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Was It Love: Episode 3

Life becomes more complicated for our protagonist as she’s saddled with an enormous debt and tasked with a nearly impossible quest. Her only option is to recruit her ex-lover, but that’s easier said than done. Hounded by a scary yet sexy creditor as well as a revenge-seeking, successful author, our heroine has no shortage of problems or men.

 
EPISODE 3 RECAP

During that Christmas Eve eight years ago, little Ha-nee learned that thinking of her dad made her mom cry. Ever since, she made the same wish every year: not to be curious of her dad. However, present-day Ha-nee admits to herself that her wish never came true as she clutches a book claiming that the man standing outside her house is not just her homeroom teacher but her dad, as well.

While Ha-nee goes through this crisis at home, Ae-jung meets with Dae-oh. Rather than negotiate their contract, Ae-jung notifies him of her intentions to make the film since this is her story, too. Dae-oh agrees to consider her proposal but has a question for her: “Where have you been?”

Ae-jung uses this as leverage and promises to tell him why they broke up if he works with her. Dae-oh scoffs at her bargaining chip since he doesn’t care about the reason that much. He claims that he’s best-selling author Cheon Eok-man and not the Dae-oh she used to know. He suggests a new angle for her and offers to sign the contract if she earns his pity.

She smiles at his mocking words and throws her drink in his face as her response. Dae-oh yells at her when she tries to leave, but Ae-jung shouts right back. She tells him that she didn’t come here to beg but to make a movie. She points out that his debut story is technically incomplete because it only has his perspective, so if he ever wants to finish it, he needs her help.

Ryu Jin calls his manager to save him since he’s stuck in a public restroom—a crowd of fans waiting for their oppa to return from his poop. Manager Myung asks who locked him up, and Ryu Jin thinks back to Ae-jung and replies, “The one that got away.”

Yeon-woo has dinner at Ae-jung’s house, and throughout the meal, Ha-nee shoots furtive glances in his direction. She tries to find any hints that might indicate his relationship with her mom, but Grandma stops her to ask questions of her own.

When Yeon-woo tells them that he’s still single and looking for a room, Grandma jumps at the chance and offers their spare room for rent. Ha-nee mentions getting permission from Ae-jung first, but Grandma waves aside her comment.

After dinner, Ha-nee chases after Yeon-woo in the streets since he forgot his phone. She asks about his relationship with her mom, which sends him down memory lane. Holding a pair of baby shoes, Yeon-woo pounded on the doors of a closed bathhouse. Smiling at Ha-nee, he tells her that Ae-jung is someone he wants to take responsibility for.

When Ae-jung comes home, both Grandma and Ha-nee inform her of recent events, but she doesn’t hear a word. Ae-jung asks for some space to calm down, and in her room, she screams. Grandma and Ha-nee stare wide-eyed, wondering who made her so angry.

Speaking of whom, Dae-oh looks for his contract with Thumb Film, and during the search, he discovers an old picture. The photo takes him back fifteen years to the day he confessed to Ae-jung.

After hearing his confession, Ae-jung pushed Dae-oh into the stream, and he glumly wondered if this meant she turned him down. She mumbled about not outright rejecting him per se, so Dae-oh put out his hand and asked her to grab him if she accepts. Ae-jung stared at his outstretch arm, looking conflicted, but in the end, she slapped his hand and walked away.

The next morning, the group gathered for a photo, and still awkward about last night, Ae-jung squirmed through the crowd to stand away from Dae-oh. Undeterred, he pushed his way through to be right next to her and said that he’ll grab her hand, instead. Ae-jung stared at him in shock, while from the center of the group, Ryu Jin watched them both.

Though Manager Myung successfully breaks Ryu Jin out of the bathroom, the damage has been done. His “two-hour constipation” incident is plastered all over social media, and “Lucifer” (aka, CEO Song) calls Manager Myung to yell at him for not taking care of their star. Ryu Jin is mortified about everyone talking about his bathroom troubles, but his expression changes when he sees a picture of Ae-jung’s back in one of the photos.

Dae-oh holds a special lecture at a college and tells the students that understanding emotions is key to good writing. As he goes through the different types of emotions, the scene changes to Ae-jung who puts them on display. She thrashes around while looking for part-time jobs that barely make a dent into her large debt, and hangs her head at the bank when her loan request is denied.

