My Father Is Strange – ep 37 recap

Oh no! It’s that episode.

Husband hastily signs the consent form for Landlady Oh’s surgery even though she pleads with him to read it over carefully. The doctor says they will be down for her shortly. Landlady Oh is scared, but Husband is brusque and insensitive. Hye Young looks on with disdain toward Husband’s uncaring attitude. Jung Hwan is the one who comforts his mother and walks beside her as she is wheeled to surgery.

As they wait during the surgery, Hye Young mentions to Jung Hwan that she wasn’t aware of how cruel his father’s comments to his mother could be. Jung Hwan says his father was always aloof but he thought it was because he was busy as a reporter. Now he realizes it is just the way his father is. Jung Hwan asks if she can understand a bit how his mother obsesses over him, now that she has seen the family dynamics for herself. She can to an extent, Hye Young tells him, but understanding is not the same as accepting. Husband shows up after the surgery, distanced from the whole situation. He went to the sauna because waiting at the hospital seemed unnecessary to him. Jung Hwan firmly tells his father that he should stay overnight; he and Hye Young have to go to work. When Husband balks, Hye Young reminds him that he is her guardian and should act like one. She can barely hold back her anger.

Joong Hee stares intently at the two pictures thinking, they aren’t the same person. He tries to reach his mother but there’s no answer. Joong Hee is deeply troubled.

Mi Young is pleased at all the positive comments about Actor Ahn these days. She is relieved that the rumors about Dad and Joong Hee dating a psychiatrist have died down. As she absent-mindedly walks down the hallway glued to her phone, Joong Hee steps out into the hall and sees her. Do you know anything about this mess? Could it be that you and I are unrelated? Could I like you and should I be happy about that? Joong Hee’s head whirls with such thoughts.

Someone passes by carrying a wobbly stack of boxes that begins to topple on unsuspecting Mi Young. Joong Hee sweeps in and pulls her to safety, lingering with her in his arms for just that brief but intense moment.

“Watch where you’re going,” he says coolly.

Mi Young catches her breath against a wall for a genuine be still my beating heart moment. *That swoop~*

The whole day has Joong Hee shook up and he asks to meet with psychiatrist ex-girlfriend on short notice. His face reflects his pain and confusion. Can a person be so different after so many years? Could the scar disappear? Can memories be so drastically altered? He hands the two pictures to her; she agrees they are two different people. Joong Hee seems to want to hear that all the coincidences really could happen – because if not, then it means what he fears most – that Dad isn’t his father after all. So then, who is this person?

The Byun family meets up to watch Grandma on Korean Language Quiz Show. How did she hide if from them? But they are all thrilled to see this side of Grandma. Who knew? Ra Young can’t believe she didn’t wear makeup and Mom tells Grandma she should have asked to borrow something to wear. But that’s not important; they have so much fun watching Grandma answer the questions correctly. Even though she didn’t win in the end, everyone is proud and impressed by Grandma’s bravery and composure on the program.

She earns “respect” from everyone – it’s Grandma’s shining moment.

Dad waits up for Joong Hee. He is concerned because he usually calls to say he will be late. He paces in front of the Snackshack, worried that he hasn’t heard from him. Joong Hee walks up from behind and sees Dad waiting for him but goes to his rooftop room without letting Dad know he’s home.

All he can think about are the contradictions: Dad and his mother not recognizing each other; Dad not recalling the name Ahn Soo Jin when they first met . . .  Why is he saying he’s my dad if he isn’t? Is my mother right that he is trying to benefit from me being a celebrity? But how?

Joong Hee falls asleep sitting on the floor, his head resting on his arms.

.

The next morning Joong Hee listens for Mom and Dad to leave their room before sneaking in to take Dad’s toothbrush. DNA testing is one sure way of finding out the truth. He is surprised by Mom and Dad coming back to their room and hides the toothbrush, making the excuse that he needed to use the bathroom seeing as the other one was in use. He drops off the toothbrush at the Human Gene Research Center that very morning. Dad asks Mom if she’s seen his toothbrush – it is missing and it was practically new. Mom casually tells him to grab another one in the drawer. It doesn’t dawn on either of them that Joong Hee may have taken it.

Landlady Oh calls for Husband to help her up to use the bathroom. He is thoughtless and helps her out of bed only after she tells him she can’t get up on her own. Jung Hwan promised to take over the shift at the hospital that evening, but he’s forgotten that he has an important interview at 6 p.m. He calls his father to stay longer, but he, too, has a special engagement that evening. Jung Hwan calls his aunt but she isn’t available, either. Hye Young, who fell asleep on the couch after staying up into the wee hours working, offers to stay with her m-i-l that evening. She overheard Jung Hwan’s phone calls and doesn’t want him to miss the interview. Jung Hwan cutely offers to deduct a violation point from the Marriage Contract for her generous offer. (Yes, he’d better do that for all she has to put up with. He owes her.)

