Temperature of Love: Episodes 3-4
Despite Hyun-soo’s initial misgivings and Jung-sun’s attempts to respect her wishes, this seemingly mismatched pair can’t seem to stay away from each other. The heart wants what the heart wants, as the saying goes, but their romance won’t be so simple. Complications already threaten them both, and it remains to be seen whether they’ll become stronger for it, or let life tear them apart.
EPISODE 3 RECAP
As Jung-sun pulls Hyun-soo away from the bus stop, she asks that they not hold hands, and he says that he thought she didn’t see him as a man. Hyun-soo asks if he’s upset that she rejected him, and he admits that of course he is. Hyun-soo marvels at the way Jung-sun talks back, and he counters that she never lets him win once.
He lets her know that he doesn’t cling to a woman once she’s rejected him, and she has to admit that she likes that about him. He leads her to the park, where he takes her cell phone and turns on some classical music.
He starts dancing in place, adorably prodding Hyun-soo to practice the dance she wants to do here when she wins a writing contest. She refuses, embarrassed but amused by his silliness.
Later, they reach their neighborhood, where they split up to head to their respective homes. Hyun-soo thanks Jung-sun, but she falters when he asks what she’s thankful for, admitting that she’s not sure. As he heads home, she calls after him that it’s because he consoled her tonight.
Hyun-soo’s sister Hyun-yi wakes her the following morning with kicks and insults, demanding that Hyun-soo make her breakfast since she pays the bills. And then later as Hyun-soo is taking out the garbage, Hyun-yi bumps into her and snaps at her in horror for getting trash on her.
Tired of putting up with abuse from her younger sister, Hyun-soo grabs Hyun-yi by the hair to deliver a long-overdue beating, making sure to be a public embarrassment because that’s what Hyun-yi hates most. Conscious of the growing crowd, Hyun-yi begs Hyun-soo to stop, but when she doesn’t, Hyun-yi grabs her and it’s on.
The sisters grapple in the street until Hyun-yi trips and falls, right into the pile of trash. Hyun-soo yells that she doesn’t care what anyone thinks because she has nothing to lose… then hides her face in horror when she sees Jung-sun watching from just a few feet away. Oh, that is so embarrassing.
She collects her wits and politely introduces her sister, who’s still sitting in the garbage, makeup streaking down her face. Jung-sun says they show affection roughly, so Hyun-soo drags Hyun-yi to her feet to prove how very much they love each other. PFFT.
At the restaurant, the cranky sous chef points out that Jung-sun is short on halibut for his special, but Jung-sun has a quick answer for every potential problem, annoying the sous chef even more. A server runs in with a gift for Jung-sun from a VVIP customer, and the whole kitchen gasps when the gift turns out to be a large box of extremely expensive black truffles.
Jung-sun repacks the truffles and runs outside to return them to the giver, Jung-woo, saying that the gift is too extravagant. Jung-woo argues that the truffles are a token of his appreciation as a fan, and when Jung-sun still refuses them, he asks if Jung-sun is afraid to be loved.
Jung-woo tries to explain why he wants to give Jung-sun the gift, and they’re both entertained when everything he says sounds like a pick-up line. They end up bantering back and forth, mostly about Jung-sun’s unusual last name (Ohn) and his extensive knowledge of his family tree, until Jung-woo asks if Jung-sun is telling him so much about himself because he likes him.
Jung-sun says that Jung-woo is weird, and Jung-woo agrees, then directs Jung-sun to look at the name on the business card he gave him. He’s named his new production company “On Entertainment,” and he explains that he chose the name because it means to be awake and alert.
He says that when he learned that Jung-sun’s family name is Ohn, he felt like he’d lost to him. Out of the blue, he offers to finance a restaurant if Jung-sun wants to open one, but Jung-sun politely declines. Jung-woo asks him to at least take the truffles, and since he likes the guy, Jung-sun accepts them.
After service is over, the sous chef orders Jung-sun to make more potato puree, which is usually the maknae’s job. Jung-sun starts to argue, but his friend Won-joon enters the kitchen and sizes up the situation. He says he’s a doctor and expresses extreme concern over the sous chef’s health, making the sous chef run off to get a check-up immediately.