During the lecture, a student asks about his debut work but then throws a curveball by questioning him about the female’s emotions. She mentions the lack of insight on her character, which reminds Dae-oh of Ae-jung’s claim that he needs her to finish the story. Afterwards, Dae-oh is still irritated by the last question and drives to go see Ae-jung with his contract in hand.

Meanwhile, Pa-do waits outside Thumb Film with his right-hand man, Director Kim, who tells him that Ae-jung was kicked out by the owner because of missed rent payments. Pa-do thinks back to his encounter with Ae-jung at the hospital, which triggers an older memory of the woman who looks just like her. Not only are the two similar in appearance, but the mystery woman told Pa-do the same thing as well: she’s on the brink of collapsing.

Ae-jung grumbles while on her way to meet Pa-do, but as soon as she sees him, she forces herself to smile and greets him with enthusiasm. She suggests moving to a café when Dae-oh saunters onto the scene and gives Pa-do the stink eye. Pa-do recognizes Dae-oh as Writer Cheon and introduces himself.

At school, Ha-nee asks Dong-chan if he would recognize his dad if they suddenly met out of the blue, but Dong-chan doesn’t know how to answer because he already lives with his dad. Ha-nee clenches her teeth in exasperation, and explains to her unimaginative friend that she’s looking for her dad. In need of more objective data, Ha-nee creates a “paternity checklist” disguised as a tenant questionnaire and hands it to Yeon-woo to fill out.

Ae-jung sits at a café with her creditor across the table and her pain-in-butt author/ex-boyfriend next to her. When Pa-do asks if the terms have been negotiated, she tells him that she isn’t going to make Writer Cheon’s movie. Dae-oh objects to her wording since she technically cannot make it because he’s going to sue her.

Turning to Pa-do, Dae-oh asks what their relationship is, so Pa-do explains everything, including the 1.05 billion won debt she owes him. Ignoring Dae-oh’s shocked face, Ae-jung promises to pay Pa-do and storms out of the café.

Now that Dae-oh is all caught up, Pa-do asks him about his relationship to Ae-jung. Dae-oh calls himself someone closer to her than Pa-do, but the loan shark adds, “Though not enough to trust her.” Before he leaves, Pa-do tells Dae-oh that Ae-jung lost a lot of things because of him.

On her way home, Ae-jung finds an illegally parked bicycle outside her house and barges inside to inform the others. She stops at the doorway at the sight of a pair of strange shoes, and soon discovers the owner of both: Yeon-woo.

Ae-jung holds a family meeting and scolds Grandma for letting in a tenant without her approval. Grandma was hoping to play matchmaker, but Ae-jung cries about the rumors this will cause. All the while, Yeon-woo listens with a crestfallen face, and he is unable to say anything when Ae-jung apologizes to him and leaves the house.

Ae-jung turns to Sook-hee for solace, but without a proper outlet, she lets her anger out on her for allowing this to happen. However, after hearing Sook-hee’s explanation—their rent is overdue and Ae-jung has bigger money issues—she realizes her mistake and apologizes for the outburst. Sook-hee seems to accept her apology as she moves next to Ae-jung and lets her cry into her shoulder.

Dae-oh sits at his desk, still bothered by Pa-do’s words, and wonders why Ae-jung is not living happily after marrying a rich man. Suddenly, Editor Hong comes into his house screaming and announces a new offer from Hollywood for his debut work.

While Dae-oh hears some good news, the same can’t be said for Ryu Jin’s side. Apparently, his team jumped the gun when they bragged about his casting because instead of the lead role, Ryu Jin got the part of “bodyguard number three.” Definitely, not the same as the bodyguard.

CEO Song yells at her employees for messing up, but Ryu Jin makes a grand entrance and defends them. He claims that even small parts are meaningful and tells the CEO not to scold the staff since the problem can’t be fixed… even by her.

Taking the bait, CEO Song reminds him of who she is, so he challenges her to make things right if she’s that confident in her abilities. Ryu Jin leaves the office amidst whispers of praise, but once he turns the corner, he crumples to the floor and cries.

Ae-jung spots Grandma folding laundry in her room, and feeling guilty about earlier, she joins her as if nothing happened. Grandma scowls at first, but lets out a sigh, unable to stay angry. She feels somewhat responsible for her daughter’s situation—wondering if her fate as a widow went to her as well—but Ae-jung calls it nonsense.

Grandma tells Ae-jung that her stuff was moved out of the attic, and in her room, Ae-jung looks through her box of memories. She takes out an old poster of her graduation film festival, and remembers the time she produced a film with Dae-oh as the director and Ryu Jin as the lead actor. The three of them planned to go to Hollywood with their movie, and Ae-jung smiles as she watches her younger self in the behind-the-scenes video.

