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Boyfriend: Episode 10

As committed to this relationship as our lovers are, lately it seems as though it’s been all hardship and very little fun. They’re still dealing with being apart, and for now there’s not much they can do but make the best of the situation. But a crisis sends them back to their roots, rekindling the romance and leading to some very important revelations.

 
EPISODE 10 RECAP

After reuniting, Soo-hyun asks Jin-hyuk what he was thinking about out here under the lighthouse. He says he was thinking about her, and he shows her the passage he was reading that says, “If the sea’s job is to make waves, then mine is to think of you,” which is about a mother thinking of her daughter.

They go back to the hotel for lunch, where loyal employees turn guests away from the restaurant while they eat. Soo-hyun tells Jin-hyuk that Mrs. Lee told her to spend time with Jin-hyuk and be happy while she can. They talk about how they visit places that remind them of the other, like Jin-hyuk haunting the beach and Soo-hyun spending time at Jin-hyuk’s playground.

He says sadly that the playground will be gone soon, because the owner of the land died and her children put it up for sale. Soo-hyun suggests they go there to take pictures before it closes.

She asks if it upset Jin-hyuk that she asked for time apart, and he says that what upset him was that she thought he couldn’t handle the difficulties they were facing. He tells her that he doesn’t know the solution, but that he’s determined to solve it. Soo-hyun admits that she screwed up and asks for his forgiveness, and he caves.

Soo-hyun’s mother goes to see Chairwoman Kim, who right away lets her know that her visit is unwelcome due to Soo-hyun’s recent behavior. Soo-hyun’s mother tells her that she went to Sokcho to scold Jin-hyuk, but Chairwoman Kim chuckles that it does no good to scold someone else’s child when it’s her own child that’s the problem.

Soo-hyun’s mother reluctantly admits it and asks for Chairwoman Kim’s understanding, but Chairwoman Kim is all out of patience. She says she’s no longer interested in rejoining their families, and that she won’t see Soo-hyun’s mother in the future.

Soo-hyun’s mother get on her knees to beg, but Chairwoman Kim sneers that her behavior is unseemly for someone who may soon be First Lady — not that it’s likely to happen without Taekyung Group’s help. Soo-hyun’s mother keeps begging, so Chairwoman Kim just leaves her there.

Jin-hyuk calls Driver Nam to drive Soo-hyun back to the city, worried that she’ll be too tired to make the trip twice in one day. He sends her off with a smile, but after she’s gone, Jin-hyuk looks a little sad.

Jin-myung is busy playing Cupid — he takes the day off from Dae-chan’s restaurant, then calls Secretary Jang saying that Dae-chan wants to see her, when actually Dae-chan told Jin-myung to find him a part-timer to take his shift. Secretary Jang laughs wryly like this is the dumbest thing ever, but she rolls up her sleeves and gets to work. Dae-chan just sits back and watches her, greatly amused.

As they drive, Driver Nam tells Soo-hyun that he used to like a woman, but that he never confessed to her because she was beautiful, and he was shy due to his big face and having been to jail. Soo-hyun defends that all he did was write an article that upset someone, but he says that he’s still a convict who wouldn’t even have a job if not for her.

Soo-hyun points out that if not for him, she wouldn’t have any friends, because he’s the one who would help her sneak out to hang out with Secretary Jang. Finishing his story, Driver Nam says that he waited so long to confess to the woman he liked that she married someone else. Awww, he’s talking about Director Kim, isn’t he?

He advises Soo-hyun not to worry about others and just to focus on the man she loves, and when she says she worries about Jin-hyuk, Driver Nam reminds her that this is what Jin-hyuk chooses. She worries that her family will suffer, but again Driver Nam tells her that what’s important is what she and Jin-hyuk want.

Soo-hyun thanks him for telling her his story, and he warns her not to tell anyone. She promises not to tell Director Kim, and Driver Nam utterly fails at playing innocent. LOL, I knew it.

Secretary Jang is worn out at the end of the night, and she accepts Dae-chan’s offer of a beer, though she says she’s trying to stop drinking after what happened on New Year’s. Dae-chan gives her the advice to just not date guys who criticize her for making drunken mistakes, and he pays her for her hard work tonight.

He says he threw in a bit extra because he was proud of how hard she worked, which surprises her — no man’s ever said they were proud of her. Feeling sheepish, she apologizes for being so harsh to Dae-chan on their date.

Dae-chan says that even if she doesn’t want to date a guy who doesn’t have a college diploma, she can still come by for a drink when she feels lonely. Secretary Jang quips that he’s just trying to increase sales, but he says he won’t take her money.

She warns him not to hit on her because he’s not her type, but she doesn’t sound very serious. She leaves the restaurant grumbling, but also grinning ear-to-ear. Inside, Dae-chan pounds his chest and tells his heart to stop racing. Oh, you two.

Soo-hyun turns down a video call from Jin-hyuk, so he calls her the regular way and pretends to be upset. Soo-hyun admits that she feels awkward, so Jin-hyuk hangs up on her and calls again. She throws a sweatshirt over her pajamas before answering, which is so cute.

She says she still feels weird, and Jin-hyuk grins that this is one of the joys of a long-distance relationship. He wants to video call every night before bed, but Soo-hyun says she’ll have to get used to it before she commits. Jin-hyuk pouts that he doesn’t feel at all awkward and that the video call makes him like her even more.

Soo-hyun gets upset, but Jin-hyuk just giggles like she’s the cutest thing ever. They experiment with different angles, and when Soo-hyun tells Jin-hyuk that he looks handsome from every angle, he practically swoons. He says she’s never called him handsome before, but she says she thinks it constantly.

Obediently, Soo-hyun says, “You’re handsome. Really handsome. You’re the most handsome guy on Earth. You’re so handsome I can’t breathe! Jin-hyuk is the most handsome guy in the world!” He loves hearing it, but mostly he loves hearing her call him by name.

Soo-hyun says she’s not tired, but that just makes Jin-hyuk worry that she’s still taking sleeping pills so he offers to sing her to sleep. She says she’s not ready for bed and was totally working when he called, and Jin-hyuk is all, Oh, is that why your shirt is on backwards over your jammies? Soo-hyun pouts that she hates video calls, PFFT.

Jin-hyuk thanks Soo-hyun for coming all the way to Sokcho for him, but she says she only did what he always does. Jin-hyuk begs her to let him video call her every day, giving her goosebumps, and they settle in to talk some more. Soon Soo-hyun falls asleep, and Jin-hyuk whispers a sweet good night before hanging up.

The Sokcho hotel is featured in a tourism magazine, with Jin-hyuk’s good deed in finding the girl’s teddy bear as an example of their exceptional customer service. Hye-in takes a picture and texts it to Jin-hyuk then calls him, and he acts like it’s no big deal, then asks her to send the pic to his parents, hee.

His supervisor is thrilled, calling Jin-hyuk their good luck charm, and he says he gets why Soo-hyun likes him so much. He means well, but the comment makes Jin-hyuk uncomfortable.

Director Kim runs to Soo-hyun’s office to show her the article, but she’s disappointed by Soo-hyun’s lukewarm reaction. She asks that Jin-hyuk be reinstated to her PR team, arguing that between this and the year-end party, she needs him.

Instead, Soo-hyun says to give him vacation time, a bonus, and some hotel vouchers. Director Kim asks why she’s not taking the opportunity to bring him back, but Soo-hyun says sadly that he wouldn’t accept it because his good deed would lose its meaning.

Woo-seok decides to send Soo-hyun flowers and a note to try to win her over, and awww, Secretary Kim asks what to do if the flowers are sent back, adding that he doesn’t want to see Woo-seok hurt. Woo-seok says brightly that he’ll keep trying as long as it takes, and he asks Secretary Kim’s advice on what to write on the card.

Whoa, Woo-seok doesn’t just send over a bouquet — he practically fills Soo-hyun’s office with flowers, including a floral path leading to her desk. Secretary Jang finds it romantic, but Soo-hyun is annoyed that Secretary Jang didn’t send the flowers back, and she tells Secretary Jang to take them to her place if she likes them so much (Secretary Jang: “Where do I sleep, then?”).

Woo-seok calls Soo-hyun to say that he’s in the sky lounge, but she says she’s too busy to see him and tells him not to pull a stunt like the flowers again. He waits for hours, while Soo-hyun spends the rest of the day pretending he doesn’t exist.

Director Choi and Manager Lee have kept their heads down lately, but they’re back to their scheming ways as they pressure a middle manager to do something that would harm Soo-hyun. The manager worries that he could get in legal trouble, but Director Choi reassures the man that Soo-hyun won’t be able to file a suit against him because she’ll be fired.

None of them notice that there’s a man sitting nearby, video recording their entire conversation.

Soo-hyun learns that the middle manager sent an email to the owner of the Cuba property, saying that they have no intention of maintaining the garden regardless of Soo-hyun’s promise, even insulting the Cuban people and threatening to cancel the hotel plans. He admitted to sending the email, then resigned and has completely disappeared.

Her people have tried to smooth things over, but the owner is very upset and offended, and is now refusing to sell. He’s no longer accepting their calls, and once the news got out, other hotel chains are now clambering to buy the property.

Before Soo-hyun can even process this, Secretary Jang alerts her that another emergency board meeting is taking place. When she arrives, Director Choi is arguing that she’s unqualified to be the CEO, and he even mentions that Taekyung is about to sue for ownership of the Donghwa properties. Soo-hyun says that there’s been no actual lawsuit filed, accusing Director Choi of jumping the gun.

