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Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha: Episode 9

When our dentist’s parents show up for a visit, a misunderstanding turns into a white lie that gets the whole village involved. With two suitors vying for her parents’ approval and lots of hidden feelings bubbling to the surface, things are about to get pretty messy.

 
EPISODE 9 RECAP

Spooked by a shadow in the dark alleyway behind her, Hye-jin runs straight into Doo-shik’s arms. He gently scolds her for being out alone in the dark. She only grabs him tighter, so he does the same, holding her close until she pulls back to look him in the eye. They’re interrupted by Yong-hoon (the person Hye-jin thought was following her), who picked up the phone Hye-jin dropped in her panic. He chuckles as the two of them jump apart, and tells them to carry on with what they were doing. Hye-jin retrieves her phone, and she and Doo-shik try to laugh it off as they bid each other goodnight.

As Doo-shik heads home, he clutches his pounding heart, and Hye-jin sticks her head in the freezer to cool down. Neither can sleep that night, and they end up trying all sorts of exercises to distract themselves. (And LOL – does Hye-jin’s hula hoop remind anyone else of a different Shin Mina show, Tomorrow with You?)

The next day, Doo-shik stops at a gas station to fill up his truck. And wouldn’t you know it, Hye-jin’s dad and stepmom are there, too, though of Doo-shik doesn’t know them, nor they him. Doo-shik steps over to help Dad with the touchscreen instructions on the gas pump, ruffling his feathers with his use of banmal.

As Hye-jin goes for her morning run, she can’t get last night’s embrace out of her head. And she’s not the only one: she meets Nam-sook, who’s heard the whole thing from Yong-hoon but swears she hasn’t told anyone else. It’s only after Nam-sook leaves that a nearby truck pulls away, revealing Hye-jin’s parents standing right there.

Flustered, Hye-jin takes them to her home. Dad heads to the restroom, only to come face-to-face with Doo-shik, who’s on his way out of said restroom, with obviously wet hair. Apparently, Mis-eon had asked him to fix their leaky showerhead. Hye-jin tries to push him out the door, promising to pay him later, but Dad takes offense at Doo-shik’s continued use of banmal and introduces himself, clearly hoping for Doo-shik to change his attitude.

Instead, Doo-shik accepts the proffered handshake and pulls Dad in for a hug. Even more offended, Dad clamps down in a vise grip on Doo-shik’s hand. He grills Doo-shik about his relationship with Hye-jin, fully admitting he heard they spent the night together. Hye-jin’s attempts to intervene are brushed aside, and finally Doo-shik says he’ll explain: “I’m Hye-jin’s boyfriend.” Dad finally lets go.

While Hye-jin and Doo-shik prepare fruit for her parents, she asks him in a furious whisper why he’d say such a thing. He whispers back that he had to save his hand from being crushed, and that it was the only answer her dad would accept at this point. Besides, it’ll be easy to say they’ve broken up later, after her parents have gone back home. She glares, but he says this is just another part-time job – and he’ll only charge her for the shower head.

They all sit down with the fruit (which Doo-shik has cut into adorable little bunny shapes). Dad tries to get a private talk with Doo-shik, but Hye-jin shoots it down, so Dad fires off more questions. Doo-shik has to be prompted to tack on polite endings to his sentences, and when he claims they’ve been together for about three months, Dad’s eyes bug out since Hye-jin hasn’t been in Gongjin much longer than that. Asked about his occupation, Doo-shik says vaguely that he has many part-time jobs. Dad takes that to mean he’s unemployed, which Doo-shik doesn’t outright deny. Hye-jin says defensively that her job ought to be enough, and makes a point of mentioning Doo-shik’s engineering degree from Seoul National University. That earns a few brownie points, and Dad invites Doo-shik to join them in visiting Hye-jin’s clinic. Doo-shik agrees, quietly assuring Hye-jin that he has a plan.

Next thing we know, a message from Hye-jin goes out to the whole village that due to undisclosed circumstances, Doo-shik is pretending to be her boyfriend. As a reward for their cooperation, she offers a 30% discount to whomever puts on the most convincing act. Meanwhile, Sung-hyun calls for a break in filming due to the heat.

Hye-jin and Doo-shik show her parents around. Dad is still grumpy, and Stepmom complains that he’s always this boring. Just then, an excited cluster of villagers approaches. They’re painfully awkward in their acting, and Hwa-jung barely saves the moment by introducing herself as Hye-jin’s landlord. Fortunately, Dad’s main point of confusion is the fact that everyone seems to already know who he is.

Writer Ji-won catches Sung-hyun folding a script into a paper airplane, and shoos him away. He stops to tease Joo-ri about hanging around in hopes of seeing June, and that’s when he spots Hye-jin and her entourage. Joo-ri explains about the ruse, making his jaw drop in horror. He rushes over and loudly introduces himself, charming both parents with his polite speech (and fame). He invites them to come in and view the set, promising Hye-jin that he understands the situation and won’t embarrass her. She doesn’t look convinced.

Sung-hyun serves refreshments and regales the family with stories of Hye-jin’s university days, much to her parents’ delight. But every time Doo-shik tries to join the conversation, it instantly kills the mood, so he eventually gives up and just listens with an awkward smile. Dad eyes the last piece of the bread for a long time before deciding to reach for it… just as Doo-shik grabs it and stuffs it in his own mouth, commenting that no one ever seems brave enough to take the last piece.

Before anyone can react, Stepmom spills her drink. Hye-jin rummages in her purse for wet wipes, pulling out her keychain – with Sung-hyun’s llama doll attached – and setting it on the table. Sung-hyun grins, Doo-shik frowns, and the staff member who’s come to tell Sung-hyun they’re ready to resume filming eyes the doll with confusion.

As the group heads out, Sung-hyun pulls Doo-shik aside and warns through gritted teeth that Doo-shik had better do his part-time job well. Doo-shik just smiles back and says he’ll do a great job as Hye-jin’s boyfriend. Sung-hyun fumes, then turns to face the accusing glares of his team, who are hurt that he gave away their good-luck charm.

Eun-chul finds Mi-sun killing time at a bus stop, and she jumps at the chance to spend time together. She offers to help him with his job, which right now is delivering lunches to the elderly, but the passenger seat of his police car is packed with lunches. So she jumps in the back and strikes up conversation about the waterproof seat. But she immediately wishes she hadn’t asked, because it turns out that’s to make it easy to clean when drunk people throw up or use the bathroom back there. To make matters worse, Eun-chul informs her that he had to clean the seat for that very reason just last night. Mi-sun raises herself up as far off the seat as her seatbelt will allow, until the car in front of them makes an illegal U-turn and Eun-chul follows, forcing her to sit properly or be thrown around.

