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Temperature of Love: Episodes 25-26

This week’s episodes have felt like a lot of talk and very little action, so I can only hope that the show is building up to something, and that the pre-emption a few weeks ago is the reason that the timing feels off. At least the talking is productive, as is usual for this show, with battle lines being drawn and declarations of intent being issued. I only worry that not everyone is talking about the right things, and I hope that that doesn’t lead to more problems down the road.

 
EPISODE 25 RECAP

Jung-woo taunts Jung-sun, saying that Jung-sun can’t do anything for Hyun-soo while he can give her everything she wants. He sees Jung-sun’s clenched fist and pushes harder, urging him to punch him if he’s so angry. Against his better judgment, Jung-sun does exactly that.

The punch seems to upset Jung-sun more than Jung-woo, who says that Jung-sun finally seems human after acting so noble until now. Jung-woo leaves, and Jung-sun can’t hold back his angry tears.

When Jung-sun doesn’t come over after talking to Jung-woo, Hyun-soo grows worried. She calls him, sighing in relief when he says he’s at home, and asks if she can come to his place to talk. He’s gotten control of his emotions by the time she arrives, and he teases her for being in such a hurry.

He starts prepping to make soup as Hyun-soo tells him that she and Jung-woo were coming back from a meeting. Jung-sun mentions tightly that she smelled like alcohol, and she starts to explain that Joon-ha didn’t tell her that Jung-woo would be there. But she stops, muttering that she’s just trying to justify it.

In a deceptively casual voice, Jung-sun asks why Hyun-soo came home with Jung-woo if she went there with Joon-ha. He doesn’t answer when Hyun-soo asks if he’s jealous, giving himself away, but Hyun-soo just thinks it’s cute. She says there’s really nothing to tell, and asks what Jung-sun talked to Jung-woo about.

Jung-sun says it was nothing, then he accidentally slices his finger open, making Hyun-soo forget all about her question. She tries to fuss over him, but he pulls away from her and offers to make something simpler to eat. He’s smiling, but Hyun-soo can tell something is wrong.

We see that Jung-woo was bothered by tonight’s confrontation, as he thinks about Jung-sun’s previous faith in their friendship, and how he asked Jung-woo tonight if he even holds any affection for him. He stumbles home alone, remembering his desire to possess Hyun-soo’s faithful heart and her statement today that she doesn’t know if they should work together anymore.

Jung-sun’s behavior is still bothering Hyun-soo the following morning, as she goes for a jog. She ends up in Jung-woo’s office looking for answers, but he snaps that she must not be very smart if she doesn’t know what he and Jung-sun discussed. Hyun-soo replies that his tough attitude is attractive, just not to her.

He muses that she must be nervous if he’s already able to sway them so easily. Hyun-soo says that even if he sways her, she’ll find her way back, but that Jung-sun is different, and asks him to leave Jung-sun alone. Jung-woo calls Jung-sun weak and unstable, wondering out loud why Hyun-soo would fall for a man like that.

Keeping calm, Hyun-soo tells him that she did fall for Jung-sun, not just his appearance, but his spirit. Jung-woo accuses her of being mean, but she points out that being on good terms with both men would make things more difficult. Jung-woo says that she sounds like she thinks she has control over their relationships, but that would only work if he and Jung-sun were strangers.

He dismisses her to go home and work, and that finally makes Hyun-soo’s temper flare. She asks why he’s not trying to make money from her drama, because it’s wrong if he’s only working with her because of his feelings. She states that she won’t leave On Entertainment until she makes money for the company as she promised, so her drama will have a happy ending.

On her way out, Hyun-soo runs into Jung-sun’s mother, who just now learns that Hyun-soo also works for Jung-woo. She goes up to see Jung-woo, and even though she’s told that he’s busy, she barges into his office to ask why he’s letting Good Soup flounder.

He politely refuses to discuss it with her, but he does confirm it when she asks if Hyun-soo also works for him. She asks if there’s something going on between them, but he only smiles placidly and leaves for a meeting.

The Good Soup employees are feeling the pinch, wondering if they should start looking for other jobs. Soo-jung fields a scouting offer, which Min-ho overhears and passes along to the chefs. They in turn tell Won-joon, who looks alarmed.

When Jung-sun gets to work, Soo-jung pulls him aside to ask if he’d rather hire a regular waiter to do her job, and he tells her to take the other offer if it’s better. She says it’s not about going to a better restaurant, and heads back to work. Won-joon tells Jung-sun that she’s probably trying to lower their costs, but Jung-sun sighs that it would be worse to lose her.

Hyun-soo surprises her mother at work to discuss Jung-sun, saying that he’s in love with her. Her mother says that she could tell, but she warns Hyun-soo not to get married just because of her age. Hyun-soo giggles that they won’t get married right now, but she wants Jung-sun to feel assured that her family approves of him.

Mom asks if their relationship is so weak that it needs that, and if Jung-sun’s mother overpowers him. Mom says that Jung-woo likes Hyun-soo too, and that she likes him because he’s stable. She chides Hyun-soo for lacking practicality.

Jung-sun’s mother calls Hyun-soo right then to invite her to tea. Hyun-soo’s mom doesn’t like the way Jung-sun’s mom calls Hyun-soo when she and Jung-sun aren’t even married, but she doesn’t seem truly upset, and Hyun-soo just says that’s his mother’s charm.

Jung-sun’s mother is in a terrible mood, asking Hyun-soo grouchily about her relationship with Jung-woo and how long she’s known him. Hyun-soo says honestly that they’re close, though she admits that she only learned recently that he and Jung-sun are friends. Jung-sun’s mom asks if she’s aware that the guys’ recent fighting is because of her, and she can tell by Hyun-soo’s face that she knows.

Mom says that she feels backstabbed, then she suddenly begins talking about her marriage to Jung-sun’s father. She reveals that his family opposed them because she was two years older, and her husband was only 25. She says they were very much in love, but that he became violent after they were married.

She says that she was lonely and made some new friends, and lost money because of those relationships. Her husband lost trust in her and began having affairs. She calls Jung-sun a flower that bloomed in garbage, and says that she feels bad for him, but she’s too scared to live alone.

She asks if Hyun-soo can handle all that, and she’s surprised when Hyun-soo says that she can, because she loves Jung-sun with the kind of love that only comes once in a lifetime.

The Good Soup team is quiet during their break, so Jung-sun asks lightly if they’re worried about the restaurant. He tells them that worrying is his job, jokingly warning them not to overstep their bounds to lighten the mood a bit.

He meets with Jung-woo later, on a rooftop because Jung-woo likes high places. Jung-sun apologizes for hitting him, saying that the apology is for himself as well, since he’s spent his life suppressing his aggressive side because he didn’t want to live like his father. He blames Jung-woo for shaking up that part of himself.

But he also tells Jung-woo that he respects him and cares, and that he knows Jung-woo being angry at him is really Jung-woo being angry at himself. He says that their friendship is on trial, and that he wants to see it through to the end so that he knows the true nature of those he loves. Jung-woo never says a word, and they part ways in the elevator with one last look.

Hyun-soo returns home to find Joon-ha making ramyun, and he says sheepishly that he feels like this is his home, too. He tells Hyun-soo that Kyung is still asleep, and she asks if Joon-ha likes Kyung, earning a guilty grin.

Joon-ha lets Hyun-soo know that he sent their script to his station, but adds that he’s confused because Jung-woo sent Hong-ah’s script as well, knowing that they can only choose one. He asks her, seriously this time, why she can’t choose to be with Jung-woo and live a comfortable life. He says he loved like her once, but it didn’t last long.

She says she’s still going to try with Jung-sun and see it through to the end before deciding for herself. When Kyung finally wakes, Joon-ha offers her ramyun, but she says primly that she’s going to Good Soup for an interview, where handsome chefs will serve her fine food.

Jung-woo signs a contract with Director Min to work for his company and direct Hong-ah’s drama, and Director Min immediately says that her script needs changes. Ugh, not again. Hong-ah shows up and does exactly as Jung-woo predicted, putting Director Min in his place and informing him that she’ll kill him if he changes her script.

