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Sassy Go Go: Episode 9

Pressure affects people differently, pushing some to succeed and others to fail, and yet others to make decisions they might normally never make. As Yeol and Yeon-doo push Soo-ah to confess her wrongdoing, her behavior becomes more erratic and dangerous, to herself and those around her. It may be too late for repentance and redemption, as she sinks to levels so deep, she may never be able to find her way back.

EPISODE 9 RECAP

When Ha-joon finds Yeon-doo on the dark road, limping and crying, she dives into his arms. He holds her as she sobs in relief, but she suddenly becomes aware of their closeness and backs away. She stammers that the road was rough and scary, and Ha-joon smiles at her nervousness.

Back at the campsite, Yeol roars at Soo-ah — he knows she left Yeon-doo alone in town with no transportation. Soo-ah lies that she thought Yeon-doo told her to go back, so Yeol gets right to the point. She thought Yeon-doo was the one with the video of Soo-ah stealing the USB, didn’t she? He says she’s wrong, and that if Yeon-doo is hurt, she’s dead.

Ha-joon bikes himself and Yeon-doo back towards the campsite, but the road is bumpy and they take a spill. He uses his bandanna to wrap her bleeding knee, though by now Yeon-doo has her fighting spirit back and says she’s fine. Inside of pedaling, Ha-joon lets Yeon-doo sit on the bike while he pushes it, which is the cutest thing ever.

Teacher Yang and Yeol drive around looking for Yeon-doo, and Yang asks what he and Soo-ah were talking about before. Yeol just says he’ll tell him later.

The rest of the kids look for Yeon-doo on foot, so when Instructor Nam finally arrives, the place is in an uproar. The kids all come back, but now they realize that Soo-ah is missing. She’s in the tent, freaking right out about Yeol’s statement that Yeon-doo didn’t send her the video.

Teacher Yang and Yeol come upon Ha-joon pushing Yeon-doo on the bike, and Yeol immediately starts yelling at her. He’s really more worried than angry, and he fusses over her injuries while Ha-joon looks on awkwardly.

They get her back to the campsite safely and all the kids breathe a sigh of relief. Yeon-doo declines to say what happened, promising to tell them when it’s sorted out.

Yeol finds Soo-ah pacing in front of her tent, where he asks her if she knows that they found Yeon-doo. He asks if she’s curious what Yeon-doo might say, but Soo-ah only repeats that she thought Yeon-doo wanted her to leave.

So Yeol invites Soo-ah to come to the campfire and come clean… about the USB, and what happened to Yeon-doo tonight. She continues to insist on her innocence, but Yeol tells her it’s all over.

He and Ha-joon had watched the CCTV video that Ha-joon downloaded from the security room, and seen her taking the USB when Teacher Im dropped it. Yeol visited the security company before her tutor asked them to delete the video, and he’d borrowed Yeon-doo’s sticky notes to bait Soo-ah.

Yeol and Soo-ah hear a voice — it’s Yeon-doo, and she’s heard Yeol’s story. She asks why Soo-ah left her behind, saying that she would have let it slide if Soo-ah had a good reason. But now, she can’t do that, because she knows Soo-ah will never change.

Soo-ah goes all Who do you think you are?, but Yeon-doo is just so done. She asks if Soo-ah even knows why she and Yeol are angry — she framed Yeol for stealing the USB and abandoned Yeon-doo in the middle of nowhere, but what’s worse is that she doesn’t even feel any remorse.

Soo-ah haughtily asks Yeon-doo what she’s going to do about it. Yeon-doo warns her to watch and see… starting tonight she won’t be able to get away with this kind of thing anymore. Soo-ah stammers a bit at that, but her pride won’t let her show her fear, even when Yeon-doo says that soon everyone will know about her, even her mother. Soo-ah fires back to Yeon-doo to do her worst, but she’ll never suffer because of someone like her.

When Soo-ah is gone, Yeol finally speaks, asking if Yeon-doo is okay — that outburst wasn’t like her. Yeon-doo wails that she’s tired of standing by and not doing anything, and she can’t let Soo-ah get away with her behavior anymore. So Yeol smiles and tells her to do what she needs to do. But he warns her not to do something she’ll regret.

Teacher Yang sings by the campfire later that night, but his moody songs bum the kids out. Both Yeol and Yeon-doo watch for Soo-ah to make an appearance, but she’s nervous and it takes her a while to join the group. The kids all crank up the tempo of Yang’s song and start to do their cheerleading routines to them, having a great time, but Soo-ah still looks miserable.

When it’s calmer, Yeol suggests they play the Truth Game, but the kids are reluctant to play in front of their teachers. The teachers get the hint and leave, though Teacher Im is so eager to play, they end up playing their own version in their tent. They argue about which of them has the harder time, and Teacher Im vents about Principal Choi throwing things at him and asking him if she looks fat. He wins, ha.

Back at the campfire, the real Truth Game commences. Ha-joon is asked who his first love is, but he takes punishment (a heart drawn on his cheek, hee) rather than answer. Yeol notices when Yeon-doo gives Ha-joon a thumbs-up and he smiles back shyly, and it seem to make him uncomfortable.

Ha-joon asks Dong-jae what his dream is, which Dong-jae says is to overcome his phobia of being touched. Da-mi asks how that started, and he tells them it was because of Yeon-doo. She was the little girl he pushed off the jungle gym, and it scared him when she was unconscious for three days afterwards (though she softly insists she’s fine now).

Since then, he’s been afraid of getting provoked and hurting someone badly. Hyo-shik sweetly reassures Dong-jae that he can conquer that fear, and nobody will get hurt.

Soo-ah starts to get up to leave, so Yeol quickly barks a question at her: Why did she ditch Yeon-doo? The kids are shocked at this, and start to get angry, but Yeon-doo interrupts to say that it was a communication error. She gives Soo-ah a pointed look, and Yeol smiles — Yeon-doo is back to herself.

He and Yeon-doo walk together later, and he asks if she feels better. She admits that for a while she wasn’t sure what she would do, but she figured that exposing Soo-ah in front of everyone wouldn’t make her feel better. She didn’t want to humiliate her in front of everyone.

Yeol teases that she made him the bad guy, but Yeon-doo knows that he did what he did for her, and that he didn’t enjoy it. That’s why he gave Soo-ah a chance to fess up on her own.

Soo-ah pulls Yeol aside to talk, and asks why he didn’t tell everyone the truth. He asks in turn if she noticed how Yeon-doo protected her, again. He warns Soo-ah that Yeon-doo won’t keep doing that, and Soo-ah begins to cry. Her mother would have killed her if she got second place again. She knows what she did was wrong, but she was desperate.

She asks Yeol for time to reveal everything herself, and to tell her mother and the school the truth. Yeol also wants an apology to Yeon-doo, which Soo-ah agrees to. Yeol is reluctant, but he gives her three days. After he walks away, Soo-ah wipes her tears, and her hard expression comes back — I knew it.

Once Yeol is alone, he thinks of how he saw Ha-joon pushing Yeon-doo on the bike, seeming jealous. Ha-joon also remembers being with Yeon-doo, and grins to himself to think of how she fell into his arms. Yeon-doo herself can’t sleep and goes out for fresh air, and all three of them wander the campsite, lost in their thoughts.

Yeon-doo finds Yeol, and he jokes that she couldn’t sleep for wanting to see him. That’s probably truer than he thinks. He complains that he wanted to spend a lot of time with her while away from the school, but she ended up disappearing.

He admits that he felt responsible, and that when he blew up at her, he was really angry with himself. Yeol says that he wishes he’d been the one to find her, and been able to give her a hug when he did.

Laughing at himself, Yeol says that he doesn’t want to worry about her secretly, or pay attention to her secretly, anymore. He’s tired of beating around the bush. He finally tells her, “I like you,” and she’s so surprised that he has to prompt her for her answer.

Yeon-doo hesitates, and the moment is lost when Ha-joon finds them. He notices the awkward atmosphere, but they brush it off and go for ramyun.

In the morning the whole team gets in some practice, and Instructor Nam tells them that they’re getting good enough that regionals is a real possibility. They realize that Soo-ah isn’t here — she’s in Yeol’s tent, going through his things. She pulls out a tablet, frustrated when it’s locked.

The kids all gather to go home, not eager to return to the dorms. Yeol almost confronts Soo-ah, having noticed that his belongings were disorganized, but in the end he just grins at her.

Back home, Soo-ah reports to her mother and Director Lee about the camping trip. She starts to confess to them how she got number one ranking, and says that Kim Yeol was cleared and came back to school. Mom interrupts to warn Soo-ah not to give up her top ranking again, and Soo-ah is too afraid to say more.

Director Lee tells Soo-ah in private, that it was Yeol who made a copy of the incriminating CCTV footage. Soo-ah correctly guesses that Director Lee knows the truth, but she hasn’t told Soo-ah’s mother. She warns Soo-ah that if the problem gets any bigger, she’ll have to tell her.

Soo-ah tells Director Lee that Yeol is using the video to threaten her into confessing to the school. Director Lee says that that absolutely cannot happen, but Soo-ah says that she has three days — she’ll find that video and destroy it.

Yeol’s dad and Yeon-doo’s mom go out, where he keeps pestering her about marriage. She says she wants to keep dating like this, but he doesn’t, and wants to break up if they aren’t going to get married. He says that she’s made him a better person and father, and suggests that they all eat together when the kids come home soon.

Soo-ah apparently did more than look at Yeol’s tablet, she stole it, and he nearly catches her looking at it in the study room. He’s aware of what she’s doing, and enjoys staring at her and making her nervous.

She starts to leave before the team meeting, claiming to be ill, though Yeon-doo pokes at her a little. She can study until her nose bleeds, but when it’s time for practice she’s never feeling well? She mentions that Soo-ah only has two days, and warns her not to wait too long (while Yeol smirks at Yeon-doo’s ferocity)).

When the teachers arrive, Yeon-doo says pointedly that Soo-ah will be staying for practice after all. They work on lifts and Ha-joon accidentally drops Yeon-doo, but it’s Yeol who rushes to help her up.

After practice, Yeol asks if Yeon-doo was just being hardnosed to get Soo-ah to stay and practice, and she whines that he always knows what she’s thinking. She knows nothing will change, but she’s ready for Soo-ah to stop. Yeol brightly says that they’ll find a way to make her stop, and changes the subject to their relationship.

Oh Yeon-doo, can you really play dumb after he so honestly confessed? Yeol complains about all the skinship she shares with her male teammates, and pouts that she even flirts with Ha-joon. He forbids her to do those things anymore, and says he’s the only guy she can touch, but Yeon-doo just laughs in his face and refuses. Good girl.

