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The Lonely Shining Goblin: Episode 2

Our goblin isn’t used to anyone getting an inside peek at his life, but suddenly there are humans and reapers invading his space left and right, forcing him to let people in whether he likes it or not. Those connections turn out to be pretty crucial, both in making me care about the story, and showing us the very human and hilarious side of the goblin—the one who’s 935, going on 20.

 
EPISODE 2 RECAP

After declaring that she’s the goblin’s bride, high-schooler Eun-tak follows the goblin through a door… and ends up in Canada, where he’s just portal-jumped from Seoul. Goblin Kim Shin jumps and marvels at the human girl’s ability to follow him here.

She says that she’s made up her mind—if he’s got powers like this, she’s going to marry him. “I love you,” she announces with a giant grin.

He’s taken aback by the sudden declaration, and she teases that he’s putting on an act like he’s never heard those words before. She points out that he’s not actively turning her down. Shin tells her to stop it, but she’s having too much fun at his expense and decides they’re going sightseeing. “Think of it as our honeymoon,” she says as she leads the way.

Eun-tak runs through the streets like a kid in a candy store, zigzagging her way through shops and sights, making Shin dizzy and exasperated. She prods him to tell her that she’s acting very natural and not at all like a tourist, and he doesn’t bother replying.

Shin notices how happy she looks inside a store filled with Christmas decorations, but when she asks him to take her picture (showing him how to use a camera phone like he’s eighty, ha), he doesn’t even look at her as he snaps the picture.

Eun-tak loves the falling autumn leaves, and says that the ones on the ground are a red carpet laid out especially for her. She asks him about a strange street sign with elves on it, and he says that it’s a fairy-sighting district. Eun-tak tells the goblin that he must be very happy to meet a fairy like her, reminding him that she’s Tinkerbell. He tries to temper his scowl and ends up twitching.

She reaches up to try and catch a falling leaf, and starts to tell him that if you catch one on its way down… She turns around and bumps into him, standing there with his arm sticking straight up and a perfect little maple leaf in his hand.

Eun-tak tells him to throw it away, because if you catch a falling autumn leaf on its way down, your love with the person you’re walking with will come true. He accuses her of making that up just now, and she insists that it’s true, just like catching a cherry blossom leaf and making your first love come true.

He asks why she wants him to throw it away when she said she loved him earlier, and she asks again if he’s a goblin. He denies it and asks why she was trying to catch a leaf then, and she says she thought of herself as walking with that oppa over there. “Oppa?” he asks incredulously as he turns to see a handsome young man leaning against a tree.

Eun-tak snatches the leaf out of his hand and runs over to the handsome oppa, only to run back twice as fast, gasping, “Canadian ghost!” Shin just goes on his way, and she has to double back after him.

Eun-tak complains that Canadian ghosts are way scarier because they speak English, and then realizes they’re in a hotel lobby. She gives him the side-eye and says that he shouldn’t be bringing a high-schooler somewhere like this, and Shin comes back with a deadpan “You said you were going to marry me.” He tells her to wait in the lobby while he goes out for a while. She panics about being left alone, and guesses that he’s going to meet a lady friend.

Back in Seoul, the grim reaper meets with a reaper hoobae—also a man in black, with a black hat. He hands our Reaper a black file on a missing person and asks how something like this happens, since he’s never personally encountered a missing person before.

Reaper says that it’s the whim of the gods, which humans mistake for miracles, and what reapers call missing persons. He adds that his case is particularly complicated, since the missing person never had a name, and the hoobae reaper sighs sympathetically about the paperwork involved.

Hoobae reaper complains about reapers having to pay rent and eat when they’re hungry and sleep when they’re tired, finding it unfair. Just then, a woman enters the coffee shop and starts to argue loudly with a man, accusing him of hitting her with his car and trying to run. Reaper dons his hat and heads back to work.

He tells the man and woman that they’ve just died in a car accident, and takes them to his mystical tea shop, where he offers the woman tea that will let her forget everything in her past life. She asks if she has to drink it, not wanting to forget how much she hates this man, and Reaper advises her to: “Oblivion is a consideration from the gods.”

The man asks where his tea is, and Reaper says he should remember every bad thing he’s done, especially since this isn’t the first time someone’s died because of him. We rewind to the snowy night when Eun-tak’s mother was hit by a car when she was pregnant with her, and see that the hit-and-run driver was this man.

Reaper tells the man that he’ll come to regret this moment when he couldn’t drink the oblivion tea, and then he’ll remember why he couldn’t have it, and realize: “That there isn’t one moment you can turn back. And that you are already in hell.” Reaper describes the pain that he will endure, his body torn into shreds daily and nothing but regret on his mind, forever and ever. Satisfied at the man’s future in hell, the woman drinks her tea in one shot.

The man grovels on his knees, but the Reaper points up at the sky at the capricious gods, since it’s out of his hands. He says he knows one person who lives in hell with all of the memories of his past life intact. Reaper says that person probably begged for forgiveness countless times, as we cut to Shin standing in a cemetery in Canada. “But it was no use, because he still stands in the center of hell,” Reaper concludes.

Shin stands at the graves of the Yoo family members who have served him for nearly a thousand years. Shin narrates, “I have buried the young grandson of the grandson of the grandson who left Goryeo with me. There was a time when I thought of this life as a reward, but my life was a punishment. I have never forgotten a single death.”

We see that the young boy who left Goryeo with Shin, Geum-sun, survived the shipwreck (thank goodness), and that he grew up into a young man, and then grew old.

Shin also suffered immense agony from the sword that remained lodged in his heart, and despite his desperate attempts to pull it out and end his life, he could never remove it.

Back in the present, Shin puts flowers on Geum-sun’s grave and asks how he’s been. Shin says he’s been alive all this time, but hasn’t been at peace. The camera pans over to the headstone next to Geum-sun’s, a nameless grave which has a picture of Shin on it, for one of his past identities. Ugh, I can’t help but think it’s where he’d want to be buried when he dies.

Eun-tak waits in the hotel lobby, and finally decides to head outside. She walks up to a nearby park, and discovers Shin at the top of the hill. “I’ve found you,” she says to herself with a smile.

She doesn’t make her presence known, and remains at a distance watching Shin among the graves. She picks up a dandelion and blows the wisps in his direction, and they reach him all the way down the hill, though he doesn’t notice.

It isn’t until dusk that he gets up, and he’s surprised to find Eun-tak there. She notes that his grave is the only one with no name, and asks if he always has to leave the places he’s lived. She asks how many times he’s done so, and he says he’s never counted.

Eun-tak bows at Shin’s grave and introduces herself, addressing the Shin who “died” in 1801: “I’m going to be your bride in about two hundred years,” she declares cheerfully. Shin: “No you’re not.” Eun-tak: “I guess not.”

She says that ajusshi will still be handsome two hundred years later, though his personality is a little mean, and assures him that he “grows up well.” As they walk back, Eun-tak asks if he lived a long time here, and Shin says he’s left and come back, again and again, and that this was the first place he landed after leaving his hometown. She thinks it’s a pity that he didn’t buy the land that the hotel was built on because it could be his by now.

He stops to look at her, and she wonders if maybe the hotel really belongs to him, suddenly very eager to get on his good side. He asks if she isn’t late for school, and suddenly Eun-tak’s face goes pale as she asks what time it is in Seoul. At the thought of her homeroom teacher’s wrath, she whimpers, “Should I just live here? Illegal immigration is better than being tardy, right?”

He leads the way, and they step from nighttime in Quebec to daytime in Seoul. Eun-tak says she slept well, since it feels like it was all a dream. She knows it’s time to wake up now and asks for Shin to forgive her for anything she did in Canada, saying that she was just so excited.

At school, Eun-tak’s nasty teacher assumes that she isn’t bothering with her schoolwork because she can’t afford to go to college anyway. Eun-tak insists that she’s going to college, and the teacher reacts like she’s being defiant. Who certified you, lady?

At the bus stop that night, Eun-tak takes out her Quebec guidebook and flips through the pages wistfully, and pulls out the maple leaf that Shin caught.

