Rating:
Average user rating 2.5
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My Absolute Boyfriend: Episodes 27-28

Making our heroine the owner of her robot somehow seems to exacerbate everyone’s problems rather than solving them. Problems are piling up and there’s still the ever-present danger that being unmasked as a robot will result in confiscation and destruction. But there’s a bigger threat to our new couple’s romance, and no, I don’t mean her ex-boyfriend and his gigantic ego.

 
EPISODES 27-28 RECAP

When shooting is canceled for the day, Zero-Ten corners Da-da on set and asks her to go on a date with him. He hugs her despite her struggles, and he only lets go when Young-gu confronts him. Da-da leaves, and Young-gu says, “You aren’t Ma Wang-joon, are you? Wang-joon never acts disrespectfully towards Girlfriend.”

In response, Zero-Ten grips Young-gu’s wrist and forces him to his knees. He notes that Young-gu is an older (ie, weaker) model, and warns him not to get in his way again.

The real Wang-joon is still locked up at Diana’s house. He has a television so he flips through the channels looking for news that he’s missing, and he’s surprised to find nothing at all. When his next meal is delivered, the maids ask for his autograph, and it gives him an idea.

He offers to take a picture with them and invites the guard to join them. He pretends the lighting is bad and maneuvers so that he’s closest to the door, and while the others pose, he runs out, locks them in, and quickly texts the message to someone before more guards catch him and lock him up again.

Bo-won hears from Director Go that he hacked into the company email, and learned that the Zero-Ten model that Diana ordered has Ma Wang-joon’s face. At the same time, Young-gu gets Wang-joon’s text saying that he’s been locked up, and he figures out that the “Wang-joon” on set must be Zero-Ten.

Da-da goes to the hospital, where Eun-dong is parading Hwa-ni in front of reporters. Hwa-ni is still pretending to have been terribly injured by Wang-joon’s one punch, but he’s getting antsy at the forced inactivity, so Eun-dong warns him not to get careless. Da-da eavesdrops as Hwa-ni tells Eun-dong that he insulted Da-da in order to make Wang-joon hit him.

She heads home feeling responsible for Wang-joon’s bad situation, and she finds Zero-Ten waiting at her studio. Because she feels bad, she goes with him when he asks her for just one hour, against her better judgment.

Determined to escape Diana’s mansion, Wang-joon starts to break a window, but a guard is standing outside so he abandons that plan. He hears a commotion in the hallway, and when the door opens, he’s never been so happy to see Young-gu. He still fusses at Young-gu, though, asking why he took so long (and HAHA, Young-gu’s face), but he softens it with a fond grin.

They’re about to escape when Diana returns and tells Young-gu that she knew he’d show up to play the hero. She says that someone is about to get hurt, and asks Wang-joon and Young-gu if it’s a good idea for them both to be here.

Wang-joon figures out that she must have done something to Da-da, and Young-gu tries to rush out, but Diana stops him. She says she’s got him attacking her guards on surveillance, a not-so-veiled threat to show people he’s a robot and get him confiscated by the head office.

Young-gu admits defeat and asks Diana to let Wang-joon go. Wang-joon doesn’t want to leave Young-gu there, but Young-gu insists and holds out a hand to shake. Wang-joon takes it, and Young-gu slips a note into his palm — Da-da’s location.

Calling Young-gu “Ken” again, Diana questions him about his newfound emotions, but Young-gu just says he feels sorry for her. He tells her that he won’t be playing her games because he’s not her toy, and suddenly, the power goes out. YES, Bo-won to the rescue!

When the lights come back on a few seconds later, Young-gu is gone. Diana screeches at her guards to find him, then tells Director Park to contact Zero-Ten and tell him to get rid of Da-da. Young-gu joins Bo-won outside and catches him up on what’s happening, then follows Wang-joon to rescue Da-da.

Zero-Ten has driven Da-da way out to the middle of nowhere, and when she’d complained, he’d snapped at her sharply to be quiet. He eventually stops the car and tells Da-da that he doesn’t even know where they are, he only knows that they’re all alone. Da-da keeps calm and gets out of the car, saying that it reminds her of that time they went on a trip together.

She mentions the peanut butter sandwiches she made that Wang-joon enjoyed, and when Zero-Ten agrees that they were delicious, she realizes that he’s not Wang-joon, because Wang-joon is allergic to peanuts. Zero-Ten moves closer, crooning that it’s time to do what they came here for, and Da-da makes a run for it.

She swerves off the road, and when it seems safe, she tries to make a phone call. But Zero-Ten easily catches up and rips the phone from her hands. She asks who he really is, but he just keeps reaching for her, and she cowers in fear.

Just then a car pulls up, and this time it’s the real Wang-joon. He’s shocked to see a robot wearing his face, but Zero-Ten just tells him not to get in the way. Wang-joon tries to stop him so Zero-Ten grabs him by the throat, lifting him into the air and offering to get rid of him, too, and take his place.

Wang-joon gasps to Da-da to get away, but as she realizes that Zero-Ten is a robot, she gets a brilliant idea. She jumps up, and before he can react, she kisses Zero-Ten. The robot immediately lets go of Wang-joon, powers down, then powers back up again. He looks at Da-da with the sweetest smile and says, “Hello, my Girlfriend.”

Young-gu finally catches up to them, and when he also calls Da-da “Girlfriend,” Da-da finds herself in a very weird love triangle (square?). Zero-Ten is staring at her accusingly, Wang-joon is just horrified, and Young-gu looks like he might cry. LOL.

The next day, Director Go arrives at Diana’s mansion to confiscate Zero-Ten, and he declares that they’ll never do business with her again. Wang-joon — who I guess returned Zero-Ten — is angry at Diana for using his face. She retorts that he lost his girlfriend to a robot because he made her hide for seven years, and that at least Zero-Ten didn’t hide like Wang-joon does.

