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Legend of the Blue Sea: Episode 4

I find this show a nice breath of fresh air, and often laugh-out-loud funny. Perhaps the You From Another Star connection has dulled the shine a bit so that this show doesn’t feel as fresh as that one did at the time, but I’m loving the brightness, the characters, and the undercurrent of sentimentality (particularly in the Joseon storyline, which is lovely).

 

 
EPISODE 4 RECAP

Joseon. Late at night, someone walks along the beach. In the morning, mayor Dam-ryung receives the curious report of a thief taking clothing and shoes from nearby houses and leaving behind a pearl in their place. Dam-ryung furrows his brow.

A gisaeng hears the same report and sighs enviously, wishing that the visitor would leave her pearls. Lord Yang says that the reason he’s so busy trying to catch the mermaid is so that he can take all her tears and lavish pearls on the gisaeng. (As the lore goes, mermaid tears turn into pearls.)

The gisaeng asks how he means to catch the mermaid, and Lord Yang replies that she’ll come to the village of her own accord. His underling confirms that the mermaid is the one leaving pearls in place of the clothes and food she takes: “A mermaid who falls in love with a human will surely come to land. That is their instinct.”

Mermaid Se-hwa, now dressed in hanbok, walks through the town and watches villagers shake persimmons down from a tree with a stick. She picks up one that’s fallen in the street, thinking back to her youth, when young Dam-ryung had given her a persimmon for the first time.

“A mermaid, who can only love once in her life, will risk that life for that love,” the underling says. Lord Yang notes that this mermaid’s once-in-a-lifetime love is his once-in-a-lifetime chance to catch her.

He instructs his man to catch the mermaid before the mayor does, and tells his gisaeng to spread rumors blaming the mermaid for the storm that ruined their homes and fishing boats. They’ll say that the mermaid has assumed the guise of a person and hidden herself in the village, and that if she isn’t stopped, a bigger storm will come to destroy their livelihoods.

Lord Yang cackles that fear is the best way to make people lose their reason, and if everything goes well, they may even be able to kill the mayor along with the mermaid.

It doesn’t take much to set the people off, and they work themselves into a frenzy demanding that the mayor catch and kill the mermaid.

Against the protest of his sidekick, Dam-ryung sets out to find Se-hwa, saying that he’d asked her to come to him when it turned cold, so they could be together at the first snowfall. (In keeping with the notion of experiencing the first snow with the one you love.)

Just then, snow starts to fall, and Dam-ryung reaches out a hand to catch a snowflake. Not far away, so does Se-hwa.

Dam-ryung says that if she truly came to land, she has risked her life: “What can’t I risk?” He sets out immediately, riding furiously.

Se-hwa senses someone approaching as she walks along a mountain path—but when she turns, it’s not Dam-ryung there but three menacing swordsmen. They’ve been sent by Lord Yang, who’d ordered them to target the mermaid’s legs, her biggest weakness.

Advancing, they Se-hwa falling to the ground and encircle her. One raises his sword to strike her legs—but then, he’s struck in the chest with an arrow.

Dam-ryung charges into the fray, driving them back. He stands guard over Se-hwa, shining heroically in the sunlight.

Seoul, present day. Escaped murderer Dae-young (Lord Yang’s modern-day doppelganger) is still on the loose, keeping a low profile.

Rich housewife Jin-joo (Shi-ah’s sister-in-law) chides the housekeeper, Joon-jae’s mother, over the way she’s packed a container of crab. I love how Joon-jae’s mother is curiously bold to her employers, and just tells Jin-joo to carry the box properly. Jin-joo backs down, then wonders why.

Jin-joo sends the crab over to Chairman Heo’s family, seeking to score a few brownie points. Chairman Heo is Joon-jae’s father, and the family consists of his second wife and his other son, HEO CHI-HYUN (Lee Ji-hoon). Gossip says Chi-hyun is her son but not his, making him Joon-jae’s half-brother by law, but not blood.

The chairman’s wife informs him that Jin-joo is angling to set up Chi-hyun with Shi-ah. When asked his opinion, Chi-hyun says he’s happy doing whatever pleases his parents, and they chuckle over his reputation as a papa’s boy.

Then the chairman takes a bite of the crab and recognizes the taste, which triggers a memory of eating this dish with his first family. Joon-jae’s mother had teased him about his plans to become a chaebol, and he’d promised to shower her in luxury.

Coming back to the present, Chairman Heo tells his son to eat up, apparently unaware that Chi-hyun is allergic to shellfish. His wife says that Jin-joo’s new housekeeper must be good, but that just makes the chairman even more preoccupied.

Later, the chairman asks his driver-aide about Joon-jae’s current whereabouts. The aide says that it’s been difficult finding his new address and suggests that Chairman Heo reconcile with Joon-jae. The chairman replies that Joon-jae is his only blood relative, and that he intends to find him. He asks his aide to locate Joon-jae.

What Chairman Heo doesn’t realize is that his car is bugged, and that his wife is listening in, looking mighty unhappy.

She puts in a call to fugitive Dae-young and informs him that since today is Joon-jae’s birthday, he’ll be showing up “there.” She orders him to find out where Joon-jae lives, then get rid of him.

So Dae-young shows up at the aquarium, just missing Joon-jae as he runs back inside after realizing that his mystery girl from Spain is the mermaid in the tank. They stop in their tracks at the sight of each other.

Joon-jae approaches to ask if she knows him, while she just stares with tear-filled eyes.

Aquarium employees run in and ask Joon-jae to grab her before she flees. Joon-jae quickly pulls out a police ID from his stack of fakes and introduces himself as the officer responding to this call, and escorts the mermaid away. She looks so happy about it that the employee wonders for a second whether she’s truly a captive.

At a safe distance, Joon-jae tells the mermaid that he didn’t do this to save her, but because he has questions. Showing her the picture on his phone of them in Spain, he asks why they were together. Not understanding the concept of a photograph, she asks, “How is Heo Joon-jae with me in there?”

That’s another surprise, since he rarely gives out his name. He’s certain that she knows him, but he can’t understand why he doesn’t know her.

He asks for her name, and she says she doesn’t have one. She offers that while she’s nameless, she’s not a strange person; she’s using his own words, and says that a “good person” told her that. Joon-jae scoffs that whoever said that was probably a strange person too.

Just then, two police officers walk by. Acting friendly to deflect suspicion, he grabs her hand, then starts running. She follows willingly, recalling how they ran on the beach together in Spain.

Once outside, he drops her hand and asks what happened in Spain, and if there was an accident he can’t remember. She remains silent, and in exasperation, he figures that if she has nothing to say, they have no reason to be together.

He walks away, and when she continues to follow, he asks again if she has anything to say. She doesn’t, so he leaves again, and this time she gets separated from him by traffic and loses sight of him.

She hurries to catch up and comes to the park by the river, scanning the crowd anxiously… and comes face to face with Cha Tae-hyun (hee!). After sizing her up for a moment, he tells her never to alter her nose, explaining that it is blocking tons of bad luck for her. However, because she is so deficient in ancestral luck, her ancestors must be weeping in the ground.

She doesn’t know what ancestors are, and when he explains, she replies that they wouldn’t be in the ground, but in the water. Con artist Cha Tae-hyun rolls with it and says that even if their ashes were scattered over the sea, they’re still crying.

She asks why, and that’s his cue to launch into his whole con artist spiel about descendants needing to put in effort to honor their ancestors, yada yada yada. I love his little comedic one-man show as he tries to engage her interest, even as she gets bored and her attention wanders.

When he fails, he sighs that she’s quite bizarre (using the word in the title of their classic film, My Sassy Girl). Still, he ushers her away to continue the con, and she goes along with him.

That’s when Joon-jae steps into their path, and she lights up. Joon-jae tells the con man that he’s his ancestor, here to step in lest his descendant turn the world into trash.