She thinks of Shin as a radio DJ says, “When you’re coming home on a rainy night, what is it that becomes your umbrella? A voice that answers when you call, a memory of seeing the same thing at the same time, the first time you matched someone’s pace. Does someone come to mind? Yes, it’s that person. I’m sending you this first song.”

Shin returns home and orders Reaper to follow him for an urgent matter. Reaper warns that it’d better be really important, otherwise he’s dead, and Shin counters that this is a matter of life and death for him.

With that, he storms out the front door and exits into that garden with the buckwheat flowers. Reaper goes out the same front door… but ends up on the front stoop of the house. They both stand around waiting for the other in different spaces, and then Shin goes back the way he came and comes out of the house again.

Reaper finds the whole thing curious, and Shin mutters to himself that the kid managed to do a thing that the reaper couldn’t. Reaper gets competitive and demands to know who did what that he couldn’t do, and says they’ll do it again.

He presses himself up against Shin’s back, saying, “I’ll stick really close this time,” and Shin practically jumps out of his skin. Shin dismisses the reaper as nothing but a monster and tells him to get lost.

Shin’s “nephew” caretaker Deok-hwa arrives and asks Reaper if everything is going well in the house, and if it’s not too humid. He reaches out for a handshake, and Reaper leans away from him, making sure not to touch.

Deok-hwa wonders what to call him, since he can’t keep addressing him as New Tenant, and decides on Last Room Uncle, since he’s got the room at the end of the hall. He asks Last Room Uncle to do him a favor and lie to Grandpa about living here, because Deok-hwa knows he’ll be in trouble for renting out the house.

Eun-tak returns to the same door that led her through the portal, and pleads for Canada to still be on the other side. But it’s no longer a portal and she just ends up in the restroom, where fairy godmother Samshin Granny (still in her beautiful young lady guise) is washing up.

Eun-tak doesn’t recognize her, but Samshin Granny takes in her appearance and asks if she’s a senior, pretending that it’s the tired eyeballs and the uniform that were a giveaway. Granny hands Eun-tak a bag of spinach and tells her to share it with her family.

Eun-tak is met with more abuse when she gets home, and Aunt snaps at her to hurry up and cook them dinner. Eun-tak sighs at the empty fridge and remembers the spinach, so she rolls some kimbap.

Her cousin comes running out to tattle on Eun-tak when she discovers the Quebec guidebook in her bag, and Aunt whaps her over the head repeatedly with it, accusing Eun-tak of planning a getaway with Mom’s insurance payout. Eun-tak cries that it’s just a memento.

Aunt is distracted for a moment when one cousin goes to cut the kimbap and cuts her own finger instead, and then the other cousin takes a bite and immediately starts to choke. Aunt runs over to her kids, and Eun-tak grabs her guidebook and dinner before running out the door. She sits outside trying not to cry, alternating between mouthfuls of kimbap and wiping her tears away.

Shin lies awake in bed going over what he knows about Eun-tak—she has the ability to summon him and can follow him through portal doors, but she can’t see the sword in his chest.

He wonders what she is, and then suddenly remembers her “I love you” and says aloud in his formal old-timey speech, “Moreover, if she meant those words, it is most vexing.” His foot shakes and his teeth rattle, and he finally darts up in bed and declares that curiosity always defeats dignity. Ha.

He tosses dignity aside and shows up in the street where Eun-tak is pacing back and forth. He stammers that he’s very busy and acts like he’s totally put out that she summoned him here, and Eun-tak says she really didn’t summon him this time. Cue awkward silence.

He lies through his teeth that she called him here, and asks if she wasn’t thinking about him just now. He looks nervous as he waits for her answer, but she confirms that she was, and Shin runs with it.

Eun-tak asks if merely thinking of him will summon him too, and Shin mumbles that the rules aren’t really clear, but he’s very sensitive to these things. He asks the nature of her thoughts about him, and Eun-tak says that she thought she’d be happy living in Canada, and that made her think of him.

She says that he was wearing expensive clothes and might even own that hotel, but she’d wondered why he looked so sad. Shin doesn’t answer, and instead asks why she’s pacing around so late at night. Eun-tak says she’s waiting for her family to fall asleep. Shin walks with her for a while and says that he’s walking to digest his food, so she shouldn’t misunderstand. She points out that he’s said that three times already.

Across the street, Eun-tak’s mean-girl classmate sees them and texts her friend to say that Eun-tak is with a man in his thirties, who must be her sugar daddy. She gets ready to take a picture of them, when suddenly the car door she’s standing behind shoots open and knocks her off her feet. The girl is about to complain to the person inside the car… except there’s no person inside. Shin doesn’t even glance her way, and the girl runs crying home to mommy.

Eun-tak continues her job search, and walks inside yet another chicken shop (the help wanted sign at this one says they’re looking for “someone who will be like family”). She’s immediately struck by the beautiful woman sitting inside the empty restaurant—this is SUNNY (Yoo Inna), who tosses her hair expertly and then asks if Eun-tak wants chicken to-go.

Eun-tak says she’s here for the part-time job, and Sunny tells her to sit, though she says that she can’t remember the last time she’s had a customer. Sunny is a bit odd, only half-listening to Eun-tak and mostly sighing over and over about how she can’t remember the last time someone ordered a chicken or asked for more radish.

Sunny asks direct questions like, “Are you poor?” and when Eun-tak says she’s a senior in high school, Sunny just says it must be nice to be young. It’s like she has no linking logic between her thoughts, and Eun-tak can barely keep up with the changing conversation.

For no discernable reason, Sunny declares that today will be their Day One, and gives Eun-tak the job. Eun-tak leaps from her chair, overjoyed, while Sunny just sighs dispassionately over the lack of customers for the millionth time.

Eun-tak clutches her new nametag happily and thinks about Shin, calling out to him in her thoughts. She whirls around expecting him to show up, but he doesn’t, so she resorts to lighting a match and blowing it out.

Shin appears before her, steak on a fork, mouth hanging open mid-bite. She marvels at the expensive food he eats, and he asks if she can’t call and make appointments like a normal person, and think of him. He means for her to be considerate, but she changes the meaning and complains that thinking of him didn’t work this time.

Eun-tak adds that she’s interested in promising the future though, and says again, “I love you!” Shin bites into his steak and stomps off.

When Shin returns to the house waving his fork in the air, Reaper watches him warily and decides that he must be crazy. Reaper goes through a whole ritual to climb into bed that night, but it’s ruined anyway when Shin bursts into the room and frightens him.

Out of breath, Shin asks if this outfit is better than the one he was just wearing, and Reaper can’t tell that he changed clothes at all. Neither can I, pfft. Shin holds up a book and asks, completely straight-faced, “Does this book go with this outfit? She’s going to keep summoning me, and no matter when or where, I want to appear smart and flawless.” Hahahahaha. This is the best.

Reaper asks who this person is, but Shin just tells him to focus and imagine that it’ll be the outfit he wears to leave this house in, and suddenly Reaper perks up and gives him an enthusiastic two thumbs-up.

Shin moves on to modeling CD vs. record, wanting to know if it’s better to go with classical or k-pop. Reaper bursts his bubble by saying that kids listen to audio files nowadays. Shin doesn’t even get past the door with his giant paintings.

Shin creeps up onto Reaper’s bed and pulls back the sheet, marveling at how he sleeps like a dead person in a coffin. Reaper wails to be allowed to sleep, and then we fade to morning, when he wakes up with a granny sleeping cap on his head and a flower-print blanket. “I’m going to crush him,” Reaper grinds out.

Shin chuckles to himself, and Reaper comes out to collect his laundry. He grabs a pair of underwear and starts to sing the children’s song, “The goblin’s panties are strong. The goblin’s panties are smelly~”

Shin warns him peevishly to cut it out, but Reaper continues and wonders what you’d have to do to your panties for there to be a whole song about it. “Was it manly?” Reaper leans down to ask. Shin screams at him to stop it, and Reaper just pleasantly returns to folding his laundry.

