Drama Recaps
Can’t Lose: Episode 6
by | September 8, 2011 | 69 Comments

This drama gives me the warm fuzzies. I love all the characters because they’re so genuinely flawed – hilariously stubborn, fiercely prideful, stupid when it comes to love. Basically, they remind me of real people. For a drama about breaking up, there sure is a lot of love, so much so that I alternately want to slap them upside the head and give them bear hugs, every five minutes. Also, can we have Hubby face off with HotBar in every episode? So. Awesome.


So the in-laws finally meet, each brandishing the other’s child as legal counsel in their land wars… which turns out to be as awkward as you’d expect. Suddenly the moms go from shouting at each other in banmal to tacking on awkward formalities in jondae because now they’re in-laws and forced to be polite. (Funny, another instance of the banmal-jondae reverse in this drama.)

Eun-jae storms out of course, and Hyung-woo chases her down to explain. She screams at him for meeting her mother behind her back, and he argues semantics with her, that he wanted to tell her but was unable to, and was about to get permission. While I get hubby’s train of thought, that would never fly with me either.

He tells her that consulting on the land deal was the whole reason for canceling their Japan trip, and suggests they go back inside to work things out. She scoffs at his inability to read the situation – he clearly doesn’t seem to understand just how bad things are between mom and daughter. She storms off.

He returns to the restaurant to try and smooth things over between the moms, but it’s a rough road ahead. Eun-jae’s mom puts on a cheery face, but once everyone leaves, she sighs as she looks down at her pictures of Eun-jae’s wedding, which she wasn’t invited to, and had to watch from a distance. Sad.

She calls Eun-jae who answers coolly, and when Mom asks if it isn’t tiring to be so cold and cut her off completely, Eun-jae reminds her that she’s the one who abandoned her daughter. Mom has nothing to say in her defense, and Eun-jae tells her not to call anymore.

Flashback to the Mom-daughter breakup conversation: Mom had decided to go back to “that man,” when he fell ill and had no one to take care of him after his children abandoned him. Eun-jae refused to let her mom go through pain or heartache again, thinking of the pain he’d caused their family, but Mom had insisted on going.

Eun-jae laid down the ultimatum: choose him and never see her daughter again. And in a fit of anger, Mom had chosen against her, shouting that she doesn’t need her mother anyway. Eun-jae took that to heart, and vowed never to see her again.

It’s not specified whether this man is her biological father, (perhaps a stepfather or just long-term ex-boyfriend) but either way he’s got a “legitimate” family elsewhere. From Eun-jae’s point of view Mom’s being stupid to take him back, especially since he never asked for her when he was healthy, but now needs her when he’s ill and his real family abandoned him.

Well it promised to be a doozy and it is. I can also see how Mom may have said all that in a burst of anger, not really meaning it, but Eun-jae’s cutthroat personality is much more exacting than Mom’s, and she meant it. She drew a line and never turned back.

Hyung-woo smoothes things over with his mom, who is displeased at both his secret-keeping and the in-law relationship she can’t undo (or maybe you can, yet). He sweetly tells her to try and get along with Eun-jae’s mom, since he doesn’t like to see Mom lonely. Aw.

She covers up and tells him that she isn’t, since she has two sons, and mentions hearing from his brother Hyung-joo, and takes the whole thing relatively in stride and tells him to worry about Eun-jae.

She does a better job of reading the icy air between Eun-jae and her mother, and guesses that it’s no ordinary rift, and that it probably tears her up to live without seeing her mother. That gives him pause.

When Hyung-woo returns to the office, Eun-jae is looking at the pictures proving their cheating husband case, and he jumps in to declare how he doesn’t understand how husbands can cheat on their pretty wives.

He tells her that at least the whole misunderstanding about cheating has been cleared up, since he was meeting her mother. She tells him that meeting Mom in secret is worse than cheating, because to her, it’s a bigger betrayal.

He doesn’t understand, because Mom asked him not to say anything what was he supposed to do? Oy. Eun-jae spells it out for him – if it were her in that situation, she would’ve come home and told him, and asked what he thought.

Eun-jae: “Because you’re the center of my life. But I’m not the center of yours. That’s why we’re always at odds.” Oof. It’s sad, but true.

To make her point that she’s serious about divorce, she drags him out to make the announcement in front of their staff. She tells them that they’ll either end it quietly in consensual divorce, or drag it out to court.

Hyung-woo insists that it’s not going to happen, while the Hope staff stands aghast. They already know, but it’s another thing to have it admitted to their faces. Woo-shik worries that Eun-jae is the type to see things through if she says she will, but Hyung-woo assures them he’ll change her mind.

He asks her for a conversation, and she agrees that she can’t very well avoid dialogue when it’s one of her own complaints about him in the divorce. Over wine he admits he was in the wrong about not consulting her before continuing to meet her mother.

He explains his thinking, that he assumed over time he could bring the two of them together to reconcile their differences. Eun-jae tells him this is another reason why they’re getting divorced – because he would continue to meet with Mom openly, and every time he came home, he’d tell Eun-jae to reconcile with her.

