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Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha: Episode 14

Our couple might be happy together, but they’ve hit an impasse in their relationship that threatens their future together. While our dentist hits the brakes, our village chief is left shell-shocked, and forced to come face-to-face not only with the wall around his heart, but with his past.

 
EPISODE 14 RECAP

We open up with the same painful scene between Hye-jin and Doo-shik — she confronts him on why he won’t open up to her. She says he’s changing and drifting away (is he though?) and that she doesn’t know him anymore. All of a sudden it’s put up an iron wall between them; Hye-jin leaves upset. Doo-shik stands there in shock with his eyes welled with tears.

The upsetness hits Hye-jin once she’s outside. She runs into Hwa-jung and can only keep on her happy face for so long. She weeps openly. Hwa-jung is kind and encourages her over breakfast.

However, Hwa-jung is nobody’s fool and knows there’s a lovers’ spat going on. She offers to be Hye-jin’s confidant, and shares what she knows about Doo-shik’s past. She relates how when he returned to Gongjin after college and military service he was broken. Hye-jin says that Doo-shik has told her nothing about himself; Hwa-jung counters that she’s never seen him happier and very maturely explains that it’s not easy for him to trust and open up to others.

Doo-shik is distressed; he calls Hye-jin, but gets no answer. Instead, he heads out to help in the village, walking past a woman who’s driving into town — it’s the same woman in his hidden photo.

The woman is JI SUN-AH (Kim Ji-hyun), Sung-hyun’s older sister. She’s brought her adorable son for a visit, and he clearly adores his uncle. The two catch up with some good old-fashioned sibling banter. We learn that Sung-hyun missed her wedding all those years ago because he was working out of the country, and that Sun-ah has long been meaning to visit Gongjin because “someone she knows” always talked about their hometown. Uh-oh.

Hye-jin’s taken a nap and wakes up to see the missed call from Doo-shik. He apologizes and wants to meet up with her right way to finish their conversation, but Hye-jin says she doesn’t want to see him and they need some time apart. Not to break up — just because she says they need time to get to a place where Doo-shik no longer says “Sorry” as a replacement for opening his heart.

Eun-chul delivers a gift to Mi-sun at the clinic and she squeals with happiness after he leaves. Hye-jin gloomily tells her to enjoy the honeymoon phase, but their discussion of her relationship with Doo-shik is interrupted by Cho-hee’s arrival. Her wisdom teeth are only just coming in, and Hye-jin links it to the very unscientific theory that they emerge as you get wiser about love. Cho-hee looks disconcerted.

A flashback shows us Cho-hee and Hwa-jung bonding back in the day. They’re interrupted by her desperate and scolding mother. She says she can see what’s going on with Cho-hee and that if she keeps it up her brother will have her locked up in an institution (geez!). Hwa-jung was around the corner and probably knows it all.

Hye-jin encourages Cho-hee to be brave and face it (her tooth extractions, but we know what Cho-hee is really hearing). Meanwhile, Doo-shik gazes sadly at Hye-jin’s alcohol fermenting on his shelf.

Later that night, Doo-shik sneaks over to Hye-jin’s house and lingers outside, hiding behind a column when she pokes her head out the window. The next morning, Mi-sun is flitting around in the adorable dress that Eun-chul bought her. It’s expensive and trendy, and Mi-sun happily relates how Eun-chul’s been spending a ton, wooing her with well-researched and constant gifts.

Later, she tries to tell him that it’s not necessary, and that his intentions matter more. When Eun-chul steps away and Mi-sun overhears his phone conversation, she assumes he’s taking bribes to earn the money for her designer gifts.

Young-guk and Cho-hee do some village duty and Cho-hee takes the opportunity to tell him how surprised she was to hear that he and Hwa-jung had gotten divorced. We flashback yet again to their happy times as a threesome in the past, but for what feels like the first time, we see Hwa-jung and Young-guk being cute together.

Back in the present, Cho-hee tells Young-guk how much she envied their relationship and wished she had someone who was by her side in the same way. Young-guk admits that he now realizes he took his relationship and marriage for granted, and didn’t realize how precious it was at the time. Cho-hee urges him not to lose Hwa-jung a second time. They agree to muster up courage together.

Hye-jin is also on village duty, and runs into Doo-shik at the recycling. He tries to help her but she’s cold as ice. She asks if he has anything to say to her, and his silence confirms what she already knows. Doo-shik watches her walk away.

That night, Mi-sun stakes out Eun-chul’s mysterious errand. Once she sees the exchange of a briefcase, she freaks out and jumps into the scene begging him to not take bribes for her sake. She thinks she’s selling a gun illegally, but it turns out to be a toy, and Eun-chul is a collector who’s been selling off his replicas (quite legally).

The incident resolves with a nice heart-to-heart where we see their earnestness towards each other. Mi-sun says they should date with the intention of marrying and Eun-chul says that was his intention all along. He then announces he’s skipping a few steps and gives her a nice smooch.

Nam-sook heads to Hwa-jung’s restaurant and sees her sitting there alone in the dark, drinking. The two share drinks and Hwa-jung opens up, saying that the emotions she ignored for so long are rotting inside her.

Nam-sook knows that Hwa-jung still loves her husband, and Hwa-jung remembers how good Young-guk was to her ailing mother. She believes that she married him for the wrong reasons and even though Nam-sook tries to talk sense into her, Hwa-jung says she agreed to a blind date and then falls down drunk at the table.

Nam-sook tells a handy white lie and gets Young-guk to rush to the restaurant at top speed (thinking his ex-wife is drinking till all hours with her blind date). When Hwa-jung wakes up she’s flustered, but then even more so when Young-guk tells her not to go on the blind date.