Nephew Deok-hwa comes by to check on Uncle Shin on a stormy day, and finds him curled up in bed and looking so defeated. In a very dramatic tone, Shin reverts to his formal speech and tells Deok-hwa that it’s time for him to hear the truth about his family and Shin’s tragic fate. Shin tells him not to be surprised, and then takes a deep breath and says, “I am actually…”

“A goblin?” Deok-hwa interjects, stealing all of Shin’s thunder. Deok-hwa says he’s known since he was six, given the whole I-summon-you-gold thing (in traditional lore, a goblin has a magical stick that he uses to summon gold at will).

In flashback, we see Shin sitting before piles and piles of gold bars that he made appear. Little Deok-hwa knew then that Shin wasn’t his real uncle.

Back in the present, Deok-hwa says stuff like this is why he couldn’t possibly not know… and we cut to his view of Shin, floating in the air like a genie. Deok-hwa worries about him accidentally showing his magic in front of others, while Shin is focused on one thing: the fact that Deok-hwa has known he was a goblin since he was six, and has used banmal with him all this time.

Shin floats higher and higher, and lightning strikes in the sky. Suddenly scared, Deok-hwa tacks on a little jondae at the very end to appease his uncle.

At the chicken shop, Sunny is happy at the sudden rainstorm, given that there are no customers anyway, rain or shine. Eun-tak is downcast because she doesn’t have an umbrella, and Sunny offers her one of her many umbrellas, and tells her not to bother bringing it back.

Eun-tak lights up like she’s been given something precious and Sunny finds it odd, but that’s because she doesn’t know about Eun-tak’s horrible selfish umbrella-hogging family. Sunny heads out for a break and advises Eun-tak to play hooky while the boss is away, and Eun-tak looks positively smitten with her.

Sunny goes to get her fortune read by a shaman, who sighs that she’s an orphan with no luck, and warns her against a man in a black hat. Sunny just hopes that the man in the hat is very handsome.

Shin stops Reaper on his way out, and Reaper says he’s headed to the dry cleaners, indicating the “dry clean only” tag on his hat. Shin says, “I’ve felt this every time, but that hat is a very good plan… to look ridiculous in front of the dead for the last time.”

Reaper huffs but says the hat is how the dead recognize him, and also how he prevents the living from seeing him. Shin: “It’s a good thing the living can’t see you. It would be very embarrassing.” Lol, the hat jokes.

Shin is pleased at getting the last word, and then proceeds to sit there with his smartypants props, just waiting for Eun-tak to summon him.

Eun-tak puts a protective coating on her autumn leaf to give as a gift, and her friend calls it old-fashioned. She says it’s okay because she’s giving it to someone old, and when her friend asks if she has a boyfriend, Eun-tak calls it a thank-you gift for helping her get a job.

Eun-tak blows out a match and says that she has a present for ajusshi. But when she looks up, it’s not Shin, but Reaper who’s there to see her. She reaches up to her neck and says she forgot her scarf, just like the last time she saw him.

That’s confirmation enough for Reaper that she can see him, and he stands in her path and says it’s no use denying it. He notes that it took him ten years to find her because she moved (uh, can reapers not use the internet?), and she asks if she’s supposed to die when she’s only nineteen.

“People die at nine, and people die at ten. That’s death,” Reaper says. He can sense someone protecting her though, and asks who it is this time. They both look over, and Shin is standing there.

Eun-tak runs over to Shin in a panic, but instead of hiding behind him, she covers Shin’s eyes protectively and tells him not to meet the grim reaper’s eyes. He looks at her intently, and then lowers her hands and pulls her behind him.

Reaper asks what he’s doing, and Shin says he’s interfering in human life and death, which Reaper calls a big mistake. But before he can say that Eun-tak was supposed to die, lightning and thunder roar overhead, as if Shin is displaying his anger. Shin shoots him a thought telepathically, and warns Reaper to be careful, or else he’ll start to concern himself with Reaper’s life and death too.

Eun-tak suggests a quick getaway and tries to pull Shin along with her, only to bounce right back. Shin says that Reaper can’t take her, even if he’s been searching for her for a hundred years: “No reaper can take someone who said she’d marry a goblin, and before a goblin’s eyes at that.”

Eun-tak’s eyes widen, and she quickly tells the reaper that she’s the goblin’s bride. Sirens sound nearby and Reaper has to get to work, and suggests talking to both of them about this another time.

As soon as the reaper is gone, Eun-tak lets out a shaky breath and says she knew Shin was a goblin. He says he lied about it because he thought he’d never see her again. “Who knew you’d come inside my door, where no one has ever followed me in before?” he asks. We’re not talking about portals, are we?

He says that the truth wouldn’t have mattered because she’s not the goblin’s bride, and Eun-tak asks with tears in her eyes what she is then, when ghosts tell her she’s the goblin’s bride and reapers tell her she should be dead. “What am I?” she asks.

Shin says it’s not his concern and she gets angry at that and accuses him of lying because she’s not pretty enough to be his bride. But he says readily, “You’re pretty. I’ve lived over nine hundred years. I’m not looking for someone who’s pretty; I’m looking for someone to discover something about me.”

He says she should consider it a good thing, because if she had been the bride, she would’ve ended up resenting him a great deal. He says he’s telling her the truth now because he wants her to stop summoning him with false hope, and says that he’s leaving this place soon.

She starts to ask where he’s going, and then declares that she doesn’t care, and she never wanted to be his bride anyway, because she’s only nineteen and she’s not crazy. She starts to walk away and then turns back, but he’s already gone.

At home, Reaper asks if Shin is going to die at last, but Shin says it’ll regretfully have to wait, since Eun-tak can’t see the sword in his chest. Reaper points out that she might not see it yet, or that he might have to be naked first, though he seems concerned about the girl’s age. Then let’s not joke about the nakedness!

Reaper wonders why Shin is protecting the girl if she’s not the bride, and Shin just tells him to let her live since she’s already skated by. But Reaper’s not about to have a missing person on his watch, and says he can’t live with a goblin that’s messing with his work. Shin welcomes him to move out.

Eun-tak decides to read up on goblins, though the only place she can really do that is in children’s books. A little girl comes by to ask Eun-tak why a big unni like her is in the kids’ section, and Eun-tak calls it a background search on her boyfriend. “It’s like Facebook-stalking. You’ll do this when you’re older too,” she explains.

The little girl asks if her boyfriend is a knight on a white horse, and Eun-tak sighs that it’d be nice, scowling at the pictures of goblins on her books. She gets angry thinking about Shin’s words to her and decides that she doesn’t care anymore, and sticks her maple leaf in one of the books and leaves it at the bookstore.

But as soon as she’s gone, a hand reaches out for the book she left it in…

At home, Shin gets up in excitement when he smells smoke, thinking that Eun-tak has summoned him again. He stands up to prepare himself, but then nothing happens. He turns the corner to find Deok-hwa smoking, and he quickly puts out the cigarette and says that Uncle smoked and quit once too. Shin shouts that it was it was 350 years ago.

That night, Reaper comes out wearing a sleeping cap again, thanks to Shin, and asks Deok-hwa what’s going on in the house because it’s suddenly moist and cloudy inside. Ha, this must be what Deok-hwa was referring to with the humidity, because Shin is literally hanging out with a dark cloud hanging over him and glowing a fiery blue.

Deok-hwa asks Uncle to quit before it rains in here, and Reaper deduces that he’s thinking about a girl, most likely because of a marital spat. Deok-hwa is shocked to hear that Shin has a girl and that she’s nineteen, but his only concern seems to be whether she’s pretty. Shin gets mad at Reaper for blabbing in front of the kid and calls him a grim reaper in front of Deok-hwa, whose eyes widen in alarm.

Deok-hwa advises Shin to just man up and apologize if he hurt a girl’s feelings, and suggests showering her with gifts. Shin responds by tying him up on the stairs like a hostage.

Goblin and Reaper head out of the house at the same time, and Shin ends up tailing Reaper all the way to Eun-tak’s house. When Reaper says she isn’t home, Shin accuses him of killing her. Reaper gets wholly offended at the notion that reapers kill, while Shin says it’s also rude to enter people’s homes with your shoes on.

