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Start-Up: Episodes 13-14 Open Thread

After a quick three-year jump, and a lot of successful careers in between, we reconnect with our main players. While situations and bank accounts and resumes have changed, a lot has stayed the same — pesky little things like dreams, longing, and love.

 
EPISODES 13-14 WEECAP

Oh, Dramaland, I love how you use hairdos to signify the passage of time — it’s a little more subtle in Start-Up, but it’s still there. Parts and bangs are different, but really what we’re meant to learn is this: though three years have passed and all of our characters have been working really hard, they are pretty much exactly where they were three years ago when it comes to their emotions.

What did we miss during those three years? First, we learn that Dal-mi worked for In-jae Company and soon after became CEO of their subsidiary company that’s creating Tarzan, a self-driving and AI-powered car. Dal-mi is still the same: hard-working, big-dreaming, and a little desperate.

The Samsan Tech boys seem to have taken the biggest leap. They are the hotshots of 2STO, have been leading much of the development, and now they’ve earned a much-deserved vacation. I love that these three are nerds till the end — rather than lose sight of themselves, they are still this gang of three that are just the same as ever. Even a private yacht can’t change their pure-hearted and engineer-brained selves. The boys head back to Seoul for their vacation, and this is where we pick up our story.

One might argue that this time jump is entirely unnecessary. All that it has done is set some time and space in between everyone — only to have them boomerang back just as fast as you can expect. Dal-mi and Do-san have been busy pretending to be over each other, but they haven’t progressed even a step. Do-san secretly watches her Tarzan ads; Dal-mi secretly watches Chul-san’s vlog for snippets with Do-san. They’re clearly not over each other.

Another relationship that hasn’t changed much is the Dal-mi/Ji-pyeong dynamic. Ji-pyeong still hasn’t made a move in those entire three years. We know that Ji-pyeong is often with her family (yay, he now has a real family to play Go Stop with!), but everything has stayed entirely platonic. Yet, why does it feel so different? Maybe it’s just me, but I’m suddenly feeling some chemistry between them, and this, in fact, is the only thing that feels different after the time jump.

My timing on getting behind this love triangle is just about as bad as Ji-pyeong’s. With a little help from Yeong-sil, and some hand measuring, he finally decides to make a move on Dal-mi. However, Ji-pyeong’s advancement comes literally at the same time Do-san and crew return.

And they don’t just return like normal folks — they return in a blaze of glory. Dal-mi’s company has been hacked by ransomware, and they’re about to go belly-up (those fancy AI developers are really so feckless!). But with some serious fanfare, Chul-san, Yong-san, and Do-san fly onto the scene and save the day. It’s satisfying and fun to see the team together again… but it also feels like a bit of a stretch. However, I’ll forgive them, because what the story really wants is for Do-san and Dal-mi to be forced to interact again — and for Dal-mi to be at her most vulnerable (so she can’t put up a front again), and for Do-san to see her at her most vulnerable (so he can see through her front).

While our couple continues to dance around each other, some other things happen: the boys decide not to renew their 2STO contract and to move back to Korea to start something new. Chul-san continues his puppy dog pursuit of Sa-ha. Yong-san shows a lot of character growth and actually seeks out the counsel of both Director Yoon and Ji-pyeong (!) to help them decide what business move to make next. (It was particularly nice to see the friction between these two finally resolved.)

The friction that one feels the most, though, is the resurgence of the love triangle. Ji-pyeong reacts to Do-san’s reappearance on the scene with an almost harried aggression — he literally stops him from meeting Dal-mi early on, and white lies that they are seeing each other. Oh no, it’s this sort of thing that creates waves and waves of misunderstanding and drama. Thankfully, Ji-pyeong is a mature adult, catches himself, and admits his lie to Dal-mi right away. It’s important, though, that Do-san still thinks they’re together. He must mourn her anew.

This mourning sends him on a wild goose chase bike ride to try to get his head on straight. It doesn’t work, since he’s followed by Dal-mi — and she’s determined to recruit the Samsan boys for her company (on the pains of getting fired). Meaningful piggyback rides also make it difficult to forget someone.

Though there is clearly a lot of affection still between them, there is also a lot that needs clearing up. I have no doubt we will get there in our final week, but for now, we leave off at a pretty satisfying point. Dal-mi has successfully recruited the boys (and even Ji-pyeong thinks it’s a really good partnership).

Their self-driving car is pitted against Morning Group’s competing model, and this seems to act as our final battle of the drama: Seo sisters versus Director Won. He’s taken personal and professional jabs at them for a while now, and having both girls determined to beat him should be fun.

Speaking of In-jae, though her personality remains as cold as ever, I like seeing the two sisters working together. We even get to see a touch more of In-jae’s heart when we see her shed a tear over her now-blind grandmother, and decide to take back her father’s name (yassss!).

In conclusion, while I didn’t find the time jump and situational changes all that compelling, it did successfully deliver the driving emotion we are meant to feel: that warm, fuzzy feeling when the team is reunited. Woot! With so much experience and success under their belts, they are in an entirely different league now — and they’re free to ideate and create like the passionate entrepreneurs and engineers that they are.

With one week left, we’ve got some final battles and misunderstandings to clear away before everyone can live happily ever after, and I’m here for it. While I can’t help but feel this story is being a little more cruel than necessary towards Ji-pyeong, I’ll hold off on that rant until we see how everything shakes out in our final week.

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How can so much and so little change in 3 years? The significant change I liked is the Injae-Dalmi (Elsa-Anna? HAHAHA) dynamic: how they are efficiently working together and slooowly reconnecting as a family (I can't believe no one told Injae that Halmeoni is blind and it's too late for her to recognize Injae!)

I loved the songpyeon-making scene in the living room with Ji Pyeong! He so looks like a son-in-law, and I can't believe that in one of those meals or after, they haven't talked about his history nor the letters!!! (Oversight on purpose, writer-nim?) I can't with the love triangle anymore. Just give Ji Pyeong his happiness, and I'll be happy.