“And then I become the bad person for not seeing my mother.” I really like this aspect of Eun-jae’s character – that she has such fierce pride, and hates being forced to be the bad guy. It’s detrimentally fierce, in her case, but I think it makes her character so richly flawed.

She tells him that there are some scars that you don’t even want to look at, would rather pretend they didn’t exist, because they’ll remind you of the pain that caused it. And for her, that’s her mother.

He tells her that he understands (He clearly has some experience with this but isn’t letting on, perhaps to do with his brother?) but she tells him that he wouldn’t know unless he experienced that kind of pain firsthand.

He tries to take her home, but she reminds him that she kicked him out, and adds that he should address her not as his wife, but as Lawyer Lee, handling his wife’s divorce case. Ouch.

He heads home to mom’s house, and thinks over Eun-jae’s words. And then he takes out a picture from a drawer – it’s Hyung-woo, Mom, and Little Bro Hyung-joo. Knew it. Little Bro Angst, though over what, we don’t know.

At home, Eun-jae cries thinking of Mom, and starts talking at her out loud to herself. She asks why she hasn’t bought any clothes for herself, why she looks like that and suffers that way, why she doesn’t listen to her daughter. Aw.

She cries like a little girl, clearly hating to see her mom suffer, despite it all.

Hyung-woo surprises his mom in the morning, glossing over the whole kicked to the curb thing, and says that they’re spending some time apart while they work things out. He immediately starts nagging her for the mess in the house, and demands food, making Mom grumble.

What kind of kid is cleaner than his mom? That’s crazy. I love that Mom is already tired of his nagging, which is just such a great reversal from the norm.

Eun-jae starts her morning with a cold bowl of cereal and surveys the messy apartment, wondering if life could be this comfortable without nagging. It seems half happy, half trying to convince herself she’s happy.

The Hope staff discusses the divorce situation over lunch along with Soju, deciding that they have to try and intervene. Gogi and Soju fight over who should talk to Eun-jae, both clearly afraid of her. Ha.

But they’re more afraid of Professor Jo, who arrives at Soju’s call and flips out to hear that the couple has yet to call it quits on the divorce. He marches his little legs over to Hope to give them a piece of his mind.

The couple sits down, preparing for the worst, but to their surprise, the professor doesn’t even raise his voice, asking pleasantly if they’re planning to take the divorce all the way to the end. Eun-jae ekes out that she’s sorry, and he just nods and says that he’ll begin the proceedings so that it’ll be over quickly and quietly.

Hyung-woo flips out at the professor, thinking he was on his side, and storms out of the meeting angrily. Professor Jo finds him outside and slaps him upside the head for being a moron, and tells him of his plan to drag out the hearings so long that they have to reconcile. He warns Hyung-woo not to let it get to court though, and Hyung-woo hugs him in gratitude.

While Eun-jae works on the cheating husband case, Hyung-woo takes on a new case acting as a public defender for a juvenile, a teenage girl who got caught stealing a motorcycle.

He doesn’t ply her with questions, and instead asks advice on his own situation, specifically what would cause a daughter not to see her mother. She tells him it’s a sure thing that the mom abandoned the daughter.

He wonders how that could be, but the girl tells him that not all moms are fairytale mothers. Clearly reflecting on her own life, she mutters, “How can she abandon her daughter to go back to that man? That’s not a mother. That’s a stranger.”

He has enough insight to read into her words, and starts on a quest to find the girl’s mother. Why is it that you are super insightful and great with people, and yet have none of those qualities when dealing with your own wife?

He ponders the girl’s words along with Eun-jae’s insistence that her relationship with her mother is the unfixable kind. He looks up and realizes that he ended up in front of their apartment instead of going to his mom’s.

He wonders if Eun-jae is home and heads up, only to come right back down, grumbling that she changed the lock code AGAIN. And this is surprising to you? You were still technically living there when she did it the last time.

Eun-jae drinks and sighs that Hyung-woo is making things difficult by dragging out the divorce, and HotBar just tells her that no matter what choices she makes, even if they’re the wrong ones, he’ll be on her side and cheer her on. Aw, I love this guy.

She smiles, and says sadly that it’s something she always wanted to hear from Hyung-woo.

Hyung-woo sits outside and waits for her to come home, and sees her get out of her car… with HotBar behind the wheel. Oh dear. He gets immediately territorial and asks who he is, and Eun-jae nonchalantly introduces him as a dongseng (a younger friend).

HotBar braces himself for the inevitable awkward first meeting. Hyung-woo responds that there are MANY kinds of dongsengs, and she ignores him and tells HotBar he can go. But Hyung-woo’s having none of that, and insists on introducing himself. He puts out his hand for a shake.

HotBar takes his hand and introduces himself as Lee Tae-young (AH! So he DOES have a name!) and then they proceed to squeeze the hell out of the other’s hand, in a really pathetic display of machismo. Hee.

Eun-jae finally has to break it up, and HotBar says his goodbye, that he’ll see him next time. Hyung-woo reads into it too much, “Will there… BE a next time?” Tae-young just turns to Eun-jae and smiles at her sweetly, and with a hand on her arm, he says he’ll go.

