With Hyun Soo in tears over realizing too late that the person she loves has slipped through her fingers, Jung Woo drives her home. What kind of situation is this? His plan to ask Hyun Soo to date him, no – stay by his side, couldn’t have gone worse. He was sure of his timing, but he hadn’t counted on hers. On the ride home he asks what this man she loves does although he isn’t sure why he is interested. It’s awkward between them, but he reads the situation for what it is and tells her that he isn’t going to make her feel uncomfortable (she does work for him). She thanks him for that.
Jung Woo sits in his high-rise window, a lone silhouette against the night and city lights. He didn’t see this coming. Making Hyun Soo his won’t be as easy as he thought. He thinks over what Joon Ha told him about Hyun Soo, She doesn’t just date anyone. She wants to marry someone who she respects and who respects her. “If you want to date Hyun Soo it is important that you win her trust.”
Hyun Soo and Jung Woo have dinner and talk. It’s been a while since he travels a lot for business. He knows she gets offers from other companies and thinks she may feel uncomfortable signing a permanent contract with him. He said he wouldn’t make her uncomfortable, she reminds him, so why hasn’t he offered her a contract?
“What you did just now,” she points at him, “you lift up the right side of your mouth whenever you smile. It’s very sexy.”
“Really? Let’s sign a contract,” he offers.
“Okay. I’ll earn you a lot of money,” she agrees.
He has money. She can just write whatever she wants. She thanks him. He tells her that he will be going to Paris for a month. “Shall I get you a gift?” He is surprised when she says yes. He thought she would refuse? That’s why she said yes. She always makes him laugh.
Jung Sun waves at Jung Woo who has come to Paris to meet with him. When asked what his plans are, Jung Sun fills Jun Woo in: he’ll graduate in a year, and then he wants to work in a restaurant in France for two years to be acknowledged as a chef there. Jung Woo thinks that sounds intense; all work – no dating? He should ask that of Jung Woo, Jung Sun replies, “girls must love you.” No. In fact he got rejected recently Jung Woo admits. That person likes someone else, apparently. Jung Sun says he got rejected before he left for Paris. That person said work was more important. “She’s ambitious. I like her,” teases Jung Woo.
They go back and forth with their love woes – Jung Sun plans on meeting her again when he returns and he will introduce her to Jung Woo. Jung Woo asks what if he takes her away? That won’t be the case, Jung Sun assures him. First, she won’t let that happen, and second, she is seeing someone else and they might get married. Jung Woo puts his hand to his heart in mock pain for his friend. They toast.
In a voiceover Jung Sun says: Never in my wildest dreams did I think that we were having this conversation about the same woman. If I’d known this first, would I have been able to calm his rage a bit? I still wonder.
The producer puts his foot down and tells Director Min and Writer Lee to get their act together. Fight all they want; he’s done. The show must go on. Bottom line: if rating s drop again tomorrow they’re both out.
The team workout is a success. The guys had fun and relieved their stress. Now all they need is beer and chicken. “Did you order this?’ The look up as a delivery man arrives with an order of just that – beer and chicken. They’re surprised, but then Won Joon says, “Speak of the devil,” as Jung Woo saunters across the field toward them. They can’t help but smile.
The guys kick around the ball on the field after eating their fill as Jung Sun and Jung Woo watch from a bench. Jung Sun is happy to see his crew having fun. Jung Woo tells him that he is quite affectionate. “You’ll end up getting hurt.” Jung Sun answers back, “And you’ve put up walls. You won’t get hurt much.” Jung Woo has concluded that, after getting hurt a lot, he divides people into those he should keep by his side and those he shouldn’t. Jung Sun says that he is honored that Jung Woo has kept him by his side. “Be good, don’t disappoint me” Jung Woo warns good-naturedly.
Actually, he wants to talk to Jung Sun about a new TV show, “Star’s Favorite Dish. “Watch it; this week it’s a battle between two French Chefs. By the way, one of the chefs had to cancel, and Jung Sun is the replacement. He asks who the other chef is, but Jung Woo says that you don’t find that out until the day of the event.
Hyun Soo and Director Min sit across from each other. She asks what he wants; he can’t just get new writers with the script already written in her style. He says nothing. “I respect you. All I ask is that you respect me, too,” she continues, trying to find a place of compromise. His reply is as negative as always; he will shoot the episode just as she wrote it. He won’t change a thing. Let’s see how that goes, he says angrily and walks out.