He then offers her an incredibly heartfelt apology, followed by a confession, followed by an earnest request for them to start over together. Hwa-jung takes out 15 years of emotions on him, but pretty soon they are hugging and crying together.

The next day, Sung-hyun runs into Do-ha, who says they need some items for the shoot. Sung-hyun takes out his phone, opens it up into a handy PPL note-taking device, and is ready to go when he hears the town gossip about Doo-shik and Hye-jin’s falling out. He drops everything and runs to Doo-shik.

Sung-hyun doesn’t beat around the bush, tells him what he heard, and the two share thoughts. Sung-hyun is anxious for them to get back together, but Doo-shik says he doesn’t feel worthy of Hye-jin, who he says is transparent, honest, and brave — unlike him.

Sung-hyun teases him but also encourages him to do the same, and put his cards on the table. Doo-shik worries that she’ll be disappointed in him, but Sung-hyun tells him that Hye-jin isn’t like that.

Sung-hyun heads out with Ji-won, who’s annoyed to hear that he’s distracted solely because of the fact that Doo-shik and Hye-jin have hit a rough patch. Ji-won chews him out and tells him to focus on healing his own heartbreak instead of worrying about theirs.

He tells her that he’s actually fine — he feels great, actually, and the perky music that pops on in the background convinces us that it’s true. Then Sung-hyun almost gets them in a wreck while staring at Ji-won instead of the road ahead.

There’s a cooler full of home cooked food at Hye-jin’s front door, and her step-mother says she made extra so she could share it with Doo-shik. Her parents are so invested in her relationship that it gives her a new perspective. She thinks back to all their meaningful times when Doo-shik really did display his heart, and Hwa-jung’s words echo in her head: You can be his rock and someone he opens up to.

At home, Doo-shik is staring down at the photo he had tried to hide from Hye-jin. Oh boy, and this time we see Sun-ah, along with her husband and son when he was still a baby. “Hyung…” whispers Doo-shik.

In flashback, we see that his hyung was PARK JUNG-WOO (yay, cameo by Oh Eui-shik). In Doo-shik’s university days, the two were friends, and Jung-woo even set up the table for the memorial service of Doo-shik’s grandfather. It’s clear they had a deep friendship.

At long last we see the inception of the black suit that’s been haunting Doo-shik’s mind (and closet). He was in the store trying it on awkwardly, and Sun-ah (whom he calls noona) tells him it looks great. Then Jung-woo (who’s clearly married to her at the time due to how she addresses him) pops up around the corner and teases him about how great he looks. Jung-woo buys him the suit as a congratulatory gift for his new internship at the company where Jung-woo also works. They promise to go fishing together at Gongjin. It’s very touching, which most likely means tragedy is on the way.

Sure enough, the next scene is Sun-ah at Jung-woo’s funeral sitting there in despair with their young son. Doo-shik struggles to get himself to go into the room (wearing the black suit no less), and when she sees him, Sun-ah jumps to her feet and takes out her grief (as anger) against him. Sun-ah screeches that Doo-shik should have been the one to die, not her husband. All poor Doo-shik can do is stand there and cry and say he’s sorry.

Back in the present, Doo-shik wipes away new tears over the photograph when he hears a knock at the door. It’s Hye-jin, and a flood of emotions pass over Doo-shik’s face (nice job, Kim Sun-ho!). Hye-jin asks if she can come in.

Sung-hyun and Ji-won are pulling yet another all-nighter. When her glasses fog up over her hot beverage, he sweetly pulls them off and wipes them for her. Ji-won prickles up (I love her) and asks why he took off her “shield” without her permission.

Sung-hyun starts negotiating with her over salary, but he admits that he not only heard that she hasn’t signed a new contract yet, but that he can’t imagine working without her. There is so much more they dreamed of producing together. She warms up when they’re discussing all their past passion projects. Sung-hyun says he’s going to court her like all the other directors are. He values her more than he realized. She pretends she’s unmoved, but then burns her mouth on her tea.

Back at Doo-shik’s house, Hye-jin is delivering half of the side dishes. Then she announces she’s done thinking about their relationship. Patience isn’t her strong suit, she makes quick decisions, and hates ambiguity (all this checks out pretty well with what we’ve seen of her). That being said, she tells Doo-shik that if he can promise to open up to her one day, she is willing to wait for it.

Her gentler approach of hoping he’ll open up one day instead of forcing it now works for her, and she tells him she doesn’t need the break anymore. Doo-shik can barely get a word in here if he wanted to, but it’s enough for Hye-jin that he confirms that she is what he wants in his future.

Sung-hyun and crew wrap up their shoot, and everyone is very thankful to Doo-shik for his help on the project.

Gam-ri borrows a stock pot to make food for the big wrap-up party, and this serves as a way for Gam-ri to share more wisdom with Doo-shik: Just go tell her you’re sorry and give her a hug. She encourages him not to lose such a special relationship and to spend his life with someone that makes him happy. Doo-shik asks if he’s allowed to be that happy, and Gam-ri insists that he put the past aside; he deserves to be happy.

At her clinic, Hye-jin gets a call from a sunbae who offers her a professorship at her school — in Seoul.

On her way to the wrap-up party, Hye-jin runs into Doo-shik, who gives her a meaningful smile (Kim Sun-ho killing it with the eye-acting in this episode!). “Let’s go,” he says as she returns his smile.

The wrap-up party is very sweet and full of home cooked food. June adorably asks to visit Gam-ri, something is different between Young-guk and Hwa-jung (for which Nam-sook rightly takes credit), and Sung-hyun gives a thank you speech and is then forced to sing. His voice is gorgeous, and the song is full of meaning. Doo-shik gives a long yearning look over at Hye-jin.