Hyung-woo’s eyes bug out and as soon as he turns to go, he pulls Eun-jae close. She shakes him off and tells him not to think anything weird. Now the shoe’s on the other foot and he demands to know what their relationship is.

She vaguely just says that it’s complicated, but not anything he should misunderstand, and he rubs it in that it’s frustrating to be on that side, isn’t it? I’m not sure you want to go there, not that either of you is good at explaining away any doubt.

He follows her up to the apartment, still shouting, and she asks why he even came. He tells her that he missed her, and wanted to comfort her about her mom. She retorts, “I’ve already been comforted. By someone else!” Oooh, dayum.

Exasperated, he declares that they really are at odds with each other, and she’s like, duh, hence the divorce. In his anger, he relents that a day like today really makes him want to divorce her, and she just encourages him to comply then.

He’s not quite ready to do that, so he turns to go, nagging at her for the mess on his way out.

He comes home to Mom’s, complaining even more than usual about every little thing, sending her over the edge. She goes to see Eun-jae’s mom the next day, and they agree to keep the peace and even go back to banmal.

Hyung-woo’s mom asks her to call Eun-jae and beg her to take her son back, so that he’ll leave her alone and stop nagging. Heh. She sympathizes with Eun-jae’s mom, wondering how hard it must be for her to have such a strained relationship with her daughter.

Tensions run high at the Hope office, when Hyung-woo declines to take a congressman’s case that would have raked in a bunch of money. That leads Eun-jae to publicly declare the office is hers since she invested more into it.

The staff decides they can’t stand by any longer, and attempt to talk things out with the couple over lunch. But lunch turns into a battle over the minutiae of how to properly grill samgyupsal, and they’re forced to walk away from the screaming couple in embarrassment. Ha.

Eun-jae’s mom calls Hyung-woo to ask him out on a date, and she happily buys him an expensive dinner and asks him to go to a noraebang, where they sing to their hearts’ content. He walks her home hand-in-hand, and she looks so happy the whole time, it kills me.

When they reach her door, Mom tells him not to come by anymore. Aw. She says that she made Eun-jae lonely, so he needs to work things out and go back home (and stop making things hard for his mom, heh) and be there for Eun-jae.

He tries to say that he’ll make it work, but Mom just takes one last long look at his face, as her goodbye. It’s heartbreaking, that Mom is giving up her one connection to her daughter that she was so happy to have, and it sends the sensitive Hyung-woo over the edge.

He storms into Eun-jae’s office and asks angrily if she’s happy now that she has what she wants, and says that her mom won’t see him anymore. Hyung-woo: “There are people who don’t get to see family even if they want to!”

Eun-jae: “There’s family you’re forced to live with, even if you don’t want to!” He looks pained, as he asks, “So the family you’re forced to live with now… is me?” He wonders to himself if there’s any meaning in living this way.

Eun-jae goes to court for the cheating husband divorce case, and the husband ends up conceding to the divorce. The mother-in-law stands up to confess that he never cheated; it’s because he stood by her sick and now comatose daughter for over seven years, that she wanted to force him to move on with his life. She knew divorce was the only way to do so.

Aw. He embraces his mother-in-law, who tells him that he’s a son to her, and that this is what her daughter would have wanted for him. It moves Eun-jae, who’s shocked to realize she was wrong about the non-cheating husband, and also stirred by his relationship with his mother-in-law, who pushed him away for his own good.

She sits outside the courthouse, contemplating that relationship and her own, and then goes in to meet Hyung-woo for their own divorce proceedings. They sit down with Professor-Judge Jo, who refuses to leave the room when the shrink asks for their statements regarding the divorce.

Eun-jae starts, saying that the differences that drew them to each other initially became vast areas of contention between them in their marriage. But then she adds with tears in her eyes that she realized something, only today…

Eun-jae: That there’s an even bigger problem: I didn’t know love. If only I knew how to love properly, it would have been better. I never, not once, properly loved my husband.

Aw. She’s finally owning up to her faults, and opening her heart… only Hyung-woo takes it totally the wrong way. Instead of hearing it as “I never gave love properly,” he hears it as “I never really loved him.” (It’s easily interpreted both ways, though her intention is clear to everyone but Hyung-woo.)

He flips out, thanking her bitterly for teaching him something he didn’t know. She tries to explain that she’s attempting to tell him what she did wrong, and trying to work things through…

Oh no. Is she thinking of backing out of the divorce, only now you’re set to see it through??

He accuses her of putting on a show to get more sympathy in the divorce and shouts that the hearing isn’t going to settle this, not between them. “Let’s go! To court!”

Aw crap.


Ack! Why do you not hear the words coming out of her mouth?! I don’t think Hyung-woo’s being unreasonable or even that quick to jump to his contentious conclusions, since he’s been pleading with her and she’s been so cold and definite about the divorce. It’s just… she was finally meeting you halfway… and then you pooped all over it! Aaaaaargh.

It looks like in the family dynamics, Hyung-woo empathizes more with Eun-jae’s mom because his experience is that of being the older brother who is kept from having a relationship with Little Bro, for reasons yet unknown. It makes sense then, that his feelings come down more on the side of Mom, wondering why Eun-jae has to be so cold and final, to cut off ties completely.

