularly as the drama headed toward its close. Everyone else was kind of putzing around, saying their lines and trying to remain in character, while he was the only one really getting into the skin of his Hyuk-ki character. Thank goodness for that, because if we had not even that scrap, who knows how much less watchable this drama would’ve been. And I say that as someone who really enjoys Moon Chae-won, normally. She had a character who wasn’t terribly interesting — I didn’t hate her, although I wouldn’t be surprised if her spoiled princess routine wore thin for some — but neither did she add to the role with any added oomph of her own. You could argue that Hyuk-ki was just as flat a character on the page, but at least Choi Jin-hyuk gave him heart and emotion.

The rest of the cast… meh. Some were bad but entertainingly so, like Jeon Tae-soo going for another straight-up psycho villain. He was not well-acted, but the character was pretty ridiculous with his ability to stir up trouble and not care about it. Donghae may have lucked out by scoring a character who is so good-hearted and likable to earn him goodwill with viewers — but let’s be honest, boy wasn’t really acting much. But when you hold him up against the rest of the posse, he was pretty much par for the course, which means he didn’t stick out (…’cause they all sucked. Faint praise indeed). They’re redeemed (if you could call it that) by the fact that the posse was an overwhelmingly benevolent, kind, thoughtful presence in the drama that you were meant to like them regardless of how well they carried out the technicality of acting the roles.

The romance was pretty tame and, sadly for me, fairly understated the whole way through. There’s a reason the drama ends on Daddy Eun with his daughters, though, and not the romantic resolution, because as we know, the title of this is It’s Okay, Daddy’s Girl — as if they’d ever let us forget! It also took way too long to get started — about eight or nine episodes, if I recall correctly. I think I may have been watching more for the promise of what might happen – what I hoped would happen — than was actually happening onscreen. Because these two are cute together, had some chemistry, and could have been so much more.

Take their parting, which was a nice narrative turn that I liked, and wished could have had more impact if only the rest of the drama were stronger. After the case is closed, Chae-ryung is about to embark on her job opportunity, and Hyuk-ki is genuinely happy for her advancement, because he’s always believed she had it in her — it’s why he was the one to alays push her rather than coddle her. Then he hears that her job will take her abroad, and that puts a damper on the mood… but with the disappointment of the unresolved case still hanging between them, he can’t hold on to her, either. Not for a moral or ethical reason, just that it’s too soon… they’re both feeling conflicted and hurt, and Deok-ki’s memory is too strong a presence right now.

So Chae-ryung bids him goodbye, and offers him the chance to say some last words before she goes. He can’t find the words, and she turns to go — so he grabs the mic and sings a song:

It’s Okay, Daddy’s Girl OST – “죽을만큼” sung by Choi Jin-hyuk [ Download ]

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

On a symbolic level, it’s also why they don’t meet again until after he’s resolved the case. And to do that, he had to become the prosecutor, and his brother had to (snerk) invent a technology to recover the lost data. I mean, that’s kind of lame from a story point of view. No, it’s really lame. The drama could have just found Jong-seok guilty in the first place, but it wanted to give us the too-perfect ending of both brothers doing their part to bring their brother’s murderer to justice, in a very literal way. So we get the overly neat, rather implausible ending instead.

That speaks to the drama as a whole, really, because it’s actually full of interesting plots and conflicts. It just couldn’t pull them off with much competence. I said early on that Daddy’s Girl felt like a family drama, and that it does, all the way through. One problem that brings is that it means the pacing is all wrong for a miniseries — too slow, plodding, obvious. It takes five episodes to do what it could (should) do in one, as though it figures it has the luxury of fifty episodes to tell its story at a leisurely pace. Only it doesn’t — it only has 17. So stories take a while to unfold, and then are hastily wrapped up without giving ample time for the emotional fallout to have any effect. In fact, at some points I felt like Daddy’s Girl was actually just the highlight reel of a much longer family series — all the best parts squished into a shorter format, which gave us the plot but left out the room for the story to resonate with us.

So ultimately what I have to say about this drama is this: It could have been so much better, and I kind of wish that it was. But watched without the burden of those expectations, it somehow retained enough of its appeal — however raw and unfinished — to keep viewers tuned in.

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76 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. indah

    i love this drama..

