Radio Romance: Episode 6
Ah, friendship, isn’t it grand… or not. With PD Lee in charge, Su-ho is finding himself doing all sorts of things he doesn’t want to do for this radio show, and he’s bound by his promise to give it a month before quitting. Hopefully though, the lessons he’s learning will convince him that he has more to offer the world besides a pretty face and a fake smile.
EPISODE 6 RECAP
After Geu-rim’s tutoring session, she nods off on the desk in DJ Moon’s booth, and Su-ho watches her sleep. When she wakes, he says to her, “I’m curious about you.”
But before he can say anything else, Assistant PD Hoon-jung and Writer Ra’s PD Seung-soo enter the studio. Su-ho and Geu-rim dive under the desk and listen as Seung-soo orders Hoon-jung to hand over all of his show’s plans, and although Hoon-jung refuses, he admits that he’s unhappy working for PD Lee.
He asks Seung-soo why he didn’t recruit him to his team, pouting that he liked doing little to no work for Seung-soo. They go into the booth intending to retrieve PD Lee’s cue sheet, only to find Su-ho and Geu-rim innocently discussing their upcoming show, ha.
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Hoon-jung is a little snitch — he tattles to Geu-rim’s girlfriends that she and Su-ho worked all night at the station. They all assume something is going on between those two, and Tornado is particularly annoyed.
Since both shows have aired their first episodes, Station Manager Kang calls the leaders in to reveal which show earned the most listeners. He’s tickled at the high number of listeners the top show gained, and congratulates… PD Lee. PD Lee rubs it in that he won the coveted Sunday time slot, and announces that his show will be using DJ Moon’s booth from now on.
Over lunch, Geu-rim asks Su-ho what he meant when he said he’s curious about her, making him cough nervously. He can’t figure out how to answer, but he’s saved by PD Lee, who wedges himself between them and helps himself to Geu-rim’s sandwich. She complains that he’s always doing that, and when he goes for another bite, Su-ho grabs his face and feeds him his own lunch.
PD Lee decides they’re going somewhere today and Su-ho tries to decline, but PD Lee says they need him to procure a sponsor. The “sponsor” turns out to be DJ Moon, who refuses to let them use his studio and fusses at Geu-rim for bringing Su-ho to try to convince him.
They all make good arguments, such as Su-ho getting coaching from DJ Moon and being able to play his own music, which the other studio isn’t set up for. Geu-rim is particularly shameless, saying that if they use his booth, it means she’s succeeded.
DJ Moon notices that Su-ho isn’t speaking and asks why. Su-ho says that he doesn’t care because all booths are the same. Everyone winces, but DJ Moon shocks them by saying he’ll let them use his booth.
He adds a condition — that Su-ho go hiking with him every day so he can show him that not all booths are the same. PD Lee and Hoon-jung get the giggles, but Geu-rim is annoyed. She follows DJ Moon outside to whine that he asked Su-ho go hiking, since it’s something he only does with close friends, and DJ Moon’s explanation is, “Well, he’s cute!” Can’t argue with the man.
PD Lee informs Su-ho that there’s another sponsor they need to see today. Su-ho wants to go home, so PD Lee challenges him to a contest — whoever tosses their paper cup into a trash can first gets to decide. Su-ho can’t resist a chance to show up PD Lee, but he loses the toss.
PD Lee leads the team to a basement apartment where a scientist lives and works. The scientist makes skincare products, but he explains that he’s in so much debt that he can barely afford to eat. The final straw was when his girlfriend broke up with him, and he nearly smashed his equipment in frustration.
But instead, he wrote to the radio show, telling them that he’s out of research money and about to shut down. PD Lee says that they’ll buy his products and market them on the air, giving Su-ho all the credit.
Elsewhere, Jason gives a lecture using Su-ho as his patient example. He doesn’t say his name, but he talks about Su-ho’s insomnia and refusal to seek therapy. He says that his patient only engages in shallow relationships because he fears showing anyone his true self. But he adds that there’s been a change recently, as he’s met someone who leads him to make different choices.
