Oh My Ghostess: Episode 10
Love is in the air, but along with all of the giddy highs of romance comes a new set of complications for our lovebirds—namely that there are technically three birds in this nest. When your love triangle involves the dead, it raises some interesting questions and crosses a lot of wires, even when all of your messages are happy fluttering hearts and swoony looks.
SONG OF THE DAY
HuRim – “설렘주의보” (Watch Out for Feelings) [ Download ]
EPISODE 10 RECAP
Sun-woo and Soon-ae walk home hand-in-hand, just soaking in giddiness. He says that even with the most delicious food, if you eat it too fast, you’ll get indigestion. He doesn’t want them to get indigestion of the heart by going too fast.
Soon-ae asks a little wistfully, “What if there isn’t much time?” and he scoffs that it’s not like she’s going to die tomorrow. She’s so happy to just sit there holding his hand that she insists on one minute longer.
Mom arrives with pastries for Sun-woo, and they jump up in alarm, barely managing to unlock their hands before she comes up to the roof. Mom wonders what Bong-sun is doing here so late, and Sun-woo awkwardly invents an errand she was here for and sends her home.
Mom catches on right away and comments on Bong-sun’s level and size, and warns Sun-woo not to even try foot-acting in front of her. She knows they’re dating and calls him out on it, but he shoves a pastry in his mouth and ignores her.
This is Mom, without pause: “Why are you changing the subject? Hey, what’s with the dog? Wait, you’re using condoms, right?” He chokes on his food, and she sits down to repeat sincerely, “Son, you have to use condoms.” I’m pretty sure Jo Jung-seok cracks up in earnest right there.
Soon-ae runs down the street to get out of there, and then wonders why her heart is still racing—is it because of Mom, or the handholding? She presses her face against her palm and swoons, which answers that.
Sun-woo insists that there’s nothing going on with him and Bong-sun, and Mom says he can call it whatever he wants, just as long as he’s using condoms. He groans and asks if she really wants to be talking about this stuff with her son, but she says it’s better than him making babies by accident. Truth. Listen to your mother!
Mom finally leaves, and Sun-woo rushes to text Soon-ae that it’s safe to come back. She’s relieved to hear that it went okay, and pouts when he says they should head inside. She mentions getting enough sleep earlier at the motel, and he gets all fired up again at the mention of the motel, and bans the word altogether.
They’re adorable as he walks her home all of five steps to her door, and then they go back and forth insisting on walking the other one home, only for them it’s one step between their doors. He finally gets her to go to bed and chuckles at her cuteness.
Mom heads home and asks Eun-hee about Bong-sun’s character and whether she dates around, and Eun-hee wonders to herself why so many people are curious about Bong-sun lately.
In the middle of the night, Soon-ae sneaks out of Bong-sun’s room and into Sun-woo’s, to watch him sleep. She lies down next to him and is actually able to touch his face, and she sighs, “You’re a ghost—how can you like him for real? What are you going to do? You’re crazy.” Ruh-roh.
She tells herself that it’s okay because she’s just enjoying the feeling of being in a relationship, though she doesn’t sound convinced.
Bong-sun comes outside to get a glass of water and runs into Soon-ae as she’s coming out of Sun-woo’s room. Soon-ae quickly says she was just wandering about because she was bored, and feels awkward when Bong-sun sweetly calls her unni.
Bong-sun says that she doesn’t see other ghosts anymore and is getting good sleep for the first time, and that it’s all because of unni.
Sun-woo comes out because he hears Bong-sun talking, and Soon-ae watches as Sun-woo takes Bong-sun into his room to put a fan together for her.
Bong-sun quietly points out that he put the propeller on backwards and reaches out to wipe the sweat on his brow, and he gets the cutest little smile as he looks at her. Soon-ae hangs back, looking dejected as she watches them.
In the morning, Sun-woo is the one sending Soon-ae little signals in front of the others, as he winks at her to meet him in the locker room. He feeds her herbs to keep her healthy in the sweltering heat, and she presses his hand to her face, calling that her best medicine.
Joon interrupts them to tell Soon-ae about a phone call for her, and looks curiously over at Sun-woo, who’s doing a terrible job of acting natural. Soon-ae picks up the phone and doesn’t realize that it’s Sun-woo’s mom on the line, and when Mom asks for her birthdate, she accidentally answers with her own, not Bong-sun’s.
Not knowing this, Medium Unni reads the fortune at Mom’s request, and says that this girl is already dead. Mom says that can’t be and tells Unni about catching Sun-woo and Bong-sun together last night, and Unni realizes that she’s talking about Soon-ae. She gets hopeful to hear that they were together late at night, but deflates to hear that they were simply talking.
