Sometimes it takes the sound of a tiny heartbeat to turn the heel of a cold-hearted Medusa. Split between the growing responsibility inside of her and the external pressures around her, Ji-an will have to carve her own path in the unexpected journey to motherhood.
EPISODE 7 RECAP
After Eun-sung’s stinging confession, Ji-an swallows hard and accepts that things worked out for the better. He’s a good man and for the briefest of moments, if she were to ever consider marriage; it would be with a man like him.
If he can act like the perfect son-in-law for the worst woman ever, how much better could he treat someone who deserved it? “So stop wasting your time and love on me and find someone else. Build a happy life together.”
She steps inside to break the news when Eun-sung stops her. He kneels in front of the families, telling them, “I can’t go through with this marriage. I don’t think I’m suited for marriage. I don’t think I’m capable to make Ji-an happy like this. I’m sorry.”
Shocked faces all around save for Dad whose scowl I can feel from here.
Once they’re alone, Mom and Dad turn to Ji-an, asking if this was her doing. They know that she previously lied about a fake business trip and Dad demands that she beg for Eun-sung’s forgiveness. And if she’s not willing to, he’ll do it himself.
Which is when Ji-an drops the bomb, “I’m pregnant.” Both parents stare in disbelief as Ji-an informs them that Eun-sung knows that it isn’t his. Shell-shocked, Mom collapses. When she hears that her pregnancy was an accident, Mom wails and pelts her, heartbroken. Ji-an clutches her stomach and cries.
Tae-kang waits outside of Ji-an’s apartment with his grandmother’s ring given to him by Dad. It slips out of his hand when he nods off and Eun-sung picks it up to return it to him. Oh right – you two don’t know each other.
They both wait, (Tae-kang adorably does exercises to keep himself awake), and Tae-kang is the first to break the silence – he’s been waiting over 2 hours for his lady and figures that she must be back at work, having forgotten all about him.
He reasons that she takes pleasure in work which Eun-sung mentions that it sounds like a lot like someone he knows. She should because you’re both waiting for the same woman.
Joking that Eun-sung must have it better because he’s waiting for a woman who throws punches and screams on a dime, Eun-sung retorts that he doesn’t. The woman he knows is inflexible and does everything her own way. Er, you are trying to woo this woman, right?
So Tae-kang asks why Eun-sung would date such a woman and Eun-sung turns the question back on him – then why does he love that witch? Laughing uncomfortably, Tae-kang corrects him that it’s not love but he’s just a wee bit curious.
When a tired Ji-an walks towards them, it’s Eun-sung who approaches first. Tae-kang realizes that they’ve been waiting for the same person and hangs back as Eun-sung leads Ji-an inside.
Eun-sung sighs deeply at the sight of a nearly empty refrigerator. He mentions that his words were too harsh and stemmed from a moment of anger. Ji-an asks if he’s here to apologize but he clarifies that he came to clear the air, not wanting to end things the way they did.
He admits, “For the first time, I dreamed of living together with someone. Waking up, eating, crying, and laughing together.” He thought that his life would be fun from now on and looked forward to it. “But things don’t always turn out the way you hoped.”
Ji-an tells him that people tend to live that way anyway while keeping guard of when they might be backstabbed.
After she told her parents that she was pregnant, it was the first time in her life that her mother hit her. In that moment, Ji-an reached for her stomach, afraid of what might happen to the life inside of her. Eun-sung answers, “Because it’s instinct.”
Ji-an says, “So… I’m going to keep the baby.” If someone like her can have maternal instinct, then she wants to anticipate what comes next. Eun-sung looks at her with a mix of relief and shock and accepts her decision.
Before he leaves, Ji-an returns the shoe necklace to Eun-sung and puts out her hand. They exchange a polite but lingering goodbye as Eun-sung gives a final squeeze of her hand.
At the restaurant, Choong-baek gives a I told you so that of course there’s another man in the picture, the chances now 50/50 that it’s Tae-kang’s. But Tae-kang mulls over that it could be a friend, a relative maybe, knowing that Medusa wouldn’t let just any guy in her house. Choong-baek points out, “You went. Twice.”
Tae-kang jumps on the defensive and then his voice trails off, “That’s because… I’m not any guy.” It annoys him that his buddy refers to him as tsukidashi (a tiny snack/appetizer) in Ji-an’s life. It’s not like she’s young or nice so why does Tae-kang like her? Which is when Tae-kang shouts, “Who said I like her?!”
He storms out, trying to make sense of the situation. Heh – I love that he tries to sketch the relationship between himself, Ji-an, and “that jerk” at work to organize his thoughts only to sigh, wondering who the father is.