  2. tegami

    I totally agree with you, Javabeans. It’s Okay Daddy’s Girl was a drama that, despite it’s many flaws, had me hooked. I loved the honest to goodness goodwill that existed between the characters. Also, not to mention that fact that this drama was overpopulated with an exponentially high number of good looking actors – Choi Jin-hyuk T_T

  3. weewand

    hmm…..haven’t watched this one. too many male cast (last pic) :D

    • 3.1 Informantxgirl

      Actually, too many cast members period. It was like some kind of flash mob half the time, lol.

      I marathoned the whole series in 3 days and found it middling at best, but as stated, perfectly watchable. The most pleasant surprise for me was the Jin Gu/Ae Ryung pairing. I felt it would play out differently (more of a jealousy-fueled love triangle with the doctor), but the way it did work out really struck a chord with me and I have absolutely no idea why. Just the thought that this irascible man-child turned into the world’s best husband, son-in-law, and brother-in-law simply due to love…well, I’m a sucker for that kind of thing.

      In that one scene where they kinda/almost confess their love for each other (side note: why so little kissing in this drama?), I loved the subtlety of their actions – he doesn’t say he loves her, but he takes off his scarf and winds it around her neck after putting her coat on her shoulders and telling her to go in because it’s cold. Makes me feel like theirs is a love that would last.

  4. Sara A

    I totally agree with your post. I have finished it, and I liked the drama… but kept thinking that it could have been better.

    • 4.1 hookedonmonix

      I liked it all the way through, until I caught the gist of the last episode and I couldn’t bring myself to watch it. I think, though, I liked waiting for the next episode better. Because, sadly, the romance is what I’m all about and I kept thinking “ooh, HK and CR were so cute together in this ep. I bet there’ll be some progress in the next episode” and “ooh, AR is finally liking her hubby. Maybe she’ll show him some affection in the next episode…” alas, alas, alas. I think I’m going to have to watch some kissing montages to make up for the dearth of skinship.

  5. Lacey

    at least theres a lot of eye candies in the drama?

  6. dom

    [OOT] Jun Tae Soo has got himself in trouble. I hope that he can resolve the matter soon.

    source : http://www.allkpop.com/2011/01/actor-jun-tae-soo-booked-for-assaulting-a-taxi-driver-and-two-policemen

    I’m sorry i couldn’t give a more reliable source…

    • 6.1 queencircles

      lol yea I just read about this. I was looking on db to see if javabeans said anything about it.

    • 6.2 kay

      wow. i’m surprise he wasn’t better at acting out the part if this is actually what he does in his real life.

      • 6.2.1 queencircles

        lol

      • 6.2.2 lambayyx

        LOL

  7. Kender

    Ugh, you took the words right out of my mouth JB. I spent the entire last episode yelling and flailing around because it was SO RIDICULOUS (super-tidy endings make me rage-y), and yet I still get all kinds of warm fuzzies when I think back on this drama.

    I’m not sad I watched it, but I agree that it could’ve been so much more with a better writer/director/cast.

    Thanks for the overview! It’s amazing, you left out almost nothing, but it could still be this short.. Maybe this drama would’ve done better as a movie or a drama special. :)

  8. Janna

    Ugh, wrap up montage. They knew they were fighting against the clock and just slapped OST over some nodding and hand gestures to smooth things along. It’s gonna be allllll riiiiigghhhttt! Yeah! Group Hug!

    I like your cap of the boys giving stern looks at the ice skating rink, but this… this is the best scene of the entire show:
    http://i264.photobucket.com/albums/ii184/mintrainphotobucket/dg1.jpg

    They’re all judging you with their eyes, Jong-seok! Oh no!

    • 8.1 Janna

      I’m gonna fix this.. maybe. maybe. I seriously closed that italics tag, but since it was at the end of a comment it must be a glitch or something.

      Another note, I found Lee Hee Jin to be pretty good for her first time (apparently) acting. (She could also use a burger..soooo thin.)

      • 8.1.1 Mallory

        I totally agreed with you on Lee Hee Jin! Her legs looked like the size of my 10 years old sister’s arms!

    • 8.2 Jean C Bloom

      Perhaps, he was just staying “in character.” Well, that could be his defense.

    • 8.3 missDVM

      your pictures was AWESOME. hahaha! I think I have to watch the show just to see this scene. Thanks for posting it! lol

  9. yui

    i stopped watching this after 2 episodes…i was so bored and have no interest on this drama even i love donghae..XD
    i dunno..i said i love yunho and donghae,but i haven’t finished watching their dramas..no biased! XD

  10. 10 kdfan

    I am really glad you wrote this overview despite the drama being so lame. Thanks! I agree the whole package was flawed but there must be something about the cast that made me watched without missing an episode. The bunch of young, green yet attractive newbies were quite delightful to watch.