Later at Good Soup, Hong-ah finds Won-joon folding napkins with Soo-jung. Soo-jung stomps off when Hong-ah joins them, and Won-joon also gets up to leave. Hong-ah says that she knows he has a girlfriend now, but objects to his treatment of her after their years of friendship. He just blames his distracted mood on the restaurant’s difficulties. Hong-ah complains that Won-joon, Hyun-soo, Jung-sun, and Kyung are her only friends, but none of them is being supportive right now.

Jung-sun’s mother comes in looking for her son, and Won-joon is surprised when she greets Hong-ah, unaware that they knew each other. Jung-sun’s mother tells Hong-ah out of the blue that on second meeting, she seems like a complicated person and she doesn’t have the energy to talk to her right now.

Jung-sun comes home to find his mother waiting for him in his apartment, and he refuses to acknowledge her questions regarding Jung-woo. He doesn’t speak until she asks if he’s keeping quiet because of Hyun-soo, when he tells his mother that she works for Jung-woo and not to get the wrong idea.

When Hyun-soo arrives, Mom pointedly calls Hyun-soo quite diligent, but with a negative edge. Jung-sun asks his mom to leave, and she yells at him for treating her badly in front of Hyun-soo.

She informs Hyun-soo that she no longer likes her, then grows even more irritated when Hyun-soo maintains her manners. After she leaves, Jung-sun apologizes to Hyun-soo, but she says his mom’s mood changes are honest and cute. Seriously?

At a suggestion from the consultant that they bring in another chef to collaborate on new menu items for Good Soup, Jung-woo has his secretary make a reservation for himself and Chef Song, a three-star Michelin chef. Won-joon gets excited, but Jung-sun feels like something is up.

 
EPISODE 26 RECAP

The guys do their best to impress Chef Song, and Jung-sun waits nervously for the verdict. Chef Song loves the food, so he makes an offer to work on a menu with Jung-sun, which Jung-woo accepts. Won-joon sees Chef Song’s clean plate from a distance and he tells the kitchen that the food was a hit.

Jung-sun is called to the table, but instead of the expected compliments, Chef Song’s mention of helping with the menu has Jung-sun glaring at Jung-woo angrily. In private, Jung-sun objects to letting another chef create part of his menu, since he thinks their differing styles will clash on the plate. He tells Jung-woo firmly that he won’t agree to this.

Jung-woo pushes, saying that the restaurant is losing money because Jung-sun is too emotional. He tells Jung-sun to compromise and launch the menu Chef Song creates, and that the publicity will help. But Jung-sun says that he’ll buy out Jung-woo’s shares instead. Jung-woo reminds Jung-sun that he hasn’t been able to keep the restaurant open on his own, but Jung-sun fires back that Jung-woo hasn’t exactly been that much help.

That night, Jung-sun stands in the dining room of Good Soup, thinking, and the next day he goes to the bank. Despite his father forbidding him to sell the land he inherited from his grandparents, he applies for a loan using the land as collateral.

Joon-ha is called in to see CP Yoo, who tells him to direct Hong-ah’s drama, High Society, because he doesn’t like the idea of Director Min doing a new project so soon. Joon-ha objects, since he’s planning to direct Hyun-soo’s drama, but CP Yoo just says they’ll produce that one at a later time.

Upset, Joon-ha goes straight to Jung-woo, who surprises him by agreeing with CP Yoo’s plan. Joon-ha asks about Hyun-soo’s drama, but we don’t hear Jung-woo’s answer.

Unaware of the change in plans, Hong-ah and Director Min meet up to discuss her drama. But a call from CP Yoo alerts Hong-ah that she’s getting her wish to have Joon-ha direct her show, so she changes tack and tells Director Min that she just wants to get to know him better.

Jung-woo goes to CP Yoo, warning him that Hong-ah and Joon-ha won’t make a good team. CP Yoo suddenly asks if Jung-woo is dating Hyun-soo, but Jung-woo denies the rumor. He looks thoughtful when CP Yoo seems relieved that Jung-woo isn’t mixing business with personal feelings.

As she works on her script, Hong-ah is haunted by Soo-jung’s line, “Let me have this man.” She tells herself to stop changing her mind and snooping around, so she heads to the park, trying to convince herself that she’s happy alone. At one point she weakens and nearly calls Won-joon, but she stops herself.

He’s still at work, and when Hyun-soo and Kyung show up, he tells them sadly that Soo-jung quit. Soo-jung arrives to pick up her things, and Kyung is taken aback at how pretty she looks in her own clothes. She tells Hyun-soo that she didn’t accept another job, then takes her things and leaves.

Won-joon follows her out, upset that she quit without another job lined up, just to lower their labor costs at Good Soup. Soo-jung smiles to see how forlorn he looks, and he asks her to stay. She thinks for a moment, then she hands her things back to him, and they grin at each other happily. So cute.

Over coffee, Kyung tells Hyun-soo what she heard from the other chefs—that Good Soup is struggling financially, and that Jung-woo is threatening to withdraw his investment because Jung-sun won’t let him make any changes. Hyun-soo confronts Won-joon, who caves and tells her that Jung-sun is at the bank looking into a loan.

She’s still there when Jung-sun returns, but he’s too busy to talk. She asks if Jung-woo is being unfair, but Jung-sun admits that business-wise, Jung-woo is doing what’s right. He tells her not to worry, that he and Jung-woo have a relationship apart from her, and she relaxes.

Later, Jung-woo calls Hyun-soo and Joon-ha to his office, where Joon-ha vehemently objects to working on Hong-ah’s drama. Hyun-soo upsets him further by agreeing to do whatever the higher-ups decide, even if it means her drama doesn’t air for a while.

Jung-woo says that in that case, he’ll put Joon-ha on Hong-ah’s show, causing Joon-ha to storm out angrily. On her way out, Hyun-soo starts to ask Jung-woo about Good Soup, but she stops herself.

Jung-sun uses the excuse that Hyun-soo hasn’t interviewed him yet to talk her into going grocery shopping with him. He sets her loose in the store, buying her everything she wants, and Hyun-soo is thrilled to be doing something so mundane and normal together.

As they leave, they each try to carry the heaviest bag, dropping it in the process. Jung-sun snaps at Hyun-soo, momentarily showing the frustration he’s been trying to hide, but he quickly apologizes.

On another day, Jung-sun receives his land appraisal, and Won-joon asks if he truly intends to break his contract with Jung-woo. He asks what they’ll do if Jung-woo refuses, but Jung-sun believes that as a businessman, Jung-woo will see the wisdom in letting them buy him out.

But Won-joon reminds Jung-sun that Jung-woo has one very compelling reason not to agree: Hyun-soo. He says that if Jung-woo lets Jung-sun go, he can no longer control him, but Jung-sun doesn’t think Jung-woo will go that far. He adds that if Jung-woo turns out to be that kind of person, it’ll actually make things easier.

When Jung-sun goes to Jung-woo about breaking their contract, Jung-woo says that at Jung-sun’s age, all he thought about was making money. Jung-sun says that they just have different values, but Jung-woo says with some judgment in his voice that he’s just not desperate enough.

He asks how long Jung-sun thinks he’ll last, and Jung-sun says that regardless, he won’t be coming to Jung-woo for money again. With a heavy sigh, Jung-woo says that he hopes he never has to, because it’s going to hurt Jung-sun’s pride immensely.

He tells Jung-sun that like him, he also didn’t want to live like his father. But he adds that he loved his father, while Jung-sun doesn’t love his. Jung-woo says that Jung-sun doesn’t understand the difference, which is the thing that determines success and failure for a man. Jung-sun counters that he has the love that Jung-woo can’t have, and Jung-woo tells him to leave.

As he turns away, he says something that confuses Jung-sun: “You’ll be back. We don’t want this to drag on and embarrass you.”

