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Legend of the Blue Sea: Episode 8

People do some growing up this episode, and I suppose by people I mostly mean our childlike mermaid—although she isn’t the only one to make big strides in facing up to truths and trying to deal with them. It’s an episode chock-full of emotional beats, as people are forced to recognize that problems move on whether you like them or not, so you’d better have a hand in doing something about them.

 

 
EPISODE 8 RECAP

As Chung takes a dip in the pool, we hear the merman’s earlier warning to her: that no human would be able to accept a mermaid for what she is, including the man she loves.

Joon-jae returns to the house unexpectedly, and his attention is drawn to the pool area. As he approaches, he meets Chung’s eye just as she surfaces, and they both freeze in surprise.

She frantically orders him to stop right there, and Joon-jae does, out of shock more than anything. He glimpses her bare skin, and when she yells at him to look away, he immediately turns, flustered. Heh, to his ears it sounds like she’s afraid he’ll try something, and he belatedly objects to her forceful reaction.

Once she’s safely two-legged again, Chung comes into view, and asks Joon-jae about the question he’d been about to ask when she cut him off. He has to think to recall it, and then starts in on the scolding about how she can’t be so careless when she’s living in a house full of men.

Chung retorts that he shouldn’t be bursting in suddenly, and that actually chastens him until he remembers that this is his house. Joon-jae argues, “So who should be the careful one—you or me?” Chung: “You.”

He says she should count herself lucky that it was him who came in and not anybody else, although when she asks why that would be lucky, he has no answer. Then he orders her to hurry and change, and she points out that he has to leave first. Ha, I love how he doesn’t even realize when or how he lost the upper hand.

Joon-jae returns to the car without even collecting the phone he went back for, figuring he’ll make do without it. After giving his partners the side-eye, he makes a house announcement that everybody must ring the doorbell before entering, including himself.

Nam-doo asks why, and Joon-jae pulls the “my house, my rules” line. Then he wonders why it’s so warm today and fans himself, only to have Nam-doo say the temperature is subzero.

Chung shares her close call with her merman friend Jung-hoon, who cautions her to be careful, warning that Joon-jae will have a lot of questions in response to her suspicious behavior. She says that he’s already hounding her about what happened in Spain, and Jung-hoon insists that she can’t let him know: No mermaid coming outs! (He uses a hilarious mishmash word, akin to “mer-ming out.”)

Jung-hoon notes that it’s a good thing that lies exist in the human world; mermaid telepathy makes it a non-issue in their world. To illustrate his point, he points to a store ad, which reads, “Free phones! 100%! The shopowner is crazy!” She’s ready to take the sign literally, but Jung-hoon says that the shopowner isn’t crazy; the ad is just telling you to come and spend your money. Same goes for store employees who pile on the flattery; they don’t mean it, they just want you to buy.

Most important of all, he cautions her not to be taken in by the words “I love you,” which are common and spoken insincerely. To demonstrate, he calls a service number on his phone, and the call service agent answers, “I love you, Customer.”

Chung asks how to know when somebody is lying, and Jung-hoon gives her clues: evading eye contact, stammering, touching an ear or lips.

All these are on full display as Joon-jae protests that he’s totally not preoccupied with Chung these days, stammering before touching his lip and looking away. Nam-doo points out how strange it is for Joon-jae to be controlling about a woman’s clothing, and Joon-jae argues that he does the same for Nam-doo and Tae-oh. He makes it a point to fuss over Tae-oh’s clothing now, but neither partner is buying his denials.

Joon-jae gets dropped off near Shi-ah’s museum preservation center, and his unexpected visit brightens her mood. He asks about the vase she’d been working on and the details discovered on it.

Shi-ah confirms that it belonged to a mayor named Kim Dam-ryung and shows him the drawing of the mermaid kissing a man. She points out the peculiarity of a Joseon-era artifact depicting someone dressed in the modern style, as though he peered into the future.

As Joon-jae looks closer at the image, a memory flashes through his mind: him sinking in the sea in Spain, a mermaid swimming toward him, their underwater kiss.

Next, Joon-jae visits a man he calls “professor” and explains that he’s been feeling strange lately, and dreaming strange dreams. When he saw the picture on the vase, he was struck with the absurd thought that it was himself. He explains that it’s different from the little bits of memory erased in hypnosis—this is like only one type of memory has been erased.

Joon-jae asks the professor if this is possible. The man replies that there are types of amnesia that only affect a particular person or topic.

Joon-jae is put under hypnosis, and the professor directs him to return to the very first moment regarding “that person.”

Snippets of scenes flash through his mind, from Dam-ryung’s Joseon life: wearing the jade bracelet, jumping into a swordfight, leading a woman by the hand. The woman turns, and he sees her clearly: She has Chung’s face. (Er, Se-hwa’s face. Same difference.)

Joon-jae jerks awake, breathing hard in his shock. His professor prods him to share what he’s seen, and why do I feel like he’s a little too eager to get that answer?

Joon-jae recalls something the professor had told him before: that what he sees could be images from his unconscious, or a false world that he created himself. He decides the latter is what he’s seeing: “If that’s not it…” He sighs heavily, not even able to finish that thought.

Joon-jae returns home that evening, and the sight of Chung brings back that memory of Se-hwa. Noting that she’s dressed to leave the house, he adopts an indifferent attitude, as though he’s not at all interested in where she’s going. Then he casually informs her of their brand-new house curfew, warning that she’ll be locked out if she returns after 8 o’clock.

Nam-doo points out that he’s essentially telling her not to leave, since it’s already 7:30. Joon-jae insists that he doesn’t care who she’s meeting, or whether it’s a man or a woman, as long as Chung is home by curfew.

Nam-doo knocks aside a magazine and sees the civil servant exam study guide underneath it. Joon-jae makes a grab for it, but Nam-doo has too much fun needling him about it to let it drop. Joon-jae says he was just using it for research purposes, which is about as convincing as mud.

Chung decides she’d rather go out tomorrow than tonight, and Joon-jae hides his smile.

After he leaves, Nam-doo asks Chung where she was headed, and she holds up her black plastic bag and says she was going to trade it for money and give it all to Joon-jae. Nam-doo laughs until he peers in the bag and pulls out a pearl in wonder, asking how she got them.

She replies, “I worked hard and made them.” Cut to a flashback of Chung crying in front of the television, watching her former co-star Park Hae-jin (in another of this PD’s previous dramas, Doctor Stranger—I love all the overlapping meta that this cast and crew’s filmographies afford), which she follows with That Winter, the Wind Blows.

Nam-doo marvels at her mysterious talent, and asks if he can keep one pearl. Chung snatches the bag from him, but then she gets distracted by the announcement from the talking rice cooker that delicious rice is ready. While she congratulates the cooker on a job well done, Nam-doo hides one pilfered pearl behind his back.

The next day, Chung and merman Jung-hoo are out for a stroll when he doubles over clutching his chest. Oh noes! I was hoping the terminal illness would take much longer to kick in, but he’s definitely looking worse for wear.

Jung-hoo feels that his heart is almost at its end, and just to make it through the day, he has to spend hours in the water.

Chung asks if there’s any cure, and he says the woman he loves can return to him—but she won’t, because she married someone else. Chung urges him to return to the sea rather than staying here foolishly, but Jung-hoo turns that around on her: “Why come here and take his mean treatment, wondering when he’ll love you back?” He urges her to return to the ocean, because it’s not too late for her.

“If I go back, how would I live, missing him?” she asks sadly. “That’s why I’m here, dying away,” he sighs. “Even if I went back, living wouldn’t be living. I could die here, or go there and live as though dead. It’s all the same.”

Chung starts to cry, and he reminds her to catch her tears.

Jung-hoo wishes the instinct of a mermaid to follow their beloved human to land could be erased, and says that he’ll be reborn as a human and date women left and right. It’s too mean for a heart to only beat for one person, he says bitterly.