Speaking of Hollywood, Ryu Jin shoves his face with pudding—clearly not over the snub—while Dae-oh shares his doubts about his second Hollywood offer. He wonders if he would be a fool to give up this chance, but to Ryu Jin, his worries sound like bragging.

When he hears the project is “Love Doesn’t Exist,” Ryu Jin asks Dae-oh if he’s over Ae-jung. Dae-oh says that he is, firmly believing that she’s the one who’ll regret losing him, but Ryu Jin disagrees. Just like Ae-jung, he calls the debut work incomplete, which means Dae-oh will be the sorry one in the end.

Bloody and bruised, CEO Wang begs for his life, but the thug leader orders his minions to drag the CEO out into the ocean. Right then, headlights blind the group, and in slow motion, Pa-do walks towards them with Director Kim at his side.

Director Kim announces their duty to protect their borrowers until full payment, but the thug leader laughs and pulls out a knife. Pa-do intervenes and quickly disarms the thug before launching himself at the rest. As Pa-do singlehandedly defeats the thugs, the leader grabs another knife and charges at him. Pa-do grabs the blade without a moment’s hesitation and flips the thug over his shoulder.

CEO Wang witnesses the entire event, and seeing his chance, he runs away. Pa-do stops his right-hand man from pursuing, which makes Director Kim wonder if it’s because of Ae-jung. While bandaging Pa-do’s wound, Director Kim comments on his strange behavior, but Pa-do doesn’t answer and just smiles.

With so many people telling him that his first work is unfinished, Dae-oh weighs his options as he stares at his old college photo. In the end, he balls up the picture and throws it in the trash.

In the morning, Ae-jung looks up at the clear sky and kicks the ground since nothing about her predicament has changed. She runs into Yeon-woo who’s out on a run, and he offers to buy her a drink. As they sit outside the corner store, she apologizes for the other day, but Yeon-woo tells her not to since his actions were careless.

Wanting to cheer up her up, Yeon-woo tells her about his good dream last night and hands her a candy. After they part, Ae-jung sits alone at the bus stop, lost in thought. Eventually, she gathers her wits and eats Yeon-woo’s candy before heading off.

Dong-chan notes Yeon-woo’s high score on Ha-nee’s paternity test, but she still feels like something is missing. Since she can’t ask him directly—it would be too embarrassing if it turned out to be false—Dong-chan suggests getting a real DNA test, but those are too expensive for a middle schooler.

A lightbulb goes off in Ha-nee’s head, and after school, she brings Dong-chan to her house to act as lookout. Ha-nee finds her mom’s old cellphone, and from there, she discovers a number in the call history. She checks to see if it’s Yeon-woo, but it doesn’t match.

Having a meltdown, Ryu Jin pops candies into his mouth until Manager Myung rushes to his side and stops him. He tells Ryu Jin the good news—CEO Song is flying to Hollywood to sort this all out—but it’s not enough to completely calm the actor.

While Manager Myung leaves to buy him some medicine, Ryu Jin receives a call from an unknown number. He picks it up, thinking that it might be a reporter, but the caller hangs up. Instead, they send him a text message, and it’s from Ha-nee, introducing herself as Ae-jung’s daughter.

Dae-oh meets with a potential Hollywood buyer who wants to draw up a contract as soon as possible. They talk about grabbing some drinks, but Dae-oh’s attention turns to Ae-jung who just walked through the hotel lobby.

Ae-jung meets with a couple of studio executives who want to buy her copyright contract of Writer Cheon’s work. They argue that Ae-jung is too inexperienced for this project, but she shouts back, “I can do it!”

She asks if they can buy her instead of the contract, but the studio president doesn’t even know her name. Interrupting their conversation, Dae-oh appears behind Ae-jung and ruffles some feathers when he calls the other studio a “no-name.”

The president asks who this random stranger is, but soon regrets her words when Editor Hong comes looking for Writer Cheon. He asks Dae-oh what he’s doing, and he replies, “Signing a contract with Producer Noh Ae-jung.”

Grabbing her wrist, he pulls her out of the café, but once outside, Ae-jung frees herself. She asks if he’s playing a game and accuses him of tormenting her for revenge. Dae-oh tells her that it’s none of those things. He genuinely wants to her to produce this movie if she can really finish his story as she claims.

