Yumi’s Cells 2: Episodes 5-6
When our heroine meets a certain ex from her past, she’s forced to come to terms with her feelings. At the same time, her relationship with her new (perfect) boyfriend deepens, and we start to learn more about his personality and character. *Cue the swoons*
EPISODES 5-6 WEECAP
I’ve been in a constant state of swoon since last week’s episodes, lost in the flood of Bobby’s wonderfulness. As is Yumi. Which is why the sudden serendipitous reappearance of Woong seems weirdly cruel and/or artificial. Luckily, instead of creating a melodramatic mess, this little vignette gives Yumi the closure she never got after their awful breakup, and enables her to return to Bobby with a full heart for him. I’m down for this.
That being said, we linger with Woong for a lot longer than I expected we would — and frankly, longer than I think we needed to. I don’t know about you, but I have completely moved on from Woong and his frustrating algorithms and pride cell; I’m lost in Bobby land.
Interestingly, the narrative switches to Woong for much of Episode 5. We see the events leading up to their breakup from his perspective, and we see his unhappiness after – and even the story behind his need for the cheap rice cooker. Woong learns that his pride is what caused their relationship to crumble and kept them from truly being close and sharing their burdens. So, even though Woong’s love cell cuts the pride cell off, the damage is already done.
As I mentioned, I’m even more over Woong than Yumi is, but there was something about how Woong’s story was handled that made it impossible not to feel for him. When we see him replaying the important moments from their past and how he would go back and change them (or even how he wished the rice cooker exchange went down) — it’s truly sad.
Yumi seems to have some lingering feelings for him, and for a moment we’re left to wonder how far she’ll go to act on them. She’s supposed to be celebrating Christmas Eve with Bobby, for goodness sake, and he’s making pizza and opening some red wine (why so perfect, Bobby?). Still, she steps out for the second time that night, and goes to meet Woong as requested.
The clincher is kind of two-fold here. First, that Bobby has intuited who is messaging her and who she’s going to meet, and he willingly lets her go, knowing that trusting her is the best path to take. Second, that Yumi uses this encounter with Woong to get the closure she needed and to fully move on from him. Even Woong’s algorithm correctly confirms that she doesn’t have any lingering romantic feelings for him.
While it’s sad, I’m also kind of glad? I was worried we might have too much conflict going on here, so I’m happy that Yumi got what she needed — and that it turned out to strengthen her relationship with Bobby even more. When she returns to his apartment and he greets her with a huge smile and pulls her inside, I about died.
After the Woong vignette is over, we turn to Yumi’s new life as a struggling writer sans salary, and the course of her day is described through this great metaphor of an ever-shifting five star rating system. During the day, stars are either added or subtracted — meeting Bobby and getting loved by him will add stars to her counter, while meeting an old classmate (yay Park Jin-joo cameo!) makes her question her decision to leave her job, and stars quickly disappear.
Like most of the layers of metaphor this show uses — whether through the cells’ squabbling, how her village operates, or even the star ratings — they work because they illustrate so well something that we all feel each day. The ups and downs of daily life, that we often feel automatically, are brought to life through this awesome and imaginative writing.
Maybe that’s why it’s extra fun to see Yumi hunkered down working on her novel (granted, any story about a woman working doggedly on her future novel automatically delights me). Yumi writes an impressive 2,000 words each morning, attends writing seminars, reads in bookstores — I have no clue how she’s supporting herself at this point and wish she spent less money on fancy PPL coffees, but it’s also really nice to see her committed to her dream.
And the support from Bobby comes in spades. He checks the results of a new writer’s competition almost as frantically as she does – and then knows just when to show up when she needs comforting. And boy does Bobby know how to comfort a woman — tasty food, his warm presence, encouraging words, oh, and delicious kisses.
We finally learn a bit more about Bobby and his life, family, and cell village when Yumi’s parents turn up in Seoul unexpectedly and land on her doorstep when our couple is mid-makeout. This, of course, cues some hilarious interactions between Yumi’s parents and Bobby. They both seem to sense he’s a good seed — her mother sensing his good upbringing and character, and his father being as protective and competitive as we might expect, but eventually caving in because Bobby is just that amazing.
But thanks to the millions of questions Yumi’s mom asks, her guesses about his family life, and an overheard phone conversation, Yumi starts to suspect that Bobby isn’t who he claims to be. He’s not a regular guy working for a living: he’s a runaway chaebol heir.
The level of parody here is golden — I was literally rolling when the token melodrama music kicked in, and we get our favorite melo tropes reenacted, from the glass of water in the face, the infamous envelope of money to lure the heroine away from said heir.
Bobby is able to sense Yumi’s discomfiture, and finds a circuitous but adorable way to tell her the truth. He goes all the way to his family’s tteokbokki place and brings takeout back to Yumi’s apartment. He then points out that their fathers both named their family business after their children. It’s adorable, and Yumi is relieved to death that he’s not chaebol lol.
As much as I can enjoy Yumi and Bobby together all day, I admit I’m a little nervous that he’s too good to be true. Surely some conflict is coming, especially since Yumi’s Cells has always been a wonderfully realistic show that showcases everyday struggles and misunderstandings.
While I enjoyed the chaebol jokes to the max — just as much as I enjoyed Bobby with a piglet (dead!) and their morning-after snuggles (also dead!) — I’m ready to see this couple grow together as they face some waves. But make them very small waves, okay, Show? This couple and their likemindedness is a delight to watch, and I don’t want to give it up anytime soon. As in ever.