Ji-an settles into her office as we flashback to the latter part of the conversation with her parents the previous evening. Dad conceded that Ji-an didn’t have to get married and could live out her own life.
He would throw in the towel about badgering about her life… on the condition that Ji-an doesn’t keep the baby. He’d given her three days to consider or Ji-an can continue living her life without seeing her parents.
Back in the present, Ji-an buries her head on her desk.
Tae-kang comes in bearing her lunch and just when he’s about to mention last night, her phone rings. It’s Eun-sung who suggests that Ji-an receive prenatal care at his hospital. And this is still ethical, how?
Ji-an politely refuses, since it would be awkward and uncomfortable to run into each other but Eun-sung insists that a doctor would maintain professionalism with his patient. Asking her to come to your hospital and increasing the odds that you might be the one caring for her doesn’t sound very competent to me.
I love it how Tae-kang constantly tries to eavesdrop on the conversation, even putting an ear to the door outside her office. He can’t hear a thing and then a voice behind him whispers, “Hear what?”
He jumps back in surprise as Na-ri gives a little smirk. She’s on her way to lunch and invites Tae-kang to join her.
Tae-kang grumbles on the rooftop, chomping down on his kimbap. He expected the VP to take him out for a fancy meal but Na-ri explains that she eats here since it’s odd to go out and eat alone.
Adding to their list of commonalities, turns out that Na-ri and Tae-kang are donggap and Tae-kang smugs that he’s a month older (“I’m the oppa!”). He comes crashing down to reality the next moment, remembering that Na-ri is still his boss.
Na-ri asks what kind of relationship he has with Ji-an. He tells her that there are only a select few women in his contact list he’s glad to hear from, others who he shrugs at, and about half who he wonders who they are. On that list, Ji-an falls under the ‘spam’ category and Na-ri can barely suppress a smile at that answer.
Facepalm. Jun-hee and Ji-an end up at Eun-sung’s hospital anyway and what do you know – he’ll be doing the ultrasound himself. I’m sure that breaks like 50 ethical principles, Doc.
Eun-sung comments that Ji-an’s reluctance must mean that she still sees him like a man while he doesn’t reciprocate that (Mmhmm okay). After a small tussle over her coverup, it’s only after he applies the cold ultrasound gel that he deadpans, “Oh it’s cold.” This part of your petty revenge, man?
As expected, he can barely maintain his poker face once the fetus comes into view as the reality cements before his eyes. Ji-an registers his reaction and asks if there’s anything wrong, but he reports that it appears healthy.
Jun-hee nudges that Ji-an didn’t hear “that” last time, meaning the baby’s heartbeat. Ji-an’s eyes grow wide at the sound of the beating heart fills the room and then asks to stop for a moment. Confused, she asks, “Is it always like this? I hear something strange.”
Alarmed, Jun-hee asks what she hears and Ji-an responds, “Gudoo/Gudoo/Gudoo (shoe).” They look at her as if she was going crazy and they listen once more. Ji-an turns to the screen, convinced that’s what she hears, and let out the tiniest of smiles.
As Ji-an sets down the cutest pair of pink baby heels amidst her shoe closet, she thinks back to her conversation with Jun-hee about the baby’s father earlier that day. Ji-an argued that it’s not like they’d be living together but Jun-hee reminded her that half her baby’s DNA belongs to him.
That means factors like whether he has a high IQ and his family’s genetic history are all important to keep in mind. Yes, the baby could take after Ji-an but it could also resemble the baby’s father or its grandfather. So she has to find out.
What better way to grab his attention then to send a text, “Jokbal. Within 15 minutes.” Tae-kang rushes over and then surveys her house. He asks, “Are you alone?” Ji-an raises an eyebrow, “Do I look alone? You’re here with me.”
He whines why she keeps ordering him around and Ji-an reminds him that he’s her slave until he recovers that design. She narrows her eyes, “Are you dumb?” Tae-kang takes offense – he might not have gotten good grades but he’s plenty smart enough.
Their entire exchange turns into a semi-interrogative interview as she nitpicks about everything he says and does (“Do you have mysophobia [fear of contamination and germs]? I hear that’s inheritable. Are you left-handed?!”)
As he steps away, Ji-an counts off to see how tall he is. (She measures his body proportions by counting off the number of “heads” with 8 heads tall as the usual ideal.)
Tae-kang hilariously praises himself in the mirror, misinterpreting Ji-an’s overtures as showing interest in him. He puffs up, “Sure. I’m not just any guy.” Then he sprays Ji-an’s perfume into the air and then rubs it on himself, taking in “Medusa’s scent.” Pffft.