She says he should be grateful that she used a robot that looked like him to sway Da-da’s heart, since he’s such a coward. Wang-joon spits that Diana’s the coward, hiding and playing with dolls. He vows to win Da-da back, telling Diana not to use robots to play around with people anymore.

Wang-joon heads to Da-da’s studio and pulls her aside to talk privately. He asks if she’s okay, but he’s not talking about the attack last night — he’s concerned about her relationship with Young-gu. He says that last night taught him how dangerous a robot can be, so he doesn’t want Young-gu around her anymore, when a single kiss is enough to change a robot’s loyalty.

Da-da says that Young-gu is different, though she can’t explain why. Wang-joon replies that if she continues this way, he’ll be forced to do whatever it takes to separate them.

After he leaves, Bo-won asks Da-da if Wang-joon would really take action against Young-gu. She just sighs heavily, and awww cute, Bo-won and Young-gu both go in for a hug (Young-gu wins, hee).

Bo-won mentions seeing an article saying that Wang-joon may have to leave Doctor AlphaGo Season Two, and that Hwa-ni is in talks to take his place. Da-da takes them to the hospital where they set off the fire alarm, and when Hwa-ni runs out of his hospital room in a panic, the reporters are there to take plenty of pictures proving that he’d perfectly fine, ha.

Yeo-woong is excited to see that Hwa-ni’s scam has caused the public to turn against him, but Wang-joon sighs that it’s true that he hit Hwa-ni. Yeo-woong warns him not to say that to anyone else, which reminds Wang-joon of Diana’s accusation that he lost Da-da because he’s always hiding from people.

He calls Bo-won to meet him in the park, where he asks if it’s true that Young-gu will be sent back to the head office if anyone finds out he’s a robot. He infers from Bo-won’s reaction that it is true, and that Young-gu would never be allowed to return. From his car, Wang-joon calls Yeo-woong and instructs her to arrange for a press conference at the drama set tomorrow.

When Bo-won sees the reporters, he immediately knows that Wang-joon is responsible and runs to his dressing room. Yeo-woong is already there trying to find out why Wang-joon called in reporters, but he’ll only say that it’s to tell them something he’s been hiding.

Da-da is doing Young-gu’s makeup for the day when Bo-won tells her what’s going on, so she goes to ask Wang-joon what he plans to reveal to the reporters. He tells her to watch and find out, but she begs him not to do this, and he says that all he sees in her eyes is worry for Young-gu. He apologizes for making this decision without asking her.

He finds Young-gu outside his dressing room, also looking worried, but Wang-joon walks right past him and heads to where the reporters have gathered. With the cast and crew watching, including Bo-won and Da-da, he says, “I would like to reveal… the person I love.”

Da-da shakes her head, silently begging him not to say her name, but he continues, “She’s special effects artist Eom Da-da.” Kyu-ri and Yoo-jin exclaim and turn to Da-da, outing her to the reporters, who all turn to snap pictures of her.

Later in the on-set studio, Yoo-jin asks Young-gu if he’s okay after hearing Wang-joon’s confession to Da-da. Young-gu just drops the scissors that he’s bent nearly in half in his fist, and leaves.

Da-da is in Wang-joon’s dressing room, and she thanks him for not revealing that Young-gu is a robot, but she’s angry that he would stir up more gossip when they just solved their Hwa-ni problem. Wang-joon says that he only told the truth, and when Da-da has to remind him again that they broke up, he says he’s never felt broken up and he’s only fallen more in love with her.

He tells her that his acting career and his fans are important, but not as important as she is, so he wants to reveal everything in his heart. He says he’ll come to her house tomorrow for her dad’s memorial, but Da-da tells him not to.

He goes to distract the reporters so that Da-da can slip out, and Young-gu finds him. Wang-joon says that they should each fight for Da-da in their own way, and that he’s confident Da-da will choose him since he’s human. He joins the reporters (at least he admits that his love is one-sided) and Young-gu clutches his chest, feeling something grinding inside.

Hwa-ni whines to Eun-dong that the CCTV footage from the hospital shows Da-da setting off the fire alarm. He wants to expose them, but Eun-dong shows him an article about Wang-joon’s confession, thinking they can use this to force Wang-joon to retire.

While making her father’s favorite foods for his memorial, Da-da asks Young-gu why he’s not asking her about Wang-joon’s press conference. He says he’s curious what she’ll do, but he trusts her, and he just wants to spend some quiet time with her after everything that’s happened recently.

They hear Bo-won downstairs, here to remind them that the first installment for Young-gu is due tomorrow. Young-gu tells him that they’re waiting for a ghost, and Bo-won freaks out and jumps into Young-gu’s arms, hee.

Wang-joon shows up for the memorial (against Da-da’s wishes, what a surprise) and he’s brought a suit for Young-gu to wear. Da-da performs the ceremony, then Wang-joon remembers that she gets sick on this day every year, so they all tell her to go rest.

Later Yeo-woong retreats to the Love Room to field phone calls from reporters wanting all the details of Wang-joon and Da-da’s relationship. Bo-won joins her, saying that he’s sticking around to make sure she’s safe when she leaves, and Yeo-woong giggles that nobody’s ever wanted to protect her before. She notes that Young-gu seems not to be feeling well, but Bo-won assures her that Young-gu is unusually healthy.

Downstairs, Wang-joon warns Young-gu to be careful because people will recognize Da-da now, and they’ll gossip about her dating another man. Young-gu says that Wang-joon knew the press conference would put Da-da in this situation, and Wang-joon says he did it anyway because he loves her. He says he’s only letting Young-gu stay with Da-da in case a fan or a reporter tries to break into the house, so all Young-gu is allowed to do is protect Da-da and nothing more.

