Let’s Eat 3: Episode 11
Everything is falling apart for our favorite characters — or is it? No, it definitely is. Er, maybe. It’s about as clear as Dae-young realizing how he feels about Ji-woo. Hopes and dreams might be reluctantly shoved aside in order to focus on more practical matters — but no one ever truly gives up on their hopes and dreams, do they?
EPISODE 11 RECAP: “I’m Going To Do What Makes Me Happy”
Seo-yeon sits at the bus stop and turns off her phone when Sun tries to reach her. She takes her suitcase and walks away to have a sad, lonely drink. She eventually turns her phone back on, where she sees twenty-two missed calls from Sun.
Dae-young’s getting ready for bed (by simply tossing the mess on his covers onto the floor, ha!). He gets a call from Sun, asking if Dae-young’s heard from Seo-yeon. Dae-young hasn’t, but tries calling her, where he discovers she’s completely drunk and just happy to have a friend to talk to.
Dae-young goes to Seo-yeon. He sees the suitcase and Seo-yeon doesn’t explain, but lets Dae-young think she can no longer stay at her “friend’s” house. She takes away Dae-young’s phone when he says Sun was worried about her and wants to know where she is.
Still concerned, Dae-young offers to let her stay at his place and he’ll go somewhere else. Seo-yeon doesn’t want to disrupt him, but Dae-young insists he’ll just stay at a sauna. Amused, Seo-yeon points out that he used to love going to the sauna when they were in college.
She adds that they shouldn’t dwell on the past, though, since she always seems to be the one who makes mistakes.
Flashback to 2005, where everyone is at the sauna and Ji-woo — along with a dozen other women — are riveted by the TV that’s playing My Name is Kim Sam-soon. The boys watch as Ji-woo dabs her eyes with a tissue, caught up in the emotion of the scene.
Byung-sam still has a huge crush, insisting that Ji-woo is the prettiest when she cries. Jin-seok can’t believe that Byung-sam finds Ji-woo pretty, but Dae-young jumps to her defense, insisting that Ji-woo has a kind of beauty that grows on you the more you get to know her.
Sung-joo asks if Dae-young also likes Ji-woo now, but Jin-seok retorts that Dae-young is just supporting Byung-sam. However, Dae-young is suddenly thrown for a loop as he begins to wonder if he, indeed, likes Ji-woo. Dae-young’s eyes grow wide as he stares at her, realizing that yes, maybe he does like her after all.
To distract himself, he goes to get some food. Ji-woo and Sung-joo join him, and Ji-woo’s excited to eat some classic sauna dishes: hardboiled eggs, seaweed soup, and spicy chicken.
Dae-young’s still a little dazed and lost in thought after discovering his feeeeeeelings, but tries to cover it up by pointing out that Ji-woo’s no longer speaking in an accent. She laughs and says she’s been working on sounding more like a Seoulite, but reassures him her satoori will return whenever she goes to Busan.
They begin to eat their food, and Dae-young gasps at how spicy the chicken is. He starts to grab his drink, but Ji-woo stops him to tell him to eat an egg and drink some soup instead, so he won’t ruin the flavor profile of trying to soothe something spicy with something sweet.
The trio enjoy their meal, although Dae-young tries to avoid looking at Ji-woo as much as possible. But Dae-young stops cold when his hand touches Ji-woo’s hand as she offers him an egg. He shoves the egg in his mouth and eats even faster, funneling mouthful after mouthful of chicken into his face and barely even chewing, much to Ji-woo and Sung-joo’s befuddlement.
Jin-seok and Byung-sam are trying (and failing, of course) to get dates by having drinks delivered to unsuspecting girls. Byung-sam refuses to keep on playing this game since the only girl he’s interested in is Ji-woo (and because Jin-seok keeps making Byung-sam pay for everything). A pretty girl comes up to them and says she can help them get girlfriends.
Haha, she’s darkened their eyebrows to give them a trendy “celebrity-style.” But instead of looking like the handsome Song Seung-heon, they look more like the cartoon character Crayon Shin-chan.
Seo-yeon dances at a club but takes a break to grab a beer. A random guy buys one for her, which she accepts.
Another guy comes up and says that she’s always desperate for attention, surrounding herself with guys even back when she dated him. Seo-yeon retorts that they never really dated, she just spent time with him because he begged her to.