She heads inside, giggling to herself at his adorable jealousy, and runs into Soo-ah looking thunderous. She warns Yeon-doo not to say a word until her time is up, but Yeon-doo says that she should be thinking about confessing.

During class, Soo-ah asks to go to the nurse, as she’s not feeling well. Instead she grabs a bag she’s got hidden, and heads to the restroom. Teacher Yang sees a hooded figure in black and recognizes it as Soo-ah, and follows to see what she’s up to.

She enters the boys’ dorm, goes into Yeol’s room, and opens his laptop. She finds his USB copy of the video, but Teacher Yang confronts her before she can leave with it. He sees the video playing on the laptop over her shoulder and tries to see it, but she wrestles it away and manages to remove the USB without him noticing, which falls onto Hyo-shik’s bed.

Yang sends her back to class, saying that they’ll talk about what he saw on that video later. Soo-ah was unable to grab the USB and she stops at another of her cigarette stash points, and when it’s time for Yang’s class, she’s still not returned. She meets with Director Lee, confessing that this situation has gotten too big for her to handle.

Director Lee has called the school and says that the recording hasn’t gotten out yet, and instructs Soo-ah to go back to school and beg Teacher Yang for understanding. Then she needs to find out what Yeol and Yeon-doo want, offering to bribe them with money if necessary. Yeeeaaah, that can’t possibly backfire.

Ha-joon and Hyo-shik practice trust exercises in their room, with Dong-jae looking on. Ha-joon is bad at it, feeling guilty about dropping Yeon-doo earlier, and humbly asks for help. But he’s distracted, and wanders off when Yeol calls him to get ramyun, making Hyo-shik wonder what’s up with him lately — he never used to worry about anything but studying.

Hyo-shik flops onto his bed and cries out — he landed on the USB that Soo-ah threw there. Thinking it might be something racy, he plugs it into his computer, and sees Soo-ah stealing the USB.

He takes the USB to show Da-mi, who grabs Yeon-doo’s laptop from her locker to watch the video. They figure out that this is why Yeol kept needling Soo-ah at the campout, and wonder why he hasn’t told the school yet.

Soo-ah returns to school, where Teacher Yang yells at her for not doing as he asked and going back to class. She tries to do as Director Lee said and beg for understanding, but the students around them start to murmur… Da-mi sent the video of Soo-ah stealing the test USB to the entire student body. When Soo-ah sees that the video came from Yeon-doo’s computer, she freaks out.

Yeon-doo herself is pretty upset to realize that her computer was used to send the video, though the Real King and Baek Ho students all agree that Da-mi did the right thing, even if she did forget that she was on someone else’s computer. Yeon-doo and Yeol are both upset that Soo-ah still had one day to make it right, and now that’s gone.

Yeon-doo goes looking for Soo-ah, who’s also furiously looking for her. They confront each other at the top of the staircase and Soo-ah slaps Yeon-doo, hard, and snaps that she broke her promise. Yeon-doo tries to explain that this wasn’t her doing nor what she wanted to happen, but Soo-ah is too angry to listen.

She grabs Yeon-doo by the lapels, just as Yeol and Ha-joon reach the bottom of the stairs. Soo-ah accuses Yeon-doo and Yeol of planning this, and yells, “I’m going to kill you, Kang Yeon-doo!”

Screaming, Soo-ah throws Yeon-doo down the stairs. Both boys lunge to catch her, and one of them does, though we don’t see which. They roll to the foot the the steps, landing with Yeon-doo safely on top.

Yeon-doo slowly sits up, staring at her savior in horror. It was Yeol who caught her, and he lays unconscious, bleeding heavily from a head wound.

COMMENTS

You would think that by now we’d all be used to Yeon-doo and her strong sense of fairness and justice, but she just keeps upping the ante. It was impressive when she got back to the campsite and had every right to tell everyone that Soo-ah abandoned her, yet instead she gave Soo-ah a chance to explain herself before telling anyone. But it was also gratifying to see her let fly on Soo-ah when she heard the whole story, because patience and giving people the benefit of the doubt only go so far, especially when that person doesn’t deserve or appreciate it. At some point, you have to face the truth and cut those ties. It was good to see that Yeon-doo is human and has her limits, and is capable of losing her temper and saying harsh things, though it was also very in character for her to regret her words and give Soo-ah one last chance. It’s also very mature of Yeon-doo to know when to give someone a chance to defend themselves, and when to let them know that the grace period is over.

Soo-ah continues to impress as well, if by “impress” you mean “shock and horrify.” She’s proving that she’s capable of, and more than willing to, sink to deeper depths than I gave her credit for in order to get ahead and cover her tracks. For a while there I was willing to give her the benefit of the doubt that she was just a very troubled girl under tremendous pressure, who’s been taught to win at all costs, because at times she truly seems conflicted and horrified at her own actions. But I don’t believe her tears anymore — anyone with a halfway-normal psyche knows that you don’t throw someone down the stairs just because you’re angry at them, especially when the cat’s out of the bag and it’s too late to hide anymore. There’s no explaining that away, other than that Soo-ah is suffering from some pretty serious psychosis and needs professional help. I’m not even interested in seeing her realize the error of her ways and be redeemed anymore — she has now actually, deliberately tried to kill someone, and she needs serious intervention, immediately.

On the romance front, we all know that Yeol likes Yeon-doo, but what’s even better is how you can just see his respect for her growing the closer they become. When he was confronting Soo-ah at the campsite and Yeon-doo joined the argument, Yeol pretty much let Yeon-doo do all the talking, even on his behalf. It’s a small thing but speaks volumes, and it’s the first time we’ve seen the two of them in such a united front against their common enemy. For Yeol to let Yeon-doo take the reins and speak for him is pretty huge for the guy who vowed never to trust another human being. I love that as much as he has romantic feelings for Yeon-doo, he also sees and treats her as an equal. Even when she got upset enough that she started making threats, he didn’t say anything until they were alone, which shows tremendous respect on his part. And even though he was concerned by her over-the-top outburst, he let her handle the situation her own way, and didn’t try to tell her what to do or stop her.

But Ha-joon… he’s killing me. The way he looks at Yeon-doo is just so sweet, and her harmelss (on her end) flirting isn’t helping. In that, Yeol is right, that she shouldn’t be flirting with Ha-joon because you never know what it might lead to. Ha-joon’s crush is evident now, and so far he’s keeping it to himself, but if she doesn’t nip that in the bud it could lead to Very Bad Things. I worry that if he doesn’t realize soon that Yeol has dibs on Yeon-doo (in the sense that she obviously likes him back), he’s heading for a major heartbreak.

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Thank you so much for the recap!!! I was really down yesterday because of the episode, but going on DB made things a bit better.

Cheers.

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By the way... For those of you who felt like me, and felt upset by things, this video works every time. I dare you to watch it until the end, without cracking into a smile. :D

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDiE2UWJocQ

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I tried, but I failed 6 seconds in...lol

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Me too :-)

I don’t think I even lasted for more than 3 seconds. He has THE MOST infectious smile!

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You still beat me. I lasted 0.5 secs
basically the moment his face appeared on the screen, I had a goofy smile on my face

I will be forever grateful to Cheer Up for introducing me to Lee Wongeun's smile

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I lasted 10 seconds... lol

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3 seconds here too :)

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Me too!

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i don't think i even lasted for a second......

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Lol same here! That smile is too powerful :)

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His smile <3 <3 I didn't know of him before but now I am so taken by him. Though if only I didn't ship him this hard with Eunji...I don't know if I'll be able to bear a drama where they aren't the main couple :P

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I genuinely tried. Somehow, in the middle of the video, I found myself with a smile on my face without knowing when it started. Heol.

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Also wanted to thank you for your dedication to Sassy Go Go. Love your blog, and the fact that you're not afraid to explore the heavier topics. Those lengthy posts and commentaries are the best!

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ikr!! im listening to her podcast right now, n im so glad she's talking about this. pressure from schools n suicide is a real thing n we should be talking about this.

@Miraclan Thank you for speaking up! i know you said you were afraid to, but i'm glad you are discussing it. will comment more when i finish it.

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where can I find her blog?? :)) I enjoy reading drama commentaries.

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@Lizzie In case I'm breaking some internet etiquette, I'm just going to tell you to click on her name "Miraclan." You'll find all her posts on SGG, and the podcast they're talking about is the post called Episode 10 commentary. It's long, but makes really good points. I think listening to all of it would be worth it if you're interested in the issues. It's a meaningful way to "kill time" for me. I can combine my fluffy love for SGG with "real issues."

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@emily loves sassy. I never knew clicking on ppls names sent you to their blogs..aha Thank you!:))

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@Emily loves Sassy - Thanks! I never knew that either.

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Did anyone tell you that your daebak???

Thank you so much for that video. I didn't even try. Just smiled throughout.

I'm in a private school in Luxembourg, and it's tough at times. It's a small country, so it's relatively peaceful and calm. There isn't any outright competition, but you can feel the pressure. Sometimes, you feel as if you're not good enough. I agree with all the people below. Thank you for talking about something important. It makes me feel happy to know someone understands how it feels, and sometimes, it's so hard you feel like you're going crazy. I haven't done anything extreme but I've seen some of my classmates do them. Most of the time, we can get away with stuff, so it becomes a game of how to get even better. I know it's wrong, but we need to think of college. I'm planning to go to a prestigious uni in the UK in 2 years, and it's so much pressure. And even though many of us feel that way, none of us can talk to each other about it. If you have that "mental case" label on you, it's over. I know one girl who cracked completely.
I know we have it pretty easy compared to other countries and systems so I shouldn't complain. But it feels good listening to you, and knowing at least some of our pain is understood by others.

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I meant I agree with people above me, not below. It was below when I typed in the comment box.

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SO.CUTE. That smile on 0:16. So flirty and annoying coz there's no chance you can resist!

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Hahaha. Lee Won Geun/Kim Yeol, please stop smiling. You'll kill us all ^____^ Thanks for the video. Definitely made my day~

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Seconding this, that smile will be the death of me. He needs to be stopped! (but then he will get that puppy look and slay us all again even when he's not smiling, oops)

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I tried. But my lips formed a weird shape started at 0:10 hahaa.. Thanks for the video. Will definitely download it and copy it to my phone for my daily dose of Kim Yeol ♥

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Thanks for this video:)

I didn't try. And i Failed!! So much cuteness how can i resist it??

