Oh My Baby: Episode 9
Romance is in the air, and our heroine is thriving in all the cringey, cute, and heartwarming joys in this new relationship. Everyone except for best friend Jae-young is rooting for this new couple, and he hesitates to make his feelings known. He struggles to determine his which role — father, family, best friend, or potential romantic partner — will allow him to keep our heroine in his life.
EPISODE 9: “Moments we call love 1”
Yi-sang stops Ha-ri and musters up the courage to take the next step, leaning in to kiss her. Ha-ri closes her eyes, and the romantic kiss looks beautifully cinematic as the fireworks burst behind them. After a moment, Ha-ri peeks at Yi-sang and worries about how to end the kiss.
Nearby fireworks watchers comment on their movie-like kiss, prompting them to pull apart and dwell in awkwardness. Ha-ri thinks to herself not to say anything to make this more awkward, but she can’t help herself and blurts out that their kiss was indeed movie-like. They laugh awkwardly, and they run off in embarrassment as their audience cheers them on. Ha!
Yi-sang walks Ha-ri home as they both glace at each other with giddy smiles. He admits that he wanted to see her today and enjoyed the night. To clarify his intentions, Yi-sang assures Ha-ri, “The kiss wasn’t a mistake. I like you.” He apologizes for his late confession and agrees to replace worry about their future with curiosity. Ha-ri looks overjoyed, and they reluctantly part in front of her home. As Yi-sang walks away, Ha-ri peeks around the corner to giddily watch him go. Ahh, she’s so excited, it’s so cute!
Over dinner, Vice President Joo asks Manager Kim about his opinion on promoting Ha-ri to the editor-in-chief role. Manager Kim thinks that despite Ha-ri’s poor reputation, she does her job extremely well. That’s not what Vice President Joo wants to hear, and Manager Kim quickly defers to his superior on the issue.
Vice President Joo says that he plans to hire externally and seek out someone with skills in marketing content. Manager Kim’s ears perk up at the implication to his department, and Vice President Joo throws even more bait by mentioning that someone will need to take responsibility for their declining marketing performance.
Ha-ri wakes up with the happy memory of her kiss with Yi-sang and dances her way to the bathroom. Finding Jae-young’s boxers in her laundry hamper spoils her mood, and she bickers with Jae-young as they leave for work. Ha-ri chokes him with his necktie, and she lets go when Yi-sang greets her with a cup of coffee.
Yi-sang says that he usually doesn’t like waiting for people but admits that waiting for her exciting. Jae-young cringes at the cheesy comment, and he tells them that carpooling is a great practice for colleagues. Ha-ri doesn’t confirm nor deny this carpooling assumption.
Jae-young finds their friendliness suspicious and follows them a bit further. As they walk to his car, Yi-sang cranks out a couple more cheesy lines and punny ajusshi jokes about Ha-ri being his charming girlfriend, and Jae-young cringes once again.
Eu-tteum arrives at work on his bike and runs into Hyo-joo, who asks why he’s biking to work now. He explains his commute savings in detail and ultimately plans to buy a ring (per Hyo-joo’s suggestion) for his confession. Hyo-joo still thinks that Eu-tteum is confessing to her and advises that he keep the details to himself.
When Yi-sang and Ha-ri arrive at work, Ha-ri tries to rush into the building. She wants to keep their workplace romance a secret, but Yi-sang wants to brag about her. Ha-ri wonders what he fell for after denying his feelings for so long, and Yi-sang shares that he fell for Ha-ri’s embarrassment and her talking nonsense.
Ha-ri seems slightly offended by this, but Yi-sang gives her assurance about his feelings. “I crossed the line, and I can’t go back.” He asks her to continue to like him, even if he disappoints her. Yi-sang says that he’ll take responsibility for his confession and promises that his feelings for her won’t change.
Ha-ri agrees to this and makes a pinky promise to keep their workplace romance a secret and date for as long as they can. When the part, we see that Ha-ri’s editing team was eavesdropping on their conversation the whole time from the balcony. LOL.
Yi-sang enters Jambi studio in high spirits and greets Soo-chul, who’s making coffee without his brace on. Yi-sang notices the brace on the table and throws it at Soo-chul as a test, and he confirms Soo-chul’s recovered wrist. Soo-chul apologizes nervously explains that he was just trying to get Yi-sang and Ha-ri together, not trying to get out of work. Yi-sang stoically approaches him and gives him a bear hug.