Reaper asks huffily if Shin told Eun-tak to move, and Shin says she moved on her own, satisfied that Reaper can’t find her now.

Eun-tak stays the night at the chicken shop, and comforts herself by saying that Aunt’s house was never her home anyway.

Suddenly remembering something, Eun-tak runs out to the street in search of the ghost that called her the goblin’s bride, and she asks how the ghost knew. She takes her to another ghost, who tells Eun-tak about the night that the goblin saved Eun-tak and her mother. She realizes then that she’d never have been born if it weren’t for Shin. Meanwhile Shin watches over her that night, but keeps his distance.

Eun-tak’s aunt goes charging into Sunny’s chicken shop (momentarily stunned by her beauty, ha) and demands to know where her precious niece is. Sunny doesn’t bat an eyelash at the rude aunt and calls her girlfriend in a fake accent and asks if “oppa” still beats up anyone, man or woman. Aunt goes running instantly, and Sunny’s friend asks if she’s gone nuts.

It turns out that the reason Aunt is so obsessed with Eun-tak’s bankbook and insurance payout is because she has loan sharks after her for debt, and when they hunt her down at home, Aunt swears that Eun-tak’s mom had a hefty insurance plan, but she just doesn’t know where Eun-tak is hiding the money.

The gangsters simply find out where Eun-tak goes to school, and haul her into their car, kicking and screaming.

Over dinner, Shin asks Reaper how he can afford twenty years’ rent on this house, and Reaper says he’s been collecting the money that loved ones leave to the dead for the last three hundred years. Shin thinks it’s quaint to save money, bragging that he has lots of gold, and Reaper sends Shin’s steak flying out the window. Shin laughs and says he just threw out a plate from the time of Louis XIV.

The fight escalates to the point that everything on the table is floating in the air above them, knife and fork hovering close to each of their heads.

The loan sharks rip through all of Eun-tak’s belongings in the car, in search of the bankbook. She notices the driver lighting a cigarette and leaps forward to blow out the flame, but she misses and the lighter falls to the floor.

The loan shark says that either Eun-tak or Aunt is lying and raises a hand to hit her, and when Eun-tak ducks for cover, the goblin’s mark on her neck starts to glow. Shin can sense something amiss and suddenly drops everything.

In the car, the loan shark tells Eun-tak to remember where that bankbook is, because she ought to know that taking a young girl into a remote area can only mean bad things. She screams and begs for help.

Suddenly the car comes to a screeching halt, and one by one the streetlights go out, surrounding them in darkness. And through the fog, two men appear in the street, strutting towards the car in slow-motion, perfectly backlit by a full moon.

Eun-tak looks up to see Shin and the grim reaper, walking side by side to come save her.

 
COMMENTS

They came together! I mean, I’m obviously glad that Shin came to save Eun-tak, but I’m so much more excited by the fact that goblin and reaper came together. This is the start of a beautiful friendship, and so many buddy cop antics down the road. I can’t wait for Yoo Inna to get in on the hijinks either, because her character is so weird and perfect for the deadpan reaper. But it’s the goblin-reaper relationship I like most so far, because they’re so delightfully petty and childish, but with the power of gods and centuries of life under their belts. It’s also helpful that they’re not so familiar with each other, because it’s an easy way to learn about the two types of mythical beings if they’re testing each other’s limits and getting into pissing contests, over everything from underwear to Eun-tak’s life and death.

Storywise, it’s great to have reaper and goblin at odds over the bride, but it’ll be an even richer conflict if the reaper gets to know her as a person too, and stops seeing her as just unfinished business. The reaper’s presence also adds a nice bit of tension, because I find it curious that Eun-tak isn’t afraid of Shin at all, not even a little, but her reaction to Reaper is very different, and I liked what we saw when the three of them were together. It must just be a winning combination to have goblin and reaper together in any scene, because the three-way bromance with Deok-hwa is great too. I died laughing when the goblin’s brooding turned out to make actual clouds—this kind of metaphor made literal through the goblin’s supernatural powers is what I like most about the show, because it’s funny, but it’s built into the mythology, and isn’t just wordplay.

I’m really glad that the mythology feels rich and full, because I tend to find many of Kim Eun-sook’s dramas written purely around the one glory moment (as in the heroic entrance through the fog, which we’ve seen from her before). But goblins and gods and reapers make for a world with instant life-and-death stakes from the start, and I’m captivated by the lonely lives of these immortals who are stunted by very human emotions. I like the idea that the drama is really about lonely immortals being less lonely with friends, and still having very human needs at the end of the day—everything from rent money, to food, to friendship, to love. The everyday humanness of their lives is what makes the characters endearing, despite their epic powers. You might be an almighty god who can smite thy enemy, but you still become a neurotic little boy in front of a girl who piques your curiosity, and you still seek fashion advice from your roommate for what to wear when she calls. I thought you were cool, goblin, but now that I know you’re not, I think I might love you.

 
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When I saw the drama "Goblin" next to dramas GF recaps on the team dramabeans what we are watching post, I was super excited. Was wondering whether it was true, and it was!

So, I have a question (which probably doesn't have an answer?).
How do ghosts escape the Grim Reaper and wander around? Does he lose track of someone's soul once the soul leaves the death location? When do ghosts decide to stop wandering? Like her mom could bid farewell before going.
And did Kim Shin's soul also wander during the time between his death and his resurrection as a goblin, or did his soul remain within the sword? because no one could tend to his corpse after his death? is that how ghosts are made?
I also just realized she knows her mom died because when she lit the candles... it should leave shadows... mom has no shadow. shivers.
I'm glad it was clarified that it wasn't just the flame blowing out for summoning. He has to also be thought of. the first time she did it, was wishing on the cake and asking in earnest for some divine help. then, she thought of him after chicken shops rejected her and blew the fire out. then thought of him again each time she blew the flame. Am I getting it right?

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ANW, forget the lore, in terms of characters, I'm glad that to compensate for old grump goblin, and implacable grim reaper, we've got one perky euntak, and one smartmouth impertinent deok hwa (ironic that because his ancestors have been so servile in the past, his bloodline prospered up until him to the point that he now has the audacity to talk back in banmal to their "master" lol. I know he used banmal since he met the Goblin because he didn't like that Kim Shin was talking in banmal to his gramps, but I still think it's interesting that while his ancestors and gramps all used an archaic form of reverent address with Kim Shin, he compensates their servility all on his own using banmal, intentional on his part or not. his bloodline has come a long way from the small child with coarse and injured hands to a gold-spooned brat who doesn't know how to bow well to others and even give advice on girls. lol.). I've got a feeling Sunny is going to be as irreverent as deokhwa and euntak in her own manner. it's because of their irreverence that the 3 will be able to pierce through goblin and reaper's poise methink.

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Speaking of Deok Hwa, it was his hand that reached out to grab the book with the maple leaf in it. And, he didn't seem to think it was odd that a Grim Reaper was standing in front of him...LOL

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Oh? I thought he had an "oh shit" face when he found out LDW was the Grim Reaper.

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I definitely saw that face!

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@Kia & Lola

Hi-five! I saw the face too. It was after the ?? face when he realized Goblin was showing all his powers to Grim Reaper. After that was "ooops" face.

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What I meant was, he got it over it too quickly...among other things.

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"among other things" Must be side effect from being concerned mainly with girls. No space in the head to be concerned on other issues and be judgemental. lolz

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Speaking of Deok Hwa #2

did the subs get it right when the tombs are all of grandchild of grandchild of grandchild? then what happens to the in-between generation?

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Perhaps there were no sons in between generations?

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Practically speaking, having the servants skip generations probably just adds to the continuity of the service and limits training time. You don't need to replace one perfectly good servant until he his no longer able to serve. At that point, the son would be too old (cutting years off of his time to serve) so you jump to the grandson, who is younger and has more years left to serve.