  11. 11 jojo

    Thanks JB for Daddy’s Girl in a nutshell… since I know what to expect, I may watch if I get snowed in again here in NYC.

  12. 12 BellaMafia

    I’m on episode 9, so I skipped the whole posting to avoid spoilers :-)
    Just wanna say.. I couldn’t believe Kang Sung (Jin Gu) was born in 1981. I thought he was like 20 years old. His wife looks so much older than him (sorry.. no offense to the actress though). She’s just a year older than him. Omg.. what a baby face he has!

  13. 13 laura

    i liked this drama!!!
    better than dream high

  14. 14 Eunsoo

    this is the best drama this year. I totally agree that it tell the story of a long 50ep drama in only 17, despite some things missing it was with Kim Tak Go the best drama.

  15. 15 grateful1

    Yep, IODG had way too many flaws to be considered “good” technically, but it was so imbued with the spirit of goodness that I found myself really looking forward to it each week.

    I think in a way, it served as a balm for our collective psyche– with so much strife and hardship in our world today, in a sense, we’re all “Daddy’s girl” who need to be reassured that “it’s okay”. This is a narrative that was full of people being victimized in one way or another, yet rather than allowing themselves to become victims, they pulled together and confronted their challenges with tremendous heart and grace. Frankly, my heart needs that kind of inspiration right now, which made it a lot easier for me to overlook the show’s flaws.

    On a more superficial note, I’m addicted to male eye-candy, but for this drama, it was Moon Chae Won whom I looked forward to seeing the most each week– somehow, despite her less-than-stellar acting, her lovely face was part of the medicine for me.

  16. 16 danna

    i’ve been debating about watching this for a while..i guess i’ll save this for marathoning in a rainy day now…..totally sux about JTS’s incident…i do hope he doesn’t get outed from AML since i totally enjoy his loveline with Yoon Sang Ah there…he really hasnt improved much since SKKS but i guess it doesnt help that he has been getting the same kind of roles either

  17. 17 mel

    JB-I’m so glad that you recapped this in a nutshell, it had a hold on me too that I watched it quickly in one day. I really enjoyed this, ‘watched it and really enjoyed it…’ and it did have plenty of cliches and of course the ultimate essence of Korean Drama is redemption, there were lots character redemptions, I’m waiting for subs for ep 17…

    This is one that’s worth the time. I agree about Kang Sung with the baby face in that his wife looked much older than him–agree with BellaMafia. His wife’s role though was pivotal in the changes in his family and in him as well as her own family…. And the treat with Kang Sung singing tract #1, thanks.

    JB–I hope you do a lot of recaps in a nutshell in the future, ‘great to see that you do watch other dramas that are not fully recapped. You already know my one great wish is for recaps of classics–older kdramas. But yes, I know, I know you’ve got so much on your hands. Thanks so much and always I will look forward to your future recaps with GF and your whole gang..

  18. 18 OxyR

    I’m curious about something..

    For those who have seen this drama, does anyone of you shed tears at all?

    I’m started to think I lost my sensitivity. The characters cried all the time… like you know.. every 5 minutes they cry. Meanwhile, I don’t feel like the sadness of the story worth to shed my tears. I just don’t feel it. This drama reminded me of Cinderella’s sister (in term of tears), I didn’t cry at all.. So much tears per episode, is it really sad?

    So.. am I being insensitive? or something wrong with the storyline?

    • 18.1 Sara A

      I didn’t cry at all… well actually I usually don’t cry a lot… so don’t worry. There were some sad moments but not very strong enough to let you cry.

    • 18.2 Janna

      When Duk-ki has the blow out with his brothers about their life I cried. Considering the flow of scenes it was probably the last time his brothers had a conversation with him, before he collapsed and died.

      It wasn’t played like a joke with the parent(s) constantly on the run after stealing money from the sons. Just a raw deal. In the end, the parents were not redeemed, they just died. Not everyone gets the picture perfect family. As Duk-ki gloomily looked on the neighborhood that might forever be their future it was pretty sad.

    • 18.3 van

      i’m sorry, but if that’s insensitive, i’m a horrible person.

      i skipped those scenes. they took too long…

  19. 19 mjdora

    this drama is so flawed yet so heartwarming. it made me cry a few times. the choi brothers and their posse are so unbelievably nice and good-hearted that you can’t help but root for them. i kind of wished we had more of the romance though. we didn’t even had a kiss from the couple haha.