On the way home, Hyun Soo decides to call Jung Sun. The phone rings and rings; he’s left it at home on the coffee table. “I don’t like you. Are you doing exactly what I did to you?” she says out loud. When Jung Sun gets home, he sees the new number and guesses that Hyun Soo tried to call. He smiles.
Hyun Soo and Kyung work late at the office. The filming will start early in the morning. They aren’t sure how things will go with the unpredictable, difficult director. For a moment they enjoy a hot cup of coffee together – one of life’s small pleasures.
Jung Sun returns Hyun Soo’s call. “Oh my,” she says when she sees that it’s him and steps out. He asks how she knew his number. She got it from Won Joon. Why is he being picky? She tells him she met the director. He says it’s not his field so he won’t know what to say. He just has to listen, she says. He’s not good at that; he’s a man. He wants to solve things.
She’ll talk to a girlfriend, then. Girls are good at listening. So, she has no particular reason for calling him, he asks? No. They hang up.
“I should flirt with him,” she decides, remembering the time they jogged together five years ago as a solution when she felt sad. She sends him a text: Will you solve it for me?
How? he texts back.
The next morning they jog – it’s his solution. They talk while they run. He asks if she will give up. She won’t; she is going to work after. There is a big gap between watching a drama and producing one, she says. It did seem hard, he replies, having been on the set that day she and the director fought. Did he know she was the main writer then? He doesn’t answer. “You knew?” He won’t say that Hong Ah scouted him and runs off without answering.
Won Joon waits for the other chefs to show up. They trickle in and he calls them lazy. Why did he make a chat and order them to show up? It’s his new plan to get the crew in ship-shape. “Where there’s a will, there’s a way,” he begins. But they tease him for sounding like an old man. He continues undaunted: he wants to rekindle a spirit of cooperation now that they will be filling in for Chef On while he appears on a TV show. They need to focus and work together so they can do their best. When they ask where Chef On is, Won Joon says he can’t be bothered; he is working hard to turn over a new leaf. Another old man saying, they tease.
Jung Sun thinks it must be hard to have to strive for good ratings every week; that is a lot of pressure. Plus, she has to keep up with writing and be good at it. That’s not it, she tells him. She just wants to give the viewers something to get through their day.
When I say “good” you say “soup.” Good – Soup. Good – Soup! Let’s go! That’s how Won Joon keeps the crew in tow. As they run along the path one of them spots Jung Sun and calls out, “Hey, Chef On!” Won Joon greets Hyun Soo and introduces her as the writer of “Unruly Detectives” saying, “I told you I knew her.” They bow, impressed. While the crew waits at the table, they watch Hyun Soo and Chef On ordering and bickering all the while. Newest chef, Min Ho, is sure they like each other. Isn’t she older? Does that matter? Then how does Hong Ah fit into the equation? They try to figure out their mysterious boss’s love life.
One of the chefs tells Hyun Soo that he is a fan of hers. She thanks him and hopes that he’ll keep watching.
Kyung calls Hong Ah and asks where she is. Shouldn’t she be here helping with the script? Hong Ah is uninterested; won’t Hyun Soo just write it all herself anyway? But things are chaotic with the difficult director, Kyung reminds Hong Ah. Hyun Soo has it made, Hong Ah replies, practically turning green with the overarching envy that drives her. Mr Park is on her side and so is the production company. She tells Kyung that she has somewhere else to go and won’t be in.
Joon Ha has been working at the office lately, sleeping and eating there. Out of habit, Kyung offers to make him something to eat. He doesn’t even look up from his game when he tells her to make him some rice. Then she stops herself; “Am I mentally ill?” she rants that she is always doing everything for everyone else. He watches her flit around the kitchenette and tells her that she’s cute. They’re too comfortable around each other but that isn’t reason for Kyung to not filter some of the things she says about him. Like the fact that he is pathetic for still paying his ex-wife. No wonder he doesn’t have any money and expects to eat there. Joon Ha’s smile fades at the jab; Kyung catches herself and tones it down, asking if he would like a fried egg. “I get hurt too,” he sulks. She says that’s why she’s offering to make him eggs. With a pout-y face he asks for boiled eggs, then.
