My Father Is Strange – episode 9 recap

Dad follows Joong Hee to his apartment door, but Joong Hee won’t let him in. “We have no need to talk. Therefore, don’t bother me anymore,” he tells Dad. Knocking and ringing the bell avails nothing. Dad finally leaves. Joong Hee’s only consolation is Al the turtle. The next day, Dad shows up again and rings the buzzer. Joong Hee won’t answer the door. He showers and gets ready for the day, but before he heads out he checks the video monitor only to discover Dad is still standing there waiting. He calls the building security to escort Dad out.   

Hye Young prepares breakfast for the family. It is out of character for her, but she cheerfully serves up eggs and smoothies. She waits for her siblings to head off to work so that she can talk to Mom and Dad about moving out. Hye Young tells them that she has a friend in Gangnam who has invited her to move in. It’s a win-win situation, she explains. Her friend could use the help with expenses and she has such a long, tiring commute to work that it would be better to sleep there during the week and come home on weekends. Hye Young plays up the exhausting commute and appeals to her parents’ sympathies. Mom says it may be a good idea, but Dad says he will have to think about it. The look on his face isn’t promising.

Jun Young frets about everything: first, that Yoo Joo is pregnant, and second, that he lied about his family’s restaurant. Yoo Joo decides to look up Jun Young’s family’s restaurant online and enters Mok-dong My Father’s Restaurant and Mok-dong Father’s Sushi, but neither returns any results. Uncle finds Jun Young crying on the rooftop. Jun Young spills the news that his girlfriend is pregnant and that he lied about the family restaurant. Now he doesn’t know what to do so he doesn’t answer Yoo Joo’s phone calls. Uncle is sorry that his poor, undeserving sister has a bum of a brother like him and a son like Jun Young.

Mi Young has been on call for her next orders from Tae Soo. He tells her to be ready when Joong Hee arrives at work. She isn’t surprised when Joong Hee ignores her greeting. Joong Hee meets with his agent and carries on in his typical difficult fashion. Most of all, he tells his agent to get rid of Mi Young once and for all. The agent says that he will move her to Sung Joon’s team. This gets under Joong Hee’s skin and in the end, he would rather keep her than have her work for his nemesis. But, he promises to make her life miserable enough that she will quit on her own. Mi Young’s assignment is to get Joong Hee to read the new script that he has refused to even look at. She diligently studies the notes from Tae Soo filled with details of Ahn Joong Hee’s life.

Jung Hwan calls Hye Young. She tells him that Mom won’t disapprove of her moving in, but Dad might be hard to convince. Of course, this is all based on the omission that she is moving in with her boyfriend. Naturally, her parents are under the impression that she is going to room with a girlfriend. Mom does her best to convince Dad to let Hye Young move out; after all, she is 34 and not a teenager or even in her 20s. But Dad is against it. They decide to call a family meeting.

Cheol Soo is studying in his makeshift room at the rec center. Ra Young knocks on the door. She has come to make sure his clothes are appropriate for the wedding tomorrow. A near-brand name will do, she tells him. He will meet her in front of the wedding hall tomorrow.

The Byun family meets to discuss Hye Young moving out. Mi Young is happy for her sister and is in favor. Ra Young has conditions: will the rent be raised? Can she borrow Hye Young’s bag? Can she take over Hye Young’s bedroom? Since Hye Young won’t let her borrow her bag, Ra Young is not in favor of her moving out. Neither is Jun Young who says the world is a dangerous place and as her older brother, he cannot approve. Mom will stand with Dad who states,“I am against it.” He says that he is worried, his decision is final, and the meeting is over.

Hye Young texts Jung Hwan to tell him that her parents won’t approve of her moving. She is frustrated. That night, Mom wants Dad to think about his decision, but he says his mind is made up. Mom knows that Dad can’t bear to see his oldest daughter, who he cherishes, move out. She understands his hesitation, but realizes that her daughter is older and capable. The next morning, Mom explains to Hye Young that Dad is sentimental about his book-smart eldest daughter; he cried so loud when she was born and protects her above all. Hye Young stops by the Snackshack and asks Dad to eat with her. He thinks she wants to butter him up so that he will change his mind, but she is touched by what Mom told her and just wants to show her love.