    • 19.1 mjdora

      wait, why is there a choikang changmin tag? lol

  20. 20 asianromance

    Thanks for the overview! I didn’t watch the drama but was intrigued by your last post about it and people’s comments on how much they enjoy this drama despite the mediocrity. I can’t believe they managed to fit the drama into 17 episodes with the first half of the drama being so drawn out! Maybe 10 years from now, some scriptwriter will adapt this drama into a longer family-drama format.

  21. 21 mimi

    this drama was NOT mediocre! it’s not 2010′s best drama ok, but still i had a good time watching the 17 episodes because it stayed interesting the whole time.
    the cast did a good job, even DongHae who did not get to act a lot, but did well for his parts^^
    i’d recommend this drama if you want a not too dramatic story with a good ending

  22. 22 Moneekah

    I started watching this drama solely for the Chae-ryung/ Hyuk-ki relationship and was really disappointed that they didn’t exploit the romance a little more in the finale.

    I totally get the conflict between thm but geez…there have been better romances over bigger issues.: like being siblings for example. All in the drama i guess.

  23. 23 kdlover

    I like the drama. I thought the main girl did a great job. She’s so cute!

  24. 24 Nalala

    Me too I don’t think I’ll watch it again or remmember watching it in a far future, but I really like the family theme and I thought it was a light drama despite all the tears they’ve shown us, I would have liked it if the love story was a little bit more developed but I’m satisfied with what they’ve given us since I wasn’t expecting too much from this drama.

  25. 25 bee

    Chae-ryung gets the opportunity to pursue her career abroad…

    Wait, she’s a barista and she goes abroad for several years to pursue her career… as a barista? Didn’t that remind anyone else of Coffee Prince?

    • 25.1 Ani

      I think everybody who saw Coffee Prince noticed the similarities. I wish they would’ve picked a different career route so that people wouldn’t make this connection and cause comparisons between the popularity of CP and IODG.

  26. 26 Ani

    Oh man, I hope someone would make a cut video of all of Aeryung’s – older sis – parts because it looks pretty interesting. I’m going to have to go in now and fast forward through it to find her parts. I hope Choi Jin-hyuk shows up in another drama soon because, I’ve go to admit, from all the pictures of him, son is fiiiiiine! I tried watching this drama originally, but psycho boy was so not the business for me. And the fact that Chaeryung never noticed his stalking and creeper ways for waaaaaay too long kindof got on my nerves. The whole time I was yelling at her “Do you not seeeeee that this guy is eeeeeeeevil?” or more like “Dudes a creeper, tell him off already.” Sometimes I wanted to hit psycho boy and just tell him to grow a pair and move the F*** on. At least, in the end, justice was served and the good guys won and the baddies lost. AAAAAAAAASSSAAAAAAAAAA!

  27. 27 flowerpower

    There was one character that I found anoying , and that was Jin-gu’s party friend Marcos. When I saw him in “We Got Married”. Although he was very friendly and likeable, he gave me the impression of being very inmature and kind of an airhead. The way he behaved in the show is exactly the same way he is perceive in the drama so I am guessing this is how he really is in real life. I just hope people don’t think all Argentinean’s or from any other Spanish speaking Country act so disrespectfull like he does.

  28. 28 Peacestar

    Thanks for the review javabeans! was hoping you would. I enjoyed the show too despite the flaws, it was heart warming and I loved the goodness of the characters and how they all helped each other, good reminder what ever life throws at you, you can get through it. Choi Hyuk-ki is one of my fave kdrama heroes, he was so sweet and sensible.

  29. 29 e

    when the main couple didnt meet up until past the midpoint of the drama i assumed they would rush through the courtship somehow but that never happened. even in the last couple of episodes their interaction was very very minimal. its not what hooked me into the drama in the first place (i got suckered in by all the daddy/daughter and sisterly love) so i dont know why i was so disappointed that i didnt get more from that couple. i think this was balanced out by the way that ae ryung and jin gu’s relationship blossomed. although i was always half hoping dr. hong may still enter the picture at some point :) in the end, it was all the mushy goodwill of the ensemble, the way that chae ryung (and the whole eun family) was able to come out of the disaster with a new expanded family that kept me tuning in.

    yes this drama could’ve been so much more but i find myself saying that about most dramas anyway, especially after watching the ending (ahem Cinderella’s Sister! ahem).

    oh well, it was good while it lasted!