Hong Ah has made a beeline to Jung Woo. He asks why she is there. She sets down a folder of scripts that she’s written for a daily drama that she submitted to writing contests. She wants him to review them and produce the drama. He’ll regret it if he turns her down. He is blown away at her groundless confidence. She even compares herself to Hyun Soo, saying that her writing is more popular. He doesn’t think criticizing Ms. Lee is a good way to make herself look better. But Hong Ah intends to sound bold and brazen. He admits her approach is intense. She will do what it takes to get noticed, even if it means squashing a friend. He tells her that he will consider her submission. “Thank you,” she smiles. Her foot is in the door.
Won Joon looks over the script for Star’s Favorite Dish. Jung Sun is just returning home after the TV shoot. Won Joon asks what they will make. They won’t tell the chefs until that day. And he won’t know who the other chef that he will compete against is until then, either. It’s a difficult set-up. He asks Won Joon to research all the dishes that Star guest Lee Duel Lae likes.
So, is he dating Hyun Soo? Won Joon is eager to find out. Jung Sun says he must focus on Good Soup and Good Soup only.
Mother and beau d’jour Daniel make their entrance at Good Soup. They wait on the terrace for Jung Sun. When he joins them, Mother congratulates him on his upcoming TV appearance. Daniel compliments him, too, saying that he is young and handsome and will do well. Daniel can’t help but add that it reminds him of his youth. Mother drips with sugary sweetness and tells Daniel that he still holds his own. In fact, all the men she’s been with are handsome. She tells Jung Sun that he can thank her for his good looks. It’s the type of conversation that Jung Sun hates the most.
As Jung Sun stands to leave, Daniel tells him what he has come to say, “Thank you every time.” Mother nervously fumbles. She tries to stop Daniel, saying that her son doesn’t want to hear such things. But Daniel is proud and insists on thanking Jung Sun man-to-man for his sponsorship. He recognizes Jung Sun’s generosity for sponsoring every exhibit and is a big enough man to say so. Mother shifts and sputters; she’s made a mess of things. Jung Sun gives his mother a look of disdain and tells Daniel not to mention it.
Mother follows Daniel outside. He is angry that he’s been made a fool of, realizing by Jung Sun’s reaction that he didn’t purchase his paintings like she said. Why did she lie? Where did she get the money? That’s not it, she insists. What’s the difference? Her son’s boss, Mr. Park, bought them out of his generosity. They are practically brothers – her son and his senior, and Daniel can’t blame her for wanting it to look like her son was the sponsor, can he? Isn’t he acting mad for no reason?
Mother isn’t sorry one bit for what she’s done, but she knows that Jung Sun won’t let this slide. All he wants to know is who she borrowed the money from; he only hopes that it wasn’t someone he knows. She didn’t borrow money, she doesn’t have to. Daniel gives her money and she’s saved up. So, he shouldn’t worry or be so mad at her. Does she have to be with a man, he asks his mother? Will he live with her, then, she throws back at him? They both know the answer to that. Can’t she just live on her own? Even if it’s only for a while, having a man that loves her . . .
Jung Sun wants this conversation to end here. But, who did she borrow the money from? She didn’t, she promises. Can’t he trust his own mother?
Hyun Soo says that it will be bad if there are low ratings for today’s episode. Kyung wonders how she says it with a smile, though. That’s so that blessings will come her way, Hyun Soo says cheerfully. Kyung smiles big in that case. Hong Ah arrives with a bag of Estee Lauder for Hyun Soo, “You look really tired these days.” She asks Hyun Soo to take her name off the script as assistant writer. Kyung doesn’t get it, but Hyun Soo does what her friend asks. When Hong Ah offers to buy food, Kyung guesses that something good must have happened, but Hyun Soo says it’s the opposite. She only offers to buy when something bad has happened. Hong Ah is moody and sharp-tongued toward Kyung.
They watch the episode: there is a scene in the mall. In the middle of a cooking demo (with Jung Sun), gangsters surround Lead actor Shim. He takes off running , disrupting the crowd that has gathered.
Next thing, the episode is wrapping up with a fight scene on the beach. It’s random, not the original script Hyun Soo wrote, but Hong Ah says that at least the scenery is vast and the action draws viewers in.
Hyun Soo can’t sleep knowing the ratings will be out soon. She looks at the clock: 2:10 a.m. As she peruses comments on the drama site, she comes across one that cheers her on: I support you, Hyun Soo. Jung Sun is up late, too, sharpening his knives in preparation for the next day’s TV appearance. How could Hyun Soo know that he was the one who wrote that comment?