Mom asks about a different birthdate for someone that Sun-woo insists is just a friend, and Unni says this one has had loss but will be happy in her second love if she meets her soulmate.
At that, Mom immediately calls So-hyung out for coffee and shamelessly grills her about her taste in men. She determines that So-hyung sees Sun-woo as a man, and would date him if he made a move. She’s probably already planning their wedding in her head.
Officer Sung-jae drops Eun-hee off at the restaurant and waits to greet Sun-woo, and happens to hear Soon-ae humming a familiar tune. He remembers her singing the same song at Dad’s restaurant years ago, and the way she’d smile to greet him.
Bong-sun does the same now, and it makes him eerily fixated on her. It continues to bother him when he’s at work, as he remembers Dad’s shoelaces tied in Soon-ae’s special way, and he looks up Bong-sun’s information on the computer.
Sun-woo is suuuuper obvious about trying to justify to the guys why he’s taking Soon-ae to the market with him, and she giggles in the car that he was the one who told her to be less conspicuous. She asks if he can drive with one hand because she thinks it looks cool, and of course clasps his free hand the moment he offers it up.
They’re so lovey-dovey at the market that the fruit stand ajumma thinks they’re newlyweds, and Soon-ae enjoys playing along. The ajumma reads faces and says they’ll have a daughter, and that their sexual chemistry is off the charts, making them blush.
Soon-ae sees Dad nearby and introduces Sun-woo, and without asking, she insists on giving Dad a ride back to his restaurant. Sun-woo is a little confused, but politely goes along.
He looks a little taken aback by the empty, shabby restaurant, and Dad says it isn’t much, but it used to be busy when his daughter was here. Sun-woo asks after the daughter, and Dad says she died three years ago.
Soon-ae puts the groceries away for Dad and notices a hose, and Dad says he bought it to make cleaning a little easier, but hasn’t been able to connect it yet. Soon-ae looks up at Sun-woo expectantly, and soon he’s crouching in the kitchen. As we saw with the fan, he’s not all that handy, and they try not to laugh at how much he struggles with the simple task.
Dad is so grateful that he insists on feeding them, and Soon-ae starts to say that Sun-woo can’t eat rice, but he stops her, not wanting to be rude. Aw, he shovels rice and stuffs his face just to be nice, and Soon-ae smiles.
Little bro Kyung-mo comes home and is happy to see Bong-sun, though he’s snappish about her being here with the star chef. He grumbles that he would’ve connected the hose himself, and asks why they’re stuck to each other, earning a silent scowl from noona.
Sun-woo and Soon-ae are so late to return to work that Eun-hee asks what happened, and they blurt at the same time that there was an accident and the car broke down, and Sun-woo is all, “There was an accident? There was an accident! There was. And what happened? Then there was traffic. And then my car happened to break down just in time.” Eun-hee raises an eyebrow at their weirdness.
Sun-woo suffers through the dinner rush on an upset stomach and heads upstairs early. Soon-ae catches him in the hallway to massage his hands, and chides him for eating two bowls of rice. They break apart when Joon walks by and Sun-woo acts like he’s scolding her, and Joon just smiles to himself, clearly aware of what’s going on between them.
That night, Sung-jae opens up his drawer and takes out the cracked cell phone that was hidden away, and in flashback we see a man chasing a woman who looks a lot like Soon-ae down a dark street. She runs for her life, and then offscreen, a piercing scream rings out. Eep.
Sometime later (perhaps that same night?), Sung-jae washes up in a dingy apartment and ignores an incoming call on one of the two phones on his counter. He saunters over to the bathroom casually, where a woman’s body is lying on the ground. Shiiit. All we see is her feet, but they aren’t moving.
Back in the present, Sung-jae contemplates the phone and then takes out a suitcase that’s filled with scary serial kidnapping and/or murder gear and broken security cameras, and tosses the phone inside too. I can’t believe he keeps this stuff lying around his house.
Sun-woo squirms like a big baby when Soon-ae gets ready to prick his finger to relieve his indigestion, and she asks why he ate two whole bowls of rice. He says that it was the polite thing to do in front of an elder, and he felt bad for the ajusshi, who had such sad eyes when he talked about his daughter passing away.
Soon-ae is so touched that she just stares, and he guesses that she’s fallen for him again. He insists on going with her to the drugstore: “What if there are ghosts?” Soon-ae: “Oh, gho…sts…”
He’s feeling better by the walk back, so she requests more handholding. He’s only happy to oblige, and looks a little sad when she breaks contact to run over to a playground. He chases her around, and then makes a big fuss when she trips and falls.