She addresses the board, saying that this email was a malicious act and that her team is doing what they can to fix the misunderstanding. She turns to leave without even sitting down, but Director Choi mutters nastily that this happened because she’s too busy with her personal life.

Soo-hyun whips around, but instead of responding to his personal comment, she says that there’s obviously someone behind the malicious email besides the manager, and that she’s going to find out who it is and reveal them.

Hye-in calls Jin-hyuk to tell him what’s happened, and her mention of the garden that belonged to the owner’s wife reminds him of the man he met who talked about his wife’s garden. He uses his reward vacation days and buys a ticket to Cuba.

As it turns out, the man who recorded Director Choi’s secret meeting works for Secretary Kim. Secretary Kim takes the video to Woo-seok, who easily traces the incident at Donghwa back to his mother.

Jin-hyuk sneaks home to pack some warm-weather clothes, and Dad hears him and comes into his room. Jin-hyuk says he’s going on a business trip and promises to stay for breakfast. Dad tells him that he saw his article and that he looked good (Jin-hyuk: “That’s because I’m so handsome.” Dad: “You take after me.” Snerk.)

At the same time, Soo-hyun decides to go to Cuba to try and talk to the landowner personally. While she’s preparing, she gets a text from Jin-hyuk: “‘If the sea’s job is to make waves, then mine is to think of you.’ That’s why I plan on doing my job. Cheer up.”

Jin-hyuk arrives in Cuba and goes to the company that was facilitating the land sale, only to be told that the owner has made up his mind not to sell to Donghwa. They won’t give Jin-hyuk the owner’s contact information, so Jin-hyuk asks them to pass on a letter, but he’s not meeting with them anymore, either.

So Jin-hyuk goes directly to the property, looking determined as he lets himself in the gate. He sits on the steps to the garden with a book, prepared to stay there until the owner shows up. He turns on the lights when it gets dark, and settles in to spend the night.

He lies there looking up at the stars, which reminds him of the poem about the stars and wishing to see one’s loved one again. Jin-hyuk remembers the first time he met Soo-hyun, not far from here, when she fell asleep on his shoulder then spent all his money on beer and dancing.

He wakes in the morning to find the landowner, Samuel, standing over him asking if they’ve met before. He gives Samuel his letter, which explains that he knows how precious the man’s garden is because he feels the same way about his hometown’s playground, which is also threatened. He asks Samuel’s forgiveness of a horrible misunderstanding, assuring him that Donghwa and its CEO want very much to protect the garden.

When he finishes reading Jin-hyuk’s letter, Samuel says he has a question, and that Jin-hyuk’s answer might change his mind. He asks if Jin-hyuk loves the CEO in his letter, and Jin-hyuk says that the hotel should be built here because Donghwa loves the garden. Samuel asks if he’s saying he doesn’t love her, and Jin-hyuk says that he misses Soo-hyun more than anything.

Samuel tells Jin-hyuk not to stay here anymore. He shows him the article in the tourist magazine, having recognized Jin-hyuk’s picture. He says that he doesn’t travel anymore after his wife died, but he loves reading the magazine. He says he’ll give Jin-hyuk an answer in the morning and returns his letter.

By the time Soo-hyun gets to Cuba, she’s learned that Jin-hyuk is here, too. He’s not answering his phone, and she forgets all about the hotel as she goes looking for him. She even stops by the cafe where they were supposed to meet on their last morning there — Jin-hyuk isn’t there, but the note he left for her on the bulletin board is still there.

It says, “I wanted to ask you this if we met again. Do you have a boyfriend?” While she’s reading it, Jin-hyuk walks in and sees her, and he calls out, “Do you have some money?” Soo-hyun turns, and with tears welling in her eyes, she asks how much money he has in mind.

They go to El Malecon Beach where they first met, but it’s closed. Jin-hyuk jumps the gate and beckons Soo-hyun over, and after a momentary hesitation, she casually slips between the bars and leads the way, ha. They manage to avoid the security guard as they sneak up to the spot where they met, and they sit on the wall to have a beer.

Jin-hyuk tells Soo-hyun that he met with Samuel, who said he’d give him an answer tomorrow. Soo-hyun seems sure that it will all work out, and they’re both glad that they could come back here where it feels so magical.

Soo-hyun gets a call from work, letting her know that Samuel has changed his mind and will sell to them. She asks Jin-hyuk how he did it, but he just jumps up and howls a loud “Thank you, Samuel!” into the night. Soo-hyun shushes him, and as she looks around to see if the guard is coming, Jin-hyuk walks over and gives her a huge backhug.

He calls Soo-hyun by name for the first time, and she smiles and says she likes it. Jin-hyuk turns her around in his arms, taking her hands, and he tells her, “I love you.” He kisses her, and kisses her, and kisses her, and the kissing continues later when they get back to her hotel room.

Epilogue.

Earlier, the owner of the cafe had moved Jin-hyuk’s note to the front of the bulletin board, interested in the unusual lettering.

Later, when Jin-hyuk yells out his thanks, the security guard comes by and sees him and Soo-hyun kissing. Smiling, he walks away, leaving them alone.

 
COMMENTS

Oh, that was beautiful. Usually I get all excited and squeeful when the couple finally says they love each other, but this time I just felt calmed, because we’ve known for ages that Jin-hyuk loves Soo-hyun and hearing it was just a confirmation of what these two already know. I’m not even frustrated that Soo-hyun didn’t say it back, because Jin-hyuk already knows how she feels (like he always does), and because she’s usually the one who takes a bit longer to get to where he is. I think that their long, slow kisses — and the fact that they ended up back at her hotel — said more than any small words could, anyway.

I just love Driver Nam and how wise he is — he’s the kind of wise that’s never experienced things for himself, but he’s smart and he watches people, so he understands them in a special way. I love that he tells Soo-hyun to live her life how she wants, and she’s taking it to heart, which is great. But it was eye-opening when Driver Nam also told her that Jin-hyuk is living the life he wants, and that it may be difficult and she may worry for him, but he’s choosing this. So many times I’ve railed at drama characters who make relationship decisions unilaterally, thinking they know what’s best for the other person but without allowing the other person even the chance to weigh in on what they want. Now here comes Driver Nam, casually saying what I’ve always wanted someone to say to those characters: Let them decide for themselves. Let them choose to face the difficult situation if that’s what they want. Worry about yourself, and give them a chance to love you despite the hardships.

I haven’t really mentioned Dae-chan and Secretary Jang as a couple, but now that it looks like things are definitely going that way, I have to say how cute I think they are. Their relationship mirrors Soo-hyun and Jin-hyuk’s in a more basic way, in the sense that Secretary Jang is from a fancier background than Dae-chan. But unlike Soo-hyun and Jin-hyuk, these two are being dragged kicking and screaming into the changes that this relationship will demand of them. Secretary Jang is so high-handed and spoiled, and she could stand to be shown that people with lower standards for happiness aren’t less than she is. And while Dae-chan admirably runs his own business, he and his restaurant are pretty scruffy, and he doesn’t seem to see a reason to do any better. They could get along fine the way they are, there’s nothing wrong with them, but my hope is that they rub off on each other in positive ways like Soo-hyun and Jin-hyuk do. Soo-hyun would be a lot more pleasant if she were less judgmental, and Dae-chan could be really successful if he cleaned himself and his restaurant up a bit and actually pursued his idea of making it a chain.

I’m so happy that Soo-hyun and Jin-hyuk got to take a break from everything and go back to Cuba where they first met, and where everything seemed so easy and shiny and possible. They needed the reminder that this whole thing began because there’s something special between them, and it’s so fitting that they confessed their feelings in the place where it all started. Honestly, I’m starting to think that the best outcome would be for them to build the Cuba hotel, then move there together to run it, leaving all the clingy puppy-eyed exes and toxic mothers and evil schemers behind and just spending every evening making out on the beach. That’s a thing that can happen, isn’t it?

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I'm not going to lie, I had two thoughts while watching this episode.
1. This was becoming a show where the main couple spend more time talking about their relationship than actually having one and
2. The writers were going to ridiculous lengths to avoid skinship
And then that ending blew all my snide internal monologue out of the water. And the epilogue was just perfect.

I don't think I've finished an episode of television before where I was so emotionally replete I didn't want to watch anything else for hours. This was a fantastic episode.

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Well, one of the things I actually like very much about this drama is that the couple talk, they really talk about themselves and what they feel for each other. I love it!!!!
I find it not only very realistic but mature. Even the "teasing" (tell me I am handsome, I tell you you're beautiful) although it sounds teenager(ish), it is part of the process with a new love since it contributes to their self steem (not that these gorgeous characters need any physically speaking) but I have seen couples doing this, giving each other these kind of compliments and reassuring each other that they like each other or how they like each other, and how pretty they look -in their eyes-, and because they do it like "teasing" or joking, it looks like a game, but I know that it is a very emotional behaviour, which is normal in that state of the relationship.
Also, for me the timing in their "having a relationship" is good enough, they have done things like going out to eat, going out to walk, going to the movie, chating, video calling... these are things that belong to their "dating process"... to have a relationship means way more than skinship or even intimacy... It means taking the time to get to know each other, and their pace is actually pretty good. If they really spend the night together in Cuba, as implicit in the end of the episode, although I cannot approve (for they are not married yet), still I would understand... They are emotionally on the same page.

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And you’re first on the recap! That’s how you know how obsessed someone is with a show. 😉 But what a show this was. I dare say that it will be hard to find someone who didn’t like it.

