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Trot Lovers: Episode 14

The parents get some major focus this episode, as Dad (finally!) reappears and we begin to unravel what really happened to his wife — and who might be responsible. Note: It might not be who you think. Soo-in begins to realize that her mother’s schemes may not be foolproof, and tries to take her fate into her own hands. Too bad it’s unclear whether that’s a step forward or back.

EPISODE 14 RECAP

After the emotional back-hug, Chun-hee tearfully reprimands Joon-hyun for hiding the fact he no longer has amnesia. He fights back his own manly tears as he says that as much as he really wants to hug her, there’s still something he still has to do. He can’t tell her what it is, but he promises he’ll come back to her soon.

Placing his hands on her cheeks, he asks if she trusts him. Still sniffling through her tears, she nods, and he asks her to keep his returned memory a secret. Then she takes his face her hands, too. Aw.

Soo-in finds Chun-hee in the hallway (who’s still reeling at the discovery the Joon-hyun is “back,” aw) and calls her out to the stairwell for a private tête-à-tête. She blames Chun-hee for ruining the engagement party, and then threateningly flaunts the medallion necklace in her face, saying that Joon-hyun gave it to her as an engagement present. She shouts that Joon-hyun loves her, not Chun-hee, so Chun-hee shouldn’t even think about coming between them.

But Chun-hee isn’t putting up with Soo-in’s nonsense, and asks why Soo-in looks so nervous, instead of looking like a woman in love. After Soo-in watches Chun-hee walk away, she screams out her frustration and it looks like she’s about to throw her purse down the stairs after Chun-hee, but instead she trips over her own feet and face-plants on the landing, giving herself a nosebleed. What delightful foreshadowing, since Soo-in’s downfall will surely be of her own making.

As she practices the piano in her studio, Chun-hee notes in her calendar that tomorrow a special day. Joon-hyun stops by to marvel at how well she’s improved in her piano skill, and she asks him to come over for dinner tomorrow night.

Meanwhile, Geon-woo holds a staff meeting to discuss the future of the “Choi Chun-Hee Second Generation” talent search. To no one’s surprise, Director Wang and Yang Joo-hee want to shelve the project since Chun-hee’s scandals have destroyed her public image. Geon-woo protests, but Yang Joo-hee points out that image is everything in the entertainment industry. Is Geon-woo’s personal attachment getting in the way of doing business?

Director Wang proposes using Chun-hee to recording the guiding track for Yoo-mi (which is generally a job that any studio musician can do, and usually isn’t a task for a popular artist). Geon-woo bristles at the idea of Chun-hee being demoted to such a position, but she’s already agreed.

Yoo-mi finds Chun-hee in the studio preparing to record the guide track, and asks her how she could do that for her. But Chun-hee reminds Yoo-mi that Chun-hee had help of her own to get this far, and it’s because of Chun-hee that Yoo-mi is at Shine Star at all — so of course she wants to help out. The two women sing the trot-duo Tutti’s “Clap, Clap, Clap” and Geon-woo, who’d been walking by, stops in the doorway of the studio to thoughtfully watch them.

Later at home, Chun-hee is busy making seaweed soup and other deliciousness because it’s Joon-hyun’s birthday. Byul is excited to know that she no longer has to keep Joon-hyun’s secret from her big sister, and that they can become one big happy family again. Or maybe that’s just me projecting, because I’m just as thrilled as Byul to know that he’s coming over for dinner.

Except Chun-hee gets a call from Director Wang who orders her to perform at an event elsewhere. When she tries to explain she has another commitment, he says she’s being unprofessional.

Joon-hyun thinks he’s dropping his mother off for an appointment, but she convinces him to come inside and say hello to all the guests gathered for his surprise birthday party. Mom marvels at Soo-in’s thoughtfulness in throwing such an elaborate party, and while she coos over her future daughter-in-law, Joon-hyun slips out to try and contact Chun-hee.

Soo-in takes this opportunity to link her arm with her future mother-in-law, saying there’s another woman trying to come between the supposed happy couple. That person, according to Soo-in and her “oh poor me” pout, is Chun-hee — who just so happens to have arrived at the party, surprised when she and Joon-hyun come face-to-face as they are apologizing over the phone for having to cancel their dinner plans.

When Mom sees the two of them together, she marches up to Chun-hee and throws a glass of wine in her face, loudly accusing her of trying to steal another woman’s man. Joon-hyun practically has to drag his mother away as she continues to threaten Chun-hee, who just stands there and quietly takes the abuse.