Chung asks how long her heart will be able to hang on. He doesn’t know, but given that he was dumped two months ago, he figures she can watch what happens to him. “Don’t look at me with such pity,” he tells her. “This is your future.”

Detective Hong and his partner stake out Joon-jae’s neighborhood, hoping for a return of murderer Dae-young. The partner grumbles that he wouldn’t return to the scene of the crime, but Detective Hong suspects that Dae-young is looking for something (he’d noticed the doors marked with an X) and will be back. Of course, the moment Dae-young literally walks by, even bumping their car accidentally, they totally miss him in his maintenance worker disguise. You don’t deserve to catch him if you’re just going to willfully ignore glaring clues like that!

Joon-jae makes himself a cup of tea, which makes him think of the friendly ajusshi (Manager Nam) who gave it to him. He can’t shake how the man in his dream, bloodied and unconscious and in Joseon-era clothing, had Manager Nam’s face.

Joon-jae tries calling Manager Nam, but still gets the message that the phone is off. He texts instead, asking for a return call.

Outside, Dae-young assumes the guise of a worker on break, and nearly gets into a scene with a drunk man who flicks away a cigarette butt. The drunkard senses something in Dae-young that warns him not to escalate the confrontation, and he picks up his cigarette butt and hurries off.

Dae-young has Manager Nam’s phone, and he reads Joon-jae’s text, then types back a reply. Joon-jae’s relieved to hear back, and agrees to meet tomorrow evening.

Chung lies awake in bed, thinking of her hardening heart and how much time she has left. She gets out of bed with purpose and asks Joon-jae if she can come down, ignoring his “no” to join him.

Saying that she needs an answer to something quickly, she asks point-blank, “When do you think you’ll come to like me?” She knows he doesn’t like her now, but asks if he has any plans to in the future.

Joon-jae says no readily, and she urges him to think about it carefully, looking at him with a hopeful expression on her face.

In his usual brusque tone, he asks if she’s really that dumb, reiterating that he has absolutely no plans to love her. Chung says she’ll give him time, to which he replies that a person doesn’t start liking someone just because you give them a few days. He calls it the hardest thing in the world.

“The easiest thing in the world is for a person to disappoint someone,” he says. “Even if you like someone just by appearances, you’ll be disappointed quickly—that’s what people do. There’s no love that overcomes disappointment. So a person liking another person is the hardest thing.”

She contradicts him readily: “For me, loving is the easiest thing to do. Even if I try not to, I love anyway. Even if I wanted to feel disappointment, it doesn’t happen. Love wins all.”

She says this in an earnest voice with a serious face, and he stares at her for long moments. She asks him to let her know if he ever makes a plan to like her, and heads back up to her room.

The conversation affects both of them, who spend the night tossing and turning.

Shi-ah sits with her sister-in-law Jin-joo, a bit impressed at how Jin-joo sucks up to her mother-in-law with a fierce, sugar-coated vengeance. Jin-joo offers relationship advice, saying that men are helpless against the woman who treats his mother well, pointing to her husband as proof.

Shi-ah initially scoffs, but her interest is piqued at Jin-joo’s advice to get in good with the mother of the man she likes. She notes that he’s never talked about his family, but Jin-joo tells her to ply him with liquor, then ask.

Just then, Joon-jae’s mother serves them coffee, and Shi-ah literally spits her mouthful back out because it’s different from her usual brand. Joon-jae’s mother takes back the coffee dutifully, but adds a last word about how it’s dandy to think of the laborers in far-flung locales, “But it’s also important to show manners for the people who live with you.”

Shi-ah bristles, asking if the housekeeper is daring to teach her something. Mom replies, “I didn’t do it meaning to teach you, but if you learned something, that’s fortunate.” Heh, I love dryly sassy Mom. Shi-ah gapes at the nerve, while Jin-joo turns her back to what’s important: Getting friendly with Joon-jae’s mother. I am so going to enjoy watching the irony hammer fall on Shi-ah’s head.

Shi-ah goes straight to Nam-doo for information, but he’s reluctant to talk about Joon-jae’s mom, knowing Joon-jae would flip his lid. She pressures him anyway, so Nam-doo offers a deal, wanting to know Joon-jae asked her about the vase.

Shi-ah shows him the mermaid drawing, and Nam-doo tries to put the pieces together, sensing there’s a deeper connection regarding Dam-ryung, the vase, and the jade bracelet.

Nam-doo tells Shi-ah that all he knows about Joon-jae’s mother is that they were separated when he was ten, and she’s done such a good job keeping her tracks hidden that she’s difficult to find.

Joon-jae’s mother looks longingly at her old family photo—as does Joon-jae’s chaebol father, who’s still hoping to find him. He calls his lawyer about notarizing his will, asking if it’s possible to confer an inheritance with just a national identity number, without the person directly being there.

The lawyer confirms it, then turns to tell Joon-jae’s stepmom about it; he’s clearly under her direction.

As Shi-ah heads out after her chat with Nam-doo, she finds Chung waiting to talk with her. Chung’s demeanor is huffy, but her question surprises Shi-ah: How to make a man fall for her? She insists that Shi-ah knows how, pointing out how coy Shi-ah gets whenever she’s around Joon-jae. And Chung is running out of time, and needs Joon-jae to like her back quickly.

Getting a gleam in her eye, Shi-ah explains that Joon-jae’s quite easy, and that absence makes the heart grow fonder. Living together is actually counterproductive, and could make him dislike her.

For a second it looks like Chung believes her, but then she jeers at Shi-ah’s lies, having picked up on all her cues: She avoided eye contact and touched her ear and hair. “I’ve figured out how to deal with you,” Chung says. “I can just do the opposite of what you said, right?”

Then the instant Joon-jae walks into the room, Chung does as good as her promise and sticks to his side, following him around the room.

She asks if Joon-jae has made a plan to like her yet. He protests that it’s only been a day, and she offers more time. She does insist, though, on accompanying him to the library, and Joon-jae initially protests. But hearing that Tae-oh will be home all day while Nam-doo is out, he concedes that Chung could benefit from a trip to the library. (Tae-oh shoots him a knowing look, because he has ears and isn’t an idiot.)

At the library, Joon-jae sits Chung down at a table and tells her to read while he finds what he needs. When she talks in her normal loud voice, he leans in close to tell her to talk quietly, and she looooves that. She leans into him to whisper happily, “I like the library!” He laughs at her cute reaction.

Just then, a young woman taps Joon-jae to hand him a note, and he puffs up a little, anticipating a flirty come-on—only to open it to read a request to talk outside or move seats, because they’re being too loud. Chung asks what the note reads, and Joon-jae lies that it says the girl likes him and thinks he’s handsome.

Chung bolts up instantly to do some damage, and Joon-jae has to drag her back to her seat (which she enjoys, since that requires him putting his arms around her).

Joon-jae looks up the archives for information on Dam-ryung, and reads the basic facts of his life: birth, marriage, wife’s death, appointment to a town on Gangwon province—and, later that year, his death at the age of 27.

As that sinks in, suddenly we transition to Dam-ryung’s side of the scene—he jolts awake as though the library scene was his dream. He’s keeping watch over unconscious Se-hwa, and admits to the doctor that constant nightmares have made him afraid of falling asleep, where he’s almost unable to distinguish between what’s real and what’s a dream.

He thinks back to the part of his dream where Joon-jae reads of his death, exactly twenty days from now. The doctor tells him that he can tell Se-hwa isn’t an ordinary person from her pulse, and that if she truly is a mermaid, she will not be able to recover here. He says that the best way to save her life is to return her to the sea.

Dam-ryung takes the jade bracelet off his wrist and puts it around Se-hwa’s, which transitions us back to the library as Joon-jae inspects it. He notes that Dam-ryung died at the same age that he is now.

