It’s hard for Jung Sun to deal with his parents. He always thought his mother was the most beautiful woman in the world.
Looking back, he realizes that she always adjusted herself to his dad. His mother craves her son’s attention, but her behavior has turned him off from giving her affection a long time ago. She wants his approval of her lifestyle choices; his answer is that parents usually clean up their child’s mess. Her phone rings, it’s Daniel. She flits off to meet him. Jung Sun thinks: The person she adjusts herself to is the man she just got a call from, it’s no longer my father.
Jung Sun’s father stops by Good Soup; he saw the article featuring him as a chef. They sit stiffly facing each other. It is awkward for Jung Sun to hear that his father is thinking of bringing the family to eat there and to introduce his younger siblings to him (from another marriage). His father asks about his mother. Jung Sun nods. He tells Jung Sun that some people have a hard time living together – that’s how it was for his mother and him. That’s a very poor excuse for having committed violence, Jung Sun thinks. As he leaves, his father tells him not to sell the land that his grandfather left him.
I feel uncomfortable when I see my parents. It’s complicated and I don’t like complicated. Then I overreact because I don’t want to hesitate. Then I suppress myself because I don’t want to overreact. That’s the kind of person I am.
Jung Woo is on his way to convince actor Shim to return to the set. Jung Sun asks if that’ll be easy and Jung Woo says no; that’s why he is going himself. Jung Woo wonders where Jung Sun is headed. He replies that he will decide after he makes a call. “Are you seeing someone?’ Jung Woo pries. Jung Sun laughs and tells him to stop checking up on him. And when is he going to bring a girlfriend around? Jung Woo suddenly acts mysterious and tells him to wait just a little bit more.
Hyun Soo opens the fridge – it’s empty. Jung Sun calls and asks for her address. He thinks they can at least be friends who cheer up one another. She puts on lipstick and wonders if she is in any situation right now to meet men. Especially Jung Sun who she thinks isn’t interested in her anymore. But when he comes over, she allows herself to fall apart in front of him. He takes care of her, carrying her over to the couch and telling her to rest while he makes something to eat. For a moment, they look into one another’s eyes, as if reevaluating their feelings.
Jung Sun works with the little she has in the house and whips up a respectable dinner. She is excited, but he tells her to stay still until he plates it properly. With a sprinkle of basil and a dash of sauce, dinner is ready. Hyun Soo takes pictures of the food. “It’s nothing much,” he tells her. But to her, it’s something special, she replies. He seems pleased at that. He tells her that he has come to listen to her problems without trying to solve them. She appreciates his effort. So, there’s a new writer, the actor refuses to act, the articles are aggressive and accusatory…just saying it out loud makes her feel better. It’s hard and it’s painful. “You can cry if you want,” he tells her, which is enough to make her tear up. She wipes away the tears, trying hard to smile anyway. The doorbell rings.
Jung Sun opens the door and is caught off-guard to find Hong Ah standing there. “What are you doing here?” she asks, her face turning shades of angry red and envious green. Hyun Soo calls for her to come on in, oblivious of the interaction between her two guests. When Hong Ah’s words are sharp, Hyun Soo is taken aback. She knows Hong Ah’s personality well enough to know that she is mad, but she doesn’t know why. Not only that, Hong Ah is rude toward Jung Sun. The air is tense. Hong Ah joins them at the table, but she can’t stand to see how Jung Sun caters to Hyun Soo, and soon gets up to leave. Hyun Soo asks if something happened, she seems upset. Hong Ah says that they should be feeling the opposite considering their situations; she should be the happy one and Hyun Soo should be the sad one. She makes it more than obvious that she is upset to see the two of them together.