Samsan Tech starting a business took me to flashbacks of eps 2-3. I can't believe these stooges still believe they can cook up a business plan AFTER advertising and looking for investors. I'm so glad CEO Yoon put them in their place. But Saint Ji Pyeong!!! "As a man, I want to stop you, but as an investor I believe you'll be great partners" NOOOO! Huhuhu!

So Samsan Tech reunites in Cheongmyeong Company and works on the self-driving car. I really hope for a satisfactory ending for all, because what a waste of an investment if it wasn't.

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I can understand how Ji-pyeong was voted over Do-san as a partner for Dal-mi. But then, I could say that Do-san is braver. He met Dal-mi later fraudulently, but still he opened his heart. Unlike HJP who, even after 3 years, didn't do anything. And now, he's losing the timing again. I think being part of SDM's family will be his happiness, not as her partner.

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I agree. Dilly-dallying for three years shows JP wants to be part of the family more than he wants DM.

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Not at Jipyeong didn't do anything after 3 years. With his confession when they ate guksu and his conversation with Dalmi at her house (he said he wants to be a first person), I think he gave an effort to make Dalmi like him, but unfortunately Dalmi still not oper her heart for him. That's why Jipyeong ask her if she still uncomfortable around him,
but I agree with your last sentences. Jipyeong need a family, not just a love partner.

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Totally agree! I don’t think jipyeong didn’t make any move in the past 3 years. Being by her side knowing the fact that she hasn’t gotten over do san, it’s still considered a move cuz it’s a way of showing that he respects the feeling that she has

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It’s easy to say Do San is braver, but the stakes are lower for him. His family and friends are separate from Dal Mi. If things go south with her, he can just say that he never wants to see her again and still have his family and friends around to comfort him.

Ji Pyeong doesn’t have that luxury, which is why he hesitates. Some people may say it’s cowardly and therefore he doesn’t deserve to be with her, but I get why he does it. Dal Mi and Halmeoni are the only family he has, and for someone like Ji Pyeong, who’s never had anyone to care for him before, it’s probably very hard to risk a good thing now if he might lose it all in the end.

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i don't think the point of them not having a business plan was to show they don't have their shit together. it was a direct callback to the investors not taking them seriously three years ago. now that they are more experienced, have more resources and have made a name for themselves, the same investors are flocking to sst, contradicting what they said previously. it's meant to show how far sst has come and to highlight the hypocrisy of the investors.

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Yes but remember what CEO Yoon said. The fact that these investors want to invest without seeing a business plan are also the ones that will also be nonchalant about seeing them crash and burn. She said to chuck those business cards in the bin.

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Episode 13 is where I decided I'm stealing Ji Pyeong from @mmmmm. 😉 I'm even willing to learn how to play Go-Stop.

Although the Samsan team swooping in to save the day was contrived, I agree with @missvictrix that it's satisfying to see the whole crew reunited.

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You'll have to share Ji Pyeong with the rest of us, @ndlessjoie! Hahaha! We have a dimple squad here on DB!

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I choose to live my life in denial and pretend he's all mine. 😆

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No, he’s mine!

😥😰😱🥺😘🤣

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wait? I didnt know this
lemme join you guys
👉🏻👈🏻😊😊

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*pulling him back from @ndlessjoie and other Beanies*

Mom, I want him. I want him oh I want him!

*throw a tantrum*

🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

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I hope he's enjoying his popularity.

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You should watch him on 2 Days and 1 Night. He is so adorable. A few episodes ago ( I think before the drama premiered) he broke down in tears because he was stressed and unsure of himself. He started his career pretty late compared to others, so that seems to bring him a lot of stress (it has come up in several episodes.) He is so talented and as a fan, I'm excited to see his popularity grow!

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I've liked him since Strongest Deliveryman.

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@mugyuljoie is preciousss Don't know if u saw Chief Kim but he was sooo adorable there as well,liked his char a lot...Think it was his debut role...

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@miky88 I did see him there but I didn't fully appreciate his charisma until Strongest Deliveryman.

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He's so sweet and lovely in rl! I hope good things come his way. Instead of being a Hallyu star (too much pressure), I rather him become an A-List leading man a la Jo Jung Suk (his idol) PLS!!

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I saw the clip of him crying about feeling insecure about his career/abilities/etc :(

I think it was nice that he was vulnerable and open about this to share on national tv. It made him more relatable imo. That being said, he was a theater actor when he 1st began, and said he was going to be in theater until Chief Kim came his way. But even then, he wasn't going to continue, life is weird right cause things turned out well?!

Aww he brought up the fact that he's a late bloomer on TV several times? Or someone else mentioned it? It must be harder since Korea is age obsessed/image obsessed, so for an actor esp. like him that started out late, it must be daunting trying to live up to those expectations.

I just hope his agency doesn't try to market him as a Hallyu star like a Jung Hae-in and become type-cast. He def. has a lot of room to show, so I hope they instead make sure he becomes a great actor who works w/ great actors/directors instead of becoming just a heartthrob actor which is a disservice to his talents imo.

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@soulsearch12 Let's hope so that he will be one of those that stays in this industry for so long. The fact that he has started and has been working in theatre, and now he is also appearing in TV series suggest that he is very into acting. My opinion is that if a person is a late bloomer in certain field, many times it means that that is the thing they do really care about; they care about the work itself more than trying to meet peoples' expectations of him.

I'm hoping the best of everything for him. If things get tough, he can always come to me you know HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA 🤣

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@mmmmm Hey!

I think he will always act, whether its in plays, film, or tv. I want to see him debut in a film, and work with reputable actors!! Him choosing a play after Start Up speaks volumes about him trying to stay grounded from it. Oh wow, that is a great comment about late bloomer! I didn't think about it that way, I hope that his agency (He's the only popular male actor there) doesn't try to make him the next Hallyu star. That's way too much pressure for him (his personality while affable, I think that type of huge spotlight could be glaring on him imo). He has the acting, charm, talent, and looks so I hope he won't be a new flavor of the month though, and actually use the Start Up momentum to usher in a new leading man career. But rn, he is the heartthrob/rising star in Korea so I'm a bit worried lol.

