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You Are My Spring: Episodes 3-4 Open Thread

In the aftermath of a disturbing and tragic event, our heroine tries to get back her equanimity. With the help of her kind-hearted psychiatrist neighbor, friends, and family, she slowly gets back on her feet. But it’s not as simple as it sounds, because this drama has a pocket full of twists at the ready, and it’s not afraid to use ’em!

 
EPISODES 3-4 WEECAP

Two weeks in and I think it’s safe to say You Are My Spring has its recipe already perfected: a slow and thoughtfully-paced plot that works its way up to a hair-raising twist at the end of each episode. To put it bluntly, I can’t get enough. I wait eagerly for the build-up of each twist, and I haven’t been disappointed yet.

At the end of last week’s cliffhanger twist extraordinaire, we saw Chae Joon jump to his death from an eerie, abandoned parking garage. Both Young-do and Da-jung were nearby, and both are shocked, but really only one of them truly surprised: Da-jung. While Young-do knew that Joon was a sociopath, Da-jung was just starting to enjoy her “some” relationship with him.

Seo Hyun-jin lives up to her name this week and gives such a nuanced performance as we follow Da-jung through her sea of emotions. From grief to fear to humiliation to horror — it’s all really well-depicted. The shared experience brings Da-jung and Young-do closer, and though there’s a bit of hesitation between them, there’s also a bond that can’t be denied (and a cute road trip to the sea!).

I’m beginning to see why they cast Kim Dong-wook here. His safe, steady, straight vibes are running strong, and he’s a great foil to the chaos that Da-jung feels, as well as to the danger of Chae Joon’s character.

Speaking of danger, the letter Joon left for Da-jung (alongside the childhood photograph) was both a confession and a suicide note. It detailed all the murders he committed, and as Young-do’s team of police friends investigate, everything adds up perfectly. But maybe too perfectly? It’s thanks to Young-do’s intuition that they start to realize something is wrong.

As the police re-investigate the Chae Joon (real name Choi Jung-min) case, Da-jung attempts to settle back in at work. However, things don’t even out for long. Da-jung meets one of their new VIP guests in the hallway. She’s hurrying along and doesn’t react until a beat after she registers what she’s just seen: he’s the spitting image of Joon.

As Da-jung rushes to the elevator bank to confront him, we get the first of our spine-tingling and episode-ending twists. It’s IAN NORMAN CHASE (Yoon Park again!), a doctor raised in the U.S. who’s ostensibly back in Korea for the first time in many years. Or so we are told.

But this shocking moment of recognition isn’t enough — the show goes even a step beyond. Da-jung looks like she’s seen a ghost, but tries to remain professional around the guests. It’s not until Ian is on the elevator that we see him shoot a glance at Da-jung just as the doors are closing. Ahhh! Delicious. Rewind and rewatch. Did she see it? Did he want her to see it? What is happening!

Da-jung is rightly spooked, and goes straight to Young-do’s police friend GO JIN-BOK (Lee Hae-young) who’s been earnestly investigating the “church” that was connected to the photograph, but is all but a creepy cult situation filled with abuse and worse (“not all churches are real churches”).

All of this drama forces Da-jung to go back to her childhood more than I think she would like to, and often that means talking to her younger brother KANG TAE-JUNG (Kang Hoon). He seems to remember more than she does, and sheds some light on moments she has forgotten or repressed.

On a side note, I do hope we see more of these two together — I’m a sucker for strong sibling relationships in stories, and I really liked what we saw of Tae-jung this week, and how close the two are. We saw him do everything from lend clothes to Young-do (after Mom pushed him into the ocean) to protect and comfort Da-jung after her second (and equally creepy) encounter with Ian.

This confrontation scene is a callback to Da-jung and Joon’s earlier scene together in the snow, being filmed very similarly — but this one is entirely different in tone. Ian is angry and gets in Da-jung’s face about how she mistook him for someone else. Her brother and Ian’s colleague defuse the situation, but it still leaves us (and Da-jung) unsettled.

Interspersed with all the unknowns and creepy question marks, we have a whole lot of cuteness, though. Da-jung and Young-do come to this really sweet understanding that starts with gratefulness and friendship (what they want to define as neighborliness), but is clearly already heading towards something more.

Da-jung is determined to give him this little bobble head toy that represents a superhero with a super heart, and spends way too much time and money at the vending machine to secure it for him. Likewise, Young-do keeps it in his office with his other doodads, but it clearly holds a special significance for him. In fact, he doesn’t try to hide from the fact that he’s starting to like Da-jung, and he admits it to himself. His famous actress ex-wife AHN GA-YOUNG (Nam Gyuri) also senses something is up with her ex’s affections, and is already playing the mischievous puck by stealing toys and being petty.

I’ve already raved at how well You Are My Spring builds towards its twists, and throws in all this introspection and sweetness in between, but another thing the drama does well is find a way to connect the two.

We see this really well-played with the toy machine. Da-jung and Young-do are absolutely ridiculous here (I laughed out loud!), but while being totally embarrassing, cute, and entertaining, it also sneaks in some themes: the twin toys in Da-jung’s hand spur a conversation about doppelgängers, and it works in such a way that builds tension towards those reveals.

The final twist for this week is another doozy, and confirms what we hoped wasn’t true: that Ian (or whoever he is!) does know something, and is already deeply embedded in this murderous mess. Young-do heads back to the abandoned parking garage to investigate (not recommended!) and as our OST kicks in and some hanging sheets of plastic blow in the wind, we see Joon, or Jung-min, or Ian — or whoever this doppelgänger truly is — come out of the shadows to confront Young-do. *goosebumps*

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This drama is kinda weird. First, there is a mystery with cult, abused children, dopplegängers, murders and then there is these 2 characters whom I really like, having real conversations.