Jung-sun finds Daniel and his mother having lunch at Good Soup, but he just bows shortly to Daniel and leaves without a word. Daniel pouts that Jung-sun looks down on him, and that he’s never even invited him to see his home when it’s right upstairs, not that he wants to see it anyway.

Jung-sun’s mother decides to rectify that and takes Daniel upstairs to Jung-sun’s place, unannounced. Daniel asks Jung-sun gently if things are hard at the restaurant, but Jung-sun just says it’s fine. When Daniel mentions that Jung-woo can help, Jung-sun says that he’s no longer connected to Good Soup.

Daniel is surprised, since Jung-woo always helped him with his exhibits. Jung-sun’s mom suddenly looks nervous, and when Jung-sun asks what exactly Jung-woo helped with, she says it’s nothing. Daniel agrees it’s not much… compared to how much he supported him when he was in France. Oh no.

There’s a long silence, then Jung-sun suddenly roars, “MOM!!” She tries to leave, but he grabs her arm, squeezing it painfully as he orders her to tell him if she asked Jung-woo for money. Daniel slinks out like a coward, but Jung-sun doesn’t even notice.

Shaking, he reminds his mother that he said the worst thing she could do to him would be to borrow money from people close to him. She actually blames Jung-sun for her having to go to Jung-woo for money, whining that she wouldn’t have done it if he’d given her money instead. Jung-sun screams, asking what kind of mother ruins her child’s life, but she just wails that this is what she’s like. She tries to calm him down, but he pushes her away and tells her to leave.

Once alone, Jung-sun shakes with rage as tears stream down his cheeks. He finally understands what Jung-woo meant when he said he would be back.

He’s calmer but still stunned when Hyun-soo calls him. Just seeing her name on his phone starts Jung-sun’s tears all over again, and hearing her voice reduces him to wracking sobs. Hyun-soo is horrified to hear him in so much pain, and she rushes to his place as fast as she can.

But when she gets there, he says that everything is fine, no sign of his tears as he goes to the kitchen to make tea. Hyun-soo can tell that something is terribly wrong, and she goes to him and wraps her arms around him, laying her cheek on his back.

“Let’s live together,” she says.

 
COMMENTS

I can fully understand why Jung-sun was crying, and why he blew up at his mother that way. Just when he finally got free of Jung-woo and finally extricated himself from the control that Jung-woo keeps trying to exert over him using his money, he discovers that his mother has made it impossible for him to break free. It’s not bad enough that she stole his inheritance money, or that she’s a constant embarrassment to him, but now she’s locked him into a situation where he can never shake loose of Jung-woo’s clutches. Jung-sun just put up everything he owns as collateral to buy Jung-woo out of his restaurant, so there’s nothing left to pay Jung-woo back the money he gave his mother and Daniel for what sounds like years. The only thing Jung-sun can do is to make Good Soup successful and pay Jung-woo back, but that won’t be easy (not without compromising his standards) or he would have already done it. And even if that somehow magically happens, Jung-woo can still hold his power over his head until Jung-sun pays him back.

I can’t say I’m surprised that Jung-sun is pulling away from Hyun-soo recently, though it’s not for the exact reason I anticipated. I’m really very frustrated with him right now for letting Jung-woo get under his skin in regards to Hyun-soo and his relationship, when he knows that Jung-woo is doing it on purpose. Why is Jung-sun giving Jung-woo exactly what he wants? The problem with a character like Jung-sun is that we don’t easily know what he’s thinking, because he rarely tells us and he’s hard to read. After everything he and Hyun-soo went through to find each other again, and after waiting for so many years, I’m going to be furious if Jung-sun doesn’t put up more of a fight.

I don’t blame him for being afraid of his own anger, not after seeing the sort of father he grew up with and how it damaged his mother (she’s a whackjob all on her own, but being abused for years probably didn’t help). I can understand why Jung-sun does his best to clamp down on his temper when it flares, because he doesn’t want to be like his father. But I’m scared by the way he broke down so thoroughly, then a few minutes later he was back to pretending everything was fine. That’s not healthy, not for Jung-sun or for his relationship with Hyun-soo. He’s going to have to accept that anger is a part of being human, and that it’s not a lack of anger that makes him a better man than his father, but how he directs his anger. Like any weapon, anger can be a very useful tool if you know how to use it.

As for Hyun-soo, I worry that she’s being too naive about the situation, and going about trying to fix things in the wrong way. I think that she’s feeling Jung-sun pulling away and suggested living together as a way to bring them back together, but living together won’t solve the problem of Jung-woo trying to get between them, nor will it fix Jung-sun’s feelings of insecurity or the fact that he’s still under Jung-woo’s financial thumb. I believe that her wanting to move in together could even have the opposite effect, and push Jung-sun even further away by expecting more commitment than he’s ready to give to Hyun-soo right now—not that he doesn’t love her and isn’t committed to her and their relationship, but he’s very literally watching every part of his life fall apart right now. He’s not the type to jump into something like living together lightly even in the best of circumstances, so pushing for it now could get Hyun-soo the exact opposite result from what she’s hoping for as Jung-sun could very well retreat into his previously safe, comfortable isolation.

 
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Jung Woo hanging on the way that he is after (multiple) clear-cut rejections is certainly... new in dramaland? Is this more a battle of pride than love though? This bromance - the way they respond to each other - is sometimes so strange.
Hong Ah's drama - High Society - wasn't that the (disappointing) one with Uee and Park Hyung Sik

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Yup, there was definitely a drama called 'High Society' that disappointed me and starring those two actors. 😏

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They are from the same writer if I am not mistaken?

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If I'm not mistaken, High Society is also penned by this drama's writer 😋

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Thanks LollyPip. It's getting difficult to watch Jung Sun's pain, so I may stick to recaps. I'm wondering what situation can arise that Jung Sun can leverage on or use to help himself with. Maybe Soo Jung who was willing to quit to save the restaurant, is secretly rich enough to help out a bit?

I'm still hoping to see more growth all round for the characters who've still not developed in the last 2 episodes. Come on show, you began so good, bring back the pace!

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GB hi!!!! So you're watching this too? Or was? 😂

Yes it's hard seeing Jung sun suffer, and I kept making these wth faces whenever Jung woo or Hong ah appear lol but I can't stop watching this show. I can't leave my poor baby chef, so I'll stay for him 😊

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Hi there @pastmidnite. Yes, I was really enthusiastic about this show. That's probably why I feel more disappointed that it did not retain its early pace. I find no big fault in the OTP who are sweet together, just that they are not very exciting.

I felt that the show, from the beginning, was making a comment on the truth and lies we may hear or tell or believe. I guess this part still continues in part with some people deceiving themselves that what they do or take is their entitlement. I guess I'm hoping that by the last few episodes, we'll have characters, who have lied, start to take responsibility and to change for the better. 😆

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Yang Se Jong blew me away with that rage and crying scene... At the same time, its painful to watch how suppressive Jung-sun's character is... Poor boy!

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True, it was not just having rage in full throttle mode. Then there is a progression from emotional suppression transitioning into triggered breakdown. I am awed and yet my heart hurts repeatedly (replay), this is one of his best scene in this drama. Not that I expect less from him....

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Thank you for the recap :)

Well it almost went as I was expecting it after the last episodes. JS’s change was expected and I kind of worry for HS since I’m not sure if her way of assuring him is working in the end – I hope so though. Although I don’t agree much with everything that JW is doing to HS and JS to sway their relationship, I’m a little bit relieved that he keeps it at least an ounce professional when it’s about work. The reason why it worked so well for JW and JS’s partnership was because JW was ambitious and organized while JS was passionate. They were making up each other’s weaknesses. Now that they break off – or JS at least trying to break up – it seems that Good Soup is going to have an even more difficult time ahead. I’m angry with his mom on a level where I can’t even explain it in words, but at the same time I can’t help but to feel the friendship that JW had for JS. He was supporting JS’s mom in order to lighten his friends burden. Which makes it even sadder that the recent events are driving those brother by heart apart. Anyways, I really hope that JW will do the right thing in the end and that JS can get over his difficulties and they can be close again. It would be too bad if its breaks apart after all. The last scenes were really impressive. I really liked how the angry, disappointed and devastated JS was portrayed. Kudos to Yang Se Jong!