Meanwhile, Ji-an frets nervously, running through a list in her head about what to ask. “Blood type, genetic diseases, allergies…” It looks like she won’t be able to ask any of them because Eun-sung calls that he’s on his way to visit. Way to give a girl no notice. Do you think you’re best buds now that you’re not to be married?
Tae-kang runs into Eun-sung after he’s hurriedly ushered out the door. His imagination takes over as he fantasizes the two engage in a tango that ends up with their faces inches from one another. Then he fumes when the lights in her apartments flicker out.
Unlike his fantasy, Eun-sung is busy presenting his gifts: a star projection system and a relaxing sound machine to help her sleep. Ji-an mutters that he must think he’s her Daddy Long Legs and Eun-sung says he fits the description.
Looking at the projected night sky on her ceiling, Ji-an recalls when she used to fall asleep on her father’s lap as a child and her mother used to shoo away the mosquitoes. Those simple and happy memories bring her emotions to the forefront and Ji-an dismisses them as her hormones acting up.
Eun-sung listens to all of this in silence. They’re interrupted by Tae-kang at the door who angrily stuffs a business card in Ji-an and instructs her to order jokbal herself in the future before storming out. In his car, Eun-sung ponders over the clues about Tae-kang and Ji-an.
Outside, Tae-kang convinces himself repeatedly that he did the right thing. Yet his strained expression betray his words that he’s finally free of Medusa, guzzling down a bottle of soju to ease his suffering.
Ji-an stares at the projected sky and her memories trickle back to the same picture she described earlier. As she falls asleep peacefully, the adult Ji-an replaces the child Ji-an as Dad watches over as she sleeps and Mom shoos away the mosquitoes.
The phones are ringing off the hook at the office, the company all abuzz with the rumors that famous designer Jake Han is visiting the company. Then Tae-kang drops in with the faux pas, “Who’s Jake Han?”
Which makes our introduction to his character absolutely hilarious as Tae-kang mistakenly mops his shoes. Jake shrills, “Oh my shoes!” If that weren’t funny enough, Tae-kang taps on his shoulder to move so he can continue cleaning. HAHAHA.
Ji-an walks in to see her staff fawn all over the huffy designer. She’s displeased to hear that he’ll be the supervisor in their next project.
Cut to Bong-soo giving Tae-kang the lowdown on Jake’s impressive resume, and even referred to as the “second Manolo Blahnik.” He’s a friend of Na-ri and Bong-soo hypothesizes that he’s here to win the stockholders’ favor for Na-ri as the next CEO.
Tae-kang curses at his unfortunate luck, recalling their first meeting. He scrubs Jake’s mopped shoes harder.
Na-ri apologizes that she didn’t inform Ji-an of Jake’s arrival sooner. She gets that familiar twinge of annoyance when Ji-an is completely unfazed, saying that she likes surprise gifts.
Continuing to press her, Na-ri says that there’s no need to act like she’s not scared but Ji-an fires back that Na-ri knows that there’s no way Ji-an can fake that.
Dripping with sarcasm, she considers it an honor to work with the famous Jake Han. She recognizes that Na-ri’s ability to pull in star power is a mark of Na-ri’s capability to run the company. And then Ji-an gives her a big thumbs up.
Interesting then that Jake mentions that Ji-an used to be Na-ri’s role model. She used to make scrapbooks of Ji-an’s autobiography – what happened to the ultimate fangirl? He muses aloud, “What could make yesterday’s idol today’s rival?”
Na-ri tells him that he’s got it all wrong – Ji-an isn’t even at her level to be considered a rival. It’s true since Ji-an has years of experience ahead of you.
Tae-kang comes knocking with Jake’s shined shoes in hand. However, just when he’s about to leave does he hear behind him, “Hey rag.”
He looks back and sees Jake leisurely kick off his slippers, hinting that Tae-kang can’t just leave. Oh ugh, is there someone to blow your nose for you too? When Tae-kang hesitates, he repeats the command in English.
Na-ri tells Jake to stop kidding around but Tae-kang kneels to put the shoes on for him. Once he leaves, Na-ri ineffectively fires in English, “You suck.”
Uh, do you think that really made a dent in Jake’s thick-skinned armor? At least now I know that your PG-rated curses apply to both Korean and English.
Looks like Dad hunted down the real estate con after all. He’s left the man pretty badly beaten (which is oddly satisfying) and both men are in cuffs for their actions. Choong-baek hurries to call Bong-soo to find out Tae-kang’s whereabouts…
Tae-kang is busy dancing to 2PM’s “Heartbeat” at a noraebang (karaoke) to his coworkers.
