Episode #9: “I said ‘I Love You’ a Hundred Times”
Episode 9 begins with boyfriend Nam Ha Jin (Sung Joon) visting the orphanage with An A Rim (Yoon Jin Yi). Ha Jin’s girlfriend Han Yeo Reum (Jung Yu Mi) is on a work-related day trip with ex-boyfriend Kang Tae Ha (Eric). Ha Jin and Yeo Reum are NOT forthcoming with each other about what they are doing that day. Ding dong! Do you hear their relationship sliding into the abyss?
When Yeo Reum and Tae Ha stop for lunch, he spots Ha Jin and A Rim shopping. He steers Yeo Reum away, so she does NOT see them. Tae Ha notices that Yeo Reum’s purse is the same purse he gave her years ago as a present from his first paycheck. He notes she told him she loved him more than 10 times that day (close to the title). She counters with the memory that he bought her a necklace with his first paycheck. The purse was an apology present after he stood her up 3 times. She continues that every time she sees him she thinks everything beautiful lasts only a moment, just like their relationship. Ouch! She really seems to enjoy verbal slams against him.
A Rim runs into Yeo Reum but neither is forthcoming with the other why they are there. They are downright cold with each other. A Rim also runs into Tae Ha. He directly asks who she is there with. A Rim lies that she is there by herself. She directly asks him who he is there with. Tae Ha does not respond. Yeo Reum guesses that Ha Jin might be with A Rim even calling Do Joon Ho (Yoon Hyun Min) to confirm that he is NOT at work. She decides NOT to confirm her suspicion.
Jung Mok asks Yoon Sol (Kim Seul Gi) out to the movies but immediately back tracks this is NOT a date. Yoon Sol agrees to go the movies with him. He is pleased (his stumbling awkwardness is sweet). Joon Ho gets an eyeful of Yoon Sol when he opens the door to her room while she is dressing. He comments that she does NOT need her breasts enhanced! She tells him she is going to see a movie. Joon Ho is miffed that she is going without him. She tells him come with her. At the movies she sits in the middle between Jung Mok and Joon Ho. Neither man looks happy that the other is there.
Flip to interview mode:
Joon Ho: Guys check each other out.
Jung Mok: Guys compare themselves to each other to see how they rank.
Yeo Reum obsesses about how Ha Jin was planning to be with A Rim but did not say anything that morning. She asks Tae Ha to stop the car. As they stand together she asks him if he saw Ha Jin at the shopping mall. Tae Ha denies seeing him. She asks him why is he protecting him. Tae Ha says he wants to play fair and will not confirm he saw Ha Jin. She admits she is uncertain about her relationship. She states she saw A Rim at the shopping mall. Tae Ha notes she is not being truthful with Ha Jin about their dating history. He decides to put her mind at ease. He tells her that when he drank with Ha Jin, he told him that Yeo Reum was the only girl for him and nothing was going on with A Rim. That shatters her assumption that Tae Ha only thinks about himself. Tae Ha encourages her to find out why A Rim is important to Ha Jin and stop being suspicious without facts. He tells her HE would not hide something like that from her because he is cool. Love the finger wag he gives her. That earns a smile from Yeo Reum. He is cute!
The non-date continues at the coffee shop. Joon Ho and Yoon Sol spot Choi Eun Gyu (Gu Won) with his girlfriend. His girlfriend is berating him for using a coupon and being cheap. Yoon Sol goes to their table and tells the girlfriend that Eun Gyu is frugal to save money for a house, or help others, and if she does not know this about her boyfriend, then she is clueless. Wow, that was a direct and passionate defense of Eun Gyu! Joon Ho and Jung Mok are impressed with Yoon Sol. Junk Mok sees her in a golden light as he falls for her. Then Joon Ho’s heart beats fast when he looks at her and sees her in the golden light as he falls for her too. She shames the girlfriend into leaving. She apologizes to Eun Gyu for being blunt. He grabs her wrist and tells her he is sorry and he is thankful too. She pulls away from his grasp and leaves.