Cha Tae-hyun starts to get peevish, but Joon-jae deflects him with a swift shove and ends up with his wallet. Cha Tae-hyun threatens to report him for pickpocketing, but chickens out of the bluff and meekly asks for his wallet back.

As they walk away, the mermaid keeps one hand pinching Joon-jae’s jacket and he warns her not to follow guys like that, who’d scam her with false promises. Then he spies skateboarders zooming near and whirls her out of their path, which puts a moony look on her face and unnerves Joon-jae.

He steps aside to take a call just as the fireworks show begins, and the mermaid reacts to the loud bang instinctively, throwing herself on top of Joon-jae. She topples him to the ground, covering his body protectively with hers: “It’s a gun!”

He protests that it’s not a gun, but she insists, “Be still, Joon-jae! I’ll protect you!”

He works himself free and directs her attention to the light show above. Joon-jae tells her firmly that protecting someone else comes after protecting oneself first: “That’s the proper order. Changing that order is something fools do.”

The mermaid is transfixed by the fireworks, and he asks if she’s never seen fireworks before. That reminds her of Joon-jae describing them when they were in Spain—and how he’d promised to take her to see them with him.

Joon-jae explains that you don’t touch them, and when she sees everyone taking pictures on their phones, she asks what they’re doing. She doesn’t know what taking a “photo” is, so he pulls out his phone to show her how.

The mermaid asks why he isn’t taking pictures like everyone else, and he replies, “Because I can just remember.” She smiles and places his hand over his heart, saying, “You’re taking pictures in here.”

Joon-jae flashes back to watching the fireworks as a child, and how his mother had told him that beautiful things disappear. She’d told him to look with his eyes, and remember in his heart. The memory throws him for a moment.

Joon-jae’s mother watches the fireworks on the news, and even orders her employer Dong-shik not to change the channel. Dong-shik actually thanks her when she lets him switch, and admits to his wife Jin-joo that it’s strange how he ends up doing whatever the housekeeper tells him.

Per his orders, hit man Dae-young keeps his eye on Joon-jae, reporting to his employer (Joon-jae’s stepmother) that he’s been with a girl all day. He asks how Stepmom knew he’d be at the aquarium.

Stepmom replies that Joon-jae has done it since childhood, and a flashback to his childhood shows Joon-jae attempting to leave the house to meet his mother on his birthday. Stepmom tells him coldly that Dad paid Mom off to never see him again, and that she likes money more than her son.

Then Chairman Heo had come home and gotten angry to hear Joon-jae tried to see his mother. Stepmom put on a show of kindness in front of her husband, while smirking behind his back.

Now, Stepmom tells Dae-young that she didn’t work this hard to have her husband leave everything to his biological son.

Joon-jae tries to send the mermaid away again, but she asks to go home with him. He asks what her parents would think of her going home with a man, then feels bad when she says she has no parents. He gives her another chance to ‘fess up about their prior connection, but she keeps her mouth shut.

Joon-jae writes his number on her palm, telling her to call once she’s ready to talk. He drives away, shaking off his guilt as he sees her in his rearview mirror.

That’s Dae-young’s chance to approach from behind, but he stops when Joon-jae brakes his car. The next thing we know, she’s sitting in his car, tilting her face out the window and telling him that she likes being in Seoul. He looks over at her, and is hit with a memory of driving in Spain.

She smiles, adding, “I like being with you.” Another memory flashes through his brain—of waking up on the beach and hearing a whispered “I love you.”

Joon-jae tries to get her to say it to compare her voice, but can’t actually bring himself to say “I love you” to prompt her to say it.

It’s then that he spots the car tailing him in his mirror, and he starts weaving through traffic to lose him. Dae-young remains close behind as he turns onto a small side street, but loses track of the car in the neighborhood and screams in frustration.

Meanwhile, Shi-ah is back in her lab, looking at the vase depicting a mermaid kissing a man. It dates to the Joseon era, but the man is clearly modern-day, and her colleagues joke about a Joseon artist taking a ride in a time machine. Shi-ah says that it has a similar feel to someone she knows.

Joon-jae brings the mermaid home, to the shock of his con artist buddies. They gape as she beelines for the small pool, then asks disappointedly if there’s nothing to eat in it.

She gets pasta instead of pool fish, and as she eats, Nam-doo shoots “Are you crazy?” looks at Joon-jae. He asks where the mermaid lives, and she replies, “Far.” Nam-doo says he lives far away too, and she returns, “Mine’s reaaaaaaaally far.”

Nam-doo declares her personality the type that can’t lose and says she doesn’t suit him, as though he’s got roommate veto rights. Joon-jae reminds his partners that they’re mooching off him and orders them to leave, and Nam-doo accuses Joon-jae of wanting private time with the girl.

Joon-jae insists he’s only keeping her until he can confirm something, and takes out the jade bracelet. He asks if she knows it, and she confirms that it was hers, but she gave it to him. That makes Nam-doo happy, since he was afraid Joon-jae would do something stupid like return it.

Nam-doo calls her quite generous, and the mermaid replies airily, “There are lots of things like that at my house.” A flashback shows the mermaid rifling through her chest of precious vases and tossing them carelessly, heh.

Suddenly Nam-doo’s all in favor of keeping her around and promises to help her while she’s in Seoul, suggesting that she thank him once she’s back home.

Nam-doo asks for her name, and she replies that she doesn’t have one. Moreover, she asks why everyone asks her that, and why it’s important. Nam-doo says that you need to have a name in order to be called.

She asks Joon-jae if he’d call her by name, and he supposes he would. She immediately asks him to make her one, and Nam-doo proposes Audrey, as in Hepburn, finding her similar to the Roman Holiday character.

Joon-jae tosses out, “Just be Shim Chung.” (Shim Chung is the heroine of a famous folktale about a daughter so pious she threw herself into the sea to help cure her father’s blindness, only to be saved by the sea god.) But he jokes that he means shim chung as a shortened way of saying “really really stupid.”

It’s a mean joke and Nam-doo calls him on it, but to their shock, the mermaid loves it. Excited to have a name, she bounces over to Tae-oh to ask his name and introduces herself as Shim Chung.

Shi-ah shows up at the door with a birthday cake, and Chung senses a rival and shoots her a glare. When a self-cleaning vacuum rolls into her foot, Chung freaks out and jumps into Joon-jae’s arms, which displeases Shi-ah and makes the boys die laughing.

Then it’s time to cut the cake, and Joon-jae has to literally stop Chung from diving in face-first. She barely contains her excitement like a puppy ordered to wait for a treat, blows out the candles before they’ve sung the song, and sticks a hand straight into the cake.

Joon-jae initially rejects Shi-ah’s offer of cake, but reluctantly takes it when Nam-doo tells him to be nice. Chung clocks the exchange, eyes darkening when she sees Shi-ah whispering into Joon-jae’s ear. She eyes Shi-ah’s dainty mannerisms and tries to mimic her, taking tiny bites and dabbing at her mouth with a tissue, and takes note of Shi-ah’s jewelry and feminine gestures.

Shi-ah yanks Nam-doo aside to ask peevishly if they really mean to keep Chung around. Nam-doo explains it as an act of pity on Joon-jae’s part, assuring Shi-ah not to worry, since the girl is clearly addled and doesn’t even know her own name. Shi-ah orders Nam-doo to stick around, which makes me wonder again what their agreement is.

Joon-jae shows Chung to her room, which is a loft attached to his own bedroom, and says she’ll only be staying for a few days while he confirms something. She excitedly bounces on the mattress, settling down only after he yells at her from his room below.

Hit man Dae-young lurks in the street, knowing that Joon-jae must be nearby. Spying Namsan Tower off in the distance seems to give him an idea.

In the morning, Chung bolts awake, driven by the thought of breakfast, and wakes Joon-jae up. When the talking rice cooker announces that it’s starting, she urges it to hurry.