Mom doesn’t understand why what she did was wrong, because embarrassing Chun-hee will keep her from pursuing Joon-hyun. She assumes her son is naive to the devious ways of women, and reprimands him for making Soo-in worry. This only clues him in as to who is really behind her actions.

After Chun-hee does her best to clean up the wine Joon-hyun’s mother spilled on her, steeling herself to do her professional duty and sing the song she was hired to perform. But as she steps up to the microphone, Soo-in also takes the stage to inform everyone that this isn’t just Joon-hyun’s birthday party, it’s also their engagement party.

Joon-hyun is still committed to keeping secret the fact he has his memory back until he can get evidence that Soo-in and her mother were responsible for the accident in the first place, so he unwillingly plays along, thanking everyone for coming. But the glances he exchanges with Chun-hee let her know how distressed he is by the whole situation.

In a move that is reminiscent of when he saved her in the nightclub back in the second episode, Geon-woo leaps up to beg her to not sing and just leave with him. But she declines his offer, citing her professionalism, and sings a popular wedding ballad, Lee Jae-hoon’s “I Love You” (and Shin Bora made a cover of it a few years ago, just to keep the connections alive).

As she performs, Joon-hyun’s mother is struck by Chun-hee’s stage presence, saying it reminds her of someone: Oh Sung-joo. Which makes Soo-in’s mother nervously gulp down some wine, because this show has taught us that drinking red wine (or throwing it at a television or in someone’s face) is a symbol of villainy.

Afterwards, Chun-hee tries makes a quiet exit, but Soo-in is determined to continue to gloat that she’s marrying Joon-hyun. When Chun-hee dismisses her with a pitying remark and calmly walks away, Soo-in shrieks in a rage and shoves her into the hotel pool — and ends up falling into the pool, too.

The two women flounder and flail in the water, attracting the attention of the party guests who just stand and gape until Geon-woo and Joon-hyun arrive to dive in after the women. Both men swim directly to Chun-hee, but Geon-woo is just a little slower than Joon-hyun, and ends up being forced to save Soo-in.

Chun-hee reassures Joon-hyun that she’s all right, and urges him to return to Soo-in. But a little too late: The shame of not being saved by her fiancé infuriates Soo-in, and as she’s confronting him on his actions, she suddenly starts to panic that perhaps his memory has returned. But he keeps up the lie and instead tells her that he just realized today he likes Chun-hee, and needs some time to figure out his feelings.

Geon-woo chases after Chun-hee, frustrated that she ignored his counsel to leave earlier. He angrily asks her why she never listens to him, instead only choosing to do what she wants which only seems to hurt her — and him. But she just apologizes and walks away.

He takes his heartbroken self to his father, where over a few beers (that they’re using straws to drink with, hee), President Jo warns his son that Yang Joo-hee is a dangerous woman. A warning that’s about fourteen episodes too late, I’d say, but Geon-woo’s fully aware of what she’s like. Which is a good thing, too, because she’s busy plotting ways to use Joon-hyun’s affection for Chun-hee against him, taking down two birds with one stone.

Byul and Chun-hee are ready to clean up the birthday decorations they made for Joon-hyun, assuming he won’t be coming over for his homemade birthday dinner (and Byul sagely points out that dating a “top star” is never easy), but he surprises them. The three of them enjoy a simple yet happy birthday celebration, the best present being Byul’s performance as his super star alter ego as she sings the song he taught her to play on the ukelele.

When Joon-hyun returns to his apartment, he finds a lollipop and a note from Chun-hee, where she calls him “Pretty Man” and gives cheerful encouragement for the future of their relationship. Later, after Byul is asleep and Chun-hee is focused on listening to Yoo-mi’s vocal tracks, she receives a text from him, telling her to come out to the living room.

Which, thanks to some serious decoration ninja skills, has been totally transformed into a romantic setting, with candles and strings of fairy lights. Chun-hee discovers notes hanging from the ceiling, that tell of Joon-hyun’s version of “The Little Mermaid.” According to him, the mermaid was the only one for the prince, even if he was a jerk who got engaged to the other princess in order to protect the mermaid. For hurting the mermaid’s heart, the prince is sorry, but is thankful to the mermaid, whom he loves.

After she finishes reading his story, he steps out to wrap her in a hug, apologizing to her in person, and then murmuring, “I love you.”