Her mood lifts considerably, though, as she watches Eun-chul in action. When he comes back from issuing a ticket, she tells him he’s also guilty – of invading her heart. He stares, frozen, as she giggles and names the penalty: that chicken he gave her the other day. Then she adds, “Let’s date!” Eun-chul shakes himself out of his stunned silence, and says gently but firmly that he’s not ready to move so fast. Suddenly Mi-sun “remembers” that she has somewhere to be, and promises to help him deliver lunches another time. He has to let her out, since the door doesn’t open from the inside, and watches sadly as she practically runs away in embarrassment.

At Hye-jin’s clinic, Dad asks if Sung-hyun has a girlfriend, adding pointedly that he seems like a great guy. He also asks about the orchids he sent Hye-jin, and when Stepmom teases him about letting his own orchids die, Doo-shik can’t resist analyzing exactly what went wrong. (Turns out his job in the military was taking care of the trees and flowers that were used for special events.) Dad looks at him with new eyes and asks about a different type of orchid.

They’re still talking about orchids when they arrive at Hwa-jung’s restaurant. At least, until Dad gets distracted by the baduk game Yi-joon has just won against another villager. With a gleam in his eye, Doo-shik challenges Dad to a game, which Dad enthusiastically accepts, and Hye-jin and Stepmom leave them to it. They find a table upstairs, where they sit in uncomfortable silence. Noticing that Stepmom is drinking a lot of water, Hye-jin asks if she’s unwell, and Stepmom says self-consciously that she’s been diagnosed with burning mouth syndrome. Hye-jin gives her a hard candy and offers advice about keeping her mouth hydrated, and Stepmom smiles just a little. Downstairs, Doo-shik wins the baduk game, but Dad sulks until he removes the winning piece and the game continues.

Young-guk visits Cho-hee with a gift basket, so she asks him out to talk. They end up at Chun-jae’s café, where Nam-sook gleefully snaps a photo. She sends it to Hwa-jung, who brushes it aside as Doo-shik and Dad stand up from their game. (Dad’s sulky expression says it all.)

Young-guk tells Cho-hee he has something to say, and dramatically recites: “To the love of my life. I will never forget you until my very last breath. I know my chance will never come. Please stay beautiful as you are.” Cho-hee recognizes the poem, but she doesn’t appear pleased. She says while she’s grateful for his friendship, she’s never had romantic feelings for him. In denial, he assumes she must be saying this because of Hwa-jung.

Doo-shik senses that Hye-jin and her family aren’t extremely close, and suggests they play an icebreaker game. They shoot that idea down, so he tries to feed Dad a bite of sea squirt. Dad pulls away in disgust, saying he doesn’t eat anything slimy, but Doo-shik urges him to trust him and try it. “Why should I trust you?” Dad asks. Doo-shik thinks it over and says, “Because we played baduk together?” He says his grandfather always used to say playing games makes you instantly friends with someone. That softens Dad just enough to accept the sea squirt, and he even admits that it’s not that bad after all. He resists the next bite, but the atmosphere has turned from hostile to playful, and Hye-jin thinks to herself that they all seem to feel a little more comfortable with Doo-shik present.

After the meal, Dad declares he ate well because he was with his entire family. He asks about Doo-shik’s family, so Doo-shik explains about his parents and grandfather passing away when he was young. Suddenly Dad shuts down again. After Doo-shik leaves for the bathroom, Dad asks Hye-jin with an accusatory tone if she knew Doo-shik was an orphan. Hye-jin asks incredulously if that’s a sin, and Dad actually says it is, and demands she break up with Doo-shik immediately. (I’m sorry, I need a moment. WHAT?!) Doo-shik starts back up the stairs just in time to hear Dad say she mustn’t date someone with such a “flaw.” Outraged, Hye-jin throws it right back: in that case, losing her mom gives her just as much of a “flaw.” Dad storms out of the room, only pausing for a split second when he comes face-to-face with Doo-shik on the stairs. Doo-shik lets him pass, but follows him out.

Doo-shik sits next to Dad, gently nagging him about the pack of cigarettes he’s holding, and Dad muses that even Hye-jin doesn’t do that. After a beat, he apologizes. Doo-shik smiles that Hye-jin really does take after him, since she’s also quick to admit her mistakes. Dad says it isn’t an excuse, but that he just doesn’t want Hye-jin to be lonely like she was as a child. He’d turned to alcoholism when her mother died, neglecting her care and causing her to grow up too fast, and has never forgiven himself. He knows it’s selfish, but he wants her to marry into a big family so she’ll finally receive all the love she deserves. Doo-shik says he’s wrong – Hye-jin must have received a lot of love growing up, since she gives so much to others.

Still inside, Hye-jin also apologizes to Stepmom for implying she was less of a parent, to which Stepmom says Dad crossed the line first. She says it’s hard for parents to be objective about their own children, and asks Hye-jin not to resent him, because he actually adores her. He went to dozens of florists to find those orchids, keeps her childhood photo as his phone background, and keeps up with Gongjin’s weather far more than their own. And while he’s quiet at home, he never stops talking about Hye-jin when they’re out and about.

Dad asks if Doo-shik likes Hye-jin a lot. Doo-shik pauses and gives a genuine yes… but as a friend. He comes clean about the lie, assuring Dad that nothing happened that night, and says he sincerely hopes she finds someone who’s as good as she deserves. “That could be you,” Dad finally says. They rejoin Hye-jin and Stepmom, and decide to go for coffee.

As filming continues, Sung-hyun sits staring into space, murmuring that he can’t be too late again. He thinks back to university, when he’d planned to ask Hye-jin out on a date, only to learn she was already dating his friend. He’s so lost in thought that when the idols hit a problem while filming and wonder if it’s too late in the day to fix it, he snaps at them that it’s absolutely not too late.

Hye-jin and Doo-shik send the parents off. Dad motions Doo-shik over to his window for a private word — he wants to know why Doo-shik keeps using banmal. Doo-shik says it sounds friendlier that way. Dad whispers, “Not to me, you bastard,” and drives off with a huge grin, leaving Doo-shik stunned.

Hye-jin follows Doo-shik up to his boat at the top of the hill, which he explains belonged to his grandfather. (And getting it up there involved a truck, a helicopter, and lots of work.) Hye-jin asks about his secret years, but he doesn’t seem keen on answering, so she decides what’s past is past and asks if he’s taking a break here to figure out what’s next. But no: he plans to live here forever. She likens that to playing Minesweeper on a high-tech computer, or driving a sports car through rice paddies. With a smile, he tells her not to look down on the beauty of simplicity, and she sighs that she must be a lunatic to try having a normal conversation with him. (Doo-shik: “Do you want to put a flower in your hair, so you’ll be a pretty lunatic?”) After she leaves, Doo-shik sits on his boat, staring thoughtfully out into the distance.