Dae-young poses as a salesman to go door to door, and marks X’s on the doors that don’t belong to Joon-jae. He misses seeing Joon-jae drive by, but does get the attention of a loan shark who’s unhappy about being woken up and sees him marking his door. The man starts to make a call to report him, but Dae-young’s face takes on a creepy calmness…

Joon-jae drops by the mall, where the sight of a woman modeling clothing for her boyfriend triggers another memory of himself in Spain. He can’t remember why he went to that store or why he was looking at women’s shoes, and tells himself he must have hit his head when he fell.

While waiting for an elevator, he’s struck with the memory of a similar instance in Spain. More memories fly through his mind as he drives home, like the luxurious hotel and the bicycle chase and the fall into the sea. But in his memories, he’s all alone.

As he nears his house, Nam-doo calls and warns him to pull over, then sidles up to the car to point out the police checkpoint nearby. There’s been a murder at their neighbor’s house—and moreover, one of the cops, Detective Hong, has been trying to catch Joon-jae for years. Detective Hong, meanwhile, smells the work of Dae-young, since his signature weapon is a hammer.

Joon-jae worries about Chung being home alone, but Nam-doo tells him it’s more important to escape right now.

At home, Chung gets sucked into a TV drama, which is a hilariously dramatic show called My Mother-in-Law’s Man that ends on the line, “Your father is really…!” Chung doesn’t understand why the people freeze onscreen, wondering if they died.

A man in a police jacket breaks away from the crew and makes his way to Joon-jae’s front gate. Chung perks up at the doorbell, thinking it might be Joon-jae, and opens the gate, where she comes face to face with Dae-young.

In his car, Joon-jae wrestles with his dilemma, thinking of the rule he gave to Chung, that the smart thing is to protect oneself before others. He makes up his mind, muttering about opting for foolish instead, and drives forward, heading right for the police checkpoint.

Epilogue.

Joseon. Ha, now Joon-jae’s mother is the lady of the house, and Jin-joo is her slave (she has a different name, but for convenience’s sake, let’s call her Jin-joo). Mom orders Jin-joo to tend to uncover single one of the clay pots outside, and Jin-joo complies, only to have her mistress decide that they ought to cover them for possible rain.

Jin-joo’s (current-day) husband Dong-shik, also a slave, offers to help, only to be told that he has a task of his own: to travel aaaaalllll the way to a nobleman’s house to deliver a letter regarding Dam-ryung’s marriage talks.

Jin-joo cries to Dong-shik, saying that the mistress is trying to tear them apart. She hopes they’ll be married in their next life, and he vows to be born rich. He asks what she’d like to be reborn as, and Jin-joo glares at her mistress and replies, “Her master.”

 
COMMENTS

Okay, that epilogue did make me laugh, and I like that it’s not pure throwaway in terms of plot—the show has linked the Joseon lifetime to the present day in multiple ways, and I like that there’s a sense of purpose in paralleling the two arcs, even if we haven’t peeled back enough layers yet to see what exactly that purpose is.

The more I see of the Joseon storyline, the more I’m drawn to it—it supplies a gravity and seriousness to the relationship that we haven’t had a chance to build yet in the present. I find this level of connection just right for me: that Dam-ryung and Se-hwa are distinct people apart from their Seoul counterparts, so that I don’t feel like the hand of fate is overpowering or robs anybody of agency. It’s a lighter touch than that, giving their connection a little extra depth without feeling too dramatic. For instance, they both gave names to their mermaids, but the reasons were entirely different; one was being sweet, and the other was kind of being an ass. One mermaid is dignified and regal, while the other… well let’s just say that sometimes it feels generous to say she’s only missing a few marbles.

I find the presence of that old vase (the one Shi-ah restored) an interesting point, which I would probably find extraneous if I hadn’t caught the director’s cut when it aired over the weekend. That version didn’t substantially alter the storyline or my understanding of it, and many of the cut scenes would have been informative but weren’t strictly necessary, but there was one bit I wished had stayed in. It’s a scene in the first episode where Dam-ryung explains to his friend how, after his encounter with the mermaid, he’d been beset by recurring dreams where a man that looked just like himself lived in a world with tall buildings and different terrain. So I wonder whether Dam-ryung drew that picture on the vase, and if it was prompted by his own visions about his future life.

I know it may seem unnecessary for the mermaid to have wiped Joon-jae’s memory when she sought him out anyway, but I thought it was fairly reasonable rationale: She had to send them into the water to save them from the guns, he inevitably saw her mermaid tail, ergo amnesia kiss. But as this episode informed us, a mermaid can only love once, and that love will spur her on an instinctual level to risk her life to come to land to reunite with her man.

It turns out that I’m grateful for that, because I found myself really loving the echoes of their first encounters in the present ones. Joon-jae may not remember Chung, but he reacts in all the same ways—initial gruffness and outward frustration, but he will always come back for her. Always. And that’s touching in a way that mirrors the whole Joseon parallel, where these people have free will, but because of the basic truths about their natures, history will repeat itself in similar patterns.

I just really hope that either (1) that Joseon storyline ends well, or (2) if it turns out to be as bittersweet as it feels now, that it’ll be the one point where our modern lovers can find a better solution to be together. Not that I’m seriously worried about a sad ending—I’m pretty sure fans would revolt if it ended unhappily. Plus, you can’t make a story that absurdly funny and then kill it off in the end, you just can’t. It’s a dramaland rule!

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I love that attic bedroom!!!

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Me too! I want that! I could stay there forever surrounded by books, painting materials, and my laptop. It's just super cozy!

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When Cha Tae Hyun came into the scene and he started talking to her, In my mind, if at all possible they can just go on and on and run off together, coz there's chemistry there. This show is good, fun at times if you would just forget that My Love from the Stars, the leads complement each other in looks but why do I feel like there is something missing? LMH's sidekicks are not that entertaining.
It lacks Oomph.
Like you've just eaten a full meal but still feels hungry.

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I agree with you on that. Everything should be awesome because of the charisma and caliber of the actor and actress, but, yes, something is lacking. I was even thinking that maybe if the writers switch the roles of affection: LMH is the ones secretly in love the with our lead actress and her acting cold towards him, maybe their would be more oomph! While we the viewers wait with bated breath if she falls for him too? I don't know, just a thought.

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There are so many beautiful things in this drama. From rooms to even fields. I wish I had that room also.=)
Love the recaps and comments. =)

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Me three! I was pretty much jaw-dropped when I saw how big it is. I would LOVE to have a tour around Joon-jae's house (bat-cave included); the design seems really impressive.

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I love it too! The only problem is there doesn't seem to be a bathroom there. Would be a pain to have to climb the stairs every time!

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“A mermaid, who can only love once in her life, will risk that life for that love.”
T.T

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That's why I feel sorry for her. She seems so genuinely into him that it breaks my heart that he doesn't even have a memory of her.

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He may not have a memory of her...yet his subconscious won't let him forget or just accept the faint memories. Furthermore, his determination to figure out the profound truth about his past interactions with her - he feels a deeper emotional pull - a loving heart that just can't turn/walk away in the face of danger.

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He can't remember her but it seems that he can remember love at a heart level.

Maybe it's meant to parallel the scene where he was taught to remember fireworks (or, things that are happy, good and beautiful) deep in his heart. Or maybe it's just that she can erase memories in the mind but not memories in the heart.

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Oh, I like this notion, Gidget.

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Very good theory Gidget=) I think this is also the reason it appears at times that he is less emotional about her. She holds the memories. He has fragments.

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Same lol. I was like "yikes...".

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Then they should start building their own Pearl Jewelry Shop while it's still early. They will have so much to sell later.