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internet's answer: "challenge accepted" :P

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Best episode so far? I am not even sure, I like it so much!!! That kiss at the end! That song! (Spanish is my mother language)... oh my... I couldn't sleep after watching. I think I dreamt of Cuba after watching. Anyway, I can't articulate well enough why this episode made my whole week, but I am sure you guys will do it for me.
Thank you, drama, for not letting me down. It was a beautiful, very beautiful episode. I believed everything.

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You and me both! And a lot of others. So glad you’re enjoying this as much as I am!

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Oh Ally, later I will send you an email. Need to ask you something privately 😅

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🤔

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Nothing to worry about. It is just a simply suggestion.
I will write later.

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I've said it once and I'll say it again. It's super annoying when people keep saying how handsome Jin Hyuk is as if it's the only characteristic worth mentioning. However, I can forgive it this time cuz that phone conversation was super adorable and I was giggling like a maniac. “You’re handsome. Really handsome. You’re the most handsome guy on Earth. You’re so handsome I can’t breathe! Jin-hyuk is the most handsome guy in the world!”

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What a beautiful and fantastic episode. This is what I signed up for at the start of the show and i am glad that I am getting exactly what I wanted.

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Ep10 is crazy in a good way! KS was one of the best kdrama ks and that balcony scene is hot!

Bogummy and Kyo really did great in portraying their roles. Looking forward for Ep11

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This episode...let me just bask in it for a second. This is everything I wanted and then some. Really, @lollypip, I don’t know how you can say anything intelligent after that last scene. What I would give to be a fly on the wall or on that balcony. I love how we can totally see the wheels turning in Jin hyuk’s head when he realizes the garden that they are referring to is the garden he had that very intimate conversation with the owner. The plan was flawed in several ways, but in kdrama-land it worked out, and I’m just fine with that. Fate intervened at the most opportune times in the show. Everything about the note, her finding it, him finding her, her finding him, well just beautiful and well done. The only slight issue I had was that lighting effect while they were on the wall. Totally overdone. Their faces are so dang gorgeous and you have to go and distract me with blurry twinkle lights? But other than that, this director has done no wrong in my book.

I love the secondary couple as well. Their relationship is so snarky! They’re both drawn to each other, and I hope they find common ground quickly.

Thank the universe for this gem at the end of 2018. 2019 is shaping up to be a phenomenal drama year.

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These last two episodes, it’s like someone watched Pretty Noona and said “No, this is how you actually face opposition from others or your worry about the other person getting hurt.”

So right they’re both choosing to be in a relationship that they recognize will be hard work. None of that noble idiocy in pretty noona or being unable to face societal pressures.

So good!

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Yes!! You know I had a similar thought? I had been 10 episodes thinking to myself "this is how a noona romance should be done".
When they first met, she knew he was younger yet she was the one asking him stuffs and promising she will pay back later; when they met again as big boss and new employee, she could have gone being formal and polite but understandable distant with him, she is the CEO and they didn't get to know each other so well in Cuba as to have to rekindle in Korea. She could have simply pay him back what he spent when she was in need in Cuba, but that's not what happened. She asked him for the ramyun "date", she memorized his number, she was crazy drawn to him all the time, and once they were talking and understanding each other, they decided they would endure opposition and remained honest with each other.
In Pretty noona, they took lots of time to prepare themselves for the opposition they will get because they were dating in secret and having even intimacy very often, but actually when the major block of their opposition appeared (the horrible mother) then everything crumbled. They couldn't survive, and honestly even until the end, I felt their romance was a failure and I was utterly disappointed with the show.
But here, man, I like it more and more every time.
Don't get me too fooled by myself, I never sing a victory song until it's done. Here the writers still have room for noble idiocy or any other histrionics that will ruin our story or fav characters... I hope no.
My point is: Boyfriend is a very well done noona romance.
Pretty noona who buys me food was a major let down😩.

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Yes! You’re right! Maybe that’s why Noona was such a let down. For 8 episodes you watched and believed with them that they can overcome, and yet at the first sign of trouble, she crumbled. Maybe it was a social commentary on how “hard it is to be a woman” but it didn’t make for a satisfying romance.

Whereas in this drama, it’s not like they unrealistically met opposition with no doubts on their relationship, but they think it through and still go back and recommit.

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Though I do completely agree that Pretty Noona has been a let down, I kind of interpret the story differently after a while. How the story panned out bugged me a bit. This might be an unpopular opinion, but I read the same thing somewhere, i just cant remember where.

Overcoming the family obstacle and the workplace discrimination story line may be what the show was supposed to accomplish (with all the lead up to both), but not delivering it to the audience was a splash of cold water to the face. I took it that despite good people having noble intentions, a person or two rarely changes the status quo. The drama is basically saying to the viewer to "get real". And i think thats the reason why we all felt so robbed. The show didnt deliver on the promise of a happy ever after we all assumed that it should.

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This show is ok. But Pretty Noona, smh, what a waste of 16 hrs of my life.. 😢 Heroine was TSTL.

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As couple, Jin-Hyuk and Soo-Hyun has a very strong foundation. It will help them to hang in there no matter what happen... whenever something external is happening with their relationship, they're able to bounce back... Good memories help them to do so...

So, I have a question... They finally met again in the cafe they had dinner & where JH left his note... But earlier, Soo-Hyun went to another cafe (but couldn't find him)... Did they also go to this another cafe?

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It was where they danced Salsa the night they first met.

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Secretary Jang + Dae-chan are just so cute. I really hated her callous comment about his education before, but she did regretted it and the apology was well done & well deserved. But the cincher is when she just suddenly decided to become the part-timer, aw!
She seems to be somebody who is not afraid of hardwork, and I don't think she's from rich family too, else evil mom would've encouraged the friendship. Totally rooting for this couple to start their version of Donghwa Hotel in the moon-snail world.
Jin-myung is like a younger version of Driver Nam, so cute. I hope he gets his own happy end with Hye-in.

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YES, to your —lurkinggondb— wishes for Secretary Jang and Dae-chan AND Hye-in and Jin-myung. PLUS, I would add, someone to love Driver Nam :)

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Driver Nam is the best cupid ever! I hope Mrs Kim will notice his life long love for her.

I also ship Secretary Jang and Dae Chan hard!

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I wasn't sold on the Jang/Da-chan relationship... right up until she faux-irritatedly wrapped up her purse and then dove right into serving tables, and did it WELL.

That is the sort of thing that makes people fall in love with you, and the look on Dae-chan's face? That blend of utter delight and amusement and surprise? That feeling is addictive, and he's going to want more of it, so he's done for. The best bit is that he was 100% ready for her to just leave when they realized she'd been called in as a part-timer, and it wasn't even on his radar as an issue - he has to run his shop, his part-timer flaked and didn't find a replacement, it's one of many irritations in a working day. He had no expectation of her saving him at all, he goes back into the kitchen having already moved on.

And then she steps up and steps up HARD. And I think enjoyed herself! And he's now completely in love.

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and he definitely done done when she finally apologised for the previous callous behaviour.

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Jin-myung flaking is one of the many reasons I do not like him. He thinks he is charming, I think he is annoying.

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Encounter never fail to amaze me! Loved how emotional this drama is yet its not as frustrating and depressing compared to other melodramas that i watched.

KS exceeded my expectation yet i can't get enough of it and wanted more. KS execution is on point and kudos to Bogummy and Kyo for not holding back and giving us their best.

One of the best drama's ive watched and will be on top on my rewatch list. KS and balcony scene still not over it. The best

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YES, you are so right LollyPip about this drama.

At first, I stopped watching this at episode 3 when the writer decided to use all the tropes available in her bag of tricks —scheming interfering mothers, an ineffectual ex-husband who practices noble idiocy to get the woman he loves off his mother’s radar and claws, then decides to woo her back, daughters being used for “political capital” NOT by the candidate himsef BUT by his hateful ambitious wife, AND there is the “Friar Lawrence” to our lovers in the person of Driver Nam.

Having said all that, I couldn’t get over the lovely cinematography, the great camera work and lighing, the soundtrack AND of course, our leads —Song Hye-kyo and Park Bo-gum are simply lovely together.
Hence, I am back savoring every episode.

I do wish, like you said, that Jin-hyuk and Soo-hyun decide to build the hotel in Cuba, leave all the nasties behind in Seoul and frolic in the beach at sunset and just love each other every single day :) :) :)

NOW, I am just loving Driver Nam. Shouldn’t we all take heed of the following advice:
>> He (Driver Nam) advises Soo-hyun not to worry about others and just to focus on the man she loves, and when she says she worries about Jin-hyuk, Driver Nam reminds her that this is what Jin-hyuk chooses. She worries that her family will suffer, but again Driver Nam tells her that what’s important is what she and Jin-hyuk want.

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I also loved their conversation. You can't prevent people you love to "suffer" consequences of their actions, although I understand you may feel guilty if they suffer a little bit because of you. But you can't really prevent some things to happen, unless you don't exist anymore.
If Jh wouldn't be in love with her, he would be with someone else, maybe also another divorced woman, or another one that comes from a dysfunctional family (since he is pretty much the rescuer type), and his family had to face supporting him or not, gossip or not, etc... They have to face it. He will have to marry someday, and life is not a fairly tale (although this drama seems like it).
But then again, their conversation was very realistic. You try to be good to others, but ultimately, you have to take care of yourself and pursue your own happiness. No one will do it for you.