"I'm hoping the best of everything for him. If things get tough, he can always come to me you know HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA 🤣" Muhaha, not if you get through first!!! Seon-ho babe, call me!!

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I think he is! I hope he stays grounded and humble as always! Fame is a tricky road, and with more fame means more things occurring to someone at a fast speed. I hope his agency and his mindset are stable to handle his newfound popularity. His next work (TV or Film), he chose a new play, but in terms of TV, he needs to choose well! I hope his next project is a success, so KSH can become an established A-List leading man like a Nam Goong Min or a Ji Sung, (Actors with clean records/no scandals/consistently working as Mains).

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I am so glad to know that many fellow beanies appreciate his talent, and more than glad that he is finally being recognized, but packaging him as a hallyu star would be limiting his chances to grow into a better actor.

I think his firm decision to stay with 2D1N will keep his feet grounded. Being a humble person, naturally courteous, and with so much support and guidance of his parents would keep him in a straight path. Do i have to mention that he was no ordinary college student? He rarely drank and attended parties. He is quite shy and that adds a lot to his boyish charms.

I really wish that his agency would take good care of him and make wise, guided decisions regarding his career.

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You can have the lead from Chocolate. He's all yours.

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Chocolate .. what? 🤔

ML .. who? 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

“ Can I have one Kim Seon-ho aka Han Jai-pyeong aka Good Boy aka U-sik... please?

*me asking a waitress at a restaurant*

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HAHAHAHA! What restaurant is this?!

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You can have Han Ji-Pyeong!

Personaly, I prefer clumsy Kim Sun Ho :p

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Rock, paper, scissors @kurama for KSH?

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Hey count me in! I want that lovable doofus from 2D1N 😂

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Uh did you see his body now in the latest episode? Jaw dropped :O I'm talking about that scuba diving outfit, jfc KSH!! You charming son a bish!!

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@soulsearch12, there was an article written about that in koreaboo. I'm amazed hahaha! KSH's buffed up physique actually made headlines.

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@soulsearch12

You should watch the deleted part of the first episode when Kim Jong-Min pours water on him. Even Dindin was impressed :p

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@shichybot Bahaha! For real? Can you send me the link lol?

@kurama I will look into these for 'research' purposes...Umm care to uh spare a link? Unless it's on Youtube.

Goodness gracious...is all I can say. Every day, KSH amazes me with his new talents...

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LOL. Not for a 'good' boy. Good for him for putting more into his health! It's distracting for us to see his transformation, but let's hope his fruitful labors will be shown soon in his upcoming project. Bahaha ;)

Thanks btw!

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Count me in! Let’s play this fair and square!

*waiting to snatch him from the squad and share him with @ndlessjoie.*

🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

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Thank you, but I'm not sharing. 🤪

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😱

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@jingbee, @shichybot, @soulsearch12 and @mmmmm

🎵 The Boys Is Mine 🎵

(Did I just reveal my old age?)

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Is that one from the series Glee?

I haven't heard of it before, but I'm not that much into music so.. 😅

But the (Good) Boy is mine.

🤣

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It was a duo between Brandy and Monica.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qSIOp_K5GMw&ab_channel=BrandyVideos

1998 😭

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@kurama Oh it's so cool! It kinda reminds me of M2M the songs I listened to when I was around grade 7.

AND you're not and never old; Beanies are friends 😁

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LOL :)
If HJP was not a fictional character, I wonder how many beanies will say "Call me..." hahaha

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Every. Single. One.

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The biggest lie in the universe is how someone as kind, handsome, wealthy, and chivalrous as HJP has not found a partner yet. Mr. Darcy, anyone? Seriously LOL. In rl, I can imagine being married with kids. Um, can we please have that ending for his character PLS? I want to see KSH in a husband/father role!!

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Right now, I am living in an alternate universe in JiDal Nation. But in all honesty, I kind of don't want him to end up with DalMi. My good boy is so pure.

I still can't get myself to watch the 13th and 14th episodes, and probably will have to wait at least a month after the end game, or until such time that I have come to grips with the undue cruelty being received by Ji Pyeong.

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Even @ndlessjoie decided to steal him from me in ep.13; there has to be many good things in that ep. You should watch them, so you can gush about him with us in the recaps. 😊

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He isn't taking any cruelty onscreen right now that I can recall. He's really swoon worthy in ep 13 and shows new mentoring skills in ep 14. Skip the negativity in the recaps and just enjoy watching him.

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Weirdly enough, the writer hasn't turned HJP into an evil character. Like he has his flaws yes, but its redeemable and he reflects back too. Mr. Han is such a cool, level headed, classy, mature gentleman. I would love to KSH do another classy/mature role in the future. His sex appeal is off the charts here!!

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i claimed him first!! you have to come upto my level (sad fanfic writer level) if you wanna touch him.

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😱 How can you say something like that? LoL 🤣🤣🤣

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Where Kim Sun Ho really stands out is in "Strongest Deliveryman," dimples and all. I really enjoy watching his character in that drama, no so much in this one.

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You should watch Crazy For You, if you still had not. It's a short drama with only 4 episodes. You'll get to hate the leading lady out of extreme jealousy. 😉

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I started Crazy for You, but couldn't get into it. I just finished Strongest Deliveryman last night, and I must say I couldn't wait for Sun Ho's scenes because he absolutely lit up the screen. When he was missing and no one knew where he was, I kept saying to myself, "why aren't they looking for Jin Gyu?" I missed seeing his character so much. At first he was a real villain, but later became so loveable.

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Yes, in SDM his character has the most growth until the end. I am with you in saying that he lights up the screen each time he appears. Isn't he mesmerizing?

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KSH is a real star. He has the charm, look, height, talent, and allure. He can be both handsome but also goofy too. Someone on another forum said that he reminded her of Brendan Fraser in the 90s. This guy has the ability to handle multiple genres, while showcasing his appeal. I hope he's going to be able to take his career into the next stratosphere!!