The next day, Mi-sun gets word that her mom fell and injured herself. Eun-chul happens by as Hye-jin is bundling Mi-sun into a taxi, and runs over to ask Hye-jin where she’s going. When Mi-sun arrives at the bus terminal, Eun-chul pulls up beside her, saying he’ll drive her to Seoul.

Sung-hyun is also heading back to Seoul, as filming has wrapped up. He hesitantly asks Doo-shik if the “part-time job” finished well, and although Doo-shik says yes (and rattles off exactly how much he earned), they agree that it might not actually be over.

Hwa-jung and Nam-sook are out for a walk when they spot Young-guk sitting dejectedly by the side of the path with a bottle of soju. When Hwa-jung tells him to go home, he cries that this is all her fault. Hwa-jung denies it, so he brings up what happened three years ago: according to him, all he did was take off his socks wrong, and she kicked him out. Hwa-jung refuses to tell him the real reason (thereby confirming there was a different reason), and leaves him to his distress. Nam-sook doesn’t press, but advises her not to bottle up her emotions and make herself sick.

Doo-shik sits by his boat, now floating on the water.

On his way to Seoul, Sung-hyun calls Hye-jin, apologizing for not telling her in person that he was leaving. He says he has something to tell her when he comes back, and they make plans to meet up. Just then, Hye-jin realizes the broken streetlight has been repaired. In a flashback, we see that Doo-shik had hounded Young-guk until it got done. Sung-hyun hangs up, worried about being late again. He makes a decision. And a U-turn.

Doo-shik passes by Hwa-jung’s restaurant and thinks about his conversation with Hye-jin’s dad, and quickens his pace. Hye-jin stands in the alleyway, smiling up at the streetlight, unaware that two people are on their way back to her.

 
EPILOGUE

Doo-shik’s doctor observes that he’s sleeping better and suggests lowering his dosage… and addressing Doo-shik’s deepest fear. We see young Doo-shik at his grandfather’s funeral, where guests had whispered that some people bring death to everyone around them. An older Doo-shik enters another funeral hall, though we don’t see who the deceased person is this time.

The doctor asks, “So everyone you love has left you?” Doo-shik cries as he says yes, and that it’s his own fault.

 
COMMENTS

Whew. Even though there weren’t actually all that many things that happened this episode – Hye-jin’s parents came, toured the village, had lunch, and left, and a few side characters had conversations about their respective relationships – it feels like we covered a lot of ground, and that there’s a lot to unpack.

Let’s start with the big one: Hye-jin’s dad. I have very complicated feelings about him, but in a way, I appreciate that fact. It’s easy to write people off or lump them into categories based on one trait we deem their defining point. (So for example: Hye-jin’s dad = prejudiced = bad.) It’s harder to look for the root cause of his extremely hurtful words and try to really understand him like Doo-shik did. I’ll admit, I probably wouldn’t have tried, at least not immediately. But, in a parallel to what we learned about Nam-sook last episode, people are usually more than we perceive them to be. People say hurtful things out of their own hurt, and Hye-jin’s dad acknowledging that this was exactly what he was doing says a lot about who he is as a person. Though, again, that’s not the only measure of his character either.

As for Doo-shik, he’s starting to make more and more sense too. Instead of using his hurt to lash out at people, he channels it into self-defense in a very covert kind of way. By creating a seemingly open and friendly dynamic with everyone he meets, he can control how intimate the relationship actually gets: people feel as though they’re very close, because he listens to and helps them with their deepest fears and problems, but he keeps his own vulnerabilities locked away out of reach. And by turning nearly every social interaction into a professional contract of sorts, he maintains even more rigid boundaries without most people even realizing that’s what he’s doing. Is this a “better” way to cope with one’s insecurities than lashing out? I don’t know. It makes people around him happy, but I can’t help wondering if it isn’t hurting him even more than it would to let all the pain out.

And then there’s Sung-hyun, who’s all charm until he isn’t. I don’t think he’s a bad guy at all, but I do find him pushy, especially when it comes to Hye-jin. But since we’re trying to understand people today, I suppose he had to be that way to become the superstar PD that he is. I just hope he’ll confess soon so Hye-jin can reject him and we can move on, because I like him best when he and Doo-shik are reluctant friends instead of rivals.

Lastly, about our other couples: Mi-sun and Eun-chul are beyond adorable, and I hope she won’t be too embarrassed to spend that extra time getting to know him. While it stung to hear that Eun-chul wasn’t ready for a relationship with her, it also wasn’t a complete rejection, and it’s clear he already cares about her a great deal. Young-guk, on the other hand, was of course completely rejected – by both of his primary love interests. I was a little surprised to learn that his and Hwa-jung’s marriage was something he did solely because she wanted it, and I wonder if she divorced him for his sake or her own. Either way, there’s a lot she’s not telling, and it probably goes way back to the time when Cho-hee lived with her and they were all friends.

Even though this episode took place over the course of a single day, it was also a turning point for several of our characters (both literally and figuratively). It’ll be interesting to see what secrets come to light next, and what people choose to do with that information.

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EVEN TWO LITTLE KIDS FIGHTING FOR A CUPCAKE ARE NOT THAT COMPETITIVE.
It was a beautiful episode, though I could not stand the constant fighting for attention. Ji PD is a nice guy, but he seems to have caught on Du-shik's growing feelings for Hye-jin and due to that, trying everything to be first. He should better confess immediately to avoid problems over their friendship.

The most beautiful thing I noticed is Hye-jin and her stepmom's relationship. The poor woman clearly want to be treated like her mother. I love that she is not forcing it, but instead is patiently adding candy and water to keep their relationship hydrated. If all Stepmothers around the world could learn.

Confession gone wrong! 🤣🤣 I totally expected him to be rejected. I was Nam-Sook and Coffee man in that scene. I could not hold my laughter anymore. If he really had just a little consideration for his ex wife, he would have discerned that that relationship just can't work. So much for the Joseon Poem!! 🤣

If you have not seen episode 10, please hurry. It is the best episode so far. HURRY!!

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Defiantly agree on episode 10:) I watched last 2 Sundays episodes twice :)

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I've lost count. 🤣🤣🤣

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@mistyisles you get Doo-shik's self-protective control of relationships really well. He is so vulnerable. Both he and Sung-hyun are appealing characters. I feel for the one who misses out. 😪 I like how direct and upfront Hye-jin and Mi-sun are in their relationships with men. I like too how quick characters are to admit to their mistakes. It's a forgiving world.

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This episode was hilarious! I loved so much the interactions between Hye-Jin's father and Doo-Shik. Poor Doo-Shik, he had no chance to leave easily from the moment her father understood that he was the chief Hong who slept with his daughter.

