The Third Charm: Episode 6
Following all the jealous antics, it appears that our lovebirds have reached a standstill. They’re at a point where they’ve tried all they can do, or at least, all that their respective personalities will allow them to do. Since there’s no changing their personalities, there’s no changing their predicament. The frustration is palpable on both sides as they realize that the relationship they wanted so badly to work may not work after all.
EPISODE 6 RECAP
After Young-jae and So-hee’s fight, everyone files out of the room as Ho-chul examines Young-jae’s ankle. What they don’t know is that Joon-young is still there, unable to come forward and unable to leave.
Young-jae brings up Ho-chul saying that he came to the show for her, and he confirms this with a smile. He then confesses that he likes her, which is the last thing Joon-young wanted to hear.
Young-jae replies that she has a boyfriend, and Ho-chul isn’t surprised; he figured someone like her couldn’t be single. He clarifies that he just likes her as a person. Having heard enough, Joon-young approaches them.
Ho-chul recognizes Joon-young from their encounter at the gas station. He also notices that Joon-young and Young-jae are wearing matching couple shoes. That’s Joon-young’s cue to officially introduce himself as the boyfriend. Curiously, Ho-chul keeps smiling and says it’s nice to meet him. Joon-young hesitates but still shakes his hand, saying the same thing.
Joon-young drives Young-jae to the big party following the fashion show, and he’s lost in thought as she talks about how great everything went tonight. She’s excited for the future, as well as having more time for romantic dates. Joon-young agrees with feigned enthusiasm. The night goes on and he sits outside the party, alone with his worries. He hits his head as if trying to knock them out, but it seems futile. So he decides to go home, texting Young-jae that an urgent case came up.
Ho-chul is driving home, also lost in thought. He thinks about his confession to Young-jae and wonders aloud, “I like her? Me?”
The next day, Joon-young is focused on cleaning his windows as he tries to get things straight. He narrates that Young-jae said she had a boyfriend, Ho-chul said he likes her as a person, and he confidently introduced himself. Even after all that, he still has this horrible feeling deep down.
Judging his sudden urge to clean, Ri-won correctly guesses that he must be worrying over something petty. She’s certain that his pettiness means he won’t be calling Young-jae first. Before leaving, she says that calling first doesn’t mean you love the other person more; it’s just a matter of personality.
Speaking of personalities, Young-jae is the first to call. She wants to know what the master planner has in store for their big getaway date. However, Joon-young lies that there’s too much going on at the station to go out, which is when Ri-won busts his cover, bursting in and loudly announcing she’s making ramen. Young-jae says that she gets it and hangs up, annoyed.
Meanwhile, Joo-ran is spending time with the handsome man she’d met at the park. Pretty Boy shows her the proper techniques to rock climb by getting pretty handsy, which she doesn’t at all mind.
They later visit a puppy café with his dog Princess, and Joo-ran is extremely uncomfortable. But when she hears that Pretty Boy’s ex hated dogs, she lies that she finds them adorable. Well, this can’t be good.
Young-jae’s still bothered by her last phone call with Joon-young. She wonders if he heard Ho-chul’s confession, then shakes it off as whatever. The doorbell then rings and she’s confused to find So-hee at her doorstep.
So-hee takes her out for drinks and explains that she convinced Young-jae’s assistant to reveal her address. She says that people may badmouth her behind her back, but they’re always nice to her face. That’s why she’s always hated Young-jae—because she’s confident in front of her.
She continues that she only hired Young-jae for the show to humiliate her, but Young-jae stayed confident until the end, never giving up. As for Ho-chul, she can tell she’s already lost that battle to Young-jae, not that she cares (uh-huh, sure).
Either way, So-hee came to say that Young-jae is still annoying, and nothing will change that, so So-hee will just do better from now on. Young-jae sighs at that, but when they part ways, she sends her off warmly.
Young-jae hangs out with Joo-ran and tells her that she understands So-hee and her hurt pride a little more. She doesn’t understand, however, why Joo-ran is now packing a fancy lunchbox for Pretty Boy. She says it’s better to act natural, but Joo-ran thinks that no guy would like her fiery personality.
Since Young-jae’s getaway plans with Joon-young were cancelled, she spends the night at Joo-ran’s. After hearing the whole story, Joo-ran says it’s understandable for Joon-young to be upset. Joo-ran knows that he’s always doing the giving in the relationship and asks what Young-jae has given in return. “Love?” Young-jae offers. Joo-ran’s obvious disappointment gets Young-jae thinking.
The next day, Soo-jae finds the same officers by his spot, shooing away another business. He narrates that these officers should know that their business is difficult, especially to people like him. But he can’t bring himself to say anything. Instead, he gives the officers free coffee and heads out.
While Ho-chul is playing tennis with his buddies, a woman drops her racket and he helps her out. His friends watch, laughing that their friend only acts nice to make himself look good.
His friends then ask if he’s dating, saying it’s been two years since his divorce. And he surprises them by answering that there is someone that he likes.
