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Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha: Episode 13

There’s a storm brewing this hour, in more than one sense of the word. For many of our characters, patience is wearing thin, and complaints that have long been held in are about to come bursting out. But while some are finding the grass much greener on someone else’s side of the fence, that’s only because they aren’t seeing the entire lawn.

 
EPISODE 13 RECAP

It’s Doo-shik’s birthday, so Hye-jin cooks seaweed soup. Mi-sun side-eyes the concoction, but Hye-jin force-feeds her some anyway before skipping over to Doo-shik’s with thermos in hand. When she arrives, there’s a whole party already underway, and Doo-shik explains that the villagers do this for him every year. As Hwa-jung serves her own seaweed soup, Chun-jae leads everyone in singing Happy Birthday. Doo-shik smiles broadly while protesting that they really don’t have to do this (they assure him he deserves it). After he blows out the candles, everyone insists Hye-jin help him cut the first slice of cake.

The couple slips inside to get watermelon, and he notices her thermos. Hye-jin hesitates, since he’s already eaten seaweed soup, but he just says there’s nothing wrong with having a second bowl and happily drinks it down. Meanwhile, at home, Mi-sun rinses her mouth out, complaining that no one deserves to eat something so salty. Doo-shik gives no sign, though he does refuse to let Hye-jin try any of it.

When they reappear outside with the watermelon, everyone starts making up excuses to leave early. Yoon-kyung, Geum-chul, and a sleepy Bora are the last to leave, and as they make their way home, Yoon-kyung asks Geum-chul if they can go on a date this weekend. With the baby coming soon, it might be their last chance for some alone time for a while. But Geum-chul tells her to rest instead.

Hye-jin wishes Doo-shik a private happy birthday. She also notices a new addition to his wine shelf, which he says is for her – but she’ll have to wait a year for it to get sweet enough. Hye-jin sticks a label on the bottle to mark it as hers, and sentimentally wonders what things will be like a year from now. Doo-shik looks thoughtful… and repeats that the wine will be sweeter by then.

The next day, Young-guk and Yong-hun drop by to see Hwa-jung while some of the ladies are helping her clean. They all proceed to criticize the watermelon and coffee the men brought (their palates now prefer the fancy coffee Sung-hyun used to buy them), and put them to work taking out the recycling.

Between shoots, Ji-won and Do-ha worry over Sung-hyun, who hasn’t been eating much. Do-ha blames the news that Ji-won is leaving them, urging her to reconsider. Both Sung-hyun and Doo-shik come up from different directions in time to overhear, and Ji-won decides to go for lunch alone.

Doo-shik drags Sung-hyun and Do-ha to his house and cooks chicken soup for them while Do-ha admires his array of herbs. Doo-shik offers the soup as an apology for stealing both drumsticks the other night, and sternly tells Sung-hyun to eat up.

But Sung-hyun still doesn’t eat much of it, and afterwards Doo-shik asks point-blank if it’s because of Ji-won leaving. Sung-hyun confirms that the timing of his lost appetite does correlate with her telling him the news. Doo-shik asks if her only reason for leaving was to try something different – she’d mentioned that she admires Sung-hyun, and he suspects she meant more than just as a colleague. Doo-shik ribs Sung-hyun for being so slow, going so far as to say that’s why he lost his chance with Hye-jin, too. Stung, Sung-hyun tells him not to rub salt in his wound, but Doo-shik says he has a bigger wound to deal with: he seems a lot more shaken up over Ji-won now than he ever did over Hye-jin.

Two of Hye-jin’s old classmates show up at her clinic out of the blue, having been in the area for a seminar. They giggle over how small and empty it is, so Hye-jin suggest catching up over coffee to get them out of there. At Chun-jae’s café, the two women insult his design choices right in front of him and then drop the news that Hye-jin’s ex is getting married soon. When they comment on her singleness, Hye-jin jumps at the chance to flaunt that she isn’t – and, right one cue, Doo-shik walks in.

They women recognize him from the photo taken at their other former classmate’s wedding, and Hye-jin quickly changes the subject (since she’d told them he was chasing her and she wasn’t interested). She calls him “oppa,” much to his confusion. The women invite him and Hye-jin to play golf with them tomorrow, and although Hye-jin tries to get out of it, Doo-shik readily agrees. As the two of them walk home later, Hye-jin worries that he might be hurt by her former classmates’ attitudes. Doo-shik assures her he won’t be.

The next morning, Doo-shik borrows golf clubs and an entire golf outfit from Young-guk. When he and Hye-jin arrive, she asks for a favor: just for today, speak formally to her former classmates. The women are taken aback to see him all dressed up, and at Hye-jin’s prompting, he awkwardly answers their small talk with polite, formal language.