The next morning, Geon-woo tries to be cool (but not totally self-sacrificing, since he says he’s not going to stand aside) by filling Joon-hyun in on the secret that he and Chun-hee were dating before he lost his memory. But when Joon-hyun just chuckles knowingly, Geon-woo gets adorably flustered in his embarrassed annoyance that Joon-hyun hid the fact his memory returned. However, Joon-hyun has a secret of his own to share.

We don’t get to hear what it is, but presumably it’s about Soo-in, because as they sit at a cafe (with no sexual tension between them whatsoever, it’s so awkward), Joon-hyun gives her one last chance to tell him what really happened. After all, he told her how he felt about Chun-hee because he believes there should be no secrets between lovers. But Soo-in is sticking to her story.

As Joon-hyun and Chun-hee play around at Shine Star (hopping around on the giant keyboard à la Tom Hanks in Big), he takes a moment to confess that him getting hurt wasn’t an accident, and that it wasn’t him the perpetrators were after, but her. He hid his memory to protect her, and even if it gets hard for her, to continue to trust him for a little longer.

Someone’s tipped off an television investigation news crew about the incident, as the reporter and cameramen swarm around a surprised Soo-in, asking about Joon-hyun’s accident. Soo-in repeats she doesn’t know and escapes them to run to Mom, worried about what the reporters will find out if they continue their investigation. Yang Joo-hee promises to stop the broadcast. Of course she does.

Joon-hyun and Chun-hee are being cute as they tinker at the in piano her practice room, but the sudden appearance of Yoo-mi makes them pretend they’re weren’t giddily flirting with each other, nope, not at all. Yoo-mi hands over a gift as a thank-you from her father, and asks if Chun-hee’s father has returned yet. He hasn’t, but Chun-hee has faith that he will, especially since her mother’s death anniversary is soon.

As Byul and Chun-hee set out the memorial meal for their mother, Joon-hyun escorts their father to his house, promising to keep his cancer a secret from his family. Through tears, Byul and Chun-hee embrace their father, so happy he’s returned. Joon-hyun listens to the sobs of joy coming from their house, and smiles to himself before walking away, leaving the little family to enjoy their reunion.

Later, as Byul sleeps holding her father’s hand, Dad thanks Chun-hee for growing up to be a fine adult and taking good care of Byul. He also thanks her for forgiving him for being away for so long, wondering why he didn’t listen to “that friend’s” advice to return sooner. She’s surprised to find out that Joon-hyun was the one who found her father and convinced him to return home, but smiles when she learns that Joon-hyun asked her father to stay beside them and protect them when he couldn’t.

The next day, Chun-hee happily waits for Joon-hyun, who is back to his egotistic ways as he assumes she’s there to thank him for finding her father (and his nervous way he slips in a slightly mumbled “and that’s why I love you” as one of the phrases he expects to hear from her is ridiculously cute). But Chun-hee doesn’t take his bait, and says that he was actually going to forgive him for not remembering her, but teasingly says he’s a jerk, instead. Aw, I’ve missed their bickering.

Chun-hee’s father is Shine Star to see Yang Joo-hee, She’s surprised to see him, but he’s there to ask for a favor: He wants to meet with President Jo, who might know where someone named Hwa-soon is, because he needs to find out exactly what happened with his wife’s accident.

Hwa-soon is Joon-hyun’s mother, who calls Yang Joo-hee just then to let her know she’s on her way up to the office. Yagn Joo-hee tries to hide her panic as she tells Dad that President Jo is no longer with the company.

She promises to find out about Hwa-soon as she tries to get him to leave the building as quickly as possible, nearly having a heart attack when she thought the two might meet in the elevator. After she literally shoves him into a taxi to send him away, she hurries back to her office, where Hwa-soon is waiting for her.

She mentions “Myung-shik Oppa” and reminisces that if it weren’t for that accident, then maybe — but Yang Hoo-jee angrily cuts her off.

Even so, Dad still wants to see his daughter and he tells the taxi to turn around to go back to Shine Star. As he’s waiting to cross the street, he sees Hwa-soon attempting to hail a taxi and hurries after her. But he’s a split-second too late and Hwa-soon’s gone.

Outside the house, Joon-hyun sits with Dad as he swallows his cancer pills. He’s concerned that Chun-hee’s father hasn’t set a surgery date yet, but Dad is more focused on figuring out exactly what happened to his wife in that accident. He’s determined to track down the culprit, but neither of them are aware that the person he’s looking for is Joon-hyun’s mother.

Pil-nyeo arrives at Tae-song’s officetel, but he isn’t there. She gets a little giggly over some lustful thoughts when she sees his bed, but is quickly distracted when he appears in a shiny gold sequined jacket and red rose between his teeth.