Hehe and he points to Ji-an whenever the lyrics are, “Listen to my heartbeat/It’s beating for you.”
Ji-an turns down a drink from Jake, a response that doesn’t go unnoticed by Na-ri. Arguing that they’re here to welcome Jake, he then pours out the biggest shot of whiskey ever. “I’ll pour as much as I’m glad to meet you. So you can drink as much you’re happy to welcome me.”
Na-ri continues to egg Ji-an on that her words of praise about Jake don’t match her actions – does Ji-an’s age concern her? She continues that refusing a drink is disrespectful to their honored guest and Ji-an counters, “Isn’t this more disrespectful?”
But Na-ri insists that it’s the Korean way to accept and Ji-an raises her glass, contemplating her next move… when Tae-kang swoops in and down the entire contents of the glass in one shot. Dayum.
He proclaims himself as Ji-an’s Black Knight (a man who steps in to drink for the woman) and then continues to drink shot after shot. Soon he’s completely plastered, doubled over at the table. In his drunken stupor, he demands that Jake pour another glass for “the rag.” Oof.
This is how Bong-soo finds him, pulling him out of the room and roaring that his father is in trouble. He has trouble trying to find a cab when Ji-an pulls up, offering to give them a ride. Bong-soo: “If you go for a bit… to Incheon.”
Ji-an balks and snipes, “Get out.” HA.
Thankfully Medusa has a heart because they arrive at the police station. Ji-an overhears Choong-baek explains that Dad clubbed the guy who scammed them out of Tae-kang’s money and how Tae-kang sold their house to get Dad out of prison.
The mention that Dad made and sold knockoffs that led to his imprisonment leads Ji-an to recall when Tae-kang mentioned his father who worked in the industry.
Suddenly, Tae-kang bolts up and drunkenly barks to see Ji-an, “I’ve got something to say to her! Where is she?!”
Ji-an calmly walks up to him and Tae-kang launches in a drunken rant, “How dare you treat me like a free snack? You toyed with me? You stepped on my sincerity! I even got you a ring…”
He can’t wrap his head around why he keeps getting hit and scolded and wonders if it was because of that night. It may have meant nothing to her, but it meant something to him. Pointing to his chest, he says, “It’s stuck right in here!”
Shouting now, he roars, “Because! It was my first time. You were the first woman I–” And Ji-an places a hand to his mouth to shut him up.
Overall, I’m still invested in this show because it intrigues me how the little things of pregnancy and motherhood are beginning to change Ji-an’s heart. Things like she’s curious of the future, that she imagines possible motherhood and listening to the baby’s heartbeat are slowly melting that Medusa-like heart. I’ll say that it was a little corny to have Ji-an think the heartbeat beat like, “gudoo/gudoo” but it was Kim Sun-ah’s flash of realization in her eyes that sold it to me.
Now that Ji-an has made the decision to continue the pregnancy, we can see that the decision is faced with its own obstacles that differ from her expectations. For instance, we have the case with her parents’ reactions. It shocked me that Dad wanted her to go through with the abortion, putting their current and future relationship on the line. It screamed unfair and harsh and I chalked up another “Dad sucks” tally. But in Dad’s eyes, a child out of wedlock can bring shame onto the family and the individual, and it’s possible that he feels this is the best solution for everyone to save face.
Moreover, Korea is a shame culture where guilt trips aren’t necessarily always spoken as an attack but in order to ‘enlighten’ their children about morality. It’s a difficult boundary to tease apart and it doesn’t make the words any less hurtful. So Ji-an is split between her value to be filial to her parents while making the best conscious decision for herself and the growing life inside of her.
There are the added elements that both Mom and Dad are rough and poorly written characters and their reactions swing between both extremes. I feel like I have to dig pretty deep to find any empathy for her parents even after the happier memory of them keeping the mosquitoes at bay so that they don’t bite Ji-an. The emotional scarring for both parties run deep and at this point, neither seems at a place to fully understand the other, and perhaps they never will.
I’m pretty convinced after watching this episode that Eun-sung has serious boundary issues. Who invites his ex-pregnant-betrothed-to-be to receive prenatal care to his own hospital? And then administers the ultrasound himself? Then you just “drop by” with gifts whenever you want after you publicly call off your marriage to both sides of the family? Do you even understand what Daddy Long Legs means? You see how many questions I’ve got going here? You can keep saying that you can keep your emotions under wraps but we can all see that you can’t do that.
How am I supposed to keep liking you if you don’t know where you stand? Answer me that, Doc.