Naturally, Doo-shik is amazing at golf. The two women gush about his skills over coffee, and Hye-jin happily brags about his other accomplishments, too. When they ask about his job, he says vaguely that he “paints, brews coffee, and sails,” and that he chooses to live his life however he wants instead of being bound by a formal job. Living like this, he has everything he needs: a bed, his surfboard, and the love of his life. Hye-jin beams. In private, her former classmates sigh over how romantic and refreshing he is, but also ask her if she plans on marrying him, wondering if their relationship is very realistic. Hye-jin looks troubled.

On the way home, Hye-jin bring up Doo-shik’s secret years, curious when and why he decided to live this way. She offers up her own guesses, the first of which is that he was the mystery lottery winner. That makes him laugh, since he wasn’t even in Gongjin at the time. So she throws out more ideas: he became a super-successful CEO, or a disillusioned former assemblyman’s aide, or an illegitimate chaebol heir (Doo-shik: “Don’t speak ill of my grandfather!”).

She’s still trying to guess by the time they get back to his house, and pouts when none of her guesses are correct, reminding him she doesn’t want any secrets between them. After a bit more pouting from her, he says that he had an ordinary desk job. She doesn’t seem to notice that his eyes are wet with tears and moves on to whether he plans on ever returning to Seoul (he doesn’t). She says hesitantly that she doesn’t plan to either right now, but that it’s always a possibility, and they both let the suggestion hang in the air until Doo-shik brushes it off and heads to the kitchen to make lunch.

Young-guk stands outside Hwa-jung’s restaurant, holding the slip of paper with her name on it from when they were deciding who would get to be on Sung-hyun’s show. He’d found it in her recycling and knew immediately that she’d given him her spot, and cries at how she keeps taking care of him. Inside the restaurant, Hwa-jung sends her employee home early and falls asleep at one of the tables. When she wakes up, she goes to finish the dishes, only to find them already done.

Mi-sun and Eun-chul walk back from a date. He shyly reveals that he researched the movie and restaurant ahead of time to ensure he was taking her to the very best. But Mi-sun tells him he doesn’t need to work so hard: she’d enjoy even a terrible movie or simple meal as long as it was with him. Aw, that makes him so happy. She tells him dating doesn’t come with a manual, and to follow his heart. So he grabs her in a giant hug, apologizing for skipping the handholding step. Mi-sun smiles and says he can probably skip some other steps, too.

Hye-jin thinks back on her conversation with Doo-shik, upset that he didn’t even pretend to consider moving to Seoul with her if that’s what she chose to do. Doo-shik, meanwhile, gazes teary-eyed at a suit hanging in his closet. In a flashback, we see him nervously trying it on for a woman named Sun-ah – who’s also the woman with the baby in his photo – and them laughing together. Now, in the dark, he says bitterly that he couldn’t bring himself to throw the suit away.

Yoon-kyung sits in her supermarket listening to news reports of an imminent typhoon, and calls Geum-chul over to carry her boxes of fruit inside. He nags at her for putting them out in the first place, and her frustration grows by the second, though she tries to tamp it down.

With their current show almost finished, Sung-hyun asks Ji-won if she’ll be jumping right into her new one. She scoffs that she’ll take a proper rest this time, since someone always called her up immediately after each show’s end, bursting with ideas for the next big thing – once even flying all the was to Florence to talk about it in person. Sung-hyun can’t deny it, and asks why she put up with him for so long. With a wistful smile, Ji-won says it was thrilling to brainstorm with him and finally land on that one electrifying idea. He asks if there are no more sparks now, but she says no: now there are constant sparks, and that’s the problem.

Yoon-kyung realized her shoestring has come untied, and asks Geum-chul to tie it for her. He’s just finished lugging the fruits inside, so he insists on getting a drink of water first. This time, Yoon-kyung fails to hold back her tears. Geum-chul blames the hormones, wishing out loud for the baby to come soon so she can be comfortable again, and that’s the last straw. She snaps that childbirth isn’t at all easy, and neither is caring for a newborn. He tries to apologize, but she’s too worked up, finally letting out how lonely and afraid she is, and that he can’t even see it, let alone understand. She screams at him to get out, and he finally does, leaving her sobbing.

Hwa-jung tries taping her window in anticipation of the storm, and has to stand on a chair to reach. Of course, she slips and falls – right into Young-guk’s arms. He yells at her for almost hurting herself. Then he rips up (today’s unread) newspaper to brace the window with. Once he’s done, Hwa-jung makes him tea. She reveals that she knows he washed her dishes, because he left a mess of soap and twisted-up towels. He accepts the scolding and sincerely apologizes for having been a terrible husband. He encourages her to go on the blind date, which Hwa-jung informs him she’s already accepted. Yi-joon comes in then with Bora in tow, and Young-guk tries his best to force a smile.

