04 May 2014

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Witch's Romance - Episode 4 (A SqueeCap)

Posted by JoAnne on May 04, 2014
It is official: this is my crack drama for the Spring. Ji Yeon and Dong Ha are both beginning to realize that the attraction they feel for each other doesn't require a drunken evening at a pongmacha and as they learn more about each other, their respect deepens too. I keep praying they'll actually just give in and go to bed with each other, but we know that won't happen for a long time. Oh well. At least we get more of Cutie Soo, and how can that EVER be a bad thing?
kakashi: What an endearing episode! And the crackling! It's become so loud I'll soon need ear muffs! It's not only the panties that are on fire, it's also the chemistry on the screen. That said, I'm experiencing some kind of "commenting fail". What else can I say than "look how cuuuuuuute puppy is" and "omg, omg, he is so cuuuute, and sweeeet, and sexy"?!
Episode 4

At the hospital, a truly worried Dong Ha breathes a deep sigh of relief when Ji Yeon wakes and recognizes him. I told you to stay home, he says. You didn't tell me if you were coming or going, you didn't answer your phone. How can a person be like that? You make me want to... he pauses, resignation or realization dawning on his face, ...care for you. Squee. MAJOR SQUEE.
kakashi: Squeeeeeeee! Still, I fear for his tender great heart. He will not be hurt, will he?! Please make sure of it, JoAnne.
Ji Yeon is only awake long enough to realize that she's in the hospital and learn that she has a slight concussion. She falls back to sleep and it takes a nurse to reassure Dong Ha that everything is really ok and that he needs to take care of his own wounds, too, after inspecting a nasty gash on his forearm.
kakashi: Like a true hero. Knows no pain - at least not his own.
The Stooges arrive. They're loud and irritating (I'm going to start fastforwarding their scenes) and make a huge fuss around Ji Yeon's bed only to find that she's not in it - it's the shaman from last week. She'd been hit in the head by an exploding light bulb - which she blames on Masters of Part-Time - and now she's bed hopping because her assigned spot has bad energy. I assume her continued appearance will mean something later but right now it just seems awkwardly tacked on to the story.
kakashi: Sigh. I like your optimism.
Long story short, Ji Yeon isn't in her bed because she's snuck out of the hospital. Dong Ha finds her in the destroyed apartment, kneeling on the ground and looking ate that polar bear picture. He starts to scold but stops when he realizes that she's crying.
kakashi: Touching, but can the polar bear just GO?!
His eye is caught by the jacket he ripped off Ji Yeon's assailant - a pocket holds a business card which he quickly confiscates (how conveniently dumb of Mr. Assailant). He turns back to Ji Yeon and carefully helps her to stand. It's clear that he's deeply affected by her vulnerability and pain and he treats her with such gentleness and care that I can't help loving him even more. This is ridiculous, honestly. Are they going to give him ANY flaws?
kakashi: Probably not. But I'm starting to wonder what the angst-episodes will be about. You've seen My Queen, you probably know. I don't. Well, they certainly have issues enough between them, but something that is definitely NOT an issue is his character. Noble idiocy however ... he feels like VERY capable of that.
She cut her hand picking up the picture, and Dong Ha performs a little first aid as they catch each other up - how he was able to find her, where she went, and the worried look in his eyes deepens as she says that Kim Jeong Do's threats just make her more determined to take this to the end.
kakashi: Yeah and I think: why the heck would she go and see this monster alone? I honor a good journalist, but a bit more security-awareness wouldn't hurt! 
After cleaning himself up a bit (I guess he didn't get the stitches after all? yeah, why?) Dong Ha plans to take Ji Yeon back to the hospital for her CT Scan, but by the time he's done she's asleep on his couch. Dong Ha covers Ji Yeon carefully (oh, so tender ...) and then sits on the coffee table so he can watch her for a bit - TELL me this guy isn't completely smitten already, just try. He notices that she's clutching the polar bear picture, and when he takes it from her he sees the marriage proposal on the back. He remembers back to the night they kissed, when she asked if he would blame the woman left at the altar. He realizes now that she might have been talking about her own past, and he looks at her with compassion.
kakashi: I thought he had realized that before ... at the shaman's for example. But it doesn't really matter anyway. I like that there's blood on the bear-pictures and I imagine it being ripped up and thrown into a fire next.