Hye-Jin and her father are very similar. They have their positions but if you jostle them a little bit, they're ready to open up to new things. The "He could be you" was really nice to hear :)

During this episode, we got what opposite them. Hye-Jin wants him to work a real job, Doo-Shik doesn't want to change his life style. It will be interesting to see how if one of them will change his/her mind or if they will both make an effort to meet each other.

Doo-Shik talked about his grand-father, he's starting to open up!

Young-guk is not a bad guy but he's someone to whom you must to tell how you feel because he won't guess alone.

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I went back and watched the episode again; the boat in the water unfortunately isn't Du-shik's (which makes sense thematically at this point in the story considering what it represents in the movie, I'd say).

But boy, Du-shik shattered my heart in this episode. I was so happy to see him getting close to Hye-jin's parents, hoping we would see how nice it was to have a family (and a girlfriend 👀), but then he said he only liked her as a friend, and I was shooketh. I also love your analysis of his behavior @mistyisles , and think it's spot on.

I adore Hye-jin, and I loved watching her interactions with her family. I think it's very true to life; watching them, I've recognized some parts of my relationships with my parents. I also love how they didn't make the stepmother an antagonistic character; she's simply a mother who wants to be closer to her child. I cried.

All in all, despite not a whole lot happening, I think this was a solid episode full of heart. That being said, can we pleaseee get the recap for ep 10 asap?? I have a LOT of thoughts and feelings 😩😩

[also, does anyone else think that the guy whose funeral Du-shik attended is the same guy in the picture with the wife and child?? 👀]

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I think they are different. My guess:
Baby and woman in the picture are Du-shik (when he was a baby) and his mother.
The guy whose funeral Du-shik attended is his best friend (maybe a mentor, co-worker, collage friend, or else).

Indeed, losing a loved one leaves a deep psychological wound. KSH was really great in the last scene.

Same here!! Cannot wait for ep 10 recap ^^

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Agree! I think you’ve got it. :)

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Ahh good catch about the boat! You're right, that does make more sense.

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Loved this episode and how Hye Jin's dad's opinions about Du Shik changed over its course. However, I really don't want DS to change his lifestyle but the drama does seem to be pointing towards that. While he seems satisfied with what he has chosen for himself, I don't think he actually is. You can notice some self esteem issues especially around someone accomplished as Ji PD. So maybe the thought of how he can do better or achieve more does come to him too but he is stubborn in his approach and ideology of life even if he yearns for the other way of life too. Tbh i don't think DS's ideology is bad at all. In fact, it's quite similar to mine. It would leave a bad taste if he decides to get back into the corporate struggle only to appease the society who he has been contradicting for long.

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Agreed. It is kinda weird how Hye Jin time to times asks him whether he is going back to the corporate life. Like girl, if you want a careerist guy Do Shik isn't the one for you.

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“Not to me, you bastard.” Lol Doo-shik’s not often at a loss for words.

Hye-jin and her dad are a lot alike. Hye-jin’s stepmom being so happy about that piece of candy was touching.

Doo-shik needs a family and that family needs his chaotic energy.

Poor Sung-hyun is too late again.

“You should be penalized too. You see, you invaded my heart.” Oh, Mi-sun. I had secondhand embarrassment for her there, yet she’s awesome for putting herself out there.

For once, I felt kind of bad for Young-guk, with the rejection and not even knowing the reason for the divorce. Dude, it's not because you took your socks off inside out.

Poor Doo-shik seems to be suffering from survivor’s guilt. I’m glad they are showing a ML going to therapy. KSH was really good in that scene.

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The fact that he believed it was because of his socks, was both sad and Hilarious, I was like sir, it is not because of your socks.

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I think the fact that he doesn’t know the reason is kind of the reason? Like he’s so not invested in the relationship that it’s just hurtful.

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No, and this is why I do not like his ex-wife. She is not looking at him and, in effect, saying that he should have known the reason, this is why they divorced, etc. There indeed is a reason- and she simply refuses to let him know why.

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What Dushik is dealing with is fear. This fear was implanted by his relatives who said he bring death to those around him n as a young teen, it register n him denying himself to have loved ones. But his condition is getting better probably due to hyejin crossing his line which help him cast that fear away. Hyejin's father said dushik could be the one deserves hyejin, makes him want to cast that fear out.
Like any father, will grip that guy hand hard n not let go till he hears satisfactory answers n dushik is clever to know that n said a white lie to survive, it was funny scene.
One if the things hyejin is attracted to dushik is how dushik is able to warm the hearts of people as she can see her parents with dushik at lunch. Similarly dushik was able to form warm friendship with SH. He is a warm person, from the way he interacts with people, n he is witty when SH is pushy on dushik "part-time" job.
I was surprise to see eun driving quite a big car, could he be the 3rd mystery. What he said to misun is right, he is so innocent n sweet.
Hwa not disclosing her reason for divorce is not helping herself if she so regret.
Ep 10 is awesome n is a must watch.

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I agree. Eun cheol (I forgot his name, pardon me) is too innocent and sweet. I need a man like Du-shik with a little touch of Eun cheol.

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That would be nice dushik with a little of eun cheol.
Dushik is sweet in playful witty way like - the gripping of his hand n his reasoning (it was so funny) - he makes hyejin father glad that there is no sleep over of that sort n that hyejin recieves lots of love that is why she is able to give to others n that hyejin deserves a good person. That really comforts hyejin dad. And all those things that he did for hyejin, is sweet n out of good intention.

The stepmum ask hyejin not to resent her father as it will be a huge punishment on the person who dotted on her, this really woke me up.
This ep is so halirious, i feel bad for young guk but i laugh why he recite poem n he is cueless why he got married n divorce....ah somebody help him please

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Last two episodes were so-so, but Hometown Cha Cha Cha came back stronger in these two episodes (9-10) because I loved the progress in everyone's relationship ❤

@mistyisles your summarization of each individual's behaviour is spot on. This shows how people are very similar yet very different.

If Sung Hyun harbours feelings for Hye Jin, years after college, shouldn't he have been more proactive instead of waiting for a chance meeting? I mean, he could have done any of the following:
1. He knows her degree, so he could guess her profession and search in hospitals/clinics etc. Money shouldn't be a problem since he is a PD, he could have used his influence.
2. Don't they have reunions? He could have got her number from someone even if she din't attend.

Did I miss something? Was he in abroad the whole time? I feel like Sung Hyun lost even before he had a chance to cause dilemma in Hye Jin's heart.

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I reckon all this while, they'll reveal, she always looked up to her sunbae, and admired him (and as young girls, with nostalgia clouding your brain, you mistake the respect & admiration for a 'romantic crush')...
We pretty much had the same conclusion in a similar j-dorama (Kikazaru Koi Ni wa...) which is a similar story/ dynamic to Homecha, except the leads are in their late 20's! :')

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I guess there is more in their story that we do not know yet. May be next week :)

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TV production is pretty cutthroat. If SH was working on his career, he was probably too deep in work to think of relationships. But damn, 14 years.