The guy says that she’s just like her mother, who cheated on her father with a younger man and that’s the reason her parents divorced. Seo-yeon slugs the guy in the face for that remark, but the guy slaps her in return. Seo-yeon retaliates by grabbing the guy’s hair.
Eventually Seo-yeon finds herself alone at a bus stop, a little bloody and bruised. She remembers when she was a little girl and her mother was drunk. Other Mom told child Seo-yeon that it’s all Seo-yeon’s fault that Other Mom never got to be the famous actress and model she once aspired to be.
If Other Mom hadn’t gotten pregnant, she wouldn’t have had to marry Seo-yeon’s father and give up her career. Other Mom drunkenly yells that Seo-yeon was a mistake and she should have never been born.
Child Seo-yeon tries to hide her tears caused by Other Mom’s hurtful words. Twenty-year-old Seo-yeon calls her stepmother, wishing she could see Busan Mom right now.
Dae-young tosses and turns in bed, unable to sleep because he can’t stop thinking about Ji-woo. He hops out of bed to do pushups to keep his mind off things.
Next door, Ji-woo and Seo-yeon are asleep when the doorbell rings at 5:30 in the morning. It’s Mom! Seo-yeon said she needed to see her, so she came! Mom’s worried about the scratches on Seo-yeon’s face from the club fight, but Seo-yeon says it’ll heal faster with Mom’s kimchi sujebi.
That’s a request Mom anticipated, so she brought all the ingredients needed. Ji-woo grumbles as she kneads the dough and cleans up, feeling a little left out of Mom and Seo-yeon’s coziness. But Ji-woo’s attitude suddenly becomes sunnier when Mom tells her to invite Dae-young for breakfast.
Ji-woo runs into Dae-young in the hallway as he’s leaving his apartment and cheerily asks him to partake in their homemade breakfast. He curtly tells her that he has to go to school. Surprised that Dae-young would turn down a meal, Ji-woo sadly returns to her apartment.
Mom promises to spend the day with Seo-yeon but has to return to Busan that night. Ji-woo looks even sadder to be left out of the day’s plans.
Ji-woo finds Dae-young in the computer lab at school, picking classes to register for next semester. When she sees he’s choosing a photography class, Ji-woo eagerly says she’ll take the same one.
But Dae-young suddenly changes his mind and tells her he won’t be taking it. He scurries out of the room, leaving an increasingly bewildered Ji-woo behind.
Seo-yeon and Ji-woo spend time at the mall, and they stop at a photo booth to get their pictures taken. After the photo stickers are printed out, Seo-yeon puts on one her phone and another on Mom’s phone, so Mom can always have a photo of them with her.
Seo-yeon notices that Mom’s hands look rough, so she treats her to a manicure. Mom admits that she’s never had a manicure before — it feels like a waste of money when it will just get ruined since she spends all day cooking. The manicurist admires the bond between Seo-yeon and Mom, and even remarks they look alike.
Seo-yeon jumps on this, happily asking the manicurist what way they resemble each other. The manicurist says their eyes are the same when they smile, which pleases Seo-yeon, even if she knows that they aren’t actually blood related. Mom continues to be delighted to have a daughter like Seo-yeon, who beams at all the attention Mom gives her.
Sung-joo, Jin-seok, and Byung-sam officially request their leave of absence due to their impending enlistment. Dae-young’s still planning to postpone for another year so he can go to Germany. His friends warn him that his time will come sooner than he’ll realize, and he’d better watch his back since by then they’ll all be higher ranking than him.
Ji-woo walks up to see what’s going on. The boys invite her to join them for a drink (that Dae-young will be paying for), which she happily accepts. But Dae-young suddenly stutters that he picked up an early shift at work — and he runs away. Literally.
The other three boys and Ji-woo stare at Dae-young’s rapidly retreating back, and Sung-joo finds it strange that Dae-young just lied to them since he knows Dae-young isn’t working until later. He assumes Dae-young just wanted to get out of paying for drinks. Ji-woo, of course, continues to look sad.
Later that night, Seo-yeon and Ji-woo see Mom off at the train station. As Seo-yeon runs to buy Mom some water for her trip, Ji-woo pouts that it’s hard for her to see Mom so devoted and nice to Seo-yeon. Mom gently tells Ji-woo that Seo-yeon’s had a rough childhood, and Mom is just trying to make things a little bit better for her.
Ji-woo returns home, and sees the light on in Dae-young’s apartment. She rings Dae-young’s doorbell, but only the other three boys are there. They tell her that Dae-young went to the sauna and they’re meeting him there later.