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I finished Crazy For You a wk ago! And it was super sweet and heart fluttering. But also, appreciated the frankness about dating. And the skinship, omona!! The apricot scene was actually better, altho I was like shooting that scene must've been awkward since he's all up her @ss. The mirror kiss scene, while good, could've shown more of his perspective, like they just cut to the mirror ball, instead of focusing on his face LOL.

Can you imagine him in a Something in the Rain or Her Private Life levels of skin-ship/romance??! I think he'll pull it off and then some. Argh, hope his next work can get a talented/passionate leading lady!

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I’m so happy to see Samsan Tech reunited again! To see Do-san, Chul-san, Yong-san, Saha and Dalmi work together again is all I needed after that time jump,

Saha and Chul-san are so cute and I love how it wasn't a coincidence when they ran into each other (I totally called it!)

It’s nice to see that the self-driving car which they discussed about three years ago is happening and I’m glad the three Sans will be part of it as well,

I’ve really enjoyed this drama from start till now so I hope the ending won’t disappoint, I’m not asking for much, just for all our characters to have a happy ending !

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Seconding your last statement and trying to figure out how they're going to give Dimples the happy ending he deserves.

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Me, too, @bangwon! I love this drama. And although I’m smitten with Ji Peong, I ship. Dalmi and Do San. Hoping Ji Peong gets a happy ending somehow.

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I'm so frustrated with Dal-Mi's growth... They skipped the part when she's good at doing her job to show us that she's still the nice girl not respected by her co-workers, who needs to be saved by Do-San or Ji-Pyeong...

Dal-Mi and Ji-Pyeong's relationship is so weird for me. He confessed his love for her but she didn't answer anything about it during 3 years : yes or no, it's not so hard.

Dal-Mi and Do-San's relationship felt forced in these 2 episodes with big events. It's sad because I don't think they need all the clichés events but more little moments together.

In-Jae is still forgotten by the writer...

Yong-san scenes were really good. It showed his growth and he finally understood that business is not for them.

Kim Sun Ho speaking about start-up stuff is so sexy!

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In Jae was permitted a quick big sister is proud smile in ep 13. I guess that's character growth?

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I agree. Even I am disappointed in Dal mi. Out of the trio, she is the weakly written character. We never really know what drove her. What did she choose to study in the university before dropping out? What business would she have started when she quit her job and applied at Sand box?

And yeah, why has she never answered to Ji pyeong's confession yet? I need time / I am not able to move on, anything would have been nice. She is not intentionally leading him on, but not giving an answer for so long also seems off. Especially when he is nothing but nice to her, always. Again, I believe this is the writing, because they didn't want to resolve the love triangle before the last episode. :(

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Now that you point it out .. yeah ... Dal Mi's character barely has any growth. I thought the writer's whole purpose of showing her be brave enough to apply to In Jae's company was for her to then learn from the best and be confident at her job. How is she still ok with being spoken down to by her subordinates?! I still like her spirit don't get me wrong, but every other character has shown that they gained confidence after a great stint in the past three years - the kind of confidence she should've shown. I mean, I personally don't think she got to be the CEO simply because she's In Jae's sister. There's no way In Jae would make a decision like that. She obviously earned it - why isn't that reflected in her confidence?

As for Dal Mi and Ji Pyeong ... the moment when Ji Pyeong decided to confess was unfortunate. She was already in another relationship. I think her 'no' was obvious then. After that, when the timing would've been right, I don't think Ji Pyeong took his chance. It took him three years to realize that he needs to take concrete steps to be considered as a potential boyfriend by Dal Mi. Dal Mi is not going to just wake up one day and tell him that. I'm sorry, but ... the responsibility of bringing up the topic again really lay with Ji Pyeong. Maybe a little bit with Dal Mi? But mostly with Ji Pyeong.
Do San on the other hand, always had clarity about how he felt about Dal Mi and he did not hesitate to say exactly how it is. I think this is why Ji Pyeong stopped him at the elevator. Because he knew Do San would do what he was hesistating so much to do. Not his finest moment really, I finally just had it with his hesitation, not being able to tell Dal Mi and not letting the other guy to do it either, like wth just get your act straight. But since then I've calmed down and realised ... Ji Pyeong's just as flawed as anyone and that's ok.
Honestly, this reminded me of the difference between Choi Taek and Jung Hwan in Reply 1988. Jung Hwan's only fault, the singular reason why things didn't work out for him with Deok Sun - was because he hesitated and Choi Taek was clear that he likes Deok Sun and acted on it. When it comes to Do San and Ji Pyeong also, it's really just that.

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"Kim Sun Ho speaking about start-up stuff is so sexy!" Pretty much anything KSH says is sexy. I was head over heels when he said to Yong-san "As a man, no. But as an investor, yes" paraphrasing here. But I love how assertive and precise he is as an investor, but he's also smart to not let his emotions get in the way either.

P.S: How come Yong-san and JP grew more than our leads? They apologized, and moved on. Even Chulsun and Saha's relationship is less hectic/annoying than DM/DS's.

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You get my upvote for that last line ngl 😁

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It boggles my mind that KSH is an affable/goofy guy in rl. But when he wants to be sexy, he really can be :D I've seen some clips of his previous shows, (Catch the Ghost, hello!), but his character/him in Start Up is on another level.

It blows my mind a bit lol that KSH is excellent and believable in these assertive/cold roles? HJP always knows how to say the things that catch you off guard. Something about technical jargon and smart analytical stuff said in a deep voice and coming out of KSH's mouth is so brainy sexy a la Sherlock? Man could read a telephone book, and I'll still just fall over from the swoons lol (I can't I just typed this out :D)

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He smiles, I'm dead.

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Mr. Dimples!!

Did you also see the compilation of him always messing with his hair? Or blowing his hair up? It's a sexy trait that he has. Did he and Robert Pattinson go to the same school of flustered "But I'm so sexy with my hair pushed back" mentality haha.