Ji Yeon wakes the next morning to an empty apartment, a breakfast tray, and a note from Dong Ha that says he will return immediately, so do NOT go anywhere. Meanwhile, Dong Ha is meeting with Kim Jeong Do's manager. He is completely disgusting, denies everything, even goes so far as to say that Ji Yeon is making everything up, from the affair right through to the attack on her own person. Dong Ha responds with a controlled rage that is ...ummm... pretty hot. You GO, Puppy.
kakashi: These people are truly disgusting. I hope they get what's coming for them. If not here and now, then in the afterlife. 
Of course Ji Yeon isn't home when he gets back - she's next door, with Fishcake Friend. Puppy arrives just as Fish is trying to convince Ji Yeon that she needs to come stay with them; Ji Yeon is insisting just as adamantly that she will stay with a 'hoobae' and when Fish realizes that PUPPY is the hoobae, well... let's just say she's enthusiastic about it, and leaves quickly with no concerns. Ji Yeon didn't really mean it, of course, and plans to stay in a hotel, but Puppy nips that in the bud pretty quickly, and back at his apartment they grow a little closer as Ji Yeon shares a bit of her past with a sympathetic Dong Ha.
kakashi: Lol, uri Dong-ha ... just bringing that woman into his friends apartment, without even asking him? That's pretty daring, I'd say! He is lucky Cutie Soo is a bit of a ... well, softie. Other friends might just have told him to pack and leave.
At the office. Stooges, ignored. Not by me, by Ji Yeon (and by me). Intern Girl pops up with an arrangement of tulips and possibly parsley and says it's good for calming nerves. Ji Yeon is rude, Puppy saves the day - and then very pointedly glares at Ji Yeon, who appears to be verrrrrrrry aware of any interaction between Puppy and Intern.
kakashi: And he is VERY aware of her being very aware of his interactions with the Intern.
Ji Yeon, Dong Ha, and Young Shik are all up to speed and agreed on the next course of action; they need proof of Kim Jeong Do's nefarious deeds before an event he is holding in the next few days - some charity slash book launch kind of thing. It seems likely that's where he'll announce his run for office, and they want to put an end to those plans. Papa Stooge, who really is an obnoxious twat, makes a bet with Ji Yeon - if she exposes proof re: Kim Jeong Do, he will wear Superman panties to work. And if she DOESN'T, then Ji Yeon has to come to work in a girl group outfit. Puppy takes this opportunity to teasingly whisper in her ear about the practicing to music she does every night. Puppy, please, just kiss her now.
kakashi: Ohhhhh, his smile ... it's adorable! 
Cut to people making out passionately in a dark room. MY WISH HAS COME TRUE! Puppy and Ji Yeon are going for it, on behalf of all noonas everywhere! (I think happily of that scene at the end of My Queen and anticipate good things from my OTP here.)
kakashi: Are you going to make me watch My Queen?! 
No... but it's still not bad news. Cutie Soo has a lady friend over at the townhouse and they are going at it, is all I can say. The girl is trying to rip his shirt off and pushes him backwards onto the bed, but midway he either trips over something or lands on it. Cutie's game to keep going but lady friend flips on the light - and they both see an opened suit case full of nice lingerie. It's Ji Yeon's, but neither of them know that. The girl breaks up with Cutie despite his claim of innocence.
kakashi: Hahahaha, Cutie Soo! Man, you rock this role. I just hope Aoki doesn't see you! He'll go ballistic! 
Cutie calls Puppy. Turns out he's happy about the situation, but more to the point, he starts grilling Dong Ha about HIS paramour. I still can't get over this goober version of Cutie/Aoki, really I can't. He's playing around with the bra and praising the figure this woman must have and Dong Ha's reluctance to say that it's Ji Yeon is pretty funny, too, but he does 'fess up, and Cutie Soo has a fit. He's still having nightmares about moldy spinach!
kakashi: That scene had me in stitches. Yoon Hyun-min? How are you so AWESOME?!
Our awesome Bring Kim Jeung Do Down team is watching a television interview with disgust all over their faces. Jeung Do has gotten his wife to appear as well and it's just sickening how they fake it for the audience. Cutie Soo breezes in, but when he realizes that Ji Yeon is there he immediately shrinks into himself and gets very quiet and says he's just there to get underwear (this guy! It's his apartment! But he is so afraid, he'd rather move out, buahahaha). He HOPS across the room in his eagerness to leave but Dong Ha stops him to confirm that a particular hotel belongs to Cutie's father. If looks could kill, our puppy would certainly be dead.