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I think he may have put her from his mind after graduation. During their time together, she had a boyfriend for a time and then there was the breakup and typically, you would want to give them some space and not be the rebound guy. And then boom - graduation and moving onto their respective professions. And bumping into her in Gong-jin resurrected his feelings and seemed like a sign from the universe that said "hey this is your chance" because why else would you bump into your first love in an out-of-the-way village if fate did not have something in store for the two of you?

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“I married you cause you wanted to, we got divorced because you wanted to”
This man clearly doesn’t think before he speaks. I’m now more curious about the real reason for the divorce.

Good to see Nam sook cutting down on the gossiping lifestyle she was living and I definitely can’t wait for Ep 10 recap!

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Think it's quite along the way of his speech...His lack of care and love or intrest to be in the marriage that over time added the last drop in that glass...
I guess every partner has it's limit even one who loves as much but if it's a one way ticket how much till it's enough...

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He doesn’t seem like he put any effort into the marriage just like he isn’t putting much of an effort into taking care of himself until Cho hee came back to town.
How bad was it that his own son almost puked hugging him😩😩😩….

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In every episode there are always some scenes where I just laugh out loud. In this one it was the scene where Hye-jin's dad was crushing Du-sik's hand and he went from "When are you going to let it go?" to the realisation "Ah! You have no intention of letting go of it!". I cackled.

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Towards the end, did Du Shik decide to confess thus heading to Hye Jin's place?
Won't spoil ep10's beginning but I wish we could have seen what might have been.

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I think it's safe to say that's a reveal reserved for a future epilogue! We think Gamri's convincing did the trick (in ep. 10) but for all we know, Du-Shik's 'eureka' moment might have come sooner, with recalling Dad's 'it could be you'... :')

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That was my impression too, that he was thinking about it and heading to Hye-Jin's place at the end of episode 9.

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Heres hoping that's the case! Bcs Dusik being there unexpectedly in Hyejin's house in the beginning of Episode 10 is too much of a coincidence

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''(And LOL – does Hye-jin’s hula hoop remind anyone else of a different Shin Mina show, Tomorrow with You?)''

Haha, yes, totally! Shin Mina is reuniting with the Tomorrow with You PD on this project, I guess she must enjoy working with him. And coffee shop/singer dude also played her dad in Tomorrow with You.

The parental hijinks and stepmom's advice to Hye-jin were my favourite parts of this episode. I found Doo-shik's behaviour to the parents rather rude and inconsiderate at the start of their meeting.

Also, I'm still a bit frustrated at the lack of development of Du Shik's story. Is that ever going to be fully explained to us, or will we just have to rely on short flashbacks?

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As an Asian, Du-Shik's behavior around the parents (future in-laws) did leave me flabbergasted! xD

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I totally felt the same way! Even if it was just a casual friend I would be appalled, much less my bf.

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Right?! Especially that scene where he didn't even offer the parents the last piece of candy! LOL

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But he did distribute the drinks from SH to the parents first before him.

Maybe it's just Kim Seonho's habit not Dusik lol

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And he also ate the fruit before offering it to the parents! I know he’s all about being informal but i thought he would at least be respectful to the elders. It was kinda surprising to watch and the dad calling him out on it made sense.

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I was cringing! I would have definitely put my foot down on any of my kids wanting to be his friend, let alone his girlfriend.

I think his behavior with them is also a perfect illustration of how annoying Du-shik can be, but also how charming. It's like sorcery how he just annoy you into liking him.

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I was still in the middle of watching TWY when I was saw HCCC episode 9, so seeing the hula hoop reference was a delight!

I was surprised to realize how many people were reunited over here, since I didn't realize till later that both series are helmed by the same director haha. To add to the the list you mentioned, Lee Bong-ryun is in both as well (she plays Shin Min-ah's best friend in TWY and Hwa-Jung over here)!

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I don't find SH pushy at all, so it genuinely surprises me everytime I read that people do. I think he is assertive, but that doesn't translate into pushy for me. I feel like he has moved as it pertains to HJ within his boundaries and hasn't crossed the line. DS has crossed boundaries but it doesn't bother HJ so it doesn't bother me. He pushed her into doing halmoni's laundry, she didn't tell him, but that could have badly injured her. Forced her into the rain when she didn't want it. Pushed himself into her house when she didn't want it. Those are just the examples that come to mind. I haven't seen SH do anything even remotely similar. Anyway, it is good to learn more about DS, his anxiety is interesting and I hope they delve more into it. It also explains a lot of about the things he does. HJ is good for him in that sense because she pushes back against the walls he has built. She is quick to call him out and quick to apologize. She is also really honest, so he doesn't have to fight as hard to keep up his walls. I think it is why he likes her so much, even though he obviously liked her from the beginning.

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Wow, brilliant dissection. I really like how HJ sometimes calls DS out on his bullshit, and I wish she could do it more often, hit the nail more on its head. It's a fun dynamic, and I admit, character growth isn't always a rosy-process. It's fun seeing her break down his walls, and you're right; it's probably why he subconsciously gravitates to her! ^^

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Tbh the pushy and nosy one is the ML in many circumstances and 2ML just knows her from the past. It is also strange to me that he has still feelings but he doesn't know her present self.

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I have no issue with SH, he's really a good guy, who worked hard and is nice with everyone. We can see his sincerity. He's almost too perfect in fact. His only flaw is he came too late.

DS is interesting because he shakes up HJ's certainties she has on many subjects.

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I've always liked SH bit somehow in this episode the way he greeted the Dad seemed a bit too eager to be sincere. He sounded like a politician shaking hands with potential voters and thus suspicious. And he clearly was bringing up what he knew about HJ before but it is clearly not HJ anymore.

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It didn't really bother me. In rom-com, this kind of scene are there for comey purpose. He gave compliments to Hye-Jin and didn't try to look better than DS by belittling him.

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I agree, all I can see is that Sunbae likes Hye-Jin and is eager to make a good impression on her parents. Sounds like a keeper to me, I hope he gets his own happy ending.

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Me too.

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me too. I would be touched that this guy likes me so much that he is eager to make a good impression. And his compliments of Hye-jin are really sincere since he only knows her as the hardworking, kind hoobae of his college years. And contrast him to Doo-shik who is almost insulting in how little effort he is putting into his manners when interacting with the parents of a good friend.

I think Sung-hyun is sincere and not pushy, but I do find that the actor's line delivery can be a touch too loud when being cheerful.