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Love LWG's cute, infectious smile!! I first saw him in Hyde, Jekyll, Me and so glad he got to play Yeol here!! ^^

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omgosh. thanks for sharing this video. i love lwg smile. so thankful for this drama for introducing us the amazingness of lwg!!!

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I didn't last for a second.. I couldn't resist his smile omg... whyyyyyy.....

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On the upside, the Yeol/Yeon-doo caps are back at the top of the recap!

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didn't even notice it!! yay!!!

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I really hated Episode 10 (despite my tears). However, when I took a moment to think it through, I can say that I've come to terms with episode 10.

Actually, I think Episode 10 is probably the manifestation of the message that the writer is probably trying to send out right from the very beginning and with Yeon Doo's characterization. Not everyone's gonna agree and it probably won't be satisfying for most either, but the message has a value.

[Note: There might be possible spoilers from here on]

[SPOILER DELETED]

I think the message is this. We have become an unforgiving society (k-netizens especially) to the point that we unconsciously become vindictive. When a person commits a mistake, we reprimand him/her. We rebuke him/her. We make him/her an outcast. We kick a person while they are down. We make the person feel alone because we think that's the only way the person will learn his/her lesson. We drive a person to feel like he/she deserves to die for the wrong that he/she has done. Should that make us happy?

I think the writer is telling us that it won't. It shouldn't. Just like how a sinful person can spiral out of control, the people around him/her likewise do and it does not make them better persons. It does not make the world a better place to live.

I think the message is telling us that when a person who commits a mistake, acknowledge that mistake, feels remorseful of his ways, asks for our forgiveness and asks for our hand. We should extend it out to them and not throw their hands away. It does not mean that he/she would not pay for what he/she has done. It just means that you will be with him/her as he/she faces the consequences of the wrong that she has done.

[SPOILER DELETED]

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her a fool? Sure. But, I really don't think so. I think it is wise. It will probably hurt more in your guts that when you slap an innocent person on his face, he goes around and offer you his other cheek. How inadequate would you feel that he repays your pettiness with selflessness.

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wow. are you a mind reader, or how did u manage to know what Mira said in her podcast??? my mind is blown.

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I'm sorry but who is Mira? Why is everyone talking about her.

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hmmm okay I just got it. Miraclan is Mira. Nope I haven't heard the podcast. Where can I access it?

It's so weird. I remember posting the reply to commenter #3 not here. But I can't find my reply there and see it here instead.

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Ooo SPOLIERS FOR EPISODE 10 ALERT!!! PROCEED WITH CAUTION!!

I totally agree tho! ]

[SPOILER DELETED]

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Uh.... Either you replied to the wrong comment, or I don't think you listened to what Mira talked about. lol.

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I actually was okay with the way episode 10 came out. I think what they showed us with Soo-ah was what they were trying to go for from the beginning but it was a bit rushed and too late. Many viewers really hate her at this point so it'd be hard for some to come out liking the way episode 10 turned out.

However, while I really disliked her actions at times, I still didn't hate Soo-ah. We're only seeing her for this short period of time where she's only doing bad things. For many viewers, the reasons she has isn't enough. Don't get me wrong, she's done really horrible things. But I saw her struggle more from the perspective of her growing up her WHOLE life with that kind of mother: someone who is demanding and brushes aside morals and suffering like its nothing. Not only that, when Soo-ah does something wrong, instead of punishing her like most parents, she finds a way to cover it up and "take care of it". What person would be completely messed up after a lifetime of that.

Plus, its kinda related what you said in regards to reprimanding someone who does wrong. I think thats an important contrast with Soo-ah. The person who she really doing this all for, her mom, is also the person who only is mad at her about specs and grades, but helps her cover up the actions that she should really be punished for.

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That mistake you speak so lightly off consists of theft, cheating, invasion of privacy, wrongful accusation, defamation, destroying evidence and bodily injury near to causing death for which she would be penalized with imprisonment, even if she is a minor and depressed.
Are you being so understanding because all her ideas back fired? Had she succeeded in destroying Yang's career, caused YD to break her neck or Yeol to attend an inferior college, would you be so sympathetic?

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lol Soo-ah wouldn't be penalised with anything in South Korea, since even convicted murderers can get out of jail in a few years.

And advocating understanding of an abused girl who's going to pay the price of ignoring her own humanity (because that's what Soo-ah is, even if her scars aren't physical like Ha-joon's) is not the same as dismissing her crimes.

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The point is not how much sentence she finally gets and how long she actually servers or the condition of South Korea judiciary. It is that her actions were too grave to be dismissed as 'mistakes' or 'lol' where you cannot say she should not be rebuked or outcasted.

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NO ONE is dismissing Soo-ah's crimes, and the 'lol' was aimed at the idea expressed in your previous comment that a minor in South Korea would be penalised with imprisonment, when even hardened criminals get off with far less for worse crimes.

Please stop twisting people's words around, it adds nothing to the discussion.

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My comment was not about serving term. It was about the level of penalty such crimes carry. Not my fault if you cannot distinguish between the two.
And you dismissed it by brushing it aside as 'mistakes' and saying it is wrong for the society to rebuke or outcast her.

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@This is Cat - really stop twisting people's words. @pogo did not even use the word 'mistakes' to described Soo Ah's actions, stop telling falsehoods about what other commenters say so you can take out your anger at Soo Ah on them.

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You don't have a working knowledge of it. This is based on your comment where you think Soo Ah's victims are the best people to decide the punishment. You are fine with it now cause it is happy ending for all. But you are putting that much of power in the victims hand when they would not be in optimum state of health, would be open to threats to family not just in high level cases, bribery. It would further cause inequality in distribution of justice. It is why the State prosecutes criminal acts, protects the victim, judges decide being neutral party. Sure there is bribery and corruption but with your method the system would go downhill really fast.

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Forgot to add: possibility of undue harshness from the victim to the convicted person. Overall existence of conflict of interest.

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ok, miss great criminal law expert. Obviously people are going to look at the other characters and what they want when thinking of Soo Ah's punishment but this is a drama, at least they remember that.

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@ pigsnout|SassyGoHigh ♥♥♥ it is @pogo who said brought up Korea's real judicial system in equation, not me. It is fair to use it to address stupid ideas. No one needs to be expert to understand the basic concept of conflict of interest and why the law provides for different roles. It comes up in news quite often for people to be aware.

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Wow. What happened within a day? lol. This comment thread turned into chaos... but oh well, chaos can be good fun too. XD

@all of you "failing" the challenge, and being so happy about it. LOL. You're welcome. ^^ That's the magic of LWG smile. <3 I can just imagine getting into a quarrel with him, and being unable to stay angry within 1s. of that fight. XD

@all of you who liked my podcast. Thanks. I'm glad it was of help for some of you.

@Elodie Hang in there! Don't pressure yourself too much. The worst that can happen is you fail to achieve your goals, and I can assure you that even then, you still have a bright life ahead of you. It's just a matter of viewing it as a journey, and taking another road that might lead you to an even better place.

@pogo love sassy go go Oooh. Nice catch! ;) I'm all happy again. XD

@leethehey LOL. That comment being in the wrong place happens to me sometimes as well. And I know you said that you didn't intend to reply to me, but would you mind if I quoted you in my post? I would credit you.

@dooleygongshil +1 with your comment. Plus, glad to see dooley shipping is still alive?

@This is Cat Uh.. I'm not sure whether or not you're talking to me, since I didn't mention any mistake... unless you're referring to what I talked about elsewhere?

If you're talking about my podcast...
I'm not being understanding because her ideas backfired, I'm being understand because I try to view her as someone I care about. If she was someone who was part of my family. As a member of the family of someone who did wrong, your concern is really about their well-being. You accept, and even see the necessity for them to receive the consequences of their actions (and those consequences don't mean incarceration in all countries. and depending on the kind of justice system you believe is more effective, might not mean other things as well, depending on the relationship between the victims and the criminal). And I think that as a society, promoting the culture of being understanding towards each other is moving toward a good direction. I want the Justice system to treat everyone as if they were members of the family.

If Yeol were to break his neck, I would grieve for his family members and friends. And I would hope they would be able to recover, and find peace, and live their lives on as normally as possible. And I would still want Soo-Ah, if she has the potential for it, to return as a functional member of society, and contribute to it in the future.

The Justice system is about repairing the damage and balance by retribution, incapacitation, deterrence, restoration, and rehabilitation. My point is we should emphasise, and prioritise our concerns to restoration, and rehabilitation. For both the victims and the perpetrator. A society which gives up on their criminals is not one which will function well. ie. See American prison system with recidivism, vs. other Denmark/Norway, etc.

In many...

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If Yeol breaks his neck or becomes amnesia, his friends would 100% not let Soo Ah go, especially Yeon Doo and Ha Joon, these two would probably be the first ones to finish up with Soo Ah, seriously. Yeon Doo and Ha Joon are the kind of people who definitely would do anything for their friends, they care more about their friends than themselves, they are both the types who acts upon their feelings, and are just indomitably loyal to their friends once you reach out to them or when they reach out to you. I know clearly how Ha Joon would be if something happens to Yeol, but Yeon Doo... I would say, Yeol was the second person who became personally close to her, first is Dong Jae, her childhood friend, I'm not counting the RK kids because though they ARE close and loyal to her (especially Min Hyo Sik), but they're NOT personally close to her like Dong Jae and Yeol, adding Ha Joon too, so the RK kids doesn't really understand her as much as DJ, KY, and HJ, who are personally close to her. Anyways, if something happens to Yeol, what will happen to Yeon Doo? Just seeing how lonely she felt in episode 7, when Yeol wasn't at school due to being accused of stealing Teacher Im's USB, she would probably feel out of place if something worst happens to Yeol. We already know how Ha Joon would be and feel with Yeol, but Yeon Doo too, I bet she would be totally out of place without him too, though she may have DJ and the RK kids by her side, but Yeol was actually the second person to be personally close to her, while her first is Dong Jae.

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In many cultures, we are so used to thinking of justice just as retribution, first and foremost. Retribution is so engrained in our psyche that it becomes natural to think of it as justice. But it's not the only aspect of justice. And we should focus more on how to repair the damage, and make things better (as a society). Rather than be concerned about getting a criminal punished, we should put our brain power and energy into saving what we can from the mess. And by understanding Soo Ah, you see that she is one of those things that could be saved, if we tried.