kakashi: Poor Cutie ... castrated by fear of the Witch. 
The answer is yes, of course, and thus does 'Shigumchi' get roped into the Scooby Gang! And more time on screen... \(*0*)/ + \(*0*)/ And how do they plan to end the political aspirations of our resident dirtbag? Well! Cutie helps to sneakily collect a DNA sample from Kim Jeong Do on a movie set and, as son of the hotel, obtains an invite for the event itself.
Their remaining plans are almost thwarted when they learn by accident that the 'other woman' is leaving the country that very night, but Cutie to the rescue again as the driver hired to take them to the airport - which he doesn't do, of course, instead bringing them to some random parking lot to meet with Ji Yeon and Dong Ha. Ji Yeon makes an impassioned speech and asks for one day to prove herself, offering a ticket out the next night to replace the one for today. Mean while , Dong Ha gives the little girl a gift and collects her empty juice pouch - more DNA!
kakashi: That was a bit underhanded though. And anway ... you can't just DNA-test somebody without their knowledge and consent and then use it as evidence. But I'm sure our Scooby Gang knows that.
About that DNA... back at the townhouse, Young Shik wants to know how they will do the test and Cutie helpfully points out that Dong Ha can just do it in his lab, because, you know, he went to medical school. No biggie. Puppy shrugs modestly but grins with an 'oh well, what can you do, I'm just that awesome' look on his face.
kakashi: Oh dear, those two boys are SO CUTE, thanks so much for the fanservice, drama!
Cutie Soo has completely gotten over his fear of Ji Yeon (even calling her noonim), and he's in charge of dressing her and Dong Ha for the night's event. At a fancy dress shop, the three of them are staring at something off camera - Cutie is pleased, Ji Yeon is taken aback, and Dong Ha is grinning. We soon see why - the shop assistants do that thing where they pull back the curtains, and we're treated to a very lovely and curvaceous Ji Yeon in a stunning, strapless red dress. It hugs her body just so and the simplicity of it allows her figure to show perfectly. Both men look at her like she's the next best thing to naked, which she probably is - Dong Ha is as proud as if she were his girl. Make it happen, Puppy. SOON.
kakashi: Oh. Yes. Look at the boys staring ... this woman has it and she wants to give it so go take it.
Puppy cleans up nicely, too, in head-to-toe black, but he's wearing one of those 'modern cut' suits which just look too small to me, and it emphasizes how slender he is (and tall!) and how boyishly he moves. Plus, it makes his feet look enormous. So he's cute, but LESS manly. Ji Yeon doesn't appear to have any complaints.
kakashi: How old is this dude? Do I need to google?! 
Now at the venue, Dong Ha and Ji Yeon are introduced as the night's entertainment. Apparently Dong Ha is also a magician (with cheesy moves, so cute! that's totally how they do it!) Kim Jeong Do's manager recognizes him immediately and shares the news with Kim, who doesn't seem nearly as panicked as the manager does. Dong Ha makes a clever speech about the similarities between magicians and actors - they both create an illusion in order to be loved, and if the illusion is broken, well... he ends by saying he's grateful they don't know his secrets. Jeong Do starts to pay more attention right about now...
When Ji Yeon walks out on stage and waves to Kim Jeong Do - right before Dong Ha makes her 'disappear' - the sleeze looks like he might throw up. When Dong Ha calls him up on stage to help with the reveal there's no graceful way to refuse (well, there would have been - but I guess he is the kind of person that would go along, because he thinks he is in power), so Jeong Do helps Dong Ha lift the curtain, and I'm not sure what he was expecting, but the relief on his face when Ji Yeon is simply not there is quite funny. Especially since we know he's not out of the woods by a long shot.
And now... it's his turn to get into the box. It's hard to explain the look in Dong Ha's eyes, but Jeong Do can tell there's no point in protesting. The actor folds himself into the magician's box, far less gracefully than Ji Yeon. Dong Ha calls Kim's wife up on stage for the reveal, this time. Of course he's gone, and the manager orders a flunky to find their boss right away.
Jeong Do's immense douchiness is on full display in a private room backstage as he denies to Ji Yeon that he is the father of little Yoon Ji, is caught by her mother, tries to smooth things over, is caught by his wife, tries to smooth things over THERE, and is threatened first that he must retire from public life or else, and then that if 'or else' ever happens, he'll die.
kakashi: Bravo. Well played, Scooby Gang!