He sits her down to check her foot and treats her so tenderly that she swoons all over again. He wonders why she’s staring, and she replies, “Because I like you. I like you so, so much.” There’s a long beat as they look at each other without saying a word, and then they sit on the swings together, holding hands.
Soon-ae thanks him for all the things she’s been able to do for the first time because of him, like holding hands with the person she likes, or playing in a playground like this, or going on a trip like their staff retreat. He asks what else she’s never done before, and she names things like going to the amusement park or Namsan Tower.
She says that she was too busy to do anything but work, and she thanks him so sincerely for all her new experiences that he darts up and declares that they’ll go on an overnight trip.
She asks why he changed his mind when he was so against her trying to jump him before, and he half-mumbles an admission: “I changed my mind. I want to go on a trip with you. I’m not going to hold back anymore, so you’ve been warned.” It’s her turn to be stunned silent.
Sun-woo looks up hotels in his room that night and wonders if it’s too presumptuous to make a reservation now. He’s so excited about it, hee.
Meanwhile, Soon-ae is in a very different mood on the other side of the wall, and leaves Bong-sun’s body to go visit Medium Unni in the middle of the night. She terrifies her awake, of course, being a ghost and all, and tells her about the trip with Sun-woo.
Unni thinks that’s good news, but wonders why Soon-ae looks so sad about it. Soon-ae doesn’t understand it either—tomorrow she could get what she’s been wanting all this time and finally resolve her grudge and move on…
Soon-ae: “But I’m not happy. Unni, I like Chef so much. The things he says to me, the way he looks at me, the way it feels when he holds my hand—they’re all things I’ve never felt before when I was alive. They’re so warm, and I feel like my heart is softening.”
Unni gasps, and Soon-ae quickly answers, “I know. I’m not Na Bong-sun. I’m just borrowing her body. But… but… it makes me so upset. Why didn’t I experience any of these things when I was alive, instead of when I’m dead?”
Unni cuts her off in a grave tone: “Get it together. Do you know what the most dangerous thing is to a ghost? It’s feelings. You think you’re a person and hurt and feel sad, and happy. And that’s where greed comes from—the greed to remain among the living, even as a malevolent ghost!”
She warns her that malevolent ghosts are not the same as her—they never disappear and wander forever, stuck amongst the worst of people, causing evil. Unni clasps Soon-ae’s hands and begs her to steel herself and resolve her grudge, and move on to a better place. Tears fall as Soon-ae nods, knowing that Unni is right about what she has to do. Unni comforts her and hugs her close, and Soon-ae cries into her shoulder.
Soon-ae is subdued at work the next day, even when Sun-woo whispers his plans to get them out of here as early as possible today. Min-soo chooses today of all days to insist on a staff night out, and Sun-woo has to say no so many times that he ends up snapping at him.
Soon-ae takes the morning to go see Dad, thinking that it’s her last day here as a ghost. She shows him how to do stuff more efficiently in the restaurant, and he picks up on the fact that she’s acting like they won’t see each other for a long time.
She tamps down her tears and says that she just might be busy for a while and can’t come as often, and he promises to do as she instructs. She thinks to herself that she might never see him again, and Dad should stop thinking about her and be healthy and happy with Kyung-mo now.
Sun-woo’s mom is surprised when Medium Unni springs for an expensive lunch, which is just her way of alleviating her guilt about Sun-woo. Mom makes sure that she isn’t moving away because she doesn’t want to lose her only girlfriend, and Unni admits to liking her too. Their friendship is so cute.
Unni says aloud in her vague way that she does feel bad because “it” is with a ghost, “But it’s not like doing it once will make it fall off,” and that they’ll think of it like giving a temple offering. LOL. Of course Mom has no idea that she’s talking about her son.
Sun-woo makes sure to close early and tells Soon-ae to pack and meet upstairs. He notes that she seems quiet, and when he guesses that she’s just so excited that she can’t express it, she goes with that.
But she looks sad when she’s alone, and has to pep-talk herself into packing and going on the trip. She knows she has to stick to her original plan and go, but she wars with herself for wanting to stay just a little longer.
Sun-woo gets delayed when Mom calls him drunk, and he asks Soon-ae to meet him at the train station. She sits on the rooftop thinking back to all the things she’s experienced with Sun-woo, from their first kiss to their first handhold, and decides to put one foot in front of the other.
Sung-jae watches as she leaves and then creeps up to the roof, where the dog barks at him aggressively. If he IS possessed and dogs can see ghosts, it would explain the encounter with the last dog (you’d better not hurt this one!!).
He roots around Bong-sun’s room and finds all of her ghost-warding paraphernalia, from scythe to strings of garlic, crosses, talismans, and ghost-warding beans. He throws them angrily, perhaps having connected all the dots between Soon-ae and Bong-sun.