After the song, Doo-shik makes a beeline for Hye-jin and leans over her, asking if they can talk. He walks far away at top speed with her trailing behind him. He then asks her to come over after the party and says he has something to tell her and it will take a long time. Hye-jin agrees and seems touched. The two agree to talk about everything later.

While our pair is away, the rest of the village gossip about them, pointing out that Doo-shik now calls her “Hye-jin-ah,” but also rightly pointing out that Hye-jin still only calls him Chief Hong.

This causes Do-ha to hear Doo-shik’s full name for the first time. When Doo-shik and Hye-jin return, Do-ha runs up to him aggressively, asking if he worked at YK Asset Management and if he knows Kim Ki-hoon. Doo-shik’s face drops (which Hye-jin notices) and the music gets sinister.

In flashback we see Doo-shik at his fancy job, stopping on the way into the building to give the security guard a drink he picked up. We call back to Do-ha explaining that his father is paraplegic.

Doo-shik looks shocked, while Do-ha calls him a bastard and punches him. Doo-shik looks so horrified he doesn’t even feel the blow.

EPILOGUE

Doo-shik pours over “Doo-shik and Hye-jin’s Bucket List,” adding a #6 entry that reads, “Make you happy.” But then he crosses it out with a smile and changes it to read: “Be happy with you for a very long time.”

 
COMMENTS

Let’s start from the top, shall we? I’m no fan of the requisite break-up, and that early confrontation between Hye-jin and Doo-shik didn’t work for me much at all. I know she’s frustrated with his closed-off-ness, but her sudden and huffy reaction seemed pretty off-putting to me. So, while I can completely understand her frustration with Doo-shik on paper (and I would probably be with her IRL), in the drama, it was hard for me not to side with Doo-shik. Poor guy is nothing if not earnest, and trying to fight off his demons as best he can.

Luckily, their breakup (or “pause,” if you will) was subtle compared to other dramas, and I like where Hye-jin landed at the end of the episode (and that this wasn’t dragged out longer than a single episode). Her new willingness to wait for him made a lot more sense, and I only wish she had brought a little more gentleness to the table, since she does know more than she thinks about his emotional scars.

Kim Sun-ho really got me this episode — must be those sad, worried eyes! I loved him in almost every scene, particularly when he’s looking over at Hye-jin while Sung-hyun was singing. But then again, there’s nothing quite as riveting as a tortured hero (in my book, anyway).

While I have no doubt the two will have their heart-to-heart, the evening plans seem a bit bungled at the moment. Do-ha having a bigger role to play shocks me — in a good way! I like to think the drama was being purposeful where it seemed tangential, so that makes me happy, and makes me want to forgive the laggy script last week.

We’ll have to wait for our final week for all of Doo-shik’s backstory to come out, but I like how much was teased out with Sun-ah and Jung-woo in this episode. The warmth we saw in those flashbacks was well-represented, and so the hurt that scars that Doo-shik stings all the more.

In addition to what we saw of Hye-jin and Doo-shik in this episode (or rather, didn’t see of them), we got a lot more plot movement for our supporting village characters. The newborn might not be mentioned at all (weird, right?) but there’s forward motion with Young-guk and Hwa-jung, with Sung-hyun and Ji-won, and all-but-confirmation of Cho-hee’s heart.

I wish I could say I’m deeply invested in these side characters and their travails, but I’m honestly not. Perhaps they’ve dragged on a bit too long, and my interest has waned. And the one side story that would have been a hoot (a June and Joo-ri friendship) wasn’t touched at all in recent episodes. For shame.

With two episodes to go, we have a lot of backstory to fill in, a lot of Hye-jin/Doo-shik matters to resolve, and a happy ending to land on. Because after all the time we’ve spent in the happy, gossipy Gongjin, I don’t think I’ll be satisfied if this drama doesn’t end with a colorful village wedding.

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The woman is JI SUN-AH (Kim Ji-hyun), Sung-hyun’s older sister.

Because of course she is.

It’s very touching, which most likely means tragedy is on the way.

Someone has been watching too many kdramas.

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Pretty sure Dramabeans made a mistake? Cos he clearly referred to her mom as 이모 (aunt)?

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I thought she was a cousin too.

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What Young-guk and Hwa-jung have isn't love, it's familiarity. They're just used to having each other in their lives. I disagree with them getting back together.

Noona is on my shit list as soon as she told Doo-shik he should've been the one to die. All these people are blaming him, even Doo-shik himself, but I predict it'll be One Big Misunderstanding and not Doo-shik’s fault at all. Sung-hyun as our perfect second lead will not only not blame Doo-shik for his brother-in-law's death, but he'll play mediator between Sun-ah and Do-ha.

I lmaoed at Mi-sun busting Eun-chul's sale transaction. So this already rules out Doo-shik and Eun-chul as the mysterious lottery winner.

My favorite thing is how Granny Gam-ri has adopted June as her grandson. Everyone was right about Cho-hee. Thanks a lot for recapping, @missvictrix!

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Noona is at the top of the shit list and i don’t know if the reasoning behind the mystery can redeem her actions. Probably not.

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Yes to not having Young Guk and Hwa Jung getting back together, romantically. I agree that they dont actually love each other that way. But I still really wanted them to reconcile. And be friends. It would have been more endearing if it was written that way. Oh well.

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Among the camp that didn't want Young Guk and Hwa Jung getting back together.
I quite think the company were Du Shik worked went under and Do ha father lost his money that might have invested and had an accident or tried to kill himself...Curious as well if his friedn died by accident(trying to save the man or a normal one) or killed himself because of the company downfall...We saw in the preview that Du Shik also was in a very dark place before going back to Gongjin,not to spoil it.
But that is my scenario so we'll get to see...

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It was a heavy episode.