It’s sad because if these two ever managed to say things the right way, without attacking each other and getting defensive, they’d be great for each other. But they handle everything in the worst possible way, like when Hyung-woo storms in after parting with her mother in that accusatory tone rather than a sympathetic one.

When HotBar tells Eun-jae that he’s on her side no matter what and she sighs at hearing what she’s always wanted to hear… from the wrong person, it kills me. Because that’s sort of the whole reason to get married, to have someone in your corner at all times, but it’s never the case with Hyung-woo, and vice versa.

What I really like is that no matter which way the pendulum swings in this drama, there isn’t a hateful character anywhere to be found. Everyone is a sympathetic human being with circumstances and a distinct personality, and the conflicts arise out of natural disagreements and different ways of seeing things.

I so appreciate a drama without a set of horrid second leads or arch villains, because while they are an easy source of conflict, they’re also lazy writing, with little real-world relevance. I like that this couple’s main source of conflict is really themselves, and their vastly different views on everything from family to money to proper meat grilling. It asks the hilariously mundane but universally shared quandary: Can you live your whole life with a person who doesn’t know how to cook your bacon?


69 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. bethanygaile

    and now its the other way around…

  2. myweithisway

    Oh man, I’m definitely jumping ship for HotBar

  3. blue

    awwww…it’s so sad that he took her feelings the wrong way

    I think this drama is awesome but I feel like they need to make Hyung Woo’s decisions a little more convincing

  4. kopi

    i teared up just from reading this… 🙁

    • 4.1 daisy

      me too.

      many thanks to girlfriday.

      amazing recap, amazing actor and actress and great sctipt.

    • 4.2 anantatoer

      Me third..just a little ^^ Sometime there are some pains that cut so deep, you just cant help it. I heart Eun Jae.

      Thanks GF.

      • 4.2.1 lucille

        me too (or is it 4 🙂 )! Im hurting for all the characters esp the main leads and moms.. Such creative writing of the writer that it delves with reality and relevant issue but without making the story draggy, boring, and nonsense, and still keeping the funny/rom-com part of the story… The leads (CJW/YSH) as well as their supports were very very good in projecting the right emotions that the story needed and showing us what a normal person would feel in each/different situation…THUMBS UP for the whole crew!

  5. Minnetter

    Thanks~ I’m really enjoying the recaps… I’d like to watch it but im watching PTB right now and that’s all the time I have to watch dramas…

  6. elle05

    yehey it’s up i’ve been refreshing the pge for 2 hours.. thanks girlfriday for your recap on this drama 🙂

  7. zsa

    I think the divorce has to happen in order for these two to find themselves again, learn from their mistakes, and realize what they have lost. Though many married couples stay on and discover these setbacks slowly, theirs is just a cumulation of a lot of things amounting to a big hill of repressed emotions. I’m looking forward to seeing how they reconcile as this drama has strong plot and character build up….

  8. ck1Oz

    Oh man,didn’t expect that divorce case confession.It made me tear up…which was a huge surprise to me.

    Thank you for the recap.It is a good little drama just not the most popular.

    Sigh why are you on this timeslot?It’s getting very tiring trying to find subbers to complete the subs every day.

    • 8.1 Ann

      dear ck10Z
      regarding softsub….you can try viki softsub…it’s great !!
      thanks woo woo team subber….


      • 8.1.1 ck1Oz

        Haha…dear Ann I am from the Woo Woo Team and i/c of the Ko-En subbing subbers.
        It’s been tough getting subs completed.Last week’s is still not done.

        • Ann

          Hee Hee….Fighting ka !!! We will be patiently wait. Many thank and really really appreciate your team hardwork !!!

  9. Ann

    Thank for the recap GF…I’m crying reading your recap too…
    Looking forward for next week….War from HW side begin….but see next week preview….seem to be hilarious.

  10. 10 jadeacl

    Please, PLEASE, don’t let HW’s estrangement with his brother be because of a girl, the ex. It’d be a setback to an otherwise fairly lovely un-Kdrama-esque plot.

    • 10.1 JD

      omg i know -_-. we have enough of those plots in kdrama history

  11. 11 mary

    Love your insight on the lack of (or minimal) focus on 2nd leads in this drama.

    Can’t Lose looks like what would’ve happened if most of the kdramas where girl-meets-boy-falls-deeply-in-love-and-marries is continued. Showing the consequences of not really knowing someone before choosing to spend your life with them.

  12. 12 Cynthia

    Thanks for the rapid recap, GF!

    I love the way many of these recent dramas have skewed their characterizations to show reality – no one’s black or white, we’re all comprised of shades of grey and it’s refreshing to see dramas reflecting this. Protect the Boss does this admirably also.

    I find it amusing and realistic to see this drama demonstrating how men and woman HEAR what the other says, but too few LISTEN to what is said – hence, many councilors force couples to repeat back word-for-word what the other has said. I’ve been married for many years and I know the SECOND that my husband isn’t listening to me. It’s like radar in my head! 🙂

    This continues to be a thoughtful and sensitive drama without going too overboard.