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I sincerely think that majority of us would have a lot different attitude towards Do Shik if it wasn't Kim Seon Ho playing him.

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I second this... if only not for KSH i'd be pretty angry over him forcing HJ do things that she dint agree at first but did cause he left no choice for her...
i was angry with DS for good 6 episodes cause he was always trying to tease (read mock) HJ and her ways of living life which i dint like.. but just cause KSH i am still holding my heart and allowing brain to not think much as its just a drama... and it cant be perfect.

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Oof, same. Ep 6 had me seeing red! Only after the Ji PD's appearance did I start feeling a tad sorry for him (as he kept getting upstaged & felt like he was no longer needed!) T_T
I really don't think I had it in me to forgive him after ep 5 & 6. Also, the 'i'm going to be mean to you cuz I like you' is something I do not find cute anymore, cuz life is too short for such antics. Glad Gamri told him off in ep. 10 that he's wasting his time (& his life) with his tsundere act! :D

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exactly.. only after Ji PD came I got back to the drama which was for me just to adore KSH' smile n charm...
Till then it was like he was running a one man show all around the village and then always ending up taunting/teasing HJ. "I am mean to you cause I like you" is what I detest.
hope he treat HJ better now.

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Definitely. I'm bummed that KSH got such a poorly developed character for his first drama after start-up. (His Han ji-pyung characterisation was so awesome!) The only reason I'm forgiving of Du-shik is because I adore KSH to pieces. I hope he has more to work with on his next project!

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I don't think DS is poorly developped. It's just we follow the same path than HJ to discover him, like her, we need to be patient to see his walls fall.

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SECOND THIS!
We hardly see Dusik's pov so far, as audience we are pretty clueless about Dusik like Hyejin. We are uncovering the mystery little by little. Dusik's bizarre life principles intrigues Hyejin although he's annoying sometimes.

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big yes to this..
Han Ji Pyong as character was such a PERFECT character that I could hardly find any single flaw in him.. and believe me it was HJP which made me fall badly madly for KSH and his charm...
but DS on other side feels like poles apart from HJP.. and I had doubt like how come KSH could select DS after HJP but I am happy he at least got a lead role where he can flaunt his Dimply Grin, flicking those bangs, swoony eyes...and I can just let my heart enjoy it.
but rest as a character DS is not winning me at all... and as you said DS is not we'll written character... and may be it's directors intention to keep the real DS in wraps to do some big reveal in future.. still DS could have ben a more real relatable character rather than one as "I am the best kind of attitude " and if not for KSH I'd hv dropped it long back.

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I think I started liking DS less after I saw how he treated SH's crush on HJ. Sure, he wouldn't be supportive, but for him to compete with SH for the woman he didn't pursue was a bit too much. It just felt like one of those situations when a guy doesn't want a girl, but also doesn't want her to be with anyone else.

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Really? I thought the charm of HJP was the fact that he was such an imperfect character, yet could melt your heart with the sweetest of gestures! In fact, much like Hye-Jin, he was quick to fault, and even quicker to apologize upon seeing his errors. On surface, he was cold and business-like, but deep down you knew he cared. Despite being a 30-something, HJP was peak 'Asian-Dad' , gruff and not verbose in love, yet loving & caring through acts of service and dedication. HJP was a perfect character for KSH's career path, but no way was HJP 'perfect', and I loved him in all his flaws! T_T
Which is why I have zero problems with KSH picking Du-Shik as his next act. I call the character out on his double-standards and other problematic behavior, but I think KSH has a penchant for picking less-than-likeable characters, and delivering them to be extremely swoon-worthy.

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@chibi8535
"I think KSH has a penchant for picking less-than-likeable characters, and delivering them to be extremely swoon-worthy."
completely agree with you know this.
.
and yes I found HJP perfect and liked it but not DS cause I think each of us has our own perception with which we watch a drama n connect with characters. So if you dint find HJP perfect it's completely fine with me as you hv all the right to like/dislike the charactersas per ur wish.. and same is with me if I dint like DS.
but about KSH I am glad we are in same page...

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But Han Ji pyeong is ruthless in the beginning. Only bcs we know his backstory from early on that we came to understand his behaviour. In real life, men like HJP is really scary and intimidating although I'll come to respect him due to his self-made successes and perseverance.

For me the ending of this episode is pretty self-explanatory about Dusik's behaviour: He likes Hyejin so much but couldn't take her in to be his girlfriend due to his fears that she might die because of him.

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I don't think DS is a bad character. He's a nice man who takes care of everyone in the town. Yes, he asks to be paid for his jobs, but Grandma could call him and he would come as soon as possible to give her porridge or he offered her to live with him for one month because of her house being a filming set.

For his relationship with HJ, he pushed her a lot (and could have been sweeter). But if he didn't, she wouldn't have any patient and people would still talk about her behind her back.

They both said things they shouldn't but both apologized.

It's a rom-com, their bickering is the fun part.

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I'm a huge HJP fan girl and I think one of my favourite things was how Kim Sun-ho elevated the character. Granted, the Start-up writer included an awesome rags-to-riches backstory and a beautiful relationship with granny that would warm the coldest hearts. On paper, HJP seems like the archetypal cold, arrogant, ruthless businessman, but KSH's interpretation of him was a kind, talented and principled man.

My quibbles with Du-shik are with the writing, I think KSH is doing his best, but in general I don't enjoy it when the character's backstory is "hidden" from the audience. I mean, we're already at ep. 10 and are still waiting for the big tragedy in his life to reveal itself.

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@emilytkn
thank you for speaking it out which i wasnt able to.
yes my issue with DS is exactly what you said.. 10 episodes and we are yet to find the reasons why he behave the way he does, the reason of his nightmare which leave him in sweat, reasons of his fear of loosing his closed ones...what he did those 5 years...
.
i loved HJP (nice to meet fellow HJP fangirl) cause i exactly knew he reasons of his reactions and ruthlessness (if people say so).. he had been thru a lot, knew value of each n every penny.... so i could justify him then and even now.
KSH turned HJP in an eternal unforgettable character for me.. just like LJK made Wang So (SHR) immortal.
.
for DS i hardly know him... its director's fault to not to let us meet the real DS behind that big wide grin, his real struggles which he is keeping to himself while he help others in their hardships.. and if only I would know him sooner I'd have empathy towards him than the complaints.

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See, I'm the opposite. I thought Han Ji-pyung was a poorly developed character. I don't think Doo-shik is poorly developed at all, he's pretty relatable to me, someone who has good points and flaws.

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Lol, is that what it is. Maybe, I like DS but SH objectively treats her better generally. DS and HJ have better chemistry though.

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Tbh probably yes. Even after that Very Swoonworthy laundry scene i was annoyed with the line about hardwork & how it makes a person nicer, implying that HJ doesn’t know the meaning or value of hardwork. Hardwork doesn’t always mean menial, laborious tasks; after all HJ didn’t get her degree by twiddling her thumbs!