At the sauna, Dae-young tries to do Ji-woo’s trick to easily peel the hardboiled egg, but it doesn’t work for him. Then he tries to shake himself out of thinking about Ji-woo. He’s surprised to see her, then, tagging along with the other boys.
He quickly excuses himself and once again hurries away, which everyone finds a bit weird, but the boys are just happy to pounce on Dae-young’s uneaten leftovers. Ji-woo wanders all around the sauna, looking for Dae-young, but she can’t find him anywhere. So she gives up and decides to sleep.
Later, Dae-young finds her alseep — and Byung-sam asleep right next to her. Dae-young drags Byung-sam’s mat to the other side of the room and takes up a position next to Byung-sam, feeling confident he’s far enough away from Ji-woo.
Which means Dae-young’s surprised when he wakes up and discovers that Ji-woo is mere inches away. He studies her sleeping face, but as soon as her eyes flutter open, Dae-young springs to his feet and runs away.
Dae-young’s still reeling over the newfound discovery that he likes Ji-woo, thinking over all the past clues, when she suddenly runs up in front of him. She’s worried that she’s done something to make him angry, which is why he keeps avoiding her. She starts to cry, asking what she’s done to make him act this way.
He stares at her for a long moment, then seems to catch himself and shoves his hat on her head so she can cover her tearful eyes. He tells her not to cry — he’s not angry. Dae-young hesitates: “It’s just that I…”
His phone buzzes. It’s his mother, so he answers it. Dae-young’s eyes grow wide in shock.
Later, the other three boys help pack up Dae-young’s belongings from his apartment. It turns out that Dae-young’s father’s company has gone bankrupt and all the family’s assets are being seized. Since he can no longer afford tuition, Dae-young is dropping out of school and enlisting soon — sooner than even the other three boys.
In 2018, Ji-woo makes breakfast for Dae-young only to discover Seo-yeon at his place. Seo-yeon takes the food after telling Ji-woo that Dae-young already left for work, but Ji-woo barges in, shoving her sister. Seo-yeon shoves her back.
Seo-yeon yells that Ji-woo isn’t Dae-young’s wife or girlfriend, so it’s not like she has the right to act angry or jealous. Ji-woo furiously retorts that it’s obvious that Seo-yeon is just using Dae-young to hurt Ji-woo. If Seo-yeon was really Dae-young’s friend, she wouldn’t have blabbed about his girlfriend being dead.
Sun gets word from his boss that his delivery project is being scrapped so the company can focus on other pursuits.
Dae-young arrives at work to be told that he doesn’t need to show up at the office any more. Ha, except he’s not fired — he just literally doesn’t need to show up at this office since he’s being promoted to branch manager in another district. His old manager tells him that the bosses don’t know about his second job, so he should wrap that up before he signs his promotion documents.
Dae-young returns home to discover Seo-yeon already gone. But she left a note, telling him that Ji-woo brought him breakfast (which Seo-yeon ate). Seo-yeon thanks him for letting her stay at his place, but she promises she won’t use him again, and she’ll be staying with another friend.
Dae-young returns the empty bowl to Ji-woo, telling her that Seo-yeon said the porridge was delicious. He begins to explain why Seo-yeon was at his place, but Ji-woo curtly interrupts, insisting she knows all about it.
He’s surprised that Seo-yeon told Ji-woo that her business went under, and that she didn’t have any where else to go. But Ji-woo is surprised to discover that’s what really happened.
Dae-young also tells her about his promotion, and Ji-woo happily offers to buy him a meal as a congratulations. Dae-young says that he’s the one who’s now promoted, so it’s his treat.
They go to a restaurant where they grill their own lamb shanks. Ji-woo asks if Dae-young knows that lamb is good for rejuvenation, and Dae-young points out that’s like asking if Messi knows how to play soccer. Of course the foodie knows everything!
They enjoy their lamb shanks and lamb skewers. Ji-woo actually schools Dae-young on the best way to grill the skewers (on the super awesome grill that automatically rotates the skewers for them).
When they return home, Dae-young receives a package. He’s surprised because he didn’t order anything, but it turns out to be a carefully packed box with all the ingredients needed for chilled chicken soup. It’s from the countryside restaurant owner. Aw, it looks like Dae-young’s efforts have paid off and the restaurant owner is willing to join the delivery service.