I don't even know what to say this episode. Seeing Du-shik in this cage of pain reminds me of myself too. We both have tried to MOVE ON using every effort possible, but it's really has been hard seeing the past catching up slowly on us. Even if that suit brings him mixed feelings,he just can't throw it away.

We just have two episodes left, and I'm skeptical over how the writer is going to close this up because the darkness on that umbrella over Du-shik is really thick.

Unlike we the viewers who just can't help but feel for Du-shik because we were allowed to see his pain, Hye-jin knows nothing more than theories and speculations from the village folks. I understand her impatience but looking at Du-shik alone especially his state in this episode should have at least told her something.

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This!

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I agree too! Here is what bothered me about this last episode (and actually the 1 before) Up to episode 10, even though Chief Hong and Hye Jin were constantly bickering (and he was lecturing her way too much in a way that I found a little annoying) there was clear chemistry between them. Now, this episode, its clear that Chief Hong still loves her by the way he behaves, but Hye Jin was very cold and indifferent, EVEN when she was saying she was going to give him a "break" and still keep dating him. So either the show and writers are trying to portray that she does not really understand that she still loves him (which could be) OR they aren't conveying the character Hye Jin's continued desire to be with Du-shik. What bothered me was both when Hye Jin announced she was still willing to date AND when Du-shik made it clear he was going to reveal all to her near the end of the episode, she didn't show any signs of affection at all--even to take a step closer to him. When Sung Hyun was singing, Du-Shik was gazing at Hye Jin, and she was smiling at Sung Hyun (even though wasn't he singing to Ji-Won?)
Since I think both of them are very good actors, and the early chemistry was obvious, this was clearly intentional. But why?

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You are right. I still can't figure out what the writer is trying to prove with Hye-jin's character. Her disposition towards Du-shik this episode slightly contrasts her character for the past episodes. Or is this a side of her that we have not seen? Her face seems blank of affection.

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It was kinda frustrating to see every people saying to Doo-Shik he should talk to Hye-Jin.

Guys, he didn't talk about it during 5 years! Nobody has the slightest idea what happened and he should talk like that after weeks of dating...

I understand her frustration but I don't think she made the good choices. She sends mixed messages too. He's afraid of abandonning and she doesn't know what she wants for her future. She talks about Seoul, marriage, family ; asked him about the fact he will take a real job. And now, she got an offer to go back in Seoul.

The poor guy, how can you say to someone that he should be the one who died? I really wonder because I don't think any pain can justify it. (The fact the actress was the villain in Hundred Million Stars From the Sky doesn't help) But I think she came there because she has some regrets.

It's hard to see Doo-Shik not smiling anymore :(

I was happy for Nam-sook and Young-guk. They love and care each other. Their marriage had highs and lows and sadly they didn't discuss about it.

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I didn't expect conflict with Do Ha because of his father and Dushik relationship with him and his hyung's family. Is it related with 1 case only or different? many people assumed it can relate to Hyujin car accident, but I doubt it because it happened when Hye Jin in SHS not in 5 years time span.
So many mysteries have to unfold for the last 2 episodes, hopefully the writer can wrap it up well

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IMO, it will be make more sense if it is multiple cases that made Dushik so depressed. My guess is two cases, one with hyung and one with doha's father, but the two somehow related indirectly.
Ah.. the car accident theory is related to the 7year-love-by-destiny prompt... which, I prefer to let it loose, though...

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While I appreciate that they finally let us see what Dushik's trauma is, the way they handled it in this show is disappointing as now we are only left with 2 eps to wrap it up. Which means they may end up trivializing this story for a happy ending and just chalk it up as love solves 5 years worth of emotional trauma (NOT!). They could have removed the fluff episodes so this is tackled instead.

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Yes yes yes!

I was turned off by the sudden shift in Hye Jin a few eps back. There was no build up whatsoever for her to say that she doesnt know who Chief Hong is anymore. Like, how can she say this?! It makes no sense. And I hate that Chief Hong is being forced, literally into talking about his trauma to "keep" the girl.

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"There was no build up whatsoever for her to say that she doesnt know who Chief Hong is anymore."
--- Exactly!!! Like where did "that" come from?!? They should have showed that... sometimes showing Du-sik solemn/thoughtful face wasn't enough to hint that since they didn't even show Hye-Jin noticing it.

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I wish Hye-jin had more gently confronted Du-shik about his mask. It was so sudden in this episode. Like @missvictrix says, he didn’t change, she just suddenly brought it up as a problem. Then suddenly let it go.
It would have been way more moving if she had taken her waiting stance from the beginning. (And she still could have chatted it over with the villagers) That would have made more story sense to me…
That said, I was so relieved that their walk into nowhere at the end of the episode was to arrange a proper chat instead of to nobly break up. I was getting worried with the Du-shik sad eyes!

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i dont know why people talk about Hyejin like she is the bad girlfriend. she know nothing about him, she just wants reassurance from him about how the relationship going to be in the future. when she gets it in this episode she is willing to wait for him. i dont blame him either because its hard to talk about his trauma. i notice since he is dating her, he more often smiling but his eyes keep getting sadder? because the happier he gets he keep feeling that he doesn't deserve this? (maybe because this drama often use closeup scene and i keep looking his eyes or im just seeing things idk) its subtle but Kim Seonho really good at portraying Hong Dushik trauma specially in this episode

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But Hye Jin's sudden "let's have a break" seemed came out of nowhere. It's hard to relate to her when they came from the golf outing where she actually made Chief Hong "behave" in a way that would be acceptable to her friends. At times she really does come out superficial and then suddenly she's asking him to pour out his heart to her. And in all instances that she asked him, it never came to a point yet that him not saying anything actually caused serious conflict between them. At least not yet.

So I go back, I feel that the conflict was forced and seemed out of place.