Jung Woo tracks down actor Shim in a private club room. He tells the hostesses to leave. Actor Shim, who is drunk, slaps Jung Woo for acting like a big shot. When he strikes again, Jung Woo forcefully stops the blow and tells him to sit down. He’s found something about him – that accident he caused after drinking, does he think it is all in the past? The victims don’t think so. The issue might surface again, and he might be the one to bring it up. Actor Shim isn’t stupid enough to miss the point Jung Woo is making. They have come to an understanding. Actor Shim will be on the set in the morning and will cooperate.
Hyun Soo thanks Jung Sun for coming over. He tells her to rest. She has something to ask him – it’s personal. He immediately answers that the restaurant is in deficit. “Huh? That’s not what I was going to ask,” she tells him. “It’s about Hong Ah. What’s your relationship with her?” He tells her that they are friends. She wonders if that’s how Hong Ah feels. He doesn’t think two people have to clarify their friend status, unless they were previously in a relationship. Which they weren’t.
Jung Woo rings Hyun Soo. He is standing outside her apartment, but when she says she is hanging out with a friend, he tells her to have fun. Oh, Actor Shim will be on the set in the morning, he informs her. A bit of good news, perhaps. She thanks him and tells him to have a good night and hangs up. “Have a good night?” he repeats, having hoped for something more from her. As he heads down the street, Jung Sun leaves Hyun Soo’s and heads in the opposite direction.
When Jung Sun gets to his apartment, he finds Hong Ah waiting out front. She is mad that he canceled their “date” and ran to Hyun Soo. She demands his attention and asks if Hyun Soo is more important than her. He tells her that Hyun Soo is more important than anything. It’s what Hong Ah hates hearing the most. He knows how she feels, she insists. She knows how he feels, he volleys back, and never led her on. He can’t be responsible for her emotions. He tells her not to be violent with her emotions again. She is outraged, calling him a jerk, and telling him that he ruined her special day when she got what she wanted the most and expected him to be there to congratulate her. She is desperate in front of him – the thing guys hate, and vows to make him regret treating her this way and not choosing her.
Above all, Hyun Soo remains professional through the turmoil and completes writing episode 9 of “Unruly Detectives.” She sends it off to Kyung, Director Kim, Hong Ah, and Jung Woo.
Won Joon returns Jung Sun’s call that he missed earlier. Jung Sun has an interview and Won Joon will be in charge of the kitchen. The interview will take place at Good Soup. Won Joon is confident that he can hold down the fort.
Kyung asks Hyun Soo why she wrote episode 9 and sent it. After all, they’ve hired another writer. Hyun Soo keeps a good attitude and tells Kyung that she thought it over and figured that if she sent the script it might help the new writer. There’s nothing she can do about the way things have turned out, but at least she knows where the story is headed and that might be of help. Kyung compliments her for being such a good sport. Hong Ah shows up in a sour mood. She has come to pack her things. She isn’t going to stick around as an assistant writer. Kyung comments that she only won a contest but hasn’t been hired on as a writer anywhere yet. Hyun Soo already knows Hong Ah is touchy towards the situation about Jung Sun and tries to subdue the bad vibes in the office. Kyung can’t understand why Hong Ah is being so harsh. Hong Ah says no one can make her path happen but herself. In fact, she tells Kyung to come and write for her, isn’t it obvious that Hyun Soo will get fired? Kyung is shocked by Hong Ah’s brash attitude.
Hong Ah is ready to walk out, but Hyun Soo asks to talk. She is curious why she is so irritated. “Is Jung Sun the reason you’re being this way?” Hong Ah denies it. But if it is the reason, Hyun Soo tells her that she can understand that. Hong Ah tries to cover that she’s been rejected and is embarrassed and angrier than ever that Hyun Soo knows. Hyun Soo is stunned at her friend’s anger towards her, especially when Hong Ah spits out that, once again, Hyun Soo won (since it’s clear that Jung Sun likes Hyun Soo). But that won’t be the case any longer, a vindictive Hong Ah promises.