Dae-young’s adorably thrilled, likening it to winning the lottery. But he sighs that he won’t be able to work on Sun’s project once he accepts his insurance manager promotion. Oh, Dae-young, if you only knew…
It turns out that the friend Seo-yeon has decided to stay with is the Other Mom, who also easily hands over the 200,000,000 won Seo-yeon asks for.
When Other Mom starts whine about the amount, Seo-yeon says Other Mom can just consider an early-withdrawal from Seo-yeon’s inheritance. Oooh, Other Mom looks like she’s going to be as awful as ever as she gulps down antidepressants while snarking at Seo-yeon.
Sun returns home and Seo-yeon pops out of her “office,” asking Sun what his assignment is for her. Except she’s just in Sun’s imagination, and he flops down on his bed, staring at his phone. Imaginary Seo-yeon tells him he should answer the phone, since she’s the one who’s calling.
Sun grabs the phone, and yep, it’s (the real) Seo-yeon. He immediately demands to know why she’s been ignoring his calls, but she just tells him that she wants to meet with him face-to-face tomorrow.
That night, Seo-yeon is awakened by the sound of the TV. Other Mom is drunk in the living room and Seo-yeon snatches the glass from her, warning her that she shouldn’t mix antidepressants and alcohol. But Other Mom gripes that it’s the only way she can get to sleep.
Other Mom echoes the same complaints that she told young Seo-yeon so many years ago — how Seo-yeon ruined her life and that she should have aborted Seo-yeon, just like everyone told her to. Seo-yeon angrily asks if the only reason Other Mom asked Seo-yeon to live with her is so she could have an excuse to complain.
But Other Mom stands up and repeats that Seo-yeon was a mistake, and, knocking off a bottle from the table, staggers her way back to her room. Just like she used to do as a child, Seo-yeon tries to stifle her emotions.
In the morning, Dae-young is shocked to find out that the delivery creative team is no more. He’s willing to keep fighting for it, since he believes in Sun’s idea, but Sun tells Dae-young that this is just how things work around here and there’s nothing to be done.
Sun can’t stick around to argue, anyway, since he has to hurry to meet Seo-yeon. Aw, he’s got the biggest smile on his face when he finally sees her. He worriedly asks where she’s been, reassuring her that his cousin has left and will no longer be a problem.
Seo-yeon slides over the money she got from her mother, telling him that she’s paying off what she owes him. Concerned, Sun asks if she went to a loan shark, but Seo-yeon cuts him off, telling him that it’s none of his business.
She asks him why he paid her debt: “Do you like me?” Sun stutters out that he got tired of his cousin bugging him every day and calling Seo-yeon terrible names, then finally admits that he does, indeed, like Seo-yeon.
Seo-yeon cooly tells him that he shouldn’t, since they’re not a good match. Sun admits that he knows Seo-yeon doesn’t really think much of him, but he’s willing to work hard to convince her otherwise. Sighing, Seo-yeon says he’s not getting the hint.
We don’t hear what she says to make Sun look like he’s been punched in the gut, but she walks out of the cafe and returns to her mother’s house — where she’s startled by a near-naked young man sauntering into her mother’s bedroom. Seo-yeon can’t forget the way that guy from the club said that her mom cheated on her father with a younger man.
Once again gathering up her belongings into her suitcase, Seo-yeon leaves her mother’s house — and arrives on Ji-woo’s doorstep.
Ji-woo’s just getting ready for bed when she answers the door, and Seo-yeon waltzes in, declaring that she’s going to stay here now. Ji-woo doesn’t look pleased, and Seo-yeon says she can ask to stay at Dae-young’s instead, but that just reminds Ji-woo of what Dae-young said about Seo-yeon’s business falling through.
Ji-woo doesn’t look thrilled, but lets Seo-yeon stay. Ha, but she kicks Seo-yeon out of the bed to instead sleep on the floor. Ah, just like old times.
Dae-young’s still concerned about the delivery project being cancelled. When he goes to CQ Foods to talk to Sun again, one of the other employees tells him that Sun isn’t around and they’re already clearing everything out. Dae-young asks to at least keep the files he worked on.
He messages Sun that he’s keeping the files, but Sun doesn’t answer because he’s at the edge of a lake, lost in thought. Sun can’t stop thinking about Seo-yeon and her insistence that they don’t fit each other.
Sun had asked if it was the age difference, but Seo-yeon suddenly blurted out that she’s divorced. Whoa. She added that she’s not the kind of girl Sun should date, and then walked out of the cafe.