He tells her to work with him if she’s confident and extends his hand, just like he did when he confessed all those years ago. However, unlike back then, Ae-jung reaches out and takes his hand. As if to signal their new relationship, the fountains go off, and from a distance, Yeon-woo watches them. Unaware of their audience, the ex-lovers smile at each other as water pours down on them.

 
COMMENTS

According to an interview with the writer of Was It Love, the purpose of this show is to bring jollity and laughter to those who are living hard lives. It’s a moment of “luxury” and escapism for viewers as they watch Ae-jung rekindle her love life with four potential suitors who each have their own distinct charm. In this sense, I think the show fulfills what it sets out to do, and for those who need a light watch, this is the show for them. There are many faults with this drama—most of them stemming from the writing—but despite all its shortcomings, I must admit that there’s an addicting quality to the show. If you can get past some of the problems, the show is actually quite entertaining.

Granted, I won’t be the first to defend Was It Love as a great (or even good) drama, and for the most part, I agree with the criticisms lodged at it. The acting can be awkward at parts, and the scenarios feel a bit stale (do we still need romantic leads wrist grabbing their ladies?). However, there’s a certain charm to a show that doesn’t care about being realistic and completely owns up to its cheesiness. Since everything is a bit over-the-top and predictable, there’s an endearing quality to it all once expectations are adjusted. Overall, it’s a breezy watch with a plethora of male characters to appeal to a wide range of tastes. Is loan shark with a heart of gold your catnip or are noona romances more your cup of tea? Fear not, this show has both! Though fair warning, not all ships will sail because, let’s be honest, we all know who the end-game is.

Though romance is at the core of the show, my favorite parts so far have been about family and friendships. Ha-nee and Dong-chan are adorable, and their little side-story to find her dad is cute. I like how Ha-nee acts like she’s so mature but her ideas are just as silly as Dong-chan’s. Besides the middle school students, I also love the friendship portrayed between Ae-jung and Sook-hee. They don’t get a lot of screen time, but that quiet moment at her bar in this episode really made me wish that they did. While all the men in her life are causing her headaches at the moment, Ae-jung is able to confide with and find comfort in her friend. On paper, it’s an odd relationship (a tenant and her landlord), but clearly, there’s mutual respect and understanding between the two women that allows them to sit comfortably in silence as the other cries. It’s a nice reminder that friendships can be as (or even more) fulfilling and worthwhile as a romantic one.

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This show continues to be very, very fun, and Son Ho-Jun is slaying it! I feel like Dae-oh would be seriously boring played by anyone else. I managed to get my sister involved in watching this, and it looks like she's rooting for Mr Gangster Softie right now.

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Also, Sook-hee is only ever on screen for five minutes, yet she has my heart.

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Also also, as I'm going through a serious rough patch these days, I'm really relating to the unrelenting misery of Ae-jung's life. I don't think she's very interesting as a character, but she is certainly easy to root for.

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Well Im certainly sorry to bear about your rough patch. Thats one of the reasons why Fight My Way is one of my all time favorite dramas. It met me where I was in my rough patch and showed me that people can eventually climb out. I think Im finally on the tail end (instead of the tell end) of my rough patch but Aera and FMW will always be a light for the comfort and the rootablity it gave me. I hope that this silly little show can comfort and encourage you!

I think this show is doing what it set out to do. Its a nice distraction from the nonsense of the world. I do find myself wishing that the actress playing Aejeong was aa good as the actress playing her...daughter. Ha! Im not normally one to notice good and bad acting but shes distractingly not very good. But she brings an earnestness to the character that even if I dont always find her believable I do find myself rooting for her. If that makes sense.

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Ah, I have my own show like that! Something that happened to find me exactly at the right moment. It was Thirty But Seventeen. It lives in this interesting universe where people with scars will always find each other and get to heal. I rewatch it constantly because it just makes my heart soar, it's just basically perfect in my eyes.

Yeah, you know, Song Ji-hyo is like Hwang Jung-eum for me - they both seem to be 1000x more engaging in dark or melodramatic roles. I haven't seen a lot of Song Ji-hyo, but I remember her in This Week My Wife Will Have an Affair, and she did well there. But her body comedy and expressions here are just not the one.

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Yes for Gu Pa-do! Ae-jung can have Dae-oh, leave Mr. Scary and Sexy to us!

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I'm on the fence with this one... it looks pretty good, is it worth a try??