Han Ji Pyeong was a jerk to mostly everyone and we could at least understand why, but Du Sik seems to be a selective jerk (noticeably to outsiders) and we don’t know why since he’s nice to all the villagers! Hopefully we get to know more about him in the coming episodes.

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Oh i forgot to say, HJP prolly knows he was a jerk and had the reputation to match it, whereas DS has a nice image and most likely doesn’t think he’s doing anything wrong, which makes it harder for the audience to understand him. But i agree w @rainbowlynn that we are discovering more about him at the same time as HJ.

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“By creating a seemingly open and friendly dynamic with everyone he meets, he can control how intimate the relationship actually gets: people feel as though they’re very close, because he listens to and helps them with their deepest fears and problems, but he keeps his own vulnerabilities locked away out of reach.”

Oof. Just realised I’m exactly the same…

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*sending virtual hugs!* :)

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╰(*´︶`*)╯♡

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I think I'm in the minority but I don't feel the relationship in this drama. The ML's character is full of unknowns, it is so much like a super hero character development, where his past is full of secrets. I can't feel the development of being a couple. It looks like one of those relationships where people jump into with some strong feelings but by not knowing each other so well. The summer vibes are still so beautiful to watch though.

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I feel the same way. I can’t connect with this couple. I don’t understand what the FL sees in him. His treatment of people is puzzling to me. The way he is kind to others (old ladies, cafe owner, that random Russian dude) but rude and impolite to others (SH, Hye Jin and even HJ’s dad). It’s confusing how the writer portrays him. And no, his past trauma, whatever it is, doesn’t give him permission to treat people this way. But it seems he gets a pass for rude behavior simply because he’s the ML.

I really want to watch this because I like the cast and the seaside atmosphere but the characters’ behavior keep turning me off.

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Yes, same! I think the writing gives a pass to people in that town. Just like the gossip lady (I can't remember her name, sorry) there is a narrative of "some people might act strange but they must have had very bad moments in the past" in the show. I actually feel so sorry for the ML but can't connect with him or ship them because I don't see any natural progress. I actually enjoyed when they met PD Ji first, they were having a good bromance. Then the ML got so competitive and acted jealous over the top when they had a meal. I couldn't help thinking of that irl and it feels too much not romantic.

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I have to say it's nice to see a bit of pushback here. Although I'm still watching the drama largely for the pretty, I don't find the writing all that compelling.
I share your sentiments about the romance. It's an odd feeling actually when the leads have such great chemistry but the romance trajectory feels so blah.

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The lack of coherence in the writing is disconcerting. It’s as if the writer didn’t know what to do exactly with his character and gave him some rough around the edges trait for the sake of tension. The lack of buildup in their relationship is another quibble. It might be a rom com and more fluff is expected but at least give the audience some credit for logical and critical thinking which the show prefers to glide over.

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I have so many issues with the writing I don't know where to start. A lack of coherence certainly, a lack of balance absolutely. For instance, I'm being steered towards showing a character empathy just because empathy is a virtue, not necessarily because the story itself makes a compelling case for it. Especially in the case of Nam-suk who is an inveterate mindless gossiper. The show tries to correlate her propensity for gossiping with her daughter's untimely passing. If it were just the case that she was just a nosy neighbour, one might wave that off an an annoyance but the fact that she was making some wild but serious accusations about Hye-jin's professional ethics which could have landed her in really hot soup. It's the stuff of slander. Yet the show puts the onus on Hye-jin to deal with it. She is in effect asked to put up with the slander because Nam-suk has a sob story and as a result the show glosses over the consequences of such behaviour. One person has to accommodate and the other has a quirk.

For me too there's an uneasy tribalism that undergirding the narrative that the outsider is the de facto villain that needs reforming. I don't mind if this issue is explored in a more sophisticated way but the fact that it is what informs/drives Du-sik's idiosyncratic (bordering on boorishness) behaviour towards Hye-jin makes their romance hard to swallow. What exactly is Hye-jin attracted to apart from the good looks? That's what I'm left with.

This is why I think Seong-hyeong is a far more likeable character. There's balance to him and he feels more like a real human being whereas Du-sik comes across more like an ongoing plot device that does what the script wants him to whenever it needs him to.

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In addition to all your points, I think it’s the absence of emotional depth that bothers me most. Their stories come across as in-your-face “life lesson” rather than a cohesive storytelling. And the leads’ interactions are too contrived instead of having a natural progression. It’s as if the writer strung together a list of all the different tropes and threw one for each episode to give the leads some form of interaction. That includes the stalker incident which required Du Sik playing the hero to the damsel in distress. Not only did he save her, he had to be injured as well.

In contrast, Hye Jin and Seung Heon’s past storyline had much better exposition showing a continuity to their present timeline. In real life scenario, it would make much more sense if they ended up as the couple.

For me, Du Sik’s boorish behavior towards Hye Jin borders on arrogance making it difficult to understand Hye Jin’s attraction to him. It almost makes Hye Jin seem shallow and superficial that she seems to be basing her feelings for him on vain reasons. That is not to say that Du Sik doesn’t have likable attributes, which he does. He just has this sort of Jekyll and Hyde personality that makes it very hard for me to reconcile.

Hye Jin’s feelings doesn’t warrant enough conviction of a grounded reality. More so that her realization of her feelings are based on the few moments that she shared with DS were too contrived.

It makes one wonder, is she really fine with him stepping on her boundaries? It seems she likes the idea of being in love with somebody who is handsome, charming and the opposite of her that makes it appealing for her. That is how it looks like to me. It all falls flat devoid of any sincere feelings.

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I write this a lot, but this is why I appreciate Dramabeans. We all have different takes on dramas, and we can share our thoughts civilly.
I like that the drama has taken it's time developing the couple--they started as leery acquaintances, became friends due to proximity and age, and now that they have spent time together they are moving on to the couple phase. Their chemistry has been obvious from the start, but for different reasons, they've taken their time to get to know each other before the romance.

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This was a great episode (episode 10 is even greater IMO).

One little thing not mentioned in the recap that I loved: During Hwa Jung and Nam Sook's walk where they come upon a drunk Young Guk, he actually grabbed Hwa Jung's wrist. I loved that Nam Sook called him out on it - that it's wrong. What follows is a funny little scene where Young Guk declares he's really a wimp and that Hwa Jung is the strong one and couldn't have been hurt by it. It's the telling off of the wrist grab that I loved though.

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I loved that scene too a lot too!! Now if I see a similar scene, I would wish I have a towel that I could whip out to snap at the hand.