Dong Ha advises Jeong Do to return to the stage; after all, he's the main event tonight. Sunbae and hoobae take a moment for a private word, since Soo Jeong still plans to leave the country. She is proud of Ji Yeon, who seems truly free of Shi Hoon. (Meaningful glance at Puppy.) Sunbae approves! For the second time, Ji Yeon denies the truth that is apparent to everyone else: she and Puppy belong together. Third, if you count the time she kicked the puppy out of bed! Even back then he knew age didn't matter...
kakashi: Yeah. Well. I could matter, but not with this guy, who is truly mature for his age. I know 25 year olds that actually belong in kindergarten, but that's another story for another time. 
Back on stage, Jeong Do makes an announcement that he'd recently learned he had a serious health condition and will need to retire completely from public life. Meanwhile, his lover and child are out front saying goodbye to Ji Yeon, who has been declared 'a nice person' by the little girl. Dong Ha smiles proudly, and after the little family drives off he asks Ji Yeon for her hand, then produces a magic rose. (And looks scrumptious doing it, I might add.)
kakashi: Suuuuuuuuure, an actor would just have his event, and then, towards the end of it, he would suddenly announce that he is retiring. Suuuuuuuuuuure.
They compliment each other on a job well done and he suggests that everyone go out for a celebratory drink - but just as she eagerly gives her acceptance, he 'remembers' that she has quit drinking because of 'certain habits.' He laughs at her immediately angry retort and heads over to the car, but stops when Ji Yeon gets a call.
kakashi: awwww, Puppy. I think he wouldn't mind her drinking and then getting on with "certain habits".
It's her mother, returning from Jeju - where she apparently spent part of every evening leaving long messages on Ji Yeon's answering machine. Messages Ji Yeon did not listen to. One of which told Ji Yeon about a matseon arranged for this evening. Neither Ji Yeon nor Dong Ha are pleased at this news. Dong Ha is insulted to hear that her mother thinks he's nice enough, but too poor, but that's nothing to his discomfort at the thought of her actually going on the date.
kakashi: Oh, and suddenly, there's a promise of cute jealous Puppy on our screen! I approve. 
The two of them can barely look at each other. He can't believe she'd go, she clearly doesn't want to have talk about it with him and protests that she has no choice.... aww, they are both already falling. He gets snippy about her risque dress and the 'fat ahjussi' she'll be meeting, she gets mad and orders him to bring the car, he responds with an adorable bitch face.
kakashi: I get that he would feel insulted by the comment of being "poor" (i.e. not Son-in-law material) and then feel threatened by her accord to go meet other people. He is very mature and also sure of himself, but I guess this is his vulnerability: he has nothing much to give to a woman (there was mention of his father though, what might he be?)