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Depends on what you're in the mood for and your preferences. I would say give the first two episodes a try and see if you like it. (Also, the fast forward button is your friend.)

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To be honest, i did get my expectation high and i am already disappointed. I wish to see a subtle gem like Familiar Wife but i get a glimpse of Lovely Horribly. Everything was awkward. Maybe i will keep watching just for the hope that the writer will have a surprise plot - like if the father is ryu jin or ae jung end up staying single and successfull.. There, i get my hope up high again

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>>> There are many faults with this drama—most of them stemming from the writing—but despite all its shortcomings, I must admit that there’s an addicting quality to the show.

I totally agree! I can't exactly recommend it to others because there are several "faults" in the drama... But I personally am entertained. 😅

I suddenly realized that the main plot (romance) is a bit all over the place.... Ha-nee and Dong Chan's friendship and schemes brings a sort of stability in each episode. Dare I say their story line is better written than that of their parents? Hehehe

I think the male leads are the ones carrying the drama at this point... Still find SJH's acting a bit too extreme.. But not yet irritating enough for me to stop watching.
Here's hoping it has enough "story" to keep us tuned in.

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Thanks for the recap @lovepark! I agree with your comments: this show does not compare to its predecessors story-wise, but I appreciate that it's something I can look forward to at the end of a busy work day. It's utterly cheesy, but so far the cringe and secondhand embarrassment were bearable, so I'm still enjoying it.

And besides, SON HO-JUN!!! He manages to make Dae-oh a jerk and make you root for him to come around at the same time. Though I also love softie gangster Pa-do and sunshine Yeon-woo. Ryu Jin not so much since he's coming off as spineless and suspicious. Eh.

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He is working wonders with Dae Oh. I was/am solidly loyal to our sweet teacher. But Daeoh will do a thing with his face and Im like...oh. Well shoot. I dont want to like you! "Just because jerks need hugs doesnt mean I need to hug them!" Has been my personal mantra since college. Hes trying me!

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I can't help comparing Dae-oh to Ban-do in Go Back Couple lol. I was firmly on Team Nam-gil (because who isn't) but dammit I went from hating Ban-do's pettiness, to sympathizing with his character, to desperately wanting him and Jin-joo to reconcile. I didn't leave Team Nam-gil because he isn't the endgame, but because Ban-do is just incredibly real with all the pain he's carrying beneath that happy-go-lucky facade.

That's why I'm looking forward to Dae-oh's transformation throughout the episodes, and we're already shown glimpses of this in Episode 4. It will take a lot of work for him win us over, but he will, and when he finally does, it will be sooo worth it. Provided, of course, that the writing continues to be predictable and doesn't take a super weird turn down the line.

P.S. Why am I gushing about Son Ho-jun in the wee hours of the morning?

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Yoire gushing about him in the wee hours of the morning because dramas do things to our brains.

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Oh yes, yes, yes, @CustardHopia I'm right there with you. I don't want any crazy weird turn in the plot. I just want the drama to pull me in and make me smile. I'll be happy just to feel Dae-oh's pain and joy and watch Ae-Jung melt back into love with him. So if Ae-Jung instead becomes the mistress of the gangster and the two children run off and join the circus while Dae-oh and the actor become more than friends and adopt the teacher, well, I'd be surprised. But I wouldn't particularly be happy. Surprise endings are just that, a surprise. It doesn't necessarily make the drama more interesting or worth watching.

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Ummm...that may not be THIS drama...but Id totally watch the one youre pitching. The loanshark is sexy. Id watch Aejeong be his mistress! The kids are totally carrying this drama and I would be down to see their shenanigans in the circus and a thropple with our other three men? Bring it on!

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Am loving each of the characters but agree that the overall plot feels a bit stale and predictable. Altho show got its own cute little moments, if I finish this drama it'll be due to the cast. That single track of tear running on Ryu-jin's cheek made me chuckle, it's so endearing that instead of soju, he chose pudding and sweets to drown his sorrow. But that does not absolve him from the suspicion of wrecking Ae-jung + Dae-oh, tho...

Ae-jung and Dae-oh are being too wiffly-waffly about their decisions to work or not work together, glad that's decided now. All their moments seem to be punctuated with one or both of them getting wet, LOL.

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I wonder if him liking Aejeong is a red herring and he broke them up/ fanned the fire of the breakup because of his and Dae-Ohs talent? They both have gone really high in their careers. Maybe he thought she would hold Dae-oh back. I only wonder because I find it hard to believe that if he had feelings for her so strong as to last for 14 years that he didnt look her up even once. Especially after he became one of the biggest celebs in the country.