Hong Ah got lucky I guess. I loved Joon Ha’s reaction when he was “given” to Hong Ah though I cannot complain since it was purely a business decision. I’m not sure what the writer is trying to do here by showing us Hong Ah being all alone, but what irks me the most is actually what she said to WJ: She has no other friends than HS, JS, Kyung and WJ. Like… what? She knows that these are the only people who are good in her life and she still did backstab them, trampled on them and treated them like this? And now she thinks they don’t have a right to cut her, since they are her only friends. I know that this is supposed to make me feel bad for her, but it doesn’t. In contrast it makes me feel more annoyed with her. It seems like she never owns up to anything she did. Even if she is wrong she apologizes half-heartily and tells other people that they were practically at fault as well so it’s not completely her fault… The only way I can accept Hong Ah at the end of this drama is as a friend who sincerely apologizes for her wrongdoings. But she is definitely not the end game for WJ. I said it in the last comment section and I say it again: He is too good for her and he will always be too good for her.
Which brings me to something I hope I didn’t imagine! SooJung and WonJoon. He was wowed by her beauty when she was picking up her clothes, right? :D I know that he has still feelings for Hong Ah but I really hope he can give SooJung a chance. She is actually someone good for him and I think their personalities fit well with each other. Make it happen, show!!

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The way Jung-sun switched from devastation to being seemingly fine has me wondering if maybe he might be bipolar. Like it is hereditary and his mother has shown us that she is bipolar. Speaking of his mother, I don't even want to talk about how useless she is right now. using your son's birthright and then borrowing with your child as collateral has to be the worst thing any kdrama mum has ever done, and that she had the audacity to blame Jung-sun, I can't even deal. As for Jung-woo, I can't deal with that level of stupidity and vindictiveness. What's even more annoying for me is the knowledge that the drama will most likely have everyone forgive him for all past hurts and that will be that (the same with Hong-ha), and that is something that is not realistic, for a drama that tried to give us some realism. If I had a friend that acted that way, I don't care how much they apologize. I won't bear grudges, but nah, that is the end of that friendship. I already spent the last episodes talking about the rock for brains and sense of entitlement that is Jung-woo, and I shall not belabour that point. I do know though that this point bears repeating: all this senseless and needless behaviour is draining.

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My friend and I were watching this last night and she burst into sobs because that scene reminded her of her own toxic mom. In reality some parents can be emotional vampires who just take from their children and expect them to clean their messes. For years my friend has had to practically babysit her mother finances because of a gambling addiction. I wonder if his mom might have an issue similar with money. While this drama is hard to watch due the 2ndleads I really like the otp and hope it ends well.

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I feel for your friend. She might wish to seek out Gam-Anon, the anonymous 12-Step self-help fellowship devoted to assisting relatives and friends of compulsive gamblers. Consider this a public service announcement. ;-)

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I don't think he's bipolar, he's just severely damaged by having to compartmentalize due to his unendingly narcissistic mom.

The kids of narcissists are in a bizarre position of having society actively work against them. If your parent beats you, people are supposed to intervene; it doesn't always happen but it's supposed to. But a narcissist gaslights her kid while not doing anything that would get her in trouble with the police. It's hard to even prove emotional abuse.

Jung Sun has turned all of his emotions inward, he works overtime to control his reactions, he has tried drawing line after line. His mother made him responsible for her welfare as a teenager, then his father did it to him in his early 20s, and now Jung Woo has once again saddled him with responsibility. It's unending.

But if the kid, after years of this sort of emotional whiplash, tries to cut the parent out? Oh, the wails and berating they'll hear! "She's your mom, you only have one!" "Family loves and forgives each other" "How could you be so selfish, she calls me every day missing you!". It's awful. The adult child has made the only decision that will keep him sane, and society turns its full force on him to make him accept the narcissistic parent again. It's awful.

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Thanks for the recaps @lollypip. This is a tough time for fans/viewers of the show so your commitment is greatly appreciated. Recaps help me catch things I missed or don't quite understand. This time it really helped put things in perspective.

If I'm being honest, I didn't put two and two together regarding the gravity of Jung-sun's mom's actions and the anger and breakdown Jung-sun had. When Jung-sun's mom kept on wondering about the health of her son's relationship with Jung-woo, I cannot believe that a simple thing like that didn't click with we. I think one of the most hurtful aspects of this aside from what Jung-sun did to break free of Jung-woo is his mom's excuse of how she can't/couldn't help herself. If her 'uncontrollable' actions affected only herself, then that would be a different story, but this is the second time she has done something like this to her son and it's inexcusable and most likely unforgivable. As a viewer, what sucks is that she was actually a likeable flawed character. Now, even if she manages to extricate Jung-sun somehow, it would take considerable time for that relationship to repair, if ever. I think this fallout also puts how cold he is to his mother into perspective.

I really am worried for out OTP. I understand why Hyun-soo wants to move in. With all the little discussions with her mom and others, and her bigger conversation with Jung-woo, she wants to prove exactly how committed she is to this relationship and that she can make it work. I would also like to think that she wants to be there for Jung-sun given the hard times he's going through. Not that she is fully aware, but Jung-sun has no one--other than maybe Won-joon--to lean on. I don't think either is looking for marriage at this point, and they view relationships differently in that sense. The problem with the move in scenario is Jung-sun. I honestly think he needs counselling. He rarely ever discloses anything to anyone and keeps everything bottled up inside. He needs a place to release and vent. He can't just explode and then act like nothing happened minutes later. I was super surprised that he actually picked up btw. The show is super weird that way where it does things like this differently from what you would expect. The other issue with Hyun-soo's moving in is that the timing is off. It would pose it's problems in good times, but could be even more problematic now if the ending of that grocery shopping scene is any indication.

I'm just hoping that the show continues on the tracks and not completely off it as it was last episode. While this episode does present us with challenges, hopefully we'll get some solutions soon enough.

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I get Hyun Soo on this, though. He compartmentalizes, and she now knows that he reaches for her in times of crisis but in the short time it takes to get to him, he's back under control and pretending nothing's wrong. Her logic here isn't completely off - if she's around all the time, then when he reaches for her, she'll be THERE.

And yes there is every likelihood that it'll get messy and he'll lash out when he can't hide emotion anymore, but I'm not sure she's got the time to wait this out. He's snapping because there are a lot of stressors, but.. I don't know, I think she's not wrong to make this move. She knows she's putting herself in the line of fire, but I think she's doing it intentionally. It's more damaging if he keeps hiding himself from her and pretending emotions don't exist.

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Agreed. This is a really interesting spin on the male lead. There are many damaged male leads out there but they all manage to never truly fall even when things aren't ok. One of the more frustrating ones was Kim Young-Ho from Oh My Venus. He preferred to suffer on his own, and by whatever miracle and rehab, he was as good as new. I remember being really annoyed when Kang Joo-Eun was trying to reach out to him and be there for him but he wasn't having any of it. So if we could get that from Hyun-soo here as you put it, I would appreciate it as well. I like that many beanies and Hyun-soo aren't having any of this benign neglect.

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Just happened to see your comment about Oh My Venus. That part when he pushed her away felt so wrong. It didn't feel like a love story after that.

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@hades,

Thanks for the recaps @lollypip. This is a tough time for fans/viewers of the show so your commitment is greatly appreciated. Recaps help me catch things I missed or don't quite understand. This time it really helped put things in perspective.

Hear, hear! I'm still avidly watching, even if it takes me a while to comment. The show's timing feels off-kilter following the preemption.

I'm in the same boat with you regarding the bombshells that dropped in this week's episodes. In the back of my mind I've been aware that Jung-sun's family of origin royally screwed him up, but I hadn't quite put it together. And then we got the revelations about Narcissistic Mom. No wonder Jung-sun is an uncompromising perfectionist who tries to avoid confrontation. We're getting an eyeful of realistic maladaptive behaviors typical of people who grew up in dysfunctional families. I suspect that is a big reason why so many viewers are frustrated.