Chung sits in the children’s section, reading (what else?) The Little Mermaid. A little boy walks by and finds a pearl on the ground, just as Chung comes the end of the story, when the little mermaid threw herself into the sea and turned into bubbles.

Manager Nam lies unconscious in the hospital, with his wife and Chi-hyun keeping vigil. Chi-hyun doesn’t believe that Manager Nam would drink and drive, and the wife agrees that there’s something off about the accident, but has been unable to find much about it. She looked into her husband’s cell phone records, but it showed nothing odd leading up to the accident.

Chi-hyun asks to take the records, offering to ask his officer friends for help investigating the accident. The wife cries in gratitude, having been afraid to press the issue after Chi-hyun’s mother advised her not to—and that immediately strikes Chi-hyun as suspicious.

As Joon-jae leaves the library with Chung, he gets a text from “Manager Nam” (Dae-young) confirming their meeting tonight. Chung declines his offer to take her home, saying that she’s meeting someone, and Joon-jae guesses it’s her male civil servant friend and pettishly reminds her of curfew time.

Stepmom drops in on Chairman Heo at the office, suggesting dinner just as he’s heading out. He starts to explain that he has plans, but his attorney calls to reschedule, freeing him up for dinner after all. Stepmom plays it off like a happy coincidence, though we all know that she’s Up to No Good.

Chung visits the coast guard office looking for her friend, and hears from the guard on duty that Jung-hoon went into cardiac arrest a few days ago after making a rescue. (Waaaaah!) He was rushed to the hospital, but was dead on arrival.

Another woman bursts into the office then (cameo by Jung Yumi), identifying herself as the Kim Hye-jin who’d been called about the same matter. The guard hands her a small box, explaining that it was in Jung-hoon’s locker with her name and number.

Hye-jin opens it to find a ring adorned with a single pink pearl—the tear of happiness. Jung-hoon had told Chung he’d only cried one tear of happiness while living here, and she relays that message: “He said he cried in happiness because of you. He must have wanted to leave those good times here.”

Hye-jin says she didn’t know he had a friend he could share all his thoughts with, when he’d been so full of secrets with her. Chung asks if she left because of his secrets, and Hye-jin replies, “Secrets are made because we’re different from each other, so that we don’t reveal what makes us different. And those secrets ultimately lead to both of us being hurt—both the person who hides, and the person who’s lied to. So if we’re too different, in the end, we can’t go together.”

Chung asks if that’s really true, and Hye-jin says that you’ll hurt each other: “Can you go together, with love as the reason?”

Chung says that Jung-hoon didn’t regret it, even if his love caused his heart to harden and die. She’d wondered why he hadn’t erased Hye-jin’s memory when she found out, and he’d replied that there were too many good times to erase, and that he’ wanted those memories of love to be a strength to Hye-jin for a long time.

Tears fall from Hye-jin’s eyes, and she hurriedly excuses herself before she starts sobbing, holding the pearl ring to her heart.

And then, Chung winces to feel her own heart tighten in pain.

Joon-jae arrives at the appointed meeting area, but upon seeing that it’s a darkened, empty building, he retrieves a small handgun and tucks it away before making a call.

He heads inside the abandoned building, and his memory flashes back to being tailed on the highway and having a strange man posing as an officer show up at his gate.

On alert, he makes his way along the corridor and pauses to call Manager Nam. The answering ringtone sounds nearby, and he approaches slowly, eyes peeled as he rounds the corner.

He relaxes when he finds the room empty, though he jumps when his phone rings again. It’s Chung, calling from the river, and she doesn’t sound good. Joon-jae doesn’t notice a shadowy figure behind him and tells Chung he’ll be right over.

Then he turns and sees Dae-young standing there menacingly, and asks if he’s the one who followed him and impersonated a cop. Moreover, where is Ajusshi?

He wants quick answers, but Dae-young isn’t inclined to oblige and twirls a hammer in his hand. In a sudden lunge, he swings at Joon-jae’s head, which Joon-jae manages to dodge, countering by using his gun to spray something into Dae-young’s eyes.

Joon-jae kicks away the hammer, then pulls out his lighter and holds up the flame to Dae-young’s face—and that triggers a flash of Lord Yang.

Joon-jae is so stunned that he backs off, giving Dae-young the opportunity to attack, going after Joon-jae with full force. Joon-jae takes a beating, and gets a chair broken over his back that sends him crashing down.

Joon-jae struggles to get up an defend himself, only to have Dae-young ready to go at him with a screwdriver. Not the pretty face!

Thankfully, they’re interrupted by flashing headlights and honking cars. Dae-young scampers off first, and Joon-jae makes his way outside in difficulty, where he finds a wall of cars.

A flashback reveals that he’d called Nam-doo before heading in, having been plagued with an uneasy feeling. Nam-doo had been too far to make it quickly but offered to call the police, and Joon-jae had countered that he’d get arrested too. Instead, he’d instructed him to call nearby taxis to the location.

Pretty nifty thinking, since the taxis saved his life, and he offers an additional exorbitant rate to be driven to the Han River as quickly as possible.

By the water, Chung thinks of Kim Hye-jin’s words and wonders if she really can’t be with Joon-jae for the long haul.

After urging his driver to speed, Joon-jae arrives at the park by the river and searches for Chung, holding his side and hobbling in pain.

Chung recalls Jung-hoon’s urging to return to the ocean, and forlornly looks out at the water, wondering if she should go. Which is when Joon-jae’s voice calls out from behind her: “Go where?”

He’s full of concern over her condition, while she takes one look at his battered face and is worried for him. It would almost be funny, the way they ignore each other’s concern about themselves to worry about each other, but it’s too earnest a moment.

Chung sheds a tear as she tells him, in an echo of Hye-jin’s words about Jung-hoon, “I can’t tell you anything. I’m full of secrets. But you being injured or hurt because of my secrets—I don’t want that. I don’t want to make you sad in the end, either.”

He asks what she means to do, then, and she says, “I’ll go back. I’ll go to where I was, before it’s too late.”

That seems to deliver a blow to Joon-jae, who reminds her of that plan to like her that she wanted so much. He tells her, “I’ve made it, that plan. So don’t go.”

Epilogue.

Joseon. Dam-ryung sits at Se-hwa’s bedside, holding her hand, and she finally stirs awake.

He helps her sit up, and she tells him with tearful eyes, “I will return to the sea. I know well that that is the way for both of us to live. Like the first time we parted, when I alone had the memories and you did not, we should have lived in our own worlds that way. I will not come anymore. So you must forget it all too.”

Dam-ryung asks why she erased his memory the first time they parted, and she answers that if she hadn’t, he would have felt constant pain.

He replies, “If you hadn’t erased them, I could have felt constant longing. This time, do not erase them. You mustn’t erase them. These recollections, these memories—although they hurt, I will carry them through the end. They are mine.”

He leans in slowly, and kisses her.

 
COMMENTS

First off, can we take a moment to mourn the loss of merman Jo Jung-seok? Waaaaaah! For a guest appearance, he sure packed a punch, and not with an onslaught of ad-libbing and hilarity, as you might expect of a Jo Jung-seok appearance, but with earnest and wistful stirrings of the heart. I didn’t necessarily have time to get truly attached to his character given the quickness of the arc, but it was an effectively bittersweet way to play out Chung’s dilemma in the tragic direction—as cautionary tale, yes, but also to provide the counterpoint to Chung’s sunny, one-sided optimism that never considers the downside and only expects everything to work out eventually.

It’s funny how, before merman Jung-hoon came on the scene, Chung seemed simple and bubbly in an endearing way, but her lack of sense was a point that did feel a teeny bit dissatisfying. (I found her adorable and lovable, but oh my goodness not the shiniest bubble in the sea.) But the moment a smarter, wiser merman showed up to point out just how foolish she’d been, when her actions were confirmed as thoughtless even within her mythology, it was like it gave us permission to move past “I hate that she’s dumb” to feeling pathos for her in a “Oh, honey” sort of way. It’s the difference between presenting a dumb character as someone we ought to agree with and presenting a dumb character as a flawed figure who now has to deal with the consequences of her actions.