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she makes it clear that she doesnt wanna break up with him tho? but she knows that she couldnt act like nothing happen and Dushik wont talks about his thing anytime sooner so its the rational solution for both of them. they talk and think before they make the decision so i think its make sense and stays in the character for both Hyejin and Dushik.

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I agree that they are true to the characters. And I'd expect that this would really be a conflict in their relationship down the road. But not early on and when they are just starting out. Like saying that she feels like she doesnt know Chief Hong anymore when she literally barely know him, that's a misstep there for me. But then again I still want these two to work out. They're too cute together to hate the Show because of it.

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Hye Jin is not a bad girlfriend, but for someone who says "wanting to know all about their partner with whom they are interested in sharing a future", she is ready to take flight at the first chance. She is consistently shown to value "Seoul life" more than living in a sea-side town with less glitz. She expects him to get a regular salaried job down the life, if they are taking their relationship up a notch, but she herself keeps beating around the bush instead of clearly stating her priorities. In short, a person who clearly wants someone to share their personal life wouldn't be calculative and would rather approach them slowly instead of being aggressive.

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I'm glad Hwa-jung told Hye-jin that opening up is not easy for everyone, and she listened. While I understand Hye-jin needing verbal reassurance from Doo-shik, I think his actions have shown he's serious about their relationship.

I thought the episode did a good job showing why Doo-shik is so afraid of opening up.The flashback of Jung-woo preparing the memorial table for Doo-shik’s grandfather was very effective, making me instantly care about him and their relationship.

So Cho-hee is gay. I was happy her dialogue emphasized it isn’t a sickness.

I love Hwa-jung. I didn’t want her and Young-guk to get back together, but if she’s happy, I guess it's okay.

I really thought Eun-chul was the lottery winner, but if he’s selling his collectibles to buy Mi-sun expensive gifts, I guess not.

The ending took me by surprise. I always roll my eyes at the coincidences in k-dramas but in this case, I’m sort of glad everyone from this past incident is connected to Sung-hyun. He should be able to give gentle and straightforward advice.

So Hye-jin got a job offer in Seoul. My Spidey senses foresee separation and timeslip of a year (she’ll be back when the alcohol he made for her is ready).

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Your second paragraph is right on point👍

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That might also be what she needs to finally realize what she truly wants and the life that makes her happy and we all know by the end she will realize the glitter of Seoul will not be part of her desired life anymore but besides Du Shik and Gongjin and will fully embrace it...
I confess i actually believed she realized already she is happy after her trip in Seoul but guess she needs something more powerful...

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I think she is happy in Gongjin but envisions moving back to Seoul down the line with Doo-shik, who will return to a "real" job. She needs to decide if she can truly commit to him even if that will never happen IMO.

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I agree! Even for real life couples when one moves to be with the other, it's not an easy sacrifice and even after the move, one can feel trapped no matter how much they love their spouse. Location incompatibility can cause friction. You can like a town, but living in it 24/7 for years and maybe for the rest of your life bears some careful consideration. I think a time skip will work. I side-eye those hallmark movies where an idyllic holiday week in a rural town with a hunky man is all it takes for the woman to settle there.

Hye-jin is incredibly lucky that she can at least drive to Seoul and do weekend trips there. And her best friend will likely marry and live there too. Like even if you're a city person moving to the rural areas for your love, having a job in your profession and a best friend there is like the best possible version of that move.

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IMO, because Hyejin is Hyejin afterall.. I mean, from the very first, she represents the Seoulite who calculate things (even relationships) and is the one who got ambition and all.. Like Dushik said, people doesn't change easily.. And I think the visit from Hyejin's friends made her shaken a bit. Plus she is emotionally exhausted after helping Bora's Mom delivery. Yet, I agree that how multidimensional feeling of Hyejin in the dynamics of "loving yet trusting issues" in this episode was not performed well.

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"My Spidey senses foresee separation and timeslip of a year (she’ll be back when the alcohol he made for her is ready)."
Nooo pleaaaseee......

Anything but time slip! Up till now, the drama is consistent to glued in to each characters and mature relationship theme. A time slip doesn't make sense at all ! Oh please drama goddess...

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I was proud of HJ for agreeing to wait. I wish he had just told her that though. It is very clear that HJ's love language is words of affirmation, so DS showing and not saying doesn't do anything for HJ. At the same time DS's love language is action, so they hit a crossroads. DS was not required to tell HJ his story but she needed to hear that he would tell her eventually, it is why she listened when told that not everyone can open up. DS knows HJ needs words, it is ironically why he bottled up when she asks him about that time period because he probably felt that if he said one thing it wouldn't be enough. I'm glad it I'd resolved, I also hope the angst lasts one episode, I don't have the patience for more honestly. The writer should have started this 2 episodes ago, meh.

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Funny you mentioned love language - when I felt like HJ was pestering DS, it had occurred that their love languages are just different. I share DS's love language. And while I feel that words of affirmation are sort of hollow for me and I am not too into physical touch, I make a conscious decision to express my feelings in those ways too since they're important to many people around me.

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What on earth could have happened for the security guard to be paralyzed and the hyung to die, while Doo-shik is blamed for both tragedies? Since he has a tendency to blame himself unreasonably for others' deaths, the drama is letting us know it wasn't really his fault. That's a lot to clear up in a couple of conversations. And it would be an even bigger stretch to go from Doo-shik getting punched at the party to Doo-shik getting married. I'm sure he worries Hye-jin will also die if she stays with him.

I for one am glad Hwa-Jung reconciled with Young-guk. All their bickering was evidence of bitterness. Now that Young-guk has come to understand his fault and his loss and has committed to change, why shouldn't they try again? Love is more than a feeling; it's the way you act toward someone. Hwa-Jung has been showing her love secretly all along. Now Young-guk has started to show his too.