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Since my wild theory of Ryu-jin's being in love with Dae-oh all along hasn't been disproved, it's very possible if he thought Ae-jung (with a baby?) will hold Dae-oh back. But then that makes him sort of a chaebol-mom to Dae-oh *cringe*

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Even though I've been irritated by Ae-jung as a character, I am watching this drama. It started to make me think about the desperation of single mothers and the stigma they experience, in Korea, at least. It also made me compare it to One Spring Night, which is about the stigma of single fathers. It's probably not a fair comparison, but it also raises a question. Why is it that Ae-jung is such a ditz (in Dae-oh's words), and Jung Hae-in's character, Yoo Ji-ho, has so much dignity? Different types of dramas, with different intentions, I suppose. But it makes me want to ask if the desperate single mum is a standard comic trope? I agree it's all in the writing. As an example, why, when the flowers come, does Ae-jung shout at the delivery person wanting to know who they are from? All you have to do is read the card that comes with the flowers!!! It's not too hard. But this situation is one small example of what is unnecessary in this otherwise potentially enticing drama.

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Accurate. Haven't even seen this episode yet but I feel like I alr know what to expect with the shouting about flowers 😂

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My gut feeling is that Ae-Jung is a ditz because the writer is just using the convenient stock character of airhead female who remains clueless to all romantic gestures from her hapless suitors, so the exasperated male lead can combust into a dramatic public confession of love by the end of episode 8. I don't think you can dig too deeply with this show. I'd attribute it more to lazy writing than societal perceptions of single mothers as a comedic trope.

A drama that portrays single motherhood with poignancy and dignity would be "When the Camellia Blooms"

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Can't you tell Ryu Jin is in love with Dae-oh?

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I'm for here Ha-nee and Dong-chan's friendship and so is Sok-hee Unnie!

There are times though that the gangster scenes take me out of the episode. Like how the gangsters in Strong Woman did xD

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In my opinion, if I haven't seen Song Ji Hyo's projects, I would have a different reaction to the show but I'm here to see her new show. I don't what it is. Lovely Horribly started out with a good premise but somewhere along the line, the story was all over the place. I still finished it but it's not really recommendable worthy. I don't watch Kdrama's regularly. I only watch shows by people I like or notice in my Facebook feed. I agree that Song Ji Hyo's acting as a very enthusiastic PD is kinda off-putting, especially since I keep seeing her in Running Man and this is way off what she does there. Probably, her younger self can pull it off but I guess I've been watching her for a long time. Energetic Ae Jung is not her type of acting. I do understand if that is how her character was written as. I do see a lot of her variety-show characteristics in these first episodes like the cursing scene or when she's crying or angry. So far, I personally like the feel of the show. The scenes with the grandma-mom-daughter combo are the ones that I personally liked and the men. Can't help it when they're such eye-candies. The show is really more on the idea of romance. A lot of it is not logical but there is a certain element to it that it makes me scream on my pillow either due to excitement or the cheesiness. It's not everyone's cup of tea but I like it and will see how Ae Jung ends up with whom or what she ends up.

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I thought Love Horribly was ruined by the ML's personal baggage and wooden acting.

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My current belief is that Yeon-woo is the "father" either as the strawman on the birth certificate or the actual dad from a "fling."
Ae-jung left college after her pregnancy with another man which she knew would hurt Dae-oh more than a normal break-up. Other evidence includes Yeon-woo's overprotectiveness of Ae-jung, especially around other men.
Pa Do's transference of his late wife with Ae-jung was strange, but it may be a way to convince him to find a new mother for his son. In his world, she may be the best candidate.
I agree that Ha-nee and Dong-chan's relationship is the best one in the series. It seems the most "normal" and mature.

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Watching this show, I am realizing why "Mamma Mia"'s story is centered and driven by the female protagonist wanting to find her father, with the mother refalling in love with one of them as a close secondary plot. XD I find myself more drawn to the kids and their shenanigans trying to find her biological father, and I cannot help but squeel because the boy obviously is uncomfortable at home, and for many kids like that, school is a haven, but for this boy, school used to be lonely with bullying. But Ae-jong's daughter has made it less lonely, and though she is bossy and silly, they are having fun. I mean, I looked at the teacher when the daughter gave him the sheet and left, and I thought he MUST know she made that up, but thought it was adorable like I did and did it to amuse her.