I’m excited to have this confession capping off this episode, because it finally puts us on equal ground, and we all know that the ski resort one didn’t count. It’s been a hoot watching Joon-jae struggle with his denial and get all jealous over Chung possibly liking another man (that he’s jealous of himself is the cherry on the cake—cherry in the fist?), but now it’s time to have him work through his feelings honestly. I don’t even think he was spurred by the fear of losing her after she announced her intent to leave; I’d guess that things came into clarity when he heard she was in pain and raced to come get her. Not that it would lessen the revelation; I just read the scene as him coming all ready to make the confession.

I wonder if her telling him she decided to leave will change their future dynamic, however, because even if she decides to stay, he has some ground to make up for. We know what drove that decision, but as far as he’s concerned, she’s leaving because he pushed her away, and I am definitely not above having some sadistic fun at his expense. Please grovel! It would be so entertaining.

I like that Dam-ryung called out Se-hwa on the choice to erase his memory—or rather, the removal of his choice in the matter. This is part of the recurring pattern across timelines, where the mermaid takes on the burden of the love on her own in a selfless gesture, not realizing that there are worse things than losing love. For instance, as the adage goes, never having had it in the first place (or thinking you didn’t). (For what it’s worth, my interpretation is that a mermaid’s kiss isn’t an automatic memory-loss-inducer—it seems to me there has to be an element of intent on the mermaid’s part—so I’m not thinking that the epilogue kiss will automatically erase Dam-ryung’s memory again.)

I’m intrigued at the deepening connection between the two heroes, especially at the part where it seems they’re both experiencing dreams at the same time. I know Dam-ryung is in the past, but it’s almost as though he and Joon-jae are living out their connection concurrently, sort of like the way time flowed in time-bendy dramas Nine and Signal. And in this case, I’m very curious to know whether they’ll be able to affect each other’s lifetimes, purely through finding out about this connection. It may not be a big deal for a past figure to affect someone in the present, but it sure would be fascinating if his glimpse into Joon-jae’s world could affect Dam-ryung’s present. Save Dam-ryung!

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jo jung seok, best cameo ever

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ikr who knew i'd cry over a cameo

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+1

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right? I cried SO hard. I thought, Beanies around the world are crying right now! and how much good we could do if all our tears were pearls, too.

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Ugh, it's like, all in all, obviously I'm grateful to SBS for giving him back to me for one more week...but, ahhhhhh my heart, how could they take him away from me again like this?!?!

Lol, I thought his cameo would give me the closure I needed to move on from JI for awhile, but the tragic turn of events in this episode has me returning to it AGAIN. Sighhh, JJS...why do you keeping doing this to me? At this rate, I will never move on!

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Well, at least we know merman jjs reincarnate as petty Lee Hwa-Shin and live happily ever after with Pyo Na-Ri.

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I. Hate. When. JJS. Dies. In. Any. Drama.

A few months ago, I watched Kings 2 Hearts and there as well, he made me cry tears of blood.

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Lol, I literally just watched that. Then had to recover by watching JI.

THEN I finally checked out Time Renegades.

Only to have to cure my heartbreak again with JI.

Now this! My heart can't take it.

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Actually, now that I think about it, the past-present connection between Joon-jae and Dam-ryeong reminds me even more of Time Renegades than Signal. In that, the male leads also catch glimpses of each other's lives in their dreams.

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Agreed, Chandler.

This guy dies in every alternate drama/drama I watch. The best cure that I have found is to watch glimpses of Oh My Ghostess, if he dies somewhere. Like, omooooooooooo he's sooooo cute in that drama that I feel like dying due to their cuteness.

And yes, everyone's saying so. But I haven't watched Time Renegades. Is it good?

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I too just finished watching (skimming) K2H for Jo Jung Suk - if I am a mermaid, I would have harvested so many big pearls that I can share to a whole neighborhood, with still some left.

Gah this guy! This month I have also watched Time Renegade, My Love My Bride, and rewatching Oh My Ghostess for the nth time. I am flying down to Japan next week, I am praying that they have Hyung on the plane!

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The best cure that I've found has helped not only with JJS and JI withdrawal, but has also given me life when I've sorely needed-- which is Youths Over Flowers: Iceland (with Jo Jung-seok, Jung Woo, Kang Haneul, and Jung Sang-hoon). I haven't finished watching it yet because I'm saving the last couple of episodes for when I need an emergency shot of endorphins, but I can tell you that this show has been powerful medicine for my heart. I just adore these guys. If you haven't watched it yet, you're in for a treat! You may even cry some pink pearls!

If anyone's looking for an eng-subbed version, kshowonline (dotcom) has subbed it, so you can find it there.

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@Boomboompow
OMG, you're so damn lucky!!! All the best, chingu.

Hopefully, you can meet him. Would pray for you! :D

Honestly, Idk how TR is actually.

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@risa: Thank you. I never had the time to watch it.

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Legitimately cried for a whole month (whenever I would think about his character) after I watched that drama.

That drama affected me very deeply. Haha

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I know, right? I was so affected that despite that drama getting a happy ending, I couldn't be happy at all and kept on being like "damn, why did he just leave?"

Thankfully, Oh My Ghostess helped me tide over the depression, honestly.

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When JJS met his end in K2H, it was my first ugly-sobbing-crying EVER. It was hours later that I finally was able to finish the final episode. And then I cried even more. He's amazing, is he not?

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I know, man. Like ugly means very ugly. :-(

I felt so depressed that I couldn't even be a bit happy when the drama ended. The feels were way too much to be handled.

He's damn amazing. I mean, I loved him in Oh My Ghostess so much. It looked like JJS was actually in love with PBY. His ears would turn red, he would always keep blushing....aaahhhh, cuteeee and hotttt!

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When he died in that drama, I couldn't believe it, I was fully expecting it to be a fake out!! I hated the writer for a good bit after that! Robot JJS stole my heart unexpectedly, I'd started that drama because of Seunggi puppy and stayed for him and JJS robot. <3

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@ AniLoh -- haha, I saw the blushing and red ears, too, which made me grin and giggle. He's so good!!!

@ MIN -- I started watching for LSG as well, but JJS stole the show for me. I still won't watch that series again because I know my heart will be ripped out of my chest as badly as the first time watching.

Lol, JJS stole the comments section for this show, too!

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@MIN: The thing was that he told that princess to wait for him, supported her throughout her handicap, gave her strength and the bird....and he died.

And then they even gave an imaginary sequence between the two in the last episode; I literally felt like kicking someone! >:(

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Right?!?!?! :'( my heart hurt very disproportionately to the tiny amount of screen time he got. cries.

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+1 my tears just flowed down without my knowledge

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+1

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Now This is a cameo! That 7-sec appearance of Yoo Ah In in DotS was a tease and a lie!

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This is a full guest appearance, not a cameo. A cameo is a quickie walk on like Alfred Hitchcock used to do. When Do Joon shows up in your cafeteria as his Let's Eat character and tries to recruit you for the foodie club at college, that's a cameo.

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+1 JJS is a way for SBS to lure us (who cannot move on from JI yet) into LOTBS :P

LOTBS is interesting with pretty faces and scenes so hopefully it will keep on getting better.

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He was very, very affecting in this role.