If you think about it, other than the scary part of trying not to anger your boss, the job would be pretty cushy. The goblin is going to make sure nothing happens to you so you live a long life and takes care of you in style (at least somewhat?)

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I thought the same that it was Deok Hwa who took the book, but the question is why we saw this scene, was it was important we see it?, does there is more that met the eye with Deok Hwa, or is the book, or is the leaf?.

Also why Eun Tak is the bride is all because she was saved by our moody/lonely Goblin, he gave her life so can can take hers, if she can't see the sword yet is do because she has not fall in love with him yet? I have few more ? Can't wait to discover the answers in weeks to come.

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I think Eun-tak is the goblins bride because (like you say), Shin gave her life when she was destined to die. But because he has killed so many in the past, his punishment is immortality. I guess resurrecting mom and Eun-tak means that he is compensating for the lives he has taken. So he is bestowed upon his bride, who can return him his mortality.

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I KNOW! And this supposedly before Deok Hwa knows about Shin's new crush... Have the generations of assistants been passing down information and now Deok Hwa is a whole lot more knowledgable than Shin suspects?

He's also got Hot Granny on his side, so there's definitely more happening with Deok Hwa than being a hilariously disrespectful grifter.

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There seem to be something more with Deok Hwa's character I just cant complete my thoughts on what its gonna be. I have to wait for a few more episodes and see it unfold.

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Yoo inna is extremely pretty and that ost, 'stay is me', is hauntingly memorable.

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And still speaking of Deok-hwa, anyone notice that Yoo Deok-hwa = 유덕화=劉德華= Andy Lau? For those who don't know who he is, he is a well known Hong Kong actor/singer. The Korean media refer to him as Yoo Deok-hwa.

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In the Vlive presscon (or could be the drama-talk Vlive), KES said she chose that name because she was a fan. She chose Euntak because it sounded fresh and young. She chose Kim Shin as the character she cherished and had meaning from another movie.

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OMG YES. I thought I was the only one who noticed the Andy Lau thing! I burst out laughing when I saw the name and I legit thought it was a troll until I saw the name sticking hahah

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Also, in the scene where he meets the Reaper just outside the house didnt he swear his allegiance to him by saying, "i will always be on your side, i promise" ! Add that to the fact that the Reaper collects what is vowed to him?!!!
Maybe, hopefully, i'm just overthinking this

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Maybe ghosts escape by not taking the drink? One way or another, I figure they haven't forgotten their lives.

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perhaps? or like ghosts don't go to the light after taking the drink so ghosts don't forget memories until after walking to the light?

Btw, I was rewatching ep1, and that woman-ghost euntak searched for to explain to her about the goblin-bride tale was at the hospital's window with other ghosts during her birth as an extra.

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Good spot! Now I wonder if her sweater dress is a little too modern for being dead so long, though. Hah! Over-analyzing here we come!

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It is probably like other dramas in that dead people with resentments or unfinished business wander away from their bodies before a reaper appears. Just like Eun tak's mother's spirit wasn't at the hospital when the reaper came for her. She probably returned to the hospital after she delivered her final messages, but other spirits may continue to roam around. Our God of Death seems to be particularly conscientious in his work.

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I agree about our Reaper. He doesn't get the "death certificates" for everyone, there are many more like him who could have arrived after their...um..."clients" left.

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Also was hoping the recapper would explain his picture on the gravestone. Is it for when he dies after he finds his bride? Why was there no name on it? Does he live, age, die and is reborn? Or does he just not age? Why does he disappear and reappear after 20 years? These are things I was looking for in the recap. Somebody please help me with the answer!

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Shin appears to be the age at which he was killed (mid-30s). For some presumably supernatural reason, he retained that appearance when he was resurrected decades later and made immortal. He does not age, whereas his mortal human servants do.

To conceal the fact that he does not age like a normal human, he has hit upon shuttling between continents for a couple of decades at a clip and returning with a new identity, presumably after anyone who knew him has moved away or died. That way no single mortal sees him remain the same age alongside his young "nephew," who will grow older and look like his "brother," then older still and be able to pass as his "father," and then finally look like his elderly "grandfather." Lather, rinse, repeat -- ad infinitum. That's the modus operandi I've been able to figure out.

It saves him the bother of fooling around with disguises. Plus, he probably needs a periodic change of venue really badly. Dude's already 935 years old. Sticking around in the same place would be really boring... and lead to terrible localized flooding. ;-)

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Makes sense. Especially the flooding :)

Next time, he should come to Southern California. We could use some extra rain.

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Thanks! Makes sense. He wasn't resurrected til decades later? How did I miss that??

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Same comment. Decades later? Nah.

Methinks Shin was resurrected right after (or maybe a few days after) he was killed. I inferred this from the Grandpa servant apologising for being late because he was ill.

And the first thing the resurrected Shin did was to kill the eunuch who egged the king to declare Shin a traitor and kill him and his family. The eunuch looked the same age as when he was first shown.

My question is who was the dead that was wrapped mummy-like in the scene where Shin said "I am too late." The king? Maybe there will be some explanation/elaboration on this in future episodes?

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I think the dead was the Queen and he said he's too late because now that he's become immortal and powerful, he can't do anything about it.

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To dramabliss, I assume the wrapped body is that of the king. I think the Goblin wanted to avenge the Queens and his family members' deaths, and to also demand an explanation from the king. That's how I see it. But I feel that he was resurrected years after he was killed. The eunuch seems to have aged, and for some reason grown a whiter beard.

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I think he was resurrected decades later because notice that when he goes to take his revenge, the eunuch seems much older. Further, I am pretty sure that the wrapped corpse belonged to the king and that maybe Shin meant that he was too late to kill him with his own hands. I mean, he already knew about the queen's death then why would he think he was late?

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I understood it completely different from everyone. The wrapped corpse is the King. He didn't say "It's too late" because he wanted the King killed for revenge. Shin is a loyal subject. He meant it as in, he was too late to PREVENT the King from dying. He knew the Eunuch was corrupted and evil and might kill or have the King killed after he was gone. The young King is jealous and fearful and easily manipulated by the Eunuch. I don't think Shin blames the King for the death of his family, but rather the Eunuch who was pulling the strings behind the scene.

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Thank you!
Your analysis really sounds spot-on. You've given some well explained and logical sounding answers to questions I've had along the way. Mahalo. :)

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Ah I didn't think of this! I assumed it was the Queen and was suprised when the Grandpa died etc. Now this all makes sense.

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This was really well said. Thanks! :)

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During the scene where the Reaper was drinking coffee with his colleague (?) in a coffee shop the colleague mentioned 'reapers' so I think he's not the only one to collect souls and maybe a few other reapers were rather negligent in their job, that's why there are ghosts wandering around? XD

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I do think that there are many reapers who are going about collecting souls and also there are other goblins as well.
I'm more curious about goblins actually. Is the Halmonni/Siren one too ?? Why does she have the ring of Shin's sis(?) ? How can she change her appearance ??

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Korean audiences (and DB readers from recap 1) are supposed to recognize the grandmother as a Korean deity, in charge of fertility (which is why she said to Euntak when the little girl asked her the reason she was helping her she was happy when she blessed Euntak's mother with her child)

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Oh thanks?! But she does have the ring which made me think in this line. Well i'll just have to wait for tge show's explanation on that front to i guess .

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Wasn't the whole "if you think of me" thing an excuse he made up so he could go see her?

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Nope, he can't be summoned if Eun-tak only thinks of him, she has to put out fire as well

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I thought so too, since he wasn't summoned like the other times. He showed up on his own will and used "because you thought about me" as an excuse so that it wouldn't seem like he wanted to see her.

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If you need more info on grim reapers and ghosts - just watch Arang and the Magistrate. :)

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I have one question. Actually can normal human being see grim reaper or not?
In episode 1, reaper seems shocked when he found out that Eun Tak can see him but latter reaper living the same house with Deok Hwa who is normal human being (i guess?) but still can see Grim reaper? someone can help me about this?^^"

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In episode 2, when Kim Shin makes fun of Grim Reaper's hat, he said it was so that humans could not see him. He was wearing the hat when he went to Euntak's house in Episode 1, so he was surprised.