  13. 13 ikhh307

    thank you gf for the awesome recap. i ve been reading your recap this whole time but now i am off to download and watch ep 1. 😛

  14. 14 Sierra

    I don’t know why but seeing pics of CJW in this episode enough to bring tears to my face. Her expressions speak a thousand words: pain, sadness, disappointment so vividly. I guess she is called Melo Wang for a very good reason! she’s really good with crying scenes. Although I don’t like melo dramas and I know her previous dramas were all about tragic and the cries were excessive. But in this episode, I sympathized with her. And her cries are justified.

  15. 15 Ani

    Oh man, I so love this drama right now. I’m kicking myself for only reading the recaps instead of watching the drama. I actually need to catch up now. This makes me want to watch the j-dorama even more. Now, another one to add to the list. Not enough minutes in a day I tell you. Not enough.

    Now, ratings doesn’t mean crap and never defines the quality of a drama, but gorrammit, it kind of sucks when a drama you like doesn’t get the ratings you wish it had. If only you had aired a few weeks sooner dearest drama. If only. You may have a fighting chance yet…. Maybe. Ganbatte ne~

    • 15.1 Julia

      YOu should watch this one. Funny dialogue is better when watched than read. Who knew that CJW can do comedy, she’s quite great at it. I am surprised she hadn’t done comedy earlier. The chemistry between CJW and YSH? hm..need I say more? awesome.

      I just finished watching A Star’s Lover and I can’t believe how different CJW in this drama. Where’s the tender, poignant, poised lady? I see an abrasive, loud, sarcastic lady in CL haha. Even the way she talks in CL is different, like she perhaps adds an accent? since I am not Korean I don’t know but how she stresses and pronounces her words in CL is quite different from her past dramas. For ex like when she said “crazy” in Korean, it just sounded funny to me. Not sure how to explain this.

  16. 16 yingz

    i teared up reading about the date with Eun Jae’s Mum, sobz T.T

  17. 17 sarange

    Amazing recaps. Both you and Javabeans are really good at reading between the fine lines. There are so many nuances in their dialogue that is so easily missed by non-korean viewers or any viewers for that matter.

    What I enjoy the most of this drama is how well the dialogues are intricately developed. THe premise of this drama is simple. About two people who are in love yet struggle to live day to day with each other.

    I want to express my gratitude once more to Javabeans and Girlfriday for recapping this series. I really appreciate that they are willing to recap low ratings dramas.

    • 17.1 Julia

      Girlfriday, A little request, can you add Yoon Sang Hyun’s OST in here? I think his song is appropriate so I can read the summary while hearing the song.

      • 17.1.1 Ani

        You might want to ask jb instead. girlfriday once commented on a recap before that adding music to her recaps wasn’t her style. Hahaha.

    • 17.2 CJ

      Agree with you a hundred and one percent about how JB and GF’s recaps help us find more insight into the drama. Already love this one despite not being able to watch it yet but will definitely find the time to do so (perhaps after SOAW?)

      To Javabeans and Girlfriday: Many, many thanks from the bottom of our non-Korean hearts!

      By the way, I may be out of topic here but just want to mention how I also like that the Coffee Prince moms are here too 🙂

  18. 18 Angel

    Hm, a very realistic drama that one could identify with. I hate most is HW seems to be sensitive towards others but not EJ’s feeling. After the karaoke session, HW stormed back to the office and accused EJ for being cold towards her mother without realizing that mother and daughter relationship did not soured overnight. It must have been some great hurt that resulted the strain. HW has taken the whole thing lightly. HW does not seem to understand EJ. It is very sad that you have to pour out your sorrow to another person other than your husband and also not receiving any support. No matter, they keep emphasizing ‘loneliness’ in this episode because there is no love, understanding and support only full of cumulative misunderstanding. As a woman, I sympathized with EJ.

    • 18.1 selina

      the misunderstanding and miscommunication works two fold for this couple. Just as EJ has to pour her heart out to another person and receive support from others. HW does the same. He goes to his co-workers, his mom, her mom, his ex, hell a tape recorder to get his feelings out. Just as in life our experiences influence our thoughts. HW’s obvious relationship strain with his brother is a big factor to how he responds to EJ-mom situation. I take it perhaps he knows how it feels to be in mom shoes (be the one that gets rejected for connection) so he understands and empathizes with her. I wish the two of them could listen really listen to each other. It is so obvious they love each. They just need to learn to love each other.

  19. 19 laya

    Thanks for the recap!

  20. 20 laya

    Thanks for the recap!

  21. 21 Julia

    It makes sense for EJ to say that she doesn’t know love since she didn’t get from her mom (who chose someone else over her own). Not receiving proper love from your family can mess you up pretty bad.
    I also understand because of the hurt from her mom, she put up a tough exterior because that’s the only way she knows how.

    I am looking forward to the next episodes, where I she will gradually re-learn to love properly and in return, she will receive love too.