He gives her the rose and serenades her with Tae Jin-ah’s “Woman Who Doesn’t Even Look In The Mirror.” Pil-nyeo is now happily and willingly seduced by this singing foreplay, which gives a new definition to the concept of “Trot Lovers” (if you know what I mean).

Soo-in discovers Joon-hyun’s accident is climbing the real-time internet search charts, and turns on the television to see him asking for anyone who knows anything about the stage accident to come forward and report it.

Meanwhile, Yang Joo-hee has her own worries as Chun-hee’s dad calls her, convinced he saw Hwa-soon at Shine Star. She tries to juggle both crises, but Soo-in has reached her breaking point. No longer is she trusting her mother to clean up after her — she’s taking care of her own business from now on.

Yang Joo-hee meets with Chun-hee’s father, and is pretty darn convincing when she says that his wife’s accident was covered up by President Jo for purely business reasons. She tries to bribe him off “like last time,” pretending it’s out of concern for his family. But he refuses, knowing how important it is for Chun-hee to keep performing.

It can’t be helped, she says — he should know that Chun-hee is the one who was responsible for Joon-hyun’s accident. Dad doesn’t believe her at first, but she saw the CCTV (before she destroyed it out of concern for one of Shine Star’s artists; which is true enough), and it was definitely Chun-hee (which is not so true). But if he doesn’t believe her, she can produce it again. I want to shout at him to call her bluff, but Yang Joo-hee made enough of an impression that he returns home, looking conflicted as he watches his daughter cheerfully set out his blankets.

Soo-in is the noisiest thief ever as she rifles through her mother’s office. Growing more and more frantic as she ignores calls from the investigative news reporter, she finally finds Joon-hyun’s phone hidden away in the desk.

She sees the photos of Joon-hyun and Chun-hee’s MV-making date, and sends a message to Chun-hee from his phone, asking if she remembers where they went that day.

Chun-hee, assuming Joon-hyun is the one who sent her the message, answers of course she remembers. Which means Chun-hee knows that Joon-hyun’s memory has returned. Soo-in doesn’t have much time to fret about the fact they’ve pretending Joon-hyun still has amnesia, because she’s too busy freaking out about meeting the mysterious person who tipped off the reporters.

As she paces on the stage where the incident occurred, Joon-hyun calls out, “Ah, so you’ve come!” Soo-in’s eyes get even wider, and he strides forward to calmly yank off the medallion necklace, saying that it doesn’t belong to her.

COMMENTS

Finally! I know we’ve all been impatient for Soo-in (and especially her mother) to get their comeuppance, but I’m just glad this means there won’t even be pretense of amnesia next week. Everyone knows, and soon everyone will know exactly what happened that day — and, presumably, the day of Chun-hee’s mother’s accident.

Yet, as much as I’m glad we’ll finally wipe the smirk off Soo-in and her mother’s faces for hopefully good, I can’t help but feel a little sad. I had hopes that Soo-in wouldn’t be relegated to such a comedic level of villainy, and even now I still have a faint lingering hope — buoyed primarily by the fact she finally realized that her mother’s cockamamie schemes only make things worse.

Not that Soo-in is any more successful herself, with her absurd “look what I have you don’t, neener neener” posturing about her engagement with Joon-hyun. That just made me mad, especially once she made it clear that she was only going through with it to save her skin and make Chun-hee sad. No wonder Chun-hee pitied her.

I’m glad that we’re also getting around to what really happened with Chun-hee’s mother, although I may have rolled my eyes a bit when the show added Joon-hyun’s mother as part of the mix. Because of course she just can’t be an annoyingly daft mother who’s more interested in status than anything else — she has to be the one to somehow be responsible for the death of Chun-hee’s mother.

This is mostly annoying because, as clichéd as it may be, it could have been a much more believable way to split apart our lead couple than amnesia. With only two episodes left, I’m not totally sure how we’re going to address the fact that Joon-hyun is related to her mother’s accident, but it definitely needs to be addressed. Of course, considering how many times Chun-hee has forgiven him for all sorts of behaviors (and just based on how awesome she is in general), I doubt she will hold him personally responsible for any actions (however accidental) that his mother took.

But it still has to be hard to look into the face of the man you love and realize he’s the child of someone you consider to have taken your mother away from you. Of course, considering how easily swayed Hwa-soon is, I very much doubt her role was intentional, and it must be Soo-in’s mother who is likely to blame for whatever happened. But I would still like to see that drama played out, and it would have at least made more sense than amnesia.