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I don't know if it was just me, but I felt a tinge of discomfort when Joon-Jae chastised Shim-Chung for her wardrobe choice last episode, and again when he enforced the curfew this episode. Sure, on the one hand, his jealousy and growing care for Chung is endearing, but it seems as though his jealousy was limiting Shim-Chung's own agency in a way. Like, I get that you feel a sense of responsibility for her, and are even growing romantic feelings, but it sort of reinforces that sentiment that high-handed jealousy = love/care which can reign dangerous in some cases. I do understand that context has an integral part in this (she’s a mermaid who isn’t the sharpest tool in the shed, and whose pretty innocent) so his worry and sense of responsibility makes sense. BUT should that sense of responsibility translate into the policing of outfit choices that are honestly appropriate, and the enforcement of curfews that make no sense (8PM WHEN SHE WAS LEAVING AT 7:30??? REALLY JOON-JAE??) sure, the Kdrama-fan in me was swooning, but the feminist in me was raging and making fists.#LETCHUNGWEARWHATSHEWANTS2016

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the curfew thing didn't bother me as much because he probably thought she was going to meet up with jung hoon and he didn't want her to but the clothing part did. i hated how they made it seem like he's caring for her when he told her to change when it just seemed controlling

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I was cringing

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A curfew for a grown-up woman is acceptable?! Out of jealousy?!

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I found it funny...this is a DRAMA after all! I expect things to be over the top! Let's not lose our sense of humor...

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Neither of those bothered me because I took them as being written specifically to show him being an ass. Who tells someone to change clothes "because I bought those clothes to stay in the closet"? Or suddenly sets a "house curfew" for adults that's half an hour later than the current time? I took it as there purely to exaggerate the comedy of how he's working so hard at pretending he's not feeling what he's feeling about her. The other two guys' reactions showed that they thought he was nuts in both cases. I thought there was no mistaking it for "real" behavior, if that makes sense.

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It bothered me too actualy. Sure that makes sense that it was weaved in to highlight his personality, but you can’t help but feel uncomfortable when you’re watching controlling behavior and subtle sexism take place in such a typical way (i.e. “your skirt is too short, go change”) And maybe I grew in discomfort once the mermaid complied, but the whole dynamic just felt really controlling to me

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Exactly.

This is a drama. There's absolutely no reason to look at it logically.

I know the feminism in you might be peaking @sueberry, but this was just an exaggeration to show how "unfair" he's being.

Also, it happens in many K-Dramas. I have watched tons of dramas and there have been so many K-Dramas that take such an approach.

For the same reason why Do Min Joo prevented Cheon Song Yi from enacting a kissing or a back hug scene as well, although it is an actress's job, considering that CSY was a hallyu star in that drama.

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On the one hand, of course, its a Kdrama, I don’t think I’d still be watching Kdramas if I deconstructed them based on my own views and opinions. But, at the same time, is it okay for dramas to incorporate (and dare i say.. normalize?) that typical sexist practice where the jealous boyfriend tells his girlfriend to change because her skirt is too short. Sure, I’ll continue to watch this show and laugh at Joon-Jae and his antics, but I can’t hide my discomfort when something so palpably sexist comes up.

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Your point seems legitimate to me! But sadly, it happens in mannyyyyy dramas.

Even those forced kiss scenes from the guy's side, beating girls (in old dramas though), bothering the girls and nitpicking their behaviors and the heroine getting instructed by the hero to do this and not that, etc etc etc. are not fair.

What do say? I guess, it's okay with the Korean audience because it still exists. :/

Yes, of course, you should mention such things. Who knows the writer might get conscious later? :)

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I don't think it's normalizing the behavior at all. It's satire. You purposely use ridiculous behavior as if it is normal in order to point out how ridiculous it really is.

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i totally agree with you! i think if this type of behavior is presented as romantic then it's problematic... but when it's presented in this way then it's actually a nice commentary on how ridiculous it sounds~

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+100

That's why, I just let it go even though it hurt my eye, but what option do I have as well?
Neither can I say/do something about it, considering that it's so common, nor can I leave this drama and think badly about the characters.

</3

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Korean dramas have always been like this tbh. Exception: OHYA. I'm gonna go and rewatch that

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Lols I thought it was cute he was so concerned for her ?

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yeah, it definitely bothered me too. :\

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Yeah I know my feminist voice is raging all the time with asian dramas... but not in this particular scene....

Why? Because what JJ tried is to introduce this new curfew so that SC won't have enough time to go out and meet the merman. Why? Because he is jealous of her meeting another man... If she would have done something else I bet he'd be just very curious of what she is doing but not prevent her from going =)

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Why you felt discomfort she Nari demanded Hawshin not to wear glasses and fight with him later for doing just that, this jealousy and that's that. If she said no and then he force her to comply then this a problem. Don't you think that if he walked shirtless and women admired him she will protest. She almost jumped a girl because she thought she liked him.
It is easy to through the word feminist without knowing the meaning.

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jealously that is controlling should never be mistakened for love. A man can love you and can even feel jealous if you're meeting with another man, but jealousy that turns into him controlling her, and dictating what she can and can't wear isn't the good type of jealousy. He's limiting her own choices which is unfair.

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I didn't mind it one bit (I've never allowed any %#*&@ male to tell me one thing about my clothing choices or whether I shave my legs or not). And you know why? Because I took it as it was intended, as slapstick comedy. just to show how ridiculous people become when they are in love, and the fact he he was insanely jealous.
Even his buddy was pointing out how ridiculous and preposterous he was. And remember he was the one to buy the outfit in the first place, which makes it even more hilarious.

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thanks for the recap

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the way they stare at each other... *clenches heart*

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NOOOOOOOO... Merman JJS.... I CRY. I cry worthless, pearl-less tears for you.

Also.. Please explain how can JJH make Hobo-fashion look like Boho-chic fashion. Mer-magic?

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Haha, love your comment!

Alas, the show should have said that JJS went missing-on-duty, then we could have lived in a somewhat blissful ignorance.

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I'm really interested in Nam Doo's Joseon counterpart since we haven't seen it yet. In the Joseon story, Ma Dae Young's counterpart is settled though he can escape prison. I have a feeling Nam Doo's character is the big bad of Joseon and Ma Dae Young's counterpart is just a small villain in the story.
Also, I wonder how Joon Jae will react when he finally discovers Chung as a mermaid. Will he be like how Jo Jung Seok's describes how human react or will he be like Dam Ryung who cooly accepts her. It's two different times so how Lee Min Ho's character would react would probably be a bit different. How different is what I'm curious about. I hope it's Joon Jae who discovers her as a mermaid first before ANYONE ELSE! Also just what exactly is Chi Hyun's motive? Going against his mother? I wonder if he's good or bad as we've seen his history with Joon Jae before. And with Joon Jae hyposis scene and the dreams of Dam Ryung, it looks like instead of a past and present, it's like both times are actually running equally like a different universe instead. I'm curious about that.

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And here I am thinking that Nam doo's Joseon counterpart is Lord Yang and Shi-ah as his concubine. It's quite a little late to introduce new villains in the Joseon storyline, don't you think? And both characters have the same traits and personalities except the faces. But reincarnation doesn't have to be the same faces right? They might make an exception for the villain just to throw us off.

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You have a point but in this drama, the reincarnations are of the same faces. Lord Yang and his concubine's counterpart is Ma Dae Young and Joon Jae's stepmom (the concubine actress was the stepmom when she was younger). I don't think it's late to introduce one since it's a short story compared to Joon Jae and Chung's story.

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I'm 80% sure Shi-Ah's counterpart is the late, jilted Joseon wife.

As for whether Shi-Ah, Chi-Hyun & Nam-Doo are evil: I think the show is deliberately keeping us in suspense and I wouldn't care to guess any farther than that they probably aren't all evil -- we have enough obstacles with Jin-Joo, Dae-Young, crooked lawyer & the whole mermaid-heart thing, so we don't need much more.

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I think Chi Hyun is a good guy with a bad mom; I hope we see him in Joseon.
Lee Ji Hoon always give a good performance and I hope he gets bigger roles.