    • 21.1 minsun

      Hey Julia
      thanks for your insightful comment!
      reading your comment makes me wonder too if her disappointment with her mum and her abandonment issues has also made her so sensitive to how Hyung Woo always seem to put others in the centre of his life. She has said many times in the last few eps that his problem is that he is always thinking of others and he hardly stands up for her (in front of his mum ,etc.) She was so happy the one time he stood up for her in front of his mum…

      • 21.1.1 Julia

        Minsun, you are spot on! The two occasions that I remember: 1) like you already mentioned, she kissed him when he stood up for her in front of his mom. 2)in ep 6, he said he missed her and wanted to comfort her due to her painful issue with mom. This statement from him caught her attention and made her rethink later when she was alone. She appreciated it even when she didn’t say out loud. That’s her love language, for someone who stays by her side (physically & emotionally) no matter what. If her only family couldn’t even stay by her side, how can she expect that someone else would stay by her too? it’s kinda sad. Which is why she said that she gives up easily.

  22. 22 happysloth

    Thanks for the recap.

    “For a drama about breaking up, there sure is a lot of love.” So true! I cried buckets just reading your recap. Must buy the DVDs soon as they’re available here.

    Have a lovely weekend y’all.

  23. 23 bei

    im so emotional while reading your recap! thank you so much. haayy im loving this drama so much full of laugh but with sense. i love how the story being made

  24. 24 chuachumill

    nobody gonna recap A 1000 kisses?…but theres..erm..ryu jin…erm…n theres also..a witch dat will be fun to rant later…such a b**ch!and a husband..darn hes dumb and a cheater too..thrice!grrrrrrr

  25. 25 via

    Thanks Javabean and GF for the recap.. CJW is so good expressing her feeling here and its not like we are watching melo drama, because its a rom com drama.. so I think she’s doing a great job here.. crying without turning this drama around from rom com to melo 🙂 I hope she can keep up her good acting here.. CJW FIGHTING!!!

  26. 26 Noelle

    Damn! I don’t want her to back out even though thats a huge step for her character wise. I really want the divorce to go through.

  27. 27 SmurfY

    Excuse me, for those of you who said this drama is very realistic. May I ask how many of you are actually a divorcee? I believe none of you are!! So, please stop praising the script writer!! I believe she is one of the most incompetent one in Korea. The storyline is craps and the divorce procedures have too many flaws and the Judge himself is in contempt of court.

    EJ should institute due process and have the Judge and her husband strike off from The Korean Bar
    Council!!! make EJ fight a good fight and don’t back off half way!! her chances to win is lot higher than her husband. it is an easy case to pin down her husband!!

  28. 28 SmurfY

    Excuse me, for those of you who said this drama is very realistic. May I ask how many of you are actually a divorcee? I believe none of you are!! So, please stop praising the script writer!! I believe she is one of the most incompetent one in Korea. The storyline is craps and the divorce procedures have too many flaws and the Judge himself is in contempt of court.

    EJ should institute due process and have the Judge and her husband strike off from The Korean Bar
    Council!!! make EJ fight a good fight and don’t back off half way!! her chances to win is lot higher than her husband. it is an easy case to pin down her husband!!

    hehe..I am going to be on LEJ side in Dramabeans, but pro in Starjiwoo!! That’s fun since the drama is really too simple for a law drama!!

    • 28.1 add

      I can’t understand what you want to tell… but how see you don’t like this drama it is not realistic. May be PTB is realistic drama for you. Yes “can’t lose” simple but it is not law drama it is com drama. EJ fights not to win her husband she fights to understand what she did and should do. “She is one of the most incompetent in Korea”. If it is true. Wow, You korean are most talented people in the world. If the most incompetent one plays so good in drama or movie. I am envy you guys. For CJW Good luck. Even you are one of most unable person in Korea. You are great actress for us no korean…

      • 28.1.1 SmurfY

        You seem to misconstrue my meaning. I did not doubt CJW acting, and I think she played Angry Bird and Moo-Moo Cow really well in this drama.

        My concerns is with the plot and the storyline. both CJW and YSH had quarreled for a good 5 episodes before us seeing the subplot started to develop. For a good PD and script writer, they will normally lay down a lot of clues that lead to a bigger plot in the 1st and 2nd episodes. Then, it will add spice to the main plot.

        CJW said she wanted to become a rom com queen, but so far she did not show much of her funny side. I saw her only getting angry, and now getting sad. CJW has wider acting repertoire that simply showing anger and sad. She has the ability to show the emotions of betrayal and more jealousy, disappointment because of lost of trust fro her mom, her dad and her husband, despair, greed, attachment, desire and detachment, ignorance of love (only started to show in Episode 6), pride, ego and stubbornness….to make her more lively.

        the script writer instead makes her into a naive lawyer who has little respect for human decency ( to her husband) and some understanding of civil liberty.

        As for YSH, I also believe the script writer can make him a lot more interesting. He is too dull, dumb and passive as a civil rights lawyer. It is very unrealistic because personally I do know a lot of civil rights lawyers (at least two of them are fro south Korea), they are definitely not so dumb and dull like YSH!!

        • add

          You should not use so big sentence like this “She is one of the most incompetent in Korea”. Just to say that. She did something for popularity korean entertainment at least to be respected. We can’t deny her acting ability just cause you don’t like her childish behavior in somewhere. Second I am sure writer keeping most interesting and funny action for further episodes. CJW said she wanted to become a rom com queen. If she said that. It means she want to bring something new to rom com drama of korea. She should not repeat what someone already did. She wants to discovery new side of rom com drama. She deserved to go by her own way to show new unusual side of com drama. So why we are waiting her in new drama. She may leave for us something to feel deeply and think for long. So i am looking forward for this drama there would be sad, funny, fool various things what could be in real life.