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Love your point about Hwa Jung and Yiung Guk reconcilation👍

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Regarding the security guard - there were 2 packs of whatever those packages were. I wonder what happened with the other package. As far as his hyung's death - would not be surprised if that was not some strange, freak accident. Even more so if his hyung died while trying to shield Doo-sik.

I would be OK if Ms. Dentist and Doo-sik don't actually get married at the end. It would be sufficient for them remain (or re-establish) a good relationship with each other. ... I couch this because I am fairly certain that there will be some sort of separation with them. I think that Doo-sik could benefit from more intensive therapy sessions than the stray one or 2 sessions we have seen in earlier episodes.

Yep, Hwa-Jung and Young-Guk needed to at least get rid of all that toxic animosity towards each other. I agree with many of the other posters that what they had in the beginning perhaps was not love. If they do happen to get back together, they will be experiencing mutual love for the 1st time. And I would not at all be surprised if that was not the wish that their little boy made with his friend on that stormy night. It would be good to see him become more fun loving and child-like after his parents stopped sniping and snarling at each other all the time.

I think that Cho-Hee will probably move on in the end. I can't see her hanging around since she knows Hwa-Jung never did and never will return her affections in the way that she would like. Cho-Hee is too nice to have to go through life alone.

Very interested to see how Doo-Sik's 6th Bucket List item, "Be happy with Ms. Dentist for a long time" turns out. Meaningful how he struck out the original wish, which was to make her happy. No one can make another person happy - or feel any other emotion, for that matter. Each person is responsible for their own emotions.

My bet is that Gam-Ri won the lottery, but has chosen to live modestly for all these years.

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If Gam-ri did win, then maybe, since her family is so unloving, she will give the money to the town for something that would benefit everyone. And put Doo-shik in charge.

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Okay, our OTP is getting couples therapy. Instead of consulting a professional, they are given sound advice from people who know and love them both. Very glad to see Hye-jin reject the outlook of her shallow, superficial "friends" from Seoul in favor of a warmer more compassionate approach to Doo-shik's walled heart.
Regarding a professorship, my advice is RUN AWAY! Better to jump into the ocean than into the pool of sharks that is higher education (see Sayre's Law). Sandra Oh's "The Chair" exposed several aspects of the toxicity of university teaching. Maybe a happy compromise is a visiting professorship where she can keep her practice and only teach a couple days per week. Yeeesh, strike that thought - just don't do it!
Completely trusting the writer/PD, cast and crew to bring this lovely show (with big, truthful emotions) to a satisfying close.

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The late U.S. Senator Phil Gramm, who had previously been a full professor of Economics was once asked why he ran for public office. He said it was because academic politics was too hard.

The visiting Professor idea might work though, but even so I think that she should indeed run away very fast, just as you said.

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We’ve had so much fluffy happiness that i was ready not ready for how heavy 14 was, meaning i expected conflict but not for it to hit us like a truck (of doom). Really hope the finale week will be enough for the writer to unpack everything and still give us loads of happy times. Anyway, I liked how the reveal to Do Ha’s connection was made, i‘ve always wondered why he had many scenes with Du Sik - they weren’t kidding about the small world in Gongjin.

Mi Seon was hilarious in the spying scene, subtle she is most definitely Not! Also kinda surprised at how fast she went from being scared of commitments to a “let’s go on with marriage as the end game” relationship.

My wish for the end is to have more of Hye Jin-Dusik-Sung Hyun, Mi Seon-Eun Chul and Ijun-Bora banter 🙏

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It was so cruel - I was enjoying those Do Ha and Doo-shik moments a lot and didn't suspect anything more than it just showing how Doo-shik has a way of mesmerizing newcomers.....until, like you said, the conflict hit us like a truck of doom. :(

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Did they explain why Eun Chul had to sell his perfectly legal
fake gun in the sneaky way? I don’t remember.

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Nope! Prolly just a drama thing to create tension.

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Thanks!

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Aww..lottery winner is not eun. Could it be the other dense brother (joke not in an offensive manner) who had misplaced or forgotten his ticket. Funny if it is him.
I like ji won n sh together the way they talk to each other, drawing them closer like what she says "why remove my "shield" without permission" creative n that suits sh.
Mi sun n eun talk about seeing each other for the intention of marriage is at the right time n place n both ready to talk n listen. The spy scene was funny, it shows mi sun care for eun n eun understand that he need not get things for her to show he likes her.
When dushik calls hyejin n want to talk, she does not. And when they are working with all the villagers, she wants him to talk - what about her fear of gossip n that place is not the right place n time. It was good that hwa met hyejin n enlighten her. Mi sun has enlightened her over her comments on juri dad n juri had enlightened her on her father marriage n dushik had enlighten her in many ways. It was good that she asked dushik about their future n dushik did not hesistate n told her his future is with her. That should be the way, not dragging mud with water with words like you are drifting away (which i don't see it). Actually, the psychologist had said dushik is getting better n given time n acceptance dushik would likely open up. For people who go through pain, to talk about it, the person will experience the pain all over again n may fall deeper into depression. The person can only talk about it when the person is ready n can handle himself/herself (sometime may not be the case) Dushik is worried that he will disappoint hyejin n that he is not worthy if her - that's also the reason n he finally puck up his courage to want to talk about it. Sh us a great buddy to dushik n he is the one who will help dushik this time (ep 15 preview). Jung woo treating dushik like his own brother is so touching (though its cameo but the chemistry is so good n they had acted together in play).