Director Min doesn’t waste a second calling Hyun Soo as soon as the ratings come out. They dropped; her scenes – the ones he kept against his better judgment – were low. The fight scene in the lot – the one he changed – was high. Nothing else needs to be said. The ratings say it all, she knows. Hyun Soo eats a warm bowl of comfort food alone.
Jung Woo calls: “You sound cheery. Did you see the ratings?” She tries to sound upbeat even while apologizing that he will lose money because of her. He is checking on her to make sure she is okay; she wants to ease his mind and says that she is escaping and eating something. Then she must be okay. Truthfully, she’s scared she admits. If she is being a woman and leaning on him, he’ll take it. That’s not it, she answers. He consoles her by telling her to keep her sight straight ahead; that way she can get up again is she falls. Poor Hyun Soo is having a hard time. Kyung is worried as she reads the negative article about the drama. Hong Ah, the realist in this situation, comments that Hyun Soo will take the blame. Kyung defends her, but Hong Ah points out that it’s true; Hyun Soo was the one who made a scene that time and now all eyes are on her.
Just then, Hong Ah receives a call and her entire countenance changes: she’s the winner of the HNC drama series contest! Hyun Soo and Kyung congratulate her. “This is the beginning for you,” Hyun Soo hugs her. Kyung is a bit down, saying that she works hard, too. Hyun Soo tries to comfort her, saying that luck is involved. But Hong Ah doesn’t want to hear that she won because of luck. Can’t they be happy for her? Hyun Soo realizes that her friend should get to revel in her glory and sends her off to tell her family and others. She won’t let her bad circumstances at the moment affect her sincere well wishes for Hong Ah.
Hong Ah hurries off to Good Soup but is disappointed to find that Jung Sun has left for his TV program shoot. Won Joon runs after her and asks if everything is okay. When she tells him that she won, he congratulates her wholeheartedly. “Now you can be nice,” he adds. He is such a great guy, Hong Ah comments, too bad he doesn’t make her heart flutter. With a pained look he tells her how much that hurts. But he whirls her around to celebrate her happy news.
Even though Hong Ah knows Jung Sun is at the studio for his shoot, she calls anyway. She wants to hear him congratulate her and obligates him to a meal to celebrate her news. When Jung Sun enters the green room he stops short. His competitor for “Star’s Favorite Dish” is none other than his former boss, Chef Lee. The look on Jung Sun’s face tells that he is shocked and concerned. He hadn’t anticipated this twist.
The producer meets with Hyun Soo. He has believed in her all along, and when there are disagreements between the writer and the director but they agree to work it out, he stays out of it. Except when the director is unhappy and ratings are this low. “Let’s bring in another writer,” he suggests. It’s a blow to Hyun Soo, but she realizes that it is what he has to do. She says she will think about who to bring on and get back to him. If Director Min is difficult, actor Shim is even more so. He refuses to do the shoot, leaving Director Min and the entire production in a bind.
The announcer introduces today’s famous guest, Lee Duel Lae on “Star’s Favorite Dish.” The two chefs stand alert, ready to tackle the guest’s request for bouillabaisse and a side dish. They are given 40 minutes to cook. The chefs work meticulously as the MC critiques the process. It looks like veteran chef Lee has the advantage as the show proceeds. At one point Jung Sun discovers that the sous vide machine wasn’t turned on and has to ad lib. He seems worried and rushes around trying to complete his dish on time.
Chef Lee rings the bell indicating that he has finished with time to spare. On the other hand, Jung Sun goes down to the final 5,4,3,2,1 count and barely rings the bell in the nick of time. Ms. Lee tastes the dishes with care and anticipation.
Kyung makes comments online complaining about actor Shim who is causing trouble for the drama. She wants to be loyal to Hyun Soo. She gets a warning to keep the internet culture clean. Kyung, the ever-ready cheerleader, tells Hyun Soo not to worry, she will find something else. Oh, that sounds bad, it’s not what she meant. Hyun Soo is happy to have her as a friend and co-worker. It’s time to head home.
Now for the real test – guest Lee tastes each of the chef’s creations. Who will her choice be? The show wraps up. Lee Deul Lae chats with Jung Sun and tells him that his dish brought her back to when she was in her twenties. Although Chef Lee’s food was better, his created a nostalgia that pleased her. “Thank you. That’s why I cook – to make people happy. The winner of today’s competition is Chef On Jung Sun.