Joon-woo reports to Su-ho’s mother that Su-ho seems pretty enmeshed with the radio team these days. He starts to say that Su-ho may be opening his heart to someone, but Mom interrupts and dismisses him.
As he’s leaving, Joon-woo overhears her talking on the phone to someone, and she mentions Tae-ri’s name. She’s sent Tae-ri to a club to see an executive, hoping to nab an advertisement job, but he insults her by saying that she’s not good enough. She insults his receding hairline and calls him a loser.
He slaps her and yanks her by the hair, but luckily Joon-woo walks in before things can get any worse. He pulls Tae-ri out to the hall, and when he sees that she was truly scared, he marches right back in. He bows and apologizes to the executive, then offers to pour him a drink with a positively shark-like smile.
As the man drinks, Joon-woo asks if he’ll hire Tae-ri for the commercial. He says he won’t, and Joon-woo asks why the man hit Tae-ri, his voice rising to a yell. He picks up the bottle of liquor threateningly, but he controls himself, pours the jerk another drink, and leaves.
Tae-ri stops him when he’d walk right past her, and she asks him for something. It’s unclear, but it sounds like Joon-woo has some evidence against her that he’s willing to trade in return for Tae-ri using Su-ho.
Su-ho is dropped off at home, and Geu-rim gives him a written copy of the next script. PD Lee tells Geu-rim they need to go, planning to work at the studio all night. Su-ho takes offense to PD Lee calling Geu-rim “Maknae” again, but PD Lee says that she’ll always be “Maknae” to him, especially since the real maknae (the assistant writer) seems to have quit.
He mentions that Su-ho treats Geu-rim like a maknae, the way he ignores her scripts and makes her do errands. He wishes Su-ho goodnight, mentioning that he’ll be with Geu-rim all night. Annoyed, Su-ho calls Geu-rim over and tells her he has a photo shoot in the morning, then invokes the fourth clause in their contract — that she’ll do everything he says.
He says he needs her to drive him tomorrow so that he’s not late for the show, so she has to go home and rest. HA, I love that he’s using their contract to keep her away from PD Lee.
While preparing for their show, Seung-soo wonders out loud why JH Entertainment is sponsoring their show instead of Su-ho’s. Afraid of being caught, Writer Ra snaps at him to concentrate on the show.
Still cranky, she accuses Geu-rim of mocking her when she wishes her luck with her show today. She asks what Geu-rim does on the team when Su-ho’s people write the script, and says nastily that they didn’t get top ratings because of her.
Her words haunt Geu-rim that night, but she finds her note with DJ Moon’s advice that failures can become hits, and it gives her an idea.
She calls Su-ho, who still has her phone, and he says haltingly that he didn’t get to study her script enough to use it for the show tomorrow. She’s just happy that he actually read it, and she tells him that she hopes to one day write a script that he’ll use. She says that they need to talk often so that she knows what he’d want to say.
Su-ho is surprised that she’s not upset that he isn’t using her script. Geu-rim admits that it’s upsetting, but she says that she’s more upset with herself than with him. She changes the subject and asks why he doesn’t carry a phone, and Su-ho says he has nobody to call, and that there’s nobody who would call him.
That’s so sad, but Geu-rim just scoffs and lists PD Lee, his manager, and herself that he could call, and says that she would call him whenever she got stuck writing. He asks her if she going to call him every day if he gets a phone, but instead of sounding annoyed, he actually sounds a bit hopeful.
The photo shoot the next day is a couple shoot with Su-ho and his most recent drama costar, Da-seul. As soon as they get a break, Su-ho goes looking for Geu-rim, and he finds her in the car. Aw, he even brought her lunch, but she says she has to run a quick errand and leaves him standing there alone. HAHA.
Geu-rim goes to a little country school to speak to a teacher who wrote to the show about a boy named Sang-gu. Student numbers have been dwindling and the school is shutting down, and Sang-gu is the only child graduating this year. Geu-rim goes looking for Sang-gu and finds him on the playground alone, but he tells her to get lost.