Geum-chul goes over to Doo-shik’s to complain about Yoon-kyung. Doo-shik, however, says she’d probably bottled up her struggles for a long time. He reminds Geum-chul that Yoon-kyung used to be a social butterfly, but now she spends all her time working and being a wife and mother. He also points out that she’d been the one to propose to Geum-chul (while pregnant with Bora), even though she must have been terrified, and that she’s likely suffering more than Geum-chul because she’s so much younger. Geum-chul frowns, but know he’s right, and leaves without his phone.

As the typhoon hits, Hye-jin stops by the supermarket and, finding Yoon-kyung in tears, immediately steps in to help tie Yoon-kyung’s shoe. Yoon-kyung thanks her and says through her tears that she envies Hye-jin for her respectable career and fun boyfriend. But Hye-jin says she’s to be commended too – raising children isn’t easy, and Yoon-kyung is doing it really well. Just as a clap of thunder sounds overhead, Yoon-kyung’s water breaks.

Hye-jin calls Geum-chul, but Doo-shik answers and speeds over to the supermarket in his truck. As he and Hye-jin help Yoon-kyung into the truck, he calls Eun-chul to ask if he’s seen Geum-chul (Wait, they’re brothers?! That explains a lot about their denseness). He hasn’t, but he does know that the road out of Gongjin is blocked by a landslide – not even an ambulance could get through. With Yoon-kyung’s condition getting increasingly urgent, Hye-jin tells Doo-shik to drive to her house instead. It’ll be better than Yoon-kyung giving birth here.

At Hye-jin’s house, a very terrified Doo-shik calls Gam-ri for help, and puts her on the phone with Hye-jin. Meanwhile, Geum-shul returns to the supermarket carrying Yoon-kyung’s favorite fruit. Confused to find it empty and unlocked, he calls Yoon-kyung, and his eyes widen in fear. Hye-jin assures Yoon-kyung that she has enough basic knowledge now to manage, and coaches her on breathing. When Geum-chul arrives, Yoon-kyung screams at him for leaving her alone. He apologizes in tears, and rushes to her side as Hye-jin encourages her to keep pushing.

Bora wakes up next to Hwa-jung with the storm raging outside. Terrified from stories she’s heard about childbirth, she starts crying and wanders out to the living room. Yi-joon comes out of his room to comfort her. He flinches at the lightning and thunder, but tells Bora that if she wishes on a flash of lightning it will come true. Bora drops to her knees, wishing for her sibling and Yoon-kyung to be healthy and safe, and Yi-joon joins her.

Doo-shik paces outside Hye-jin’s bedroom, wringing his hands. But he sighs in relief to hear Yoon-kyung’s screams turning into curses instead. Inside, she pulls Geum-chul’s hair and curses him out for wanting more than one kid. Hye-jin urges her to conserve her strength, and Yoon-kyung yells at her, too.

It’s morning (and sunny) when Doo-shik finally hears the baby cry. Geum-chul breaks down again and apologizes to Yoon-kyung for being so insensitive. Yoon-kyung is all smiles now, though, and just happy to have her beautiful new baby. He promises to treat her better going forward, and even change the diapers. Yoon-kyung thanks Hye-jin and transfers the baby to her arms just as Doo-shik knocks to be let into the room. They all joke that the baby looks just like Geum-chul. Yoon-kyung lets Doo-shik hold the baby, too, and he tears up with joy and awe.

He and Hye-jin leave the new parents to get some sleep, and Hye-jin rests her head on Doo-shik’s back, finally feeling her own exhaustion. He praises her for being so coolheaded, joking that the village will go to her now instead of him when they have problems that need solving. Hye-jin changes clothes, and the two head over to his place to take a nap. He tucks her into bed, and then crawls under the covers with her at her request. Hye-jin muses that it’s strange how emotional she felt while holding the baby, and asks if he’s ever thought about having kids. He says he hasn’t, and drifts off to sleep almost before he can finish the sentence.

Hye-jin leaves him in the bedroom and goes out to the bookshelf. She pulls a book off, leafs through it, and finds the photo of the family. Doo-shik comes out looking for her at that moment, and snatches the book and the picture away. They both apologize, her for looking through his things and him for snapping. When she asks who the people are in the photo, he says they’re just people he knows, and tries to get her to come back to the bedroom.