Hope healing can happen for dushik when sun ah and do ha father met him.
From the preview of ep 15, dushik (he uses to buy extra milk to give to do ha father) tells do ha father not to worry, like he is going to help him n his hyung came along to help. Then bad things happen n dushik almost commit suside but someone save him, i guess is do ha father but as a result do ha father became paralise.
Like @miss h said, a year apart for hyejin to be at seoul teaching n dushik at gongin. And hyejin return to gingin, much wiser n dushik much happier to share the liquor.
I think dushik do plan for his future in a way that is comfortable for him.
Seon Ho acting is so good that can't help it but feel the pain he felt.

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Wow, that's a great theory about the ticket!

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Thanks...i was trying ti see the lighter side of the drama cos yoon put up the banner on this mystery. My original theory was chun jae, his cafe not like crowded n he is very relax n panic when juri stole his safe. Just for fun to analyze.

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This was hard to watch. I did find myself more on Doo-shik's side than Hye-jin's but then I guess we have the benefit of knowing more.

Some eagle-eyed Redditor noticed that starting with Episode 13, the 'suicide' tag had been added to the show on Netflix. So I guess this is going to get even more difficult to watch before it gets better. Sigh.

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You can also see in the preview what is about...

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This was one of the best eps for me as we finally got information on Doo-shik's past!

And a big round of applause for Kim Seon Ho's acting, being able to make the viewers see and feel the different emotional states Doo-shik went through. 🥺

The wait for the last 2 eps is the longest in this drama!!!

And the finale will probably be a cry fest, before wrapping up with a hopefully.. happy ending. 🤞

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Oh forgot to comment on that pink dress...

Why did Hye-Jin change into a pink "dress" with a style that will surely get creases if she was clearly changing into something else to "sleep" over at Du-sik's house?!?!? 😒

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I can't get enough of smiling Chief Hong. Bring back the dimples please, Show!

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i am loving this! i love the leads acting and dimples!

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I enjoy reading your comments here, they express diversity and objectiveness so I hope it's a safe place to share critics. I've told this before but I think there are serious issues with the storytelling in this drama although I enjoy watching easy going, summer vibes in overall.

The ML has been kept as a plot twist until the very end, at this point he is a cliffhanger more than a character and I think it is too late for this to be concluded but people would probably show sympathy for him anyway so it doesn't matter for at all (which bothers me a lot). I can't even understand how the FL started dating him without knowing that major life changing factor in the ML's story, I'm sorry to say that I needed to skip most of those ''fluffy" cringy parts in the earlier episodes because they only felt like a montage with beautiful people nothing more since there is a lack of emotional context. As for the ML's he is so unrealistic from the beginning, it feels like a fairytale for him with all the references to Cinderella and all (just like that shoe scene). He is living in an isolated place, he happens to get a very understanding GF (she doesn't even pressure about learning his past), surrounded people full of a town, he has a supportive grandma and a great BFF, whom mentoring and comforting him even after he acts quite childish but here, he still tries to fix other people and live on a moral high hoarse now and then. I can't even stress enough how they've romanticized the idea of working for part time jobs so far instead of dealing with the issues of losing his dream or motivation. I think that was quite problematic. Speaking of the FL she has good ethics, great friend and not shallow to prioritize money over her morals but she is still too obsessed with social status, I would expect her to overcome this until now. At this point I can't get connected with neither the ML or the FL at all. I just wonder how they're going to conclude this story but can't help but think that it's been quite underwhelming, might have been told so much better and it is nothing to do with ''healing'' since there is no healing until now.

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The story itself never tried to be anything but a montage of cliches. They even gave the FML the Disney Princess treatment (ailing then dead mother, a stepmom and distant misunderstood father). The writer clearly fed into the ml trauma trope and the story has benefited from that (especially since the actor is still riding the wave of his last traumatic ml role in StartUp). Except I dont think the story was paced properly to handle this theme. I don't think this show planned on giving a healthy portrayal on "healing". We are given a ML who has an outstanding support system and is in therapy, yet makes no progress in addressing his past trauma until the FML comes into his life. This was just a drawn out way of writing the "her love cures him" trope.
Thank you for pointing out the romanticization of part time jobs. As someone who grew up in a small town I questioned this from the beginning. How was he able to afford his well appointed home? How is he able to sustain such an expensive hobby (collecting vintage cameras). But this show has romanticized small town living as a whole. The writer has used this as a tool to "convince" the audience that the FL's attachment to city life is wrong and to justify her choosing the small town in the end. Except as you pointed out, with only two episodes left to go, the conclusion is just going to be underwhelming. She is going to suddenly lose all sense of professional ambition and reject her long term goals, choosing to settle in the small town. He's going to suddenly be cured because he's in love and that's how male trauma works in these romantic stories.

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I agree with all the points and I think most people would be quite critical towards this storytelling if we had different leads. After watching ep 15, I can tell that it is too underwhelming overall. I honestly can't see any real connection between the ML and outsiders including the FL, PD Ji etc. Their roles are so on sided at this point and it is all about comforting him. PD Ji might be an angel and the FL is like attracting to heal his wounds (just like Disney stories as you mentioned) I know that there are many other dramas like that - specially the old ones but it can still be delivered better.

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Ugh that ending. Was not expecting it.I'm scared to watch the next episode. Whatever happened - 1 lost his life, 1 lost his ability to move, a woman lost her husband, and a baby lost his dad. Like wtf could have happened?! And Doo-shik was so involved that Do-ha recognized the name.

I had been wondering why Hwa-jung could love a numbskull like Young-guk, but after seeing the scene of him taking care of her mother - I get it. It's hard not to do that. I'm not sure if Young-guk loves Hwa-jung the same way, but he does care about her a lot more than I expected. I'm weirdly happy they're going to give themselves a second chance.

Mi-sun suspecting Eun-chul of being into shady dealings was hilarious. The actor who plays Eun-chul played the small town stalker/creep in the drama, DDSSLLS .