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Just realised This is Cat was not replying to me. Haha. Just when I talked to leethehey about going to the wrong comment. ^^"""""""""
Oh well, my reply is still relevant. So there. XD

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Rather than getting the person punished!!! Please tell that to family or the victims who were killed, injured, framed, that the criminal/accused is remorseful, that there was legit reason who such a crime, so please be lenient...there might be a criminal court where you live.
Besides only retribution is old school of jurisprudence. Currently there is retribution, deterrence and rehabilitation. The victim has to be compensated, the guilty party needs to be stopped from doing further crimes and focus on how to prevent such crimes and the criminal needs to be rehabilitated.
Soo Ah's circumstances would lessen the degree and amount of punishment, it won't make it go away. What sought of message are sending when you think is the other party is remorseful should go unpunished? Where people distancing them from being hurt is wrong.

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I cannot comment on why European countries have low degree of recidivism but I do not think it can be summarized with rehabilitation opportunists. There are so many ways in which USA and Denmark are different.
You mention return as functional member...so I assume that you believe she should be punished?

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Well, I rather talked about it at length in the past days, so I'll try not to ramble on more.
Re:As someone whose family member was victimised, I can tell you that wallowing in the need for revenge does nothing for you but feed your grief with anger, frustration, and just plain misery. I don't want a society in which you encourage the need to focus on the criminal being punished for personal satisfaction, rather than the damage being repaired. And trust me, to see the criminal being punished does nothing to repair the grief you can feel. You find out that the sense of injustice at being the victim doesn't go away, because it is unjust in the first place, no matter what happens after. It's only when you start to let go, and focus on yourself that you move on. Using the criminal's misery to move on is not healthy.
Re: I'm not saying that there is no need for punishment. I'm saying as a society, we shouldn't focus on it to the degree we do. As I've said and you've pointed out yourself, there are several aspects to the justice system, and the focus of punishment is much too strong in society.
Re: European countries have a homogenous society, which leads it to be easier to be understanding, and thus easier to be accepting of each other, including their criminals. America = melting pot = divide = criminals are not our problems. Ergo, it is important to foster a culture of understanding as a whole. You never know, you might need to be the one being understood one day.
Re: It's not so much whether I believe she needs to be punished, as I believe she needs to be helped, as well as all her victims finding reparation. If punishment is smth that is believed to do that, so be it. It's not something that I want just for the sake of it. I also believe in fairness, ergo, everyone in society needs to be treated fairly. But rather than needing fairness in punishment, I'd rather it be fairness in leniency. Right now, in many countries, neither is true. lol.

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Soo-ah is legit psycho

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I enjoyed very much this episode and I can't put into words what I thought.
I'm loving the show despite some things going on.

But episode 10 pissed me off so much. Waiting anxiously to see the recap and opinions for it soon.

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I won't talk specifically but I personally liked how episode 10 went. Yeah maybe a bit too rushed but the feel was consistent with the rest of the series.

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yeah, I do agree there - it was definitely consistent with the rest of the series and with the characters, the only real flaw is that it was rushed. But I guess we should stick to discussing episode 9....

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1. So it is clear now that Hajoon see Yeondoo as a firstlove. I HATE IT, SERIOUSLY. Hajoon will suffer one-side love ? In my opinion, it would be better if Hajoon consider Yeondoo as a precious friend besides Yeol, support their romance, and make a very strong friendship trio. Its untypical yet so beautiful. And how come Hajoon cannot see his BFF flirting and close to Yeondoo all this time, like for 8 episodes? Seriously, show? And eventhough at the end the bromance is not falling apart or Hajoon decided to support Yeol-Yeondoo pairing, it would break my heart seeing them as a rival ? Hajoon would see Yeol as someone who "wins" his firstlove.

2. I think Yeol is FIT PERFECTLY as Yeol and male lead. I believe in him as a character and his acting is really good. His chemistry with Eunji is off the chart. Aaaand, the most I important thing is THAT SMILE. I smile back at him everythime he smiles at my screen. Its super weird. Enough said, I think I am in love with him.

3. If Yeol not end up with Yeondoo at the end, I would be really dissapointed, considering they are SUPER CUTE in every episodes. The whole parent-dating plot make me nervous. I hope Yeondoo or Yeol don't be a nobel idiot. Chaebal!!! I believe in you writer-nim!!! ?

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In episode 10, when Yeol was talking about what they promised each other when they were kids that once they find a girl that they truly likes, they will tell each other, so that also means that Yeon Doo is not only Ha Joon's first love, but she's also Yeol's first love. She clearly is both of their first love, 2 guys liking the same girl. But for Yeon Doo, Yeol is clearly her first love. But the thing is that she has a friendly nature in her that it doesn't make it hard for others to like her, in that is the case of Ha Joon. He falls for Yeon Doo because of her loyalty, kindness, and her optimism, and this is probably the same reason for Yeol as well hahah The other guys can easily fall for her as well, but gladly they didn't, or else it will be way harder haha And also knowing that Dong Jae is Yeon Doo's childhood, he could have fall for her as well, but gladly he doesn't, but you can see she earned so much of his trust to her. Now she earns Ha Joon and Yeol's trust, and even earn their hearts hahah Otteoke...

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Let's not have ep 10 spoilers please? We need to comment on the ep 10 recap too :(

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I may be reading too much into it, but I was rewatching the earlier episodes and I couldn't help but wonder — what if Hajoon is mistaking friendship for love? Considering how his father treats him, I don't think it's a stretch to say that he may not have experienced love before. If this is the case, since he's been friends with Yeol for so long, his strong feelings for Yeondoo may be confusing him. I don't think he's in love with her so much as he cares for her. He hasn't expressed any romantic interest in her — he didn't initiate the hug in episode 8 - 9, and there haven't been any scenes in which he clearly shows romantic desire for her (e.g. staring at her lips, wanting to touch her). I think he genuinely wants to protect her, just like how Yeol has always protected him. His abusive relationship with his father has led him to seek refuge in his friendship with Yeol. He's grateful for Yeol's care and companionship, and he reciprocates by always putting him first. When he was practicing the trust fall with Hyoshik, he rushed off the moment Yeol called, even though all he wanted to do was eat ramyeon. As much as he wants to train for Yeondoo's sake, he still puts Yeol first. In fact, if Yeol was a girl, they'd be a typical K-drama couple. Sooah pointed out that Yeol and Hajoon seem a little too close, and I'd say she's right — Hajoon loves Yeol. Maybe not in the romantic sense, but his love for him definitely runs deeper than mere friendship. I think Hajoon's just the type of person who loves deeply, especially to the people who show care for him, because there aren't that many of them. That's why he loves Yeondoo, because she protected him even though she didn't need to, and she treated him as a friend. He finds himself wanting to protect her too, to care for her and stay by her side when things get tough, and I don't think he realises that those are things that constitute friendship. He's only ever had Yeol as a true friend, so now that he has strong feelings towards a girl, he doesn't know what to make of it. I think that's why he didn't answer Hyoshik's question at the campfire — not because he couldn't admit it in front of Yeondoo (he could've just said yes, without revealing who it is), but because he wasn't sure himself. He loves Yeol and Yeondoo, that's for sure, but I don't think it's in the romantic sense.

But like I said, I may be reading too much into it, and the writers are actually just going for a love triangle...

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"...What if Hajoon is mistaking friendship for love?"

I was thinking the same thing too!

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your summary is really amazing! the way Ha-joon and Yeol look at Yeon Doo is also different.. (eg;both watched her sleeping but their expression somewhat different)

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I wondered why Hajoon would fall for a girl his best friend clearly likes...but looking back through the episodes, Yeol is a big flirt. I think Hajoon didn't know Yeol was serious this time.

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That he is. I firmly believe that if Soo-ah hadn't startled them, Yeol would've gone for the kiss back in Episode 1, just to tick off Yeon Doo.

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Yeon Doo would have punched him first before he actually got to kiss her lol

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"I wondered why Hajoon would fall for a girl his best friend clearly likes"

'falling' for someone is not something someone can control. it is perfectly natural&healthy for hajoon to develop strong feelings towards someone he is getting closer to emotionally after being deprived, a cute girl who has shown concern for his well being, regardless whether she is his friend's 'girl' or whatever. what he /will/ do because of these feelings, is what makes the difference. either he'd try to compete for her, and risk having a falling out with Yeol (which is something i can't see he'd do), or simply accept the fact they're together and be content in staying as friends (which is something i hope he'd do)

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Exactly, feelings are not something Ha Joon can control, and people develop those kinds of feelings all the time. Yeon Doo is, like you said, a cute girl who has shown that she regards him as a friend, likes to spend time with him, and is loyal and trustworthy and more than anything, genuine. Ha Joon has simply never had any real friends other than Yeol, and Yeon Doo is the first one to actually treat him as one. It's natural that he could develop feelings for her, especially after them being unired in a common goal.

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Oh no I meant united, not unired.

And I agree that what Ha Joon chooses to do about his feelings is more important. I don't think he wants to hurt Yeol, he is much more likely to keep quiet and try to get over it. It's his best friend after all.

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Ha Joon is a very guarded person and I don't think he would want to endanger his relationship with Yeol, but he didn't seem to think twice once he got close to Yeon Do. He probably would have liked her regardless, but I wondered why he didn't struggle with it more. Yes, it is natural, didn't say it wasn't, but as mentioned Yeol is his best friend. It would also be natural, if he knew of Yeol's feelings, to worry about hurting the friendship. My comment was simply speculation that he didn't know how Yeol felt.

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Also, I made that comment before I saw 10 so I was also speculating about Ha Joon's feelings.

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Imagine me opening my mouth and inserting my entire foot, lol. Sorry for misleading everyone with my wishful thinking, I'm so embarrassed...

I'm surprised that the blackmailer was Y! I think it was Miranda who pointed out that he was always the one to communicate in sticky notes, and we're all aware he was petty enough to do this. He was the most obvious culprit considering the rhetoric of the story but I was reading too much into what I wanted to happen. I feel a little silly.

I'm actually starting to wonder if DJ WAS the culprit at one point but the storyline got scrapped? There's a bit of footage and audio in the episode 9 preview that wasn't in the final product where it looked like he was having a serious talk with SA and it shifted my suspicions onto him. This obviously never happened. I can't say I'm really happy about that.

I wonder if I like that this built up the antagonistic relationship between Yeol and SA? I like how this is a continuation between their dynamic - SA being smart and resourceful, but too sloppy to stay ahead of Y. I like how Y and YD decided to take the high road but SA ended up getting her slap on the wrist anyway. Holy crow it's about time! Everyone's been in character and we've finally gotten to the point where SA has hit her own personal rock bottom - I'm fairly sure now that Y is injured SA's going to have a crisis which leads to her weird date with DJ.