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Enjoyed this episode and the intro of the parents. I'm glad that they didn't make the stepmom out to be a evil stepmother like the kdrama cliche.

That being said, the father INFURIATED me. I understand his reasoning and concerns, but those are not an excuse to BLATANTLY showcase disapproval while the person in question is sitting in front of you, and to voice it out loud at the table. He was beyond rude and he is lucky Dushik didn't "flip face" at him. That kind of behavior in real life would tank any in-law relationship from the get go.

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I raged at her father's petulant behavior over losing the baduk game, even sulking until Doo-shik took back his win. I'd advise against Doo-shik marrying into that family.

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Right? The father's manners were so piss poor I was surprised the drama went there. Dushik has the patience of a saint.

I know people are going to brush the dad's behavior under the rug, but in real life that sort of behavior would send any potential suitor with a brain sprinting for the exit.

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Lol for me he's just a typical Asian Dad who's all about manners. Any Asian father would weigh their possible future son in law whether they're good enough for their daughters or not. It's hilarious for me.

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Yup, typical Asian father who views any suitor harshly. My dad is exactly like that. I’m in fact very surprised at the quick turnaround.

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I don't have issue with the dad weighing his possible future SIL harshly. I do have issue with him doing it so obviously in front of the future SIL. That's a lack of basic manners that cannot be attributed to the Asian culture.

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Thanks to two very old fashioned men it has become gut check time for two of our characters.

Hye-jin's dad wants the best for his daughter- not just financially (he appreciates Hye-jin's comment that she has that side of things nailed down all by herself) but more important emotionally. When he tells Doo-shik that he could be the guy that she needs he means it- but in also challenging his currently too easy going persona- and calling him a bastard for doo-shik's disrespectful speech he is in fact calling Doo-shik in his b****t: Doo-shik needs to shape up, deal with his problem and get his act together NOW. In the end, for all that Dear Old dad was irritating for much of the episode I had to applaud his perceptiveness and his love for his daughter. At the same time I also have to say that it also underscores the very real problem posed by Doo-shik's trauma, which is obviously a very real one and not something to be taken lightly. As this episode begins the second half of our show I have to say how appropriate it was to raise this issue and this fact in this way at this time.

The other old fashioned man is our Young Officer Choi Eun-chul. What an extraordinary young man- forthright and straightforward, a true man of principle. The people of his town are very fortunate to have him. To say that Mi-sun has never met anyone like him is an understatement. She is completely out of her depth here. When he turns down her request to simply date came as a shock. And as a rejection of her. But it really wasn't a rejection of her but rather of the idea of casual dating just for fun. Eun-chul takes romance too seriously to simply do casual dating, which is all that Mi-sun has ever done. It was wonderful to see Eun-chul stop for Mi-sun and give her a ride all the way to Seoul so that she could see her injured mother. So it is not Mi-sun who was reject- just the idea of a casual dating relationship.

IN all honesty, unless Mi-sun wants to remain single forever (which is certainly OK if that is what she wants) then she has been doing the just dating thing for too long. So it is gut check time for Mi-sun: Is that what she wants? Or can she accept that Eun-chul might be her future and really take time to really get to know him? It is actually easy to see that Eun-chul might actually be what she needs in her life- while at the same time it is also easy to see that she actually does fit his idea of an ideal woman, up to and including looking good in a hanbok if she chose to wear one. It truly is gut check time for Mi-sun- she has no choice but to really figure out what she really wants- and this is a good thing because I think that she has been stuck in a rut until now,

As for poor Young-uk- he feels like he has been treated like a pawn precisely because that is exactly true. I find myself actively disliking both Hwa-jung and Cho-hee- What is their problem, or problems? The fact that Hwa-jung refuses to tell Young-uk the...

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real reason why she divorced him is simply cruel. I have actually come to dislike both Hwa-jung and Cho-hee.

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They're gaaaaaaaaaaay

(even if it doesn't actually happen that's still gonna be my headcanon shhh)

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My hunch is the reason she divorced him is precisely because he doesn't understand why she divorced him. He doesn't understand what she wants or how she feels. But HE thinks he's always done everything she wanted.

So the next question is whether she ever made an effort to let him know what she really wanted, or just expected him to know by osmosis. The reality is men are quite dense. He isn't going to know what his partner needs unless she tells him in plain language. Expecting otherwise is a romantic pipedream.

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Men are indeed quite dense- but really the same is actually true of women. In both cases they need to actually hear from their spouses. The expectation that your spouse will know something by osmosis is always silly- and men are just just as guilty of it as women. While there are important differences between men and women the greater truth is that men and women are actually far more alike than they are different. Then need and responsibility to actually tell each other things falls equally on men and women alike.

But I get the sense that this may not actually be what is going on with Hwa-jung. It almost seems like there is a much deeper problem than simply lack of communication, and perhaps one that really may have little to do with her ex-husband.

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I love how this episode is like a condensed version of the 1st 8 episodes where it shows how first impressions may change after you spend more time with that person. A person who you dislike at the beginning may turn out to be “not bad after all”.

A lot of people have complained how Du Shik was rude to Hye Jin and how Hye Jin was snooty at the beginning (which I totally agree & yes, I was rather appalled/shocked by how Du Shik behaved towards Hye Jin’s parents) but I think that’s exactly how the writers wanted to portray them.

I think it’s brilliant because that’s how real life is! And I would say although it’s a bit of a shock, it’s rather nice to see a drama where the ML/FL aren’t perfect at all and if I were to meet them in real life, I may not like them. In life, people whom I dislike (or even hate) have good friends or partners who love them - we just have different thresholds for different “weaknesses” 🙂

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So true about the different thresholds and what faults people can tolerate or even embrace.

I have friends with spouses who aren't bad people, but they ping my "ugh I could never ever marry or live with a someone like that or with a someone who would say that BS to me or who looked down on x." But guess what, I don't have to. Somehow that relationship works for them and make them feel happy and fulfilled.

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I LOVE THIS OTP!!!!!!!!!!

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Dad's reaction on learning that Du-sik is an orphan was frustrating, but actually not altogether surprising. I feel like I've seen similar things in other k-dramas, e.g. "One Spring Night" and "Something in the rain" (a.k.a. "Pretty noona who buys me food"), both similarly to do with family-related misfortunes, or "Find me in your memory", where the male lead had to give up his position and separate from his girlfriend when his condition was exposed to the gossiping public, again due to misfortunes he was not responsible for. It kind of feels like victim-blaming is a recurring theme in K-dramas, and for me those are perhaps the most frustrating plot lines of all (along with parents being overly controlling towards their adult children, bullying and sexism). "Pretty noona" felt almost traumatic to me and I was so exhausted after watching it. I was relieved when dad recognized how unfair he was being pretty quickly in this episode, and apologized for it, even though he didn't entirely back down.

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