As much as I’m still enjoying the show — because there are moments of fun, and you can’t say it isn’t boring — I feel like I’m grieving the loss of what could have been. It’s not so much that the writers seem hellbent on throwing every drama cliché into the script that they can (if we get a birth secret next week, I think they win a prize for having all the tropes!). It’s not that I’m sad the characters become more and more uneven with each episode (I live for those weird moments with Geon-woo, to remind me why his off-kilter character was originally so charming, before he slowly became the brooding second lead).

Honestly, the thing that grieves me the most is the music. Or, rather, lack of it.

Whenever I look up the songs Chun-hee sings, I have the original play in the background. The original style is often slightly (or quite) different than the version Chun-hee performs — yes, it’s still trot, but there’s a more modern twist. I had innocently gone into this show thinking there’d actually be an emphasis on the art of trot music and the technique it requires. I was expecting a crash course on the history and cultural significance of trot, wrapped in a sweet and quirky rom-com that would be filled with cameos of famous trot singers and lots more ahjummas and ahjussis rocking out to trot.

I guess I just really wanted to feel that this show loved trot more than melodrama (especially since trot music itself is filled with such beautiful heartache and joy!). The only time I believe this show does, indeed, love trot is when Eun-ji is singing. Perhaps that’s why I always seem to end up with a bajillion screen caps when she’s singing, because that’s still, to me, the heart of the show — Chun-hee’s love for her family and the music that connects her so deeply to her mother.

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This series was disappointing in so many ways. It could have been an epic musical journey, but instead turned into yet another cliché-ridden "meh" show.

It is full of characters that nobody cares about, and characters (like the dad) that makes you wonder why they bothered even having that character in the plot. The music has been minimal, which I find really sad because it could have been an interesting journey on the history of Trot and the music industry in Korea.

Too bad that what we ended up with was plastic villains and a plotline that could have been pulled out of the Random Cliché Generator computer program.

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This was actually one of my favorite series when it started (actually preferred it more to King of High School and Marriage without Dating), loved the first four episodes and then went downhill from there. Then when I thought things can't get any worse, the amnesia storyline came and this show hit rock bottom.

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Yeah, I stopped watching it at about the same time you say it went downhill. All those clichés may not have mattered at all, if the drama had music as its main component.

The recap today sums it up perfectly: "I had innocently gone into this show thinking there’d actually be an emphasis on the art of trot music and the technique it requires. I was expecting a crash course on the history and cultural significance of trot, wrapped in a sweet and quirky rom-com that would be filled with cameos of famous trot singers and lots more ahjummas and ahjussis rocking out to trot."

So, the trot music is merely a window dressing for what is a pure melo. Still, I had fun while it lasted. I really like the male lead - he shines through the ridiculous lines and situations the drama forces on him with his brain intact.

Speaking of window dressing, I am pretty sure by now that, in another drama now playing on TV, mental illnesses are the flavor of the month as trot music was in this one.

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It's pretty clear that Joon Hyun's mother is *not* responsible for the accident - the fact that she brings it up with such ease and without any sense of guilt (as opposed to Joo Hee, who has a minor heart attack every time Sung Joo's name is mentioned) proves that. I've no doubt Joo Hee will try to make it seem as though she's the guilty party, but I'm 100% convinced she isn't.

presumably it’s about Soo-in, because as they sit at a cafe (with no sexual tension between them whatsoever, it’s so awkward)

Why would there be sexual tension between them? Are you saying there was before but there isn't now? *confused*

Thanks for the recap!

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Agree! Soo-in's mom must be responsible for Chun-hee's mom's death and seemingly blaming Joon-hyun's mom... at least to others. The same way she's twisting the story to make it like Chun-hee's to blame while Soo-in is supposed to be the victim.

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Thanks for the recap Odilettante!

Out of all the rom-coms being recapped right now, it seems like Trot Lovers has the weakest OST of the bunch which I find really weird since their drama is all about music. I can't say I'll miss this show but it was a nice watch if you want to pass the time. I think the writer should just go for broke and throw in the birth secret, in for a penny in for a pound I'd say. hehe

Eun Ji is 2 for 2 so far when it comes to having a dad with cancer when she is the female lead. Now I'm gonna be looking out for that in her next project. lol Keep the streak alive!

Out of the 3 villains in this show, I really hate Director Wang. I mean, I can sorta understand Soo-In and her mom's motivations for doing the things they did but Director Wang's only reason (that I know of) is that he did not care for Trot music. What a stupid villain! lol If I was him, as soon as I saw that CCTV tape, I would have told mom "Um, you bitches are crazy. I won't be an accessory to attempted murder."