Still, I'm not sure if I'm too happy? Sure, I got the participation I wanted from Team Real King (welcome back, kids, I missed you), and this did lead to SA getting her comeuppance, but I feel like the payoff was focused on what YD and Y were getting in righteous anger and moral superiority. It wasn't wrong or out of character for YD to lose her patience with them (she DID make a promise and it was within her right to be upset at them) but I'm still bummed about how this shoved Team Real King's care for her and Y back at them like they made some grave error. They wanted SA to face the consequences of her actions and I don't know if getting Y injured was a rhetorically consistent result of what they did. I know good intentions only take you so far, and it wasn't Real King's fault, obviously, but this seems forced in a way the rest of the show wasn't. On top of that, the consequences didn't seem like they were as much for them as they were for YD and Y, whereas just a few episodes ago the consequences of Jae Young's actions went back to characterize her more than almost anyone else, even SA. I'm disappointed that Hyo Sik and Da Mi didn't get the same treatment.

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I also wonder if this may be a case of too little too late. I don't know if 3 episodes will be enough for us to want to see SA happy. I mean, I'm glad because I've always felt sad for her and hoped something would give so she could finally start to breathe, but I'm not sure if everyone else feels the same way. (On a side note - I'd have preferred that YD went on the date with her because... I want them to patch up face-to-face, I guess. In the universe of the show, it wouldn't make much sense, I know, but it would have been nice.)

Speaking of HJ... Love triangle why. I'm certain that we're leading up to HJ realizing that that he's got a crush and coming to terms with the fact that he's gotta uncrush to protect his friendship with YD. I do like that he's thinking on his own quietly and being an excellent friend in the meantime instead of being unnecessarily stand-offish in order to fall out of love. That could very easily have happened. I'm still bummed, but I don't want to impose what I want on a story just because it wasn't what I was expecting. That's on me for getting wrapped up in what I wanted. It could have been worse and I still like what we have now. I just wish I could just turn back the clock and warn me not to get ahead of myself.

I still love indomitable YD and her adventures in cheerleading, but I'm antsy about the future of the show. With SA's antagonistic force gone, I'm wondering how the writing team is planning on making a compelling story. I'm not saying that we can't have one without SA stirring shit up in the background, but they used SA as a catalyst for so long that I wonder if the writers are confident enough to tread into new territory without using Soo Ah's hatred as a catalyst for the plot. I WANT this to happen, and I know how I would go about it, but I can't say that I'm expecting it to happen. If it were me, this break would have happened two episodes ago, before it was late in the narrative rhythm, so we could regain our sympathy for Soo Ah. If what's coming is the imminent love triangle plot... well. I'm waiting, but more patiently now.

... To be honest, I want to talk about what I wanted to happen with Dong Jae as the blackmailer with someone!!! This is too long already, though. I'm embarrassed by how much I wanted it and how much it's not going to happen. Haha... golly. Anyone up for some now completely out of character AU fanfiction?

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I’m certain that we’re leading up to HJ realizing that that he’s got a crush and coming to terms with the fact that he’s gotta uncrush to protect his friendship with YD.

yeah, that was what I thought too - but even ahead of Yeon-doo, he's going to prioritise uncrushing and dealing with it so he can protect Yeol from that knowledge. As of episode 9, I think he's only just started to realise what the warm fuzzy feelings he has around Yeon-doo add up to, and the hug was the trigger. But he has registered Yeol's interest in her before and even if he doesn't quite know that Yeol's serious and not only teasing/trolling her, he does know on some level.

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Yeah, that too. Hm... how do I say this? I was in this drama for the platonic friendships, especially the ones that crossed gender barriers, so HJ's crush was never up my alley (not that the grounds for it weren't there! i'm not saying it wasn't reasonable. i just wasn't ever caught up in anything more than the friendship angle. to be honest i was only tangentially interested in the whole YD/Y ship, if anything, so the bulk of the shipping going on never interested me. seriously, i'm a friendship freak.)

The signs are there, I absolutely agree with you! I just have no solid commentary. I was much more invested in YD and HJ's friendship from the start, and I always felt like HJ needed more friends than lovers in life. This plot just seemed a little unnecessary and tangential to the main idea of the show when the plot itself already had very little time to utilize. Like, where did HJ reaching out to SA back at the water go? Did that ever amount to anything but a one-off thing? Did Jisoo and Eunji's insane chemistry kill that plot trail in the water? That would SERIOUSLY tick me off lol. My concerns have been more focused on the craft of the show than the characterization (which has been remarkably complex and consistent, no matter how I feel about the show.)

I think that the Y+HJ unit will be fine. This is Sassy Go Go and I'm not really expecting them to have anything more than a dozen tortuous feelings about liking the same girl before HJ opts to give YD over to Y (which, by the way, if it's phrased like that it is going to drive me NUTS). HJ is a good kid and I don't expect him to make any new problems (and if he does I really will lose faith in the show.) I've just never been into a love triangle and I never will be.

:( Sorry I can't give better commentary on this. Y and HJ's friendship, while wonderful and strong, hasn't been my investment in the show.

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But this is sort of good for Ha Joon, even if it hurts initially: he's probably never had a crush in his life, and it also sounds like Yeol's never seriously dated a girl before (though flirting up a storm). It's been Ha Joon and Yeol agains the world since they were little kids, and the reality of that was Yeol taking the lead and Ha Joon trying not to fall apart. Ha Joon's world has been vanishingly small: angry dad, studying, and Yeol.

Now there's Yeon Doo, and she's a good complication. He's feeling a crush, he's in a position to put Yeol first, he's going to have to figure out how to shape his relationship with Yeon Doo. These are all thing he's a good 6 years behind on, honestly. They're outside-world problems that Ha Joon hasn't had the emotional energy to face until now, and Yeon Doo is an excellent trial case because there's really no way things can go wrong: she's not going to flirt with him, she's not going to lie to him, she's not going to stop being his friend, and if he tries to cut her off she's just going to keep coming at him until he makes room for her.

He'll be okay. This isn't a growing pain you can avoid forever.

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@Miranda - I agree. I think this is a growing pain Ha-joon has to face up to, but he's definitely strong enough not to let it crush him totally - Yeol is too important to him for that. I do love the way Yeon-doo has drawn both him and Yeol out of their little unit of two, and made them both stronger for it. This isn't something that will destroy them, no way.

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Agreed on all counts. I'm not saying that what you two are saying isn't fair, or reasonable, or even unimportant or not compelling. It's all important, and I think the show will exemplify the strength Ha Joon (and Yeol and Yeon Doo) has needed to gain as a person to face life after school as we proceed into the last week. It's a very valuable story, and one that I'm very glad is on TV.

... I'm just not invested in it, lol. I'm really glad that you guys have found a lot to discuss, though? It's a testament to good TV that people can find value in parts that others may pass by.

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@Miranda ~ Ha Joon wouldn't cut her out lol Yes, Yeol IS too important to him, but for what Yeon Doo have done for him and was the one who actually changed him for the better, even though it's painful for him to have strong feelings on her, he still wouldn't cut her off and wouldn't think of betraying her (betraying, as in drop her out of his life) either. I'm glad that everything has been solved now :) Basically, not just the bromance that survived from this great trial of Yeon Doo, but also the friendships between them three has survived as well, now the three of them has no more secrets and guilts with one another, it was counted as their confidantes in one another too haha But I'm sure, there will be more trials in these three friendships and relationship in the future too, but looking how strong they have become, I'm sure they will survive it through together, just like how the sisterhood of YD and SA survived through so much evil, and how the trial of Yeon Doo survived for the bromance and their relationship with her. Now they are sharing her with each other hahaha

However, what about Yeon Doo's friendship with Dong Jae? hahah DJ probably privately felt like Ha Joon felt when he found the closeness between YD and KY at first, like Yeol's taking his best friend away from him hahah Or maybe not. But DJ, IS sort of like HJ in a way, because they are always with YD and KY, but then YD and KY enters one another's life. hahah I do wonder how DJ actually feels when Yeol enters her life, I know it's different from the way the RK kids entered YD's life because though they entered her life, they aren't exactly personally close to her like how Yeol enters her life.

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I totally thought it was Dong Jae as the blackmailer, partially because I wanted him to be. For once I hadn't formulated much of how or why I wanted it so I will be glad to listen.

What is AU fan fiction? Alternate universe?

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That's correct! I'm calling DJ being the blackmailer an AU fanfiction because it changes very crucial parts of DJ's character and assumes that the love triangle takes a back seat to actual plot occurring. (Not that we need much plot for the main draw of the show to happen - Sir Crinkles and Miss Eunji, I'm looking at you two).

I have a much longer answer for you but I am actually pretty emotional about this and I've probably typed something in my reply that I will regret tomorrow. :( I will have a better, less emotionally fueled answer tomorrow sometime, I promise.

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I will look forward to it. Chocolate and walking helps me regain an emotional balance. (As much as I'm capable)

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thanks bud, I've done both and I'm definitely better now. :)

This ended up a little emotional anyway but I did try to pull myself back. A caveat: this DOES come from a place of extreme bias (I got into this drama for Hakyeon, I'm not going back on that), but I tried to approach my feelings based on what I would have liked for the story as a whole, not just for DJ. I am not the writer so I can't say I could've done it better, but I made a story I would've enjoyed! I hope other people would've liked to watch this too.

The key point in this episode for DJ was revealing that he didn't want to hurt anyone as a result of his actions, without any pretense or subtext to his emotions. This cemented the characterization that he couldn't be the person blackmailing SA. However, before that moment, his motivations were up in the air because we didn't know anything about him. We could point out reasons why the notes could have been from Y or Jae Young or Da Mi, or why it couldn't be HJ or Hyo Sik, but with DJ we had no clue. There was a lack of good characterization going on here. However, the moment at the campfire was the lynchpin of the whole season with regards to his character: this is the first time we had any perspective on DJ's thoughts besides his fight over his disability. This was the penultimate chance for us to see what was really going on in DJ's head.

The directors had a clear choice to make here: was this show going to be more about the ensemble or was it going to be about Yeon Doo and her boys? The culprit was then written to be Yeol, which simplified DJ's character and allowed the proceeding situation to revolve around SA, Y, YD, and HJ. Boiling DJ down to his one problem made him narrative dead weight after episode 10, allowing the writing team to neatly cut him (and SA, who is also narrative dead weight at this point) out of any ensuing drama. The plot wouldn't be relative to him, not anymore. His story is done.