A lot of stuff doesn't make sense in real life, either, when issues such as alcoholism, compulsive gambling, mental illness, and other dysfunctions arise in family life. In a way, TEMPERATURE OF LOVE may be an extended public service announcement in the sense that it is pointing out that other parties besides the obvious ones can be seriously affected.

Back to the show. – I recall noticing when Jung-sun said that he was angry at Jung-woo because he could not be angry at Hyun-soo. In retrospect, that was very telling. He had every right to be pissed at the high-handed way she treated him 5 years earlier (i.e., as dismissively as her Mom just spoke about Hyun-soo's love for him. I hope Hyun-soo finally realizes it, too!). But he didn't express anger back then. He retreated and did what he could to salvage his dignity. And soon left for France.

Oddly enough, Jung-woo also said that he could not be angry at Hyun-soo. Don't tell me – he has abandonment issues because Mom died.

I've been trying to understand Jung-woo's mind games with Jung-sun, and it suddenly dawned on me that his father had sent him off to the US to study and make something of himself. Maybe in his own twisted way, he's trying to prod Jung-sun into getting his act together, but I completely fail to detect any warmth or benevolence in his actions. It looks like cold-blooded power plays to me.

Re: Jung-sun's answering Hyun-soo's call, I think he was feeling desperate enough to let her know how he felt, but then slipped back into denial mode. It's second nature to him.

I agree with you re: Hyun-soo's proposal to move in. It's a bad idea, although I understand her reasoning. If anything, Jung-sun needs his own space – and a new door code! And razor wire, too, if it would keep Mom out. He needs counseling – and time. The behaviors that helped him survive in a sick family are no longer serving him well, and need to be replaced.

Bernice Lewis: “Break This Circle”
https://www.youtube...

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Bernice Lewis: “Break This Circle”
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o675D4V9pnU

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The scene where yang se jong broke down was fantastic. I remembered at the beginning of the series thinking that the Jung sun character is too perfect and too unreal, he is always in control and always logical even with regards to romances, relationship and feelings. Now that we have seen his flaw, his way of coping, I can't help but agreeing with Jung woo that he finally looked human. I suppose this is the story arc where jung sun learn to manage his anger, to open up with others when things get tough. It guess it is due to his childhood experience that he always suppress his negative feelings in isolation and not talking to anyone about it. Whenever he is with others, he is always bright and positive, with big smiles and rationale perception. When negativity hits, he would closed himself off and attempt to recover himself from the maelstrom of negative emotions. I am impressed with the scene where in the process of recovering from the rage he had from his mother issue, the phone call from hyun soo that he picked up had triggered him into an emotional mess. He has pent up frustration that was hidden for too long. I am surprised that he actually pick up as I thought he would attempt to close himself off hyun soo when he is hit with the massive negative outburst. The scene is parallel to earlier scene five years ago when hyun soo was crying when receiving jung son's call. He is quick to realise that she is crying as he admit he do that sometimes too, today is one of those days.

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Despite the frustrating the side characters especially the male second lead, the greatest hurdle between the otp lies in themselves, jung sun's insecurity in particular at this point. I think they admit this in the drama a few episodes ago too. At the beginning of the drama, hyun soo was being tested, now at this stage, it is jung sun's turn. Relationships is not a constant state, it is full of trials and tribulations, so that felt real to me.

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For some reason this series is just not doing it for me. It’s got one of the most superficial love story in k drama that I have seen . The 2nd leads act like spoiled brats and entitled idiots . The parents of the leads are completely on the opposite side of spectrum between each other .And the lead heroine wants to bury her head in the sand for everything . I need to specially mention Hong ha . She is the next in line to the worst entitles princess ever after the 2nd lead in Cinderella and 4 knights (oh the horror) The only sane person is Jung sun who is trying to keep me from dropping this series comes letely .
Again what’s the premise of the story?🤷🏻‍♀️Cough*what story* cough

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I agree. I stuck it out until now because I thought there were elements that could make a really good drama, but the characters I want to root for are so one dimensional. The nasty people are more interesting, and I wouldn't mind that, except they are SO nasty (without any explanation as to why, minus mom's history as an abuse victim which doesn't even ring true) that you kind of can't root for them, either.

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I agree. It's no longer doing it for me. Hyun Soo is so spoilt and naive that she's forgotten how Jung Woo has supported her for the 5 years she's been through without Jung Sun, claiming that she's been pining for him the whole time. She's much older than Jung Sun so shouldn't she be more mature?!

Jung Sun is also turning out to be such a brat. In the corporate world, he would have been fired much earlier for heading a fine dining resto not making profits after so long. Begging Jung Won to stick to his 1 year plan and not accepting any changes nor wanting to do ANYTHING for the resto other than to hide in the kitchen and cook (eg no TV appearance) is so self centered. Instead of a beautiful romance, as the series drag along, I am seeing a couple who deserve each other and not Jung Won's help at all.

I see Jung Won as a figure ment of reality vis-a-vis the main leads naivety. He's tough and brutal when he needs to, to knock some sense into 2 people obsessed with each other and spiraling downwards instead of growing together as a couple.

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I still believe deep down JW cares for JS. But how he can bear to treat JS like that is beyond me. All those years of friendship must mean something to him. If only he could have seen JS crying. That scene was heartbreaking.

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I agree. I think Jung Woo does care for Jung Sun, but he still maintains a cold, restrained personality. I don’t think he has ever had a deep love or affection for anyone before.

Jung Sun’s angry outburst scene was so sad and scary.

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I have personally thought for a while that Jung-woo cares about Jung-sun, but that in his mind, there are only three kinds of people in the world; him, people he can control, and people he must work to control. So in my mind, despite his words, Jung-woo sees JS and HS as his favourite man and favourite woman, the two people he is most fond of. But not as best friends, because best friends is achknowledging them as equals (think various sageuks where the crown prince/king is told that a king has no true friends). And now that HS and JS have "banded together" and trying to get away from him and his control, he is trying to get them back, but not necessarily violently, more making them realize themselves that they cannot leave him.

If JW saw JS crying, he would feel bad for him, but I think it would be like teaching a puppy to do commands or not sleep on the bed; it will cry and it will be scared, and you will feel sorry for it and want to give in. But you know that the training is necessary, and in the future will make everything better, so you look the puppy in the eye and think "I'm sorry, you must feel hurt, but this is necessary".

Which is totally insane thinking, but I am starting to really like the idea of a JW who thinks like that, knows that people don't agree but simply does not care. I kind of wish his reasons was not only because he wants HS, but because he wants to break off the "alliance" between them, or something. But if I ignore the actual reason he does it, I'm really intruigued by how he manipulates them.

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That's an interesting way of putting it. You're saying JW is trying to push JS to his limits as he is basically restraining himself from showing his true nature. He's probably the most calm and collected character in dramaland that it's almost unnatural. JW was right in the sense that the punch made him seem more human. On the other hand, I don't think JW's intentions are that noble. This is probably still motivated by HS and him trying to control JS. He must feel some remorse as we were shown scenes of him drinking and reflecting on JS's words. He doesn't seem to have any other friends apart from JS so I don't get why he would throw that friendship away especially since we saw him being so carefree and happy with JS.

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I'm more saying that JW thinks HS and JS are misbehaving because they think two against one will win, and so he hurts them, specifically JS, to retrain them back to being his most fond underlings. So I definetely DON'T think JW's intentions are noble at all, I think he is emotionally abusive, and JS (and HS maybe in future) are the abused victims that want to get away, but emotionally cannot leave him and JW knows it.

And yeah, it does feel like his list of friends is short. As I said, that is because I feel like he does not have any friends, because that means they are equal to him. But HS and JS were as close to friends for him as one could be - they were his "favourite man and woman". That is why I wish his "love" for HS will not be his final reason for acting like this to her and JS, but rather that he is jealous of their love and also want them to be only his, and not each other. He wants loyalty and love HS devotes to JS for himself, just as he wants JS' love and devotion to himself. But we will see if he really IS doing all this simply because he "loves" HS, or if it is for more.