Not really caring too much about what happened to the mother and who was to blame. I just want to see an adequate amount of comeuppance for the villains and a happy ending for everyone else.

A bit off topic.. did anyone else freak out when they saw that the actress playing the mom in Surplus Princess was the crazy lady in You're all Surrounded? I was.. lol

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Going through the re-caps mainly to locate the musical scenes, which I miss skipping through on Dramafever because they NEVER LET EUNJI FINISH A SONG!

It's like they wanted to make a drama about trot music but hired a director who considers the musical numbers a waste of screen time.

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Ahaha! That pool scene made me laugh -- that water was shallow enough to walk in! As evidenced by the fact that the boys WALKED the girls out of the pool.

On the plus side, CH's dad was not hit by the Truck of Doom when he was running after JH's mom in the street. That was pretty surprising.

Thanks for the recap, odilettante. Hopefully next week will be full of the music and cuteness that you and LollyPip and the rest of us were enjoying at the beginning of the drama.

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Well... every 'drowning' scene in a KDrama ever happens in water you could stand in^^ At least the one's I've seen so far xD BUT in High School Love on (ep 3 I think) someone finally pointed out why the drowning person made such a ruckus when the water was shallow enough to stand in. It made me laugh out loud tbh^^

Oh I'm still waiting for the truck of doom (preferably for Soo In or her mom - I know it's mean but they deserve it -.-) ^^ Besides a birth secret it's the only trope we haven't had so far :P

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I looked at the new A-Pink documentary and it was instructive just to see Eun Ji's charisma and maturity stand out from the crowd. After seeing her in the drama, you can catch how she takes charge of every scene in front of the docu-camera. Not just that she is is the only group member to volunteer for the bunji jump, she doesn't react to most situations be squealing and whimpering.

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What disappoints me the most about this show is not that the writer resorted to using amnesia, but that he/she used it so unoriginally (is that even a word). The amnesia thing could have been funny, like oh, haha, he forgot practically everything that happened in the past few months; instead, it was boring and too melodramatic for a show that calls itself a rom-com. Honestly, they could have done basically anything else with the amnesia thing and I would have been much more satisfied.

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Lamenting the lost potential of this drama...

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Is it possible that the use of cliched tropes is part of a deliberate effort to draw parallels between trot and Kdramas?

Other choices made in the production work as touchstones, too - the story pacing, the editing style, the tone, the choice to center the romance around uplift and bondedness... Maybe it's not meant to be a drama about trot music (hence the scarcity of it) as much as it is trot-styled and full of the spirit of trot.

I don't know, I might be way off base. It just occurred to me once when I heard the Hot Pepper song that the whole drama is kind of like that song, even down to identifiable elements in the production.

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No, I thought too that they were making it overly (and unnecessarily...) dramatic to relate to the music, to paint a story of enduring and overcoming hardships. To me it was like a musical with less music.

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I'm still watching Trot Lovers and will see it through its conclusion...but, for some time now, only because I love the scenes with Chun-hee, Joon-hyun, and Byul.

The chemistry between Chun-hee and Joon-hyun is so palpable, thanks to Jung Eun-ji and Ji Hyun-woo's mutual ability to convey love and longing with just their expressive eyes. Ji Hyun-woo did the same thing so convincingly in 'Queen In-hyun's Man'. Of course, it didn't hurt that he and Yoo Inna were genuinely into each other.

It has been disappointing that they've kept trot music to a minimum(in this trot music drama) and, in particular, Jung Eun-ji's singing scenes...because her singing scenes have been the true highlights in this show. She is simply one of the most gifted young Korean singers that I've had the pleasure of listening to, and her singing scenes are a joy to behold. Add to that the fact that she has real acting skills and is also rather easy on the eyes, and the result is a mesmerizing presence on screen that's hard to take your eyes(and ears) away from.

It's unfortunate that the powers-that-be behind this drama didn't have enough faith or confidence that a well done rom-com about trot music and the love story between its leads would have enough appeal to make for a commercially successful drama. As we have all suspected, that's why they threw in all that other ridiculous stuff...and made caricatures of Soo-in, her mom, Director Wang, and even Chun-hee's dad.

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I'm so glad you said this -- spot-on in my book. These leads, and Byul, are so appealing that I can both lament the drama's missteps and still enjoy every scene they are in. I could do without every parent in this drama ... so unnecessary. Director Wang supplies more than enough mindless evil.