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The end of ep1 / start of #2 boils down to "I love you. I'll marry you. Because you can get me into Canada." Sounds right to me, especially now, but HOW DID THEY KNOW!??? The Canada stuff was filmed before the election.

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yeah, I'm glad it was clarified later that it was more than just "I want to be ur wife bc u have magic powers." I'm glad it's less romantic reasons like he's hot, and more because being the goblin's wife would give purpose and meaning to her miserable life so far. her mother's death is on her bd. she's been orphaned with a crap aunt to raise her, and spoiled cousins. ostracized at school. has received no love at all since her mother died. so I get how she clang to the idea that she was someone's bride. that the cause of her ghost-seeing which has caused her to be isolated from all might have a reason for it. that she hasn't suffered for nothing.

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On the flip side, I'm glad the love story is more than "I love you my bride because you will release me from my tragic fate." Our goblin cares about Euntak even though she can't see the sword and can't help him. She doesn't seem to benefit him, but despite what he said to her, he isn't that coldhearted. Saving him isn't the only thing Euntak's good for.

I don't feel the OTP yet, but I can watch the handsome duo giving each other backhanded remarks all day xD. I'll never be tired of Grim Reaper claiming to go to the dry cleaner for a hat and Goblin sneering at his roommate's occupational disease xDD

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@Lord Cobol
He he,love "trumps" all doesn't apply to the elections, or ...... does it?
Perhaps the writer is more political than we thought!
P.S. lovely name. BSG?

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No, old Cobol programmer. Started using that moniker on game forums before the good BSG existed.

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Haha-- yeah, running away to Canada does have a certain extra resonance as fantasy for some of us US viewers these days...

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People, I'm still fanning myself after that end sexy-winter-coat-walk-of-badassry. One part of me was like "omg so cheesy" and the other (way more dominant part) was squealing with glee.

I can't stop marveling over how this show is so gorgeous. The Quebec parts made me want to go visit Quebec City and Montreal again.

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YES added with that song they played, the OSTs and instrumental are glorious in this drama

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Speaking of which does anyone know the song they were playing when the Goblin and the Grim Reaper were doing their shouldering catwalk down that road? Not the one they played right at the end by Chanyeol and Punch, but the one in English before that. I've been trying to Shazam it multiple times to effect!

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No idea, but patience, grasshopper, bc I'm sure they'll release the OSTs soon!

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The fact that i was not the only one that did this makes me feel better

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Trust me, we are not the only ones. I've seen so many comments under the youtube version of that tvN scene looking for the same song. So far no luck yet tho :/

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I honestly came here looking for the song XD

no luck still :(

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Is it the opening theme? If it is, then it's Hush by Lasse Lindh. Ive googled the song but to no avail. I assume it's a new song especially made for this drama. Let's just wait. They will probably release it officially

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Lasse Lindh?! OMG. He's the guy that sang those awesome songs C'Mon Through, and The Stuff from Soulmate's OST! No wonder I was hearing something familiar from one of the songs, but couldn't put my finger on it.

I found this on reddit. The songs that have featured so far are:

Chanyeol (EXO) x Punch - Stay With Me
Lasse Lindh - Hush
10cm - 내 눈에만 보여

Apparently a lot of people are having a hard time trying to find Hush and 10cm. Probably have to wait until it is officially released.

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me too. I've been looking everywhere for the song that played when they are doing their catwalk. I try shazam but it can't find the right song. please please whoever find it first let me know.

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The song is "Never Far Away". It hasn't been released and no idea who sings it. I'm counting down until they release it! It's totally beautiful.

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Yes! Hahaha, when I first saw the foggy heroic entrance scene in the stills and highlights video, I was like "omg, so cheesy and why bc they just did this in DotS!" But now seeing everything that led to that slo-mo walk/moment, I'm just swooning bc he sensed her in danger and he's coming to save her from the bad guys and kick some ass! Yeah! The bloodshot eyes of Shin's = shit's going down! CAN'T WAIT!

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I can honestly say I love her character here. She's nonchalantly cool, 3D but gentle. I like this char the most, compared to other character she played so far (which mostly annoying)

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Sunny, right? You've described her perfectly! ? "Nonchalantly cool, 3D but gentle" is such an accurate description! ????

She's a hoot so far and I'm lovin' her oddness, too. Can't wait to see more and hopefully they'll be some twists to her character like some viewers are predicting.

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Your right shit is about to go down. These loan sharks are about to learn what happens when humans act worse than beast. And how convenient, there's a GR on hand to explain to our friendly neighborhood loan shark all about their new accommodation.

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When Eun Tak was showing her birthmark to Shin by lifting her collar immediately brought me back to Secret Garden. Hyun Bin trying prove to Ha Ji Won that his cheesy jacket was expensive has been tattooed to my brain for all eternity. lol

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HAHAHAHA, I thought the exact same thing! And Sunny reminds me of Marvin, the manically depressed robot from Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Hee! I could watch the guys in this show act like five-year-olds all day, too.

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Marvin!

I can't remember the last time I LOLed at Marvin :)

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Thank you so much for recapping.

Loving it.

Favorite scene(s) .
Shin modeling for the most impressive boyfriend look, books that coordinate with his clothes CD vs LP, Impressionist vs. Post Modern.

Shin waiting around to be summoned with all the accessories close at hand.

Eun Tak protecting Shin from making contact with Big hat reaper.

Just loving it.

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eun tak is so lucky to have found such a great boss to work for

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That was pretty much I could take for...since ALL of her other encounters are just so horrible. Family, teachers (like, really...how did she get certified??), and friends (non existent friends). I'm so glad that her boss is awesome.

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I think that was the power of a wish granted by Goblin. It had to be perfect unlike a genies wish granting abilities. Also now she has moved out.
Her 3rd wish is maybe why Shin appeared infront of her in the first place. He just does not know that yet ;)

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Already in love with Yoo Inna. I wish she had more screen-time. It's a shame the main heroine is kinda boring. She's just the stereotypical poor, high-school student who's somehow ~*~*special*~*~ and unique and pretty. I mean the writer came up with Ra-im and Mo-yeon, so why is t his heroine so boring???

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i like that YIA's screen time is less because it makes me want to see more of her, i was waiting and waiting this whole episode for her to appear and wasn't even sure if she was going to. I don't mind the reduced screen time for now but it better not last.

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+10000 on the lead heroine.

I really need to see more of Sunny. The relaxed, slacker feel coupled with her ethereal beauty is very nice.

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+1 on wanting more of Sunny / Yoo In-na.

And Yoo In-na has ditched the horrible hair she had in One More Happy Ending (at least at the start -- I didn't make it to the end).

Sunny can't remember the last time this or the last time that. What, she has amnesia already?

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I love Yoo Inna in this! In Sin City's universe, she would be the classic tragic femme fatale that attracts all sort of troubles. In dramaland, she's the hilarious femme fatale that stirs up troubles for poor Grim Reaper xD

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+1 For Yoo In Na
Just give this girl a lead role already!..

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she's got Queen Inhyun's Man and My Secret Hotel...

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Yeah..I've watched QIM..I must've said 'Give her another leading role and enough with supporting characters'

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leading role isn't everything. it's better for actors/ress to chose role that suites them and explores their ability. Go Hyunjung was offered leading in Queen Seondeok, however she declined and chose villain role (Lady Mishil) instead. she got Daesang awards for it.

I'm happy Yoo Inna playing second in this drama. I hope my boss tell me to slack off too!!!

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+1 to your comment about YIA, I thought she has already graduated to leading lady level. I guess she plays the roles she wants too, she's an awesome actress.

Don't really agree about our heroine though, she might not be the most interesting but that doesn't subtract anything from her as a character. I find Ra-im badass, but I connect to Eun-tak more.

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guys any guesses how they'll include a subway PPL in this drama?

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Reaper will open a subway shop instead of a teahouse, and then offer the dead a sandwich instead of tea. Either that, or they'll be in a subway store when the bride pulls out the sword.