Hyun-soo’s assistant PD friend Joon-ha intercepts her on her way in to work, saying that they cancelled shooting their drama today. The director meets with Hyun-soo’s boss, Writer Park, unhappy with the violent way she’s depicting the hero, which alters the entire message of the drama. Embarrassed, Writer Park agrees to change the script.
Won-joon is impressed with Jung-sun’s knife skills, so of course Jung-sun shows off and cuts himself. Won-joon pitches in to help, admitting that he originally wanted to be a chef, but his father made him become a doctor. Jung-sun tells Won-joon to follow his dream, whether it’s to be a chef, or to make his father’s dream come true, and ends up in a playful headlock for his trouble.
Hyun-soo’s friend Hong-ah spends her day at a restaurant trying to write, but she struggles with writer’s block. She’s annoyed when a man sends a drink to her table and sits down uninvited, seeing her writing and offering to introduce her to a relative who works at a TV station.
Hong-ah slams her laptop closed and stands to leave, but the guy implies that she’s a tease, claiming that she flirted with him first. Offended, Hong-ah throws the drink he sent at him and makes a triumphant exit.
After the director leaves, Hyun-soo waits for Writer Park in the hallway, who tries to save face by insisting that she was totally going to say everything the director said; he just said it first.
Hong-ah joins them and jokes that Writer Park works Hyun-soo so hard that she never sees her friend. Writer Park takes it the wrong way, assuming that Hyun-soo has been complaining about her. She says pointedly that she trusted Hong-ah when she recommended Hyun-soo for the assistant writer job.
Thankfully, Hong-ah manages to compliment Writer Park into a better mood. Once she’s gone, Hong-ah tells Hyun-soo to just endure it, since there’s nowhere to go if she’s fired from an assistant writer’s job.
To blow off steam, Hyun-soo and Hong-ah go for a joyride in Hong-ah’s convertible, Hyun-soo hanging out the open top and singing along to Girls’ Generation’s Twinkle at the top of her lungs. After they settle down, Hong-ah admits that the lawyer she’s dating is stressing her out. Hyun-soo tells Hong-ah that she thinks too much, which Hong-ah says is the reason she wants to be a writer. Hyun-soo is envious that Hong-ah’s wealthy family happens to respect writers.
When Hong-ah drops her off at home, she runs out to give Hyun-soo a big hug, and little sister Hyun-yi rolls her eyes and snarls at them, in a bad mood as usual.
At home, Hyun-soo finds a package on the table, but it’s been delivered to the wrong address. It was supposed to go to Jung-sun’s place, so rather than send it back through the mail, Hyun-soo decides to take it to him personally.
Jung-sun is at home, hoping for a reply from the famous French chef Alain Passard, whom he emailed recently. He’s disappointed, though he gets a chat message from Hong-ah asking his address. For a guy who claims that he can’t afford a cell phone, Jung-sun’s apartment is pretty darn fancy.
Hyun-soo makes her way to Jung-sun’s place, where she finds him waiting in the street for her. She drops off the package and turns to go, but Jung-sun calls after her that he’d like to make her something to eat.
She declines, so he teases that she’d probably feel pressured since she sees him as a man, which has Hyun-soo marching back, laughing at his cheek. But it works, and Jung-sun gets Hyun-soo to come up to his balcony. She’s curious about what’s in the package, so he shows her that it contains spices from France.
In his dark office, Jung-woo talks to someone on the phone in Japanese. They’re discussing someone, and Jung-woo says that they’re good-looking, but they have no charm and aren’t fit for their group. The person on the other line says he’ll keep looking for candidates.
After they hang up, Jung-woo tells himself that this is a new beginning, and that he’ll win, because he always wins. He takes out a pocket watch with an antique car on the case, flipping it open and closed contemplatively.
Jung-sun carefully slices one of the truffles that Jung-woo gave to him, explaining to Hyun-soo that they’re very rare. She asks him how much he makes per month, honestly revealing her own (very low) salary, and she pouts when the number he rattles off is nearly twice what she makes.