Breaking into a smile, Yi-sang says that he’s dedicated to working with Soo-chul. Curious about the relationship, Soo-chul asks about Yi-sang’s commitment to the bachelor life, and Yi-sang says that Ha-ri has a commitment against marriage. They’re both loosening their commitments, but when Soo-chul asks about having children, Yi-sangs look more serious. “We’ll have to hope for a miracle,” he says.
Jae-young thinks back to Yi-sang and Ha-ri’s suspicious interaction that morning and calls Ha-ri to demand her presence at Do-ah’s 1st birthday photoshoot. He then asks her out in the most Jae-young way possible by yelling that she promised to eat dinner and watch a movie with him. Ha-ri scoffs at his tantrum, and Jae-young immediately regrets his childish outburst.
Yeon-ho catches Ha-ri in the hallway and loudly confronts her about her relationship with Yi-sang. Shushing her team, Ha-ri ushers them into a meeting room and asks what they saw. They tease her about what they could have seen, and Ha-ri asks them to keep the rumors at bay, since she already has a poor reputation. They promise to keep the secret and warns Ha-ri to be careful.
Then, they ask about Ha-ri’s pregnancy project and wonder if her problem is now solved with Yi-sang in her life. Ha-ri says that Yi-sang doesn’t like children, but her team convinces her that Yi-sang is probably already considering it, since the whole world knows about her pregnancy project. Ha-ri looks cautiously optimistic but says that she can’t bring it up on day 1 of dating after they’ve only kissed. The team screams in excitement over the kiss and celebrate Ha-ri’s relationship.
After suffering through a loud scolding from Vice President Joo, Manager Kim sheepishly returns to his desk and answers a call from his daughter. As he walks outside, he tells his daughter, who wants to go to London, that he can’t take the summer off from work. Soo-chul has a similar conversation with his partner, who wants to enroll their young child in flute lessons. They both end their conversations in front of the company saying the same things: “This is difficult. I’ll talk to you later.” They both acknowledge each other, and as they walk back to work, they agree to grab a drink afterwards.
Ha-ri and Yi-sang agree to meet in the stairwell and creep toward each other. They find that another workplace couple (So-yoon and her partner) having staked their claim to the stairwell, and So-yoon knowingly smiles as she announces that the spot is taken.
Hyo-joo finds Eu-tteum eating his packed lunch at his desk, and he explains that he’s saving up for the ring. She suggests that he go for a less expensive ring, but he wants to confess with the best. He shares that this is his first confession and that he’s never liked someone this much. He wants this person to like him and his confession, and he knows that he’s stupidly in love. Misguided Hyo-joo looks touched and insists that they go out for lunch together.
As Ha-ri eats ddukbokki, Yi-sang notes that anything they eat together is delicious. He affectionately wipes the sauce on Ha-ri’s lips and says that dating in secret has a fun thrill to it. Yi-sang wonders if it’s actually a secret, since all the reporters and Soo-chul know about them, but Ha-ri assures him that her team is loyal. He thinks that Ha-ri will make it too obvious, which I totally agree with.
Ha-ri notices that Yi-sang is addressing her less formally (dropping her surname), and he offers to call her by another nickname, “cutie.” Ha-ri responds by saying that she can’t handle the cuteness but then proceeds to be extra cute. Ahh, I need Jae-young to cringe with.
Yi-sang worries that they’ll get caught eating together, but Ha-ri seems sure that they won’t arouse suspicion, as long as they’re not caught kissing. At the mention of the kiss, Yi-sang cheekily wipes his lips. Head over heels for Ha-ri, Yi-sang pinches Ha-ri’s cheek just as Hyo-joo and Eu-tteum enter the restaurant. When Ha-ri see her colleagues, she pinches Yi-sang’s cheeks so hard that he yells. She covers it up as a game of who pays for their meal, and Eu-tteum looks relieved.
As they leave, Yi-sang whispers to Hyo-joo that secret workplace romance is thrilling, and Hyo-joo looks excited by the prospect of such romance with Eu-tteum. She tells Eu-tteum that they should do what Ha-ri and Yi-sang are doing, and Eu-tteum blindly agrees.
Ha-ri apologies to Yi-sang for pinching him so hard, and Yi-sang compliments her strength. He takes her hand and tells her that he’ll be photographing Kang Hyo-joo (the celebrity friend) next month. Ha-ri says that she’s fine with it and roots on his professional career, challenging him to make her jealous with the photoshoot. Yeon-ho and So-yoon watch the two walk hand in hand and shake their heads at the couple’s inability to keep their secret. So-yoon says you can’t hide love, just like yawns, burps, and sneezes, because they’re all instincts.