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I'm a bit confused about LMH's character ..so is he the one from the ancient time? Or he's a doppelganger? But how come his parents even resemble the past ones. So if the mermaid originally loved the one from sageuk version, then it's not the same technically, considering heon joo doesn't come from the past. But everyone is reliving their character in the modern time, the villain, the hero, hero's parents. The only one who didn't die and kept living would be the mermaid. So I'm still not sure about the genre of the drama. Three-headed this one comment made by heon joo's x-gf that there's some possibilities of time travel. But how that fits in the script of the drama? Is the lmh from the past and the present same person?

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* There was this one comment made by heon joo's x-gf *

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I was also confused, I thought why does she not tell her name? Or does she not remember it?
That confusion just comes from thinking she is immortal, so she is the same one from the joseon era but I guess the mermaid in the modern world is also a reincarnation from the one in the past like everyone else.

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I think I readsomewjere in db thaththey are different mermaids. Hence the difference in tail colour and personality. And how the storh intertwined with each other,we have to wait.

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Granted-it is fantasy/fairy tale-but I also find some things confusing. Hopefully there will be more back story.
This is silly,but I wondered how Joseon Era mermaid knew how to wear clothers. Yet the modern era-her dress is on her head.
Perhaps she becomes more 'feral' when she is not on land. The longer off-land she is,the less she recalls on-land living?

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Watched for the Cha Tae-hyun and Jeon Ji-hyun reunion!

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Kyaaah!!! I never wanted that scene to finish!
I ❤ them together :) And it's cute that it seemed like he was like giving JJH away to LMH at the end..

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chataehyun!!!!!!

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"You're strong and sassy too" ヽ(*>∇<)ノ

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Talk about chemistry! I think these two totally look like they have some serious connection..In reel life I mean. I wish they act together again some day.

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there is no plot!! lol

and i'm kinda bummed we didnt get to know more about the mermaid in the beginning...like she just randomly one day decided to show up on shore and break into joon jae's apt?? lol how come she didnt go up to shore before? what was her motive? i wish we knew more about her thoughts and her character

AND i hate how they made the ending so dramatic...like why does joon jae think the mermaid would be in trouble...in his apt...all by herself..........???

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1) Lol yes forreal, no trace of a plot at all. And it's been 4 episodes! Where are we going, writer-nim? You just can't keep dragging us like this. If not this'll flop like Suzy and Woo Bin's drama.

2) I'm also disappointed that both mermaids, past and present, don't seem to have any fleshed-out characteristics! Right now they're just there and feel very 2D. A waste of JJH tbh.

3) Well someone did just get murdered in the neighborhood and he's on the loose. I think it's natural for JJ to be worried about her being alone, especially when she's very trusting and doesn't know anything yet.

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I don't remember it well, but was there ever a plot to U who came from the stars as well?

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i dont remember per se, but i think, it was saved by do min joon's alien power and chun song yi antics that make it more delightful to watch.

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I think the mermaid didn't 'just show up on shore and break into Joon Jae's apartment', remember there was a storm/ turmoil that she couldn't outswim in the first episode? That's how the Joseon and modern mermaid got washed up to the land, and I believe that's the first time Shim Chung realise that she can have LEGS too! Cue kdramaland coincidence- it's Joon Jae's apartment! ?

For the ending, Joon Jae was told my his friend that there was a murder (and there was this creepy guy that was following them the day before), and doesn't help that our mermaid is still so new to the human world that she trusts literally everyone. So yeah, I guess it sort of explains why he had to rush back. Even tho I agree it is kinda dramatic since he could've just waited awhile more or take another route back. But yunno, need to create tension for the episode's ending.

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+thumbs up.

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I think the problem with this show is it has so many characters and forces itself to introduce most of them in the first 2-3 episodes at the expense of the plot. It makes me confused and frustrated since there are so many characters to remember without actually understand why am I supposed to care about them and the story is not actually moving.

But I have faith in this writer. I believe the story is gonna be interesting once they're done with the intro. Well, based on her previous work, I'm pretty sure there are gonna be a lot of plot holes too here and there, but I think I can deal with that.

Well, at least, in this episode, I got a glimpse of where this story is heading to.

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There are many characters here but I don't think they are as many as were in YFAS... Its just they were interwoven better there from the get-go... From the chaebol family providing us with our villain and second lead male to Cheon Song Yi and her setup to Do Min Joon and his alien-ness....
Here some of the characters appear to stand-alone until a connection is later revealed

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Yes, too many characters. And it's worse because so many of them show up in both eras.

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i think for me its not really about it not having a plot because i love watching slice of life, but i think its more that the characters dont seem to be fleshed out per se especially the supporting characters, like i dont need their whole life story but they seem quite lackluster. its not a drama that im hooked on and buzzing about, idk what it is cause i dont have a problem with the actors even lee min ho. i think its a easy breazy drama so far and its nice but sometimes it feel like mmm are they taking their time cause they have 20 eps to fill

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We don't know more about the Mermaid from the show thus far cos it wasn't set up like YFAS where Do Min Joon would give us the backstory on his existence in the epilogue of each ep.

I'm curious to know more about the mermaid's world too...but if it had been set up with her giving her backstory through the epilogues, wouldn't people scream at the repetition and/or lack of originality?

I'm holding out hope for something like that though...

I felt my blood rush when there was that underwater scene of her riffing through the underwater treasures! Writer-nim needs to give us more backstory on Shim Chung...lol

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I was hoping that they wouldn't go down that route (evil stepmom), but I think my prayer hasn't been heard.

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The house - bedroom and attic is amazing

Looks like our murderer also knows art of hypnosis. Think he may try it on the mermaid and or LMH.. and will fail piquing his curiosity

Now it seems quite true that the two love stories are separate. It has to be reincarnation of both..

3/4 flow was so much better than 1/2

Hope evil step mom's son is not evil. Guessing mermaid mommy just disappeared leaving dad heartbroken. He still is in love with her.
Also, can someone please tell me who plays the younger version of LMH"s stepmom? I think i have seen her somewhere but just can't place it

And, as we debated last time - so seems someone did have a premonition about modern world mermaid-man love story (shaman!!)

******

I totaly rofled at the last bit..
Master and the two slaves...
BUT WAIT A MINUTE... that also means either of following

1. Joseon mermaid did marry LMH and became the mistress of the house ... and the last anecdote was when she reached middle age

2. Current LMH's mom is not a mermaid? Was just some noblewoman in the past..

Tilting towards theory 1

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But then if its theory 1 then the reincarnation theory fails..because that would mean that old mermaid reincarnated as LMH's mom of today.. :P

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OOps.. correction since i missed the last part..

Lovestory version 1 - joseon.. both died
Reincarnated love story version 2 - now a days

Mommy is LMH's mommy this time too..

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"Also, can someone please tell me who plays the younger version of LMH”s stepmom? I think i have seen her somewhere but just can’t place it"

Isn't she the same actress who played a kidnapper nurse in Signal?

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Yeah...the child kidnapper nurse in the first episodes.

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She was in Five Children and Beautiful Mother Mind.

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Five words:

Audley Hepburn

That loft, THO!

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*Audrey

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When Nam-Doo said that she's like Audrey, I don't know why thought of Audrey Hepburn's favorite poem:

Unending Love

I seem to have loved you in numberless forms, numberless times…
In life after life, in age after age, forever.
My spellbound heart has made and remade the necklace of songs,
That you take as a gift, wear round your neck in your many forms,
In life after life, in age after age, forever.

Whenever I hear old chronicles of love, its age-old pain,
Its ancient tale of being apart or together.
As I stare on and on into the past, in the end you emerge,
Clad in the light of a pole-star piercing the darkness of time:
You become an image of what is remembered forever.

You and I have floated here on the stream that brings from the fount.
At the heart of time, love of one for another.
We have played along side millions of lovers, shared in the same
Shy sweetness of meeting, the same distressful tears of farewell-
Old love but in shapes that renew and renew forever.

Today it is heaped at your feet, it has found its end in you
The love of all man’s days both past and forever:
Universal joy, universal sorrow, universal life.
The memories of all loves merging with this one love of ours –
And the songs of every poet past and forever.