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Lol omg, stop! That's too much. But that'd be hilarious if grims offered memory-wiping Subway sandwiches instead of tea!

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Haha! Still we can't get over that subway sandwiches! LOL!

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That's great advertising. "Subway: one bite to heaven"
Those that don't eat will have to stay in the pits of hell.

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Hahaha, there ya go! THAT'S your slogan! ???????

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+10000

???
Nice one, Rosepetal! ?

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Well I am guessing Yo Inna would not like chicken from her own shop, and take Eun Tak for a more "proper meal", hence subway! Plus it could be like- for the calorie conscious, for people who want to look hot like me- eat at subway! :P

Oh, or the Goblin and the Grim Reaper could have one of their food fights at subway! What I wouldn't give to see subs and salads flying along with soft drinks! (Might be a counter- productive PPL but what the hell) :D

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I highly doubt this is gonna happen. Olive Chicken is one of this show's sponsors... so they're not gonna make their sponsor look bad, right...

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Sunny has been going on and on about how the chicken shop has no customer and stale business. If Olive is very strict with advertising, they wouldn't want such negative association with their brand. Thus in this case, I think Olive is being flexible (and possibly playful); something along the line of, "I don't care how you represent me, as long as I'm in the drama".

I seriously hope to see flying subs and salad too. I can already imagine Shin and the reaper in the midst if it. Come on Subway, impress me!

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I could see the Reaper, perhaps on a date with Sunny, eating a nice salad at Subway because he seems to be herbivorous... But I sincerely doubt that the Divinity who dines on rare steak served on Louis XIV porcelain would deign to darken the doorway. ;-)

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The prim and proper goblin will set foot in Subway joint if Eun Tak dragged him there. Heh.

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I honestly don't know bc all of the subway ppls in other dramas have been so blantantly obvious and obnoxious that idek how goblin's gonna do it. I have to admit, I'm really appreciating the subtle ppl in the drama so far. I almost never notice it right away–which is good bc that would mean it's taking away from the drama–and have to do a double take or look closely at the brands and product placements. That said, I've definitely noticed a few but I'm really glad and proud that it's subtle and they don't make a big deal out of it. It's just like, "okay, here's the brand, now here's gong yoo again"

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ERIC NAMMMM lulz

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Ha, ha! It's all I can do to keep up with reading the subtitles, much less notice anything else! Needs you to point out things I don't see with the first run through...

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I saw that Subway was one of the sponshop sors. I just hope there is no subway shop date. I actually like Paris Baguette. How come they can't do drama sponsoring for crying out loud. They do much better food.

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Might be Shin will dream of a picnic date in beautiful hilly park either in Quebec, Paris or Seoul a la K2. *shudders*

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Hahaha holiday in subway land version 2 proudly sponsored in Goblin.

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Okay, I am liking this show a lot in terms of back story, cinematography, history and mysteriousness of the characters. Editing and transitions can improve a bit.

But I am going to be the unpopular opinion fairy, and express my dislike for Eun Tak's character. I commented yesterday on how I was disappointed in the character, but by Episode 2, I outright disliked it. They made her over-the-top bubbly, I felt like I was seeing every typical annoying anime high school girl or watching Cinderella and the 4 knights again.

KGE is a good actress and believable as a High school girl, but that's about it. I found myself fast forwarding all the bits where Eun Tak was speaking on and on and on.

I hope things get better. Chirpy and cute can be done well, and not so contrived, I hope the character growth improves the character.

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KGE is a good actress and believable as a High school girl, but that’s about it.'

I think all your opinions on the heroine kind of pulls the line here , you don't like KGE as an actor much ,maybe? Once you said the heroine is too talkative, too cheerful, and again, I wonder if the heroine was somewhat different as a character, would you still like her? Considering KGE acting as her? Sometimes either we like the heroine, or hate her. Like I could not warm up to song hye kyo's character in DOTS, as she always looks like someone who's quite cold inside and out to me. So I would never like her, even if her role is tailor made and is the loveliest girl in the world. So, maybe it's not about the character but the actor?

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I've seen 2 films of KGE and absolutely adore her as an actress. However, she got the short end of the stick here with such a stock character role.

My 'thats about it's should have been more oriented towards the character rather than the actor. Yes, she fits the role of a high school girl well, she is doing what is expected of the role. However, with her kind of talent, this role is a disservice and I also expect more nuance from both the writer and actor.

If they made this character more serious, and with more depth, I think KGE could have shined much much more.

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If they made this character more serious, and with more depth, I think KGE could have shined much much more.'
--

Oh I have a better idea of where you're coming from now. Yeah, but may be it's because at the reply of every cheesy statement of ET, Shin is so serious and gravely answers all her questions, with calm and composed manner, I feel they're two opposites, and that's just what clicks for me, I empathize more, maybe because of my clear biased support for the two actors lol, I admit. If both of them were serious, and matured don't know if it would have been better or not. But one thing is clear, Eun Tak is brave and champion of her own, other wise she would not have been staying with that b*tch of an aunt of hers and surviving through all that tease and taunts.
I do understand what you want from ET, but coming from KGE, I'm more pleasantly surprised, since she has been working in films, and has done all kind of genres, like 'muse', so the fact that she can do cheesy too, just makes me more impressed, it's hard work pulling off the cliches too, haha. Also she looks so pretty, and cute. Ha. Okay I will stop now lol.

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Hopefully her over chirppiness stems from needing to defray the pain inflicted by aunt. Im sure things will get more sombre once she realises she has to pull that sword...

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I think it's all a matter of personal experience. Cause I don't see her chirpiness as contrived or overdone. It's my first time seeing KSE act (I stayed faaaar away from Cheese after seeing all the drama on NB) and I like it so much because I relate with her ET's personality. :D :D :D

I mean, since when is chirpy bad? Screechy or dull would be bad. I would get that. But chirpy? In my mind, unless your personality is like Grim Reaper so you can't stand chirpy, that I would get. :D :D :D Okay, I'm biased because all my group of friends would qualify as chirpy. When we gather together, all we do is talk talk talk, forget everything else. :D :D :D

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As a high school student myself, I find that Kin Go-Eun is portraying the character very well. We all feel kinda helpless at times, her with her family and ghost-seeing abilities and me with [insert personal issues], but at the end of the day, we find ourselves clinging to the hope that it'll all work out, and try to live in the moment and hope for the future. Kim Go-Eun's portrayal of Eun-Tak, fresh with vitality and spirit, was exactly that, and it starkly contrasts with the centuries old goblin who wishes only for death. Storywise(logically), they make a great couple.

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+10000000000 and alpha for Julz

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I never thought of it like that. Brilliant!

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It's probably that they will fast forward a few years and she becomes a mature woman by the time they meet again. The poster does show her in a more mature outfit, but who knows.

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I thought her character was too talkative / pushy / annoying, especially in Canada.
I'm no expert, but I'd *guess* it's the director's or writer's fault, not the actress.

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I complete agree with you. I skipped forward a lot of scenes because of the character.

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Lord C, I felt the same way... and am having delayed flashbacks to NAEIL'S CANTABILE. ;-)

The little motor mouth drove me bonkers... and triggered a nearly-forgotten memory: Gag me with a spoon! @1:57 below -- which is probably how Eun-tak would have sounded if she were born about 20 years earlier. Now I can't get it out of my head. Groady!

Frank & Moon Zappa – “Valley Girl” (Barking Pumpkin) 1982
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qBPfbsyHABc

Upon further reflection, I think that 9.4 JoyNumberTwo is right on the money about Eun-tak's adolescent vocalizations serving as a baseline against which to depict future maturation. As other Beanies have pointed out, her overly-perky talk and behavior serves as a foil for Kim Shin's measured, formal speech... and also indicates her overcompensation for the sad and frustrating aspects of her miserable existence.

I must be a glutton for punishment because I never fast-forward through stuff like this. I don't want to miss anything, and figure it's there for a reason, even if I don't like it. And, like banging my head against the wall, it feels so good once it stops... I'm hoping we don't have to hear too much more of it.