She notes that his apartment is much too nice for what he earns, but he says that he spends everything he makes and doesn’t save. He tells her that he’s been taking care of himself since his parents divorced when he was fifteen, and she lets the subject drop.
Hyun-soo tries a bite of truffle, and he anticipates her disappointed reaction (they’re sort of earthy). She laughs at herself when he explains that they don’t taste like much by themselves, but when he puts some on a piece of bread with cheese, Hyun-soo finally appreciates the taste.
A older couple strolls down the alley hand-in-hand, reminiscing about their dating days. The wife offers to remind her husband how things used to be, dragging him to a wall and sliding her arms around his neck. She pulls him in for a sexy kiss, but they quickly find themselves getting rained on.
They look up to see a woman standing at her window with her watering can, and she yells at the wife, assuming she’s seducing someone else’s husband, HA. The couple insists that they’re married, but the woman doesn’t believe them and chases them off with more water.
EPISODE 4 RECAP
Jung-sun walks a very tipsy Hyun-soo home, and on the way she trips over her own feet again. Jung-sun asks if she’s drunk, but she cutely slurs that she falls all the time. She recounts the saying that you might as well rest if you’ve fallen, and considers lying down in the street. Jung-sun asks if she’s flirting with him, which succeeds in getting her back on her feet right away.
She insists indignantly that she’s never flirted in her life, but Jung-sun says that she may have just been hiding that side of herself. Hyun-soo accuses him of speaking like an old man, telling him to act his age, so he complies by calling her “noona.” She doesn’t like that either, saying that it makes her feel old.
Jung-sun switches to calling her “Hyun-soo-ya,” but she laughingly shuts that down as well. She tells him to call her “Hyun-soo-sshi,” which is familiar but not too familiar.
On a roll, Jung-sun asks for Hyun-soo’s number. She relents, saying that she’d give it to him, but she hasn’t got a pen. He says he’ll memorize it. They stand there smiling at each other, as if acknowledging that they’ve crossed some sort of threshold together.
Hyun-soo arrives home to find her parents there—HAHA, they’re the couple that was making out in the alley. Even Hyun-yi is laughing, sorry she missed her parents getting soaked, and Hyun-soo guesses that they got caught kissing. Mom tells her daughters that they should be happy to have parents who love each other, making them cringe at their overt displays of affection.
Jung-sun grins his way through his workout the next morning, while Hyun-soo turns on some music to help herself wake up. She bops around the living room until Hyun-yi bellows at her to turn the music off. On his way to work, Jung-sun stops at a phone booth to call Hyun-soo and invite her to eat with him, and she says that she wants to interview him.
Hyun-soo meekly asks Writer Park for the day off, who reluctantly says she can go. She waits for Jung-sun at the bus terminal, dolled up in a pretty red dress, and she nearly jumps out of her skin when she finds him standing just inches behind her, admiring her. Ha.
She’s surprised to learn that they’re going all the way to Beolgyo just for cockles, so Jung-sun explains that he likes to eat food in the place that it’s from. On the bus, Hyun-soo offers to share her snacks, and although he says he doesn’t care for them, Jung-sun takes some to be polite.
Hyun-soo sighs and says she’s happy, enjoying the ride and her first day of rest since becoming an assistant writer. She asks him if there’s anything special about a man who eats rare steak, which is what she plans to title her next project, and asks him to think about it.
When they arrive at their destination, Hyun-soo twirls with happiness at the beauty of the place, then trips over her own feet again. Jung-sun catches her and says to be careful, and they head to the restaurant for dinner.
Hyun-soo is mystified by the way Jung-sun wafts the scent of their soup towards himself before eating, but she gives it a try and admits that it makes the food taste better. After dinner they want to visit some art galleries, but they’re all closed.
They settle for a tea shop, where Hyun-soo asks Jung-sun again if he’s thought of anything unique about men who eat their steaks rare. He says it’s more about preference than personality, which has her grumbling that he’s being difficult, because she needs personality traits for her character. He tells her to be more creative with her story ideas instead of trying to change facts.