But Hye-jin confronts him about deflecting her questions about his past. She points out that she’s an open book, but he keeps parts of himself hidden. Out of all her bucket list items, this is the one she considers most important, and it’s also the only one he refuses to complete, and she wants to know why. She likes him enough to want to know everything about him – and to daydream about becoming a family one day – so why can’t he open up to her? Tears welling up, he says simply, “I’m sorry.” Hye-jin’s own eyes fill with tears as she says he’s becoming a stranger. “I don’t know what kind of person you are anymore,” she says. “I don’t know either,” Doo-shik responds.

 
EPILOGUE

One day while Bora and Yi-joon were at Doo-shik’s house with the hedgehog, Bora had again asked why he’d refused to take the hedgehog in for them. With a sad smile, he’d said that he must still be afraid of goodbyes.

 
COMMENTS

Goodness, that was intense.

Most of all, I really felt for Yoon-kyung in this episode. Her frustration with Geum-chul has been building over the past few episodes, and it was hard to watch her sunny smile slip lower as she felt less and less appreciated. I cried when Hye-jin tied her shoe and validated everything she’d just expressed to Geum-chul and watched bounce right off his ears. I do hope the two of them have arrived at a place of better understanding and partnership (though I also know it’s easy to make promises when you’ve just come through a traumatic event together). After Doo-shik’s speech to Geum-chul, I also wonder just how young Yoon-kyung is, and what kind of dreams she’d had for her life before getting pregnant and married.

I found it interesting that she and Hye-jin were so envious of each other’s relationships, and yet simultaneously feeling insecure in their own. Yes, it makes sense that insecurity leads to being envious of someone else, but what I mean is it’s interesting that the very object of one person’s envy could be feeling that same level of insecurity, if not more. And, as we saw with Yoon-kyung, placing someone on a pedestal by only focusing on the enviable parts of their life only serves to isolate them in their fears and struggles.

And I guess, in a way, Doo-shik has done that to himself. No one can pity him for what he’s gone through, but at the same time, no one can offer him sympathy or support. I get Hye-jin’s desire to know what Doo-shik is hiding from her, and even her frustration with him evading her questions. But at the same time, it frustrates me that she’s so insistent on pushing him to tell her before he’s necessarily ready. The sentiment of not wanting to have any secrets sounds nice on paper, but I’m not convinced it’s always healthy – or possible. And I definitely don’t think it’s ever something that should be demanded.

The question of how they’ll reconcile their lifestyles and dreams is a big one, and I’m not sure it’ll be resolved in the best way. I’ve seen real-life examples of one spouse giving up their dream in favor of the other, and while it can work, it can also breed resentment. Hye-jin clearly loves her job as a dentist and cares about her patients, and enjoys the Seoul lifestyle, but it’s also pretty clear that she’s still driven by a need to impress people. It feels like the show is aiming to have her choose love over money, and perhaps even frame her love of the city as nothing more than materialism. But the only choices in life aren’t enjoying the small things vs. chasing material wealth. There’s a lot more nuance and variety of preferences out there.

Speaking of different dreams, I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about the Sung-hyun/Ji-won angle until this episode, but I actually kind of like it. It seemed odd that he was still so hung up on Hye-jin after so many years and yet never contacted her – but like Doo-shik said, I don’t think he was quite as hung up on her as it seemed. Rather, bumping into her by coincidence brought all of those feelings he’d had for back to surface all over again, and he genuinely thought he’d been given a second chance. But at the same time, he had his own life with complex relationships outside of that. I wonder what it would be like to watch this story with him and Ji-won as the leads, and Hye-jin as the first love side character – I would really love to see those hotel room brainstorming sessions.

And then there’s Young-guk and Hwa-jung. I will say, this was the first time I felt actual sympathy for Young-guk (when he sincerely apologized and wished for her to find someone better suited for her). But – while I’m all for reconciliation as a general concept – I’m honestly not of the opinion that they ever should have gotten married in the first place. It only made the both of them miserable for years on end, to the point they can’t even be in the same room without sniping at each other. Sure, people can change and find both love and forgiveness for someone who once deeply hurt them. But they don’t have to. Regardless of whether Hwa-jung does go on that blind date and/or remarry, I’d much rather see her and Young-guk learn to celebrate Yi-joon’s birthday together without fighting, while still living their separate lives.

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Hye-jin disappointed me with her classmates, then even more so when she pressured Du-shik to talk about his past. It's not a smart way to get a person to let down their defences. She's always been a bit tone deaf with people though.

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Guess people indeed don't change that fast...

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I was sad that he went along with her request regarding her classmates.

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Me too.