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Same here, I never believed that murderer Ma was our ultimate villain. As the story progresses Nam Doo seems to fit the bill more and more. He is the most intriguing character to me, as on the surface he looks harmless but he is an opportunist ready to pounce at every chance. We don't have any idea on what his limits are, what his agenda is, no backstory on him, and how are Shi Ah and he so close? Good thing that JJ is vary of him and keeps him at arms length.
Also I like how the Show consistently shows JJ as a cautious person who doesn't share much even with his Doc.

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Thank you for the recap. You always made my day. It made me curious even more. I can't wait for the next episode. :D

More power to you and keep it up! ;)

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In the first few episodes it seemed as if history was repeating itself because of the main characters' natures, and that was a bit cliche. However, with this reincarnation thing not purely just reincarnation, it adds an interesting and unique spice.

The episodes just keep getting better!

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I need a merman

One life one love
Awwwww

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Tnx for the recap
its awsom

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Opposite Attracts -

When Cheon countered Joon-jae with the reply "For me, loving is the easiest thing to do. Even if I try not to, I love anyway. Even if I wanted to feel disappointment, it doesn’t happen. Love wins all."

It tells me that Cheon, a romantic at heart is willing to risk it all for the man she loves, it makes my heart flutter how sincere her love is for him. <3

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Anyone notice at the end, Joon Jae heard the Chung's thoughts?!? The mer-speak!?!? I'm pretty sure that's what happened. I wonder if they'll use it more in the future!

Also, I'm all for Dam Ryung surviving... As long as Joon Jae survives this one. But I don't mind the Joseon being a tragedy (since it has that beautiful bittersweet vibe), as long as the present day gets their happy ending.

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I didnt mind Joseon tragedy in the beginning. But now Dam Ryung seems so earnest. After all the hardships they went through I just want a happy ending for the Joseon counterpart.

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Yah, I think he heard her thoughts too. I was wondering if they'll explain it away with his head getting banged up in the fight, or the hypnosis making him remember, or his acceptance that he may love her made it possible.

I am so happy about the dual time lines and how they've been handled. I'm curious as to why they slightly altered the front end to moving it more middle, but perhaps as the remainder of the series unfolds, it may mean both of them are coming closer to understanding the link.

I have to say, this drama overall has definitely been worth it. I was a bit worried at the beginning.

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Idk why but the fact that bothers me the most is that Joseon era won't be a happy ending as per the story line and that's the reason why SC waited for DR to be born again (as HJJ).

She loved only once and her heart is with DR's soul, which was reincarnated in HJJ.

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Yup mer-speak!! But if thats the case, (like merman( <3 ) said a 100 m radius(?) for the thoughts to be heard because of which merpeople couldn't lie to each other), then that would mean that SC could possibly not lie to JJ, also considering the fact that SC did not intend to speak to him but he heard her anyway??

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Yoona makes me so curious.

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Me too.
Now it seems like she isn't our merman's daughter, like I thought yesterday...
... but she still seems kinda half-mermaid, so maybe we'll get some more mermaid-out-of-water cameos later (?)

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BIG THANK YOU FOR THE SPEEDY RECAP!!
Have been refreshing the google search page for dramabeans Legend of the Blue Sea recap until Ep 8 appears....

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JJS made the more effective cameo ever, the best I've seen since Lee Min Ki in SUFBB (where is he btw? I miss him on the small screen!). But man how could anyone not want a mermaid/merman for themselves? They're faithful to their loves to the point of death and don't lie unless they have to. On a practical note they can also erase all your cringe-y memories that leave you mortified and blanket kicking at night and cry tears of pearls when watching dramas keeping you reasonably rich. Imagine making money for watching dramas and being moved! How is this not ideal???

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Not to mention, this particular merman was JJS!!! I swear, I tried, but I can't even begin to understand Jung Yumi here. How exactly could she leave such a 'catch' (lol)?!

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And she's a pretty fast mover. Supposedly she only dumped our favorite merman 2 months ago, but she's already (re)married. Doesn't quite compute.

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This part confuses me too.

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Unless she was already cheating before she officially dumped him? Or she just decided to marry the next available human? The betrayal though. The fact that he kept that ring and stayed in land for so long? Heartbreak. Because it's JJS as the merman, I can't help thinking that a romcom featuring a loyal merman and a pervy ghost would be the funniest thing ever now. Could we ever get two supernatural beings that fall in love instead of one supernatural being and one human?

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"Could we ever get two supernatural beings that fall in love instead of one supernatural being and one human?"

For real!

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This confused me too, but I interpreted it as: they broke up a while back due to secrets, then her finding out his secret and not being able to handle it. However, she continued to love him after they broke up.

More recently, though, she found someone else and re-married and since then her love for him has slowly diminished. 2 months ago, she fully stopped loving him.

I'm guessing she may have some lingering feelings left due to her reaction at his death (or anyone would probably cry at the death of an ex, especially if they literally died because you stopped loving them), but it wouldn't be love enough to keep his heart beating?

Or it could just be a plot flaw and I'm overthinking :p

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Cameo line up of this drama are awesome.
I didn't know JJS will making a cameo here.
He's GREAT as always!

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One of the most intense episodes yet.

Ahh, there were so many good moments in this drama.

First and foremost, I would like to appreciate the butterfly effect that's going on in between Dam Ryeong and Jeon Jae, where DR could see the future and JJ could see the past (through his subconscious memories).

It's eerie as well as interesting to see that JJ's words, "He dies", is heard by DR and DR could save himself and Se Hwa as well. Hopefully, DR could also do something to make JJ's memories vivid about whatever happened in Spain.

I was actually wondering that JJ could have had seen SC as a mermaid at the beginning of the episode. But, man, I love this approach of using Dam Ryeong as a catalyst in the present day more.

Writer-nim, take a bow!

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Chuang Tzu would love this. "Am I a butterfly dreaming I'm a man, or a man dreaming I'm a butterfly?"

See, my Chinese classes 40+ years ago weren't all wasted :)

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Haha, omg. It seems fascinating to me.

40 years? You must be a pro now, right?

Ni hao! :D

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Ni hao !

I've forgotten most of it. Went to Taiwan & taught English after college; then moved back 38 years ago, got into computers and haven't really touched Chinese since.

Nowadays the main benefit knowing some Chinese (and Japanese -- classes in that too) is that I can pick out kdrama Korean words that are borrowed from Chinese ("black bean noodles"), and maybe words that Korea & Japan both borrowed from China ("promise").

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I am pathetic at all other Asian languages and learning Chinese is a Herculean task for me, despite my proximity to China (since I live in India) and feel Korean is still better for me.

Also, once I tried learning Mandarin (with simplified) and, oh boy, I gave up! Haha! Every darn time I got confused with the characters and, thus, I can't even understand Hanja script in Korean.

So, you watch K-dramas and use your knowledge about Chinese and Japanese along with it? And you also know Japanese? Take a bow!

Thanks for that knowledge. Promise is kinda a common word, isn't it?

I really hope I can see you more in the comment section. :)

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That's so cool that you can pick out words in the other languages! I spoke Arabic as a kid, but forgot most of it when we moved to the US (my dad didn't want us getting picked -on for speaking English with an accent). But every once in a while, I can still pick out phrases.

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@rentenmann: That's cool. Arabic is fab as well. My best friend is purely Arabic, so she used to teach us some phrases once in a while.

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I hadn't thought about Dam Ryung & Joon Jae's connection that deeply. That's such an interesting way to connect characters! I like how although both character's don't have all the context about each other, they each have some insight on one another that the other one doesn't have. Like how Dam Ryung knows that Joon Jae has already fallen for Chung through his dreams. It'd been interesting if Joon Jae could help Dam Ryung survive with his knowledge in present day ala Park Hae Young and Lee Jae Han in Signal.

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It's one of the most interesting premises we have seen, isn't it? Like two unrelated people, related by soul, help each other indirectly and implicitly.

