Wok of Love Episode 3-4

Wok of Love Episode 3

Doo Chil Seong (Jang Hyuk) tells Dan Sae Woo (Jung Ryeo Won) not to marry tomorrow because divorcing is difficult. She scoffs and turns to leave. Chef Seo Poong (Lee Joon Ho) grabs her arm and tells her not to get married. He declares it is all a scam where the participant vow to love forever but they may not follow through. He offers to cook for her. She offers a fortune cookie quote in English that riles up the men. Sae Woo lights into Seo Poong for his lack of faith in marriage considering he was married just a month prior. She asks Chil Seong if he has personal experience with divorce. Sae Woo hands out invitations to her wedding and orders everyone to come tomorrow. She strides away from the speechless men. Chil Seong can’t help but be impressed.

I’m loving Sae Woo!

Seo Poong takes the opportunity to move away but Oh Maeng Dal (Jo Jae Yun) calls him back. Chil Seong tells Seo Poong to eat the food he ordered. Seo Poong refuses declaring he’s a chef at an established hotel. He offers to cook for Chil Seong and his gang whenever they come to the hotel.

Doctor Seok Dal Hee (Cha Joo Young), Seo Poong’s wife, rides up in an elevator.

CEO Yong Seung Ryong (Kim Sa Kwon) is interrupted during his workout by his assistant. He signs documents with a stylist between his toes. He asks his assistant about Seo Poong. He is assured the matter has been taken care of.

Seo Poong returns to the hotel with a blackened face and threats issued by Maeng Dal and the gang ringing in his ears. When he enters the dining room he sees Dal Hee. She’s surprised to see his face. He sighs and offers to cook for her.

The gang wonders what Seo Poong was about. Chil Seong sings to himself and considers attending the wedding. He ignores MP’s offer to throw away the wedding invitation.

Dal Hee ignore the offered food and tells Seo Poong divorce will be easy because they never registered their marriage. She’s moved out. She offers to take the responsibility for walking away. Seo Poong asks who the other man is. Dal Hee says that information won’t change their situation. Seo Poong declares he can’t give up on their relationship. He points out her dying father left her in his car. Dal Hee counter her father’s eatery always embarrassed her. She wishes she’d never married him. She apologizes. She leaves Seo Poong gutted.

Dal Hee is a cold fish. I don’t see much to like about her. Plus, I dislike the conciliatory man Seo Poong morphs into around her.

A lady picks up her dry cleaning.

From an airplane Sae Woo’s finance calls and asks her to pick up his suit for tomorrow’s wedding. Sae Woo offers one last chance to back out of the wedding. He smiles and refuses the offer. She warns him to never forget she offered. They coo and bid each other a good night.

 As she walks Chil Seong spots her and offer her a ride. She’s taken aback. He exits the car and shocks her by admitting that he’s fallen for her. When she isn’t receptive, he offers wishes for a happy life and leaves. Sae Woo can’t believe a virtual stranger has fallen for her, declared his feelings, and tomorrow is her wedding!

When Jang Hyuk whipped off his sunglasses, I would have melted. I loved his forthright declaration. I loved his confidence which underlying vulnerability. Of course, Sae Woo had to reject him, but what a boost to one’s ego to have a declaration from such a handsome man. Didn’t his long trench coat have a Matrix vibe?

Chil Seong drives away singing that he must have misinterpreted her initial smile.

Dal Hee arrives at CEO Yong’s hotel room. He’s clad only in a towel. She bemoans the only thing that is left is for Seo Poong to find them in the act. CEO Yong kisses her. They hear a noise. CEO Yong opens the door. A chef’s knife is embedded in the door.

Point taken Seo Poong!

The next morning Sae Woo leaves the house to run errands for the wedding.

Chil Seong has Gwang Dong Sik (Kim Hyun Joon) put up a going out of business sign. The old lady from other scenes demands to know how Chil Seong could do this without her permission. She tells him he’s wimping out. Chil Seong complains about her and she complains about their bad food. Both of them walk away.

The mystery woman (Lee Mi Sook) worries.

Im Geok Jung (Tae Hang Ho) goes to a bank to get check for a wedding gift.

The mystery woman buys condoms.

The next morning the kitchen staff goes up the elevator. Everyone eyes Seo Poong.