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I don't love this drama as much as everyone else seems to. I DO appreciate that we have a couple that talk to each other and don't make unilateral decisions, as @lollypip mentioned, and I actually really feel invested in the bar owner/manager relationship, but the main couple feels...fake. Which, I know, sounds stupid...it's a drama, after all, but the acting feels more like what you'd find in a fancy car commercial or something. I don't know why. It keeps me from being fully invested. I just want things to be a little...messier...without the shenanigans of outside forces (which, honestly, rarely ring true to me in dramas, with this being no exception). All real relationships face far more mundane pressures.

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In other words, for all of the manufactured scenarios in this drama, it still feels sterile.

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I'm wondering if this is partly an age/perspective thing... I think I would've found this drama too mannered if I picked it up in my mid-20s, but now I'm Soo Hyun's age and they might as well be picking scenes wholesale from my dating life.

My earlier relationships were more like fizzy cocktails - awesome and exciting but also sort of instant gratification. Current relationships are more like really good liqueurs that you savor slowly. There is a hell of a lot more subtext these days, and that's what I'm getting out of Boyfriend. I actually think the leads are doing an absolutely fantastic job - PBG is nailing the boundary between youthful teasing and maturity, and SHK is thawing her professionalism into naivete really well.

Most dramas, the leads for the most part are on a level playing field; yes they may have a difference in family and wealth, but usually they're the same age and in that still-forming-as-people space. Much of the drama is focused on them influencing each other into becoming fully-formed people. In Boyfriend, Soo Hyun is absolutely fully-formed, and Jin Hyuk is a good 65% there. So it's less of a combined effort to grow up, and more a dance where the two of them try to figure out what parts of their personalities are fixed and what parts can morph to accommodate the other (and how).

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I'm over 40, been married for 15 years, had several stable long term relationships before that...I do not lack for experience. I'm also highly educated in literature and the arts. This particularly love story is not relatable to me. I get why other people like it, I really do. But my relationships have always involved a LOT more difficult compromises, and feelings, emotional reactions, preferences, etc. had to be ascertained through conversation. These two "intrinsically" knowing about each other and what they would want...it's the fantasy. It is. But there's something just not REAL about it. And I get that people like watching the fantasy!!! That's totally fine. Others (like me) have a hard time suspending the disbelief. :D

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I’m not saying you don’t have experience - I AM saying that dating in your 20s and dating in the latter half of your 30s has been enormously different, at least for me.

The relationship I’m in right now, I probably wouldn’t have tolerated in my 20s. I was more impatient, and curiously probably more inflexible in my views of how a relationship should work, which in my 20s forced a lot of conversations and compromises. Now I’m older and the context has just changed entirely. It would take too long to explain how, so all I can say is that this drama doesn’t have a whole lot of disbelief-suspension for me. When you’re a whole person (and in my opinion, the vast majority of people are not, in their 20s) a huge variety of things change.

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I'm with you on this - when the casting was announced, many people protested because they thought Park Bo Gum & Song Hye Gyo's personal relationship made this icky. But I was super excited because it sounded so good.

And now I'm the only who has gone "me". Somehow the chemistry isn't there (no, not because personal relationship). Despite the kiss, as a viewer, I'm not really buying the romance.

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Meh*

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Saw your comment on the beanie page, I'm not watching this drama but came across the kiss scene on Instagram and it was exactly as @mehgann has described it, Fake. I was so confused how is this scene so much raved about when I can't feel any chemistry. Again eaxctly what @mehgann said, it felt only like a fancy luxury commercial.

I'm not bashing the drama at all as I haven't watched any of it except for that one minute. Only your and Mehgann's comments were so much like how I had felt that I had to comment

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There are lots of good things, too. Like the fact that they are attempting to portray a mature couple who communicate well despite a rather wide age gap. I like the idea. But it's just TOO stylized...too perfect. Like the lives we pretend to have on instagram vs. the lives we ACTUALLY live. And I just prefer watching stuff that has that element of mess to it.

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'Too stylized' that's what it is. I have stopped watching since episode 6 I think, but until that point, everything looked too staged, poised and choreographed to me. Their encounter, perfect dates with the crazy beautiful sceneries, it all seemed too much organized when it should have been more chaotic. As their status and their love story itself bring so much history and frictions, I feel like there should have been a lot more in the picture, except it's not there, which the director/ DOP tried to spice up with the slow-mo scenes fillers.
And there are no real conversations, you know what I mean? I'm sorry for bringing up my ahjussi. But to me it was a romance lol, [at least in my head], and here these two people had so much to say to each other and their conversations were so much emotional, and deep, and worth listening to, that you feel connected to them even if there had been no mention of the word love. When 'boyfriend' was announced I thought they were going for a female version of My ahjussi, which I was very much looking forward to. But somehow, the way it has turned out, I was disappointed, I was left expecting something else, and not the story we are seeing now.
I guess I will never have the chance to enjoy a song hye kyo drama lol.

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@fay17 I agree. And My Ajusshi...that show was a freaking masterpiece. A perfect example of the type of show I want to see. Those characters had more depth when they were looking at each other and breathing with no dialogue than these two do during their best conversations. There was more weight...more meaning. You nailed it.

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' Those characters had more depth when they were looking at each other and breathing with no dialogue than these two do during their best conversations.'
Exactly! A drama about real-life people with real problems and life battles.

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I also loved My Ahjussi. It's my number one drama and it'll take a lot to knock it off that pedestal. But to compare My Ahjussi and Boyfriend is like comparing apples and oranges.

My Ahjussi got into the nitty gritty details of a few people's lives and we lived and breathed their triumphs and failures. We rooted for them to overcome their traumas. It was messy as you say.

Boyfriend is aiming for a poetic retelling of the encounter between two people and the ripple effect it had on the people around them. All the sharp edges are softened and we're invited to put on some rose-colored glasses and enjoy a fairytale.

Boyfriend isn't slice of life, it's not workplace drama, it's not a thriller, and it's in no way dark. It's a Cinderella story, just one where every character (excepting the parents) gets to be Cinderella a some point.

Just my two cents.

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I think you nailed my feelings with the words "TOO STYLISED" . I've noticed I pay more.attention to the scenery, their clothes - stuff like that, than to the actors and the dialogue. My attention is literally drawn away. I can name.specific outfits I loved, scenes where the lighting matched the background, scenes I'd love to draw if I could draw, and what not. 😅 But no standout scene amongst the characters themselves.

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@naomi123 That's a fair point. I think I'm just saying that I prefer shows like My Ajusshi, which I would argue depict depth, to this, which I would argue depicts a concept. I DO like this drama (I've been called a "hater", which is SO NOT WHAT I'M SAYING), but for me, the relationship lacks emotional weight. For others, they see it, which is cool.

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@naomi123 you're right, comparing the two of them is like comparing apples and oranges. And yeah, they're trying to romanticize two people's encounter here with slow, zen like background. I guess I just needed something more gripping here too, along with the beautiful visuals, so I could connect with them instantly..something like at least the first few scenes of goblin, the scene by the sea when Eun Tak first meets kim shin lol, and their conversation [if we're talking about mood of silence, melancholy etc]. The conversations between jin wook and the CEO here were less memorable for me to find their story compelling, so to say. But of course that being said, this is only my opinion.. and I was just conveying what I felt.

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I'm actually dealing with the opposite... I thought I wouldn't care about the real life relationships... but this is the first time I have difficulties with the main couple, because I know they are friends in real life... 😐
(I still like the show, but sometimes the real facts kick me out of the story... and mood... 🙁)

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I don't think you're alone in that. I personally don't care...I've mentioned before that I have a little bit of a hard time with Yoon Kyun-sang ever since I saw him kissing his cats on Three Meals a Day (put down that sword, boy, you're fooling no one!!!), but that's largely because I prefer his actual self to any of the characters he's played. lol! But, yeah, they're actors. If the story is pulling you in, you won't worry about that stuff. Maybe you're just not getting pulled in enough. (Neither am I!!!)

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And, in case anyone thinks I am serious about what I said about YKS...I'm not. I could watch him in anything. Except that one In Time With You remake he was in, which we just shouldn't talk about. Lol!

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Same. I don't have anything against the age difference, and I feel like the actors are good. I am just not getting the Sparks. That last kissing scene felt like "they" felt icky. Idk, it just felt "off" to me. I was very aware that they are actors playing a part, not lovers burning with love and passion. I hate to say that when people are digging it so much. I actually feelike PBG was bringing in more smoulder and maturity these past few episodes. Idk. I still like the drama, but I don't crave it.

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I did not understand the meaning of your critique, you talk about sensations (fake) ... of shallow looks and I wonder what you think you saw ... and why do you come here to comment on the episode 10 if you stopped seeing it. Do you know what I'm hanging out? that you are a hater who pretends to be a critical ... The realism of their dialogues, of their history, is in the banality. the chemistry between the characters is right in the unsaid. The fairytale frame is perfect and I prefer it aesthetically to a sleazy street or room because it gives a touch of elegance to a story that goes against the current and against prejudices ... I think I will find your comment in the next episodes, but under another name. I'm sorry that an adult person does this. I invite you not to think of couples in other dramas or to defend the real husbands, and to enjoy this wonderful drama and if you can not, stop writing as well as watching.

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If you'd READ my comments, you'd know that I've also said plenty of nice things about this drama. My complaint is with the OTP...the sterile nature of their relationship in contrast with how things in the real world work. Being critical is not bad. Don't tell me to stop commenting just because you don't agree. You don't agree. That's fine. But plenty of people on here HAVE agreed with me, so clearly I'm not just a "hater."