Jae-young waits for Ha-ri to return home and catches the new couple holding hands and embracing each other before parting. He asks Ha-ri if they’re dating seriously, and Ha-ri confirms that she wouldn’t waste her time dating someone just for fun, especially someone she’s waited 10 years for. When she brags that they started dating yesterday, Jae-young huffs in jealousy and reminds her to come to Do-ah’s first birthday photoshoot.
Hyo-joo informs Yi-sang about a retake, and when he hears that Ha-ri’s order, he happily agrees to do it. Hyo-joo can’t seem to adjust to their honeymoon phase of dating, and she shares some sobering insight — that Ha-ri’s goal is to get pregnant but she’s observing a slower pace in the relationship because she’s a shy romantic. That puts pressure on Yi-sang, and he broods about Ha-ri’s question to him: What if he meets someone he loves and has a child? Has he never wanted to be a father?
The editing team have a separate chat to discuss Ha-ri’s love life, and Ha-ri correctly interprets her colleagues’ simultaneous animated typing as them talking about her. They all stop typing, confirming Ha-ri’s suspicions. Then, they receive a notice from corporate about Ha-ri being appointed the acting editor-in-chief, instead of a promotion to editor-in-chief.
In response, Ha-ri meets privately with Manager Kim and demands that he share what he knows about the editor-in-chief appointment. Manager Kim tries to deny any insider knowledge, but Ha-ri knows that the men in this company meet up separately and suspects that Vice President Joo publicized this notice without considering Ha-ri’s opposition because Manager Kim provided his consent.
Manager Kim acknowledges Ha-ri’s perceptiveness, and Ha-ri owns her sharp mind and warns him about her temper. He finally shares that Vice President Joo is looking externally for an editor-in-chief with marketing content skills. Vice President Joo effectively threatened to dismiss Manager Kim if the marketing profits dipped, so even though he thinks that Ha-ri would be the best candidate, he couldn’t sacrifice his job.
They commiserate about the potential of finding a new job at their age and stage in their career, and Manager Kim apologizes that he can’t do anything to help her. Ha-ri receives a text from Yi-sang asking how she’s doing in response to this notice, and she tells him not to worry. She hints that she’s about to cause some trouble and says that she feels more confident with him by her side.
Yi-sang smiles at the response and returns to his leatherworking class, which Ha-ri’s mom is also attending. Noting that Yi-sang is taking on hobbies during the work day, Mom asks what Yi-sang does for work. Yi-sang explains that he’s a freelance photographer and shares that he started finding new hobbies because life felt meaningless.
Mom, who started picking up new hobbies that she never experienced in her youth, relates to this sentiment. When she learns that Yi-sang isn’t married, she offers to introduce him to a property heir (lol, is that how she describes Ha-ri?). Yi-sang laughs and says that he has a great and beautiful girlfriend, who he needs to woo since she’s a keeper. Mom laughs off her disappointment, though we know she’s in for a surprise.
Ha-ri submits her letter of resignation to Vice President Joo and reminds him that she’s been with The Baby for half of its 30-year run. She interprets Vice President Joo’s temporary appointment as his judgment that Ha-ri is unqualified for the editor-in-chief role. Vice President Joo desperately asks who will carry on the magazine if Ha-ri quits and suggests a negotiation instead of an extreme response.
Unwavering, Ha-ri states that her promotion to editor-in-chief isn’t an option in the negotiation, and she accuses Vice President Joo of manipulating her devotion to the magazine. Ha-ri claims that she’s not resigning out of anger but to fight the unfair expectations — having children and being married — that disqualify her from the well-deserved promotion. She doesn’t want to set that precedent for her junior colleagues. Ha-ri demands that Vice President Joo judge her only by her skills and character, and if she’s still unqualified then, she’ll accept the decision.
Yi-sang runs to catch Mom and gives her a pain relief patch for her wrist. Mom looks touched by his considerate nature, and as he runs off, Mom comments that his girlfriend is lucky. This lucky girlfriend meets up with Yi-sang to vent about her resignation, and Yi-sang fully supports her. Ha-ri worries about her team preparing the next magazine, but she reminds herself that she won’t stand for this dishonor and disdain.
Then, Ha-ri goes back to worrying about whether she’ll be a good or bad example, concerned that she’ll actually get fired. Yi-sang continues to assure Ha-ri that she made the right decision and presents her with a keychain he made at the leatherworking class. The leather has the phrase “You’re right” inscribed, and that seems to comfort Ha-ri.