Flashbacks show Chef Wang getting other staff members (Bo Ra, Rae Yeon, Sam Sun) support him over Seo Poong. He senses something isn’t quite right. Seo Poong is pleased to celebrate promotions for staff members (Bo Ra, Rae Yeon, Sam Sun). He’s unhappy to learn his promotion comes with a transfer.

Chil Seong, CEO Yong are at the tailors when Sae Woo arrives to pick up her fiancé’s tuxedo. Chil Seong hides his face. But when Sae Woo is stopped by CEO Yong’s man as a suspect for shoplifting, Chil Seong intervenes. Sae Woo can’t believe he is there.

Seo Poong can’t believe his new assignment is cooking at the CEO’s vacation home that sees actions 3-4 times a year. Chef Wang itemizes Seo Poong’s infractions and declares a transfer represents kindness. He says Seo Poong’s arrogance has caught up with him. Seo Poong declares the eatery will fold without him. Chef Wang scoffs that everyone is replaceable. We see Sam Sun raid Seo Poong’s locker for an idea book. Seo Poong and Chef Wang stare at each other. Seo Poong says he wants to speak to the CEO. Does he know that the CEO is his wife’s lover?

Wok of Love Episode 4

CEO Yong isn’t impressed with Chil Seong identifies one of his security guards as a shoplifter. He tells his men to take care of Chil Seong while he strides out of the store. Chil Seong tells an impatient Sae Woo to go the dressing room. Chil Seong disarms CEO Yong’s security guards and promises Sae Woo he’ll wrap this up so she can get to the wedding. When Sae Woo enters the fray and Chil Seong guide her to the shoe store when she’s given the tuxedo. As CEO Yong and Sae Woo watch Chil Seong disarms CEO Yong’s security guards and proves one of his men was the culprit. Embarrassed CEO Yong glares at Chil Seong before apologizing to the wrongly accused employee. What about Sae Woo who was also detained? Chil Seong tells Sae Woo she better get going. He says she will stop appearing in his life from now on. Sae Woo agrees.

CEO Yong enters his hotel’s lobby and fires the thieving security guard. Chef Wang sidles up and says Seo Poong wants to meet with him. CEO Yong goes to the kitchen and orders everyone but Seo Poong to leave.

Seo Poong takes several wild swings at CEO Yong that miss the mark. CEO Yong hits Seo Poong the first try. CEO Yong taunts Seo Poong that his wife is love with him. CEO Yong guesses the Seo Poong put the chef’s knife in his hotel door last night. Seo Poong declares he won’t end it with his wife. He counters that CEO Yong has only been CEO for 3 months while he’s been a chef for 10 years, so CEO Yong should leave. When Seo Poong declares that CEO Yong doesn’t work hard like he does, CEO Yong hits him hard. A chain reaction of hot pots is set off.

CEO Yong is a jerk. Top management is untouchable while everyone else is expendable. A tough lesson to learn but it is true.

Sae Woo’s father takes her down the aisle for the wedding rehearsal. She waits for her fiancé to come down the aisle next.

Seo Poong exits the kitchen bloody with his signature wok and spoon. Chef Wang and the staff watch him leave.

Sae Woo’s fiancé doesn’t come down the aisle. The special prosecutor comes and arrests his father. We see Sae Woo’s fiancé’ being told to return to the plane. Sae Woo watches her father escorted away. She’s handed her phone. It’s the hospital calling to inform her she has terminal cancer.

Sae Woo’s life has turned on a dime with sufficient fodder to generate a country and western song.

Seo Poong leaves the hotel in his car. He sees Chil Seong’s empty eatery across the street. He drives to the bridge. He stares at the river and wonders where to go next. He yells his misery into the night. He blames himself and sags in pain.

One week later…

CEO Yong returns to his hotel room and asks why the knife is still in the door. Chef Wang offers to try and remove the knife that won’t budge. CEO Yong enters the room.

Seo Poong stares at the signs on Chil Seong’s eatery. He looks at the hotel across the street. He gets determined look on his face.

The hotel kitchen staff works hard under Chef Wang’s eagle eye.

Sae Woo’s doctor tells her the cancer has spread and she doesn’t have long to live. Sae Woo enumerate her miseries –  her finance ran, her dad’s in jail and now she’s near death.

