The Third Charm: Episode 5
The jealous boyfriend has arrived and he means serious business. Joon-young’s insecurities get the best of him this episode, making him question Young-jae and everything about their relationship. Unfortunately, there’s not much to go on with her being his first and only girlfriend. All he can do is stay angry with her, which he’ll find is nearly impossible to do.
EPISODE 5 RECAP
Joon-young catches Young-jae in her salon washing another man’s hair. To Joon-young, it looks like the two are having a grand ol’ time flirting, but we cut to inside the salon and see that the man’s (Ho-chul) advances fall flat every time.
Young-jae answers a call from Joon-young, who’s watching from behind a bush, and says she’ll talk to him later. Unsatisfied with her response, Joon-young takes the snacks he’d bought for her and leaves. He opts for Sang-hyun’s bar instead.
After Ho-chul’s new hairstyle is complete, Young-jae brings him up to the register. He stares at her intensely and she asks what’s wrong, acting coy. He leans in, saying there’s a hair on her face, and…
“STOP,” Joon-young yells, shattering his imagination and scaring everyone in the bar. He’s still fuming when he drives home, so he doesn’t answer when Young-jae finally calls him back.
His annoyance slips into the workplace the next day. He chides his team members for their police reports, saying he’s practically choking from their lack of commas. At that, Officer Jung immediately backtracks and adds a comma, heh.
Later, Joon-young has lunch with Officers Jung and Gong. After learning of Joon-young’s lady troubles, his teammates serve as the shoulder angel and devil with their opinions.
Sweet Officer Jung assures him that the man in the salon was probably just a customer. And besides, he and Young-jae have a history, meaning loyalty. Joon-young starts to smile, but then Officer Gong (who’s still bitter about his failed date) says that if he’s too trusting, he’ll get stabbed in the back.
Their other teammate Officer Lee joins them, suggesting he put his police badge to use and try to catch them in the act. And Joon-young, being the impressionable goober he is, actually listens and has a stakeout outside Young-jae’s salon. Young-jae calls to see what’s going on, and he huffs that he’s busy with work like she is. He then spies Ho-chul passing by in his car and hangs up to trail him.
Joon-young follows Ho-chul to a gas station, making himself totally conspicuous as he stares him down. Ho-chul approaches him, politely asking if they know each other. Joon-young presents his badge, lying that there’s a sex offender on the loose who looks an awful lot like Ho-chul; he asks to see some ID.
Joon-young returns to Sang-hyun’s bar to relay his findings. Now that he knows Joon-young is up against a big shot plastic surgeon, Sang-hyun thinks he doesn’t stand a chance. He says that if Young-jae isn’t cheating with him now, she definitely will later. “That man is a lion,” Sang-hyun explains, “and you’re a sloth.” So he suggests he give up and let nature take its course. Joon-young hangs his head, more confused than ever.
Joon-young returns to the salon to watch Young-jae. He follows her on her way home and narrates, “I know Young-jae very well. She stays long after closing time to practice. As long as the subway is running, even if she’s tired, she doesn’t take taxis.”
As Young-jae waits for her subway car, Joon-young stays back. He sees her texting and opens his phone to messages saying she misses him. “I know Young-jae very well,” he thinks, “and I trust that it’s nothing serious, but I still didn’t want to answer her.”
He rides her subway as well, watching her sway in exhaustion. When someone leaves an open seat, a man moves to take it, making Joon-young grab his arm. He makes sure Young-jae takes the seat and then apologizes, saying he mistook the man for a friend.
Joon-young then notices that Young-jae isn’t carrying the portfolio she had earlier. Cursing, he gets off the train and runs across the station to take the next train back. A couple has already found the portfolio and, admiring the drawings, taken it with them. Thankfully, Joon-young catches them in time and asks for it back. Aw, you softie.
Young-jae realizes too late that her portfolio is missing and panics. At the salon the next day, she tells Joo-ran, saying that all of her designs for Hong’s fashion show were in there. Like clockwork, a package comes in for Young-jae, and she’s overjoyed to find her portfolio. She wishes the sender had a left a name so she could thank them.
Ho-chul’s assistant tells him that the “Devil” has returned, and he heads into his office to find So-hee (ha). Outside, the nurses gossip about So-hee and the fact that she only comes here because she wants to marry him. And So-hee certainly flirts it up as she brags about her spot in Hong’s fashion show.
She reminds Ho-chul of the first time they met, when he’d dissuaded her from having any surgery. She tells him that after saying those kind words, he should take responsibility for her. Ho-chul chokes on his coffee.