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Haha 😂

I really like all the start-up thema. Han Ji-Pyeong is the one who gives almost all the informations about how works a start-up. So I'm pretty focused in these scenes. I really liked the scene with Director Yoon and Yong-San when she said he had to find himself investors too.

HJP's professionalism makes him sexy.

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Peole think being smart but emotional asshole is sexy, but forget to appreciate someone who is nice and professional is even sexier.

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Can I just say your comment and @pohonphee's comment about HJP's professionalism is what makes him such an attractive character? I sorta wish they were just a spin-off show of his character. He is the Harvey Specter (Suits) of this show. "In the show Suits, Harvey Specter is viewed as a charming, confident, sometimes arrogant man. Harvey doesn't apologize for who he is. You'll notice that people recognize this and accepts this fact. He defines his realm." But like Harvey, Ji-pyeong is witty, smart, and awesome, and self-assured in himself. KSH hit the jackpot with this role!! It's those characteristics that make him such an alluring and desirable character. Smart is the new sexy!!

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Thank you for summarizing everything that I felt about Ep 13/14. I'm in the boat where I still enjoyed/loved Ep 1-12. However, the time jump was just stupid b/c it didn't change anything (minus monetary thing but meh).

Suzy always plays these type of lovey dovey characters in love triangles quite a lot right? I think as she gets older, she needs to choose more mature work. It's getting boring tbh, esp. since KSH is running circles around her acting wise.

DM/DS's relationship was filled w/ so many cliches esp. with how they treated JP with it was just cringe city imo. Too much angst/melodrama for a 3 month relationship!! In-jae did grow on me though! Kang Han-na and Kim Seon-ho have the more interesting roles, its a shame that they aren't the main leads in Start Up. Scenes with them feel interesting and are mature. Her finding out about Halmoni going blind after 3 yrs working with her sis is just ridiculous too. This show has gone south since the great first half.

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Only redeeming factors for me are the Ji Pyeong-Halmoni dynamics.

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Even those are becoming more scarce :( That being said, I wonder is JP going to even be apart of Halmoni's family? B/c even Halmoni herself, her loyalty to JP seems wavering imo.

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Yes No Maybe?
: D

i'm playing Superstar JYP NATION on my phone...

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Even though a lot of characters changed in 3 yrs Won In Jae is still the same ice cold princess with some amount of warmth to her. Her relationship with her sister has been an interesting part of the story that I wish we got more of instead of testosterone flying between the male leads. Kang hana can be so cute and endearing even if she’s meant to be icy.

I truly wish the misunderstandings between the main leads will be resolved because I think we’ve been going back and forth for a while now and someone needs to spill their feelings once and for all instead of being passive aggressive but obviously there is so much past hurt yet to be resolved so I can understand why they haven’t gotten to it yet.

On another note I’m hoping to see more progress between the iced vanilla couple next week because Saha may deny it but she seems to click well with chul san.

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Thank you @missvictrix for the recap.

"I love that these three are nerds till the end — rather than lose sight of themselves, they are still this gang of three that are just the same as ever."
YES!

"... that warm, fuzzy feeling when the team is reunited"
Agreed! I love the Samsan Tech gang!

"However, Ji-pyeong’s advancement comes literally at the same time Do-san and crew return."
Yes, what are the odds... Hahaha oh well, I am just happy to see him smile. He did tell Dalmi, though on a totally different matter, that he tries his best and concedes when he loses... And I think in these episodes. He had conceded, even if he was too late to try his best...

On a different note... Am I the only one who thinks the twins are the ones behind the ransomware!??! I do hope they will be caught!

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Totally with you - the evil twins have been running a ransomware scam for years! Justice Will Come...

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@kate88hammond That didn’t occur to me but now that you mentioned it, it’s highly possible.

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I too thought that the twins were behind the ransomware attack- but then told myself that it was just me being the suspicious and highly skeptical lawyer that I am.

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I thought that was so obvious - the way they insisted that the new guy had to work from home; the way the open channel for the remote worker became the open door for the ransomware; the way they didn't back up the files; the way they took off as soon as the Sans showed up; the way he wanted Dal-mi just to pay up. I was shocked that no one caught on, not even the Sans. I also was shocked that they could just quit. Weren't they significant shareholders by now?

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Yes it was!
I was waiting for them to be caught in that same ep... I can understand why Dalmi and Injae (and even HJP) weren't suspicious since they're not technical people .. But SamSan... I would have assumed they had senior roles in 2Sto, they should have found it suspicious that lead developers behaved the way those twins did, and informed Dalmi.

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i have the same feeling re: the twins. also while we're on the topic, can we talk about how striking the male twin is? i thought he was an idol at first with how he always stood out in scenes lol

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i agree. he’s gorgeous. i searched him up too, to see if he was an idol. even though at first i thought he was crushing on do san.

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Anybody else wonder if the evil (?) Defector Developers might have planted the ransomware??? That way they could give themselves an excuse to leave and help their new employer win.

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And they left the port open.

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Yes. I hope they get some karma before this ends. @kdragon agrees.

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They let a new developer work remotely.. and they were upset when the Samsan Tech boys came.

The Samsan tech boys did say at the start that these developers were usually after the money so they were surprised to see them in Sandbox.

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Yea I guess everyone at this point is convinced the twins have always been the ransomware hackers. Their characters' introductory description during the hackathon was that these two were always just in it for the money, anyway.

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I think that many of us think that.

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YASSSSS it was sooo obvious!!! from denying they went elsewhere for lunch (and told DM that they had lunch at the Sandbox Cafeteria), to NOT doing anything when the Tarzan program was hacked, I am 200% sure it was them. As per The SamSan boys, they were just after the money and they were good at their craft. If they were experts, how come they didn't do anything with the hacking? In-jae must be wise enough to notice that.

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I believe they were responsible for the ransomware event way back involving Chul San.

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3 years and non of the characters have grown or little bit changed!!! These guys might have worked very hard in Silicon valley but they still seemed like they were on holiday during that time !!!