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I really, really like this insight about Jung Woo and how he would view the pain Jung Sun goes through by being a "disobedient puppy." Or that he is like a king, who never really has friends because no one can be his equal. I think you're right.

I also think this show in a lot of ways is about control. I had been feeling slightly exasperated by Jung Sun's insistence on doing everything, every last thing, his own way even if it meant losing his employees, his restaurant, and every last dime. It seemed kind of naive to me.

But it makes sense that a man who has lived through such emotional turmoil, and is determined to never live that way again, would feel the need to control everything in his world. You can see it in the story he tells through his food (as he put it in this episode) and in the painstaking attention to detail in presenting that food. Personally, it would drive me crazy to put together a dish of food with tweezers, the way he does.

And you can see it in how orderly and calm his home and garden are--what a retreat it is for him, and how invaded he felt when his mother and Daniel came by unannounced.

It's somewhat paralleled by Hyun Soo's stance toward her work--but apparently without any trauma in her own life to compel it? Maybe it's just the artistic nature in them both.

But almost everyone in this story is playing out a story about control: Hyun Soo with her writing, Hong Ah with everyone, the moms, certainly Jung Woo, Kyung and annoying ramen producer-houseguest, etc., etc.

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Aw, thank you! :D I am happy that my theory is not too out there. While having an antagonistic second male lead is my guilty pleasure (one of many reasons I love Seven-Days Queen), there are times him being driven by his clearly, talked-about and achknowledged unrequired love just feels weird for the drama it belongs to. So I wanted to try imagining him having other reasons than just wanting HS to be his girlfriend.

That is true, I had not really thought that much about JS' house and garden, and his own need for control in his life. I do feel like they often make the male lead's backstory/motivation always a bit tiny more interesting or emotional than what they do with the female lead at times. Maybe because they expect the audience to immediately relate to the female lead, so they must work harder to make us feel for the male lead? I'm not familiar with K-drama yet to come with good guesses. :P

I think for HS, her need for control is to keep what she always had; she mostly has control over her life and her emotions, even when things do not go well. She has always had some kind of control through life and she works hard to maintain that. JS, meanwhile, works hard to get a control he never had, with a fear that if he loses emotional control he becomes like his father. While JW is just like "who even CARES you both belong to me anyway, stop misbehaving".

...Since we were talking about kings and friendship in sageuk anyway, maybe my scenario with the couple struggling with a lovesick/possessive boss would work better in a sageuk? Since it is easier to suspend disbelief that someone powerful would act irrationally then than now.

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I'm so frustrated. There, I said it. I've been holding myself to just accept whatever's given but I just can't. EVERYONE is frustrating me, and I can't wait for this to be over.
Jungsun is definitely succumbing to Jungwoo way too fast, but as much as he frustrates me, I know he's going to learn a lot from this. Hyunsoo's world was crumbling five years ago, and now it's his turn to experience it. The fear of failing in life, the fear of not making it, the fear of not being able to make your loved ones happy.

I hope Hyunsoo is going to snap out of it soon and really starts solving problems instead of making them worse. I can see Jungwoo's wall crumbling down, but he knows it too and as a result, he rebuilds it three times stronger.

P.S. I hope Wonjoon will never give Hongah another chance.

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I might be alone on this, but I kind of wish that this pressure of being under Jung-woo's financial thumb and feeling like they are captured was more of Hyun-soo's personal plot, and not Jung-sun. Of course with his restaurant it makes more sense that Jung-sun has that story, but I also kind of feel like Hyun-soo being naive and trying to support him in a misguided, short-term way is weird, as well. She is seven years older than him, and part of the reason she kind of ruined their relationship five years ago was because she felt her life experiences made them too different. Now that he is older it is easier, but still, I feel it would follow that point better if it was Hyun-soo struggling and Jung-sun not understanding the problems she was facing, and naively thinking moving together will solve it. It could be that I'm just more interested in watching stories with women in them, though, so even if I'm intrigued I still wish for the genders to be switched.

If Jung-sun is going to be involved with these adult financial, legal and prideful troubles, I don't want Hyun-soo to be naive about it. I want her to show that she is seven years older than him, and even if she cannot help him directly, does have some experiences and contacts that might help him. Or that she is faces with her own crushing troubles as well that he cannot help her with either (or, the twist is that they could have helped each other, but were too insecure to do so). Otherwise, what was the point of her being older than him?

I just don't want the show to be about Jung-sun vs. Jung-woo with Hyun-soo as a "price" while she is shown having her own troubled but relatively unrelated life. "Beautiful Gong-shim" kind of scarred me on that front. I hope they make sure the two of them are protagonists together properly, and not demote Hyun-soo to deutagonist.

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I agree that both of them are naive. Age is but a number. These two should realize that and I hope the writers explain that you can be older and dumb with financial decisions. Case in point, me! lol It doesn't click when you hit a magic number.

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Jung Woo's thing for Hyun Soo was at one point cute, but when he has clearly been rejected and keeps trying to come in between the two, it's just petty. From an outsider I would look at him as someone who is petty and has to much pride. I like that Hyun Soo's character is being written to face him directly, compared to the usual tropes where the character bends to make the one hurt happy (dumb). At this point, I am just interested in how Jung Sun handles this. With his crappy mother and so called friend, I'm hoping he doesn't try to push Hyun Soo away, so that he can miserable on his own (never understood that in dramas).

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So this is just not Jungsun's week...he got called weak 3x to his girlfriend in just ep 25 and then we saw him lose his cool at the end of both hours this week. TBH his character reminds me of someone I know in real life so I am curious to see how the drama is going to develop and mature his character.

There's a lot of nonsense happening on this show though and I'm getting tired and don't have the energy to try to even keep up with the logic/non-logic? of these side characters.

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Jungsun's rage and tears reminded me of Sunghoon in Duel, which I finished only a few weeks ago. Is it too soon to rewatch it?...

I find Yang Sejong's acting to be best when his characters are in turmoil, but seeing his characters in turmoil gives me pain, which shows how good his acting is, but it's hard to watch.

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yup, that seething in anger definitely reminded me of Sung-Hoon....Still bitter about the ending....

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He had to die. He killed too many people. If he'd only killed the chairman maybe he would have gotten a pass. But yeah, I would have loved to see the brothers get their happy ending together.

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There were a few scenes that happened differently than what I expected. I was worried that Hyun Soo would shrink in front of Jung Sun’s mom during their meeting, but I was happy that HS was not intimidated and handled the situation well.

I was a bit surprised, yet glad that Jung Sun answered Hyun Soo’s call instead of avoiding her too. I wanted to see him confide in her and release his pent-up feelings. Let each other know of the good and bad things that are going on. He hasn’t told her much about his family (especially his father) and his past. It was sad to see him completely mask his emotions when she came to his door. Living together will not be the solution and will most likely add to the problem. It’s kinda like Hyun Soo switched places with Jung Sun. He’s the one dealing with career problems and instability while Hyun Soo is trying hard to show that she is there for him and their relationship.

Yang Se Jong’s acting during his breakdown scene was phenomenal.I was holding my breath, worried about how dark he would go.

Won Joon and Soo Jung smiling at each other again made me antsy. He saw her differently after seeing her outside of work. Yes, Soo Jung is a gorgeous woman. He should have already known that. Why did he push her away before? Does he have romantic feelings for her or does he want her back at Good Soup as friends/coworkers?

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@loveblossom It made me anxious watching his breakdown scene, too. I didn't know what to expect from him and how far he was willing to let go and release his frustrations. I was so worried that for a moment, I thought he would pass out from all the emotional exhaustion he was feeling. Wow... YSJ totally sold me with his acting.

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Yang Se Jong, you have my heart.

That was such a painful scene to watch but I'm glad he finally had the chance to let go and just... cry. But I'm worried that it didn't last longer than it should have :( I hope he could find a better way of releasing all his pent-up frustrations.