-- Rabindranath Tagore

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Thank you for sharing!

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MY SUSHI GIRL

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Lol ?

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MY CITY MERMAID :)

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MY LOVE FROM THE SEA

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The Mermaid Living in Our House

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+100

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????

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She who holds the pearls must their weight

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You Who Came from The Ocean

My Sassy Con Man

Mackerel Taste

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Mermaid and the Magistrate
Mermaid in the Trap
Mermaid Family Book
Modern Mermaid
Oh My Mermaid
The Mermaid's Man

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Plus nine mermaids
Mermaid to hearts
Romantic mermaid Shim
Descendants of the blue sea
Let's fight mermaid
Swimming solo
Scarlet heart: Joseon Sea lovers

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"Descendants of the Blue Sea" had me ROFL, no kidding. hahahaha.

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Swimming Solo got me!

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Sub-mermaid-way!

*********
Its one of those times when you are watching fantastic beasts and where to find them.. and SUBWAY comes up .. you immediately think of the other SUBWAY..and not of the SUBWAY in front of you (you know.. metro subway)

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oh my god this entire thread is A+ HAHHAHAHA.

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LOL ? These replies are the real " The legend of the mermaid " ?

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And let's not forget another contender:

- Boys Over Mermaids

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AHAHAHA I like this one!

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I was thinking:

Mermaids over Flowers

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Boys over Fishies

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The Mermaid Who Embraces The Man
To The Beautiful Mermaid
When A Mermaid Loves
Shim Chung, Live By Love
All About My Mermaid
Oh Mermaid Again
One More Happy Mermaid

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My Sassy Mermaid
Mermaid Hunter
City Mermaid (or Shitty Mermaid lol)
The Mermaid's (Con)Man

Girl With A Pearl Tear

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City Mermaid!!

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Conning King Joon
Moonlight Covered by Storms
Mermaid House
Mermaid #15: Who Are You?
M-Two Worlds

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Lol! Since you mentioned M-Two Worlds, might as well throw in:

-Mermaid Shim Chung's Man

and I think the list will go on...

- On the Way To The Ocean
- Romantic Con Man Joon-jae
- Uncontrollably Frond
- Doppelganger Incarnate
- Kiss Me, Forget Me
- She Was Mermaid
- Mirror of the Mermaid

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Uncontrollably Frond

That's the best one since the one that started it

MY SUSHI GIRL

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Thank you all for posting those funny potential drama titles inspired by LOTBS. :)

This is my first ever post. Thank you DB for your hard work. <3

I love "My Sushi Girl".

I can only think of this as a contribution:
"What Happened in Girona"

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Here we go again! X'D

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Thanks javabeans. I watched this episode raw (because i cant wait for the subbed to be released) and your recap helps a lot. Thanks a bunch!

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Thank you for the recap javabeans!

I like it so far. It's good not to give away many things with just 4 Episodes out for a 20-Episode drama. A nice pace like this will do just fine for me :)

The funniest scene for me was when JJH was mimicking the other girl when she was eating the cake.LMAO

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I was thinking that she was such a sea puppy this entire episode. From how she responds to him adoringly like he can do no wrong; to how she'll follow anyone home; to hanging her head out the window when driving; to the cake scene; to waiting eagerly for him at the door. No wonder she keeps tearing down the barriers around his heart.

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I like LMH in sageuk garbs... I wish the Joseon story line longer. And CTH, he is simply love.

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Me too!! I have been wishing the Joseon storyline was longer... Now I just want Lee Min-ho to do a sageuk next!

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This show continues to be a delight. I laughed out loud when she mistook the fireworks as a gun. Her fish-out-of-water antics never get old. It was adorable how Chung pranced over to Tae Oh to show off her new name. We can all relate to her aggravation when an episode cliffhangs. Sadly, I found Cha Tae Hyun's cameo to be a letdown; it was needlessly wordy and lacked the impact that Hong Jin Kyung's had. Perhaps my expectations were too high after hearing My Sassy Girl would reunite.

I love the myth that mermaids mate for life. The tone of the Joseon storyline has every indication that Se Hwa and Dam Ryung's love will be tragic. They were in love as children, but he was forced to marry another woman; then he lost his memory, and she longed for him for years. I do believe Chung and Joon Jae will achieve what their past selves couldn't.

A big thanks for the recap, javabeans!

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? Me too. CTH's cameo didn't hit me with as much punch as HJK's! HJK was golden... CTH wasn't too bad either. But choice..ey!

The cameos in this show are stellar though! Just awesome.
I'm feeling some type of way about them even ? like some cameos ▶ cast....whereas in YFAS.... cast ▶ cameos..

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They should have let them meet in a train station with Chung looking dazed/drunk and CTH looking weirded out. XD

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Hmmm... maybe the writer gave us a clue at this ep's epilogue. Dam Ryung's mom became a housekeeper to the reincarnated version of her slave. So maybe JJ and Shim Chung will achieve what their past selves didn't.

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Did anyone else think of Winter Sonata at the end of ep 4?

Where's the originality in this drama? :(

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He will always come back for her, feed her, rescue her... Our mermaid can only love once-in-lifetime and he will inevitably love her eternally, his past self, current self, future self

I like LMH in this role. Especially not staring too hard like he did in Heirs. LOL.

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Hi you!

Lol on Kim Tan's stares in Heirs!

I think LMH is pretty good on this show. In fact he is really impressing me... Didn't 100% believe he had it in him...but his comedic timing has me in stitches almost as much as JJH'S... the chase scenes and him dealing like a buffoon with the baddies...this ep..him telling CTH that he was his ancestor to his descendant...had me in a guffaw fit... I laughed more at that interaction than CTH's with JJH.

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Totally agree with your comment, winching for the gangster when he kicked him in the you know where and looking so proud that he beat the three guys with his fist and looking at JJH for approval. That look was priceless.

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Hi affie!
+100000000
Yes his comedic timing as well as his other reactions and expressions are very different from his previous roles. I love the way he reacts to her swooning. He is like "please don't fall for me!", alternating between annoyance and fear/horror.

I also like the fact that he projected two different portrayals in different "self/era"... The sageuk self, noble and righteous, who was fascinated with her from the beginning. And the modern identity, conflicted and carefree, who was always relieved to be rid off her ...granted that the "2.0. version" isn't aware of her mermaid identity and she was painfully primitive.

This reminds me of W drama where 2.0 LJS's interactions with HHJ ... These two men couldn't walk away from the two gals who broke into the place and stole food etc ... And the two gals who erased their memories but were unable to forget their love-of-a-lifetime.....

In a way it feels a bit nostalgic and I certainly find both OTPs absolutely gorgeous, charming and likeable.

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LOVE that a drama is literally making me laugh uncontrollably again...can't remember the last one..

It seems like my habit now is to watch it once viki posts it sans subs and then read the recap...and if there are any particular parts I want to watch again I'll do that. The addiction is not as strong with this one yet where I will watch the ep 2x+read the recap..but that's cuz Javabeans and Girlfriday are just so damn fast! :)

Happy thanksgiving all!

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I really enjoy seeing "Gianna Jun" on screen. And in this show, i have no complaint, i love shows with two versions. That's why i still watch "You From Another Star" over and over again. So guys be calm, lets have some faith, it's just 4 episodes, this show will keep it's promise. You'll see.

That's all i had to say. Haha, nailed it!

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Am I the only one who thinks there's enough plot? Like I can't understand people who are saying there's no plot. I can understand if you say this story is not working for you but saying there's no plot is a reach.

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yh i think there is plot too , but the story is not for everyone,n because some compare it to YCFTS it feels like the story have been than before so it dosent feel fresh but i realise is the writers format of how she does her dramas. am loving this so far.

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I think it's more about the pacing. The development is a bit slow and it feels like the drama is holding back. I know it's 20 episodes and the writer doesn't want to give away too much but still . . .