Once they’re alone again, Young-gu finds Da-da toasting her father’s photo with a shot of soju. He asks where dead people go, and Da-da says they don’t go anywhere — they stay in people’s memories, in texts they can’t bear to delete, and in photos they cherish. She says her father remains in music and dances they shared, choking up a little.

Young-gu takes her hand and asks her to show him the dance she danced with her father. As the old record player plays “Unforgettable,” Da-da teaches Young-gu to dance. He says that everything they do together is a first for him, and that she taught him all of it, and Da-da promises to teach him a lot more things in the future.

The next day, Yoo-jin shows a very eager Bo-won how to use the beauty products Kyu-ri uses. Yoo-jin asks how Young-gu gets his skin so luminous, joking that he’s almost perfect, like a robot, and gets smacked for using the forbidden word.

Yeo-woong asks Bo-won if he wants to have lunch with her, but he says he’s planning on having plans. When Kyu-ri walks in, Bo-won asks her to lunch right in front of Yeo-woong… so mean! Kyu-ri just tells him to go wash his face, because he’s used so much skin lotion that he looks greasy, hee.

Yeo-woong orders Bo-won to eat with her instead, trotting out the famous line from I’m Sorry, I Love You: “Do you want to eat with me, or kiss me?” She keeps up the questions until she gets to “Do you want to kiss me or marry me?” and Bo-won nervously agrees to eat with her.

The PD is in a great mood today, because thanks to Wang-joon’s public confession, interest in their drama has skyrocketed. Wang-joon tries to invite himself to go with Da-da to her father’s burial place after work, but she says she’ll go alone. Wang-joon remembers Da-da telling him once that her father had a hard time after her mother died young, and that she said they should grow old together.

He says he still wants that with her, and that it’s something she’ll never be able to do with Young-gu, who will never age. He asks what people will say, and what Young-gu will think, when she’s seventy and he still looks in his twenties.

In the wake of having Zero-Ten confiscated, then Wang-joon’s press conference, In-hyuk tells Diana that the only way for her to get Young-gu back from Da-da is to reveal that he’s a robot. But Diana says that she doesn’t want him back — she wants him to be miserably destroyed in front of both her and Da-da.

Young-gu is still working as a stuntman, and Kyu-ri asks if he’s uncomfortable around Wang-joon. He says that Da-da is his girlfriend, so what’s between him and Wang-joon doesn’t matter. Kyu-ri says that she watched Da-da for seven years, and although she didn’t know who her boyfriend was, she obviously loved him very much.

Yoo-jin yelps something about being tactless, and Young-gu feels something grinding in his chest again. It stops, so he stands to head to the set… but he suddenly goes still and slumps back down onto the couch. Kyu-ri and Yoo-jin think he’s playing a prank, but when Da-da walks in and sees Young-gu, she knows that something has gone terribly wrong.

 
COMMENTS

As much as I love this story and was rooting for the girl and the robot to be together forever in the Taiwanese version, I don’t think I’ve ever considered Da-da and Young-gu as valid endgame OTP material. In other robot romances where I’ve shipped the girl with the robot, the girl wasn’t bogged down with baggage from an inconsiderate ex, and the robots they knew were fully realized personalities who just happened to fall for the girl (I’d argue this even for the Taiwanese Absolute Boyfriend because Nai Te wasn’t a lovebot, he was a sexbot, and he developed genuine feelings for Xiao Fei that he wasn’t programmed for). Young-gu is adorable and sweet, but at the end of the day he’s programmed to love Da-da, and this change in the story undermines his development of genuine feelings because he was always meant to think he loves her. And the way Da-da’s character is set up, including her backstory with Wang-joon, what she needs isn’t a robot but a real person who values and respects her, and is proud to be with her. I believe that the majority of her “feelings” for Young-gu stem from the fact that he gives her the appearance of what Wang-joon never could/would because of his career, but I don’t think that she’ll be contented with Young-gu’s type of love forever.

Ideally, Wang-joon would be learning from everything that’s happening, and treating Da-da better, but unfortunately he’s just getting more possessive and controlling. As I said in the last recap, Wang-joon has been walking a fine line with me for a while, and I’d hoped that being rescued by Young-gu would at least open his mind to giving Young-gu a chance. He’s judging Young-gu without knowing anything about him on an individual basis, or taking the time to find out why Da-da says that Young-gu is different. Now yes, in a real world I would totally understand Wang-joon’s concerns — robots are not people and can’t be judged or predicted based on human values. But this is a fantasy story, and in that context, I wish he would at least give Young-gu a chance to change his mind. And he’s learned nothing from losing Da-da… he still doesn’t listen to her or respect her wishes or opinions, because if he did, he would slow his roll and stop thinking that it’s his job to “save” her from a threat he’s (so far) created in his own mind.

Young-gu has never done anything to endanger another person, not even when he was temporarily “Ken.” Wang-joon’s fears are based on nothing, and unfortunately he’s gotten even more ramped up by the close call with Zero-Ten, who was a completely different entity under completely different circumstances. And Wang-joon doesn’t get a pass for revealing his relationship with Da-da at the press conference instead of outing Young-gu as a robot, either, because again, he did it without talking to Da-da first or asking how she feels about it (and he knows it was wrong because he apologized before even doing it). Saying he did it because he loves her doesn’t fly with me, because it’s not romantic to tell the world her name when Da-da was actually shaking her head “No!” Then he just blatantly emotionally manipulated her by using her parents’ deaths to try to guilt her into taking him back. He’s gone from “neglectful but harmless” to “actively manipulative and disrespectful,” and I’m pretty much done with him.