The show has been showing this the whole time but I think the last two episodes highlighted this fact to me. Jung-sun and Hyun-soo, despite of their differences, are both (really) good people. No matter how shitty they are treated, they still have this unshaken belief that everyone has good in them. The scene where Jung-sun justified Jung-woo's anger towards him and Hyun-soo explaining her fondness to Hong-ah and JS's mother incredibly touched me. I'll keep rooting for the show to witness how things would turn out for our leads <3

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Jung-sun and Hyun-soo, despite of their differences, are both (really) good people. No matter how shitty they are treated, they still have this unshaken belief that everyone has good in them.

Great point. I really want to see them overcome all the problems together.

This show better not have a sad/wtf ending...

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I have faith in them!!! Hyun Soo said that she decided to go with happy ending!

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@loveblossom Oh, dear... /crosses fingers/ I can take the ongoing ~drama~ we're getting from the drama right now but I don't think I can bear it if they end it with a WTF-ending.

Just.Please.No.

I don't want my 2017 to end on a depressing note.

IF... and this is a BIG IF, they decide to end it poorly, I would unleash all my demons and write an entry to this post "[Theme of the Month] Write an alternate ending to a drama whose ending sucked"

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"Hyun-soo’s mom doesn’t like the way Jung-sun’s mom calls Hyun-soo when she and Jung-sun aren’t even married, but she doesn’t seem truly upset"

Ooooooh no no no. That is not what I saw at all. Hyun Soo's mom has decided this marriage is not going to happen and she is biding her time. I have this mom. This is the very, very beginning stages of Mom resistance: mildly stating her opinion but never wavering from it so then when it really gets down to the wire, she can come out with ultimatums and remind everyone in earshot that she never, ever agreed to this and has been stating her position from the start so no one should be surprised. Microaggressions like preventing the handshake and casually suggesting another man are just the start.

I just saw this entire process go down between my mother and my Hyun Soo-aged sister regarding an international move. That is aaaabsolutely the starting gun on a long cold war front. Mom's only going to be mild as long as she thinks she has a chance of getting her way without going nuclear - but she'll go nuclear if that's the only way to win.

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Oh man, you’re right. Hyun Soo’s mom is gonna be worse than Jung Sun’s mom. I think JS’s mom was surprised and slightly mollified after HS’s firm statement on her relationship with JS.

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Hyun Soo’s Mom is absolutely going to be the worse Mom. Jung Sun’s already got a huge barrier up against his mother and has drawn a hell of a lot of lines, it’s a big step to flip the switch but he can do it. Hyun Soo is so intertwined with her Mom that this has potential for a knockdown, dragout, “I know what’s best for you and our family” fight.

I really can’t overemphasize the thing where she stopped the handshake in front of everyone. That was just the sort of subtle rudeness that’s just under the level where you can call it out, and I swear that is exactly the sort of thing that if my mother does it, I know I have to nip this shit in the bud right now. It’s an easier fight to have when she’s still forming her biases and not entrenched, and that subtle rudeness is the first sign that she’s willing to go much further if you let this fester.

I like my mom a lot. This is absolutely her worst impulse, and it came to light once her kids became adults and she couldn’t outright forbid things anymore. It’s frequently rooted in irrational quick impressions and some sort of foggy suspicion of “knowing how this will end”, which she then accelerates with all the micro aggression crap. 99% of the time she’s a reasonable woman, but this 1% took my siblings and myself years to suss out, and is only countered now because we all watch out for it on each others’ behalf.

Of the entire episode, Mom’s scene was the one that made my pulse race and my skin goosebump.

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I found Hyun-soo's Mom's attitude disturbing, too. It's the holier-than-thou aura that gets my goat, as well as her imperiousness. Mom is a control freak. It drove me up the wall watching her go on and on about how great Mr. Park is, as if she didn't even hear what her daughter had to say. (I think she's got more than a hint of Bossy Schoolteacher Syndrome as well.)

I can't help but wonder how Mom's covert nastiness might have contributed to the bad blood between Hyun-soo and her sister.

Does Hyun-soo have Mom's number, or is she so enmeshed she doesn't see the forest for the trees?

Thank you for the concrete example from your own family. It really put Hyun-soo's Mom's aggressive behavior into perspective. I can see that it really rang your chimes. I used to lock horns with my own mother when she tried to become too pushy. (It's an apt metaphor, for that is exactly how cows establish dominance!)

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I can already see were this is going. By him constantly trying to keep his temper in check he's going to explode in a big way that will either scare him and he'll breakup with her or she leaves him till he ready to work through his issues cause both parents have done a number on him but they'll end up back together

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Jung Woo... how many different ways can she say SHE DON'T WANT YOU!!! Does he really think by breaking them up she'll come running to him??

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I felt that Hyunsoo suggesting they live together was completely wrong and inappropriate. I do understand why she would say that but it just was not the right time to bring that up. She is trying to put a bandaid on an open, bleeding wound or something that needs stitches. I don't know how Jungsun would take this and I have a feeling it won't be in a good way. Also I hate his mom. Wow what a complete nut job she is. She has no rights to be a mother if she is so selfish and does things without a complete lack of respect for her own child.

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Love it!

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I don't understand where tjis drama ia headed. Where is the climax of this story? Are we getting there yet? When will parents act like parents and stop ruining their children live? I wish Jung Sun will man up and fight very very for his career and woman. As for the other characters, I hope they just fade away like Hyun Sun's first Boss.

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Thanks for your recap and comments, LollyPip!

I don't understand how Jung-sun could be held responsible for his mother's debts, especially after she has already plundered his inheritance. This has never made any sense to me.

I have a feeling that what we've been shown of Jung-sun's father's violence is only one part of the bigger picture. We were not shown what led up to his abusive behavior, nor how long he was subjected to it before he became violent. If Narcissist Mom's behavior back then were the same as it is today, then she, as the older and presumably dominant partner, may well have driven her younger spouse off his rocker with her combination of narcissism, profligacy, and codependency. I can't help but wonder if Jung-sun has been privy to only Mom's version of the story and what she allowed him to see of it.

Note: This does not mean I'm excusing Dad's behavior in any way. Far from it. But it takes two to tango, and we've already seen that Narcissist Mom is an abuser in her own right. Too bad neither of their families protected Jung-sun and his interests.

In some respects, Hyun-soo's mother is a bigger impediment to OTP's relationship than Narcissist Mom. Her covert superiority and judgmental attitude strike me as hypocritical. I was taken aback by her response to Hyun-soo's declaration of love for Jung-sun. Mom is enamored of Jung-woo's money and power, which is downright two-faced when you consider how much she blathers about being in love with Dad, who makes nowhere near that kind of dough. (Has she been lying about loving Dad all this time?) I honestly don't understand her. Whereas Narcissist Mom is an extrovert who wears her emotions on her sleeve, Holier-Than-Thou Mom pretends to be nice, but really seems to be cold and controlling.

Why did Jung-woo befriend Jung-sun in the first place? He said it was because he liked his cooking. Was he looking for a kindred spirit? A passionate complement to his cold-blooded business acumen? Or a kid brother because he grew up an only child? Jung-sun sincerely appreciated his brotherly interest, little suspecting that hyung would later bankroll Mom's boytoy's painting career in France. Was he already laying a trap back then?

I understand where Jung-sun is coming from. As someone who grew up in a dysfunctional family, he's had to stuff his feelings, pretend that everything is normal, walk on eggshells in the presence of angry, volatile people, and do everything in his power to keep the peace. His tight control on his emotions is overcompensation for his parents' abominable behavior. He's also a perfectionist, which has got to be one of the most exhausting, as well as common, adaptations to growing up in a sick family. Although he has seemed to speak frankly with Hyun-soo about their relationship, he has kept much of his life secret from her. I suspect that he will freak out at her wanting to live together, and will feel as if she is invasive – like Mom.