She thinks he’s throwing a tantrum because he doesn’t want to graduate, but he says it’s none of her business and yells again for her to go away. He reminds her of Su-ho telling her to go away and she wonders if it’s a defense mechanism.
She asks Sang-gu’s teacher, who tells her that he had a friend named Gyo-min who was supposed to graduate with Sang-gu. Gyo-min got sick and went to Seoul for treatment, but the teacher didn’t want to upset the children so she didn’t tell them that he died. Only now, Sang-gu is refusing to graduate without his friend.
Tae-ri crashes Su-ho’s photo shoot and demands to replace Da-seul, and ugh, she’s even wearing the exact same dress. Apparently Su-ho’s mother ordered the switch, and this time Da-seul doesn’t take Tae-ri’s pushiness so easily. They end up in a physical fight, and Su-ho walks right past them without bothering to break them up.
He calls his mother, who says that she’s doing this because he insisted on doing the radio show. She’s meeting with the director of the documentary on their family, and she tells him that Su-ho will easily comply with his schedule regardless of the radio show, and signs the contract.
Su-ho is forced to pose for photos with Tae-ri, but he ignores her between sessions. She calls him out on it, but he just tells her to please ignore him as well. When she says they need to get along, he retorts that he’s a good enough actor to pull it off. Ouch, burn.
On her way to pick up Su-ho, Geu-rim calls Station Manager Kang to reassure him that they’ll be back in time for the show. Meanwhile, PD Lee sets up a little table with the scientist’s skincare products, trying to ignore Seung-soo needling him about not having any guests again.
He tells Seung-soo not to rely on idols and gifts but to focus on the true value of radio. Seung-soo says angrily that they need to draw in younger listeners to ensure the future of radio. PD Lee admits that he’s right, surprising Seung-soo.
When Geu-rim arrives to pick up Su-ho, she tells him to hurry because the forecast is predicting heavy snow and traffic delays. They end up in completely stopped traffic behind an accident, and when Geu-rim calls PD Lee, Station Manager Kang takes the phone to yell at her for not making a backup recording for these situations.
While he’s busy panicking, PD Lee calmly arranges for the show to be broadcast remotely. He tells Geu-rim to quickly re-write the script and get herself and Su-ho to a nearby radio station, and he’ll run things from their station. But she has a different idea, and she makes a quick U-turn and heads back to the elementary school.
When they get there, PD Lee tells Geu-rim that she’s in charge and asks to speak to Su-ho. He asks Su-ho to treat Geu-rim like a main writer today, and Su-ho promises not to make any mistakes.
Seeing Geu-rim shivering in the cold, Su-ho gives her his scarf again. But this time he puts it on her himself and says that he’ll do whatever she tells him in order to make this work. He asks what she needs from him, and Geu-rim earnestly asks for his help with something.
She only has an hour to write a script about the school’s final graduation, so she needs Su-ho to interview Sang-gu, the lone graduate. She says that they’ll probably get along because Sang-gu is a lot like him, and when Su-ho witnesses the boy angrily tear down the graduation banner and push his classmate, he gets what she means.
He follows Sang-gu to another classroom, and the boy is surprised when Su-ho doesn’t stop him from hurling a plant out the window. Su-ho follows him as he stomps all the way home, still carrying the plant. Su-ho snaps at him, and Su-ho quips that he really is like himself, ha.
Sang-gu yells at Su-ho to get lost, and Su-ho asks if he said that to his friend, too, pushing him away because he was upset that he was leaving. Sang-gu thinks of the last time he saw Gyo-min, when he’d cried as he told his friend to go away. He asks how Su-ho knew, and Su-ho just says that he understands. He tells Sang-gu that his friend isn’t ever coming back.