  30. 30 Setsu

    Moon Chae Won is awesome but I could get over my initial dislike of the character and this really didn’t do anything for her career that being said I wish she would take on a villainous role or something similar to her Brilliant Legacy role.

  31. 31 churasan

    Thanks for the summary. I watched this one to the end too, even though I didn’t get super excited about it. I think for me, there were just too many characters and storylines for a 17-episode drama. I hoped they would have focused more attention on the romance story between Hyuk-ki and Chae-ryung, but I guess it was more of a family drama.

  32. 32 @.@

    dear javabeans, i respectfully disagree with you.
    last year, my top dramas (meaning they were great from beginning to end) were fugitive:plan b, baker king kim tak goo, and my girlfriend is a gumiho.
    this year, i’m guessing it’s okay daddy’s girl is going to be on that list. i loved the show, the characters, the acting, and the plot throughout!

  33. 33 Nars

    Cool story, bro.

    • 33.1 lambayyx

      rood

  34. 34 yo

    i actually awaited this drama every mon/tues. the acting wasn’t very good, but it wasn’t bad either. i loved the cast ensemble though. a bunch of young men/women working hard and helping each other out.

    the drama’s plot was a mess, but there were many poignant moments weaved into the mess and each one really stands out (like the main couple’s farewell as jb mentioned and many others between different characters). aeryung and jingu’s storyline got me hooked in the beginning and later on chaeryung and hyukki’s storyline was interesting.

    but seriously, this drama would have been so much better w/ LESS jeongsuk / jeon taesoo.

    i loved the cast so much. i wish they would move them to “new tale of gisaeng” b/c the latter’s current cast is annoying.

  35. 35 dramaboy1

    Jeon Tae-soo i guess hasn’t been able to get out of his character for this drama…he hit a tax driver while he was drunk yesterday…i wonder if that will hold up in court

  36. 36 william william william!

    hey guys
    thanks for the recaps
    i have watched up to 11 eps but stopped watching because the same themes were present in the first half of the series, one of the daughters marrying a rich fella to look after dad, a spoiled rich girl, a spoiled evil brat who uses his parents profession to commit crimes and it got a bit repetitive, you made the recap easier and condense whereas the drama wasn’t

    At first i was expecting this and that but the first 8 eps was only developing the story and this took ages, no new developments, no new plots just the same themes just being reused for each episode

    this drama should have been a daily miniseries or even a 50 ep drama

    most of the leads were okay, though some of them were hyped more than others,
    some did better than others id have to admit, especially the girl from baby vox, her emotions and tears really brought out the actress in her
    im not a big fan of having too many idol stars acting cos we get to lose out on potential real actors who can act than those who cant

    taecyeon in cinderella’s sister, god i want to shoot myself, i dont care what people say, he is stiff and can’t act, oh and something about jaypark leaving 2pm made me hate him more
    ji-yeon, has potential in what she acts but has very limited range
    min ho in pianist, blah, sm entertainment and their power in kpop music world
    si-won in athena, hot hot hot and can act, like in his last drama with chae rim
    suzy, has potential but limited to what the script has
    and finally kim hyung joon, i just want to get him off the airways once and for all, he couldn’t act in BOF and his last project was boring, he only suits characters that don’t need a lot of expression, im sure everyone should agree about that atleast, even his cameo in dream high was blah
    just wish the show was more pacier and brisk instead of this slow and slow turn of events, the whole story was based on a wooki’s brother’s death and that dragged out 17 eps,

    by the 8th ep, i was bored to tears with no new developments, i tried and tried watching it and nothing really worked, why cos nothing new presented itself

    again thanks for the recaps and have a nice new start to feb to all readers of dramabeans.com

  37. 37 jen

    lol at the suju pose XD

  38. 38 weissman

    Ultimately it was something watch between MGIG and Paradise Ranch/Dream High

  39. 39 LotusW

    LOL! great recaps. The sarcasm is hilarious. If I knew studying barista is SO important, should’ve done it way back when. who knows I might even end up studying it in korea. oh but wait, cos in kdramaland those studying barista would do it in other foreign countries!

  40. 40 heh...

    that last photo makes it look like the girl has an harem of guys.

  41. 41 ninsarama

    jingu and aeryung couple was by far my favorite part of the drama to watch

  42. 42 cheekbones

    I couldn’t agree more with you, jb, on all aspects. Thanks for the overview.