Distracted by Ha-ri’s relationship, Jae-young puts his stethoscope to a mother’s forehead instead of her child’s chest and even forgets to pick up Do-ah from daycare. When he arrives at daycare to pick her up, the teacher says that Ha-ri’s mother just picked her up, and Jae-young catches up to Mom.
Mom doesn’t mind picking up and taking care of Do-ah, but Jae-young feels bad for all the inconvenience he’s causing. Jae-young feels sorry for himself and guilty about his unfulfilled responsibilities, but Mom tells him to snap out of it. She warns him to screw his head on straight, or else, she won’t help him. Mom offers to take care of Do-ah and tells him to go back to work, and Jae-young sincerely thanks her.
Ha-ri nervously waits for a call from Vice President Joo regarding her resignation letter, and her editing team all lean in to listen to the incoming call. The verdict: If Ha-ri can bring back their departed subscribers, then she’ll be promoted to editor-in-chief. The team thinks this sends the same discouraging message that Ha-ri should quit, but Yeon-ho reframes this as an opportunity to showcase Ha-ri’s content planning skills.
Ha-ri agrees and shares a project idea that she’s been sitting on. The team works late into the night to complete the project, and the next day, they set up an event for their mom subscribers. Meanwhile, Jae-young tends to Do-ah at her first birthday photoshoot and waits for Ha-ri to join after work.
Fortunately, they all attend the event, which is a childcare quiz game challenging the moms versus Ha-ri with baby products as prizes. Ha-ri loses the first couple of rounds and suffers a few toy hammer blows, but she follows up with a few victories, including determining a child’s age form a photo.
Do-ah’s first birthday photoshoot is in fully swing, and to Jae-young’s surprise, ex-wife Jung-won arrives instead of Ha-ri. Turns out, Ha-ri informed her of the address for the photoshoot. Jae-young doesn’t welcome her, but he allows her to be a part of the family photo because he doesn’t want to make this a hurtful memory for future Do-ah. Jae-young looks stoic, and Jung-won looks lost as she holds her daughter for the photo.
After the successful quiz event, Ha-ri shares with the moms that working at The Baby for 15 years has given her the ability to know a baby’s age from a mere photo. She acknowledges that she doesn’t have direct childcare experience, but she says that she wants to show them both her strengths and weaknesses. She asks them to use the magazine as a reference and friend to help make childcare a bit smoother.
Ha-ri also addresses her public personal life and how she hopes to be an honorable reporter and confident mother through the subscribers’ feedback and understanding. 15 years of meeting mothers has inspired her to be a mother, and she vows to keep learning and sharing her knowledge. Ha-ri asks them to return, and the moms look convinced.
As Ha-ri searches for items in the storage room, she feels an eerie presence behind her. Eu-tteum eagerly watches her from the shelves, and Ha-ri freaks out, thinking he’s an intruder. She throws toys at Eu-tteum until she realizes who it is, and Eu-tteum apologizes for alarming her. Ha-ri laughs that she doesn’t dislike Eu-tteum even though he causes trouble, and that gives Eu-tteum hope that she’ll like him if he does better.
Eu-tteum clumsily tries to distract Ha-ri so that he can gage her ring size, and Ha-ri ends up offering her hand for him to try out different circular storage items on her finger. He finally finds something that fits and looks overjoyed. Eu-tteum tells Ha-ri that he wouldn’t have offered his sperm to anyone and only offered to share with Ha-ri because it was her. Then, he rescinds his offer.
Jae-young angrily confronts Ha-ri at home about inviting Jung-won to Do-ah’s photoshoot, and Ha-ri says that she did it for Do-ah. She didn’t want Do-ah to look at that photo in the future and associate it with her mother abandoning her. Jae-young asks if Ha-ri wants him to get back together with Jung-won, and Ha-ri responds that it’s none of her business. But Jae-young gets in her business and says that he doesn’t want her to be with Yi-sang.
Their tense argument is interrupted by Eun-young, and Ha-ri brushes off the argument as their normal bickering, barely noticing Jae-young’s irritation. Eun-young updates them on her sister’s reaction to her brother-in-law’s cheating, which apparently was already a known but ignored fact in their relationship. Her sister blames Eun-young for forcing them to acknowledge it, and she doesn’t intend on getting a divorce, especially since they have kids.
Eun-young addresses Jae-young as she emphasizes that a relationship can’t end with a divorce if you have kids. Then, she turns to Ha-ri to congratulate her on the new relationship, but their celebratory mood turns sour when Jae-young advises Ha-ri to take it easy with dating and not give her whole heart to Yi-sang. Ha-ri is offended that Jae-young keeps assuming that they’ll break up, but Jae-young reminds Ha-ri that she would always return heartbroken relationship after relationship. Ha-ri dismisses Jae-young’s bitterness, but Eun-young catches onto Jae-young’s emotional conflict.