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Ditto on having Naeil Cantabile flashbacks. I was praying for her to be just stop talking, especially in Canada.

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I think her character is adorable. The unbridled happiness at being in Canada was actually delightful. Those who keep putting her character down for being "bubbly" are just envious of her ability to let herself express joy. As was mentioned, her life has been and still is a very hard one. She grabbed the CANADA experience w/ gusto and literally ran w/it:)

Gong Yoo is doing great! He's fierce, funny, aloof, implacable and tender. Gee, what a well rounded guy. How many centuries did that take? And we get frustrated w/mortal men for...well, acting......normal.

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Well personally, if I did find myself transported to Canada just by opening a door, I'd probably do the same. Heck, I'd probably be worse and squeal my lungs out. ?

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Teen girls (and women) DO suddenly get bubbly around cute guys. Even more if she's seeing him as a handsome, rich, escape from her life of misery. Heck, I'm 57 hearts old and if Gong Yoo showed up in front of me dressed as a penniless bum, I'd be a hair twirlin', hair flippin', smiling fool.

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Swypo: "57 years" not "57 hearts" although that feels about right too.

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She isn't by a long shot a one note character. In Canada she was excited and thrilled by the wonder of actually being somewhere she thought she could only dream about. Have you never felt that feeling of complete giddiness? She acknowledges it to him after they return and thanks him. She was certainly mature enough to sit quietly for a length of time on the hill while he paid his respects. She thinks and empathize with others despite her teasing talk.
She is a young girl who blossoms under the slightest bit of positive attention as she has been so deprived since her mother died.

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??????
??????
???

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@kbas -- Totally agreed with you! I've been a mentor for teenagers for about a decade, and have seen enough teens that literally bounce up and down when taken into somewhere that are beyond their expectations. Have seen it also with my own kids, though they're much younger than teens. As for me, I've never found that to be annoying, instead something in my heart just warms up cause it's nice to see them so happy like that.

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I actually loved the scenes in Canada. Since it's the place where the Goblin has buried all of his servants/butlers or whatever you call them, it's a bittersweet place for him. To have ET's energy and brightness really adds a nice new memory of the place for him. He's lived so long having to remember all these deaths, when was the last time he really enjoyed where he was at? By association he got to experience, or at least watch someone he kinda cares about (or piques his interest) roaming around carefree and super excited. And once he told her to stay at the hotel, she did't follow him. She let him do his own thing that he wanted to when she could've summoned him back. Even when she did find him she left him to his own thoughts until he was ready. She even apologized after their mini trip was done for anything stupid she did. Some of those Canada scenes made me think of her as an understanding and thoughtful person under that chipper exterior. Her character might be really bright but I don't think she's overly talkative/pushy/annoying. Like others said it might be her way to mask the crap she's gone through but we'll see in later episodes! Who knows though, I may just be overanalyzing everything! LOL

On another note, those scenes were darn pleasing aesthetically though and made me want to go visit again. :)

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The thing is, when I see the main heroine act cute, I know that she is 'acting' and that says much about it. She should tone it down a bit because it doesn't feel natural at all.

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Weirdly enough I think it's the character that's acting cute not KGE. Euntak 'acts' cute and it's not convincing cos she's a girl who doesn't have happiness or hope in her dictionary. She's forced but that's because she's forcing herself to push on through her crappy life.

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Lola, I agree with you. Look at the difference in the way she is with her family versus the goblin.

Also, it seems all of the characters are rather exaggerated. I wasn't sure until we saw Sunny, but she is odd to the nth degree. Goblin mopes so much that clouds form in the house. ET gets extra giddy (like any teenager would) Reaper is super deadpan. ET's family is over-the-top selfish and rude.

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I'd call it the fairy tale effect XD

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I think (actually, I hope) they did this deliberately. If she starts out as this bubbly, naive schoolgirl, it would make her gradually mature as her relationship with Shin also grows. I think they're already starting to show that: when she told him that she thought of how he has everything and yet he still looks sad. The same with her finding out from the girl ghosts about Shin saving her in her mother's womb (before knowing, she felt unlucky; after they told her, she realized how lucky she was to have lived and had been loved by her mom). She starts having these realizations after she gets to know more about him. After watching Shopping King, I've started to think of the lead character's growth from restless puppy mode as the Louie Effect.

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I love her to pieces and I am bias when it comes to my favorites but I do understand why you are annoyed by her character and maybe the way she portrays it too.

I think her over-the-top bubbly feels fake because she is faking it to cover up her miserable life. The only time that I felt that she was really happy was when she was in Canada. She was free and far away from her trouble home etc.
That's why she cried over that Quebec brochure when it was taken from her because it was the first time she felt real joy after losing her mother.

I'm not trying to convince anyone to like her. It's good to read other viewers thoughts who are different from my own.

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I like a lot this theory about Eun Tak making efforts to be cute and cheer up because she just wants to escape her sad reality. That would make the character 100 times more interesting and I would like to see the moment when she gets really angry and throws the cutesy act by the window.
I am hopeful that we will see some interesting development. They chose KGE after all and I hope it was because they needed a strong actress to portray a difficult role. Let's see what happens.

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Here is hoping!

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I'm with you there. She was way too annoyingly bubbly the first half and I'm tired of that cliched girl. But didn't she calm down a bit the second half?

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SLVR,

I agreed with your sentiment from episode 1- KGE can play the damaged, dark heroine so well that her seemingly simple character of Eun Tak (who could have been further elevated with more nuanced depth since there were such great glimpses of potential for it) somewhat seems like a downgrade? However, I was able to get glimpses of a very lonely, deprived, and hurt Eun Tak in this episode, particularly her interaction with the aunt, and see how that mirrors the very loneliness and exasperation the goblin must have experienced for many, many years. I see her chirpiness as a response mechanism to her gratitude (Canada scene), as well as her endurance to be positive in light of sucky circumstances. Her characterization, particularly her over-eagerness, is a representation of her persistent persona, making her quite mature as others have stated. I think this innocence allows for an endearing dongseng-oppa relationship now, so that it can believably morph into a romance later on. I dunno, I might just be holding on to hope that her character matures more but I think you're hitting on something--the show does a great job showing Gong Yoo's silly and serious moments, making him feel 3 dimensional and flawed but with KGE's character, we see small glimpses of her vulnerability and then a crap ton of cuteness that it seems disproportionate and I think THAT leads to what feels like an incomplete, "what could haves" with KGE's character.

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I'm finding KGE's character a lovely mixture of cuteness and maturity tbh. I love it that she's cute as peers of her age like bokjoo and bokshil with and underlying sense of maturity grown from her hardships and tragedy. I'm in the minority here but I like the fact that she is portrayed as more cute than tragic for a change. It cheers me up so much to see someone like her tbh.

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this +christmas.
I feel like I'm seeing deep nuances in her cuteness that others are missing. I find her character's cuteness portrayed with nuances I haven't seen in other iterations of cute heroines. Subtle but there and unique? I don't think her talents are being wasted. She might be good in acting damaged in other roles (I can't judge because I haven't seen her in other works but Cheese ep 1-7) but she's using her acting chops well as a cute with tragic backstory and realism. I'm finding her portrayal super engaging and real, something that can only be done with complexity and skillful acting.

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@Diane I know who Bokjoo is (I heart that drama right now!!) but who is Bokshil? I checked Asianwiki for the list of characters in the drama but I can't find a Bokshil?

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lol @neomuneomu bokshil is not in weightlifting drama. It's in an adorable drama called Shopping King Louis, check it out.
As for KGE's role, I don't think people are missing the nuances in her acting. Some just want different and darker nuances, but I like it as it is. It's going to be tragic enough without another darker character to boot.

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@ neomuneomu, my eyes popped out of my head at your not knowing Bok-shil. You MUST watch Shopping King Louie right away, you must! There you will find as most-adorable couple. It's absolutely worth it! Allow yourself to get settled with its off-kilter weirdness in episode one and part of episode two. It's worth it, I promise! ???

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Agreed. Also, people, don't forget that she IS just a high schooler. High schoolers can be annoying sometimes ;)

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