Wish my past doppelganger could actually show me my future too someday. T.T

But that doppelganger should be a human as well because I really think I was a bird/animal in my previous births. Haha! xD

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I really want Dam Ryeong to be saved. It's so cool that what appeared to be just a back story is as current as the 'now' timeline.

JJS as a cameo was all kinds of awesome.

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same, i first thought the first 2 or so episodes would be with the historical storyline and then it'll jump to the present but now with the possibility that dam ryung can be saved, its intriguing and i hope it can happen

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But if DR is saved would that men that the present story line is all DR's dream?? History says he died and altering history cannot bode well for SC and JJ right??

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So sad that we couldn't see JJS merman in action, with full tail, bare chest and all. He could've reconnected with his squid buddies.

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HAHAHAHA, how's THAT for a nod to JI? ?

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I am loving the Chung is wising up more. While I do think the clueless act is adorable, she really needs to understand what she is giving up and how it will affect her. Glad that cameo by Jo Jung-seok gave our mermaid a chance to grow up and also talk out what she is feeling. She can't be honest with anyone so I'm sure she has been needing that shoulder to lean on. And I don't think Joon-jae will be upset with Chung regarding her being a mermaid. I'm glad she mentioned she has secrets that she can't share. Even though he doesn't know exactly what they are, I believe that with make a difference when he finds out the truth. And tbh I think he will accept her. I mean, Chung is a sweetheart but look at her. She is clueless. And he is already head over heels, ok?

And I am so freaking glad it seems like the mermaids can kiss without erasing memories. I was really worried about that. It would be mad annoying if every time Chung and Joon-jae kissed, they had to reset the relationship. If I was Chung, I would just jump back into the sea rather than dealing with that!

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I'm glad that she seems to be maturing too. And that she knows that the choices she makes on land have real consequences. It makes her love for Joon Jae, while inevitable via mermaids' ability to only love once, still feel like an actual choice.

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The time bending concept us awsom i hope this drama ll get mire ratings in near future
good luck mermaid u can beat decendent of the sun

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Gosh, JB, beautiful recap.

It made sense to me that Dam Ryeong didn't want to lose the memories the second time, but I wondered if he ended up dying because they proved too painful to live with in the end.

Maybe it's just me but it seemed like a lovely touch that as Chung sat at the riverside pondering whether to leave, from the back (which they took care to show us) she resembled the famous Little Mermaid statue in Copenhagen.

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When she got out of the pool early in this episode she was in completely different clothes than at the end of the previous just before she got in.

Product Placement Fairy special delivery ?

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Oh thank GOD that a mermaid's kiss doesn't always cause memory loss, because if so then we (at least me) will be missing out on those kissing scene LMH's lips are so good at.

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Jjh can wear anything and looks beautiful....
I love the library scene.! :-)

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Joon Jae's "everybody must ring the doorbell before entering" was the sweetest. And "make some noise to announce your presence."

I momentarily forgot the consequences of mermaid kissing and assumed Joon Jae was going to kiss Chung after his confession. After all, it is episode 8 and all episode 8's feature a kiss. Indeed, Legend of the Blue Sea is no different, but the kiss was between their Joseon doppelgangers.

Thanks for the recap, javabeans!

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OMO, I was thinking about this same thing.

Like most of the 20-episode dramas that I have seen featured a kiss in the 8th episode.

I want to know what the consequence of the kiss in the Joseon would be because I really don't want to see an unhappy kind of kiss that could result in amnesia. :(

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Dont leave him:(

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No more merman? Really?

Usually they caption a thank you to the cameo. Like _ "We thank Jo Jung Seok for his appearance" - don't know if there was one here.

I hope there is a twist somewhere.

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There was a message at the end of the episode thanking Jo Jungseok and Jung Yoomi for the cameo. I don't want to believe it but I guess he's not coming back. :(

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Great episode. Wish this drama was 1.5 hours like Goblin! This 6 day break in-between makes the wait so hard :( I wonder if Dam Ryeong and Joon Jae will escape the fate of dying at 27 this time around...

Jeon Ji Hyun is very well-versed in her acting skills. I agree w/ above that in the beginning her character was very flawed with the lack of awareness, but now we can see her growing in terms of how mermaids survive in the "real" world, and also her love for Joon Jae.

Joon Jae <3 CHUNG :D

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That beautiful OST at the end is Lee Sun Hee's, isn't it?

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I thought it is her too . I can't wait for them to release it !

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RIP, Mr. Merman. You're the best.

My mom was crying near the end of this episode so I teased her with a plastic bag.

I should start carrying one. You never know, they might become pearls.... I wish!

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The only thing that could have made Jo Jung Seok's cameo better was if the ex-love was played by Gong Hyo-Jin. Then not only would my broken Jealousy Incarnate ship have had a weak candle lit again, it would also have meant Jung-Won was a merman.

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Lol Hwa-Shin. Not Jung-won.

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Waah....i love joon jae and his antics toward chung....love lee min ho...sooo handsome ..and loooove all his wardrobe it makes him more beautiful...love how the writer deliver and connect the story in the past n present.....this drama is my cracks..love to read all comments in this site....warm and exciting....love u all....

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That ending kiss was really bad, even the kids did a better job. Is it because JJH is married now?
On the other hand Ma Dong Suk scares the hell out of me. The actor playing him gives me the chills. The step-mom and her son too, something really feels wrong.

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Agree!! I hope its because its the story set in the past...it was very unrealistic, not what you would expect from LMH :)

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And why does he have to wear makeup? That's why I like Han Suk Jin because he doesn't seem to wear makeup or even if he does, it's not visible.

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Hmm, have you seen JJH kiss scenes in YFAS? She was married then too.

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I believe it wouldn't have been appropriate for them to kiss full on in this scene. The actors may have agreed that simply lip touching was the best kiss for this scene, especially because the relationship between DR and SH is a sweet and sacred relationship. It maintains the specialness and bittersweetness of their relationship.

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I agree. The kiss is awful...or perhaps because JJS and GHJ kiss in JI was too good that I have been setting my expectation too high.

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Incompetent police officers irritate me. I just don't get why they didn't get out of the car to look at the guy that had bumped into their car. They have Dae-young's description right?? At the very least they should have tried to ask him if he had seen anyone suspicious in the area what with him being a worker in the neighbourhood. I hate it when they make the police dumb for plot advancement. Dae-young isn't even being that smart about things so the fact that they keep missing him is a little silly

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The cops on this show are extra-incompetent.

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While I was making my sister watch I Hear Your Voice with me (my 4th time watching that one), I was reminded of the incompetent police comments on DB. And now I see we will have new fodder for the same issue. Okay, let's do this!

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At the very least they should have tried to ask him if he had seen anyone suspicious in the area

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I wish Joon Jae and Chung got more screen time...

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I have a feeling that Shim Cheong isn't a reincarnation of Se Hwa, instead she's Se Hwa herself.

Mermaid's kiss can erase someone's memory but what if they can lose memory too when they are being kissed by humans? Like what Dam Ryung did to Se Hwa.

Maybe mermaids have an age limit so they stay young like that for thousand years lol idek what im talking about, don't mind me lol

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It would make sense but we've seen Cheong find the bracelet in a wreck so different mermaid. Dam Ryung would have been on that ship so she would have know or was already dead.

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Good point. Also Se Hwa and Shim Cheong are different colors for their scales.

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Aaand, there is the answer to one of my questions last episode. I was happier thinking our mermen had cheated dead.

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Maybe he could come back as a different merman.

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I actually just binged most of this drama this week so I think this is the first recap I have actually popped into that's recent. I could make SO many Westworld allusions about the 2 timelines (but I'll forbear due to them being WW spoilers).

Overall I have really enjoyed the humor in the show. I'm very curious about the older brother (I'm confused how he's older, is he a step brother or is he an illegitimate child and the dad married his mom?) The thing is, he's definitely shady and manipulative. But I can't tell if he's evil or not. Like, is he shadowing his mom out of curiosity or does he think she's doing something really wrong he needs to stop?