It’s just infuriating, because this is another show (~side-eyes Abyss so hard~) that had everything it needed to be a hit, including great casting and a twice-proven, internationally beloved storyline. I even liked the changes made to the original plot, like having Wang-joon be Da-da’s ex-boyfriend instead of a childhood friend, because the potential for exploration of imperfect human love versus perfect but programmed robot love was enormous. Instead, the show is just shooting itself in the foot by not even addressing the interesting philosophical conundrums and making its main characters unrelatable (Young-gu), stagnant and borderline annoying (Da-da), or downright unlikable (Wang-joon). How I wish we were seeing a show that dug deeper into the causes and implications of a robot developing real emotions, and gave us a heroine with even a little character development as she tried to figure out which kind of love is right for her. Instead we have Da-da taking stands with no explanation beyond “he’s just different,” Wang-joon doubling and tripling down on being a boundary-stomping jerk, and Young-gu just… doing nothing. It’s just disappointing to see the story ruined this way, when it could have been so good.

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I give Wang joon a pass on outing Da da because with that out in the open it puts an end to shenanigans related to their hidden relationship.

I think that Zero Ten was an underutilized plot device. There was some unrealized potential to be had there. I mean once Da da kissed him theoretically he becomes her love bot. I was actually excited to see what they were going to do with that, but what did they do...nothing! These writers are completely aggravating.

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Don't worry, the writing gets even more ludicrous.

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Zero Ten could have been hilarious. The scene where both called her girlfriend had me in stitches and this kind of moments are rare.

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I agree, @outofthisworld. That scene of Da-da and her reverse harem was a hoot.

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I soooooo wanted more reverse harem. Pout!

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Outing her puts her in danger of the very real and vicious harassment of netizens and the media. He's very much so aware of the position that his announcement puts her in. Being a controlling and manipulative dick should never garner a pass.

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Kudos, @lollypip, for hanging in there and writing these reviews!

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I AM SLIGHTLY PUT OUT

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As you should be. You rightly stated that this show had a lot of potential, and it did. I blame the writers for missing a lot of possibilities and generally being ham fisted throughout this show. I am still watching, but mostly out of morbid curiosity.

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Thank you @lollypip for faithfully recapping while being put out. I find myself hard put to continue watching, so I trust you do not feel put upon to know that reading your recap instead of having to watch every minute of the show <puts a smile on my face.

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@Lollipip thank u for recapping this, U are one of my favorite recappers on DB ,May God strengthen u and Bless u.

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the potential for exploration of imperfect human love versus perfect but programmed robot love was enormous.

@lollypip, I agree with this so much! The opening 20 episodes seemed to be setting that up and it was so fascinating. Add to this that Zero Nine's behaviour was a game of 'Hot or Hilarious' and I was really gripped.

When Zero Nine kissed Diana and became her boyfriend for a bit, I thought that Da-da was getting kimchi-slapped with reality and therefore the limits of the robo love, and had to think about what she really wanted out of a relationship.

But no.

Instead, the drama stuffed all that potential in a bin bag and put it out with the trash.

@lollypip Fighting! At least as a viewer I could decide to just drop the drama like a hot potato...

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We all really need to play more 'Hot or Hilarious'! 😂

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I should have given you credit for that on-point comment! Sorry...

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Hm? Was that one originally mine??

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Ah no you called it 'sexy, or hilarious' and I enhanced it with some alliteration lol

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Aha, that definitely catchier 😆

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I actually thought you'd called it Hot or Hilarious, until I looked up the thread to link it here...

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I couldn't possibly have been that witty 😂

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Young-gu finally catches up to them, and when he also calls Da-da “Girlfriend,” Da-da finds herself in a very weird love triangle (square?). Zero-Ten is staring at her accusingly, Wang-joon is just horrified, and Young-gu looks like he might cry. LOL.

This was what I signed up for! I started this show expecting it to be more com than rom. You can't just dump a saccharin sweet romance with a robot on the viewer and expect us to buy it just like any other romantic drama. Give us the shenanigans of robot love, dig at the bizarre nature of it and then slowly reel us in with the sweet.

I love Hong Jong Hyun's Zero Ten so much that I wished he's the robot in this show and Yeo Jin Goo the human boyfriend. I know that common sense tells you to cast an actor whose demeanor and appearance are closer to the character but sometimes the opposite works wonders and is lot more fun. YJG is seen as the cutest and sweet guy in dramaland so it would be unexpected and more interesting if he plays a cold and egoistic boyfriend. Hong Jong Hyun doesn't come across as cute or innocent the way Yeo Jin Goo is but his deadpan face is excellent. He's actually pretty good and funny at playing stiff, awkward dudes. I can imagine him as a high end AI, sprouting super geek stuff and yet utterly clueless as a robot who doesn't understand humans yet.

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Without Zero Ten, I could have accepted YG being super advanced AI that can mimic humans flawlessly (even though he did act robotic for Diana), but his contrast just make YG (and Jingoo) look bad. I blame the director for giving bad or no directions to maintain continuity.

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I can accept Young Gu being super advanced but we are watching a show here and not real life(although we have not reached that level in super human like robots).

In a show, the actor who plays the robot must be able to differentiate the character from a human being otherwise I think it's pointless.

In fact, it kind of ruined my enjoyment and confused me because I didn't feel that Young Gu's progressed or 'develop' emotions for Da Da over time. He has been in love with her from start and grappled with a whole gamut of emotions like dejection, jealousy, sadness, fear, worry etc for as long as I remember.

I wondered if it's because HJH is older and thus able to interpret the role better. But it should not be left to the actor, the PD is ultimately responsible for the direction. It could also be that Jin Goo is considered to be a 'veteran' since he's been acting since he was a child. No one is going to tell him how he should act.

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Actually I think the opposite. Since Jingoo has been acting under strict direction as a child actor, he seems to rely on their guidance more than other veterans. He apparently needs a good director to shine because he doesn’t have enough life experiences to draw from.