Chil Seong’s men tell him someone is there to see him about a loan. The someone is Seo Poong. He asks why Chil Seong’s company is called light and shadow. Chil Seong explains they’ll shadow loaners until they get repaid. He advises Seo Poong not to get a loan from a gangster. Seo Poong not only wants money but Chil Seong’s eatery. He declares he’ll steal all the hotel’s customers to get his revenge. Chil Seong order his men to leave him alone with Seo Poong.

Chef Wang can’t get the knife out of the door. CEO Yong isn’t impressed.

Is the knife like the sword in the stone?

Chil Seong tells Seo Poong not to get a loan from a gangster. He says if he does, there are two conditions.

Chil Seong’s men wait outside the eatery. Sae Woo, wearing a fencing mask, walks up with her horse in tow. She asks for carrots. They don’t have any.

Chil Seong’s two conditions are that Seo Poong teach his men to cook and they become his kitchen staff. Seo Poong hates the idea. Chil Seong says unless he accepts both conditions, Seo Poong won’t achieve his revenge. Seo Poong agrees to Chil Seong’s conditions.

Chil Seong finds his men outside the eatery looking at the pile that Sae Woo’s horse left behind. Chil Seong shocks his men that Seo Poong will be the chef of the eatery and they will work for him.

Seo Poong enters the hotel’s kitchen. He asks Sam Sung to come for work him. He asks Bo Ra and Rae Yeon to work for him. They refuse. Chef Wang smirks. Seo Poong declares himself a fool and leaves taking his noodle lever with him. He tells Chef Wang he’ll never return. He snatches some fortune cookies before exiting the kitchen. Seo Poong takes one last look and leaves. He cries as he exits the hotel.

Back at the bridge he looks to river with grim determination. Sae Woo walks her horse across the bridge. Seo Poong watches her struggle to straddle the railing. She tells Seo Poong she’s not sure she’s going to kill herself. She tells Seo Poong the fencing mask protect her from life’s cruelty. Seo Poong shares that life’s uncertainties are scary. He suggests they eat a fortune cookie. Sae Woo takes a cookie. Seo Poong takes a cookie. They munch in companionable silence. They sigh. They stare over the railing. Seo Poong reads his fortune. Sae Woo asks what it was. Seo Poong asks her what her fortune is.

My Thoughts

What a difference an episode makes. This episode had more plot progress than setup. I now like our trio of leads. Each appeals to me in different ways. Seo Poong got knocked down and hit a low point in his life. Sae Woo got the wind knocked out of her sails and is teetering on the brink. Chil Seong decided to fold up shop, said goodbye to Sae Woo, then Seo Poong reentered his life wanting a loan and his eatery.  The camp was subdued, the characters don’t seem like strangers, and the plot points moved our trio forward.

Chef Seo Poong (Lee Joon Ho) lost his wife, his job, and his co-worker friends. Seo Poong was stronger this episode. I loved the knife in door (aka sword in the stone). Even though CEO Yong physically bested him, Seo Poong effectively aimed his barb of daddy’s boy that spends in his exercising in CEO Yong’s face. Frankly Seo Poong is better off without Dal Hee. What value is she? Little does he know that his co-workers sold him out to Chef Wang.  But it was Seo Poong’s decision to take revenge by opening his own eatery across the street from the hotel that was the star plot point of this episode. This is the catalyst for his rebirth and for Chil Seong to meet the promise to give his men the opportunity for a different kind of life.

Dan Sae Woo (Jung Ryeo Won) had a series of cruel blows hit her. Just before she married, her father was arrested, her finance left the country to avoid arrest, and Sae Woo learned she is dying from cancer. They say trouble comes in threes. These were all bitter pills, any one which could change a character’s direction. We knew something like this had to happen. Sae Woo couldn’t be happily married. That had to implode and it did. The cancer was the personal implosion that will make Sae Woo rethink herself. I liked the chemistry between Chil Seong and Sae Woo. It was softer and less awkward than the previous episode. The potential of Sae Woo and Chil Seong was hinted at. The question is will she be emotionally drawn to both Seo Poong and Chil Seong?

Doo Chil Seong (Jang Hyuk) took advantage of the opportunity to secure a better life for his men. He wasn’t averse to Seo Poong using his eatery to get revenge. He saw the possibility that Seo Poong could train his men for a new life in food service. Chil Seong was “too cool for school” when he destroyed CEO Yong’s men at the tailors. CEO Yong deserve to get bested as many times as possible. Chil Seong admitted some vulnerability to Sae Woo when he said he hoped they didn’t get see each other again. JH looks great in the shades and effectively uses this prop.