        • SmurfY

          Again you misconstrue my big sentence. When I said she is the most incompetent one is Korea, I meant the script writer!!

          I think she is wasting the talents of CJW and YHS!!

      • 28.1.2 SmurfY

        Looking at the progress of Can’t Lose, I am not sure whether I am watching a comedy, romantic comedy, dark comedy, law drama, family drama or melodrama?

        As I recalled when I warned My Name is Kim Sam Soon, I have started to laugh from the very beginning, it is indeed a light and funny drama; whereas, I do not find this drama provides me with any laughter. I just found it very noisy and the arguments are neither civilized nor witty and sophisticated as one would expect coming from the mouths of two lawyers.

        Frankly, unaware leakage of CJW childish demeanor of feet stomping in the first 4 episodes at public places does not carry well in her professional appearance.

        • Suri

          “Frankly, unaware leakage of CJW childish demeanor of feet stomping in the first 4 episodes at public places does not carry well in her professional appearance.”

          Well people generally behave quite different when they are at home surrounded by family & friends than at work. Of course even professional people often act childish in front of their spouse. This is consistent with EJ’s character description: she’s professional and upright at work but childish and frugal at home. I don’t find this disparity to be that surprising. We all are like that, with many varying degree.

          • SmurfY

            I meant stomping feet at public places. 1st scene at the railway station, 2nd time outside the SPA, 3rd time outside the cafe…..and many countless time throughout 1st to 5th episode. no feet stomping spotted in episode 6 which is good!!

          • SmurfY

            Wonder have you ever seen Mitchell Obama, Cherie Blair, Hillary Clinton or Lee Kwan Yew’s deceased wife stomping their feet in public places? I am talking about an attorney demeanor in public places and not at home!!

            hehe…I am a very different person at work and a very childish smurfy talking to you, right now!!

        • smurfkimchi

          Smurfy is enjoying penning over here on DB. He can’t do anything on CJW fan’s website. Whatever is his viewpoint, good or bad, the web mistress doesn’t know. Just slash/smash and bang the door. Stomping? Must be on the pc table. Actually the site is not run by CJW but by some women who acquainted with her and they are just acting big. Empty vessels make more noise.
          It ratings are not important then why do the TV stations do the ratings for? We would like to see Can’t Lose ratings improving without blaming the other dramas.

  29. 29 Abbie

    I cried two times. When Eun-jae was speaking to her mother who wasn’t there and when the divorce case she was handling ended. Those were both beautiful scenes and my appreciation for her character grew. I think I like her more than Hyung-woo, if only by a slim margin. I can see Hyung-woo’s point of view on everything as well as Eun-jae’s. It’s so frustrating, because I really want to pick a side, but can’t because I like them both! I’m glad the mothers are reconciled. Now, I hope that Eun-jae reconciles with her mother, and Hyung-woo with his brother. I can’t wait for next week!

    Thanks for the recap, Girlfriday!

  30. 30 suzanna

    Aissshhh..Protect the Boss will get a 2 episode extension, which means our butt will be kicked 2 weeks longer:-(( I wish once PTB and PM end, it’s our chance for Can’t Lose to gain more viewers, wishful thinking

  31. 31 umalily

    I want to watch this drama, but her plastic surgery weirds me out. Maybe if I watch her mobile face she won’t look a medical experiment.

  32. 32 Dara

    This show keeps making me switch side, this ep I’m with the hubby, I want EJ to slow down and try to sort it out before the real divorce which surely she will regret that afterwards.
    Thanks, GF ^^

  33. 33 asianromance

    thanks for the recap, girlfriday, and for giving us the insight into how certain lines of dialogue could be misinterpreted by the other party.

    i was pleasantly surprised by this drama, especially with the lack of horrid 2nd leads, which is one of my pet peeves in kdrama writing. I wonder if this is because it’s based off the j-dorama. Anyways I’m loving it!

    • 33.1 belleza

      “I wonder if this is because it’s based off the j-dorama”

      Pretty much. The big tell that is based on a J-dorama is the use of a bar to lay out frank conversation rather than street stall. Very, very Japanese.

      This is a very Japanese show.

      1) Often the adults have up-and-down relationships with their parents, that have nothing to do with being a chaebol or filial piety.

      2) There’s skinship between the husband and wife, but there’s little real affection or straightforward declaration of love. Unless it’s a Japanese melodrama, you may see it once or twicce.

      3) The show is very episodic. Almost every episode has a unique case, which leads to a new lesson about their relationship.

      4) The wife is high strung. The husband is dense. Hello every Japanese Office Lady drama ever made!! 😉

      This show isn’t as funny as the original, partially because the writer is not sure how to depict the male character who isn’t standing from a place of superior privilege or emotional authority. And the comic timing between the two leads isn’t very good. However, when the show goes into its more serious territory, both are very strong, and it comes across as a real domestic conflict.