Seo-yeon’s on her hands-and-knees, cleaning Ji-woo’s apartment. Ha, it seems like that’s part of her agreement to stay there, and she grumbles that it’s payback for all the times she didn’t do any housework when they were in college.
She spots a mess under the sofa, and leans down to clean it up. Her eyes light-up when she sees a 1,000 won bill. Finders, keepers! She also pulls out a scrap of paper from under the sofa.
Dae-young visits the countryside restaurant, apologizing in person since he knows it wasn’t an easy decision for the owner. He then returns to the insurance company where he’s handed the official paperwork to finalize his promotion and raise.
Ji-woo returns home to see that Seo-yeon apparently left midway through cleaning. But that’s because the scrap of paper she found was a photo of Ji-woo and Mom in front of the nursing home.
Seo-yeon goes to the nursing home, where she sees Mom walking down the hallway. Mom walks past her without a second glance, and Seo-yeon grabs her arm: “Mom!” But Mom just apologizes for bumping into her and keeps walking without recognizing Seo-yeon. Seo-yeon looks heart-broken.
Ji-woo’s headed out for a walk with Kongali and runs into Dae-young, who’s just returning home. She assumes the big grin on Dae-young’s face is due to the promotion being finalized, but instead Dae-young says he quit.
When he visited the restaurant owner, Dae-young had asked the owner to consider working with Dae-young, since CQ Foods was no longer an option. Dae-young never signed the promotion paperwork, and instead resigned from his insurance job. Dae-young tells Ji-woo he’s finally going to work on something that makes him happy.
Aw, I’m excited for Dae-young’s new adventure, although I can’t stop thinking about intellectual property rights and that there had to have been some sort of clause in Dae-young’s contract that any files he created for CQ Foods are still the company’s and not his with which to do whatever he wants. But I’m willing to suspend my disbelief since it makes Dae-young so happy. This also means that my dream for our four leads to put their heads together and create a delivery service of their own is one step closer to becoming a reality. After all, Seo-yeon is definitely in need of a job, since even if Ji-woo is family, we know she’s not the type to just let Seo-yeon stay at her place rent-free (well, at least not without a lot of grumbling).
I gotta admit I may have made an actual “squee” sound when Seo-yeon barged through Ji-woo’s door. I’m so excited to have the sisters reunited and living together again, just like they did in college. Maybe it’s not under the most ideal conditions, but this is the reunion I’ve waited the longest for. They’re obviously not opening up to each other yet (thank goodness for Dae-young’s innocent blabbermouth for helping them to get this far), and they still have a lot to work through (whatever split them apart years ago and Mom’s current dementia are two topics that definitely need to be discussed), but they’re finally in the same space again. Baby steps, baby steps.
I’m also just as dumbfounded as Sun by Seo-yeon’s divorce bomb. At first I thought she had to be lying because I wouldn’t put it past her to do whatever it took to prove that she’s the wrong kind of woman for Sun. But I can completely believe that Seo-yeon got married (perhaps young, perhaps in a reactionary way) and that the relationship didn’t work out. That dude from the club was a total jerk, but he wasn’t wrong in pointing out that Seo-yeon does seem to thrive with a male entourage. I can easily understand Seo-yeon seeking male attention to help deal with the pain of her mother heaping on a lifetime’s worth of pain, where Seo-yeon was continually told she wasn’t loved or wanted.
Which also explains why Seo-yeon is so greedy for Ji-woo’s mother’s love and attention — it’s the mother she always wanted but never had when she was growing up. Ji-woo probably had a pretty decent childhood. Ji-woo didn’t come from the richest family, and her father died when she was a child, but it was always obvious that her mother loved her and would do anything for her.
Maybe Mom could have balanced her affection for both her daughters a little better, but Seo-yeon is like a black hole of need and hunger when it comes to love, so it’s understandable that Mom would be willing to do all she could to try and fill that hole at least a little bit. That’s something twenty-year-old Ji-woo didn’t understand, and I’m not sure that thirty-something Ji-woo does, either. At least Seo-yeon seems to be aware of her shortcomings. She may not be perfect, but Seo-yeon seems to try to do the best she can to deal with the psychological and emotional scars from her childhood. Maybe she doesn’t deal with her scars in ideal ways, but at least she can recognize when a line has been crossed — or is about to be crossed. Even if it means living with her estranged sister.