She invites him to the show, and though he doesn’t seem all that interested, a nurse comes in and fangirls over the star-studded event. She promises to make sure Ho-chul will attend.
So-hee visits Young-jae’s salon next, wanting her hair done as a sort of test. Young-jae reluctantly does so, while So-hee orders the students around, demanding special coffee and food. Young-jae does her best to hold back, even when So-hee brings up the old days. Either way, So-hee says she probably won’t be a regular since Young-jae’s skills are lacking and she makes her uncomfortable.
Elsewhere, Joo-ran is off on yet another blind date with a much younger man. He seems to be knowledgeable and classy, and Joo-ran excuses herself to call Young-jae and tell her all about him. Young-jae thinks the age difference is too much, but Joo-ran is all for turning this boy into a man.
However, when Joo-ran heads back to their table, she overhears her date talking about her. He tells his buddy on the phone that the old lady he was set up with could be his aunt and he’s tired of watching her sit stiffly in order to hide her stomach.
Joo-ran barges into the room, making the guy hang up, and she sits in a more-than-comfy position. She drops the honorifics and orders him to pour more wine, scaring the kid. As she gulps down her glass, it’s clear that this another manhunt mission failed.
Still stressed over So-hee’s hijinks, Young-jae tries calling Joon-young and Soo-jae but neither answer. So she just leaves the salon, nearly colliding with a scooter and dropping her designs. Ho-chul, who’s passing by, stops to help her pick them up. He then pulls her away from another oncoming car.
Now that they’re together, Ho-chul joins Young-jae for her spicy chicken feet dinner. He asks if she had meant to come alone, and she explains that the person she wanted to be with can’t eat spicy food.
Ho-chul says he believes that spicy food is a great stress-reliever, echoing Young-jae’s thoughts. He mentions that even doctors think mental health is more important than physical health. At that, Young-jae admits that when they first met, she thought he worked at a club because all he ever talked about was women. He laughs and says he mistook her for a gangster, making them even.
Ho-chul orders some soju, making Young-jae wonder if he’s also stressed over something. He isn’t exactly stressed, but he does say that there are people who make him uncomfortable no matter how many times he sees them and people who put him at ease after only meeting once.
“It might be because there are no personal feelings there,” Young-jae points out. She says that any relationship, whether good or bad, starts to feel uncomfortable once there are feelings involved. He smiles at her as she continues to eat.
The next day, Joo-ran is exercising at the park to rid of her stomach fat (oh, honey, no). While taking a bathroom break, she encounters a small dog and takes it outside to find its owner. And, what do you know, it happens to be a very good-looking man.
Meanwhile, Soo-jae’s coffee business isn’t doing so well. He decides to give two coffees away when he doesn’t have the right amount of change, and his next customers happen to be officers wanting him to move his car. Poor guy.
To make things worse, Soo-jae doesn’t have enough money to fill up on gas. He reluctantly calls Young-jae for some help. Just then, Joon-young and his team are walking by after having had lunch.
Joon-young notices Soo-jae by himself and excuses himself from his team to join him. After Soo-jae explains his predicament, Joon-young happily pays the bill. They’re still talking when Young-jae arrives and she smiles to see the boys together.
She drops the smile to confront Joon-young, asking why he’s been ignoring all of her calls. She then turns to Soo-jae, concerned that he ran out of money, and he lies that he has things under control.
Joon-young says goodbye to Soo-jae and turns to leave, with Young-jae following close behind. Despite what he says, she can tell that he’s upset and she wants to know why. He tells her everything as she follows him back to the station.
She’s surprised to hear that Ho-chul is the cause of all this, and she assures him that it’s no big deal. Still, Joon-young is worried after seeing Ho-chul flirt with her; he says that any guy who sees her would like her.
Young-jae bursts out laughing, frustrating him further. But she just looks at him sweetly and gives him a quick kiss, calling him adorable.
He avoids eye contact as she shakes him and says, “No matter who flirts with me, you’re the only one for me.” Still, he quietly tells her to get in the car so he can drive her back. Like I said, softie.
In the car, Young-jae tells Joon-young not to get suspicious again and he tells her not to do anything that makes him suspicious. She promises and then suggests a nice, romantic date after the fashion show.
She lets out a big yawn, wishing she could let out all her stress with a night by sea before the show. As she drifts off to sleep, Joon-young gets an idea.
When Young-jae wakes up, the car is parked in front of the ocean. Joon-young appears by the window with a drink and she looks up at him, stunned. He merely says that he hopes the view relieved some of her stress, and she’s so moved that she starts to tear up.