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I was glad to see someone finally mentioning that the pace of this show, so far, is rather slow. Normally, KDRAMA's kick in during episode 4; after the "meet and greet" of episodes
1-3. Therefore, I was a little disappointed that it didn't finally start getting down to business in this episode.

I feel the show has had it's amusing moments, but, LOL I have not done. I know both these actors have strong comedic ability, but, it seems only she is being forced to "act/do" silly things and his reactions to her absurd behavior have been very restrained. His character is a pretty serious guy.

Also, I'm not feeling any "zing" between these two. There was ZING all over the place btwn her and KSH (U from STAR). Maybe, because they had acted together in that prior movie and were comfortable w/each other?

This show is very pretty, gorgeous in some shots. The scenic locals, fancy homes and LMH's very chic but understated wardrobe. He looks fabulous, past and present. They haven't been really able to focus on her beauty yet. But, even w/food smeared around her mouth, mussed up hair, and two different colored flipflops, she does glow.

Of course, I'll continue to watch it, hoping for the best; as I did SCARLET HEART, which was a major waste of talent.

Oh...I think all the humans are there via reincarnation. Obviously, the Cosmos is in perfect alignment for all to to have been re-born, except the Mermaid, in this current era and be living in the same city.

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JJH and LMH was not comfortable with each each at all during the press con. JJH even looked quite annoyed during the Q & A portion when LMH was talking. I wonder if something he said ticked her off or if her public persona is just cool and serious like that.

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Hummmm, Thanx for sharing that. If the chemistry btwn these 2 doesn't ratched up it will have an overall flattening effect on the show.

I hope this hasn't become a case of one (or both) superstar(s) not being comfortable sharing the adoration.

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Thanks, Lyn for mentioning the coolness. I saw a clip of the press conference where Jun mentions that they are (paraphrase) 'getting more comfortable as filming continues'. While I can't argue the acting quality I am not feeling the connection between LMH and JJH even though the story is making it clear. Am hoping the actors are able to develop the emotional component as the story continues. I am not enthusiastic about this drama now- and one thing I've learned from just about 3 years of watching is to wait and see. Some of the scenes are beautiful, some are hilarious, some are creepy and some seem superfluous (but that's not always predictable). It's all enough to keep me watching although I don't jump on it the minute it's posted. Cheers.

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I think it has as much plot as any other show this early on, it's just easy to miss it if you are too entranced by Jeon Ji-hyun's acting.

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IMO people tend to compare it with MLFTS, that's why they feel this show lacks plot wise. These people have already seen an alien fascinated with human world. So bringing in a mermaid to the human world may seem like this drama is the next season of MLFTS with a different cast but, with the same concept of ' strange species adapting themselves in our world.' Its like no matter how many versions you make, the first will always stay special.

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This exactly.

I made so much parallel comparisons without even realising... Like subconsciously wanting the story to just be a flip of the characters.... The mermaid having all the other worldly strength here like DMJ did in YFAS...Joon Jae being in constant danger here like CSY was in YFAS so it would always be Mermaid to the Rescue! LOL

I needed to stahp it! This story is unique and different in its own way too.

And before YFAS become my all-time favorite... I actually had to watch it a third time...cos i didn't like it the first two times I watched it. Ridiculous I know... First time I though the plot was over the top and over done... Second time...i thought the leads didn't have enough chemistry...

Third time was a charm! Everything was perfect. Wut? Lol. Dunno if it was because I had just had a baby...hehe

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Before I watched this show, I was like hmm JJH-LMH too pretty, but not bad. Then I saw CTH cameo, oh I wish that scene didn't end. And then LMH came, I was like nah! I liked JJH's chemi with CTH more. Well, this is just me.

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To be honest, I felt sad for CTH's character when it seemed that JJH wasn't giving a damn with what he's saying and became preoccupied with LMH in the end..

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Because that’s what the role (and scene) calls for it. When I heard their reunion, I was hoping for a subway scene (the mermaid got lost sheez) reminiscent of their first meeting in MSG. >,<

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Just wait a minute! She spent a whole night watching moving pictures on that laptop but she doesn't understand still pictures in a phone????! (Or freeze-frame at the end of an episode?)

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I think what she didn't know was the nature of taking pictures. The way people 'capture' the moment.

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I can't be the only one who thinks this drama is going nowhere. To those who love it I'm glad you do but there's quite a huge amount of flaws that can't be overlooked. I gave it a shot. Time to move on.

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And that, ladies and gentlemen,....is how to eat a cake. xD

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So who in real life is going to try it first?

I'll do it if I'm alone but not in front of Shin Hye Sun.

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I watch kdramas to entertain myself =) and so far, I like the comedy and drama that's in the last 2 episodes. It reminds me a bit of My Girlfriend is a Gumiho coz of JJH character and I like this more than You Who Came from the Stars. I only watched like 6 episodes of that kdrama then read recaps.

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Because that's what the role (and scene) calls for it. When I heard their reunion, I was hoping for a subway scene (the mermaid got lost sheez) reminiscent of their first meeting in MSG. >,<

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geesh! wrong post >,<

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I have watched a considerable amount of modern mermaid dramas in our country since I was young. I guess the only thing that they didn't explore here that I saw in almost every mermaid drama before is their underwater world or their own kingdom with sea deities and such. In those dramas, they have their fair share of sea characters as much as the human ones that I would care for both worlds.

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Heee... Are you talking about Dyesebel?

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Wow at the ratings jump for this episode. ?

I'm still enjoying this a lot. The little bits of fairytale-esque wistfulness and subtle melancholy just get me. ❤️

I'm wondering if the sudden onslaught of memories Joon Jae is getting is a normal side effect of the memory-erasing or if it's his brain almost "fighting" to remember her again. If not, why can he remember hearing her voice saying "I love you" ?

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He remembered that she told him'I love you' because that happened sometime after she gave him the kiss so that's a new memory that doesn't belong to all that was already erased.

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Ah, I forgot that she said "I love you" again on the beach after they jumped off the cliff. I thought it was from the time she said it when they were staying at the church.

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I'm still holding on to the theory that he's part-mermaid (on the maternal side) so that's why his brain is starting to fight the effects of mermaid-induced amnesia.

I think his conning abilities are because of his mermaid blood, not really the silly lighter. Look at how his mom gets her bosses to subconsciously follow her orders. Maybe JJ has a similar talent. XD

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@Mary

I am with you... i think JJ mom in Joseon era is a mermaid herself, but who is the father? kekekeke

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This drama is just a joy maybe it's just me but i see no similarities with you from the stars,i am just enjoying the drama as it is
with no comparisons. Lee min ho has improved so much and i am happy about it, looking forward to next week.

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Thanks for the recap. Jin-joo might have wished to become the master in the next life but we all know the real master in that household. No kidding!
I'm so enjoying this drama, do i have a problem with plot? Nope! Not at all.
So many things are happening that i really don't understand some of it tbh. Now we have a psycho on the loose. Well, just my cup of tea.

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Exactly! So many things are happening in this drama, I am not sure why people keep saying there is no plot. Like you said there is a pshyco on the loose, we have a joseon love story, is shim chung a reincarnation of sae hwa, how did joon jae's family separate, what about the drawing in the antique vase, what is shi ah and nam doo's deal, What about the kiss that erases memories, whether can it be controlled by the mermaid? I have so many questions. But I guess the drama lacks in making everything cohesive, since we seem to get all the information in parts, hence its harder to see the full picture. I guess, from that stems the feeling that there is no plot.

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At least the psycho on the loose has a face and can't travel through universes.

I'm also not sure why folks feel the plot is lacking. Boy meets mermaid, boy forgets mermaid, boy gets found by mermaid.

Sure, it's a twist on one of the oldest plots known to story telling, but it's pretty clear where this is going to me.