They head back to the bus station, but the drivers happen to be striking that night and the buses aren’t running. Their only option is to take the train back to Seoul, but they can’t reserve tickets over the phone. Jung-sun leads Hyun-soo somewhere, and she grows wary when she sees that they’re surrounded by motels and drunk people. He doesn’t say anything, but finally leads her into an internet cafe and reserves tickets for the last train.
He takes an extra minute to check his email, telling Hyun-soo that he applied to be an intern at Alain Passard’s restaurant and he’s waiting for an answer. She asks if that means he’d go to France, and he says that he’s going to France even if he doesn’t get the job, because he hasn’t finished his schooling. There’s no email, which makes him sad and her happy.
They run to the train platform, smiling wide as they run side by side, and make it onboard just in time. Jung-sun falls asleep on the train, and he wakes to find Hyun-soo gone. Worried, he goes looking for her, eventually finding her in the compartment between cars, enjoying the view. She says again that she’s happy, and Jung-sun decides that it’s easy to make Hyun-soo happy.
She doesn’t answer, and the train lurches, causing Jung-sun to catch himself so he doesn’t crash into Hyun-soo. The closeness makes them even more aware of each other, but Jung-sun backs up respectfully.
Hyun-soo says that it wasn’t Jung-sun who made her happy—she chooses to be happy on her own, and given the same events, the way she accepts them is what determines how she feels. Jung-sun replies that he’s going to take her advice to act his age, because he’s usually serious and responsible. But he decides that today he wants to act like a 23-year-old, so he tells Hyun-soo, “I want to kiss you.”
He asks if he needs to take responsibility for a kiss. With a smile, she tells him no, and he says that he doesn’t know if what he’s feeling is love.
Hyun-soo says that with honesty like that, he’ll never get a woman to kiss him, because women like to fantasize that men kiss them because they’re in love. Jung-sun just puts his hand on the wall behind her head and tells her that she can avoid the kiss if she wants.
Hyun-soo doesn’t avoid him, and she lets him kiss her. It’s tentative and sweet, a perfect first kiss, then Jung-sun pulls back to gauge her reaction. When she doesn’t move away, he touches her lip softly and cups her face in his hand. He kisses her again, and this time he doesn’t stop.
Jung-sun is all smiles as he walks home later that night, but his smile fades in an instant when he sees his mother waiting at his building with her luggage. He’s unhappy to see her, his expression wary as she says she missed him and thanks him for always protecting her.
Her words dredge up an unhappy memory of a time when Jung-sun was a teenager and his parents were still together. His father had complained about dinner, whacking Jung-sun’s mother in the head with his spoon over and over.
Finally Jung-sun had grabbed his father’s arm, stopping the abuse. That was the moment that his mother had said that she wanted a divorce.
In the present, Jung-sun doesn’t speak a word to his mother; he just gives her a room to sleep in and leaves. She says to the empty room that she knows he’s mad, but she’s still his mother, so she’ll be understanding.
The next morning, Hyun-soo’s coworkers are surprised when she shows up at work, because Writer Park told them that she quit. Hyun-soo is shocked when Writer Park says that when Hyun-soo asked for the day off, that she was actually quitting, because she was showing her lack of commitment.
In her tirade, Writer Park inadvertently reveals the real reason she’s turned on Hyun-soo—because the drama director voiced the same objections that Hyun-soo had expressed about her script. She accuses Hyun-soo of only pretending to be kind and hardworking, yelling that Hyun-soo will succeed as a writer because evil people like her always survive in this industry.
With tears in her eyes, Hyun-soo tries to defend herself, but Writer Park is having none of it. She kicks Hyun-soo out of her office, though she does promise not to spread any bad rumors about her. Hyun-soo barely manages to get to the privacy of the elevator before she gives in and sobs.
As she makes her way home, her future self narrates that in that moment, she could only think of one thing: that she had to see Jung-sun. As she starts to run down the street, she narrates that it wasn’t until later that she realized that her thinking of him in a moment of desperation—it was love.
Jung-sun wakes to find his mother laying out a lavish breakfast, but he continues to ignore her. Frustrated, she blurts out a demand that he pay her back the money she spent to find him.