At the restaurant, my happy surprise is Dong Ha's bad news - it's a cameo by Lee Jae Yoon, my beloved Thighs from Cruel City! He's almost unrecognizable with an upswept, reddish do. From a distance he presents a really good image to Dong Ha, who snarks jealously to himself as he drives off.
kakashi: Thighs! Hi! I never liked you, but in this role, you make me laugh!
He's a well-educated homeopathic doctor with nice manners, and the date goes well, by all appearances. Dong Ha, waiting at home, gets more and more irate and antsy as the night drags on, finally bursting out with 'Is that man that great?'
kakashi: Gif-galore ... begin!
In response we hear Ji Yeon. 'Great? Bullshit!' She is at the fishcake restaurant, ranting about the biggest weirdo she's ever come across. Yes, he was good looking. Yes, he was a doctor. Everything was fine! Until he answered his phone. In a flash back, Lee Jae Yoon absolutely destroys his handsome, manly image with the most disturbing display of aegyo imaginable, ending a call to 'Halmeoni' with a threat to go to sleep while touching her boobies. I'm laughing, but I also kind of want to throw up. I don't blame Ji Yeon for getting out of there fast.
kakashi: I will never forget this scene. Never! Oh, Thighs ... you have fully redeemed yourself in my eyes, forever.
When she finally makes it home, she discovers Dong Ha outside with Intern Girl. He was out there simply because he couldn't bear to wait inside the house a minute longer, and Intern came to drop something off at Ji Yeon's request. They bond in a friendly way, but to Ji Yeon's eyes it looks like interest even though Dong Ha grills her fussily about where she's been so late, and what kind of a man is her date, anyway?
kakashi: People in Kdrama are not really good at picking up jealousy-signs, are they? They are often blind to those little (suuuuper obvious) cues. 
She sends the Intern on her way and fusses to herself when Dong Ha walks the girl to the main road. When Dong Ha returns, though (30 seconds later), he can't stop himself from grilling her about the evening. He is SO jealous! Ji Yeon laughs and describes the gramma's boy she ran from. She produces a bottle of wine to celebrate their victory, and she promises she'll have just one. No! Drink the whole bottle! Lick the dregs from the glasses! Jump the puppy! Do it do it doooooo eeeeeeeet.