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Dramaland girlfriends were pretty awful in this week :) (Yumi's cells:) But there goes the worst girlfriend awards to Hye-jin. She seemed a pretty solid character since the beginning I didn't understand why she is that much insisting !Takes time to open up and talk about yourself . She is a city girl so should already now that . Yoon-kyung burst was amazing to watch like previous episode's 'socks' incident. I have been there many times :) This episode was the weakest for me so far .

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Hye jin really is like a buldozer than doesn't stop a moment sometimes to think from other perspective aside from her needs...

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I disliked what Hye-jin did, but it made me realize that both her and Doo-shik are really alike with their bulldozer-y ways. And it sort of makes sense that they're together since they can take equal turns being the bulldozer and being bulldozered.

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Before people here start giving Hyejin shit, you need to realize she isn't demanding for Dusik to open up about his entire life story. She just wants to know if Dusik even wants to or likes her enough to think of a future with her. When you're in a relationship in your 30s you usually start to think about settling with that person. She's always been someone who likes to plan ahead and after seeing Dusik look at that baby, you can't blame her for craving a future family with him.
The sad part is Dusik is giving the most vaguest answers whenever she tries to get him to talk about their future.
Keep in mind she still doesn't know about his trauma or past yet.

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Thing is, they haven’t even been dating long. Regardless of their ages, it’s rarely couples plan for the future not even a year into the relationship. Also, rather than “forcing” him to open to her just to be with her, she could just wait for him to be comfortable enough to open up to her in due time. If she truly loves him. But this is dramaland and I find the most kdrama love conflicts, one or both of the leads have annoying decisions anyway.

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Thank you mistyisles for the review and share the same view with your comments. So cute n surprise eun n guem dense brothers...
I remember in the earlier ep, dushik ask hyejin why she moves to gongin. She hesistated n dushik told her if she is not comfortable, she need not tell him. She did not tell him n instead share her mother story, which is true but that is not the reason of what makes her move to gongin. Yet she has always want to move back to Seoul, for battle at Seoul proving she has made it? Why so hung up on Seoul when she said she likes everything in gongin n most of all dushik.
Hyejin seems to be the type to say what she wants but not taking consideration of how the receipent will feel. Dushik git wet from the rain n dozing off n she kept asking hin how many children he would like to have, first 1 like to have girl or boy. The photo does not have dushik, the way hyejin confront him to the point of saying she does not know him n he has become a stranger while dushik is tearing, she does not think why he is tearing. Its not like the photo is dushik with the kid n lady n she should be glad n not take it to the extreme like dushik kill them. She could have show some respect to apologes first n says the kid is cute are they your relatives n dushik might feel more at ease than feeling his battle of his pain, tearing up.
I like mi sun she is mature n sensible n very suitable for eun. I like dushik n sh friendship n dushik evaluatiin on jiwon help sh to understand jiwon better. Glad sh also agrees that he is not that affected by hyejin rejection. The childbirth n what a woman went thru as wife n mother are brought up in the show n how husband can support the wife.
I am not sure if young n hwa are unhappy in marriage, i remember he woke up n was happy hwa makes soup to clear his liquor n thats when hwa kick him out cos she heard his careless view about marriage. After divorce, they still care for each other.
Ep 14 is heart breaking, cry for dushik n 15 would be worse n for the 1st time, wishing main leads will break up for good if hyejin continue to be this immature, a marriage will work if dushik becomes henpeck n it's not healthy - saw dushik bucklist, he cross out make hyejin happy n wrote to be happy with hyejin for a long time, that will mean not just hyejin happy, he too must be happy.

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Hyejin way of pushing using marriage n taking a break is not helping dushik to say what had happen to him (n did she not think it may be something uncomfortable to say n how hyejin will judge him), she is making things hard for herself as well.

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I think about Seoul Hye Jin is more about how others view her as she cares very much about that.
Just like how she always asks Du Shik's future career and if he will go back at a desk job...She cares how others will look at him..

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Absolutely agree with you. Dushik has never stopped her from going back to seoul n in fact he reminded her when she order lots of goods just to battle it out at seoul. I can understand hyejin wanting to know dushik past but her approached has always make things difficult for herself n others n if dushik had not helped her make up with the villagers, she will flop hard. I can understand that dushik should say give him more time but hyejin not one with patient unless she sees that is the right thing to do, as can see how she pushes her buckedlist. Seeing someone tearing up, a mature person will not push but assure the person to talk about it when ready. Dushik has been very supportive n understanding of boyfriend n good n to everyone in the villages
I think this show is showing us different type of couples n relationship. In ep 14, misun n eun talk about marriage n children is at appropriate time n tone, it's mature n sweet. Like how geum became to understand more of yoon hearing dushik's perspective. I like yijun the best, thoughtful, mature, considerate, appreciative n understanding. Bora is cute n straightforward, she is fun. Young n hwa, glad his ideal of first love is thrown out n had closure n realise how good n precious hwa is to him. First love is just first love if it did not turn out to be true love. I think young n hwa realise their true love.