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I hope he meets better directors in the future. There are a few popular k actors who suck at acting and I suspect it's partly because they never get honest feedback. YJG is a good actor but there are areas he needs to work on and a good director who can bring him to the next level.

I get the impression that his works as a child got him such accolades and popularity that it's unthinkable to criticize his acting. Apart from those suspicious unregistered users who had been dissing him recently, I'm in the minority who 'dares' give a negative opinion on Jingoo's performance. I will call a spade a spade. Actually, I gave raving reviews on Jingoo in Circle and I thought he did well as the mad king in Crowned Clown. Nothing wrong with not being perfect in every role, I just hope he can improve.

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Since I'm on this topic, I just saw the 5 minute trailer of Hotel Del Luna. Yeo Jin Goo is so much better in it!

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I think @outofthisworld is onto something here. I think YJG's youth and lack of experience make him unprepared for being a romantic lead. I am sorry to say this but as an unbiased viewer he utterly sucked in this drama. He was not believable as a robot for a second with Da Da and he is not convincing as a man (or a robot for that matter) in love. So yes, his lack of experience with real or imaginary (drama) love combined with bad directing resulted in this failure.

I do think the idea of Wang Joon playing the robot is brilliant because watching him as Zero 10 and Wang Joon shows me that he could convincingly portray that transition from the robotic programmed love to real feelings with the smallest of nuances on his face.

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Thank you for your recap and comments, @lollypip! Manseh for your dedication to sticking with this drama, which rubs me the wrong way in much the same manner it frustrates you. I haven't seen any of the other versions, but now I may take a gander at the Taiwanese one. After I get through the NOKDU FLOWER finale this weekend. *braces self*

I’ve been concerned for Young-goo as the frequency and severity of his “spells” has increased. He’s pretty much the only character I’m invested in by now. I cannot believe how many episodes are left to go even with the cut of two hours, and wish Show would get its butt in gear. I feel as if I’m watching the SIX MILLION DOLLAR MAN, except that his slow-motion trot really is glacial, and not indicative of time dilation because he’s approaching the speed of light. ;-)

Diana Of The Mechanical Hand continues to be a waste of WD40 and oxygen. She’s as relentless in her persecution of “Ken” and Da-da as Ma Wang-joon (or is it Mawang – devil – Joon?!) is with his meddlesome pestering of Da-da. I don’t think she’s an actual character so much as a partially-cyborg plot device of the “poor little rich girl” variety.

Da-da’s sad-sack vibe is depressing me out of my gourd. She comes across to me as such a wet blanket of a doormat that I'm slowly losing the will to live, and I’m not alone. I have a theory about Young-gu: He's kind of like a pet cat or dog who is attuned to its human's emotions. Da-da’s emotions are a mess of ambivalence and inadequacy, and it's grinding his gears. It's sure doing a number on mine. I used to feel sympathetic towards her, but I'm running out of patience. I'd like to shake her and tell her to get her head out of her butt and into therapy. At times I've disliked her intensely because she has been as callous towards Young-gu and his need for reciprocation of affection as Wang-joon has been towards hers. He may have been programmed to love/think he loves, but Young-gu has developed the need to be loved in return on his own. That's a pretty human attribute, actually – one to which she's been unwilling, if not unable, to respond.

Kyu-ri has also gotten on my nerves with her "loyal" badmouthing of Young-gu to Da-da. She can be so cruelly tone-deaf I could scream. Until reading your recap, it hadn't really sunk in to me how seriously he is affected by nasty comments. It's actually rather brilliant – because it underscores how it hurts people, too.

Mawang Rin (har! to fans of THE DEVIL and THE KING LOVES) really ruffled my tailfeathers in this episode. What an obnoxious announcement. Way to totally infringe your ex's privacy, bucko – especially after she stood on her head for seven years to protect your danged career. Sheesh.

I enjoyed Hong Jong-hyun’s turn as Zero-Ten. He did a good job as the bot. The look on Mawang Rin’s face when he met his android self. – How do you spell copyright infringement?!

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Da Da reminds me of the little match girl. Without someone to save her (she mistakes it for love) she's going to die.

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Da Da has repeatedly pushed away anyone who disapproves of her love with Young Gu. I'd go so far to say she's willing to die for it.

I wish the show had shown how Young Gu filled the gap in Da Da's life when she felt broken, consoled her and gave her companionship. However, they should have progressed to show the challenges and limitations of a robot as anything more. It could have then moved from comedy to something more meaningful in an organic way.

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I was just thinking about Wang Joon and how he's been "mean" to the robot...but how is it possible to be mean to an mechanical machine? When we don't like Wang Joon being mean it's because we're thinking of Yeo Jin goo, not robot 9, right? Your statement "limitations of a robot" brought that to mind. As I think you've said before, the actor has never acted like a robot, and I don't know if it's the limitations of the actor or if it's the directing.

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I don't find Wang Joon mean to Young Gu at all. In fact, he's probably treating him better than he should because he knows what Young Gu means to Da Da. However, there are times when his emotions get the better of him or the sure absurdity of the situation hits him.

About the acting, I speculate that the director simply told YJG that Zero Nine is a highly advanced robot who's very human and gave him free reign. YJG then acted like he always did. For all our criticisms, we must remember that YJG's strength is his ability to emote. Great asset in most roles but not this one. In fact, restraint should be key. YJG was so expressive as Zero Nine that I was going like "How is that even remotely a robot?"

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@outofthisworld I was kind of repeating what I've heard other fans say as far as them thinking Wang Joon is mean to the robot. I always found that Wang Joon would come across as caring but then the last sentence he'd say would seem mean. That seems to happen every time he's on screen - of course I might be mis-remembering or reading more into it.