Before Eun-young leaves, she advises Jae-young to hide his feelings for Ha-ri, who’s ecstatic about love that came to her after 10 years of waiting. She warns him that he can’t even remain as Ha-ri’s friend if she discovers how he feels.
As Jae-young despondently watches Ha-ri play with Do-ah, he recalls Eun-young’s word of advice to put an end to his feelings for Ha-ri if he wants to remain as a friend. Eun-young added that Ha-ri wouldn’t accept Jae-young’s feelings even if Ha-ri’s relationship with Yi-sang ends.
Just as Ha-ri picks up her phone to call Yi-sang, she receives a call from him. She marvels that he must have known she missed him, and he sweetly respond that he missed her more. They talk into the night about Ha-ri’s successful event and plans for their next date.
As Yi-sang sits at a park, he watches the children around him. He meets with his urologist, who notes Yi-sang’s difficulty with his first attempt at hormone therapy, but Yi-sang wants to try again. The hormone injections are required twice a week for at least 3 months, and Yi-sang commits to this for 3 months or even a year to get the results. The urologist asks if Yi-sang told his girlfriend, and Yi-sang says that he meant to but needs to tell her now.
Ha-ri and her editing team anxiously wait for their mom subscribers to return to the chatroom, and one by one, they all return. The team celebrates, and Vice President Joo stops by to congratulate Ha-ri. He summons her to a meeting with the president to finalize the decision, and he tells her, “Good job, Chief Editor Jang.” Ha-ri finally cracks a smile of relief, and her team excitedly celebrates the promotion.
After wrapping up work, Ha-ri meets with Yi-sang in high spirits. She says that she thought of him even more because she was having such a good day. Then, she says, “I need to tell you something. I love you.” Yi-sang tenses up, and he responds, “I love you, too.” They snuggle closer together and continue to be the cute couple they are.
The next morning, Mom asks Jae-young if he’s heard anything from Ha-ri, who didn’t come home last night. Jae-young asks Mom if she’s fine with Ha-ri being a single mom, and Mom admits that she wants Ha-ri to have a baby with a suitable partner, with the single mom route being an alternative. Jae-young asks if he should just live with Ha-ri and stick with her, as he’s done all along.
Though Jae-young has never been and probably will never be a considerable romantic partner for Ha-ri, I sympathize with his permanent friend-zone predicament. Almost everyone knows that he doesn’t have a shot with Ha-ri, and it must be demoralizing to be the underdog with no one rooting for you to follow your heart. I believe Jae-young’s feelings for Ha-ri are sincere, but I think he still has a lot emotional baggage to sort through. He carries a load of resentment for his ex-wife and guilt about raising his daughter as a single parent, and I think there’s a lot of room for him to heal. I think Mom, as a single parent herself, really understands Jae-young’s struggle, and I loved how gently yet firmly she told Jae-young to get a grip. As a relatively new dad, he hasn’t confronted and accepted the realities of being a single parent yet. He’s still learning how to bear the burden of his responsibilities and his emotional fatigue, so I don’t think he’s ready to be in the kind of love that Ha-ri wants — the kind that you pour your whole heart into.
Ha-ri is definitely pouring her whole heart into this relationship with Yi-sang, who has transformed into a sweet fluffy marshmallow of happiness. I love/hate the cuteness between the two, who are unbearably adorable in the best and worst ways. Despite the cringe, I’m indulging the honeymoon phase of dating between these two because there are definitely hardships ahead. The elephant in the room has yet to be addressed, and with Ha-ri’s viable pregnancy window is quickly closing, Yi-sang really needs to be transparent about his stance and ability to be a father.
Though the focus of this episode (per the title) was on the romance, I found that the saccharine moments of romance were balanced out with Ha-ri’s professional wins. Ha-ri didn’t pull any punches in her negotiations for the well-deserved editor-in-chief position, and it was cathartic to see her call out the bullshit excuses from her senior management. Even though she was a swinging pendulum of doubt and confidence on the inside, she stuck to her demands and proved that she has the skills and character for the job. Ha-ri would have overcome the doubt and concern about her job anyway, but I appreciate how supportive Yi-sang was without imposing his authority. He respects Ha-ri, and his unwavering support for her (even through painful cheek pinches) makes me hopeful for their looming obstacles.