Jung Sun poses for pictures at Good Soup. The interviewer compliments him on the new feel that his food has. He invites her to stay for lunch. Won Joon does his best to run the kitchen. He assigns Min Ho to make the macadamia sauce. The kitchen is a hubbub of activity. Min Ho does his best, having watched others make the sauce before. Jung Sun steps into the kitchen to see how things are going. He asks Min Ho at what temperature he ground the macadamia nuts; his sauce is sticky and thick and it didn’t turn out right. Jung Sun doesn’t yell at Min Ho, but encourages him to ask questions next time. It’s not a bad thing, it shows that one is interested. Jung Sun is good at teaching and allowing for a learning curve, and he expects the staff to help one another. “The kitchen is where we all can expect to work happily,” he coaches. Respect for one another is mandatory! “Respect!” they all cheer.
No one but Kyung read the episode 9 script. Hyun Soo can’t do anymore than what she has already done to keep a stiff upper lip. She is about sinks into despair. But Kyung has made a reservation for them to eat out. Hyun Soo looks up and smiles, “You’re my lifesaver,” she tells Kyung.
Guess where they’re dining today – Good Soup! Kyung has succeeded in cheering up her friend. The kitchen is busier than ever. The hostess informs Jung Sun that writer Hyun Soo and guest have placed an order. When Jung Sun comes out and greets Hyun Soo, Kyung is confused. “Do you know each other?” she asks. Hyun Soo introduces Kyung as her assistant whom she adores. It doesn’t take Kyung a New York second to figure out that the two of them are more mere acquaintances and excuses herself on a business matter. Jung Sun is amused at her alertness. He invites Hyun Soo up to his place and makes her a nice cup of coffee. She inhales the aroma. “It’s Blue Mountain,” he comments, “too expensive for you to buy. It was a gift.”
He tells her that he is in listening mode today if she wants to talk. She heard from Hong Ah. He wants to know exactly what she said so there won’t be any misunderstanding. Hyun Soo wonders how Jung Sun can be so clear and firm. He sits next to her and tells her that he has to be; there isn’t anyone he can rely on if he falls. His life doesn’t allow for wavering. She feels uncomfortable that she is fighting Hong Ah over him. He tells her to give up on him, then. He can’t stand stirring up emotions and has always been clear with her. If Hyun Soo keeps going back and forth, then he can’t count on her feelings. He is scared. She pushed him away once, what’s to say that she won’t do it again? Hyun Soo is touched by his honesty and transparency. “Reality is always tough,” he says with a heavy tone. She reaches for his hand. “I was selfish,” she admits. Love requires two people and she only thought of herself. “I’ll think about it,” she says. Jung Sun looks both worried and hopeful.
Hong Ah marches into Jung Woo’s office. He congratulates her on winning the contest. She wants to work with him, but he informs her that the company that chose her script has a five-year contract on it. She wants to go with his company. He says he’ll think about it. “Have you read my script?” she asks. He says it’s a good, typical Cinderella and secret birth story that never grows old. She wants to sign a contract. Her condition: that she get paid more than Hyun Soo. Jung Woo is direct and tells her that isn’t going to happen. Hong Ah crosses the line and wonders if it’s because he likes her. Jung Woo quickly puts her in her place; if she wants to work with him then she will have to follow his rules. First, she will have to build trust in him. While he doesn’t have to explain to her why Hyun Soo makes what she does, he wants Hong Ah to understand that she has to prove herself. Hong An insists that her daily show is worth it, but he explains in a work-like manner that a show is judged by its viewership, not by the writer. Her boldness isn’t becoming on her this time.
Jung Woo gives Hyun Soo a call. He suggests they take a walk together. He wants to take her to the flower in the wall spot, but when they arrive, the flower isn’t there. “It’s dead?’ he asks, surprised. She smiles, and tells him that it’s done it’s job blooming, and has gone back into the wall for now. It will return in another season. She guesses his reasoning and smiles at his sincere attempt to cheer her up. “Someone just threw a bomb at me,” and you wanted me to see Champ (the flower) to tell me to ‘stay alive.'” She guessed his intention, he admits. He changes the subject and tells her that Hong Ah came to him with a piece and wants to sign a contract. She asks what he will do. He isn’t sure; he’s fifty-fifty. Half because her piece is fun and half because she has such a strong personality. Why is he worried about her personality, is he going to live with her, she teases? He grins, no. She tells him to handle it like he always does, then.