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I don’t think WJ has been mean to YG. It’s more because Jingoo always having a wounded puppy look in his eyes and contrastingly HJH (sorry to say) looks naturally gangster. If anything, I agree with @outofthisworld that WJ has been treating him better than he wants to for DaDa’s sake. His last words to YG always seems harsher than the overall conversation because Mister “I’m a Hallyu star” needs to have the upper hand😅. Also he often leaves on a threat note (always like, I’ll be back to save her from you).

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@geliguolu

Haha, Gangster vs Hurt Puppy! I'm tickled. Obviously, my scenario of swapping the actors' roles won't work.

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I think swapping the roles would be genius! The robot who actually doesn't suck but looks gansta vs. the annoying puppy who follows her around...the "nice guy." Like that Taiwanese show "Perfect Match."

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What a great, fun post @pakalanapikake.

Can't stop giggling at your "Diana Of The Mechanical Hand continues to be a waste of WD40 and oxygen." I had briefly had hopes in Diana being the more developed big bad. Robotic-hand-ed, doll-obsessed female jerk with backstory, against full on robot would have been interesting. Pity.

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Thanks, @growingbeautifully. ;-)

Sudden epiphany: If Diana named her toy "Ken," does that make her "Barbie"? Or "Skipper"?!

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I'd just call her "Barbed" as in barbed wire! Heh!

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This episode sealed it for me. I’m team human no matter what.

All the talks about Da Da falling in love because Yeong Goo is Yeong Goo (they keep trying to justify this in later episodes) feels like the writer is purposely tone deaf. Obviously the robots are not loving her for being her. I expected Da Da to reflect on this reality and start questioning the love she’s receiving from programming, but no~~~, they packed up zero ten and moved on.🤦🏻‍♀️

I dove into this drama expecting to hate the exboyfriend but Wang Joon turns out to be the only functioning human brain. He is flawed but in the most human way. He’s relatable not from an ex- pov, rather his thoughts develop like human. If a robot tried to kill me, he’ll yea I’ll be anti-robot. Does he know Yeong Goo well enough to judge him harmful? No, and that’s why he fears for Da Da. And let’s not brush off the fact he absolutely put Da Da’s life before his own. When being strangled by Zero Ten he struggles to utter “run” rather than using his strength to break loose. Also, when he got the chance to call for help, he didn’t call noona manager because he feared for her safety. So far, Ma Wang Joon has been consistently looking out for the safety of people he loves, even if he does it sometimes in a frankly asshole way. He’s witnessed Yeong Goo’s strength on several occasions and still he ran to save Da Da knowing he’s mere flesh and blood that is no match to a robot. That makes him very endearing, to me at least.

I see his press conference as a way to break off his rusty chains of being celebrity. He’s pretty sure Da Da won’t like it and that’s why he apologized ahead of time. Since he knows she won’t like it, to say that it was a move to win her back is invalid. I think he opened up for 3 reasons: 1) It’s obvious he’s gotten fed up with the celebrity life that costed him a long term relationship, 2) this secret relationship is a leverage that his ex-CEO and possibly other can use against him, and 3) exposing Da Da to paparazzi eyes will make her safer.

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Wow! I never thought of 3)! but I wonder if the writer is actually capable of writing this or did we give him more credit than he deserves?

You are right abut Wang Joon being the only functioning human brain. I never thought he deserves all the hate. Why should he accept and much less trust Young Gu just because Da Da loves the robot? And as you rightly pointed out, he has never been selfish when it counts most. For all his swag and big ego "I'm Ma Wang Joon", his intentions are always good even if his words don't come out right.

I am on Team Da Da and Young Gu. At this moment, they are well matched - sweet, nice, cute and incredibly bland. Da Da is way over Wang Joon, I think her love for him had been dying just as he was also grappling with doubts about his. That's fine because he was at fault and she doesn't owe him anything.

The way the show presents us Da Da and her relationship with Young Gu - I think she has lost her mind.

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I'm not Team Da Da and Wang Joon. I'm merely Team Wang Joon.

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Thank you @geliguolu. I was just thinking the only character that is acting like a real person in the show is Wang Joon! I might not condone all his actions, but despite his faults at least his actions are relatable and understandable. I won't even get into the robot's motivations anymore but Da Da's actions and reactions are frustrating me excessively recently.

It makes perfect sense for a human who did not grow up seeing humanlike robots all around to be wary and cautious, especially when the life and happiness of someone he loves is on the line. Any other reaction (such as Da Da's reactions) doesn't make sense. Wang Joon has absolutely no reason to trust Young Gu, give him the benefit of the doubt or give him a chance. Even Da Da has no reason besides her really unexplained, illogical and suddenly developed feelings.

As I said before at this point I dislike Da Da and I don't really want Wang Joon with her anymore. She might not have deserved to be hidden for 7 years, labelled a stalker in front of the media and outed as the love of Wang Joon's life (if I remember correctly he didn't say anything about their dating history) but Wang Joon also doesn't deserve to be a consolation prize for Da Da if she can't be with Young Gu.

They both made mistakes in that relationship. Da Da did not object to their hidden relationship for 7 years, then all of a sudden left Wang Joon cold turkey when another man appeared in her life. It's to his credit that Wang Joon didn't think she cheated on him before they broke up. In his place I would have. So I think he had legitimate reasons in the beginning to think that there is still hope for them yet. At this point though, Da Da is lost to all reason.

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Lol, 3 was kind of my take but MJ did mention reporters are watching Da Da to YG and YG should keep a distant. So he in effect set up several parties to keep Da Da safe from Diana, YG, and reporters while knowing he can’t stay at her side 24/7.

I’m team human but not really team EDD-MWJ. She apparently moved on from him so falling back to him is unlikely and unfair. I think WJ just wants her to have a healthy (human) relationship for her sake, and I feel the same. She should find another guy or stay single.