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I was waiting for someone to bring up JungSun's mom's debt. Why is he responsible? It's actually the perfect way to get both Both his mom and Jung Woo out of his life. When I think about, is it even a debt? Did she borrow the money or was is given to her?

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Regarding taking on the debt, in any traditional culture the grown children take care of their parents both physically and financially. In the case of Jungsun, it's entirely in keeping with his character that he would clean up after his mother.

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Cleaning up is even more in Jung-sun's character as a damaged adult child whom Narcissist Mom forced into being her rescuer at a tender age. His attempt to escape her clutches by moving incognito to Korea, and his refusal to cave in to her insatiable demands for money, were actually healthy attempts to detach from her manipulative parasitism. Her relentless pursuit and engagement is no different from Jung-woo's behavior towards Hyun-soo -- and his entrapment of Jung-sun.

At the very least, Jung-sun needs a restraining order against Mom. (Having her declared legally incompetent with a court-appointed financial administrator is the only real relief I could imagine for him, but I doubt that he would pursue either course.) I understand that it would damn him to eternal hellfire in a Confucian society. Apparently there is no recourse against elders who fail to honor their obligations to their children. For all practical purposes, it's a one-way street. (I say this after extensive discussion of Song Sabu's warped version of Neoconfucianism in REBEL: THIEF WHO STOLE THE PEOPLE.)

I've been wondering what the law deems to be Jung-sun's responsibility in regard to his mother's debts. And what about her malfeasance and misappropriation of his inheritance?!

But even more than relief from Mom's and Jung-woo's predations, Jung-sun needs to adopt new, healthier behaviors and beliefs – or to experience the complete failure of his coping mechanisms. Until he hits bottom, he'll keep on trying to get by with the stiff upper lip of the rigidly-controlled, overly-responsible, perfectionistic false persona he's built up over the years. At some point, something will give, and it may just be his mind.

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JS's breakdown was completely normal to me. He's frustrated and the people closest to him are causing it. He need that cry, it was cathartic. He got it out was able to gain his composure. As a single parent I've had plenty of those. A good cry in the shower and by the time I'm drying off I feel much better. It releases all the frustration about things you can't control. You're composure comes back and you're ready to face those challenges again.

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What a great metaphor for Jungsun, that he's a flower that grew from garbage.

It's meant to echo Hyunsoo's flower that grew through a rock wall, but I think that rock flower also applies to Jungsun and not at all to Hyunsoo, whom we have yet to see struggle in any meaningful way. Quitting a show because her script was changed hardly compares to Jungsun's childhood or what he's going through now.

Maybe we'll see Hyunsoo struggle in the coming weeks--maybe her mother will try to break them up or when her career is sabotaged by Jungwoo or Hongah or both.

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I know I'm really late to this recap, but I only had time to watch the episodes today and I have a few things to get off my chest.

1) Like the majority here, I'm still unable to understand JW and I have given up on even trying to. And rather than attributing it to his character, I second Lollypip's opinion in thinking that this one is on the writer. I don't exactly know what s/he was trying to get across with this storyline of JW's persistence, but it's not working.

2) I don't know how to feel about HS's suggestion of moving in, but I don't think she is being naive about JS's situation (really hope so). We've seen JS's tendencies of suppressing his feelings and pretending that everything is fine, and while HS might not be aware of its extent, she did take notice of his unwillingness to open up. At this point, I don't think that being confrontational with JS would work, he would just be his usual self and pretend that he's fine. If HS moves in with him though, her chances of catching JS in his moment of weakness are far greater, and it would be hard for JS to deny anything if she is there to witness it. Of course everything could also backfire, because moving-in is also stripping JS of his "safe space" where he can actually break down freely. HS's presence might be suffocating for him. I'm hoping the latter won't happen.

3) I don't why the drama is trying to shove Hong-ah down our throats, but after everything she has done, are we supposed to magically forgive her? I feel like the show is trying to sell us a redemption arc, but Hong-ah has done nothing to redeem herself, nor can I envision anything she could to make herself likeable or justify the leniency that the characters are showing towards her. She just makes me unconditionally angry.

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@ yuyuu,

#2: I think Jung-sun is in much deeper kimchi than Hyun-soo realizes. (See my other posts above & below.)

#3: Agree with you about Hong-ah. Maybe she's the protagonist of a cautionary tale. Is there some way to sic her on Narcissistic Mom?! It would be fun watching them drive each other nuts.

#1: The more I think of his relationship with Jung-sun, the more I wonder about Jung-woo. Cookery aside, I truly suspect that he was attracted to Jung-sun because of a familiar vibe that resonated with his own emotional deprivation and stuntedness. In a real sense, Jung-sun might feel like the younger brother he never had. Jung-woo may well be subconsciously replicating his own family of origin, this time with a younger sibling (and Hyun-soo as [emotionally] absent “mom”?). And now he's engaging in chaebol-esque mind games with Jung-sun -- and bullying him and Hyun-soo.

I suspect Jung-woo has abandonment issues, hence his hostage-taking behavior.

Is Jung-woo perhaps jealous of Jung-sun's and Hyun-soo's creativity? The former is not only a talented chef, but a gifted graphic artist. He may even be a better artist than Professor Min! Hyun-soo is supposedly a good dramatist, but since I've never seen MAN WHO EATS RARE STEAK, I'll just have to believe the hype. I don't count her detective show because it was mangled by Director Min. Maybe Jung-woo feels inferior to them because of their creativity, and falls back on the thing he does best: making money to use as a weapon.

Perhaps the best thing that could happen would be for Jung-sun to turn the restaurant over to Jung-woo, pay off Mom's debt – and quit. He would no longer have much money, so Narcissistic Mom would have to ditch Professor Min and go find a wealthy sugar daddy to support her lavish lifestyle. Without a high-overhead fine-dining establishment to support, Jung-sun could reinvent himself and perhaps work as a food consultant or a private chef. Or open his own pojangmacha, which would have lower overhead than the restaurant. He'd be homeless without Good Soup, but maybe could crash with Won-joon.

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The fact that Jung-sun pulled himself together so rapidly suggests that thus far he has not had a full-blown nervous breakdown/breakthrough. He is still successfully suppressing and denying his feelings. My concern for him is that he is at risk of becoming the very things he fears and hates the most: a person who engages in physical violence and emotional abuse, and/or an irresponsible narcissist. Or he may fall prey to some addictive behavior.

Given Jung-sun's baggage, I suspect that achieving the same “temperature of love” as Hyun-soo is the least of his worries at this time. The thermal metaphor is predicated on both partners being emotionally sound, which is not the case here. While the love and caring support of a significant other can make a huge difference to a person in recovery, the sad fact is that many relationships do not survive the often-drastic changes people have to make in their attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors in order to grow into their true selves.

Think about it for a second. The charming Jung-sun we've seen up until now is the false persona he adopted to survive in an emotionally toxic environment. He is a little too perfect. Who is the real Jung-sun? He hasn't a clue at this time, and neither does anyone else. If Writer-nim manages to pull off a truly realistic character arc for him, the only happy ending I can imagine at this time is Jung-sun's personal growth into his true self, whoever that may be. But while Hyun-soo may be convinced that she is involved in a once-in-a-lifetime love, she doesn't know the true Jung-sun. How long will it take for him to emerge, if ever? She wasn't willing to wait five years for him to finish cooking school and establish himself in his career. Even if she is now willing to wait for him, the outcome is far from predictable. 28 years of unhealthy living will not be healed overnight.

Hyun-soo's idea of a happy ending for her drama may be unattainable in real life. I have a feeling that she missed the window of opportunity five years ago. But even if they had dated back then, sooner or later Jung-sun would have had to deal with his baggage. On the up side, no innocent children are involved this time around.

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It's obviously more difficult for Park Daepyo cus he really likes Jung Sun. Jung Sun is strong in a way that is similar to himself. He probably fell silent after the rooftop chat at his office because of this. I love how the drama doesn't need to say many things to show that.

Weird how the central relationship feels like their friendship rather than the romance now. HAHA But I like it.

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