Also, I do not comment under other names. Literally NOTHING I've said screams "troll." I just don't like the OTP in this drama for various, well thought out, stated reasons.

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my comment here was directed to Midnight, sorry, but I think that you too are not REALLY understanding this drama ... I have seen many other Korean dramas in which the characters were really stylized, locked up in a frame, while here the stories and the characters escape certain classifications, like JH...you can not say that they do not represent reality, because as such the reality is not classifiable, not even the world of work.

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Gawd, WTH is wrong with people? Why are people taking things so personally, and going on the attack with so much rudeness? Immarurity? Is this what the young people are like these days?

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I know, right? Apparently I'm a "hater" because I happen to have an opinion that someone doesn't share. Not a hater. Still quite like many things about the drama. Just not digging the main couple. :)

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Agreed. I feel bad for the actors, though, because I think they are doing the best they can with terrible, stilted dialogue and directing. The writing is bad, and there isn't one whit of originality in the story, so all that's left is to enjoy the pretty. That kiss at the end was the first time the lead couple has been (1) not boring, and (2) credible as a couple who are attracted to each other. It was a darned good kiss!

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One thing that keeps the show at the top is that it is pretty much fantasy while ignoring big signals from reality. I mean they don't give a s*** about others but people don't do that in real life and ignore the society entirely. But that brings up some good conversations and pace. However, this episode was a little too far fetched in fantasy. Like what's with the employee going on a leave to talk to a person who might reject him and how easily was he convinced. But again that all was a good watch. Because I am seeing this show from an entire fiction point of view now. Plus SHK for me is acing it here, she has better chemistry and that's the first time I don't find her to be speaking in monotone hence becoming boring. Which is pretty much opposite to the character but she is great in showing gradual change in SH.

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For me, the point of the show is how ridiculous everyone else is being about a relationship that's essentially perfect. Yes, it's perfect. Not because it's an unrealistic fantasy (although it probably is) but because it highlights how unfair it is for this relationship to be judged the way it is by the society they're living in.

The age difference? Is negligible.
Her marriage? Was over four years ago.
The relationship? Strong and reciprocal.

These are two single adults who fell in love and the only issue here is his job in the company. And they've already established that, as CEO, it's quite easy for her to practice a hands-off approach for his career.

So, why is everyone having a respective breakdown over it? Why does the media thinks it's newsworthy? Why does the company think it's something that she should lose her job over? Why is her family and her in-laws kicking up such a fuss? It's because, as a woman, she's not supposed to live for herself. And - for me - that's what the show is actually about. So, yeah, the relationship is a perfect fantasy because that's the best way to showcase how unreasonable everyone is being about it.

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*cheers this point* So I'm having trouble buying the romance simple because I don't feel the so called chemistry between the lead actors. But in terms of plot, conceptualisation, dialogue and characterisation - just everything - yes. Your comment is SO accurate.

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Chemistry is subjective so I can see that. I think they have a nice chemistry between them but there's no sparks flying - I certainly didn't think their kiss scene was vaguely steamy (romantic? culminative? deep? Yes, but steamy? Not really).

Like a lot of shows where a couple encounters obstacles before they've barely begun, my biggest issue (although issue is maybe overstating it) is that they've tended to talk about this relationship rather than having it. I think the whole Cuba sequence from the time they reunited pretty well blew that concern out of the water for me. I finally feel like these are two people in love.

I really loved this episode and I actually love this couple - maybe even because of how quiet and understated their chemistry is.

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I found their chemistry amazing, they're two fantastic actors

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If chemistry is supposed to communicate lust, then I agree that they're not showing that chemistry. I do not get the impression that Jin Hyuk wants to seduce Soo Hyun, or that Soo Hyun is looking for a toyboy.

But if chemistry also encompasses desire and longing, then in my opinion they're nailing that. Him more than her, though that's understandable - she's been without that sort of companionship most of her life, while he's had emotionally and physically affectionate family and friends. And their skinship has been very low-key for a bunch of understandable reasons.

What they're building is very deep-rooted, and the slow burn really pays off for me.

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@leetennant, @alma74, Miranda - i didn't mean lust, but you make a good point about understated chemistry. Guess what I (fail to) appreciate in drama shows why I'm still single. 😅

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@greenfields | Unfocused & Bitter Killjoy
I think the cure would be to see so many dramas like Encounter, but unfortunately also the Korean dramas are being Americanized

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It is certainly not so strange that a great deal of talk is made of their reltionship, in fact the two of them live their story naturally, they are the others who insinuate or they think to manipulate people, unfortunately this can happen even in everyday reality. What I am hating is people who write poor husband on social media or who are offended by the kiss or think rhat they talk too much among themselves. I love their dialogues, from the banal to the more poetic ones, it's sad that today we prefer more rhythms and we underestimate the art of this drama, but I'm happy to read not to be the only one to love it

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Ah! I have all the heart eyes in the world for this drama. So subtle and so poignant. I love EVERYTHING about this OTP. Their maturity, their understanding of each other, their understanding of the world around them..it’s like SY was waiting for JH to complete her world as much as JH was waiting for SY to do the same! And damn that balcony scene! I predict a ‘morning after’ scene in the next episode 😃

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All I know is I watched the end kiss scene like 5 times for science. It's 1 minute 25 and has 28 cut scenes. You're welcome.

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I gif'd it for statistics and it was my reward for also gif'ing MoTA. Let's just say it took me way longer to gif the Boyfriend kiss than MoTA. For some reason I had to replay it - a lot.

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Probably cos 15 of the Boyfriend cut scenes are giffable and only like 2 of MOA's 28 are??? :P

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*38

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It's more like the MoTA one was awful and I wanted out.

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It was totally fine Chingu, what are you talking about! Totally fine.
-_-

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You two are such admirable researchers

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The kiss!!! I felt I had to turn my eyes away because that kissing is privat! I am not sure I have ever watched such a kiss in dramaworld ever. I know, maybe someone would mention "Oh Hae young again" kiss, but in there, they were a dysfunctional couple with lots of self steem problems and violent acts and speech toward each other. Not romantic at all.

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Oh there's plenty of kiss scenes that rival this for me. But I'm not watching the show so I have a slightly objective POV. Also by watch 5 and the 22nd cut scene it's not private anymore. It's hilarious.

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Yeah, you are right. It is unfair to compare because each story is different and people and characters are also different.
In this drama, for these characterizations we have, their kiss at the end of ep. 10 was very very very romantic and intimate. Other couples in their own way brings also the romantic with them, it is always a matter of point of view.
I am just still surprise because I have never seen such way in a k-drama.
Anyway, kudos for the actors. They did a good job.

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Sic, what are you doing here if you’re not watching this show?
*I ask brazenly despite not watching either*

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LOL. It is not so late to join the party.

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@javinne I’m in slump land, no drama has held my attention to watch past a couple episodes for months now.

But I might watch ep 10 by itself ;)

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*ahem* *MOA makes me do all sorts of crazy things*

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It's incredible, I had the same feeling, as if I was spying on a private moment between two lovers, the kiss was so natural, so real, never seen so in a drama. I have to do the performances to the director and the actors for making it so ... comparable to the legend of the blue sea but with more poetry

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I did not personally care about it (still not buying what this drama is selling), but your comment had me in stitches. Lol!!!

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After the ep 9 snoozefest this was such a relief - the first episode that didn't almost put me to sleep... I seem to be in the minority here but I gotta say the OTP here are just dull. The great scenes with Sec Jang/ Dae-chan and even Driver Nam/ Director Kim with all the spark and the chemistry just highlight exactly whats missing for the OTP.
JH is so good and nice that he is just so boring. Im very much team Woo-seok. Even though its the losing team at least he is interesting! SH is mildly more interesting but despite her title as a CEO she is ultimately still the poor little rich girl/ princess in tower who still needs rescuing.

I hate to piss on everyones lovefest for this show/ episode but I really am wondering what am I missing that everyone else seems to love about this show...?? The secondary characters are the only reason I would consider still watching / reading recaps.

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I feel exactly the same way...you're definitely not alone. I also like Woo-seok. I don't think he should be with the female lead, either, though. I think he needs someone spunky and fun, like JH's friend. She's a spitfire...I can tell. :) More of her, please!

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Do you miss a bit of romance and poetry in life, maybe? It is not so difficult to understand why the male character, so idealistic and romantic, without being far from reality, is actually more nonconformist than those who do it on purpose to violate the rules ... his "perfection" is imperfect in this society. ..

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I agree with everything you said except for Woo-seok. I really liked him, and still like him, but the last two episodes just made me sad for him. Yes, he's actually doing more behind the scenes to actually help SH retain her hotel than JH (because he has the power and money to do it), but he's still completely incapable of standing up to his mother, and thus can't offer SH anything more than the same miserable, emotionally abused (by the Evil MIL) existence that she had when they were married. Even when he decided to "free" SH, he wasn't strong enough to confront his mother, and so he faked an affair to create a scandal and give SH a divorce, even though he loved her. That's just pathetic and sad.

I can't ship him with anyone except himself - I would love to see him tell his mother to stuff it, and live his own life. That's a story that might really be interesting, unlike this draggy story of the Pretty But Most Boring OTP Ever.

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Haha!!! Yeah, I think I'm just wishing for more of him in general because I find him interesting. But I do have to agree with you. I take my Woo-seok comment back. :)

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OMG...JH just blew up her entire life. What ever happened to:
“the sea’s job is to make waves, mine is to think of you.”