Sung-hyun and Ji-won are cute together! Especially when they both wear glasses.

I'm glad Hye-jin asked for a break and specified it wasn't a break up. After the "break" debacle with Ross and Rachel in Friends....And I'm glad even though Hye-jin was rash at first, she did reflect and step back. I did almost choke when she announced that patience isn't her strong suit and how she makes quick decisions and hate ambiguity since she so readily identified her weak points. Things she can't fix, but can try to temper.

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I liked how Hwa-jung and Young-guk got back together but felt more than a little short-changed by our rotisserie couple: Instead of getting to watch Mi-seon struggling to find her new path and coming to a gradual realization about what she wanted her future to look like she is just suddenly there: She and Eun-chal are now dating with the intent of marriage (and they will have two kids). I almost got whiplash at the sudden turn of events. I hate that we skipped a lot of really necessary steps in Mi-seon’s growth. It was still cute though: Although she is the one who raises the subject of marriage she gets to hear that this is what he intended all along. What I do like is that she accepts Eun-chul for what he is- Not bright but very good and dependable. She knows that she will have to be the brains in this family but that suits her just fine- and it doesn’t hurt that he is undoubtedly the most handsome man she has ever dated.

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When Hyejin said 멀어져 I don't think she meant that Dushik was drifting away from her literally. It's more that she felt that she can't reach him, emotionally. He kept his emotions and vulnerabilities too far away from her so she's unable to reach, understand and comfort him. That can be frustrating for someone who puts their all into a relationship.

When 2 people are in a relationship, a 'bridge' is established. While Hyejin's side of the bridge is fully open and welcoming for anyone she trusts to come and go, Dushik's side of the bridge is heavily guarded that not even Hyejin is able to penetrate in (for now). So I can completely understand Hyejin's initial thoughts. Although, I am glad to see that despite her own perspective & impatient personality, she realized how unfair it would be to push Dushik who is clearly having a hard time and not ready to share his past and so she was able to meet him halfway on the bridge and wait. I like that development.

I think some people fail to see that when you're in a relationship, it's natural for you to want to know everything about your other half. Especially for someone like Hyejin who has her own emotional baggage but was able to have an emotional pillar of support in the form Dushik. She wanted to do the same for him too but was unable to and so she was disappointed that he wouldn't let her. As viewers, we know the depth of Dushik's trauma and we could fully understand his reluctance to share whereas for Hyejin, she's completely in the dark. She does not know how dark and deep his past was and so her act of wanting to know about his past made some of us, the viewers, feel like she's being pushy and inconsiderate when it's actually just us being protective of Dushik because we know how deeply hurt he was.

In some kdramas, there would definitely be emotional bribery and an ultimatum would've been given (to tell or to break up). But I'm glad that this show is being realistic and mature with how they are handling this arc. It is also very realistic how Dushik's trauma and mental health is being portrayed. Some people might think that they are dragging Dushik's trauma. But trauma doesn't just go away when you're in love. & you just don't easily share your traumas just because you're in love either.

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"trauma doesn't just go away when you're in love"
so true...

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So, with 2 episodes left, will we be able to find out who the lottery winner is? Du-shik is out, so is Eun-chul. Could it be one of the grandmas or Chun-jae? How else can his cafe survive ? I am still partial to Eun-chul though as it would have been a great twist. Maybe he spent all his money on collectibles?

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I’m very disappointed as well that the June-JuRi thread wasn’t developed. It could have been very entertaining.

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IMO, this episode brought a lot of deep and rich dialogues, that as I wrote elsewhere, as a thoughtful and considerate episode.

The moment when Dushik said “bianhae” (the very first scene), I find myself disappointed to Dushik. I can feel what Hyejin felt. Like what Choihui said, "sorry" is not a word a girl would wait to hear from her love at that point. Kim Seonho did a good job.

To appreciate, I love the sisterhood shown in this episode the most. Unrequitted yet pure love from Choihui, support Hwajeong to Hyejin, and Namsook to Hwajeong. How wonderful they are. When you got somebody rooting on your relationship with positive and mature manner, honestly, you might be more fortunate than a person winning a lottery.

Aside from problem of translations (especially in the scene where Hyejin deliver Mom’s banchan to Dushik and declared she would waiting for him), IMO, Minah did not deliver Hyejin’s complicated feelings. Or better to say, her feeling potrayed wasn't well match to consistent love that Dushik had shown. In the case of Dushik, although he hurts, we can still feel the love he got to Hyejin through his eyes… All the way from the very first scene to the last. Even when Dushik started his old habit of restraining himself (on that Banchan scene), or when he silently went to Hyejin’s house that night (another scene that has so much potentials yet somehow off - because of editing?).

Nevertheless, I still appreciate this episode. IMO, it best portrayed good bridge from honeymoon phase of the main lead to their missery, without going to far from the main plot, and yet still considerate to the whole Shikye nation who would be grieving if the episode was a stormy tear-jerker....

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It's funny, reading the coments, how much I feel like the only one to be frustrated by DS and mostly on HJ side. I understand he has trauma, and a big one at that, so not expecting him to talk about it easily. However, I would have loved for him to be the one to say he's gonna tell her one day, even if it's not right away. He doesn't speak a word at all and she do all the work in communication... maybe it's because I feel close to HJ and her fears and way of communicating ?

Either way, I feel like episode 15 is going to frustrate me even more ! But here for it.

So glad we have Ms Pyo to give us the fluff to heal our heart a little bit.

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You aren't alone at all. I can't tell that I like the FL so much as well but his character is too victimized, he is basically a Mary Sue/Gary Stu.

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Not related to the show but got a question on one of the actors - read something about ksh in soompi. Does anyone know exactly what happened?

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