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He is a step brother. Remember Joon Jae makes a point out of the fact that he's dad's real son, not just pretending to be. Incidentally, I wonder if the show is trying to make a point that what makes a son isn't blook but behavior.

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Thanks javabeans for the recap and insightful review!

Am loving how the show uses the romance to show the growth of Joon Jae. Underneath all the humour, there's such depth in how the relationship is being developed.

As we've seen about Joon Jae, he's always in denial about his feelings; he's afraid to love, because he doesn't want to get disappointed. In this episode though, we start to see him gradually come to terms with it and it becomes increasingly obvious to him that he is attracted to her. In the end, his declaration that he has a plan to like her seems like a far cry from actually "loving" her, but it's already a big step ahead for him.

While Sim Chung is hiding her mermaid identity from Joon Jae, Joon Jae is also hiding his identity from her - he's not honest about his feelings, he lies about his occupation and in general, he doesn't share about his family history. He has just as many deep dark secrets as Sim Chung has.

Also, while Sim Chung requires Joon Jae's love to keep her alive and "unharden" her heart, Joon Jae's heart is also similarly softened by Sim Chung's presence. As all his usual defences are taken down and we see that he displays care for her which is uncharacteristic of him. More of my thoughts on this episode are on my website.

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Ah.... this episode were so sad and of course JJS's death so heart broking
Anyway thanks for the recap

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Do anyone here knows the title of the new OST? The one playing at the end when cheong and joon jae met. Thank you!

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I believe it's Someday Sometime by Sung Si Kyung :)

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Also, did anyone else notice Chung's changing hair color? It used to be completely black then it kind of had brown highlights. One time she had really noticeable brown color on her hair ends. Is it something to ponder on or am I just crazy?

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I wish they had given a bit more screen time for the present day main lead couple... beautiful drama....thank you all for the good work! Saranghae!♥

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I have never seen JJS previously and he is probably a great actor but this cameo of him is just okay, nothing extra special. I watched him thrice in Ep. 7 to see the excitement posters have for him in this cameo. There were funny parts when he kept reminding SC to use the plastic bag when she shed tears in Ep 8 and crying into the plastic bag in Ep 7. He said it in a matter of fact way and to us that is funny. However, I thought LMH was excellent in Episode 7 and 8 as KDR and as the jealous HJJ and when he worried about SC at the end of the episode, he nailed it in both comedy, and angst situations. I don't see that he is not up to JJS standards and he has that extra charisma too. So when some posters say that it is JJH carrying the show, I disagree, LMH is holding his own. Actually, during the Joseon period, JJH role is pretty subdued and it is LMH who stands out. During the modern day, JJH also shines as does LMH. The chemistry is with LMH and JJH not JJS and JJH in this drama. The chemistry with the two leads as someone else commented is different in the Joseon and modern day period but both just as perfect.

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Thank you! I was restraining from saying anything so thank you for writing out all my thoughts. Also, I'd like to say, knetz are actually enjoying Lee Min Ho as Heo Joon Jae and Kim Dam Ryung. I've seen various articles and tons of comments complimenting him on his ability to portray two separate characters so well!

Don't get me wrong, JJH and JJS are awesome too. But Lee Min Ho seems to be under appreciated for his acting. People just don't seem to like giving credit where it is due.

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Lee Min-ho has been solid in his Joseon scenes so far, but that kiss at the end of episode 8 was pretty bad.

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Hahahaha, it was quite bad. I flipped my tables because I know he's usually very good at kiss scenes! So what happened? Lol. I was screaming, give me a better kiss! But I concluded that the kiss scene is most appropriate being a mere lip touching kiss. Still, some of the angles were horrible. I'm waiting for a better kiss.

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I also think the psychiatrist is a bit too interested in knowing Joon-Jae's subconscious... doesn't he have the same face as the old Joseon man with mermaid lore? The one that seems in cahoots in Lord of Ugly Teeth?

A more frivolous point. Who else had this reaction when Joon-Jae was hit with a chair: 'Don't hurt Gu Jun Pyo!'

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You made me laugh twice with your comment that I had to make sure I will not just lurk today though I'm really really sleepy.

Lord of Ugly Teeth and the chair smashes to Gu Jun Pyo. You're a genius!

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When LMH was in the chair, I kept having flashbacks to HJM with hyun bin and hJm. shudder

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Yes!
Omg I honestly didn't like that scene. It was unnecessary. the professor seemed a little too keen and sinister though

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Anyone who loves the part where cheong jumps on JJ bed and says straight up "when are u going to love me?" " yeah I know you don't now but when do you think you will?"
And JJ is like "what?..,"
It's freaking hilarious
I get javabeans comments - for the past episodes I tot she was funny silly but can't help to think she's pretty dumb (was sad to say that the drama's best interpretation of mermaids are that they are not a very smart species)
But having the cameo by merman and setting it straight - it's not the species that's dumb, it's mainly character driven. It's just her naviety and simple mindedness
With a different perspective- I now find her endearing and can relate more to her "lunacy" if you put it.

I will never tire of those scenes where JJ just don't know where or why he keeps losing in his arguments with cheong. It's like he lost his marbles around her and it's so awesome hahahaha

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Golly Gosh. Finally...an ep that made me cry! Huhuhuhu!

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Thanks for the recap, JB!

A lot of things packed in this ep that I liked. It's so funny seeing JJ constantly being thrown off by Chung. His delayed reaction and WHAT?!?! and usually losing always make me laugh. He keep establishing new rules for her sake, such as the curfew and doorbell ringing. LOL

JJS's cameo was the best ever and so sad when he had to exit from the screen. I'm glad that he taught her how to navigate in this world more, from earning money with pearls to detecting that people are lying. So sweet of him to leave behind the pink pearl ring for his girl. But then that conversation between the girl and Chung is giving her second thoughts about sticking around JJ.

SA is still annoying to me and I just LOLed when she was declaring that she'd treat JJ's mom so well. Right... I don't like her and ND always talking about JJ. ND obviously has something up his sleeve all the time. First, he got the analysis of Chung's fracture reports, and I'd bet he's gonna do the same with that pearl soon.

The professor that JJ consulted seems to know what to do to tap into JJ's subconsciousness. I hope JJ will not just think those are illusions, especially now that he got a full-on glimpse of SH's face.

The switching between Joseon and current times is interesting now that it seems the dream or vision experience is working both ways. It's not just DR thinking of his future self, but also JJ thinking of his past self. The library scene was so funny and sweet with how much Chung enjoys whispering with JJ. Keke~

The fighting between JJ and DY had me on edge. I knew that JJ was gonna get a shock from recognizing DY's face. I'm glad he trusted his instincts and got those cabs to act like cop cars. And what touched me the most was that all the while, he was still so concerned about Chung's safety and went to see her despite his own injuries. That already shows how much he cares about her and I hope he has realized this himself. (Was it just me that became fearful DY might have killed off that drunk dude who threw down his cigarette butt?)

I hope CH will be good and find the evidence that Manager Nam was almost killed because of his mom.

I was anticipating a kiss, just not that it'd be the Joseon times. I'm glad that DR wants SH to let him retain his memories. It's so painful that the mermaid has to keep all those precious and sad memories to herself. It also hurt to see Chung contemplating her time here earlier on when she was reading The Little Mermaid.

Anyway, can't wait for next week when we see more of the main couple's relationship deepening.

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I love this episode. specially dam ryung n se - hwa part.when dam ryung put jade bracelet on se- hwa hand,the background music ,the way he watching se- hwa ,omg it makes that scene perfect n heart touching.
Both actors are outstanding ,no need to say.a unique storyline.i want happy ending for TLOTBS plssssssss .love u lmh n jjh.

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