Hyun Soo looks up at the sky. “It’s very nice,” Jung Woo says as they gaze at the moon. She wants to ask him something, “I waver a lot, and I’m not serious enough, right?” He tells her that the person who told her that is speaking out of frustration and doesn’t know her. She thinks too much, too, especially about love. She should follow her heart and be realistic. Stop thinking about the man you can’t have and be realistic. “Your reality right now is me,” he tells her.
Jung Sun and Won Joon talk about the future of Good Soup. The new show “Star’s Favorite Dish” has to do well and get the word out. Won Joon says it will happen because Jung Sun is handsome and miserly. “How am I miserly?” asks a puzzled Jung Sun. Won Joon smiles at his friend and tells him that he is miserly about his feelings toward women. Jung Sun says that’s because he was raised by parents whose emotions were easily spent. “Moody people are tough,” Jung Sun sighs. Won Joon thinks he is being too tough on Hong Ah. This surprises Jung Sun since Won Joon likes her, so why would he be telling him to ease up on Hong Ah? “I don’t like her, I love her. So, I’m waiting,” a shy Won Joon admits. He actually hopes Jung Sun would be cruel to her, but then he would feel to bad for her. Jung Sun says she reminds him of his mother. People are funny creatures. They laugh at the truth and absurdity of it all. Together they cheer for Good Soup, “We have to do well. Succeed!”
The show is a success. Chef On Jun Sung is a favorite of star guest Lee Duel Lae and receives rave reviews. The social media goes crazy. “We need a Chef On in every family,” and similar comments are read out loud by the staff. They cheer for the future success of Good Soup.
Hyun Soo and Kwang watch episode 9 of “Unruly Detectives.” There is nothing left of what Hyun Soo wrote. Kyung tells her honestly that there were always other writers all along. “Just endure it,” she tells Hyun Soo. The show is in her name, no one will know. “I do,” Hyun Soo says and goes to talk with the producer. He says it is what it is. The show is still under her name and to just endure it. Things will be easier next time.
Hyun Soo runs out of frustration. She remembers her words, “When I become a writer I will dance in the middle of Yeouido.” Other scenes flash through her mind: Writer Park chewing her out, Director Min and the producer arguing in front of her calling her difficult, Jung Sun telling her she pushes the man who loves her away, Kyung telling her to endure it – it’s all too much and everything is crashing in on her.
Kyung and Jung Woo look at the ratings. She tells him that Hyun Soo didn’t write the episode 9 that aired. Sad to say, the ratings went up. Kyung asks if Hyun Soo will be fired. Jung Woo says she won’t because it’s still her story, but things are going to get tough for her. Kyung is at least glad to hear that she won’t be fired. When Joon Ha plops down next to her, she takes her frustration out on him. Their bickering makes Jung Woo grin. Joon Ha briefs Jung Woo on the situation: three ghost writers have replaced Hyun Soo. She can’t be fired unless she quits. If she hangs in there, she will get the glory for writing the show. Jung Woo scratches his forehead and sighs, “What’s the good of getting the glory when you’ve been ripped to pieces?”
Jung Woo rings Jung Sun’s doorbell and walks in. “Congratulations. People love you,” he says and grabs the beer from Jung Sun’s hand. Jung Woo compliments Jung Sun’s commercial value – people love him when he doesn’t even try. They laugh and toast. There’s a favor Jung Woo needs: he is going to propose. A shocked Jung Sun asks, “When? Who?” He is genuinely happy for Jung Woo who wants the event to take place at Good Soup.