Sun-woo arrives at the bar to pick Mom up, only to find her totally sober. It’s not even a surprise anymore that she lied about that, but then So-hyung arrives too, and Mom invents an excuse to leave them alone. Moooooooom.
So-hyung suggests a walk on their old college campus, and tells Sun-woo that she actually saw him first when they were in school, but he seemed so uninterested in her. She wonders if maybe they were so comfortable around each other and so used to each other that she didn’t know her own feelings.
He tries to cut her off, but she asks to speak first, knowing that she might not be able to get it out. But he cuts her off anyway since his news has to come first, and tells her that he has someone special in his life.
She can guess that it’s Bong-sun without having to be told, and gets embarrassed at the rejection, wondering how she’s going to face him from now on.
Sun-woo takes a moment to call Soon-ae because he’s late to meet her at the train station, but she doesn’t answer. She’s actually still sitting in the playground in their neighborhood, purposely ignoring the call because she thinks he’s at the station looking for her.
She stares down at her phone and apologizes for not going: “But today isn’t the day. I can’t go like this. I know it’s selfish, but just a little longer… a little longer.”
She comes back home and calls out to Sun-woo, ready for him to be mad at her, but then he arrives behind her and starts apologizing profusely for not showing up. He assumes that she left her phone behind and waited for him, and she doesn’t bother explaining that she didn’t go either.
He makes it up to her by cooking her a fancy steak dinner, and tells her that he’ll always cook whatever she wants to eat. She says that what she really wants is fried intestines, and he cringes, but agrees to do it if she’ll forgive him for tonight.
He promises to make her feel like they went on a trip anyway, and pitches a tent up on the roof. He tells her about being with So-hyung earlier, and that he told her that he was dating someone.
Soon-ae is surprised, and he admits that he’s been dragged around by those feelings for a really long time, and letting go feels like a relief. He turns to her and adds, “What I’m saying is, you have to take responsibility for me. You’re dead if you abandon me.” I love that reversal that he asks HER to take responsibility.
She reaches out to touch his face, and he brings her hand up to his lips to kiss her gently. He kisses her softly on the lips before leaning them down into the tent, where he lies down on top of her and starts to unbutton his shirt. He reaches down to unbutton hers, and she squeezes her eyes shut nervously.
Ack, this conflict is getting sticky with Soon-ae falling so head over heels for Sun-woo, though it makes sense that she would, not only because of the way he’s treating her, but because of everything she gets to experience for the first time with him. She died so young and her biggest regret is not doing everything she wanted to while she had the chance, so it seems true to character that her feelings are tied to now being able to enjoy life the way she’s always wanted to. The problem is that she’s starting to confuse borrowed time and borrowed body for her own when she’s already dead. And the more that she prolongs staying in Bong-sun’s body, the more it seems like she’s stealing someone else’s experiences to cling to life.
The danger of a ghost having feelings seems to capture all of that, because as Unni told her, the greed to stay among the living is what will turn her very nature into something malevolent. She’s already inching towards that dangerous line by knowingly prolonging her time here, even if she’s told herself that it’s just a little longer. I believe that her feelings are real, which makes one side of this love triangle really bittersweet, but there’s a definite conflict in now sharing a body with Bong-sun if she’s feeling jealous when she’s not possessing her. It’s enough to create a crisis of identity for her, because she has to keep reminding herself that she isn’t Bong-sun, and that this isn’t her life she’s living.
I do wish that the show would balance Bong-sun’s time with Sun-woo a little more, but I’m not as conflicted about his feelings because he sees Soon-ae and Bong-sun as one person. The fact that he misses her blog updates or looks at her the same way whether she’s possessed or not is enough to tell me that he’s not only in love with her when she’s Soon-ae. I just regret that Bong-sun isn’t there for the grand confessions, because I don’t want it to feel like she missed out on her own relationship.
Soon-ae’s angst is very compelling, and I’m certainly rooting for her character, but I don’t want her to ignore the fact that Bong-sun is the one with a whole life ahead of her. Plus I really want her to shift her focus to her own death (which seems to involve a truly terrible series of violent crimes by Sung-jae, gack), not only for her own sake, but to make sure he gets put away for good. Frankly the conflict is richer when Soon-ae’s feelings complicate the romance, so it’s not like I dislike where the story is going—there’s just more danger in how it plays out when loving Sun-woo back means that she could lose sight of the fact that this life isn’t hers to live. I trust that she’ll stop herself from crossing that line, but it’ll probably be a painful process. I guess acceptance is always the hardest part of death, even when you’re the one who’s dead.