      • 33.1.1 SmurfY

        The writer does not know how to depict non alpha male character is not really an issue. The problem is that she is depicting YHS like a son, and CJW as his mother!!! That’s the problem!!! She is ordering her husband like her son.

        Speaking about mother, my mom has never ordered me around like what LEJ did to HW. Neither did my mom order my dad around like a dog. What I have seen in CL is really an extreme and unrealistic. but, yes I agree that the comic timing is sucks between YHS and CJW!! I just feel so sorry for HW when he knelt down and yet got bitten by LEJ.

        MBC is now trying to advertise CL as Tom and Jerry. I believe it is really out of date. They should use Angry Bird vs the Pig.

        talking bout com-com queen, I still Kim Su Ah is still the best. CJW, can best classify as desperately trying to be funny, but really turn out giving the audience a bitter taste, and definitely not sweet at all!!

  34. 34 giddygirl108

    Can you live your whole life with a person who doesn’t know how to cook your bacon?

    Genius statement in so many ways.

    • 34.1 SmurfY

      My sister-in-law cannot really cook well. All her cooking tastes like baby food, but my brother treats her like Goddess, surprisingly, the word Goddess is coming out from my dad’s mouth recently!!! Hahaha….my mom said he is jealous!!!

  35. 35 Angel

    Thanks for the recap, really enjoy watching the show. Agree to have HW and hot bar together more often. It was comical when the two met. HW trying to show off his manliness, very funny. Hot bar can act too, his expression was cool.

  36. 36 McQueen

    CJW is definitely getting senile…after 3 yrs hiatus, she made such a lousy choice….tsk tsk tsk…

    No manager to help her choose a proper script? Or not many offered?

    She tries too hard to be a married women….failed miserably…maybe that’s why she is still not able to fulfill that role.

    Feet stamping, angry wrinkled expression…and lots of yelling….so lame and passé….

  37. 37 Ahjumma

    I can’t stand the wife though I know the husband isn’t perfect either. Reminds me of War of the Roses at times.

  38. 38 SmurfY

    I guess she lost too much weight, that’s the reasons she looks older than an average 36-year old.

    As for the choice of script, i think “Can’t Lose” is a budget production. You can tell from the place they shoot the place and where they held the press conference.

    Why she chose to participate in this drama remains a mystery to me. May be it is like what she said she wanted to have a big change.

    Ironically, what I can see is that apart from being an Angry Bird who keep shouting, throwing tantrum and making things flying all over place, while stomping her feet, she posed no change to Li Ma Ri!!

    • 38.1 Lydia

      Yes, she’s not young anymore after all she’s 36. I am tired of reading a few of you criticizing her looks saying she’s getting senile etc. She’s too not immune from natural tear & wear. I at least appreciate that she didn’t do a face lift or loads herself with surgery that would make her look young. How do you feel when you are 40 and someone said something bad about your looks? People can be so mean.

      Comedy is a hard genre to hit right. Everyone has their different preferences when it comes to comedy. Some like crude humor, some like dry humor, some like Seinfield while others enjoy Frasier.
      For my taste, I actually find Can’t Lose and Yes..CJW funny. I really believe that she has a knack for a rom com and am surprised she hadn’t done it sooner. Again..I fall for simple and “married” humor because I can relate to them.

      Out of those two main characters, I find EJ character to be richer and complex than HW. HW is any other man’s character , pretty easy to read. EJ is more layered.

      Some said that the issues in this drama aren’t big enough. I tend to disagree. Yes, they are not as big if you compared to spouse dying, mother killer, lost brother, issues like in a typical k-drama. But they are exaggerated , and have little relevance in real world.
      HW & EJ issues are BIG if you are married. Anyone who’s married can see that their relationship is at the brink of divorce. Yes, CL doesn’t have any big hooks or anything like that and the premise of the drama is simple. About two people who are in love yet have to find ways to live with each other. and how they maneuver their relationship is realistic and relatable.
      But what I love the most is their witty dialogue.

      Younger viewers may not enjoy as much because they can’t relate to the issues in marriage?

      Now can we just focus on the drama instead of criticizing the actors appearance?

      • 38.1.1 SmurfY

        Sorry, not meant to offend you and her fellow fans. I am having this strange feeling of watching Meryl Streep’s Death Becomes Hers in CJW, especially so in CL. Er…sorry, that’s my honest opinion!! 🙁

        Just hope she will age gracefully like Meryl Streep in person, and not like Meryl’s character in the movie below:


  39. 39 McQueen

    Senile is either mental or physical infirm with age. And I don’t intend to mince my words…as a actress, her features and maintaining her body is a way to show respect to ppl who supports her. At the same time, she MUST also be prepared for ppl who see things differently. I meant senile on my first part is really targeting her poor choice of script….I have already emphasize my stand unless you choose to misconstrue it. If you are wise enough…you would have read…that through this poor choice of script, she ended portraying a role (which could have expel her to greater heights and deeper maturity in character) BUT she choose to play it safe as a trade-mark…which is to me lame and passe ….as some had already commented…she is suppose to be a lawyer by profession…..does it mean beyond that role….she can’t behave like one…her yelling and feet stomping/stamping is really childish….plus her wrinkles makes her look UGLY now.

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