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Personally, even though Hye-Jin is rather pushy about Du-Shik opening up regarding his past, his vague answers, silence, or changing of the subject is also not okay. I wish he would at least say that he's not ready to talk about it yet, need some more time, or something among those lines.
Hye-Jin doesn't know how traumatic and bad it is, so she can just simply view it as a lack of trust and commitment. We, as viewers, have seen more of his struggles than she has, that's why we think that Hye-Jin should be more understanding. But if we think from her point of view, she can't know for sure. Not everyone is super observant of other people's emotions, especially someone like Hye-Jin who tends to put her guard up around other people.
I really hope that he explains that it's not an easy subject for him & that she accepts it and waits for him. But knowing drama logic, the past probably is going to blow up in everybodies faces. ;D

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or punch them in their face xD

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You explained it well that the problem wasn't about sharing secrets but rather his lack of response, but that does not excuse her behaviour, even if she is less observant. You just dont't share personal things with a person just because the other person does. Not even friendships work that way. Building trust is how you get people to open up and Hye Jin is not there yet atleast, looking at the next episode where her decision might make or break him.

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I agree, she is definitely way too aggressive about something that takes time and trust. Bad memories are really difficult to share. However, Hye-Jin's character has flaws, so it's at least consistent with them.
She kept pushing people away and not looking above the surface of things (and people), so it makes sense storytelling-wise, that she also fails to understand Do-Shik in this situation.
Let's hope that the drama resolves this in a nice way, that makes everyone see the error in their ways and become more understanding towards each other.
After all, personal growth is one of the basic and most satisfying plot points of dramas.

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Doo-shik’s vagueness would be super frustrating, but they haven’t been dating long either. I understood how Hye-jin felt but also wanted her to slow down. Some people need time to open up. I feel like she really wanted him to say he’d move back to Seoul someday and get a desk job, which is a whole other problem. But maybe if she heard his story, she wouldn’t feel that way. Anyway, I felt bad for both of them.

Yoon-kyung's dialogue about the things mothers go through after childbirth was really good. I was so mad at Geum-chul for not tying her shoelaces.

I never realized that Geum-chul and Eun-chul were brothers although the names should have given it away.

Go Eun-chul! Skipping those bases lol.

Bora and Yi-joon are precious.

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I didn't realize they were brothers either, I think probably because we haven't seen any interactions with them. Also Bo Ra sobbing about her mother made me cry too. Sweet child.

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Geum-chul and Eun-chul being brothers was such a shock since they're nothing alike except for being a little bit dense. Geum-chul is loud and impregnates gf before marriage. Eun-chul is quiet and has a super innocent approach to romance. His homerun is a kiss.

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I didn't mind her insisting since he has been pushing her out of her comfort zone from the beginning, it is only fair she does the same. My problem came when he refused to answer her. It is one thing if he told her I am not ready, but instead he just deflected or didn't answer. I know she understood he wasn't ready but HJ requires words. Tell her you will tell her later or you are not ready, but don't just sit there. He pushes her to do uncomfortable things in a physical manner and she pushes him mentally. It is a balance. You can't have one person giving her all in a relationship and another person not. It creates imbalance and you end up in their current situation.

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I’m glad to finally find a logical comment. I think the viewers seem to have forgotten how DS made her do a lot of things she didn't wanna do at the start, and the villagers basically expected her to adapt to their town overnight. And I agree, he could have just said he wasn’t ready to share with her. All she wanted was reassurance. From HJ’s perspective, she doesn’t know of the trauma he’s facing so how would she even know the depth of it and to give him time?

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Bora and Yi-joon are the most well-balanced pairing in this show. Wishing on every lightning strike is a wonderful way to turn something scary into a positive. That rear shot of them praying, with their little bare feet, was touching.
Is it just me, but was that the most honest portrayal of late-stage pregnancy in any Kdrama? She's living with full of knowledge of what's to come along with frayed nerves, pain and lack of sleep. I laughed at the hair pull because it was so real.
Meanwhile, couples therapy please for our OTP. I guess the "push-pull" theme of the actual cha cha dance is at play here. As for angst, it's pretty mild compared with other dramas (Brahms for instance).

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I love Bora & I jun, they are adorable. I especially enjoy Ijun’s reactions to Bora, he’s such an old soul!! And yeah, YK’s pregnancy is the most believable i’ve seen in kdrama

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Yes, I thought that was a very honest portrayal of late-stage pregnancy. Really good dialogue.