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I understand Wang Joon when at times, he seems to want to let go of Da Da totally and at others, he can't help but interfere. If he totally gets out of Da Da's life just because he 'respects' her, I'd say he is no friend of hers. The show is the one who introduced the danger of robots who can harm simply because they are instructed to or instantly switches sides when kissed. Yet they oversimplify it by asking us to trust Young Gu just because he....eh..."loves" Da Da? Humans can't even be trusted 100%, let alone a machine.

I also get that WJ knows he should move on and for Da Da to find someone who truly loves her but I can't fault him for hoping against hope since he clearly still loves and cares for her. If he has no qualms about her loving a robot, I'd say either he has lost his mind too or she's worse than a nobody in his eyes.

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The way I see it, if your exlover watches you walk into a dark stormy sea without floatation device and sits back on the sand saying “s/he’s free to do whatever s/he wants”, they were never in love, ever.

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Imagine flipping the actors. YJG will be the misunderstood boyfriend hero trying to save DaDa from an annoyingly clingy and potentially dangerous robot.😅

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@geliguolu

I would expect a lot of hard core fans to support the human to get the girl back no matter how much of a jerk he was.

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Thank you. I'm glad someone else roots for the human being. The way this show is written made me think it was a satire on previous versions' glorifying of the concept of being in love with a robot and that Da Da and even Young Gu would eventually recognize how ridiculous it was. Now I'm not so sure.

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Thank you from the few of us who are pro Wang Joon!

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I can't imagine (or believe) that anyone whose had to deal with the paparazzi stalking their every movement could legitimately believe that adding them to someone's life makes them safer.

What's the paparazzi going to do if Young-gu flipped, but take pictures? It's just a way to control Da Da's life and force her to continue to hide in the shadows. It's a dick move.

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I think it depends on what is making the person unsafe. Frankly, I do think that was meant to be his intention. However, I also think it demonstrates his need to strip her of her autonomy, which , again, for me is the only real problematic element to his character. So, yeah, it was a dick move, but he makes a lot of dick moves with good intentions (not saying that makes it right, but I get him more than most of the other characters).

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My ONLY beef with him (aside from his apparently extra-terrestrial-sized ego) is the fact that he doesn't seem to want to grant DD her autonomy. But since she's so stupid with it, I kstill understand him, even if I don't think it's okay.

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@lollypip, thank you for watching for us and writing the recaps! At this point, I'm not sure that even with FF I'll be able to finish this.

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You know a show is bad when the only positive thing you can say about it is how much you love what they did with the female lead's hair. It's not even fun bad either, though I can see Hong Jong-Hyeon working his heart out to try to make Ma Wang-Joon into...something. I feel bad for the actors. They deserved better writing, all of them.

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Ohh...the hair! Ok that made me mad too but I'll save my rant for later if I remember to post it.

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I am literally fast forwarding through every part of this drama that doesn't have Hong Jong-hyun in it. Even as a jerk, Ma Wang Joon is the only compelling character left. And he is a LEGIT jerk, apparently, no disrespect meant to the actor, who did literally EVERYTHING he could to rescue his character from that fate...he was fighting the writer all the way. The writer who I now call "Darth Schriftsteller" in my mind, because I will actively avoid his/her dramas from this point on.

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@mehgann,
ROFLMAO at you "Darth Schriftsteller." Best laugh I've had all day. ;-)

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OMG, I thought I was the only one ff to all the HJH scenes! Ha! Thank you, comrade!
Off to see what else the writer has written...

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It's so weird. I honestly love him. I don't know what planet he fell from...he's stiff, expressionless, and (I'm sorry) not my type in terms of looks, but there's just something about him! I've said it like a million times on here, but it's a mystery to me, and I want someone to explain it!

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He looks stiff but not expressionless although he does a straight face absolutely well.

He does look like an alien from certain angles. Have you seen Vampire Idol? It's a really old show.

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No, I don't do vampire stuff generally. I don't think he looks like an alien, I just mean that he is so unique! Actors like him generally don't catch my attention. But I like his stillness. I also think he IS somewhat expressionless until you really pay attention. He does a bunch of tiny movements and other things that are hard to catch, but very effective. He doesn't get any credit, either.

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Vampire Idol is not that kind of vampire show. It's silliness to the max. Anyway, about his stillness, I think I kind of understand what you mean.

Over the years, I develop a huge allergy to overacting so less is always more for me. Hong Jong Hyun is underrated. I think we can easily count the number of people here who even notices him.

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Okay, I'll check it out, then! I'm into silly.

I once read a book where there was a man with a "military" background who never made movements that were unnecessary...he was deliberate in everything he did. And I see HJH this way. Especially in The King Loves...he was like a deep rooted tree in a hurricane in that show. I couldn't understand anyone who didn't get Yoona's character's attachment to him. Especially since her life was so tumultuous. But now that I am noticing him in other things, I am realizing that he's kind of always that way. It's an attractive quality...far more than looks.

I also don't like overacting unless it makes sense in the story (like the characters in Hwayugi, for example, where it TOTALLY worked and was one of the most delightful things about the show).

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@mehgann

What a beautiful description of Wang Rin! He's the most swoonworthy guy I've seen.

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It warms my heart to hear from more HJH fans! I dearly loved him in King Loves - the part was written specifically for his personality. He's just a shy, kind and gentle person.
Here's another HJH/KingLoves fan. She blogs it all:
https://breathlesssurvival.wordpress.com/2018/07/17/rinsan-one-year-on/

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@mehgann On the re-watch of King in Love I thought she was attracted to Wang Rin from the first moment they met. He was more swoonworthy, handsome and she didn't know they were royalty

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So, she MIGHT just love them more than I do. Lol!!!! But it was a good match.

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@linda-palapala,
Another HJH fan reporting for duty. Thanks for that link. I totally enjoyed a little stroll down memory lane with THE KING LOVES. I can't believe it's been nearly 2 years to the day since the drama premiered. Tempus fugit.