I am okay watching Ae-jung even though she is often selfish and stressed by her self-made misfortune, but the idea of Dae-oh grabbing her and and acting like he does annoys me so much, assuming he is endgame. He is being such a douche about it, and props to the actor who manages to make it somehow work without making him completely unsympathetic, but the way he is being a douche one second and then returning to help Ae-jung the other, it annoys me. It is like the show is expecting me to swoon at him for helping her and protecting her dignity at the end, when HE has bullied her and tried to harm her pride and dignity plenty of times, but because he turned around at the last second, it is somehow sweet. It is like Stockholm's Syndrome; he is mean to her so often, so when he is actually just a decent human being, that is suddenly meaningful and Ae-Jung happily takes his hand and smiles gratefully. I know I used to like that sort in my late teenage years, but I am just so confused why it is still so popular, and how that is supposed to be relaxing escapism.

I still enjoy watching the show, and it still is making me want to see what happens next. But the main thing that I dislike is the way Dae-oh acts and the way the show treats him like a main love interest, because he is often what makes me angry and some of the best moments are when Ae-jung actually puts him in his place, rather than when she swoons at his "charms".

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I agree that the wrist grabbing is off putting. It really is annoying. I went back and rewatched the last one (from ep 4 but not an important spoiler) to try to make some understanding as to why a director would want that done. It starts out okay as he is trying to draw her away from an angry group of people. But he continues to hold on and doesn't give her much choice as he pulls her up to the roof where there is privacy. I'd like to be able to explain it away so that Dae-oh doesn't seem like such a jerk, but I can't really. Looking back over the flashbacks they've shown of the past relationship, there does seem to be a bit of physical intimacy between the two as she isn't always gentle with him either. I have noticed often throughout the first 4 episodes that Dae-oh starts out being good to Ae-jung and then when he reads her reaction, he switches over to being a jerk. It's like he wants to be a good nice guy, but suddenly feels his esteem is being threatened so switches into jerk mode to avoid being humiliated. I don't really feel that he is bullying her. It's more reacting to her or to what he perceives as her feelings toward him. I think he has insulted her a few times without even realizing he was doing it. But the wrist grabbing has got to stop. It's intrusive. On the other hand, I thought throwing water in Dae-oh's face at the cafe was also uncalled for and intrusive.

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Oh yeah, I definetely think she needs to apologize to him for throwing water at him, but I think I biasedly dislike Dae-oh for being the way he is and showing signs of being endgame despite of it, that I want him to at least apologize to her first for his behavior. Because I feel if she apologizes first, he will act holier than thou. I don't know, something about Ae-jung being in the situation she is in, being dependent on these guys being charitable to her and being the opposite, makes it a bit cathartic for me to see her reply to his comments like that, even if it is out of order.

And yeah, I know about that wrist-grabbing in episode 4, and I hate it. The MOMENT she began telling him to stop or that it hurt and he kept going, I lost it. I think I am harsher on Dae-oh because of the fact that I think he is being mean to Ae-jung without apologizing for it, and hiding his insecurities and weaknesses behind that jerky attitude, but he is also very probably endgame, and I just don't feel like he deserves to be so far.

But I do agree that Ae-jung has gone too far as well; I don't necessarily like her character, and I admit, a lot of the time she herself puts herself in those difficult situations where she has to be taken pity upon by the men and get saved by them, so it is not like I am 100% on her side. Maybe that is why I am more interested in the children's plot, because Ae-jung's actions sometimes annoy me and Dae-oh doesn't make it better. But we will see.

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You make some good points, @pensola and I don't disagree with you. There are some beans here who want Ae-Jung to end up with the gangster, and quite frankly, he hasn't treated her all that well either. Although some of those were dream sequences so I am not entirely sure I remember "real" instances of him being mean to her. I think Dae-oh, on the other hand, has a lot of people wanting him not to be end-game just because it is the most predictable. So they are bias against him. But...in the preview, a different woman shows up and it may be suggesting that she also has a connection to Dae-oh. So this week's episodes might take up in an entirely different direction!

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I have no idea who I want her to end up with, either. Personally I think she should, instead of kindling or rekindle any relationships, spend more time with her mother and daughter, and help her daughter a bit more with her daddy issues. As I said, the core of "Mamma Mia!" was not the mother's romance, but on parenthood, with the relationship between the mother and daughter being the core, not any romance. And I think that worked very well. (It helped that none of the three exes were assholes, not even the endgame one who the mother broke up with over a "misunderstanding").