Geu-rim gets the equipment ready, and Su-ho returns, reporting that Sang-gu said he’d come on his own. He asks Geu-rim to show him her script and looks it over, but only minutes before they’re to go on air, the teacher runs in saying that Sang-gu asked her for Gyo-min’s address in Seoul then disappeared.
Su-ho and Geu-rim search the school for Sang-gu, and Su-ho finally finds him outside, sitting alone and flicking a flashlight off and on. It reminds Su-ho of how he lies awake at night, clicking his lamp off and on for company.
Su-ho apologizes to Sang-gu for what he said, but he also says that sometimes, people may really want to come back, but they can’t. He continues, “Someone told me this a long time ago: ‘Just because you’re not crying doesn’t mean you’re not sad. Just because you’re smiling doesn’t mean you’re happy.’”
He tells Sang-gu that if he continues holding in his tears, he’ll become like him. Sang-gu tells Su-ho that Gyo-min promised to return from Seoul in time for graduation. “He told me to wait. He promised! But I told him to go, I told him I wouldn’t wait. That’s what I said. I feel like he’s not returning because I told him to leave.” Aww, sweet boy.
He says that he’s waiting for Gyo-min to tell him if he should keep waiting, or if he should graduate. Su-ho offers to help him ask his friend himself, through the radio, where Gyo-min will be listening.
He and Sang-gu arrive back at the school just in time to make it on the air. Su-ho has Sang-gu tell his story, and how he’s been signaling his friend so that he can apologize for telling him to leave when he actually wanted to beg him to stay.
With Geu-rim prompting him, Su-ho asks Sang-gu if he has anything else he wants to say. Sang-gu pleads for someone to help keep his school from closing, because if he graduates and the school is gone, his friend has nowhere to come back to.
The program ends with the other students singing a goodbye song, and everyone looks touched as they listen. Only Su-ho’s mother appears annoyed, and Writer Ra screams out loud, knowing that she’ll never beat the listener numbers this broadcast will generate.
During the song, Geu-rim tells Su-ho that he doesn’t have to follow her script for the ending. She explains that they worked on this show together, so he should say what he wants.
He goes very still, remembering a young girl who once hugged him and told him that just because he wasn’t crying didn’t mean he wasn’t sad, and that smiling didn’t mean he was happy. He signs off with those words, watching Geu-rim the entire time.
Back at the station, PD Lee and Hoon-jung quietly celebrate a successful broadcast. But Drought, who’s monitoring the message boards, alerts PD Lee to one post that declares, “Ji Su-ho is a murderer!” Hoon-jung hands over a stack of postcards that arrived recently, all of them saying the same thing in different styles and lettering.
The scene switches to Jason, who’s talking to someone we don’t see. He says that he has a patient who will soon be getting into a relationship he’s never experienced. He laughs and says that he’s looking forward to the patient’s reaction, looking slightly unhinged. What was that?
After the show, Geu-rim asks Sang-gu when he and Su-ho got so close. Sang-gu tells her that Su-ho said they were alike, and that he has someone he doesn’t want to leave, and someone he told to leave. He wonders if Su-ho is also waiting for someone who won’t come back.
Su-ho returns and congratulates Sang-gu on his graduation. Sang-gu asks where Su-ho hung his graduation certificate, but Su-ho says he doesn’t have one. We see a crypt, in which lies an urn labeled with the name Woo Ji-woo, next to photos of Su-ho’s friend who was in the accident. Behind the urn is Su-ho’s graduation certificate.
Someone approaches, and although we don’t see their face, it looks like Joon-woo.
Su-ho follows Geu-rim as she runs out into the snow. She surprises him by whirling around and hugging him, and she tells him that today was the first step of her dream to have her words read live on the radio. She asks Su-ho where he heard the words he said in his closing, because it’s her favorite line, and she thinks they have something in common.
Su-ho remembers meeting Geu-rim as kids, when he’d found her at the hospital, wearing a mask over her eyes and trying to walk with a cane. They’d spent a lot of time together, but Su-ho only saw Geu-rim without the mask once, when he caught her napping on a bench one day.