His actions to interfere in an international contract (uninvited as a lowly new employee) are literally insane as they are written. If Taekyung Group get wind, they would have no problem tying the action to SH. Not only would SH lose the company (and everything else), Taekyung Group are ruthless and without doubt would also turn on him and his family.

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I wouldn't be so sure about it. He had met this man before, and even to a personal level (although short, they talked about personal matters when they met at the beginning), so going there to try to see him and explain the situation as a "friend" in a very personal letter as well... It was believable. I think that is why the sir saw his behavior as something romantic, he saw love for her in the letter and he was touch for the personal remarks in the letter.
Unless the Garden's owner would have complained, there is no way Taekyung Group could have linked him with the negotiations. He even used his deserved vacations, due to the article in the magazine. It was his prize.
His actions were risky for him, but not much for her, because they had no way to reach this person, and Jh reached him on a personal level.
Even if the answer would have been no, he would have shown (only her) that he cares for her success and is willing to take actions.
The result is too good to be true but his actions were logical. Had I have the chance, I would have done the same, because he knew this man from before.

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@javinne
If you are saying you would do this, you are also saying that if you were a CEO engaged in an appox $50 million project that has hit the rocks, that you would be OK with a junior staff making approaches behind your back – without legal cover, and a board of directors/investors who are already moving against you? (P.S. SH’s expenditure on the design is probably already well over a million)

If the approach was made with SH’s approval, or it was accidental that would be different. However, that is not how it was written. His actions were self aggrandizing, dangerous, and removed SH’s agency.

It is a big claim to say JH knew the man. JH only met the man once while on holidays…and JH thought it was meaningful. It’s a big step to say it’s meaningful to the landowner (eg. How many guys have met a girl once and thought it was meaningful…but to the girl….).

This was not a personal approach as JH approached the landowner’s (ex)law firm first. This would have been seen as so unprofessional and problematic that it would be on the project file and time sheets. Hence, any communication between the legal firm and Director Choi/Taekyung allys during the rectification discussions, JH’s approach would probably be mentioned.

This is not a case where the risk is the answer may be a no. The owner trashed a signed contract due to an email from a mid level employee that he felt slighted what was important to him. If an approach by someone so junior was salt in the wounds then that contract is dead. Its not just Asian society that has a sense of “face”.

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Maybe I am simple minded. On the other hand, if the business was so advanced, the land owner would have also verified the truth in this "email" from a mid level manager... since this was also not very clear, I would have to believe it was ok for JH to go the way he did, although I reckon he should have consulted with her.

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And by the way... Maybe I say I understand because I am also Latin, and I can believe how a person in Cuba would rethink a decision if he was approached that way. Although, then again, the whole thing was not clear from the business perspective🙄🙄🙄🙄. I may understand the Cuban mentality, but I didn't study anything related to business, so... Maybe I am just being silly and childlike because I found the whole thing romantic😂😂😂😂😂

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I'm reluctant to predict what'll happen next with this drama because the handful of scenarios I think of are never quite what actually plays out on screen. But I do wonder if this tendency of JinHyuk (to leap into action without consulting other people, come hell or high water) is going to be what leads us into the endgame.

I keep thinking back to that little throwaway comment SooHyun made as JinHyuk asked her to be in the 'some' relationship with him. She said "power struggle" as if, somehow, that was the most important thing out of anything else he was saying. Why would a woman deciding to enter into a relationship with a man focus on power struggle and not any of the 10x more romantic things he was saying? Very odd.

With JinHyuk's decision to blur their personal and business lives, and make a personal plea to Samuel to let the business deal go through for the land, he's landed them in a situation where he'll either be the catalyst to help SooHyun win re-election as CEO or he'll be the thing that brings her down. And rather than freaking out about how he's created an HR nightmare, SooHyun's decided to roll with it and see where the pieces land. Because if she can convince the board (and it looks like she may have at least a few allies) to think of JinHyuk's misstep as his earnest desire to save the hotel and all their money, then SooHyun has nothing to fear. She'll have won the power struggle.

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The trip to Cuba by an employee with literally zero negotiating or managerial power for the hotel was so ridiculous it was laughable. I mean, seriously, it was BAD. JH going to convince the hotel owner to sell the hotel to SH's group was Just So Totally Unbelievable that again I am thrown out of this story by the writer's clumsy character development and story telling. (What else has this writer done? I'm curious as to whether they are just a crappy writer, or if they are maybe relying too much on the popularity of the lead actors to carry the real weight of this drama).

Another badly written episode, with unbelievable, silly lines and actions for JH.

But at least they finally showed some on-screen chemistry with the kiss at the end. It's the first time I have had ANY belief that these two characters were attracted to each other. It still didn't do anything for me, but I commend the actors for rising to the challenge of the kissing scene.

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I agree with you wholeheartedly. It's clumsy writing that they are trying to disguise with pretty packaging. The camera work is lovely, and some of the secondary storylines are charming, but the stuff that is meant to have weight falls flat.

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JH, his character is also amazing for this apparently impulsive but well thought-out action ... He knew who the owner was and why he wanted to keep the garden and simply JH wanted to explain to him how she too keep it ... Mr. Samuel actually understood everything , that his was an attempt dictated by love ... noble and moving, but not irrational

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I only watch this drama for Secretary Jang and Dae Chan. They're so funny and cute in the same time. I love them because they seem real.

For me, the writter is writting the main couple in a too surrealist way like every scene has to be perfect.

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Standing ovations for Boyfriend team, especially the actors. I cannot believe they filmed this episode alongside with episode 1?

The atmosphere and feelings are so different, I’m in awe they could create such different two (or three) episodes. They were awkward in the first episode while so in love in episode 10.

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park bo gum and song hye kyo are very talented actors

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I find some of the comments above puzzling. To me, the depiction of the day to day, let's have a voice call and talk about nothing, let's sit micrometers away from each other and drink a beer or do nothing much is what real relationships are all about. I like it here precisely because such trivia is rarely seen in a kdrama.

SH+JH as a couple work because they are a pair of adults who communicate properly (in antithesis to HS+WS). Both still have room to grow in terms of openly expressing their feelings: JH needs to learn to stop concealing all his struggles from the people he loves - that it's ok to vent a little and that a trouble shared is a trouble halved; also his cryptic message to SH before setting off to Cuba by himself was not ok (getting some WS-ish vibes there for a sec). SH is still not there either in terms of spelling out how much he means to her. But they're both taking steps in the right direction; they'll get there eventually.

If anything, I wish the kissing scene was a lot shorter and less explicit.
Don't get me wrong, I think it makes perfect sense for the characters to have reached the phase where they can't keep their hands off each other, but I did not think one needed to make the point quite so graphically.

I like how many of the hotel employees silently support them, from Mrs Kim in PR, to the Sokcho manager. (his matter of fact 'I get why our CEO is so fond of you' was fun). JH is working his way back to her in his own way, gaining everyone's respect in the process.

JH solved the Cuba hotel problem because it was never a business issue, but rather an emotional one. His previous connection to Samuel and the garden made his intervention the logical step. JH answered 'I miss her' to Samuel's question because he completely gets what the garden means - a space to connect with someone dearly missed. After all JH spends all his lunch breaks in Sokcho retracing the steps of their dates there. Who else could better understand what that feels like? And I think Mr. Samuel sensed it - that he is the same brand of hopeless romantic as himself.

Listening again to the Omara Portundo song with the Kr translation of the lyrics in the video (as done for the poems before) is particularly fitting - an all or nothing kind of love, where you put your life on the line, the kind of love that is impossible to forget… the story also comes full cycle in a way: if the first time round the song was there to remind SH of the emptiness of her past, now it symbolizes her courage to live a new life of her choosing. Bonus points because Si llego a besarte also happens to be my favorite Omara piece. Sending a hug to whomever is responsible for the music selection deserves.

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It's funny you say this, because I'm guessing one of the comments you are referring to is mine, and most of the things you mention are the things I also like about this drama. The problem for me is not in the mundane, it's in the overarching "BIG BADs" vs. the OTP.

1. I don't buy that the media would have this big of an issue with a divorced woman dating a single, consenting adult (other than the fact that he is technically a subordinate, which actually SHOULD be a problem because it IS a problem...he should move on from that job or she should...it's not appropriate in real life).

2. I don't buy that anyone in Jin-hyuk's position would be that mature, calm, or stable in these circumstances. I've met a LOT of men his age (in fact, it's my job to work with them), and they just...aren't. They aren't. It doesn't ring true. And frankly, if the writers were smart, they would use THAT and the problem I stated above to be the major conflicts rather than all of that other noise. It's okay for a young guy to be immature. The fact that he isn't keeps making me look for hidden problems in his home life. Lol! (but seriously)

3. I find Park Bogum's acting in this to be a bit shallow (in his defense, it's partly the way the character is written), and Song Hye-kyo a little stiff. Her acting issues suit her character, so it doesn't bother me as much, but there are just times when the smiles from him look fake and forced. I am liking him much more when he is faced with some kind of painful reality or dilemma, but the writers are avoiding that, and to me, that detracts from his performance.

4. Most importantly, I simply don't believe that these two people would have fallen in love. I think the storyline of WHY makes total sense, but their personalities are both so withdrawn from other people that I don't understand why all of a sudden they wouldn't be. I think, had they made his character a bit more worldly (i.e. had he been a bit of a player or something prior to meeting her), I'd believe it. But to have her inexperienced because of an early marriage and him because...they never say why...I just don't believe the characters.

All of that said, I like parts of the drama. I feel like I'm making it sound like I hate it, and that's not true. I like what it's trying to do, I'm just not feeling the main romance at all.