I wish there could be a Trot Lover do-over in which the personal drama came from professional struggles/differences.

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Thanks, AJ. I have a feeling that many of us, here, may be sharing similar sentiments about the leads and Byul, this drama in general, and how it's developed.

I agree with your Trot Lovers do-over wish. Could've, would've, should've...right? ;)

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I am waiting for some serious makeout scenes and some bed scenes. Please.... With a cherry on top.... Give us the perv...

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Disappointed with the course of this drama. I had high expectations for this show because of Eunji and the music/romcom genre. But like odilettante said: this show could've been so much more.

Though I have to say that this episode was an improvement from the past episodes. Out of the amnesia episodes, this was the best. Joon-hyun can finally use it to his advantage to take down Soo-in and her mother. But this episode was also the return of the cute moments between Joon-hyun and Chun-hee. :3 And Byul, of course!

But the highlight of the episode was definitely Chun-hee's singing. I replayed her and Yoo-mi's duet so many times. Maybe they can sing another duet later on.

I just really wished they used Eunji's singing in another way. I feel like some of the songs she sings are just fillers to keep us entertained. I wished they'd focus more on the genre trot or even, her rise in the music industry better. Things were so speedy quick on the music part and yet they dwell so much on the drama between Soo-in and Chun-hee.

With two episodes left, I sincerely hope the writers properly address the issue with Chun-hee's mother. If Joon-hyun's mother did cause her death (which seems very unlikely to me), I hope they don't gloss over the part where Chun-hee finds out about that. No matter if it was an accident or how much she loves Joon-hyun, Chun-hee would definitely not be all right after finding that out. I just hope this storyline will end on a realistic note.

I also hope that Soo-in gets a proper ending. She was already sly in the beginning but throughout the series, she brought herself to new lows. Though she was mostly influenced by her mother, her situation right now is a result of her own actions. She'll probably be scandal-ridden by the end but I hope she rises again without the help of her mother--only by her willpower and determination using honest means.

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That would be difficult for Soo In. Last I heard, the prison sentence for attempted murder is quite long.

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Good point, but anything can happen in Dramaland. :O

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Lets be honest, no one ever really gets the commuppence they deserve in Korean dramas, the worst that will happen is she will end up with the second male lead and live a live of love and happiness...I HATE that about Korean dramas!! the evil bitches never pay, they get rewarded

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This series ... which I will still finish and look forward to finishing ... will be placed right next to "The Prime Minister and I" as a Rom-Com that just forgot what it was supposed to be.

So much potential ... so much promise ... only to be mediocre ...

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I really wanted to be able to like Park Soo In, mostly because I've liked LSY from a previous work. She was presented as an ambitious girl who was successful due to her own talent and hard work as a singer, and any attempt to be manipulative (to woo Gun Woo) failed. She seemed like a girl with integrity, but her character derailed as she grew more insecure.

I also miss the ever mischievous, weird Gun Woo that Shin Sung Rok plays so well.

I was hoping halfway into the show, Tae Song would show up as a dark horse as the next "Chun Hee underdog" and give Chun Hee and Soo In some competition as a singer. And Pil Nyeo would work harder and slowly be a famous star too (because... they did hire Shin Bo Ra for a reason, right?).

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While this may be repeating what Aigoooo said above, I find Director Wang's behavior completely unbelievable. He back-talks the CEO at every turn, even going so far as to essentially cut him off as Geon-woo is trying to get Chun-hee off the stage. Uh, you do realize you're ordering around the Head Honcho, the Big Boss, The Top Cheese there, fella, right? (Of course, the weird thing is, GW lets him with nary a reminder of his proper place)

I didn't see such a sympathetic portrait of Joon-hyun as Chun-hee is suffering indignity after indignity in this episode (or this last episode for that matter). I saw a man whose plan is virtually non-existent, and he just keeps looking sheepish, really. Just before she started singing, I saw a look that wasn't so much, "I'm sorry" but more "I'm sorry, I don't really have a plan. But I mean well." (Much in the same way the Jos seem to be absolutely clueless about what really goes on at their company.)