(As an aside, I'm kind of upset about this because the show literally made his character about his disability. The rest was just being a peripheral character to YD and SA's character arcs. Like, can we have a character with a disability whose struggle isn't solely about his disability? Anyone? Please?)

His character could have easily been written the other way around: that despite his fear of hurting others through his own actions, he would go that far for Yeon Doo, and perhaps realize his mistake too late, making him become someone he didn't want to be. That is a VERY interesting conflict to add a character who only has one to work with.

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Seriously, think about it. If he had been clever this entire time, then SA would have gotten her comeuppance. Assuming he hadn't forgotten all the shit he's found out about her, he had all the proof he needed to get her not only kicked out of school but blacklisted from any university worth its salt. Assuming Y and YD wouldn't, imagine him being the kind of person who would for petty revenge. Presenting the proof to the school (or hey, through social media, which is a thing in SGG land) would have completely ruined SA's life. Imagine the fall out from that! (Actually, I've fully imagined the fall out from that, and it would have affected every single other character in the show, to the point where they would actually have to consider the bigger picture with regards to their happiness for all of them. I have it all written down. Again, I have written way too much about this but like, ask me again for the alternate universe where we weren't headed towards a love triangle and I will deliver. (Probably in the next post actually, I've been obnoxious here, but I have at least 5000 characters (and counting) worth of exposition on a world where everyone in this show was allowed to be interesting. Seriously.))

And that's my beef, I guess: DJ could've been interesting. He could've actually been UP to something instead of being practically missing for the entirety of the show. Instead of just being a cheerleader to YD and a good friend and a sweet person, he'd also be a little too obsessed with YD's wellbeing; his guilt over her fall would have different facets that could have been explored through the latter third of the show. He would've interfered with YD's life to the point where YD would have to actually discuss her relationship with him, and make them face a future where they aren't attached at the hip in the same way (but are still fond of each other and connected and still happy, which was the point of the entire show.)

I think my point is that, while DJ is super sweet and endearing as he is now, he doesn't really have flaws. He's boring. He's got character quirks and he's endearingly obnoxious sometimes, but he's got no dimensions, no true purpose in the story as both as a character and as a tool for the narrative, no real struggle. (Or, well. Okay, he did have one, but that's essentially over in the next episode. No one in the world only has one character flaw to contend with. Not one.) Even Sung Jae in Reply 1997 got a better deal.

I'm more upset about this than I should be, but that was my point. I thought I was getting into an ensemble cast, not three protagonists, a villain with only one or two true facets under her facade, and the human equivalent of a tooth filling. I mean, an adorable tooth filling, yes, but I wanted a person. I really really really did.

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@saehee:
Thank you for your posts! I think you explained your thoughts really well :)

I'm disappointed they didn't go further with Dongjae, because he had the potential to be a multi-faceted character, to be super sweet and loyal to Yeondoo and yet also protective to a fault. His blank expressions could have been part of a larger storyline (e.g. ASD), but the scriptwriters seem to have thrown that away in favour of the love triangle (who are involved in literally everything). I wish they'd explained his forgetfulness, too.

I really wish the show had played out like you described -- it'd be really interesting to explore friendship and what it means to be a best friend without overly interfering or obsessing over your friend. It would also give a convincing explanation to why Dongjae was offscreen for so long. If he'd been the one to reveal everything about Sooah, it would've been a great opportunity for characterisation, and it would also have made the loveline between Dongjae and Sooah more interesting. They'd both have done something wrong to each other, and they'd need to learn how to apologise and forgive.

Dongjae could have been a really interesting character, but they chose to let him fade into the background, just so they could focus on the OTP / love triangle / Sooah. Admittedly, I started watching this drama for Jisoo and Hakyeon, so once they started focusing on the OTP (and their parents) and dropping Hajoon and Dongjae's storylines, I started losing interest. Yes, the OTP is adorable, Sooah is compelling, and I still enjoy the show. But I don't love it as much as I did in the beginning, or as much as I thought I would. :(

Oh well, on the bright side, we'll get to see a LOT more of Hakyeon in four days! :D

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@Aki: COMES BACK ROARING FROM THE DEAD!! Yes, yes, you've made all of my points! DJ literally following SA around to the point where he always caught her at her worst would've explained why YD hadn't been seeing much of her Haddong perfectly: he'd been busy following SA around for the express purpose of making her life hell. Which is, of course, what he promised in the first episode of the show. Brilliant. That would have been some class A writing. Narrative cohesion. Every character has a purpose.

That would have opened up a huge can of worms! SA would have had to renavigate her life as a social outcast, of course... but more importantly, this would have destroyed YD's friendship with DJ. No matter how much YD was betrayed by SA, YD has been a believer in second (and third and fourth) chances from day one. YD would NEVER approve of DJ protecting her like that. Surprise! YD and DJ's relationship would then be interesting and dynamic (without even introducing a loveline!), Yeon Doo would have to wrestle with the fact that despite her best intentions and her desire to take the high ground, shit happens and your closest friends might be the cause. Y and HJ could both approach YD for a quick "define the relationship" between her and DJ and then proceed to define their relationships with each other. Hell, DJ could have then seen the error of his ways - and honestly, blackmailing anyone to that extent and on the level he had would have been disgustingly low and he would've needed the reality check. Imagine SA fucking with DJ with even more malice now that she knows he can take a little more shit than he had first let on! Imagine SA hurting YD to hurt DJ!!! Imagine them pushing each other out of their comfort zones so hard that they end up understanding each other a little more than they would have liked! Like, holy cow!

After that (and maybe after a good tongue-lashing from YD), pulling SA back from the traffic would have actually carried some narrative weight for DJ because that would have been the only chance for him to make things right on so many levels - to take back a wrong he had done with his own hands, to try to begin to undo harm that he did (and this would have been even more significant for SA, who would have truly reached dead rock bottom and have had literally no future from there). They would have had a perfect parallel weight with each other. That scene would have meant something. Like, hell, SA could have still taken DJ out on the date because at that point he'd be the only one who'd still consider it because he's a kid and sometimes he doesn't consider the consequences of his actions and like. He's already had his revenge, maybe he would have been the type to immediately let bygones be bygones after revenge was had. Imagine the date with that kind of overtone hanging over it. Imagine him with that kind of characterization. Things would have been wild.

This happened instead.

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OKAY STARLIGHT TIME:

Did you see Hakyeon's candids from the day after the 9th episode of SGG? Holy shit, I've never seen him look so bummed, not even after the promotion cycles for Hyde. I wouldn't have thought much of it, but the kids were actually trying to make him smile during their appearance in Beijing. Like, legit revving up the aegyo machine to get the smile back on his face. It was really bizarre, I've never seen them so concerned about his wellbeing. This must have hit him really hard. :(

He's been so hyped lately too. :(((( He was back in his hometown for that one concert and he looked SO CUTE smiling like his face was gonna fall off and dancing with so much more energy than earlier in the year. he was super smiley throughout pre-promotions until yesterday... now he still looks like he's having trouble with getting a smile back on his face. I hope his bandmates have been treating him well, the little shits. :P

IM REALLY HYPED ABOUT RAVEN-COLORED HAIR LOVE DRUNK HAKYEON IN A FEW DAYS THOUGH the beat in chained up sounds so nasty and sick i love itttt and the colors are so gooooooood :))) I just hope the content isn't gross or exploitative... otherwise IM HERE FOR RIDICULOUS BDSM VIXX

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@saehee @Aki the possibility of Dong Jae being the blackmailer is an interesting one and might have fit with his character but I think the writers tried to work as much as they could with the actors here. N is quite good for what the role of Ha Dong currently needs, but didn't you mention that his group is working on a comeback I.e. he is busy and probably not spending as much time on the set as the other actors and Eunji? They probably used however much of him they could get and a bigger storyline would need more time from N himself, this drama is already in live shoot for weeks . They don't have that kind of time.

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@pigsnout: This is what happens when you let me make a post without making me wait a day for my emotions to settle, lol. Sorry, I got carried away.

OBJECTIVE ANSWER: You're probably right? It's likely that whatever he was upset about had nothing to do with the drama. I'm speculating with what I've got, which isn't much. He could have been dating someone on the dl and they just broke up (eh, maybe), the jet lag could have gotten to him and the press was taking really unflattering pictures (likely), something might have gone terribly wrong for the promotions for their album (?? maybe? he was perfectly happy about it on the night of Halloween though.) To say that it was the drama would probably be me projecting a bit.

However, I think I have grounds to stand on, at least? He has stated a lot that getting a lead role in a tv show was his goal for this year, and although he has a lot of things to do on his plate, he's in a slowdown from where he was earlier - he usually works himself to the bone, not to put too fine of a point on it, but he's made room for this drama (He was in Nicaragua just before the filming for this drama started on top of everything else he does... honestly.) More filming time added to his schedule wouldn't scare him off if it was something he wanted to do. I think he was prioritizing the drama - most of the work he's gotten completed before or came to a close earlier in the drama's production.

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If I understand the nature of a live shoot, things can be shoved in and taken out in the editing room at the last second if the latest ratings suggest a particular plot line might be more popular than another. However, in order for that kind of editing to take place, all of the possible scenes needed in order for all possible plot lines to occur must be filmed beforehand. You can't summon up the actors the night before for one last minute scene. You need all the pieces before hitting the editing room. I'm not saying I'm right, I'm speculating heavily and in an uneducated fashion, but at the very least I'm certain that all of the necessary scenes for a plot twist like this to occur, if they were filmed, would have probably been filmed before Hakyeon's schedule filled back up to practice for the comeback. It's not a matter of actor scheduling by the time the footage hits the editing room, it's a matter of content and ratings.

If there wasn't evidence that there was additional footage captured that hinted at the show going on a different path, I wouldn't have even said anything, but in the preview for episode 9 there is a scene of Dong Jae confronting Soo Ah over her lies, which obviously never happened. Adding this to the slew of little nods and hints we've been getting throughout the show... You've got to realize that there is no longer any additional work for the actor to do as long as the rest of the footage has been filmed. This ball probably lay in the editor's court, and this is where they chose to kick it. It's a frustrating situation.

Even when Hakyeon's been ass tired he always seems pretty pleased with himself between schedules and his band members literally never stop giving him shit. To have a complete reversal of his entire attitude in a matter of a couple of days for no reason whatsoever over something that all of the members of his band seem to be aware of and are actually publicly trying to cheer him up about, and seeing as how this is the only thing that has even remotely gone awry... I'm a fan, yes, but I like to think that I gather a lot of information and most of it is unbiased.