They sit outside drinking companionably, and when Dong Ha pronounces her awesome for her decision not to publish an article about what she knows she jokes, but it's clear she's pleased. Her turn to praise him, for the magic skills. He explains that he learned it as a way to reach the kids when he did a rotation on a pediatric ward. (Everyone: 1, 2, 3....awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.)
kakashi: Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.
Ji Yeon wants to know why he became a part-timer, and Dong Ha says that he thought doctors saved people, but once someone died in front of him and there was nothing he could do, he learned that wasn't true. Ji Yeon looks at him tenderly and reminds him that he did save her, and tells him that she thinks he'd have made an excellent doctor.
kakashi: Alright, so his girlfriend died. That's sad. We knew/didn't know.  

Dong Ha pulls out his phone and sets it to play music - just like Ji Yeon with his music earlier, he's been familiarizing himself with hers, as well (awwwwwwwwwww). She sings along with Byeon Jin Seob to her favorite song from girlhood, and Dong Ha shushs her because it's the part he likes best, where the man says he doesn't like girls who go on meetings. He side eyes Ji Yeon. No meetings.
It takes her a minute, but she catches on and asks if he's jealous. He feigns innocence. Of course he's not jealous. SHE went on a blind date, but he said he didn't like girls who went on meetings, not blind dates. The best part is both words really do mean date, and he's actually telling her that he IS jealous, but he still gets to maintain plausible deniability. Sigh. I love them.
kakashi: Me too. I actually don't want them together yet. I love the tension before the release. 
She sings along at the end, when a woman chimes in to reply to Jin Seob and say yes, that woman sounds awesome, and she'd sure like to meet the guy who matched her. Dong Ha stares at her with his beautiful brown puppy eyes full of admiration. And not for her singing. She ends with a yawn and he suggests going in now, then proceeds to take off his shoes. Kneeling before her, he places the shoes so that she can put them on. He'd noticed her limping earlier and thought perhaps a long day in heels might be uncomfortable. So perfect, this boy.
kakashi: I about died. And I had tears in my eyes. It was very moving.
Ji Yeon smiles and takes his arm companionably, only to have him cry out in pain. In the apartment, she clucks over the nasty gash. Dong Ha tries to pass it off as something that happened when he was moving in, but she knows better. She apologizes sincerely, but is most touched when he only seems to think of it in terms of her safety and well-being. (Me too!) He smiles at her and asks her earnestly not to jump in so eagerly next time, and then hilariously ruins the tender moment by ending with the admonishment that it's not something she should be doing at her age.
kakashi: Why is he touching his lips all the time!!!!! 
She bristles, but then they both break out laughing - already such a team and so comfortable with each other that these things are details that bind them, not keep them apart. Happy me. As she puts away the first aid kit, she notices a pot with a dead plant in it and picks it up. She starts to pick at it as she asks what it is, and Dong Ha reacts in alarm, grabbing it out of her hands. Okay. I had a hard time with this particular bit of business in My Queen, too, but you can't exactly leave it out. Oh well. They say goodnight, the easy happiness of a few moments ago replaced with awkward silence.
kakashi: That's his flaw then, I think. His attachment to a dead plant. 
The next day, having lost the bet, Ji Yeon appears in costume as promised. It's hideous, but she's rocking it because she has that awesome bod, of course. All eyes are on her, but the stickiest are Dong Ha's. Squee! And then the Intern appears in the same outfit, all young and blushy and fresh, the bitch. She did it so that Ji Yeon wouldn't be embarrassed alone, she says. Right. She even has rice cakes. Skank.
kakashi: Ji-yeon wasn't even embarrased to wear that outfit. And not a sore loser either. Bravo, her. 
Ji Yeon heads out of the room, barking for Dong Ha to follow her. They need to 'collect evidence' and make their way to the airport because a minor celebrity is supposed to appear. Ji Yeon is hungry, Dong Ha notices and goes off to buy food, the celebrity appears and Ji Yeon doesn't have the camera. EXCEPT, of course, that it's not the celebrity, it's a decoy, and while he was buying the food Dong Ha saw what he believes strongly is the REAL celebrity, and with someone he might not want to be caught with. 
They rush off to get the scoop, and oh, who's this? Due to that famed KDrama lack of peripheral vision or really, the ability to notice anything other than what you're thinking about at that moment, Ji Yeon has been 'just missing' a man who looks very suspiciously just like her ex-fiance. Next week should be interesting...
kakashi: Hm, aren't I glad that my tardiness in adding pictures and stuff to this recap means it IS almost already next week!!! Yay! 

Comments

What could I say that I haven't already said because I can't stop myself from gushing about the Puppy? I love him to bits. I understand that there are still reasons why a 14-year age gap might present issues but if there's ever gonna be a man who can pull it off it is definitely this one, who is ridiculously wonderful in every regard and yet manages NOT to be annoyingly perfect. And Ji Yeon - really, she's the one with some growing up to do. She has the job success but not the people skills, really. They balance each other out, these two.
kakashi: What she said!! 

As for the show - I vaguely recall a bit of rumbling from a few folks about the roughness of the first episode or so (ah yes? wasn't me!), but I would say this is a show which has gelled as a team and is moving along very well. That stupid plant is our key into Puppy's issues (it's still better than the stupid bear!!), and it's frustrating because the plant metaphor is just STUPID because who doesn't know what bulbs do? But anyway. It's a good story and I'm sooo happy right now!

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