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Mostly cursing, eh? In my gal hiking group we cracked each other up with "tales from the delivery room". Because we know and love all the guys in our stories, we laughed. Hey they stuck around and helped raise their kids. Who could ask for anything more?
The bar is low.

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I think @mistyisles (thanks for her recap, by the way)'s analysis are all good, but after all, I am pretty sure the show is going a traditional and predictable way (and honestly, that's partly why the show's viewership is going so high), so don't give high hope on that (at least for one of those couples mentioned above, they've just found a way to get together again).

I still love Youngguk and Hwajung. Their relationship is still very touching, although, as mentioned above, their storyline is pretty predictable as the others. But I would said, if you Youngguk don't want to have her, I want to: she is one amazing being.

Yoonkyung is another amazing being in this show. Now I really want to know what her dream before having babies and marry. How much she has sacrifice for that guy (and in fact, many women in this show). This lead to another concern of mine: What is the screenwriter up to? If you are planning to promote a very traditional family value (like, women should sacrifice for their men), it's pretty sure I am not agreeing with this. I am a man, but if I want to love a woman, I want her to excel in her own right, and be intelligent and talent as much as she can, because if she can't, the relationship is actually very boring (See, I do have benefit in a modern relationship, and I don't think a traditional relationship is good for both side, although men may have "benefit" by having that authority, which seems garbage to me).

And, last but not least, that green and red dress Hyejin wearing on Dushik's birthday is so damn extremely ugly. How can she wear that? (Then I realize, IU was wearing that in one of her IG post, well ...)

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It looks like a Christmas dress! 😆 🤣 😆

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Kind of a gift to her boyfriend? Haha ...

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I don't think the show ever devalued women or said they must sacrifice for men.

1. In previous episode, Hye Jin buying herself an expensive necklace for which she later feels guilty, thinking she might have insinuated Du Shik's low income, but the drama portrayed Du Shik assuring her that was not the case.

"Woman should not worry about their partner's opinion when buying stuff for themselves out of their hard earned money."

2. Yoon Kyung' pregancy was all about how men take women for granted just because they are willing to pop out babies despite the agony.

" It does not mean there is no pain, but the thought of having our baby and raising our kid will make me forget the pain. "

3. Granma Gam-Ri always put her family before herself and kept saving money, but after Hye Jin's advice, she invested the money on her dental treatment.

" Love yourself before you love others. "

4. Hwa Jung is shown as a single mom of strength. Despite her yearnings for her ex husband, she never once stopped Yi Joon from interacting with his dad. She also told her son "even if you hadn't won the math prize, I would have treated you. ". She is raising her son with values.

5. Bora was always shown praising Yi Joon for his studies and other skills, but she ultimately surprised everyone with her singing skills and even grabbed the first prize in the town contest. Same with Ju Ri, she gets scolded by her dad for lack of academic concern, but she was shown to be talented in fashion.

6. Mi sun wanted "causual dating" with Eun Chul because she was afraid of relationships, before she ended up falling in love with him. In the next episode, she is shown even more awesome.

The list goes on and on. The drama isn't forcing traditional beliefs on anyone. It is rather showing a community of people with strength and flaws.

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Don't take me wrong, I just concern if it is going that way, I don't think it has already going that way yet, @emsel. On the other hand, I really appreciate what you have said. They are very good indeed.

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100% with you on the dress - it completely broke me out of immersion in the story. Fully hideous - go away Christmas Elf...

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I think Yun-kyung's sacrifice is not so much for Geum-cheol but for raising a kid. Children, lovely as they are, are like parasites - both in and out of the womb. They just eat up all your energy and time. And if you have them before all your friends do, that can leave you isolated.

Both Yoon-kyung and Geum-cheol are working parents, but Yoon-kyung, like many women, still end up with more housework and childrearing responsibilities and emotional labor.

I agree with that dress. I wonder how much they charge for that ugly thing. The clothing and makeup choices in this drama are really blah.

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I guess the dress is probably a PPL, @asianromance. It is a Gucci dress, like a lot of Shin Min-a's outfit in this very drama. What makes the dress worse on her because in IU's case (from the 4th photo onward), she at least understands the dress' design language, and made a hairstyle as well some gestures to showcase the dress (and she has no choice, since she is the Gucci ambassador in South Korea, and she is paid to do this). Shin Min-a simply wears it for the sake of wearing it, let along having the dress serve the purpose on storytelling.

(And by the way, even with a pair of IU-esque shortsighted eyes, I still don't think the dress is pretty, to say the least)

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The issue with Doo-Shik's past and Hye-Jin's way is she doesn't know that it's not about keeping secret but him being sick. He should at least tell her about his therapy and that he needs time.