At the Ohn household, everyone’s hanging out outside (with Dad dyeing Mom’s hair, hee) when Young-jae shows up with some pork belly. Seeing that they’re taken aback, I’d say they’re not used to this.
Nevertheless, Joon-young’s family welcomes the kind gesture. Young-jae grills the meat, smiling as Mom and Dad playfully bicker. She then eyes Joon-young, her expression hopeful. Though he doesn’t seem as upset, he just takes the tongs from her so she can eat.
He drives her back afterwards, and she cautiously explains that she came as a sort of truce—she hopes he’s not mad anymore. His voice calm, he says she doesn’t have to be sorry since it’s not her fault. She asks what it is then, and he simply states that it’s his problem.
But she’s tired of this; she asks why he has to make everything so complicated. At that, Joon-young decides to vent after all. He says that because he was late, Ho-chul ended up helping her. And as he watched them smiling together, he wondered what he was even doing there.
Young-jae tries to say that it’s not a big deal and that Ho-chul did nothing wrong, but Joon-young interprets it as her taking Ho-chul’s side. He thinks she’d be upset too if she were in his shoes.
Frustrated, she calls him petty-minded, and he throws back that she’s simple-minded. “Stop the car,” she demands.
When he doesn’t, she moves to open the door and he’s forced to swerve to a stop. She gets out without another word, ignoring his cries. He starts to follow her but something makes him hold back.
He narrates that Young-jae is right about him being petty-minded, but he can’t stop himself. Right now, all he’s capable of is feeling pathetic. So he returns to his car and drives away. And as Young-jae walks on, she looks disappointed that he didn’t go after her.
Elsewhere, Joo-ran is pumping herself up for her big date at Pretty Boy’s apartment. Everything has been going smoothly with him so far, so this is the most optimistic she’s been in a while. She spritzes some perfume and joins Pretty Boy in the living room.
As they drink their wine, Pretty Boy notes that it’ll be awkward if they continue to deny their feelings. (Cringing. Cringing so hard.) He leans in and kisses her, nearly making her melt. So far, so good.
But then little Princess starts licking Joo-ran’s leg and she can’t focus. She gives Princess a small kick and makes her yelp. Pretty Boy immediately stops the kissing and picks up Princess, cooing that she must be jealous. Joo-ran watches in disbelief as he makes kissy faces with the pup.
That night, Soo-jae is having writer’s block again and goes out to the kitchen for some water. He then notices Young-jae sitting by the window and looking out at the view. He wheels over to join her and asks if something happened today. “How were Mom and Dad?” she asks him. “Did they have a good relationship?” Soo-jae would say so, seeing that they died and left this earth together.
Young-jae isn’t so sure, though; since their parents died early, she thinks that they only saw the good parts. And if they were alive today, they could’ve divorced for all they know. She shakes her head, wondering why men and women date when it’s just an endless cycle of fighting and making up. “That’s what you call a relationship,” Soo-jae points out. She turns to him and asks if he misses dating, but he doesn’t answer. They both look up at the moon as the question hangs in the air.
The next day at work, Joon-young is given a bonus for being the most thorough in investigations. He promises his team a celebratory dinner, but his team’s excitement is squashed when he gets a phone call from Soo-jae.
He meets Soo-jae and finds him giving his coffee truck an emotional farewell. After selling the truck, he tells Joon-young in typical dramatic fashion that loving something doesn’t always mean staying with them.
And now that Soo-jae is without a vehicle, he needs Joon-young to take him grocery shopping. He plans on making an early birthday feast for Young-jae. And having had her birthday on his mind, Joon-young goes along with it.
They get all the ingredients needed and despite Joon-young’s reluctance, Soo-jae insists on paying with his coffee truck money. They then return to Soo-jae and Young-jae’s place and screech to a stop at the elevator, where there’s an “Under Repair” sign.
Joon-young doesn’t hesitate to kneel down and offer Soo-jae a lift. Soo-jae does hesitate but accepts when Joon-young says that he’s plenty strong. Joon-young ends up struggling along the way, but he merely keeps on as Soo-jae explains that his worst fear is being a burden to Young-jae.
Once they reach the apartment, they get to cooking, with Soo-jae on onion peeling duty. He says that ever since his accident, he hasn’t once been able to prepare a birthday meal for Young-jae. Joon-young sadly watches as Soo-jae wipes his eyes from the onions stinging.
When Young-jae comes home that night, she’s surprised to see Soo-jae there. He surprises her further by revealing that he sold the truck to focus on his screenwriting. She slaps on a smile and tells him he did well.
She suggests ordering food, and Soo-jae tells her that Joon-young’s cooking is already waiting for her. Joon-young made everything just to her tastes, but he left when Soo-jae asked that he join them. He says that Young-jae should call him and as she looks at the layout of food, she quietly replies that she should.
The next day, Joon-young sits at his desk, staring at the gift he’d gotten for Young-jae. He knows that this is the perfect time to finally call her, but even now, he can’t bring himself to do it. His team begs to have the celebratory dinner tonight, and he eventually agrees to it. Oh come on, Joon-young, really?