Finally, there was a scene between Soo-in and her mother in between the pool scenes and the straw-sippers, where Soo-in lays her cards on the table. Soo-in flatly confessed to her mom that she had no romantic interest in Joon-hyun: she just doesn't want Chun-hee to have him. Mom tells her that's great, they can now gin up a break-up scandal and ruin both of them simultaneously. As a viewer, I find this to be a serious cop-out on the part of the writer, since this just seems to undercut all of the boozy fear and frustration that Soo-in privately indulged in until she dropped the set on Joon-hyun, and which was much more an interesting storyline:
"Remember when you used your wizarding powers to wipe out several months of the internet; convinced a politician to happily partake in a scandal (Is his entire constituency made up of sex offenders?); pay off hundreds of people to Not See things; actively worked to short-circuit another artist at the company, whose still-temporary popularity has created a windfall for the company, thereby limiting the company's profit-potential to the point of possibly creating losses? It was out of spite."
"Well, my daughter's spite trumps profit at this company."

And yet, I'll still watch to see how this ends.

Thanks very much for the recap, Odilettante.

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I wonder if they just pulled tropes out of a hat and were like "yup this week the main lead is gonna have amnesia and next week dad will say he has cancer...but not to his kids"

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I am confuse.

DramaFever says there are twenty episodes. Wikipedia says there are 18.

Here it says 16.

Still just reading the recaps. Thank you for running interference for us Odilettante.

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It's probably 16. Rare for dramas to end with 18, unless there's a 2-episode extension. And if it's 20, I have no idea what they would fill the other 4 episodes with..

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"I may have rolled my eyes a bit when the show added Joon-hyun’s mother as part of the mix. Because of course she just can’t be an annoyingly daft mother who’s more interested in status than anything else — she has to be the one to somehow be responsible for the death of Chun-hee’s mother."

Joon-hyun's mother may have been part of the accident but the way Soo-in's mother acts it was definitely caused by her meaning Joon-hyuns mom is just an innocent party if she was involved.

You know it's funny but the first time I saw the ending of this episode I saw Joon-hyun dressed like Kim Boong-do riding his horse charging at Soo-in lopping her head off and taking the necklace back. Is that a bad thing?

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argghhhh, so much potential wasted!!!
Is it just me, or are dramas all recently starting out awesome with great cast but then fading out and becoming mediocre in the middle?
I loved the first few episodes, and what ever happened to Geon woo's stealing habit? I was so curious about his quirkiness and whether he was kelptomanic or just a bit ...ditzy, but it seemed to be dropped? like the writer couldnt think or a way to explain it other then a quirk so just forgot about it.

I'll admit I cringed at the whole amnesia thing. like..why?? Then again FTLY also did the amnesia and illness trope. But c'mon, cancer??? Such a shame. I really loved this show, but its gone downhill. Hope it can have a nice ending.

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I agree with all the criticisms of this Drama, but since it got me to check out REAL trot, I'm OK with that. Plus I like the three singing leads, so I just shut down all rational analytical functions when watching. Otherwise, the flood of clichés and absurdities, like Director Wang's impunity or the useless fop of "Old" President who lets two implacable enemies stay on his board, would bug me too much. Better just to watch for the singing, when it comes.

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I disagree with you about the the old president Geon-woo's dad I think leaving his enemies on the board was a good idea, haven't you ever heard "keep your friends close and enemies closer." If they're on the board he can keep an eye on them and in check which the evidence seems to suggest he did until he turned operations over to his untested son who no one has any faith in, and failed to warn said son about the enemies on the board.

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Ok , its only one episode left and im quite over expecting anything exceptional from this drama. Its cute, light and sometimes annoying. But please tell me i was not alone when i busted out laughing when both guys went ro save Chun Hee leaving Soo In drowning ...Bwahahahahaha i almost busted a gut. Serbes her right in any case. I was hoping JH would keep it together and save " the right girl". It was too hilarious when Geun Woo had to switch routes ...sigh goodtimes. Anyhoo who pushes someone into a pool when u cant swim yourself , sigh kdrama villains sometimes illogical sometimes suicidal .

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Thanks for the recap, odilettante. You cleared up my confusion about JH's appearance on tv/web? talking about the accident.

I especially appreciate your (and others') comments on the disappointing "use" of trot in this series. I too was looking forward to some history, some famous trot singers and songs. Maybe a series on one trot singer or composer would have made more sense for that. Maybe someone will do a Count of Myeongdong-style docu-drama about the genre. I DEFINITELY would watch. (Reminds me of the Colombian series "Escalona" about the beloved vallenato composer.)

Cannot complain, tho. I got to really delight in Jung Eun-ji’s extraordinary voice. Since I don't follow the kpop groups, I didn't know. What a great singer!

I was looking forward to Ji Hyun-Woo's performance and he didn't disappoint, despite the early hi-jinks. But I would recommend My Sweet Seoul or QIM over this one. Thanks again!

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