I expect that boy may lose mermaid again, and then have to find/save mermaid at least once in this show, but I also wonder if our fully faced psycho is about to find out that his "bait" may well kick his tail this round.

I just hope the writer doesn't turn our kick tail mermaid into a suddenly hapless victim over and over again. That I never want to see again in any drama ever again.

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Nope! I don't think we are going to have that kind of problem (i hope). remember the scene where they were chased by goons? she was doing the ass kicking while he thought he was the hero! so i think she'll be doing most of the bad-assery in here.

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I sure hope so, bubblefairy, but I've been disappointed before. It would be great if the writer lets her stay herself. :D

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I like this drama best when the leads are together! Her antics and his reactions are really interesting to me and keeps me engaged. Joon jae's family looks so warm and happy in the past. I am really curious to know how they got estranged from each other and are living in different places now. I am not even sure whether joon jae or his dad knows about joon jae's mom's existence. I am curious about shi ah's deal too. Is she just the usual evil second lead or is there more to her intentions? We have to wait and see.

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So that scene where she was eating the birthday cake was absolutely HILARIOUS! I couldn't breathe I was laughing so hard! And I had to play it back. Jeon Ji-hyun is so freaking awesome.

And I either need the Joseon storyline to either be longer or for someone to offer Lee Min-ho a sageuk after this!

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This scene and the one where she jumped to protect LMH from the 'gunshots', *whispers* 'I'll protect you' HAHAH. And the one where she mugged the little girl for money to buy food. I rewatched it at least 5 times and its still as funny! Hahahaha!

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Ha ha.. I enjoyed those scenes immensely too. Jeon ji hyun is really selling this character. Also the scene where she went to tell tae ho her new name, She was just adorable.

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I love that she's a kdrama addict in this episode and the other episode where she had bags from watching all night. I also love that she jumps on LMH every chance she gets! Kisses may cause amnesia but jumping on him/rolling on him are fully acceptable! ??? Wouldn't we all...

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Could they PLEASE stop giving Sung Dong-Il those horrible teeth in every Saeguk he's in? I swear, his teeth were the main reason I dropped Jang Ok Jung, Living by Love. If it weren't for Jeon Ji-hyun in this show....

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You cracked me up w/this comment about his teeth.

I KNOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It's two in a row, this year, that his character's have had icky teeth!

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Lol!

They want to underscore that he's an icky character thus he's got icky teeth. In case we don't know yet that his character is so. Haha! :p

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Hahahaha I think it's the ongoing joke for him and all the producers/costume designers he works with. I just stare and stare at his rotten teeth every time!

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The scene with CTH when Joon Jae lifted his wallet up was hilarious. #Shortpeopleproblems
How am I going to survive till next Wednesday. Am like TT

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One raises his sword to strike her legs—but then, he’s struck in the chest with an arrow.

It looked like an arrow, but in slow-mo it's Dam-ryung's sword. Then when he appears he's not stabbing the bad guy, he's pulling his sword back out. Note the shortage of bows and archers in the scene, and also earlier when he was riding off to find her.

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Yes, you're right. It's his sword, not an arrow.

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The line which caught my attention on this episode was this
"A mermaid, who can only love once in her life, will risk that life for that love.”

I dont know why, it feels so sad and tragic. But it also feels so beautiful at the same time. To love unconditionally, , going to great heights, to protect your love, just for that ONE PERSON. It speaks thousand words.Wow. It really touches your soul.

In my heart , resides only you
Your face, your smile, your eyes
How can i let go of you
My love, you are my fated one

With every breath i take
It is only for your sake
When i open my eyes, it is you
When i close my eyes, it is still you

How can i let go of you
My love, you are my fated one

Your mind may not remember me
But your heart still know its me
Look back just for once
You will find answers to all your questions

How can i let go of you,
My love, you are my fated one

Our paths were to meant to cross
No matter where we go
Be it today, be it tomorrow
We will meet yet again ,one day

How can i let go of you
My love, you are my fated one

I put my life at stake
Leaving everything and my lake
A promise i vowed to fulfill
Within your memories it is hidden

How i can let go of you
My love, you are my fated one

Till my last breath
No one can take your place
It is you, it shall be you
It always ,will be you

How can i let go of you
My love, you are my fated one

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Am watching this show together with my wife and we've written a joint review of this episode here:
https://kdramaanalysis.wordpress.com/2016/11/25/legend-of-the-blue-sea-episode-4/

Our thoughts on this episode:

1. This episode and episode 3 seems to lack some of the fun, playful energy that characterised last week's episodes. In fact, the modern day storyline is largely less compelling that the Joseon one. Part of it is because we find the supporting characters in the modern storyline not as interesting and also the storyline is looser.

2. We did like the way the romance and relationship between Shim Chung and Joon-jae developed in this episode very naturally out of their personalities and background. It was fun and very real.

3. Appreciate the way in which both the Joseon and modern storyline are starting to merge and parallel each other, in both serious ways and also playful ways!

These points are elaborated on in our blog entry. :)

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With all the people who show up in both Joseon & modern periods, I *guess* Dam-Ryung's bride from episode 3 was Si-Ah (?) Couldn't really see bride's face very well, but considering how everybody else who is anybody shows up twice it would be weird if it wasn't her.
Then her marriage and the crappy way she got treated in the past sheds some light on her obsession with Joon-Jae in the present. But I expect things won't turn out her way this time either. Maybe next time.

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Liking this Shi-Ah as Unwanted Joseon Wife theory... in that case...she would still have unfinished business in this era...

Would make sense too if it pans out that way... just hoping it doesn't begin to feel like an oversaturation of parallelism in the eras...

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To be frank, as a person who hasn't watched even one Saeguk dramas and dislikes it, I love the Saeguk prologue in each episode of this drama. This tells how good the writing and directing of the LOTBS is.

Also I think Lee Minho's acting has improved and it is no more going to stop me from completely loving him. There are still scenes where he could have done a bit more but it is far better than BOF & Heirs (The only two shows of his, I have watched till date). This is also the first drama of JJH that I'm watching and she is really good.

The main purpose of any drama is to relieve our real life's stress but, at the same time it should impart social messages and this drama is a perfect example of it. It has humour, love ,life values and little mysteries that are not mind numbing or emotionally draining us or controlling our lives by making us addicts. A drama which you can sit back and watch leisurely at the end of the day for an hour. Sure, it has some flaws but it doesn't make you watch the clock for it to get over.

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I am so happy with LMH's character in this drama... after the nightmare that is Heirs. But I actually enjoyed BOF; I loved Gu Jun Pyo -- I think he nailed that character. You should also try watching City Hunter. That, for me, was his best performance.

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Personal Taste is still my favorite out of the dramas LMH is in that I've watched. Faith is a close second, which I've found gets better every time I rewatch it, as earlier bits in the show enrich others further on, showing how strong the writing really is. City Hunter I'll always like as far as overall revenge/action genre--they had me at the mud fight scene, and I loved a lot of the character portrayals overall in that drama. BoF was fun but annoying here and there--and I know I don't hold it nearly as favorably as many others do. Heirs, though...*sigh* I still do not understand why they had to make it a high school show when it was based on a college story. I know that didn't make or break it, but I don't think it helped. I also dislike PSH in that I think she does terrible kissing scenes, and he is her polar opposite in this regard which made it worse. I think her acting overall is worthwhile, but I have yet (even in Pinocchio which I know some folks think she was better) to see her in a kiss scene where I felt like she was involved in any way other than being on the receiving end. I know about the Korean "limp doll ideal" problem, but I think she has a lot to learn about how to seem in the moment better in that particular aspect.

I'm still having a bit of trouble liking his acting in this show as much as I thought I would, but I'm starting to see some character aspects work better for each era's characters.

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Lol..Jun Ji Hyun's character names are like tongue twisters to me...

Cheon Sung Yi.. Shim Cheong Yi.. Cheon Sung Yi.. Shim Cheong Yi..Cheon Sung Yi....