In the end, we may never know if things happened like this unless one of the actors lets us know. Hakyeon's fine now, thankfully, and he's definitely perked up since Monday. When it comes down to it that's what really matters.

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@saehee ~ It wasn't the Real King kids' fault, and I don't think Yeon Doo would sooo upset with them for doing that even if she promised, but it WAS the right for her to be upset with them because one, they exposed the evidence using her username, if I was her, I would be very quite upset too, if someone use my laptop to expose on someone. What the Real King was right, but exposing that evidence using Yeon Doo's username was the biggest mistake they did because Yeon Doo DID make a promise to Soo Ah, then it just got exposed under her name.

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This episode, oh la la!

I always thought Kim Yeol was responsible for the notes. He's the one with the cat and mouse mentality capable of pulling it off. It goes with the way his mind thinks and solves problems.

And Yeol's confession. ....squeal!!!!! There's something to be said for his honesty, it's soooo refreshing. Poor Ha Joon, he's headed for heartbreak, but he ought to have known that Yeol already liked Yeon Doo way before he got friendly with her and has first dibs. In Yeon doo's defense, she's NOT flirting with Ha joon, she's just being her normal, helpful, friendly self. She treats Ha joon the same way she treats Dong jae, her Real kingpals or even her teacher Yang: with friendly interest.

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yeah, you and @Miranda were right about Yeol being the blackmailer. And in retrospect he's the obvious choice for it - he has the most direct interest in finding out who stole the video AND in getting revenge for it, he has the resources to go to the security company for the video, and he's planted stuff in Soo-ah's bag before (ep 3, cigarettes). Fair play to you guys!

I loved Yeol's confession. I've been saying this from Day 1, it's just so great to have a hero who makes no secret at all of his feelings, because the flirting is just so enjoyable to watch. But while Yeon-doo registered it on a subconscious level/registered and then shoved it out of sight, out of mind and dismissed it as kim Yeol trolling her, and even reciprocates (that grin when they're on the phone together, that is not the expression one wears when talking to a boy one has no non-platonic feelings for)......Yeol isn't content to leave her interpretation up to chance any more, and removes all ambiguity from the situation (we saw him try to confess before, and Yeon-doo failed to register the meaning of what he was saying).

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I think she was more stunned than failed to register. I felt like she was rewinding the words in her head to make sure she heard him right. (I've done that). I also just loved how he laid out his confession; simple, straightforward and honest. *le sigh*

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when I said "failed to register", I was talking about all the previous times he tried to hint that he liked her without actually saying "I like you". Notably the banana milk confession of episode 6 :)

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Ah! Sorry for interpreting that incorrectly. It makes more sense now.

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And yeah, Yeon-doo isn't flirting with Ha-joon - she's behaving exactly the same way she would with any other friend, even in the scene where she tells Ha-joon that he's just a big softie inside and should listen to his own heart more. (and Ha-joon can't miss the huge, blinking Yeol/Yeon-doo signals all over the place - even the video Yeon-doo showed him to prove Yeol's innocence, involved her and Yeol being teased about their relationship by Hyo-shik)

Like people have mentioned before, Yeon-doo is a bit more of an innocent than Yeol when it comes to love, which is why who she likes is immediately apparent from her behaviour even if she doesn't yet realise it. And at the same time, she has so many friends and doesn't treat the guys any differently, so it doesn't occur to her that being alone with Ha-joon in a small enclosed space, or eating late-night jajangmyun together, means something in a romantic way/could be interpreted that way.

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I'm lolling when Yeol is whining about her excessive skinship with the boys, and i love how before she shot him down immediately, she unconciously explaining that it's a cheerleading practice, and she's always like that with the boys.. I dislike a unreasonable jealosy type but Yeol seems like a clueless puppy in here i just can't help squealling how cute he is.. Love how Yeon Doo being the awesome girl by saying after that she will do whatever she wants.. I can already see that it's Yeon Doo who's wearing a pant in their relationship.. Haha

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It makes me laugh because Yeol's panicking a little about being "official" - like, he's trying to find some way to get Yeon-Doo to signal they're a couple from her end. She's not the kind of girl to make him lunch or trail after him, to the point that even HE isn't sure she knows they're dating, so he's trying to think of something that will make it clear. His expression is so totally different in that scene too, he's not used to asking for favors (usually there's a threat underneath it) and he looks bewildered, it's hilarious. And then she just laughs at him - ha!

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@Miranda It's so cute when you put it that way. I am replaying the scene in my head. LOL.

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@Adal, the funniest thing is that it's totally his own fault: he's known as a playboy and a flirt, he's already hanging around her enough to have her Real King team members teasing them about being a couple (and he's reacting to that by telling them not to interrupt!), and now he has absolutely nowhere to go to publicly emphasize that this isn't just any girl he's flirting with, Yeon Doo is HIS girl.

It's not often that Yeol is in a position where he's played every last one of his cards and hasn't yet accomplished his goal - in fact, I'm not sure we've ever seen him at a loss. Which is why I'm so incredibly entertained that his next stage appears to be a slightly pouty, worried attempt to get Yeon Doo to close the distance. He has no one to blame but himself, and now it's all in her hands!

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I agree Yeon Doo is not flirting. Or rather she has no idea that the way she acts could be construed by someone interested in her as flirting. Which is why until ep 10 I was slightly concerned about how Yeon Doo felt about Yeol and Ha Joon. Because I think her general cluelessness could have made the situation go either way.

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You know, it's possible that Yeol has always been a massive flirt, to the extent that not even Ha Joon realized that this time it means something. Hasn't Yeol got a playboy reputation? And we've seen he doesn't back down when called on his flirting...

Ha Joon isn't the most perceptive guy when it comes to other people, I think it's possible that he knows Yeol finds Yeon Doo interesting and loves to tease her, but hasn't quite connected the dots that Yeol is INTERESTED in her. Not that I think it'll make a huge difference in the long run; Ha Joon isn't going to mess with Yeol's girl. Yeol is the only person Ha Joon can 100% count on in life, and he's been his only ally for decades. Might as well ask Ha Joon to remove one of his own kidneys.

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yeah, Da-mi in episode 4 (and the kid is quite the flirt herself, look at her drawing a heart right on Grumptopus' face!) said Yeol had a rep as a player.

Interestingly, in the actual drama itself Yeol's never actually turned the flirt on anyone but Yeon-doo - there are three girls in Baek-ho but there's not so much as a flicker of interest between Yeol and any of them (even if you remove Soo-ah from the equation because they hate each other's guts). Which points to Yeol earning that rep before the drama began, or perhaps even in middle school and toning it down in high school.

Still, that piece of background information is the only way it makes sense for Ha-joon to have missed all the huge, blinking red flags from Yeol indicating 'INTERESTED HERE' when it came to Yeon-doo. Or at least, how he shoved the early signals out of mind once Yeon-doo became a friend to both of them.

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ah! just saw this comment. totally didn't realize he was known to be a flirt, i thought that this was only directed to YD. I always thought that even before ep 1, Yeol had a slight interest in YD. They def crossed paths before the whole showdown between BH and RK, .

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@maple ~ He probably DO had a slight interest in YD even before episode 1, and yes, they've crossed paths before the whole showdown between RK and BH, because remember, in the beginning of episode 1, YD was in her first year, then when Da Mi and Kyung Eun joined, she's in the second year already. So, of course, that means YD and KY crossed paths before the showdown between two clubs, and I bet SA was Yeon Doo's friend once they both entered the school on their first year.

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@Miranda, I didn't realize Yeol was labeled as a playboy/flirt. Where was this in the episodes? I must have totally missed this???

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It's in episode 4 during the time Instructor Nam makes the kids get to know each other. Dami asks Yeol if he was dating anyone because he is known to be a flirt.

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This episode was crazy. Especially the ending. From the basis of this alone, it's so hard to see Soo Ah redeem herself. And she really does need psychological help, it's obvious she can't deal with it on her own and her mum pushing her is just honestly so upsetting. Her mum doesn't even realise the effect she's having on her own daughter.

ALSO what on EARTH are they going to do with the parents? The drama is doing so well, I really don't see where theyre going with that plot.

Unless they do something really dumb like, push Yeon Doo and Ha Joon together bcs their parents make KYxYD a forbidden relationship (I seriously doubt that but imagine!!)

Also another plothole I see is, what are they going to do with HaJoon and the abuse from his father? Are they just going to ignore that? It's as if the love triangle became more important.

But honestly, I LOVE this drama. I really enjoy it and it's just so great. I actually got my little brother and sis to start on ep 1 juat now and they love it.

Who doesnt love Kim Yeol's million pound smile? :')

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As soon as they were introduced I felt like the dad would be making the ultimate sacrifice for his son and not marry Yeon doo's mom. Then Kim yeol would see how much dad cares and reconcile, etc. Agree about ha joon and his dad though. Maybe if this were 16 episodes they'd touch on it more.

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agree with this comment!

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Your interpretation is correct hahah His dad sacrificed the marriage for his son's happiness, and from that, Yeol changed his mind and let his father and Yeon Doo's mom love each other again, but of course, he and YD are NOT giving up on their relationship with each other also. He really cannot lose Yeon Doo in his life, just as much as he doesn't want to lose Ha Joon too haha It's now confirm that not only Ha Joon who is the most important to him, but also Yeon Doo as the most important person to him as well hahah But these three will surely not leaving each other's side like at all, like how when Yeol was being accused, it was only YD and HJ who were there by his side and helped him, and when HJ's not there with them, it's YD (again) and KY who were the only ones went helping him out of his trap in his room. Basically, I would say these three are each other's soulmates, just that Yeon Doo's late in their orbits haha

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Also, its like they've been giving space for us to feel sympathy towards Soo Ah by maintaining some sort of humanity on her behalf. But she went too far. I can see them using mental illness as a front to feel sprry for her and I can see it working. On the basis of how that ended, there's no way she's okay.

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Something definitely snapped inside her. I feel like we just watched her slam into a brick wall of reality as to how far she will go to keep from owning up to her own actions even when she knows deep, deep, netherworld deep down how wrong she was.

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Quick note - we've had an incredible bromance between Yeol and Ha-joon, but can I also note the fantastic chemistry between our main two girls?

Things positively crackle every time Jung Eun-ji and Chae Soo-bin share the screen, even if they hate each other and Soo-ah is being maddening I can't take my eyes off them. (kudos to both actresses for that and for their own performances - Eunji is just so effortless here in every way, investing what could be a standard bland Candy-do-gooder with heart and vitality and making it so easy to get why everyone including Crinkles and Grumpuppy, is in love with her. And Chae Soo-bin is amazing too, for such a new actress she has an incredibly natural way of portraying even the most intense scenes).