  43. 43 girlatsea

    So, my question is… Should I bother watching it? Because initially I was pretty interested but then they took it off Viki before I even had a chance to watch the first episode.

  44. 44 Taber

    Almost everyday I replay Jin Gu stand off with Sae-yeon ex boyfriend in front of the house. I don’t know if it was the dialog or his punctuation of the words that gave off such a manly vibe that captivate me. There was this one part where he seem to have a accent that made my inter ear drum ring. It was a sweet sexy vibation along with toxic words I was hook on the drama after episode 7 or should I say I was hook on Jin Gu. I was never drawn to the Man/Child type but I might have to open my heart for a character like Jin Gu who was manly in all the right places and childish in all the right area. The thing with Jin Gu character that his flaws was weak but his positive point was incredible Strong, sweet, hopeless, pathetic “Jin Gu”. I can give a lifetime to such a person.

  45. 45 faridah2201

    Thanks for the recap in a nutshell. I really enjoyed the drama even if it was a ball of cliched mess. I didn’t marathon, I simply waited every week for it, not fervently, but still. I started to watch it for Moon Chae Won because I like her as an actress and I was excited by the idea of her finally getting the guy (most of the shows I have seen her with she is a second lead) but in the end found myself annoyed with her character but not enough to dislike her, I just am not a fan of immature characters who take too long to grow.
    My favorite part of the drama though was the pairing of Ae-Ryung and Jin-Gu. They were just so sweet. Watching Jin-Gu slowly change because of her was adorable. I’m a sucker for watching a character grow, hence the reason why I liked Oh My Lady, another drama that did not really deliver on the romance level.
    There was one that did irk me while i was watching it though, Duk-ki’s character, or rather the fact his character was the most interesting of the 3 brothers and he was dead. I found myself upset every time they did a flashback of him, not because I did not like his character (I really liked his character) but rather because I was upset the only character that was slightly layered wasn’t actually a character.

  46. 46 Barbara

    I’m absolutely addicted to Donghae’s track for the OST.

  47. 47 chibity

    Thanks for the overview. As some others mentioned the drama wasn’t that great, but somehow you got hooked.
    Even my brother who barely watches kdrama got so interested that he watched every new episode even without subs.
    We started watching the first 3 episodes and were kind of overwhelmed by all the storylines. But you already wanted to know which way it would develop.

    I liked the ae-ryung jin-gu pairing the best. All the secrets and her hardship and the happy end for them was just nice. Kang Sung portrayed the man-child perfectly. I can’t imagine him in a more mature role just yet though.

    The supposed main couple wasn’t interesting at all for me. Also, they started that storyline rather late. By then I was more interested in the other pairing.

    All in all, the drama should have had 40+ episodes like for example Smile You to have the characters and storylines develop more plausible. That would have been nice.

  48. 48 Kerstin

    I’ve only seen the last 4 Episodes or so..but I’ve got a question…maybe it’ll be explained in the first episodes but I’m not so sure if I want to watch them…so how old is that man-child and his sister aka child? Because he really does look like he’s in his twenties…

  49. 49 goldeng

    thanks 4 the recap but i cant agree with you it wasnt that crappy… it wasnt the best drama ever but i loved it! maybe it was because im a law student but i found all the case amazing i even found myself thinking how to solve the mess at least once xD OHH i started to watch it because fo Donghae and fell in love with Wook Ki Cho Long… but i loved it because the drama was realistic and made it clear that theres bad people out there yeah but there are also good people… that will help you no matter what… how they helped each other… that was the main reason I stuck with the drama… i like romance and stuff but i knew from the 1st ep that i would not find it in this romance… and i was cool with that cuz the drama was about family, friendship, brotherhood, Daddy and Duk Ki… i think the end was kinda made ina rush… cuz they wanted to explain ALL and didnt developed that much their characters… the character i wanted to grab and kidnap was Jin Gu he was extremely funny, a player and a mama’s boy and then he became a gentlemen for Ae Ryung (i actually cried a lot because she married with someone she didnt love… “arranged marriages”… that issue really bugs me but at the end everything turned out great :D)… i loved all the male characters and wanted to make them part of my harem cuz they were so hot LOL but I specially loved him :)

  50. 50 red

    Choi jin hyuk’s acting was pretty good…i thought he had several projects under his belt but this was like his first leading role???

    it was badly made but it was heartwarming and it had me crying and smiling ….it was kind of good to watch something without such heavy expectations and then eventually getting disappointed

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