@mehgann, @outofthisworld,
I agree with you about the quality of grounded stillness that JHJ emanates. His eye acting is excellent, and those subtle microexpressions, especially when he does a double take, are great. As for restrained gestures, he reminds me of a favorite drummer who played with great economy of motion. No flailing wildly, no wasted energy, just a laser-focused, less-is-more approach that enhanced every piece he played. Percussion histrionics are par for the course in rock, so it was refreshing to watch someone who channeled his energy with such finesse.

By any chance have you seen one of his earlier movies called ONE STEP MORE TO THE SEA? Queen YooShouldn't'veHadKids is in it, along with Han Ye-ri. My main reason for watching was Kim Young-jae, another excellent actor who is often very understated. I first saw him in THE KING'S DAUGHTER, SOO BAEK HYANG, in which he played a rival monarch. He was so good I started watching his older productions.
http://asianwiki.com/One_Step_More_to_the_Sea

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@linda-palapala,
I meant to add that I enjoyed Hong Jong-hyun's turn as Wang Yo in MOON LOVERS. He played such a sneaky, scurrilous villain. But then, when he realized Queen Mom didn't really give a rat's petoot about him, I came to see him as her victim, like Wang So. Sure, he was bad news. Considering that King Dad was getting his jollies by pitting all his kids against each other, I don't think he had any other choice if he wanted to survive. Plus it gave him carte blanche with the Guyliner of Evil. Which he rocked to perfection. ;-)

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As much as I dislike this show, I've seen worse writers.

I also think that Ma Wang Joon is the only character the writer put effort into. He did the worst job on the main characters - Da Da and Young Gu. They were wafer thin, dull and annoying when we should be rooting for them despite reservations and logic about robot love.

Wang Joon has become the only voice of reason and doubts when he examined the ridiculousness of the situation, valid fears about rogue robot or malfunction. I won't say he had anything deeply insightful but everyone else's reactions were just simple extremes. But at the same time, he still has to play the part of the ex-boyfriend who had hurt our female lead so he would act like the egoistic jerk whenever the script called for it.

Da Da and Young Gu became relegated to characters who merely react. They are so in love but we don't even understand why. As far as I can see, Young Gu is programmed to love and die loyal as long as he doesn't get kissed by another. The drama wants us to believe his love is real because Young Gu is turning into a real human. I wonder which is more ridiculous. Da Da disappoints too. Ever since Young Gu was kidnapped by Diana and Da Da got him back, it's like her brains got snatched in the process. Maybe the romantics will see her as becoming more and more like Young Gu. She's almost robotic and can only declare undying love for Young Gu.

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Brilliant, @outofthisworld!

Maybe Da-da isn't turning into a robot. I think she may already be one. Let's set her up on a blind date with Marvin the Paranoid Android from Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. It would be a natural lead in to the sequel, HELL IS OTHER ROBOTS.

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Lol, I could imagine DaDa and Marvin sigh in unison, then look up at each other with glistening blinky eyes😂

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HAHAHA!!! OMG, I love this so much. If only Alan Rickman was still with us...

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Oh, BELIEVE me, I've seen worse, too. There have been some dramas with no HJH/MWJ to save them. But this is frustrating because it could have been good, but isn't.

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What does it say for this drama and the romance that I prefer Young Gu and Wang Joon's scenes to the supposed OTP's?

I also finding it astonishing that a company making robots which is so secretive does not instill any principles into their robots that they should not harm humans. Who will be liable if Zero Nine or Ten kill a human because they were ordered to (Zero Ten) or to protect Da Da (Zero Nine)?

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Oh and what was the purpose of Zero 10? Add to the episode count? How did he advance the story?

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Storywise, the appearance of Zero 10 and how easily it could be used for nefarious purposes. It was to show that robots can be dangerous. However, no one saw that except Wang Joon and he got immediately knocked down as being a douche bag.

For me, Zero 10 is the highlight of the drama. Hong Jong Hyun was so good in this short appearance as a robot that I wondered at the possibilities.

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Oh, HJH definitely showed how Young Gu should have acted like a robot in the beginning but I was so let down by Zero Ten disappearing as fast as he appeared that I had to question the writer's intended purpose, because clearly the writer's intent is not for us to side with Wang Joon so I don't know whether the message intended was robots can be dangerous. If anything this anti Wang Joon writer intended it to show Wang Joon is evil whether robot or human. 🤣

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I wonder if Zero Ten was part of the original. That’s the only reason for him to exist.

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Purpose of Zero 10 - obviously the writer has never heard of Chekhov's gun.

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Writer maybe never read Isaac Asimov's robots and the 3 laws of robotics. That should be the foundation before robots move freely amongst humans.

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How have I missed this entire series of conversation until now? I posted about Asimov before I read your comment.

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Eh...this is a company who can't even get the basics of the design right. You will see more of it in the coming episodes, some of which are hilariously awful.

Sometimes I wonder what on earth were they thinking when they produce a drama like this? Did they not think about these basic rules when they were at the drawing board or did they assume the audience is plain stupid. Being in fantasy genre does not mean anything goes.

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Especially when there are so many sci-fi novels (@growingbeautifully), movies etc. around and ethical debates regarding AI is in our everyday lives this shallow treatment really is inexcusable.

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Eum Da Da is so boring that I didn’t even bother discussing her in my comments earlier.

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What? Have you taken Isaac Asimov's robot series literally?

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I've come to realise that my fave scenes were YG with Wang Joon. Even their earlier ones where WJ was childishly trying to make YG's life hard. I loved that YG came to rescue him and I really wanted them to get back together, with WJ trusting YG as a 'friend'. But writer totally pulled that rug out from under their feet. I'm so disgruntled.

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Everything good about this show, the writer managed to ruin. Frankly, that's talent, albeit the wrong kind of talent. Lol!

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