And I literally had an intake of breath at the moment when Soo-ah grabbed Yeon-doo's collar. There's an intensity to that scene which is entirely from the two actresses - it's even more intense than Yeol grabbing and yelling at Soo-ah at the start of the ep, and it feels like Yeon-doo and Soo-ah's personal history just makes this even MORE than that scene.

(back later with more thoughts about CONFESSION! And Grumpuppy, and all the other stuff)

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Totally agree with both ladies acting! Excellent!

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they have crazy chemistry in their confrontations, so much so that i actually enjoy watching them yell at each other because they bounce off each other so well. chae soo-bin is doing a great job with her character; she portrays soo-ah in a way that makes her desperation feel real and palpable, despite the viciousness of her actions.

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I know, right?! It's so rare to see that happen between two actresses, because usually the lead/second lead end up with their conflict being about a romantic attachment. This is the first drama in years where the girls' fight is just about THEM.

And they really do bounce off each other so well. I feel like the shreds of their former relationship and its effect on both Yeon-doo and Soo-ah, make it even more compelling.

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Totally amazing chemistry between girls that is rarely seen!

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CSB is so so amazing.. The last confrontation, you can feel her desperation and disappointment because she actually trust Yeon Doo is a never a betrayer at first place.. She's greeting her teeth and her is shaken.. The tension in that scene is just something.. I think CSB's charm is one of the reason i can't truly hate Soo Ah.. I do hate Soo Ah so much, but she got this vibe then make her looks pitiful when she's showing her vulnurable side..

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I cannot believe Chae Soo-bin only made her movie/drama debut last year, she's better at this than many actresses who have years of age and experience on her. Makes me wonder if she had years of stage experience pre-drama, like Ji-soo.

And yeah, she absolutely makes Soo-ah - the character does hateful things but CSB is the one who makes Soo-ah's warring emotions and slowly cracking facade so compelling to watch. I really do hope she does more acting work, talent like hers shouldn't be wasted.

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hey, why'd my earlier comment go into moderation? :( I'll just have to copy-paste into a later comment tagged to this one, I suppose :/

I pretty much squealed to high heaven at the confession (and also at the bit where all three were out walking in split screen - it's so obvious from the smile on Yeon-doo's face just which one of them she saw first :). I love that Yeol has always been direct about his interest in Yeon-doo (all that flirting!), but has escalated the directness now to a point that leaves her zero room to dismiss it as trolling or misinterpret - a direct confession!

and I love how the jealousy has been escalating - at first in ep 3, he doesn't get jealous about Dong-jae being so close to her, only registers it, and in ep 6 we see him similarly 'register' Yeon-doo being alone with Ha-joon without actually getting jealous, while also presenting Yeon-doo with the banana milk, followed by the big pouty 'what's with the strawberry milk?!' to Ha-joon in ep 8 (a scene that is epic in its own right for what it says about the two boys).....but as his feelings grow deeper, so does the jealousy.

And I love that he doesn't take it out on any of the other boys but goes straight to Yeon-doo with it. (no Kim Tan behaviour, here!) And I almost died at his pouty aegyo face trying to order her not to be around the other guys so much any more - but I LOVE that Yeon-doo is basically 'lol no' about it and just leaves him hanging. You go girl!

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I didn't register the progression of jealousy as pin pointed as you did, but you are absolutely right!

One of the things I love about this show is that there is communication and understanding between our 2 main leads. I especially like that Yeon Doo doesn't just go along with what Yeol is comfortable with! No, she laughs and tells him to deal with it. Yes! This should also help with his trust issues if he can let her be who she is and trust that she will remain true to him no matter how she acts with other guys.

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You know, I hadn't even thought of how Yeol's trust-no-one attitude of years plays into that adorably pouty scene but that is a genius connection to make. I love the idea that Yeon-doo is pretty much setting him on the road to getting over it, just by being herself.

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Agree with all, especially the pouty aegyo face being a killer! I've rewatched that part at least 10 times :D

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His aegyo face when he says 'now let's talk about us', HE IS SO CUTE.

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Kim Yeol and Ha Joon make the best pouty faces!! I've never appreciated how adorable a pout could be until them.

Kim Yeol is just so honest and open about his feelings to Yeon-doo. That's some serious foundation to build a relationship on.

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yeah, I can't believe this pair of teenagers has a more balanced and mature relationship than half the supposed adults of kdramaland.

The pouty faces just KILL ME. (and on a side note, so does Hyo-shik's face when he finds that USB drive with the incriminating video - he SO thought it was p*rn!)

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Can I gush over how awesome Kim Yeol is? I love his honest confession. And it isn't through some forced kiss or anything but normal conversation. He respects her a lot, he listens to her, he is honest with her, he trusts her, and he worries about her. That is the kind of boyfriend media should be selling (instead of the bad boy I'm gonna treat the girl badly because I have the emotional maturity of a 10 year old type).
Likewise I really really like Yeon-doo too! Can I have her a friend? I love how she is realistically reaching her limit but at the same time, she takes time to understand another person's position.

I know a lot of people are against Soo-ah but I do understand her a bit. Understanding is NOT the same as pardoning her actions but I want her to get the help and support she needs. I can relate to the feeling of something going wrong and having nowhere to turn, and a bad cycle starting that just spins out of your control. She's locked in her mind and I think her feeling of entrapment is something I can empathize with.

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I know, right?! I love that Yeol isn't some perfect prince - the sticky notes and cigarettes plot do show he can be sneaky and well capable of waging psychological war. But as the main love interest, he's just awesome.

I love that at every point in this drama, he has TALKED to Yeon-doo about the important stuff, starting from the reason behind why he needed her to agree to the cheerleading, to his growing interest in her. Even the one time he did try to kiss her, he gave her a verbal heads-up first i.e. a chance to back away if she wanted. He's so openly smitten with her, it's adorable and amusing and just every kind of lovely. And I love that he doesn't force anything, but actually makes it clear beyond a shadow of a doubt that he likes her.... and leaves the ball in her court. (and his pouty face when he tells her she can't touch anyone but him, awwwww)

I agree about Soo-ah. I don't excuse any of her actions, but she's been gradually coming unhinged for so long, and is under so much pressure that I can see how she's been programmed to let her desire for her mother's approval override her better instincts as a human. One of the past recaps mentioned that she had the intellect of an adult but the emotional intelligence of a child, and that she failed to think in terms of long-term consequences. And this episode calls on that analogy, especially in the scene where Soo-ah is curled up almost in foetal position on the chair in her advisor's office as she tries to get around the situation.

And her mother is a piece of work, trying to raise her as a walking spec list and not a daughter - I think dismissing just how toxic that relationship and its effects on Soo-ah are, is dismissing the problem.

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Soo Ah'a mom appears to be souless. Seeing her child as nothing but a chessboard piece. Does Soo Ah even have dreams of her own?

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no, she doesn't.

Her dream is literally to win her mother's approval, and the only way she can do that is by being #1 and getting into an Ivy League school. Which is so sad when you think about it.....what kind of parent withholds affection from their child until the child 'earns' it with achievement?

One thing I have noticed about great villains is that they are ten times more terrifying when they are in any way sympathetic or human in the reasons for their actions. (see: Loki, Shakespeare's Shylock, Min Joo-gook of I Hear Your Voice) and Soo-ah definitely fits that pattern. Definitely one of the great villains of the year!

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and oh yeah, seconded on Yeon-doo too. (I am practically spamming the comments now, sorry). It's great the way this episode was handled, from her end - her reluctance to see Soo-ah publicly humiliated is very much in character for her, but I love that she let Soo-ah know she wasn't going to put up with her crap any more and that she was risking public humiliation if she didn't own up to the theft. I loved the entire confrontation at the camp after Yeon-doo's return, because this is a Yeon-doo who's finally decided to give as good as she gets while still giving Soo-ah that one last chance.

And like LollyPip says, one of the best things about that scene is not only getting to see Yeol and Yeon-doo put up a united front against Soo-ah, but also the fact that Yeol steps back and lets Yeon-doo do the talking once she arrives on the scene - he knows this is between her and Soo-ah, and he respects that.

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This was scene that ticked me off! I really wished that she had been confronted in front of the team and that Yeon Doo would stop enabling her to get away with her behavior.

I never realized until the the recap that Yeol was putting up a united front with Yeon Do. It adds an extra layer to them and makes me glad I come to DramaBeans.

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It's also that Yeon Doo doesn't want to stoop to Soo Ah's level and become the kind of person that Soo Ah is. Like she says to SA in ep 3 or 4, at least live as if you're human.

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You are so damn right! It really feels like it's been a while we get a verbally confession in kdrama because they like to skip it to stunned kiss, forced kiss, etc just to show that he likes her.. So it feels so freakin refreshing to get Yeol's confession like this, it just with only 3 words, i like you.. So simple, yet so deep, and definitely sooo swoon-worthy.. Yeol's direct-ness and honesty is very attractive.. And I really love how this couple is having such a healthy relationship because they always talk about everthing..
And they already acting like a couple.. When he's whining about the skinship and she just like, nope, you have to deal with that.. Too cute! I just can't with these two..

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Is it bloodthirsty that I really really want something bad to happen to Soo Ah? I don't want her to die or physically get hurt. . . but if she realizes that she did bad things, apologizes and gets forgiven with no consequences, I'm going to be SO FRUSTRATED!

I get it - her mom sucks. I don't care. Yes, I feel bad for her, but I don't think it excuses her behavior. I know the reviewer likes that there are possibly glimpses of humanity in her. . . but for me, I feel like that's almost worse. Like she knows what she's doing is wrong. . . and then does them anyway. That whole fake crying scene so she could get time to do something sneaky? Sociopathic.

In the preview for ep. 10, it kind of seems like she's going to attempt suicide? Like I said, I don't think her crimes are bad enough for death, but you know she's not going to die anyway. This show has been good for me so far, so I hope it doesn't go the cliche route of "she tried to commit suicide so she must feel bad, let's forgive and forget."

Arghh she frustrates me so much. And yet, I really like her hair. It's always perfect. I can't decide if that makes me like or dislike her more.

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I dont think you should watch episode 10... Just a heads up, I nearly shot myself as to how they "redeemed" SooAh. But more on that when ep 10 recap comes out.

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I dread it so much. I feel like it's definitely going to be something to rant about, so I better wait a day to watch. Haha I hate needing to rant and having nowhere to do it!

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