He finally speaks, saying that he didn’t ask her to look for him, especially since he’d gotten rid of his phone and disappeared. Suddenly she’s all wide-eyed innocence, but Jung-sun tells her to cut the good mother act.
His mother wails that they’re faaamily, and that they’ll be punished if they separate. Jung-sun spits that he’d rather be punished, because being with her is a punishment in itself. Her hand flies out and slaps him, and though she immediately apologizes, Jung-sun orders her to be out of his house when he gets back.
Mom screams like a madwoman and shoves all the food off the table in a rage. She turns on him angrily, demanding to know who the woman is that turned him into this person, and he screams at her to stop.
She says that she saw how happy he was last night and asks if he loves this woman that much, when he looks at his own mother like she’s disgusting. She sinks to the floor, wailing that she’ll die without him.
Unable to watch this anymore, Jung-sun storms out of the apartment. He runs down the street with one thought on his mind—that he has to see Hyun-soo. He thinks to himself that he knows why he needs to see her so much right now, and he finds the nearest phone booth and dials her number.
At the same time, Hyun-soo is running to Jung-sun, and she makes it all the way to his apartment. She catches her breath and rings his doorbell, unaware that the person inside isn’t him, but his mother.
I love that both Jung-sun and Hyun-soo’s first thoughts when something horrible happens is to run to the other for comfort. It says a lot about how they feel about each other already—even though they don’t have a formal arrangement, they’ve quickly become each other’s person to go to when they need support. But the speed of it also concerns me, because we know this is a flashback and that this phase of their romance won’t last.
They’re already starting out at very different temperatures—Jung-sun is blazing hot, ready to jump right into a relationship without carefully considering if they’re right for each other, while Hyun-soo is much cooler with her rejections and her reluctance to date a man younger than she is. I have a feeling that a lot of that is due to their differing stages in life, since Jung-sun admits to not being very experienced, while Hyun-soo seems very defensive about not wanting to be looked down upon. They’re beginning this relationship at very different places in their personal and professional lives, which affects how they feel, not just about each other, but about themselves and dating in general.
There are so many little red flags that point to this being the wrong time for Jung-sun and Hyun-soo to be together, and I already feel sad for them, knowing that they’re going to fall in love, then suffer a painful breakup. They obviously like each other a lot already, but other than physical attraction and a certain fascination with each other, they’re almost completely incompatible. As I said before, their personalities are polar opposites, but that’s only the beginning.
Right now they find it fun and silly to disagree with each other just to be ornery, their verbal banter a way to feel each other out and get to know each other better. But that tendency to nitpick and fight for the upper hand could become a habit that will cause a lot of hurt when they aren’t playing around anymore. They’re outspoken when they disagree, which is a good thing because it shows that they’re both honest people who don’t hold back what they’re thinking… but again, that can turn nasty once the first bloom of romance wears off. And I’m concerned that Jung-sun might be hiding something important from Hyun-soo, because he seems to be living more lavishly than his modest chef’s salary would allow.
But there’s also a lot that I can see that gives me hope that after they break up and reconnect in the present, they’ll be able to make it work. They’re both decent, motivated people, who have their life priorities firmly in the right place. They obviously just like each other a lot, which in my opinion is just as (or more) important than love and physical attraction. Neither is afraid to speak their mind even when they know the other will disagree, which tells me that they are strong and confident individuals who will fight for their relationship, but won’t allow themselves to lose who they are in the process.
I like the other characters too, though we don’t know nearly as much about them yet. Jung-woo in particular is fascinating, and another example of someone who seems to have two very different sides to him. He comes across as very open and friendly, and he’s generous to a fault without seeming to attach strings to his gifts, but his motives are mysterious. It’s not that strange for someone with gobs of money to decide to start a drama production company, but why is he pursuing Jung-sun? And who was he talking to on the phone about someone being unsuitable for their group? The show has started out relatively simple, but I think that we’re going to find that there’s a lot more going on behind the scenes than we know right now, especially when it comes to Jung-sun’s enigmatic admirer.
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