Hyun Soo’s sister, niece, and parents stop in. They discuss the difficult situation that Hyun Soo is in with the show. It’s awkward, but they’ve come to eat with her and offer support.
Business at Good Soup is booming with Jun Sun’s success on the show. The chefs are busier than ever with reservations out for a week. It’s good news. They decide to celebrate later.
Hyun Soo washes dishes after her family has left. She recalls how her mom and niece cheered her on. Her father was supportive in his own way, telling her to do what she wants. She decides to go to the producer. “I’ll quit,” she tells him. He doesn’t want that. She just has to hang on. To what she asks? He tells her that she’ll regret giving up. But she thanks him and leaves, her mind is made up.
The person she thinks to call is Jung Sun. His words that he is afraid she will push him away again ring in her head. But he is playing soccer with his staff and doesn’t hear his phone.
With uncanny timing, Jung Woo calls her. He tells her to come to his office. News that she has quit has reached him already. She treats him like a boss, asking him to mete out her punishment quickly. Why does she expect that he’ll punish her, he asks? Because she didn’t last, she answers. He didn’t require that of her, did he? He is upset that she declined his help in every way. She wonders if he realizes how hard it is for her to accept herself that she has quit. How can she hang on when the writing isn’t hers? When the story isn’t the one she wanted to tell? When she isn’t good enough? She can see what happened – Director Min sent her signals that it wasn’t working but she wanted to debut so she ignored them. She wanted her parents to be proud that her name was on the screen. But now, she feels like if she holds on she wont’ be able to be true to herself.
Jung Woo isn’t concerned about the script or the drama at all. He draws close to her and places his hand on her cheek. She brushes it away. He takes her hand in his and gently looks into her eyes. Hyun Soo realizes that this is not a business moment but a romantic one . . .
- Hong Ah is a woman scorned and isn’t going to let anything go. I fear she will cause a relationshipwreck for others somehow some way. Won Joon is too good for her, by the way.
- So here are the triangles: #1: Hong Ah – Jung Sun – Hyun Soo; #2: Jung Sun – Hong Ah – Won Joon; #3: Jung Sun – Hyun Soo – Jung Woo. The thing I fear the most is the misunderstanding that is bound to occur between Jung Sun and Jung Woo that will kill the bromance. That would be a travesty, but could there be any other conclusion after they discover that they love the same woman?
- Now it will dawn on Hyun Soo that her rumored “boyfriend” is Jung Woo and she may be the one to disappear this time because of the bromance factor. I really love her character; her upbeat personality is refreshing because she remains grounded and doesn’t go overboard. She is what Jung Sun can never be because he has become a person who represses his emotions in order not to go overboard. Like magnets, they attract for their polar emotional personalities. Her emotions are all over the place in his view, but he likes that. And the truth is, she does allow for her emotions to come out, but she picks herself up with a spirit that others wonder where it comes from. Her sister, Jung Woo, Kyung, and Jung Sun see that in her. On the other hand, it drives Hong Ah crazy.
- It’s good to see Good Soup make a breakthrough. But can Hyun Soo and Jung Sun balance things when he is up and she is down? Does Korean culture allow for that?
- Once again, I’m torn by second-lead syndrome. That’s because Jung Woo is my style. I can see how others aren’t swayed because Jung Sun is such a great guy for Hyun Soo, but Jung Woo could give him a run for his money in my book. I love how he took Hyun Soo to “the little flower that could” spot. It is an omen that the flower has faded? Hyun Soo won’t be swayed his way; however I fear that his confession this time will make her run away for the k-drama sake of the business and friendship ties that he has with Jung Sun.
- And, what about her career? I wonder if she gave up too soon because the industry (and many other fields) has ups and downs and you have to weather the downs. Still, she’s been hit pretty hard and is stepping down for several reasons, not just defeat. Gosh, doesn’t Hyun Soo deserve to be okay?