I think the gangster will be an interesting friend to Ae-jung, as both are single-parents with the kids having difficult times but finding friendship in each other, and sure, I like some escapist "bad boy craves the female lead in secret" thing, but as you said, he has not treated her well either, even if it is partly to Ae-jung's own decisions, lol.

Yes, I have to keep in mind that we are only on episode 4, so I try to word it as "possibly" when I say Dae-oh might be endgame. I fully admit I am biased and harsher toward Dae-oh, not only because he is endgame, but I worry that it will mean his attitude will be handed off. Sure, I want Ae-jung to own up to her mistakes and apologize, but that means that Dae-oh can't be bratty one minute and kind a second, and thus be scott-free from the other 59 seconds. So I must keep an open mind to Dae-oh, and it definetely helps that his actor is an expert in playing jerks without making them full-on awful. XD

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Her self-made misfortune is what is grating on my nerves. She may have had a hard life, and something tragic may have happened to her in the past, but the way she blows up at the slightest thing does not help her at present.

Also, who signs off a loan thinking it's a work contract? *rolls eyes* I'm rolling with it simply because Pa-Do's "missions" create tension and move the story along.

Dae-oh's bullying ways and his petty revenge make him unlikable in my eyes. Only an actor like SHJ could pull it off and not make me drop the drama immediately.

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Yes, and she is so quick to get angry at her mother, in front of her child, without considering others first. Actually, my favourite moment this week outside of the kids' paternity search was when the daughter and Ae-jung just talked and joked around. Because we see that so rarely, usually Ae-jung is running around trying to get out of her own mess (or get others to pity her to help), that we rarely see her be a mom. Even "When My Love Blooms" made sure to include scenes of the main leads being good parents, and THAT was a show where they frequently forgot to include the children in anything. XD

Yeah, I am forever amazed by the actor SHJ who manages to make Dae-oh into such a jerk, without making him absolutely unsymapthetic. I think I would personally enjoy Dae-oh much more if I knew he wouldn't probably be the endgame choice. I love to have characters that I love to hate, and if Dae-oh was just kind of that bratty ex-boyfriend who is still angry and grudgeful over the breakup, and acts pettily and sometimes violently (because I personally view grabbing someone's wrist and dragging them somewhere when they resist and say it hurts violence) but people actually hold him responsible, it would be easier to digest it. I am all for him and Ae-jung making up and fixing the misunderstanding between them, and maybe becoming friends. But so far, the way the character is acting and treating her, I cannot find myself ever believing Ae-jung would return to him.

Then again, we are only at episode four, who knows what will happen. Kudos to the show, as much as I drag my hair at what happens, I DO want to keep watching XD

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I could watch an entire drama with Dong-chan and Ha-Nee coming up with creative ideas to find the dad! These two are adorable. I love their friendship.

I don’t think this is a great show but it’s a stress free watch. I enjoy watching it if I ignore a few things (the wrist grabs need to end!)

And son Ho-Jun is really carrying this show, imho.

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Yes, the story of Dong-Chan and Ha-Nee is the better, more interesting drama hiding within this drama.

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Its not the best writing out there and yes it feels like i already know the ending but i do find it entertaining. ho jun will always have my heart 💕

But i wont say no to twists and turns. I would love more awkward mafia single dad scenes.

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Going to go on record here...so take out the cat-o'-nine tails to use on me, because when I first began watching Kdramas (this is #491) I loved watching the predictable, but required, prerequisite steps towards intimacy that happened before anyone discovered or confessed their feelings for each other ....so it often began with the wrist-grab when they first met as competitors or misunderstood enemies...then came the piggy-back (either drunk or because of a twisted ankle) as an acceptable cliché that provided yet another excuse for them to take a step closer in "skinship", which would later on ultimately lead to their first shocked "fish-kiss" where our hero leans in for the kiss while she is wide-eyed, her arms hanging limply by her side. And back then you KNEW the deal was sealed when, during the next kiss, her hands circled his shoulders. I know...I know...that was then and this is now...but when it's part of a long romantic tradition in k-dramas, please excuse those of us who don't find it off-putting. Clearly we still see it in dramas, so the 'clichés must still work in Korea although they are disappearing quickly to be replaced by a new female lead who's the CEO boss, excels at being 'kick-ass' better at everything than the male lead, often kisses him first and can yell & swear with the best of them. KDramas offer it all and that's why I love 'em!

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