Ra Young dashes out for a quick lunch during work. She runs into Chairman Park who tells her that Cheol Soo is busy and can’t meet her. He suggests they eat lunch together and takes her to a fancy restaurant where the serve such tiny portions that Ra Young has to squint to see what’s on her plate. Chairman Park has something for her: it’s a limited designer bag that Ra Young could only dream about. The Chairman tells her it is her reward for convincing Cheol Soo to return hoe. Upon hearing that, Ra Young returns the purse to the Chairman. He went to a lot of trouble to find the perfect gift, he insists, and sends it back to her end of the table. Ra Young refuses it: after all, such a purse requires a wardrobe upgrade. He may as well give it to his wife. And hear this, Chairman, she doesn’t keep secrets well, especially from her boyfriend – like having lunch with his father and getting bribed. As hard as it is for Ra Young to give the designer purse of her dreams, she consoles herself for sticking to her principles: she won’t take bribes for favors. Good for you, Ra Young.

Cheol Soo wants to eat lunch with her but she insists that they sit at separate tables. The Director can’t be seen with a part-timer, now, can he? She is watching out for his reputation; she knows how the world works and she knows how his father thinks. In fact, she tells him, she had lunch with his father. He jumps up, but she tells him to sit down; nothing much happened. Just be manly in front of her, she tells Cheol Soo with a cute wink, in a way that strokes his ego. Ra Young is a smart gal.

Yoo Joo prepares for her presentation. She doubles over with stomach pains, but presses through. Mr. Kang notices her stopping briefly and asks if she is all right. Yoo Joo manages to make it all the way through even though she is short of breath. The board likes her proposal and decides to go with it. They ask her to take the next steps in implementing the idea and she accepts. However, after everyone leaves, Yoo Joo faints. Mr. Kang returns with a question for her and finds her lying on the floor. A co-worker informs Mi Young that the ambulance is on its way for Yoo Joo. She dashes to Yoo Joo’s side. Jun Young hails a cab; his expression is nothing but worry.

Mom gets to the hospital room to find Mi Young and Jun Young at Yoo Joo’s bedside. She’s had a miscarriage and is resting. Mom tells Jun Young that he must console his wife and not show his heartache; yes, it is hard on him, but isn’t Yoo Joo the one suffering the most? Mom is the strength of the family and does her best to help her family navigate this unfortunate and sad occurrence.

Mom and Mi Young stop by the market for beef bones, eel, and octopus. Dad will make some hearty food for when Yoo Joo returns home to help her regain her vigor. Mom calls Hye Young and asks if she will be home over the weekend. She tells Mom that her m-i-l is in the hospital. “What? Why is everyone getting hurt and sick,” Mom replies, and tells Hye Young that Yoo Joo has had a miscarriage.

Grandma brings her friends to the pizza shop where Aunt and Uncle are working. She got some prize money for appearing on the show and is thrilled to treat them and be able to show off a little. She orders the most expensive pizza there is. One of the women notices a poster of Joong Hee in Oh My Boss and repeats rumors she’s heard: surely the Dad is using Joong Hee to get money. Why else would he let him move in? Grandma practically throws the woman down as if they were in a MMA ring; why would that woman say such a thing when she doesn’t know anything about it?

Grandma fiercely defends Joong Hee and Dad, their connection unbeknownst to her puzzled friends. Uncle and Aunt have to intervene.

Hye Young arrives at Landlady Oh’s hospital room and overhears Husband talking about how he should have refused to marry her thirty-eight years ago when her parents objected. She’s had enough of her f-i-l’s insensitivity. While she won’t interfere in their decision to graduate marriage, Hye Young tells Husband that he is forcing his wife to accept conditions when she is sick in bed. He is bullying her and that’s a foul. Furthermore, he is a blockhead for not having basic manners not to eat in front of a patient who cannot have food yet. Even a child knows better. Hye Young wonders how Landlady Oh put up with him for all these years. Landlady Oh is shocked but thankful that her d-i-l is defending her. Now Husband is upset with Hye Young.

He runs into Jung Hwan on the way out and jumps down his throat. Jung Hwan shows up to find a tense situation. No one is saying much. Seeing as he has arrived to stay with his mother, Hye Young leaves without saying a word. What’s going on? he wonders.

Hye Young takes out her pen and dictates: Goodness; I hate this crap. I knew it. You have to be crazy to be married.

Jun Young helps Yoo Joo into the house. Mom and Dad tell their son to take Yoo Joo to their room to rest. As he sits up on the rooftop thinking, Hye Young come by to comfort him. He admits that he can’t help but think “If only she would have rested, slowed down a bit, not stayed up late working.” He knows he shouldn’t feel that way but he has such thoughts. Hye Young holds his hand: “I know you’re heartbroken. But you have to be there for Yoo Joo. If I can do anything, let me know.” He thanks his sister for making time for him. I love how the siblings are supporting of each other.

Yoo Joo can’t sleep. She looks worn out and as grey complexioned as can be. Mom tells her “it could have been anyone. It must be heartbreaking. But don’t blame yourself; it’s not your fault.” She tells her to rest more and they’ll have breakfast together in the morning.

Joong Hee sits at bar; he’s plastered. His mother calls and tells him that she doesn’t know anyone in the picture he sent her. Was she supposed to recognize them? To her, they’re strangers. Another confirmation: the picture of Dad with Jun Young as a baby isn’t the same man in the picture his mother gave him.