Young-jae’s first birthday gift of the day turns out to be a big interview offer from Cosmo Magazine. She’s ecstatic, and she welcomes all the other gifts from her students, but when she’s left alone, she thinks of Joon-young.
She looks at his number but calls Soo-jae instead, saying that it’d be too much to call on her birthday. When she hangs up, Ho-chul walks into the salon, having noticed she was alone. He starts to ask her out to eat when he notices all the gifts.
Young-jae had already made a reservation at a fancy restaurant, so she takes Ho-chul there for dinner. He keeps trying to talk to her, but she’s constantly looking at her phone. He brings this up, assuming she’s fighting with her boyfriend. And is it just me or does he actually look smug?
Across the room, Sang-hyun happens to be on a date and he’s shocked to see Young-jae with Ho-chul. He calls Joon-young to inform him and then drags his date out of there, positive it’s about to get ugly.
After hanging up, Joon-young leaves his team and drives over to the restaurant, his expression eerily blank. “I don’t have the heart to make up or to apologize,” he narrates. “What’s driving me to action is my anger.”
Back at the restaurant, Ho-chul guesses that Young-jae must really like her boyfriend, and she smiles, confirming this. Unfortunately, Joon-young walks in when they’re clinking glasses and smiling freely.
He calls her phone, watching her reaction, and deflates to hear a mere “Yeah?” He tells her to come out and talk, making her look around the room until they lock eyes. She excuses herself to Ho-chul and joins Joon-young outside.
Joon-young gets to the point, asking if she did this on purpose. She doesn’t understand, so he then asks how she’d feel if she found him at a restaurant with another girl. She says that of course she’d be mad, but how would he feel if she didn’t call him on his birthday?
Joon-young says that he couldn’t call because of his jealousy—because Young-jae won’t make things clear with Ho-chul, and because she keeps giving him reasons to feel suspicious.
“I get it,” she says, hurt. “So you don’t trust me.” Joon-young starts to say that that’s not it, but he’s interrupted by Ho-chul.
Ho-chul gets between the two and tells Joon-young that his meal with Young-jae isn’t over yet. Young-jae remains silent as Joon-young stares at him in utter disbelief.
Thank you, drama gods, for giving me exactly what I asked for. I never thought I’d be happy to see an onscreen couple fight, but here we are, and it’s about time too. The episode was hard to watch, as expected, but I thought it was handled very well. It slowed down, and not by dragging moments out but by milking them. For shows like this, it’s the quieter, thoughtful moments I enjoy, like Joon-young washing his window or Young-jae watching the moon. I want to stay with these small moments because I know that Joon-young is petty for a reason and that Young-jae is annoyed for a reason. I like seeing their thought process, and they’re starting to ask themselves the right questions even though they may not want the answers.
Joon-young is being a bit much, but we’ve known that he can be insecure. He’s not being petty to be petty; he’s being petty because he’s genuinely hurt. Young-jae keeps making him these promises, and she keeps breaking them like they’re nothing. Sure, these promises may not mean as much to her, and that’s fine, but she could at least see how important they are to him. I’d put this on Seo Kang-joon’s lovely performance, but that was a look of betrayal, not just jealousy. Then you flip it around and, like Young-jae, you wish that he would stop being so suffocating.
I think Joon-young and Young-jae’s respective feelings are hard to articulate, but they at least tried at the end. It’s like they want to step up and say one thing, but they end up taking ten steps back and saying ten different things. He shouldn’t have decided to go out with co-workers on her birthday and she shouldn’t have invited another guy to a reservation she made for her boyfriend. Both statements are true in my mind, but at the end of the day, none of it really matters. They both dug their own graves, but at the same time, neither is really at fault. This is just how they’re wired. And try as you might, you can’t change someone’s personality.
Another thing I liked in this episode was all the hesitation—Joon-young being unable to chase after Young-jae, and Young-jae being unable to call Joon-young. They want to fix this, but in the back of their minds, I think they know that, well, this is it. This is as far as they go. It seems silly to end something that they finally got after seven years (especially over a third party that seriously does not matter), but what else can they do? Their personalities have certain lines and they refuse to cross them. Simple as that. Hopefully, this fight will help them step out of the boxing ring, out of the romance drama, and sort out their priorities.
Now, look, Ho-chul seems like a nice enough guy, but what the hell is he doing? Why is he acting as if he still thinks Young-jae is single? Why is he cutting into an argument that he knows these two need to have? I don’t get it. And after hearing what his friends had to say about him, I’m beginning to think that his actions aren’t genuine. He’s not doing these things for Young-jae, he’s doing it for himself, because he likes her. He’s known her for such a short time and he’s already being way too nosy for comfort. But he has such a polite vibe to him that you almost forget about all that. So I can see why Young-jae would see his presence as no big deal and why Joon-young would see it as threatening. It’s all about perspective.