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Yes. Too similar to be coincidence.

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In another news, how many of us think that JJH looks lot like Suzy Bae??

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Or that JJH also really looks good in hanbok. It's the first time, I saw her wearing this and she stands out... real pretty.

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Nope, NOT AT ALL. NADDAH.

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In love with this drama, every episode we get a little more information but also a lot of new questions, I thought the villain was going after SC but he wants to hurt JJ instead, I guess once he finds out about the mermaid he would also go after her. I have a really bad feeling about Shi-Ah, I don't know if she is in love with JJ or she is after his money, whatever the case, I don't like her !!!

Can't wait to see my hero next episode, he says he doesn't cae about SC, but he sure is doing everything to protect her

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Guys the ost playing in this episode when she goes to sleep in the room above Lee min hoes.What's the song name and the singer in it?

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I recognized the ENYA song too:) Works very well here.

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Agree, not bad but ok, some people felt the same with Descendants Of The Sun, but I would put DOTS above this, story wise.

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Which part of the Han Gang was Cha Tae-Hyun's cameo flimed?

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So far, I don't love this drama, but ... I think I like it! is not really bad ... but my love is for previous dramas of the main actors, (Boys Before Flowers and My Love From The Star)

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Am I the only one who still wonders why jjh erased lmh's memory? I get that she wanted him to forget that she is a mermaid, but then she shows up as a mermaid in the aquarium and doesn't mind everyone watching her and even tries to get lmh's attention. I don't think she knows that they're all thinking they're watching the mermaid show.

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Honestly, it might not matter in the grand scheme of things. But to hang our hats on something, how about this: she panicked and was impulsively giving him "the kiss of life" (child like impulsiveness is her main character trait.) And she did it because she also had child like faith that she'd be able to resuscitate love too if she could figure out a way to spend more time with him.

One of the things that this writer is genius at is knowing how to blend genres. And for poking fun at how they're commonly executed. Here she's blending a fusion sageuk (classic tragic sageuk + fantasy) with a fusion rom com (rom com + fantasy + melo).

The sageuk part may be more appealing to Beanies because its genres adhere closely to rules and a highly structured plot. And the director is adept at this. However modern dramas notoriously play it fast and loose with the rules. I wouldn't be surprised if much in the modern part is being written as parody; but it's directed in a way that doesn't communicate parody. (Like the overwrought theme song from episode 3; which I took way too seriously until another Beanie pointed out it was likely parody). It's a tricky thing. Parody is hilarious when it hits a sweet spot of perfect execution when the show itself seems in on the joke. But, if that sweet spot is missed things meant as parody will just seem sloppy/confusing, frustrating or mean-spirited.

(Here's another example. In a recent DB podcast a comment was made on casting decisions and the importance of writing / directing characters in a way that keeps them within the range of their less experienced actors. I've been ROFL at how they're doing that here. But it's hard to make a comment on it without seeming mean spirited. Mostly because the character isn't being directed in a way that makes it seem like they're in on the joke.)

My conclusion is this: none of this means we can't love the show. We just need to accept it on its own merits. The director is great at making people and things sunny and attractive in a storybook kind of way. So we can enjoy the modern bits as a drama within the drama; where we can check our brains at the door and just enjoy the fun and the pretty in a fangirlish way.

It's not a sign of being non-intelligent to overlook non-essential inconsistencies and choose follow the plot in broad strokes. And the drama doesn't have to be epic to be a delightful viewing experience. It only becomes non-fun if the tone is set for this to become a tedious conversation between Negative Nelly, Debbie Downer, Samantha Snob and Priscilla Pickyune. Or I-wish-this-was-YFAS-v.2.0. I hope we can all choose to be happy. ?

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She arrived and fell asleep in the quarium when it was empty. When she woke up, I don't think she expected to see so many people but was entranced by it all.

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"..but I thought it was fairly reasonable rationale: She had to send them into the water to save them from the guns, he inevitably saw her mermaid tail, ergo amnesia kiss..."

Why does it matter if he saw her tail in the modern time? His Joseon doppelganger fell in love with her knowing she had fins.
That was the beauty of their relationship. Having the ability to love someone who is so different with very little hope of having a normal life together.
Why are they taking that away from him?

(I think this writer likes having her heroine chase after the hero. Hi, You from the Stars).

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Her Joseon doppelganger Saw Hwa already met DR as a child and was able to develop a close friendship with him. But even then she wasn't exposing herself to anyone else. She didn't choose DR to see her fins as an adult bc she was captured. Since the entire village knows about her being a mermaid, it would seem pointless to erase his memories again. Especially when it was clear he had no intention of harming her and even rescued her from her captors despite not recognizing her from his childhood.

Shim Chung is in a completely different situation where she doesn't know how Joon Jae will respond.

It's not simple case of loving someone who is different. This is someone of another species that has fins.

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Did she know back then that he would accept her the way she is? She is still a mermaid and he is still a human.

Loving someone who is different or has fins is not simple but he did it.

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i dont know why you guys said this drama have thin plot/no plot.for me the plot is there and we still have 16 more episodes so give it a time for develop.
btw i love this drama cg is breathtaking and fantasy element is great..

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Im enjoying the show a lot. It is very slow paced, plot wise which I don't think is a bad thing. Great stories come from slow beginnings. Im not a big fan of the memory kiss but still, LOBSTER is a delight to watch.

I hope JJH develops a little bit more as a character. I find Lee min Ho's performance very self contained regarding emotions, but then again, he does convey overwhelming intensity somehow. Thats what I always like about his acting.

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Does anyone know the name of the aquarium where Jun Ji hyun and Lee Min ho met?

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I think it's this one: http://english.visitkorea.or.kr/enu/ATR/SI_EN_3_1_1_1.jsp?cid=1352705

I searched 63 building seoul aquarium

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First of all thank you very much for the recaps!! I love reading them!! And, as I am not Korean, they help me a lot in understanding the situations :-)

In general, I am liking this drama…at least it has the capacity of making me laugh a lot…well, JJH does…and in this episode I found the epilogue pretty funny too.

I have read several comments about the lack of a plot and I think that, perhaps, the plot is the story of the two main characters in itself…about how they overcome their odds and can built a life together? vs. the Joseon tale that gives me the feeling that is not going to end well at all…..a kind of boy meets girl time and again until they get it right……just saying.

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Sorry, could I please re-start a discussion from the comments to episode 2? I read it too late, and I would really like to hear people's opinions about my point of view.
It's that some users said that the type of plot with the main characters having formed their bond in the past, in this case as children, has become over-used and annoying, to which I would like to object, since it's one of my favorite types of plot;
I especially with the statement that “a present strong bond is not made any more significant by having a past connection”. I think IT IS made more significant, especially if this bond is formed as children, even before teenage years, this kind of love is especially pure and sublime, children and generally more innocent then adults after all. I don’t know, I don’t think this plot is over-used in fiction, at least in its “perfect” form, with happy endings and characters never cheating on each other. It is quite difficult to find a childhood love story without annoying love triangles, where the obstacles and problems for the characters are “external” and don’t “corrode” their relationship from inside. And, by the way, even though here the discussion is civilized, but I have seen many sites, blogs, forums about different kinds of fiction, where PLENTY of people were bashing the stereotype of “being forever faithful to the first love” in an extremely offensive way, even calling it “immature” and “childish”….. ? In my opinion, if there is something immature and childish (and even plain evil), it’s when people genuinely hate something as tender, cute and sublime as the love formed in the innocent age of childhood, especially if it lasts forever. It is extremely rare in real life, so I am always happy that it exists at least in fiction, even though such books and films are hard to find.
Sorry for the very long post and if I sound somehow harsh and maybe even belligerent, it’s just after all those insults towards the “childhood sweetheart” trope on various forums, I became ultra-defensive towards these stories. I even take insults directed at me as a person more lightly than an insult towards the rare trope of childhood love.