She returns to Joon Ho and Jung Mok, sips her latte, and foam remains on her lip. The song “That Man” from Secret Garden swells (recall Secret Garden has the iconic foam on the lip scene). Too funny! Both men stare at her transfixed. Perfect insertion of a kdrama cliche scene, just perfect!
At the orphanage, Ha Jin and A Rim get out of the car and breathe in. A Rim comments that it smells like home. Ha Jin agrees. The children cluster around A Rim. It is obvious she is well loved. Ha Jin meets the boy he will perform the surgery on. He plays soccer with the children. One of the children gets a scratch and Ha Jin tends the wound. A Rim flashes back to her orphanage brother tending to her wound when she was young.
Meanwhile, at the wood factory, Yeo Reum is respectful of the wood impressing their factory guide. As they leave, Tae Ha admits memories of their past are precious to him now. Yeo Reum says her memory of her fight with Ha Jin is precious. Tae Ha tells her she has to break up with Ha Jin for the memory to qualify as a precious past memory. As they drive back, Tae Ha sees a fishing spot they went to with her father. He stops the car and views the lake. She stays in the car and flashes back. When Tae Ha returns to the car he sees she is upset. She tells him to drive away which he does. He is confused why she is upset. She offers no explanation. He thinks back to his last time with her father. Her father advised him to be kind to Yeo Reum and support her even when she was prickly. Back then Tae Ha joked with her father that he would be there to help him out. Her father was noncommittal to that statement. Hmmm, was the father planning on deserting his wife and daughter? Tae Ha is distracted and almost runs into a barrier. Yeo Reum opens her eyes, sees the barrier, and flashes back to her father hanging by a rope. Ah, suicide, that would certainly scar you. Tae Ha stops the car before hitting the barrier. Yeo Reum looks like she has passed out. Tae Ha cannot rouse her.
Yeo Reum’s mother and Min Soo visit Yeo Reum’s father’s marker. Yeo Reum’s mother frets that while Yeo Reum appears ok, she worries about her. Min Soo comments it was awful that Yeo Reum’s father died without providing a reason. Yeo Reum’s mother says she should have let him leave her when he wanted to but she clung to him creating the situation.
At the emergency room, the doctor tells Tae Ha that Yeo Reum had a stress related incident that left her unconscious. The doctor asks if Tae Ha knows what triggered the incident. As he watches her sleep he recalls her challenge for him to remember when she called him for his support (when her father died) but he was too busy. He then flashes back to the numerous times she did call him crying but either he was too busy or put her off. The guilt over his past treatment of her floods Tae Ha. He thinks to himself, what was I thinking, I told her I loved her a hundred times (title of the show), but I did not know what love was. Tears of regret come.
At the orphanage, Ha Jin and A Rim eat dinner with the children. The children ask them to spend the night. A Rim whispers that Ha Jin should agree and they will sneak out after the children fall asleep. Ha Jin asks A Rim if she blames her brother for leaving her at the orphanage. A Rim says he was NOT her biological brother (ah, that clears up that mystery why she called him brother). She does not remember her mother or father so her orphanage brother was her only family and she missed him terribly when he left the orphanage. Ha Jin says her brother must have felt guilty for leaving her. She says he left when he was 12 and she was 7. She tries to cry without sound as the loneliness of the past washes over her. Ha Jin suppresses his tears.
When Yeo Reum wakes Tae Ha explains she had a stress incident after he took her to the fishing hole. He ruefully says he did not listen to her now or then.
Joon Ho listens to his heart at home. The beat count is normal. He sits across from Yoon Sol who is shoveling in food as she is upset over seeing Eun Gyu. She yells at Joon Ho to leave her alone (similar to how she yelled earlier at the coffee shop). Joon Ho’s heart rate increases much to his horror.
Tae Ha calls Yoon Sol that he is bringing Yeo Reum home in 30 minutes and that she is not feeling well.
Ha Jin drops off A Rim and the little boy. He tells the boy to eat well tomorrow so he is strong for the surgery the next day. The boy invites him to have lunch with him and A Rim tomorrow. Ha Jin agrees to come tomorrow at noon.