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I'm just frustrated that 3 years happened and Jipyeong and Dalmi moved from step one to step two. At least they now have a common ground that is family. But romantically - while I do respect the giving space and all that, three years wow. I wanted to scream NOTHING??? But alas, that's why Jipyeong is second lead. Lol.

I can't believe I missed the Saha - Chulsan dynamic. Well - I didn't really miss it - we literally had a week equivalent of the three years. But they're so cute. I'm rooting for them.

Again, three years and nobody told Injae that Halmeoni is going blind. I was like -- nobody told her?? Not even in passing??? Not even Dalmi?? I mean I assumed since they were together everyday, their relationship must have improved (it did, actually). But eh?

Getting Yongsan as the CEO was a nice touch, and perhaps one show of maturity. He was willing to get advice even from Jipyeong and I'm going to assume because he realized that while his words are sharp and unkind, he gives the most realistic professional advice. I think I prefer him to be their CEO over Dosan in case they do proceed with their own business. He's level-headed and lets go of his pride when necessary. He seeks advice and doesn't move on his own because he's a beginner and he knows it. I got chills watching that scene.

Still rooting for Jipyeong x Happiness though, more than anything!

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Yes, I agree that Yong-san was a great choice. I loved the scene where both he and Ji-pyeong apologised to each other and then moved on. There was real honesty in that scene (obviously one of the big themes of the drama here, but they're doing it really well by giving great dignity to scenes where honesty is front and centre).

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yongsan has been portrayed as sharp and emotionally intelligent from the very beginning. it was good to see that allowed him to grow into a ceo, who is showing promise.

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Whatever the three years have done, they’ve made Ji-pyeong emerge as a thoroughly lovely human being. The way he is now scrupulously honest with Dal-mi – as far as phoning her immediately when he’d mislead Do-san about their relationship so that she would have no surprises coming her way. How he made it clear in the car conversation that he would still rather she pick him than Do-san but understood it was her choice to make. The way he apologised sincerely to Yong-san for his role in his brother’s unhappiness and the time he gave to mentor Yong-san honestly in the best thing to do for the Samsan brothers – although it would cost him personally. His relationship with Halmoni’s family and the way he clearly loves being part of it all. The way he still does what he can to make Dal-mi’s life easier – such as bundling irritating men into lifts and scaring them off. He has turned out to be simply delightful. (And respect to the team who are dressing and styling him superbly!) The writer seems to be steadily showing us that he is the older brother here, not the romantic interest, and although that will be a blow for him, he might get through it…

…if it wasn’t for Do-san. Clearly that is one relationship which is not going to be miraculously healed (which is authentic). But when Do-san re-starts his relationship with Dal-mi, Ji-pyeong loses a lot: how can he continue to hang out comfortably at Halmoni’s house if Do-san and Dal-mi are there? He’ll no longer continue to be able to visit Dal-mi’s office or phone her to keep an eye on her without facing backlash. And the DoDal relationship will be in his face each day at work, with the regret that he didn’t “swing the bat” a bit earlier. He will lose out a lot. I’m struggling to see how he can have anything other than a fairly hollow ending. Can anyone wave a magic wand and show how it could be a happy and still authentic (which is my non-negotiable here) ending for him?

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This! Given how uncomfortable it would be for Ji Pyeong to be part of the family, how does he get a lovely happy ending?

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"…if it wasn’t for Do-san."
Why did he pick that name that fateful night with Halmoni... of all names... 😅

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Was almost teary eyed when I was reading this because I only hope for Jipyeong’s happiness and nothing else and yet - there is the big question of HOW can he get his happy ending? All points to Dalmi and her little family and yet he can (and perhaps will on a very sad note) lose all of that when Dosan enters the picture. And it all goes back to why that name, why did he set it up to be that way.
I kept thinking of how Jipyeong’s character and character development is male lead material and yet still written as second lead. Sigh.

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I've always thought he was a better match with In Jae, which would allow him to stay with his beloved grandma.

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my problem with his apology to yongsan was that it took yongsan apologizing first to get it out of him. so that scene to me highlighted yongsan's growth and maturity than hjp's.

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It's possible that the writers will put In Jae and Ji-Pyeong together romantically as they both are very lonely and both a part of Grandma's family. They both are successful professionals and do have some things in common. That would allow JiPyeong to continue to spend time with Grandma and would end (eventually) the pain of DalMi and DoSan love relationship. Although that might be a move that would make the writers seem a little pathetic, as far as the story goes, it would solve some of those problems that will make JiPyeong alone and lonely if nothing good happens for him.

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Good call @zzthorn - that makes sense. And maybe I could ignore the "settle for second best" aspect of it. Maybe...

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There would be absolutely nothing second best about that pairing- quite the opposite. Both are strong people that need a strong partner to be happy. In fact they are better partners for each other than they would be with anyone else.

Both of them have a fundamental honesty that would allow them to build a real trust relationship. Both are lonely in part because of the shells they have grown- and both would naturally shed those shells in the presence of the other as they come to trust each other. Their path to happiness lies in first becoming friends before becoming lovers.

Her mom would love the security of In-jae having a capable man while Grandma would love for her Good Boy to find happiness. So there is built in support for that couple.

Far from being second best that couple would have the very best in the end. In the long run JP would come to bless the day that Do-san took Dal-mi off of his hands.

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The writer messed up big time!! I don't think she expected this much outpour of love for HJP, and KSH's portrayal of him to get this much traction! 3 yrs, and no change to their relationship, lol unbelievable. Plus, why not just from the start given JP/IJ a relationship instead of using JP as a pawn to set the 2 leads up?

JP continues to be such a great/memorable character, but it hurt to see such a strong character reduced to a cameo as his arc feels like it came to a close Ep 14. Meh. Only finishing the show b/c I spent too much time on it, and for JP's end.

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I think the issue is developing HJP's back story so much in the early episodes. Maybe if there'd been equal time given to Do San's character it would've been less an issue.