Mi Young gets a text at 5 a.m. from Joong Hee to pick up eel soup from some remote diner and post a picture as proof. He is determined to drive her crazy so that she’ll quit. Somehow she locates the tiny restaurant in the middle of nowhere and completes her mission. But when she texts Joong Hee that she is downstairs with the soup, he blows her off. “You’re late. Eat it yourself.” She calms herself and goes to the office to wait for her next assignment.

Jung Hwan has dinner with his father. He asks why he is so hard on mother (Landlady Oh). Husband says they don’t have anything in common. Jung Hwan asks his father to try to be understanding. He wants him to go to the coffee shop grand opening with flowers and a congratulatory note. At least we hope there is a grand opening; Landlady Oh has no experience hiring help and drives the good applicants away while attracting others who clearly won’t work out.

There is bad news at the station: Jung Hwan’s show, “Entertainment Today” has been cancelled. Plead as he may, the Chief says he is on standby for now.

Ra Young waits in the lobby for Cheol Soo. He walks in slo-mo looking handsome and debonair, and Ra Young is all smiles. When she congratulates the groom (her ex) and the bride, her ex is a real jerk and embarrasses Ra Young with unflattering comments about her weight. Cheers for Cheol Soo who swoops beside Ra Young, puts his arm around her and pulls her to him. “You’re standing too close to my girlfriend,” he tells Jerk Ex (♥flutter♥). The photographer compliments Ra Young and Cheol Soo as a good-looking couple and suggests they take a picture with the bride and groom. Score for the Young-Soo team! Ra Young looks genuinely pleased and grateful to Cheol Soo. Who knew he had it in him?

Dad waits at the station for Hye Young to get off work. He knows his little girl has grown up, but tells her that she will always be a kid to him and Mom. Hye Young hands Oppa her purse, takes his hand in hers, and skips along, like father and daughter walking home from grade school. It is a sweet, tender moment.

Jun Young has ignored Yoo Joo’s calls all day. Meanwhile, Yoo Joo’s detective skills track down Father’s Sushi (restaurant run by father) and discovers that Jung Young’s Dad own the humble Father’s Snackshack. She drives to the location and calls Jun Young. As she waits, Jun Young comes walking up the street ignoring her call and not realizing she is standing right there. There is no way he can get out of what’s coming. She asks if this is his father’s restaurant. He stammers, “No, well…” and can’t look her in the eye. “I didn’t mean to lie to you,” he offers, but it is a weak statement to his pregnant girlfriend who has caught him at his most pathetic moment. Yoo Joo is understandably upset and swings her purse with all her angry might, crying, picking up bags of garbage and flinging it at Jun Young. He is indefensible at the moment and takes her fury without a fight. She tells him that if she sees him ever again, she will make sure to kill him. Uncle turns the corner and witnesses the pitiful situation. There isn’t anything much to say.

Dad won’t stop trying to reach out to Joong Hee. With a neighbor watching their conversation, Joong Hee reluctantly lets Dad in to avoid a scene. With an indifferent attitude, he tells Dad to go ahead and say what he has come to say.

Comments:

  • Love the dreamy “save” that Cheol Soo pulled off for Ra Young. It’s one of those kdrama moments that makes an otherwise long day seem light and fluffy. Anyway, the ex wasn’t worth her trouble.
  • I love the idea of four single adult children still living at home in a Korean household. At least on TV. And while I want to root for Hye Young to be able to move out, I wish she didn’t have to lie to Mom and Dad.
  • Dad seems fragile. One child wants to move out, and then there is Joong Hee who, we know, is not his biological son. There is something he must want to make right by making him his son, though. It’s complicated.
  • I really want to console Jun Young and I am not even sure why. He is immature and late in getting on his feet, and he deserves every whack he got from Yoo Joo. I can’t even say that his heart is in the right place as an excuse, because he is hiding from his responsibility. Maybe it does boil down to financial responsibility and he feels like he hasn’t amounted to anything in that regard. With the exam around the corner and a pregnant girlfriend, I hope Jun Young can do a double-step and live like a responsible adult. (He is 36 or 37, after all.) His situation is messy and now there is even more pressure on him about the exam. And telling his parents what’s up. And making things right with Yoo Joo.

 

 

 

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