Geum-chul was very frustrating with his wife and his daughter during all the show. Fortunately, Doo-Shik always is here to remind him that he's wrong and lucky to have a family. Yoon-Kyung made so many efforts and I was happy when she finally told him her struggles.

When Doo-Shik and Hye-Jin's couple has some troubles, the other couples are becoming stronger : Yoon-Kyung and Geum-Chul, Mi-sun and Eun-chul. And later I guess Hwa-jung and Young-guk, Sung-hyun and Ji-won.

Bora was so cute in this episode. She's always so strong so seing so scared was very sad. Yi-joon was so cute with her.

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along with others. I don't fault Hye jin for her pushing. Its super frustrating if a person who you love is constantly deflecting every question you ask about your past. even something as innocent as where you went to school, or what company you worked out. Part of the getting to know you stage is to ask. especially if the other person is very open. Du-shik is not blameless. He should be honest and say that he is not ready to talk and to give him some time. I think she would accept that from him and give him the time he needs. I cant speak for anyone else, but its very hard to be open and love someone in a relationshop, when you are dealing with major unhealed trauma.

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"Women empowering women". Thats what I thought when Hye Jin helped tie Yoon Kyung's shoe lace and they both conversed of how envious the other person is of their achievements in life.

Bora and Yi Joon scene made me emotional. Utterly adorable ❤ Such good acting by both the kids.

I really love the dialogues in this drama. After helping with Yoon Kyung's delivery, Hye Jin was at Du Shik's house when she said ," Our parents go through so much to let us into this world and living a happy life is how we pay for their efforts. "❤ Powerful lines that one should think of before giving up on life.

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Boy the pairings were really busy this week huh

I have one question for people saying Hye-jin is the worst girlfriend: have you ever dated anyone?
If the answer is 'yes' (or at least, 'I wanted to'), then you must know that when you like someone, you want to know everything about them - their past, their present, and their future. The problem with Du-shik is that he only gives Hye-jin crumbs about his present. He won't talk about his past, and he's super vague about his future, which is pretty hurtful when you want to be a part of your SO's future 🤷‍♀️ He should at least tell her he needs a little time before he's ready to share his past. Hye-jin isn't a bad partner, she's a *normal* one. I will say, though, that I was annoyed Hye-jin didn't tell her classmates to f off. It's the only character development I wanted😒

Young-guk and Hwa-jung continue to tug on my heartstrings, despite my better judgment. He can finally see what he'd had and lost; she regrets making him marry her, even though she obviously still loves him 🤧

Mi-sun and Eun-cheol continue to be adorable, bless their little hearts 🤭

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Thank you @mistyisles for your recap and comments. I agree, this episode was intense, and not always in a good way for the viewers although I thought the actors did an excellent job. In my view the men all failed in some way in this episode. The plight of Yoon-Kyung made me cry, both when she hopefully asked for a date only to be shot down by self-absorbed Geum-Chul and then when he made fun of her about tying her shoelaces and she sobbed in grief and frustration. Running out to get a durian in apology was funny but also showed how clueless he is and will remain. Meanwhile, Sung-Hyun was just about to have a moment with Ji-won and he backed away to take a call. It was revealing and showed why, even though he's a nice guy, he was always late with Hye-Jin. As for the main couple--this episode hurt. Although I did chuckle at the reaction of the girlfriends at the country club to Du-Shik as he walked in (what--you didn't recognize how good looking he was before, because he was in a rugged work outfit rather than stylish clothes?) but then Hye-Jin instead of being happy and proud at how he impressed them was worried about the future with Du-Shik and he was evasive as always. And then the end! I understand his trauma, so he maybe couldn't talk about that, but he could have at least indicated he still loved her in some way. But he didn't, at least at this key moment. Just like @mistyisles I'm afraid that regardless of the happy ending this series writes for them, this couple are not suited for each other--at least in my fantasy world (LOL!)

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This episode had me roll my eyes. I was disappointed by Hye Jin's lack of character development. I would think by now Hye Jin would have understood that the sizing up, the "I got this so I am better than you" kind of talk is actually very useless, as I thought Du shik had been able to show her that you can't base your life on materialistic things only. I thought she would have actually talked back to her friends, not hiding, not trying so hard to meet their expectations. So finally, none of the leads actually moved forward. What is their relationship based on then? And I was completely confused by what she was asking of Du Shik. He has changed? He is drifting away? No honey, the guy has always been this way! Why are you now trying to make him someone he is not! And the birth at home, so unrealistic. Pffffttt!

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