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I also think that we see Do-san constantly say "Woe is me, my life is hard" attitudes. When he is surrounded by a huge family, has friends, and grew up surrounded by love and warmth his entire life. Meanwhile, Ji-pyeong has never received that type of love, but he never goes around saying that people need to feel bad for him (As in writer putting it out in the show). Dunno? Plus JP's character is more assertive, and says the most applicable things that can be applied in rl in the show. I think that backstory, his charisma, the amazing words he's given, and KSH himself that have made his role such a huge presence on-screen. He practically stole the show away from the bigger names. I mean, when does that happen?!

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I think Do San was given a harder road than that because he believed his father only loved him for his intelligence and Do San didn't feel that he was as intelligent as those around him thought he was. Plus he had it rough once he went back to the grade level that matched his age. I just think this was less felt and developed than JP's back story. And dimples + charisma is why I'm Dimplecentric©.

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I also think that while we have known JP from the very beginning, we only got to know DS when he was about to fall in love with DM. After that, DS we all know is the DS who’s been in love. Though we also saw glimpses of him in the past, it’s not enough to make me root for him because we are also seeing how JP is living his life at the same time. I agree that if time had been given to DS character more, it’d have been easier for me to emphasize with him more than this. I want to also know him as the character in his own right, not only the him who has always been in love with DM.

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Wow. At this point I'm just annoyed with the writer. She has managed to waste potential for character growth, talented actors and everything else that was good about this show. The only good thing that remains is the Samsan trio. I cheered when the team got back together. I legit had a huge smile on my face. Other than that, everything else seemed forced.
PS: Sa Ha and Chul San are the real OTP and that is the only truth. They are so cute, I might just pass out.

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Bear with me while I rant a bit about ransomware and types of backups... In the middle of the ransomware panic and discussions "Did you take backups?" and "You should", one of the good guys said "Is it that hard to sync files between two servers?"

Sorry, but file syncing may be great for protecting against hardware failures, and if the servers are far apart also against fires, earthquakes & lightning strikes, but unless it is done really well it may not protect against ransomware. When the baddies encrypt your files, the changed versions could be copied over to the other servers and you just get two copies of worthless junk instead of one.

Probably the best defense is OFFLINE backup. Copy everything to removable drives (or tape, etc), unplug them (safe against hackers) and carry them to another building (in case of fire, etc). Stick them in a fireproof safe if you have one, but even in a garage or desk drawer is much safer than connected to any computer. It may seem like a pain, but I used to be responsible for backups at work and I carried backups off-site after work every single working day for 24 years. Grrrr.

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Yes! Even cloud storage back-up, which is popularly practiced nowadays, is not immune to ransomware. Physical back-up is a pain, but needs to be done.

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Thank you both for mentioning the need for offline backup. The key is that this must be practiced DAILY (sorry Lord Cobol, I know it was a pain but your company knew what it was doing).

And shichybot is right that 'the cloud' offers very little real protection against ransomware and other forms of hacking.

So how does a lawyer know this? Believe it or not but the need to protect electronic data and legal work product from these things is now an actual part of a lawyer's professional responsibilities- it is literally a part of our Code of Conduct. When I was admitted to the practice of the law (long ago) we had not even heard of these things. Now we have to take courses in this stuff.

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A lot of the IT guys I encounter really balk at this when we do audits of their SOPs. You could not believe the many non-conformances we gave out because of this. One client stood their ground and invested in three servers for their data, but unfortunately when a fire broke out, all were destroyed. Back-up must be done offline and offsite.

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FWIW, while I was carrying backups around I was also department head, aka Lord High Computer Geek, and it wasn't so much "company knew what it was doing" as I knew what I was doing.

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This mourning sends him on a wild goose chase bike ride... Meaningful piggyback rides...

But he left his bike. It's probably still there rusting :(

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It looked like a really expensive bike at that

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This sounds bizarre, but couldn't he have piggybacked her AND ridden the bike at the same time?

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I dont think that would have been possible but its dramaland so maybe

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OMG you really made me laugh with that picture in my head. Wow!

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Now I want to see this.

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And his parents had no shame to send a poor girl in suit in the moutains :p

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Isn't she mature enough to go home and change into sneakers? Oh, I forgot. All Dal-mi seems to care about is how she looks when she meets Do-san. Not who she is, not how he has been, but how she looks....

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It’s her beauty that attracts Do-san in the first place, so she probably knows what she’s doing.. 🤣

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Continuity isn't Kdrama's strongest suit. I love it when it's bright daylight in one scene and dark as midnight in the next--I just scratch my head in wonder.

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I wish she had ridden on the back of his bicycle. It would've still achieved its purpose of her not walking on her skinned knee and bringing them closer together with her hands around his waist. Show already filled its piggyback ride quota when Do-san piggybacked a drunk Dal-mi.

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At this point, I'm just done with the main leads and their romance arc ("Quite tear-jerking" ala In-Jae) and I find myself looking forward to the finale weekend as I root for all the side characters.

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You know what I HATE?! The fact that NONE of the conflicts that were important to the plot have been done any justice. We got no clarity as to HOW Dalmi and her mom are living peacefully now? What about In Jae and Dalmi? Have they even cleared out the issues from their childhood? They spent almost half an hour on the simple story behind the sandbox name and logo being a memory. But now, they’re all kinda chill without having said anything to each other? Will we ever know? Or will this show suddenly now just simply focus on the love triangle that only grows more and more futile every second? Also why was there no real emotion Dal Mi felt when her programmers literally betrayed her so bad lol. Even the night she and Do San spent at that countryside house wasn’t really detailed enough for us to know where that conflict went. And really, I’m just holding on for what this show HD been up until ep 10 because they’ve made so many frustrating decisions since.

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What's ridiculous is that Yong-san and Ji-pyeong got a moment of self reflection, honest conversation and resolution. But you know what happened off screen? Like you said, Dal-mi coming to terms with her mother who ABANDONED HER, and Dal-mi making peace with In-jae, after having spent 12 episodes showing that Dal-mi hasn't been able to emotionally process the events from her early childhood. Honestly, I thought Dalmi-Injae resolution was the second most important character dynamic in this show (first, but okay this is a k-drama).