Joong Hee  takes a taxi to Father’s Snackshack – it’s late and the store is dark and locked. He pounds on the door furiously, sloppily drunk crying out, “Why did you deceive me?” Just then Mi Young walks up and is alarmed, “What’s the matter?” she asks surprised and concerned.

He approaches her: “You knew, didn’t you?

“What? Know what?” He is not making sense.

He forcefully takes her arm shouting, “You knew. Did you know? I’m sure you did. Tell me!” he demands, scaring Mi Young with his crazy behavior.

Mi Young winces. She looks at him, unsure of what is happening, a little afraid at his unpredictable and uncontrollable actions.

He pulls himself together, realizing that he was forceful and apologizes, “I’m sorry. I’m sorry,” He lifts his hand to her cheek, tears streaming from his eyes. It’s a confusing moment for Mi Young. He lowers his foggy head, apologizes again, turns, and walks away.

When he collapses, Mi Young calls Dad for help. He carries him up to bed. “Why did he drink so much?” Dad wonders. “Is something going on?” He tells Mi Young to go on to bed; he’ll watch over Joong Hee. Mi Young lay in bed thinking over the odd gesture of a very drunk Joong Hee brushing her cheek after his outburst. What’s with him?

The next morning, Joong Hee wakes up and finds a note from Dad at his bedside: Why did you drink so much? Have some tea and honey and come downstairs for tomato pasta and vanilla ice cream.

Instead, Joong Hee goes to his studio apartment. He receives a text: DNA test results delivered by currier. The envelope is at his door. He opens it and reads the results: Do Not Match.

Comments:

  • I’m glad Mom said what she said to Yoo Joo: “It can happen to anybody. Don’t blame yourself, it wasn’t your fault.” Even though I suspected that she would have a miscarriage given all the indications along the way, I’m still sorry that she and Jun Young have to work through this. While Jun Young expressed thoughts of blaming Yoo Joo to Hye Young – it’s probably a healthy thing not to hold it in. I hope he can refrain from saying anything like that to Yoo Joo. And what will the ramifications be at work given the anti-pregnant working woman culture? In a way, Yoo Joo finds herself in a lose-lose situation: work will say “I told you so” but if she would have quit under the pressure, she would have felt that it was unfair and not her decision. It will be interesting to see where this story line goes.
  • Mom is such a good mom! She knows what to say and when to say it – to Jun Young about the loss of their baby, to Yoo Joo who is worn out and grieving, to Dad when he is flustered, to Grandma who has surprised her even after all these years – she’s the backbone of the family. With what’s coming up, she’ll need to muster all of her motherness to help the family weather the storm of the truth being revealed.
  • Joong Hee is already devastated. His questions are completely right – Why did Dad mislead him? It doesn’t make any sense. Of course he is confused, angry, feeling betrayed – I feel he is in a dark place. With the DNA results and his mother’s confirmation that he two pictures are two different people, I think Joong Hee is going to disappear.
  • There’s nothing like not being cared for by your spouse when you’ve had surgery to open your eyes to their true nature and the fact that you’ve been putting up with it forever. Realizing that putting up with that person isn’t in your best interest is huge. I predict the tables will turn and Landlady Oh will want to get a divorce and that will shake up Husband. They’re both such toxic personalities. Hye Young tried her best to do the duty of a daughter-in-law and to support her husband by offering to sit with m-i-l. When she needed to step in she did, although she would prefer not to have to. Now, she thinks she was right to begin with – that marriage isn’t worth it. Well, it’s been nothing but ha hassle for her since before the marriage. I kind of don’t think Jung Hwan is worth it, frankly, although there’s no accounting for taste.
  • Ra Young wasn’t even swayed once she knew Chairman Park’s motive. Good for her. I love that she doesn’t flinch an inch in the Chairman’s presence like everyone else; how great is that! He can’t bully her like he is used to bullying people to get his way. 100 points to Ra Young! The Park family conglomerate could learn a few pointers on life from out part-timer.
  • Grandma, the tough old bird, defends her family to the mat, even if her opponent is an old friend. Grandma is consistent and principled; if Mom is the backbone of the family, Grandma is the family’s source of courage and grit.
  • Did you see Jun Young and Yoo Joo’s situation coming, too?
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2 thoughts on “My Father Is Strange – ep 37 recap

  1. I’m disappointed very much so because of husband…who does that really. He’s insensitive and immature I’m not a fan of lady Oh but come on a little sympathy is much appreciated.

    Miscarriage i agree with you work will say ‘i told you so ‘ and already JY is having those thoughts. She should have rested guess it was all about priorities the baby /her job. That being said at least mum is with her all the way

    Women are really stepping up being there for each other….am i the only one who liked HY when she stood up for lady Oh. Mum giving comfort to YJ and of course grandma goodness it was refreshing. Who knew RY would give up what she loves…designer bag all because she found love considering she used to fight with HY because of those. She really found something more important and it’s awesome to see that she matured.

    Poor JH. Thanks for the recap

    Liked by 1 person

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