On a different day, he’d told Geu-rim that he once suffered a fever for three days, but neither of his parents noticed. He’d laughed and said it was funny, but Geu-rim had disagreed.
She’d hugged him and told him something that she once heard on the radio — that just because you’re not crying doesn’t mean you aren’t sad, and smiling doesn’t mean you’re happy.
Back in the present, Su-ho asks, “Song Geu-rim, don’t you remember me?” He puts a hand over her eyes, leans in, and kisses her. We see that one day, when Geu-rim was still wearing her mask, young Su-ho had kissed her then, too.
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Close your eyes, I’m about to kiss you
Yes, kiss!! Actually, two wonderfully sweet, meaningful kisses. I wasn’t expecting a kiss this early, but I’m not mad about it, either. Su-ho has been having a harder and harder time hiding his feelings for Geu-rim (the boy practically has hearts for eyes when he looks at her), so I’m not really surprised that he finally gave in, and using it as a reminder of their childhood romance was so beautiful. I’m also happy about this development because this episode really emphasized how smitten Su-ho is with Geu-rim, and how utterly, completely unaffected she is by him. His star power doesn’t impress her because she doesn’t watch television, and he literally has zero game because he’s probably spent his life avoiding any emotional entanglements. So Su-ho was going to have to do or say something that would leave no doubt in her mind of his feelings, and I’m thinking this kiss will quite handily accomplish that.
I also got my wish to see more of their backstory, and now it makes sense why Geu-rim doesn’t remember Su-ho — she never saw his face. I’m guessing that they met while her mother and his friend Ji-woo were both in the hospital, and that Geu-rim was trying to experience her what mother’s world would be like after her eye surgery. It’s no wonder that Geu-rim made such a strong impression on Su-ho, since she was there for him at a time in his life when he was losing someone very important to him. We know that Joon-woo wasn’t there, although it’s possible he was related to Ji-woo (brothers maybe, given their similar names) and that he was suffering as well. And knowing Su-ho’s parents, I doubt they even cared about what was happening.
But Geu-rim showed Su-ho love and kindness at the time when he needed it the most, which probably changed his life. My theory is that he followed her around for a while after that, explaining the scenes we’ve seen where he watched her but she didn’t notice him. He remembered their connection and probably hoped that somehow, Geu-rim would instinctively know who he was. But she didn’t, so Su-ho probably started feeling resentful, and that’s why he’s been so cold towards her in the present. It’s not fair to Geu-rim, but Su-ho isn’t exactly emotionally healthy, so it wouldn’t surprise me to discover that I’m close to the truth.
It was so good to see that when he wants to, Su-ho can be a good teammate to Geu-rim. I think that it was for him to learn that it’s okay to turn over control to someone else and trust them to make sure nothing bad happens. I’m also impressed with the level of self-awareness that Su-ho showed when talking to little Sang-gu. He hasn’t previously been very open to acknowledging his own faults, so to see himself in the angry boy was a lot more insightful than I expected of Su-ho at this point. He knew why Sang-gu told his friend to go away, afraid of showing his fear at the thought of losing him. But the best part was that he sincerely apologized for saying the wrong thing. Su-ho showed a lot of compassion and understanding with the little boy, and I hope that it will open him up to giving himself that same compassion.
But can we talk about Jason for a moment? Did anyone else get a very creepy vibe from his short appearance in this episode? The timing was ominous, coming right after the reveal that someone is accusing Su-ho of being a murderer, and that laugh looked practically demented. I’m scared now that Jason is up to no good, though I can’t for the life of me figure out what would explain it if Jason was out for some sort of revenge. I’m so torn, because I liked Jason as a character and I don’t want to see him go to the dark side, but I can’t deny that I’m intrigued by the idea of seeing Kwak Dong-yeon playing a psycho role. Either way, it will be interesting to see where the show goes with this.
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- Kim So-hyun offered Radio Romance opposite Yoon Doo-joon
- Yoon Doo-joon signs on to KBS’s healing Radio Romance