Also, Do-san tells Dal-mi please leave one minute and in the next screen he is piggybacking her? What the hell?

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Kdrama dialog always has the characters saying things they don't really mean--and it has them saying it with such conviction! It is truly one of the most irritating things about the scripts, and it happens in drama, after drama, after drama!

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@asterell I don't know how much you fast forwarded through the scene of Dosan and Dalmi at the at the mountainside, but it didn't just flash from him telling her to go and snapped into him giving her a piggyback ride.

The whole flow clearly shows them having conversation, trying to sort things out and Dosan had clearly softened by the time Dalmi fell asleep which was when he wrapped her injured knee and gave her his shoulder to lean on, figuratively (by agreeing to work on Tarzan with her) and literally (by giving her the comfort that she needs). There's also the whole epilogue with Dosan's mother explaining about the possible scenario and different levels of likelihood of them getting back together.

The piggyback ride basically affirms that he still cares for her deeply and they're back to the level of comfort they used to have with each other on a personal level - unless Jipyeong tries to jeopardise that yet again.

Honestly, people should just enjoy watching the show in the flow that it is intended to be. Clearly I don't like Jipyeong but I don't need to fast forward the scenes involving him as I need to understand the context and flow of the whole story in the episode.

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couldn't have said it better myself. dosan softened bc dalmi said she had a hard time too. dosan was under the impression that he's the only one who's been crippled by heartbreak, but that was the first indication from dalmi that she had struggled too. of course, he would take pause and give her room to stay after that revelation. what's great about this whole sequence is that dosan still does not know that dalmi is not, in fact, dating hjp. so he agreed to be part of cheon myeong company and invest, knowing he doesn't stand a chance with her. he needed to know that the time they shared did mean something to her, but his decision to join them was driven by dalmi's business plan and vision.

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My pt was that I would have liked to have seen the final conversation, instead of the build up only.

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Yes, I felt that the conversation I was most interested in between Dalmi and Dosan, happened off stage, which was lazy writing. I experienced it as you did, - why is he piggybacking her? - with no fast forwarding on my part.

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Because he is the male lead.. and his heart breaksssssssssss if FL gets as much as a prick from a thermocol needle

:D

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If you had not fast forwarded the episode, you would know that Dalmi had injured her knee which Dosan helped to patch up that night. Since she's still having a bit of difficulty walking the next morning because of the injury, Dosan carried her via piggyback.

The sequence is there in the episode. Look it up.

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@maisara272 asterell and bbstl are talking about a "Conversation." Piggybacking shows a level of comfort which they would have reached after a conversation. The conversation in which he agreed to work with her. Which they didn't show. Everyone saw her injury lol. This isn't about the actual reason she couldn't walk. No need to sound so condescending. This is not even about Dosan, so I don't understand why comments sound so rude. Please be a little less sarcastic. This isn't the vibe that dramabeans is about.

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@velvetstuff the question asked by was "why is he piggybacking her" so I'm not sure without mentioning about her injury what other possible reason would rationalise the purpose of him taking her on a piggyback ride other that practicality and minimising the physical discomfort due to the injury?

Had Dosan took her on a piggyback ride out of the blue, without the context of her being injured, he would've been negatively criticised for example, making the excuse for any skinship with Dalmi or for no real reason except because he's the male lead and some has commented a "sensitive" one at that.

I am pointing out the obvious and in the spirit of fairness and justice against sarcasm, I would appreciate if you can also call out the others here who have also made sarcastic comments :)

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No I don't think it's bad writing. We just weren't shown the affirmation itself but everything leading up to it
and everything right after it was was probably shown. Maybe more could be shown next ep idk. Maybe because I have seen this tactic used a lot of times I don't think it bad writing. All DM wanted to hear was the yes only that was implied. Could have more been shown? Maybe idk. I personally don't think it was needed. Ofcourse the piggy backing happened due to her injury. I just loved that scene.

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"While I can’t help but feel this story is being a little more cruel than necessary towards Ji-pyeong, I’ll hold off on that rant until we see how everything shakes out in our final week."

Because of this I stop after episode 13. I want to see how the show will bring Ji Pyong to us. Really, I don't want to see a pathetic Ji Pyong chasing Dalmi for the entire episodes till the end. He must have a better ending if it's not with Dalmi.

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The writer treated KSH/HJP so dirty!!!

Honestly, stop the stupid love triangle. And let's just move on!! I want HJP to move away from this toxicity, and find someone who actually cares about him and loves him (Even Halmoni's loyalty is getting smaller and rarer by the second rme). DM is just bland, he deserves better. I can see him with IJ at the end, but that might be awkward since they're sisters. Or LBY's character, which would be sweet. Let's just give HJP a happy ending PLS!!?

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I Love SO many things about 13 and 14. There aren’t enough words to describe how much I love 2020 Jipeyong (To be fair I loved him in 2001 and 2016 as well.) Director Han is a complete 7 course meal!!!
I also love that Dalmi is still as resilient as ever, hard working and able forgive her mother and get past her childhood issues with Injae and work cohesively.
Even though Injae has had relatively lesser screen time, she owns every frame she’s in. I’m glad she’s finally opening herself to her family.
I also love that Dosan has grown up. He’s introspective, he’s calm, he’s hasn’t cried, but he’s possibly still lying though. I looked so closely at his face when he told Dalmi about Noongil’s investor, and knowing that Jipeyong was in the 2STO office before he got there only furthers this nagging doubt. Anybody else saw through the facade?
Ps: I still retain what my comment said on November 10, and I believe that ending will come to pass. If not, send me cherry pie would you. I’ll humbly eat it.

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What about Dal-mi lying? Why is it OK for her to pretend her company isn't good enough for the Sans, when she's just protecting herself from having to see Do-san? Why can she lie to protect herself but he can't?

I thought Do-San was very honest when he said he didn't want to see her again because he didn't want to be confused anymore. I'm glad Dal-mi had to suffer a little on her quest to recruit him. She deserved it.

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