On his way out Jung Sun runs into Jung Woo who is doing damage control for the production. First, he congratulates Jung Sun on his win. About the drama – there is a lot of bashing criticism. It’s the worst situation. They’ve asked for another writer. And, he is on his way to beg Actor Shim to finish filming. He’ll beat him up if he has to. Jung Sun laughs, hoping Jung Woo isn’t the one who gets beat up. Jung Woo asks if Jung Sun has talked with Hyun Soo lately. He thinks it would be nice to make her something nice to eat. “Not that she’d take it,” he adds.
Suddenly Jung Sun wants to see Hyun Soo. He calls Hong Ah and tells her he is sorry, he can’t meet her. She doesn’t mind waiting, she tells him. She wants him to congratulate her. “Don’t wait for me. I’ll cook you something nice later.” Hong Ah’s expression is scary. “Who are you seeing instead?” she demands.
Hyun Soo is waiting outside when Jung Sun walks up. She seems unusually passive – maybe beat down. She clumsily spills the cups and hot water. Sung Jun reaches to help but she insists on serving the tea. “Just let the one who is good at these things do it. I’m good at things like this, so you should do what you are good at,” he says as he picks up the cups and fixes their drinks. Hyun Soo doesn’t argue. She sits down and to his surprise says that she doesn’t think she is good at anything.
Jung Sun turns to look at her; he didn’t expect to hear something like that from someone with a strong fighting spirit. “I’m best at writing but look at me now,” Hyun Soo says listlessly. “I’m scared,” she says as the tears fall. Jung Sun puts his hand to her cheek but she fuses, “I’m acting like a woman. I can’t believe I’m acting this way so you will console me”
He scoops her up in his arms and carries her to the couch. The way they look at one another says they’ve gotten over the past five years. He holds her and asks, “Are you scared?” It is a dream-like moment.
Ding-dong! Hong Ah rings the doorbell.
- Boy, that opening voiceover really has me feeling nervous. I’m afraid I’ll be on edge for the rest of the drama, knowing that Jung Woo’s rage is going to be an issue when he finds out that Jung Sun’s girlfriend is Hyun Soo and the man he got rejected over is Jung Sun. His two favorite people. Super nervous about that. I have that Jung Sun and Jung Woo are going to be competitors for the love of one woman. I almost have second lead syndrome, but Jung Sun is killing it with charm, character, and lots of potentially devoted love.
- Before I forget, I noticed that Hyun Soo didn’t let herself be a woman (who needs a man’s shoulder to cry on) with Jung Woo even though he welcomed it. But when she cried in front of Jung Soo and admitted she was scared, she didn’t hold back. That was very telling to me in terms of where her heart is firmly planted.
- Love the chef brothers and how they’re growing close. Love their devotion to Sung Jun and how they want to do their best in his absence when he’s shooting a program. Won Joon is the best friend ever; loyal, nice, a hard worker, works behind the scenes, mood elevator – he deserves something good out of this. And I don’t mean Hong Ah.
- I also appreciate the way Jung Woo has everyone’s back in big and small ways. Like the chicken and beer, and buying Daniel’s mediocre paintings – he knows Mother’s game but plays along just to be a good guy. He really does have all the bases covered, but how will his story change once he finds out about Jung Sun and Hyun Soo? (Especially since they haven’t done anything wrong; no one knows that the love lines are so crossed.)
- One thing I’m not sure about is why Jung Woo was willing to take Hong Ah’s script when she was so forward and mean toward Hyun Soo. I would think he would have strongly disliked that aspect about her bold move. Perhaps he views her like Jung Sun’s mother and is too nice to tell her and Hong Ah what he really thinks. Anyway, it will make things messy to have Hong Ah around Jung Woo, too.
- Hyun Soo is feeling pretty beat up these days. Even her backers Jung Woo and the producer can’t fix what has happened. Ratings are the bottom line and right now, they’re low. Hyun Soo takes the blame but feels scared that she won’t be able to overcome this hurdle. Jung Sun to the rescue! I’m not sorry one bit that at her weak moment when she is feeling vulnerable in her career, Jung Sun is by her side. He needed to know as a man that the woman he cares for needs him sometimes, too. Ah, romance~
- I’m on the edge of my seat wondering how the production issues will be solved. Will Hong Ah be the new writer? Will Joon Ha, Kyung, and Hyun Soo break away and form their own writing group for a cooking show? Where does Jung Woo fit in all this? The story, the acting, the drama is all very good and satisfying.
- Writers and chefs – I think they make a good combination because they are both so passionate about their careers.
- That sweet, romantic ending – ah! ♥