He then says that they should start driving if they want to get back that night. She grumbles that he killed the mood, and he just continues that she needs her sleep for the show. She leans out the window and interrupts him with a long kiss.
Designer Hong’s fashion show starts gearing up the next day, and backstage is total chaos. Designer Hong is running around yelling at models, Young-jae and her students are styling any hair they can get their hands on and, of course, So-hee shows up late. Nevertheless, the show itself goes on flawlessly, and Young-jae is able to get So-hee all dolled up once she arrives.
Joon-young, however, is stuck in traffic the entire time. By the time he gets to the building, the show is coming to a close. He jumps out of his car with flowers for Young-jae, but stops when he realizes he didn’t park between the lines. He knows he should ignore it, but he ends up re-parking anyway, lol.
After the show, Designer Hong praises Young-jae and suggests they work together again, earning a scowl from So-hee.
Ho-chul and his nurses find their way backstage and So-hee lights up. Ho-chul walks over to her and is shocked to see Young-jae there as well. So-hee’s smile falters as she realizes the two already know each other.
So-hee orders Young-jae to bring her a cup of coffee, so Young-jae has one of her students fetch it. So-hee turns to Young-jae and silently tells her to stop being obnoxious and do as she says like the hairstylist she is.
That tears it. Young-jae loudly repeats what So-hee just said, saying she should stop being obnoxious herself and just have some confidence. So-hee stands up and jabs Young-jae in the forehead, asking who she’s calling obnoxious.
The girls start shoving and pulling at each other’s hair (ugh, not this again), before Young-jae falls to the ground. Ho-chul grabs So-hee’s arm, telling her to stop, but she yells that he shouldn’t worry about a hairstylist like Young-jae.
As Ho-chul says that he came to see Young-jae and not So-hee, Joon-young pushes through the crowd to see what’s going on. And the first thing he sees is Ho-chul helping Young-jae off the floor. Frozen in place, he just watches with a broken expression.
You guys, I’ve figured it all out. So-hee is the source of all of Joon-young and Young-jae’s problems. She starts a fight in 2006, they break up. She starts a fight here, and there are signs of them breaking up again. Coincidence? Okay, in all seriousness, So-hee is becoming a bigger pain by the minute and I’m seeing absolutely no chances of redemption. I just don’t get her character at all, outside her being a straight-up villain. A villain that has to beat Young-jae at everything, even with men. Now that the So-hee business is off my chest, let’s get to the actual problems at hand.
The pacing is really starting to worry me. The flashbacks were rushed to get us to their 2013 romance, and their 2013 romance is being rushed to get us to what I’m assuming will be their present-day romance. At this point, I want the director to pay attention to the yellow traffic light and slow the hell down. Admittedly, when the drama’s synopsis was first announced, I thought we’d see all four “seasons” of their relationship simultaneously, giving us four timelines in each episode. In my head, it seemed different, thought-provoking, and fast-paced in a smart way. But the drama’s setup here makes it feel like the typical rom-com that’s fast-paced in all the wrong ways. All I can say is that something constantly feels off and that something may be Young-jae. I keep noticing that Joon-young gives and gives and gives, while she only receives. That’s why I was glad she provided some reassurance and told him that he was the only one for her. But their whole dynamic is still unbalanced.
True, the relationship has always been somewhat unstable, but their first three months of dating created enough fluff to hide that. Now that there’s an actual obstacle, even an arguably minor one, the fluff is useless. And of course, they’re not talking about it. And, you know what? Now I want them to fight, because it seems like the only way these two will hash things out. This is their first real relationship, so I can understand why Joon-young sometimes acts like a jealous teen boyfriend. He has nothing to compare it to. And, to be quite honest, he has a legitimate reason to feel uneasy. Young-jae isn’t the type of person to grant security. In that, I mean that affection, and constant showing of that affection, is not her forte.
If Joon-young has the time to shadow her at the subway, then couldn’t she put in a little effort too? (Also, don’t you have actual crooks to catch, Joon-young?) People show affection in different ways and on different levels, but Young-jae’s affection for Joon-young is hard to read. Like she’s not in it 100%. She’s never been one to show her emotions easily, so that could be the cause. Maybe she’s holding back because she feels she has to. Either way, if the drama is trying to make us feel as if we’re in Joon-young’s shoes, I can definitely say it’s succeeding, because I am officially conflicted. Like him, I am confused with Young-jae’s actions (or lack thereof), and even angry with them. Like him, I still love her so much as a person that I can’t stay angry for the entire episode. But there will come a time when that love won’t be enough. And I fear that that time is imminent.