I don't think Ian knows for the present, but he defenitely knows about the cult.

I'm curious about the guy in the computer game room, who was surprised to see Ian.

Kim Dong-Wook and Seo Hyun-Jin are doing great together.

I always get the impression that Kim Ye-Won is doing the same role...

I'm happy to see Ji Seung-Hyun, one of my favourite ahjussi!

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"cult, abused children, dopplegängers, murders " omo it's Kill It's younger sibling. Jk, that didn't actually have clones. Although it should've, and still does. In my canon.

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I watched only one episode of Kill It, so I trust you about this :p

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Are we twins , dopplegängers ?????
While watching this episode I couldn't stop thinking about kill it and KJY
By the way I think we're going to have clones here

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Watching this drama, and reading your comment jelled my thoughts on this drama.

Kill It is to a John Woo action flick as
YAMS is to a Hitchcock psychodrama.

The visuals, though… I don’t know enough about the language of cinematography, but the episodes are full of interesting shots.

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I really had this feeling, too, from the first episode, that this drama was trying hard to be an Alfred Hitchcock psychological thriller.

I don't think Alfred Hitchcock would have given away the evil twin scenario through a flashback to childhood.

Do you think the guy who showed up in Young-do's office with a black cap and vaguely threatened him -- while staring at the spot on the floor where the body had been during the murder -- would that have been the evil twin?

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At this point, I’m holding off on who’s the evil twin, who’s the murderer, etc.

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ㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋ... I'm actually lowkey enjoying this drama, and although it seems to bother a lot of people, I also don't mind the murder mystery.
Then again I also enjoyed Kill It, despite it being, well, Kill It pfffft.

The framing and structure of a lot of shots is really well done actually, I agree. It also has decent editing, and sound design. (The unnerving water bucket, for example.)
A lot of shows get labelled as "pretty", but kdramas these days have generally pretty high production quality that everything is the same kind of pretty, and shot in the same kind of way, that I tend to get sick of it.
This I would say is actually trying to be its own thing.
It holds my interest in both story, character and visuals enough for now. Whether it retains it, and resolves things well, ofc, remains to be seen.

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Well, I also watched Kill It, live, no FF… I’m not sure what that says about me? I can’t quite call it one of the “it was the best of dramas, it was the worst of dramas” but it had its moments, good and bad.

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I like everything about this drama except for the murder mystery. The whole sequence from Da Jung requesting Young Do to accompany her, till her breakdown in the beach and him comforting her, made me assume that the drama will stop shifting to the thriller genre. As much as I enjoy the banter between Seo Hyun-Jin and Kim Dong-Wook, I am of the notion that any use fast forward button is an indication of lack of interest in the plot. Going by the above statement, I am dropping this drama. Thanks for the short review @missvictrix .

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Thank you for updating on this drama. I'm glad to have a space to talk about this weekly.
I have to say I'm not too keen on the murder mystery trope. I suspect another trope (ML's illness) is going to rear its ugly head soon and hopefully it's not too prominent to become annoying. That being said I like the characters, the interactions and dialogues as well as the beautiful cinematography so I'm still happily watching.

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I really liked episodes 3 & 4. The conversations between our leads were witty and at times healing. The drama has a comfortable tone and some funny side characters eg. Dajung’s lady colleague and Youndo’s friends. Their friendship is progressing and Youngdo certainly has some budding feelings for Dajung. The Dr Hollow toy figurine scenes were soooo cute.

I see the murder mystery as a tool to revealing our characters’ traumatic childhood. They are all carrying the pain from the past and the murders somehow or rather are forcing them to look into the memories which they most want to forget. I’m curious about Youngdo’s childhood, I assume his brother died and he hasn’t mentioned his mum. Is he all alone now? Even though he’s a psychiatrist, he seems to need some healing of his own.

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I love love everything about this drama except the murder part. I just don't care about it and honestly it ruins what could be a perfect drama. The dialogue is excellent. Seo Hyun Jjn does what she does best, just imbibing a naturalness to her characters that is unmatched. The rest of the characters are interesting. This is such a good drama, lessened by an uninteresting and unnecessary murder subplot.

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Da Jung's childhood trauma, list of trashy ex-bfs, sudden murder in the apartment when she decided to start afresh and subsequent suicide of the guy she thought was decent enough to date, are more than enough to make this a healing/romance drama. I really don't know why the writer decided to dig and unearth a crime scene and drag it as a side plot. I am sure it'll play a major twist but for now it is not adding any strength to the drama.

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Agreed!!!

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No, from what I've seen since episode 1 the writer seems intentionally want to make this as more than a "healing" drama as Find me in Your Memory / Its Okay that's Love, and more pushing it to the realm of :

- Come and Hug Me
- The Smile has Left your Eyes
- When the Camellia Blooms
- Its Okay not To be Okay

... which all are known for their weird mix of romance and thriller genre. So prepare yourself for a ride!

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I'm not sure what you are disagreeing with here. I know what the writer is trying to do, but we are saying it isn't making the drama better or more interesting. The description says it is a healing drama, so we knew that going in,, we are saying it can be healing without the boring and annoying murder subplot.

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I’m thinking it’s triplets.

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😂😂😂 twins are so passé!

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Unironically had the same thought myself in episode 4 lol.

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Lol I think it's a dwarf clown with three personalities (I'm looking at you, Voice 4)

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Lol I've read a few comments saying they don't really like the murder mystery aspect of the show, but that's low key what I'm loving about the show right now-- it's such an odd tone, to have the healing slice of life played over this super traumatizing murderer's suicide... and what all the secrets behind everything are. I'm invested!

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