Side note: Nam is a gem and I LOVE LOVE LOVE him. I would watch this drama just for him.

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To each his own.

I have a different understanding of their personalities, JH's in particular, and that is the reason why for me this works. To be fair, this may be saying more about me than the actual show.

First, JH was always a bit of a loner, someone who hides behind the camera or in a book observing life rather than living it. Not unfriendly, but he needs personal space. He is mature for his age (in some respects) and that is possibly to do with how his parents were working a lot and he had to be sensible and responsible from early on. Still, he is particularly emotionally intelligent and open to the world.

Second, they met in Cuba. Being on a holiday in a magical place where no one knows you gives one the license to be someone else for a bit. To let out the carefree, fun-loving version of you. This might look different for an introvert vs an extrovert but it's pretty universal. It was supposed to be an one-off thing so they could just enjoy the moment, discarding who they are and what it all means in the real world. And it was magical. They genuinely liked each other. And that is the foundation for everything else.

The ice queen who never smiles caught a glimpse of JH dancing with the little girl and smiled. She liked him before they had spoken a single world, that's why he trusted him when they actually met later that evening.

JH saw her walking by and she caught his eye - because she looked beautiful, somewhat familiar although he could not place her, but also really lonely. It was enough to notice her again on the wall (he was there first, shown in the foreground as she sits down).

When they landed back in reality it took them quite some time to negotiate their new positions (boss-employee) but they had the memory of Cuba as a reminder of the prize and that it was worth it.

It was her who took the initiative then, with the ramyeon date, teasing him. Had to be her call, because of who she is. And I kind of love her for it even when there were moments it felt awkward and slightly inappropriate. [The way I see it, she was ready for change and him coming along was the excuse she needed to set it into action.]
Once that message was clear, he turned into the pursuer. He is my-way-JH and once he set his mind to something he will follow through no matter what. This was needed because, although it was clear that she was attracted to him, she had all the baggage of the past and decades of passiveness to battle through.

By the end of ep.10 they are finally in the place where they want to be, dropping the last barriers between them. Cherry on the cake that it's back in Cuba too.

But ultimately, two introverts ended up together makes sense, precisely because of the details of who they are as people.

About JH's fake smiles: half the time his smiles are just for show on purpose. It's one the character's main traits - hiding his real feelings behind a small, smiling harder when he is unhappy. I think PBG...

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Ha! the first time ever I got a comment cut off for being too long. Must be love.

"I think PBG brings a lot of nuance to JH."

I started watching this show because I adored (and strongly identified with) SH. JH was there just to make her happy and as long as she liked him he was ok. But as we went on, I started to identify with JH too - the hard working parents who love for their kids, the love of books and slight detachment from the world, the stubbornness of doing your own thing despite the social expectations. I now love both characters a lot. It's ultimately because they are smart, genuinely good people that feel real to me; they are a better version of myself I could aspire to.

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This was perfect, Charlie. Thank you.

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congratulations, beautiful comment in which I found myself from the first to the last word, even in outlining the character of JH. I'm afraid that who answered above are nothing more than an hater who resumes clichés reading around without having truly immersed himself in the drama story

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Dear @alma74,

Not everyone who disagrees with you is a "hater." I like many things about this drama, which is why I'm still watching, why I'm reading the comments, and why I'm still commenting myself. I just don't happen to buy the OTP yet. I feel the characterizations are falling short in some way...it feels partially like a writing issue and partially like an acting issue. I normally like these actors, which is why I am sticking with it. But you should really grow up. Having a difference of opinion is perfectly normal and acceptable. I don't see that I've been rude to anyone who disagrees with me on here (unlike you), so why you seem to think my opinion shouldn't count is beyond me.

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@Mhegann I like constructive criticism, but I have not read a single one. The performance is high, the script is a masterpiece, and all the examples made seem the usual cliché ... you have not been able to well motivate your feelings, which so, remain yours and I do not think they can be shared

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Excellent!

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@alma74 If you can point to ANYTHING I've said about this drama that is not constructive criticism, I might start taking you seriously.

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@mehgann
Ok, let's see together what you said in my opinion of little constructive and that is well suited to an odor for its own sake. Maybe you can do a review. Let's start from the end:
-These two "intrinsically" knowing about each other and what they would want ... it's the fantasy.
Human relationships can not be classified according to our personal experience, although I am married and older than you, I see myself in SH and I understand the feelings that drive her towards JH. Their dialogues are almost trivial, but the inner world behind them ll in turmoil and this the two magnificent actors leave it to see even with a gaze. Deciding together what to do as two engaged, is wonderful in its simplicity and he understands that she has never really lived in her life of relationship. It's extraordinary in its simplicity and variety even their telephone conversation, it's all part of a couple's game and they too make compromises with themselves and follow their own feelings.

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You are so good at interpreting the drama. My views are similar.

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Let me say that I love your comments!

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I'm dissatisfied with the drama too, and just watching it for PBG and the pretties.
Gotta agree as much as I like PBG, I couldn't stand his sunshine perfect boyfriend role here. He is much better in darker, angsty roles.
I think this drama tried too hard to package itself as a fairy tale romance. I thought the cheesiest moment has to be when driver Nam plays the fairy godmother with a car-pumpkin AND a change of clothes.

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read the description Charlie makes of JH above, I think he understood it more than you. It is not perfect for this society. is a solitary ... a free spirit who loves books, sensitive, without being introverted ... I think Pbg has chosen him for these characteristics so close to his way of feeling ... he is young and good, he will be able to do a thousand different characters in career

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Agree with this. I loved PBG in Moonlight Drawn by Clouds, and was very excited that he was going to be in this drama, which sounded interesting. I think a good bit of my dislike of this drama is the disappointment I feel in seeing him - IMO - given such a poor script and direction, when this could have been a role that was fantastic for him.

I said it before, but for some reason I expected him to be a free-lance photographer, who was young and didn't have money, but who traveled around the world seeing things and meeting people. Making him an brand-new-to-the-workforce, low level employee at the company where SH is the CEO totally ruined what I thought was going to be an original and compelling story, about two people with very different upbringing, social status, careers, and experiences, and showing how their differences appeal to one another. But no, we get yet another tired rich/poor, boss/employee story, complete with the Evil-Beyond-Anything-Believable-in-Real-Life Chaebol Mother doing her best to control/ruin everyone's life.

So, I'm disappointed I didn't get to see the drama I was expecting, with PBG in the role I wanted to see him take on, and which he is, IMO, more than capable of delivering.

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'I said it before, but for some reason I expected him to be a free-lance photographer, who was young and didn't have money, but who traveled around the world seeing things and meeting people. '
Yeah, it's too safe and secure this way, that he got to be the perfect hoobae, who got into the company due to his talent and merit, so I bet the CEO wouldn't ever have a problem to maintain social status. I feel like it would have been more exciting if he was a bit of an adventurer, bohemian and whimsical, like a vagabond or a free spirit.

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'I think this drama tried too hard to package itself as a fairy tale romance.'
Totally agree with you @kai55!

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Lastly, I do understand where you are coming from. Every shot in this show is precisely choreographed for some symbolic purpose. To you this looks too pat; so it feels too perfect and fake. To me this is layers of meaning and visual poetry - and a large part of the appeal of the whole thing. But then again I grew up adoring symbolist poetry and I am pretty weird to begin with. Neither position is wrong. Because it is an personal opinion.

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I don’t know if that was addressed to me, but I’m an English lit art history major, avid reader ( if I didn’t make all As in elementary or middle school, my punishment was no recreational reading for the next report card period, because that was the worst possible punishment my parents could inflict). Poetry is my particular love, and one of the things that made me fall in love with Korean dramas was how seamlessly they often wove beautiful Korean poems (previously unknown to me) into the story.

This drama’s use of literature is awkward and only tangentially related to the plot. It comes across exactly the same as the awkward product placement in this drama. The writer is not very good at incorporating either.

I have seen it done beautifully, as a key part of the story and character development. Here it’s just thrown in to make the story and characters seem more interesting than they actually are. It’s kind of funny to see people think it gives dcomplexity and depth to such superficial, lazy writing.

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Seeing that you're a poetry and literature enthusiast, I would love to know about your favorite kdramas! Hope you can share. :)

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Thank you! I have the same opinion of this drama, and I thought I was alone. I feel frustrated by the lazy writing. I'm the last person who EXPECTS my dramas to be profound, but this one seems to think it is when it really is not.

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@vespertyne
Art and literature are my bread and this drama is a rare gem (there is a phrase in my country: do not give pearls to pigs). If you talk about other Korean dramas in which poetic quotations are just as well integrated into the story, where every image hides a precise symbolism and in which it causes the reciting power of the two, you can forget that they are two actors, then I can believe you are not a detractor of the last hour. I can not believe that those who love poetry do not appreciate this drama which is a hymn to the poetry of love.

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I find Park Bogum's acting in this to be a bit shallow (in his defense, it's partly the way the character is written), and Song Hye-kyo a little stiff. Her acting issues suit her character, so it doesn't bother me as much, but there are just times when the smiles from him look fake and forced. I am liking him much more when he is faced with some kind of painful reality or dilemma, but the writers are avoiding that, and to me, that detracts from his performance.

This. Totally with you on this one. I also feel PBG shines more in darker roles like someone below said. So him being a Grade A+ boyfriend is a bit unrealistic, in fact, everything about this drama is unrealistic I guess. Not the romance part, of course, it's perfectly okay for two people of different age, mindset and status to fall for each other. .. but the way the story has been depicted is a bit shallow, and one directional. I wish the writer chose a totally different background/ context altogether. Like maybe choosing a realistic scenario, and SHK's character being a normal day-to-day girl would have helped.