Tae Ha helps Yeo Reum out of the car at her house. They slowly make their way to the house. Ha Jin drives up and spots Tae Ha’s arm around Yeo Reum. He gets out of his car and glares at them. Yoon Sol and Joon Ho come out of the house asking Tae Ha what he did to Yeo Reum, she was fine this morning. They turn and see Ha Jin. He strides toward them looking like he will give Tae Ha a piece of his mind and possibly his fist too.
* This was a quiet episode. The fun story switched to Yoon Sol and her merry men admirers, Joon Ho and Jung Mok. The foursome of Yeo Reum, Tae Ha, Ha Jin and A Rim all bonded with each other, lied to each other, and continued make their relationships muddy and unclear as they migrate to and from each other. The last 2 episodes the pace has been slower. Not that the episode is not written or produced well, but the pace makes the story line progress seem slow. When I think of all this episode revealed, there was progression, but it FELT slower to me. I do not know if I am explaining myself clearly, but there it is.
* How much did Subway paid the show to be featured? There are lots of Subway sandwiches are being consumed in this show.
*I like the interview of Joon Ho and Jung Mok as they sized each other up at the movie theater.
* The car almost running into the barrier was oddly produced. I do not believe that Tae Ha would shield Yeo Reum while almost running into the barrier. I think he would grip the steering wheel and brake for all he was worth.
* Major updates of the mysteries in this episode.
1. What is the deal with Yeo Reum’s father’s death? It looks like he committed suicide by hanging and Yeo Reum found him.
2. What is the deal with Ha Jin and A Rim’s past? It appears they were like brother and sister at the orphanage (but NOT related by blood). Ha Jin was adopted when he was 12 leaving 7 year old A Rim behind at the orphanage. He feels guilty and she feels the loss of her brother even after all these years.
* Eric evoked sympathy in his portrayal of Tae Ha. When Tae Ha realized that he HAD ignored Yeo Reum’s calls for his help after his father’s death, the guilt and subsequent tears felt real. He was cute when he suggested he was cool and Yeo Reum should break up with Ha Jin. I also liked the way he refused to admit that he saw Ha Jin at the shopping mall, not wanting to tattle on her boyfriend. Interesting that he and Yeo Reum remember the purse / necklace gift differently. Which one is correct?
* Jung Yu Mi’s character Yeo Reum flashed back to the painful memory of finding her father hanging from a rope. That would scar you. Her reaction to the memory that sent her into unconsciousness did not seem unreasonable. Her snippy interchange to A Rim at the shopping mall was good. I liked how she figured out that Ha Jin was likely with A Rim. Unfortunately she did not really want to know if her suspicions were correct and decided NOT to confront him. This is another indication that her relationship with Ha Jin is not healthy.
* Sung Joon portrayed Ha Jin’s guilt and sorrow over leaving A Rim behind at the orphanage well. I still do not understand why he will not reveal himself. He left A Rim when he was 12. She says she understands his decision and would have chosen to leave the orphanage if she had the opportunity. So why does he continue to keep his identity a secret? Why does his mother not want his origin known?
* Yoon Sol was the star of the show for me this episode. The way she stood up for Eun Gyu to his girlfriend was full of conviction about the good man Eun Gyu is. Her enjoyment at having 2 men vie for her attention was fun. The foam on the lip and the reference to Secret Garden, well produced and a clever reference to a famous cliche scene.
* Do Joon Ho’s unexpected view of Yoon Sol breasts and then his reaction was excellent. The actor, Yoon Hyun Min, has the ability to have big facial expressions without overdoing it. That is a tricky balance and he does it well. His realization that he was starting to see her in another light (literally) was funny. He is not swooning when he sees Yoon Sol but he is affected by her presence (increased heart rate). Love is on the way. Will she reciprocate?
* An A Rim’s acceptance at Ha Jin’s actions, leaving her at the orphanage when he was adopted, was without blame. I did like her spirited sniping with Yeo Reum and Tae Ha. Her admission to the Nun at the orphanage that she liked Ha Jin but would keep it to herself, made me wonder if she could continue to do that as she is more and more drawn to the good doctor.