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That was my problem with PBG in R88, his smiles and innocence looked fake and forced...

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Oh, that's interesting. I didn't notice as much in R88 because I saw his character as basically autistic, and for me, that would be a normal thing in an autistic kid.

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Oh no haha, I thought he was perfect as Taek on reply. I mean he was a sweet kid there, and a quiet one who didn't like to talk much, rather sit in a corner of the room, doing his thing while his friends would be having fun. As Taek he did need to show a lot of nuances, like when he was playing the game or the times when he would be communicating with his father, or taking care of deok sun. So no complaints there, lol. It was a great role for him, I feel.

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@mehgann Quite interesting, because I too saw him as autistic right up to the 'reveal'. After that he felt completely fake to me because he suddenly stopped showing any autistic characterisms.

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That's true. That wasn't PBG acting, though. And like @fay17, I thought he did the nuances (communicating with the dad, reacting to others without speaking) pretty well in R88. A little fake, but in the same way that a kid that wasn't quite comfortable with social interactions would be.

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@mehgann I guess we should agree to disagree from here on 😅

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Wait, do you mean PBG playing his role after the "reveal," or the older actor? Because I thought you were referring to the older actor's performance, and now that I think about it, I TOTALLY see what you mean.

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sometimes I wonder if you use the terms randomly or if you know what you are talking about. The autists do not have their strength in the socialization, Taek puts his friends above all else, is intoverso, not autistic, is a good, sensitive and sweet, but totally detached from everyday life because of his work that leads him to pass so many hours on chess ...

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My best friend in HS had Aspergers. I'm no clinical professional, but many of the behaviors and mannerisms in R88 were similar to her, so I responded to the character in that way.

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superficial him and rigid her? The character of him is deep, every sentence or action has a specific value ... she belongs to a society in which rigidity is perhaps her only weapon, but in the continuation of her story with JH is melting more and more. PBG is one of the few Korean actors capable of interpreting each character in a totally different way, others do not even try. Here it is totally immersed in JH

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@mehgann I also agree with @alma74 that Taek wasn't autistic probably. It's just how his social life has been, and he takes his time to speak. I don't know much about asparagus syndrome, so you'll have better knowledge of that. I think if you mention a bit about her manners or behavior pattern, maybe we could try to find the similarities. :)
Oh but we digress here. Sorry for spamming lol.

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Lol! Not spamming! An interesting conversation. Asperger's Syndrome is a VERY mild version of autism...autism is a spectrum. People with Asperger's are often quite social, but they are a little behind. They are sometimes slow to respond in social situations and may seem a bit awkward, but they aren't incapable of social interaction. Also, things that seem obvious to others aren't always noticeable to them. My friend, for example, could never understand sarcasm. It just didn't compute for her. I doubt most people who met her would think she was autistic at all...she is smart, successful, and very much involved in the lives of her closest friends. But they would notice that she at times is almost immature in the way she approaches things. Honestly, she acts a lot like Taek. :)

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If you're interested, here is some more information.

http://www.autism-society.org/what-is/aspergers-syndrome/

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Thank you for the explanation! Um I never thought about it while the drama was airing, but I guess it's possible to assume that he had this characteristic. But if that was the case I feel like the writer would have addressed it? Since it was not discussed at all, I thought that it was more like one of his traits and that he had a childlike innocence. Since all he did was playing baduk at tournaments, that's how he became a reserved kid.
But having said that, although his responses were slow and he seemed a bit awkward, there were times he was quite perceptive of situations. Like he was very keen to catch up on deok son's needs. So that's how he managed to grab her attention by making her realize that he's taking care of her. Like when he reaches her first when she was standing alone and cold in a telephone booth, or when she was facing that creepy Burberry-man in the corridor, he stayed beside her.

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@mehgann
do not say nonsense, the character of choi taek in reply88 does not have any characteristics of asperger syndrome, I think that either you have not seen it or you're right about it and you shoot randomly, here are the symptoms:
-Difficult social interaction (understood as a relationship)> choi taek socializes a lot
-Communication problems.> Choi taek speaks little but when it does it is very communicative and rational
-Ripetitive and stereotypical behavior.> Choi taek is often unpredictable
-Activities and limited interests.> Is a baduk chess genius, but has other interests (cinema for example)
-Hyperactivity and attention deficit (he is forced to concentrate for hours to play baduk,when he does not play he spends time with his friends, he eats or sleeps, that is ordinary )
-Anxiety and depression. (he's happy and joyful)

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@fay
maybe choi taek is not a very ordinary boy, simply because he is a genius, but he has no characteristic of autism or asperger. we say that he's awkward and he's clumsy, like a nerd for example Sheldon in big bang teory, maybe because he can not wear a tie, or he wears a shirt on the reverse. maybe not knowing how to tie shoes could make you think that he can not do things too ordinary, he just does not care if they are fastened, or he does not care to park the car, are aspects of his personality not a pathology, but when he wears a suit for a tournament or he has to go from his beloved, he is very determinated.

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I know Taek well, I have seen your Reply 88 many times because of him, and I assure you that he miss the foundations of Asperger. In fact, Asperger's syndrome has nothing to do with the lack of logic or the inability to manage articulated thoughts or language, let alone with low memory or intelligence, it's true, but it manifests itself above all with the qualitative compromise of social interaction. and the lack of cognitive empathy (that is, the ability to read the mind of others).The behavior of Taek for those who know him, is the opposite: he is very empathetic, he feels what others feel and socializes too much even with strangers. That's all. Sorry for digressing out of the Topic. Park Bo Gum is a very talented actor because he changes his soul to every role, Jin Hyeok is so different from Taek, he has an extrovert personality, but sometimes he loves to stay alone, while Taek did not like to stay alone, but as he has in common extraordinary sensitivity.

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I do not buy that anyone in Jin-hyuk's position would be mature, calm, or stable in these circumstances. I've met a LOT of men his age, and they just ... are not. They are not. It does not ring true.
HERE THE PROBLEM IS YOU DON'T UNDERSTAND THE CHARACTER OF JIN HYEOK or you have not been careful.
Many men of his age are not mature, he is mature thanks to two things: culture and family. If you remember, it's just hinted at the health problems of the mother and her feelings of guilt because the father made sacrifices to keep him at school. What's unrealistic about this? I'll tell you, nothing. And his head as well as his appearance are among the things that have impressed most SH.
3. I find Park Bogum 's acting in a bit shallow (in his defense, and Song Hye - kyo a little stiff. Her acting issues suit her character, I know she does not bother me as much, but there are just times when I look fake and forced. HERE I DO NOT LIKE HOW YOU HAVE REASONED. PARK BO GUM has fallen perfectly into his character and so SHK, in fact the first is solar, not superficial, often smiles because he loves the life and the beauty that surrounds him, is a very deep character indeed, because it is not for everyone to slip all above and appreciate the beauty of what we have. She is stiff, because it is closed to hedgehog to protect itself, this is normal in a person who has been so hurt by others, only one like him, outspoken and kind, could break the wall that is built, in fact it is always melting more. I could opt to continue, but I end it here. I agree with @Charlie and I still invite you to go beyond appearance.

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Thanks @charlieblue17 for putting into words some of what resonates with me and thanks @lollypip for the recap.

Yes about the kiss scene not needing to be so long and meticulously filmed. I felt the length and detail of it detracted from the moment rather than added to it.

Yes to Jin Hyuk's working his way back, ... actually I feel it's just him being his normal helpful, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed sort of thing. It's all in his authenticity and great attitude. One of those rare shows that may not need deeds of derring-do or grand gestures to win, but just being one's own good self? Woo Seok could take a leaf from Jin Hyuk's book.

Yes to Jin Hyuk's answer to Samuel being the one that resonated with Samuel best and showed that he understood Samuel's sentiments.

I'm personally not such a sentimental one for hopeless love, but at least this show does it not to sappily. 😃

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You make some good points, though I'm still a bit skeptical about the whole Samuel thing...

First off, the Cuba hotel contract had already been signed, and I believe the garden was part of the contract. In that case, neither side can change their plan just because they want to.

I remember JH briefly talked to Samuel, but they're still strangers, and I don't know that they formed such a deep connection from that one conversation that Samuel would even remember him.

And what's with trespassing on someone's property? JH is lucky he didn't anger Samuel even further and Samuel didn't call the police to have him removed.

I think the biggest thing that bothers me about JH's actions is that he thinks he, as an entry level employee, has the ability and skill to save a big international contract. And that he didn't feel the need to consult anyone at the company (including SH) who are more experienced in this negotiation with these Cuban partners.

The company only had one chance to talk to Samuel, and JH thought that he was best equipped to do it out of everyone and didn't need to run it by anyone. I think that was very presumptuous of him.

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I don't disagree with this, and I did explicitly complain about him not discussing it with SH first.

JH has his own way of thinking that is almost always slightly outside of the box but that usually makes sense in retrospect. He also is very much in favor of the saying "asking for forgiveness is better than asking for permission." He wanted to help her and thought of one way to reach the owner. I assume he did not think that he could just waltz in and solve the problem that had everyone else swamped - he had one idea based on his unique knowledge of the owner and went for it on the off chance that it would help. Worst case scenario he would be ignored; since he is a nobody it was unlikely that his actions would reflect back on the company.

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