I rank these episodes (on a scale from 1-10) as very good. My episode ranking chart is below.

Asian drama fan. I watch and blog dramas on https://kjtamusings.wordpress.com/.

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Posted in Recaps, Wok of Love
7 comments on “Wok of Love Episode 3-4
  1. Lady G. says:

    I’m not 100% on board with this drama, but I’ll continue watching. I despise everyone in that hotel I want to see Seo Poong make a huge success of the restaurant with the (former) gangsters. Now I know why the show was originally titled “Greasy Melo” – The poor girl has terminal cancer. It’s not a joking matter, unless they plan to let her live through some miracle treatments. It’s kind of amazing how she reaches stage 4 lymphoma without any symptoms whatsoever. Unless we learn that she ignored the warnings, I don’t think the writers handled that aspect right. But it is still curable.


    • I despise everyone in that hotel I want to see Seo Poong make a huge success of the restaurant with the (former) gangsters.
      I can see Seo Poong training of Chil Seong’s men providing a chance for each them to standout a bit. I like that Chil Seong sought keep his goal of training his men to have a skill that they can use when they move away from the gang.

      Now I know why the show was originally titled “Greasy Melo” – The poor girl has terminal cancer.
      I wasn’t expecting the cancer. That qualifies as the Melodrama part of the equation. Sae Woo started out happy and bright now she faces her own mortality.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Lady G. says:

        I thought Chil Seong’s speech about desiring his men to go clean was very sweet and I’d wanted Seo Poong to say yes, but it was funny how he flat out said ‘no.’ He’s still in a phase that’s all about him, he’s not thinking of anyone else. But I look forward to seeing the dynamics of their relationship change and they become friends.


        • Agreed. The potential between these two is evident. I like the idea of Chil Seong’s wisdom rubbing off on Seo Poong. It would be great if each taught or helped the other. I am not looking for a mentoring situation that is one way.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Jane Tilly says:

    I concur Dal Hee is a cold fish 🐡. She knew she did NOT love 🚫💕 Seo Poong 👨‍🍳 before they got married … Dal Hee 🐡 did not even attempt to make the marriage work; why did she bother to marry Seo Poong 👨‍🍳❓⁉️ I also dislike Seo Poong turning into an appeaser around Dal Hee 🐡… she does NOT deserve him. CEO Yong is a pig 🐖 to get Seo Poong 👨‍🍳 out of the way by firing him. It was good to see Chil Seong 🕶️ beat CEO Yong’s 🐖 thugs singlehandedly … I hope we see this kind of whooping over and over again including a good whooping on CEO Yong 🐖.

    I was appalled at the duplicity of Seo Poong’s 👨‍🍳 colleagues while they acknowledged their promotions were due to him. I also want to see Seo Poong 👨‍🍳 succeed in his own restaurant endeavor and rub the success in BOTH of the faces 👥 of each of his duplicitous former colleagues; hopefully he 👨‍🍳 comes to the knowledge of their betrayal sooner rather than later. I was flabbergasted that his “friend” stole his recipe notebook 📓.

    Lady G, I agree Sae Woo 🤺 does not appear to be sick; I’m not sure she is the one with cancer … could the cancer patient is her mother who collapsed❓⁉️ Maybe I’m just being a wishful thinker to pin cancer on someone who is older and we don’t know yet … I don’t think we have seen the face of Sae Woo’s 🤺 mother … yet. It is a huge blow❗

    I wondered if Sae Woo’s 🤺 fiancé is the one who caused her father’s bankruptcy; it seemed fishy 🐠 that he insisted on registering their marriage before they had their ceremony 💒.

    Hyukie 🕶️ was looking good. I ❤️ that Chil Seong 🕶️ is looking out for his guys and facilitating them living legal lives. I think this drama has promise. Will there be a love triangle for our leads❓⁉️ There are many obstacles for Sae Woo 🤺 yo overcome yo be ready for romance 💕.
    I’m ready for a rom-com❗ I’m ALWAYS READY for Hyukie ❤️❗


    • Dal Hee…did NOT love 🚫💕 Seo Poong 👨‍🍳 before they got married …did not even attempt to make the marriage work; why did she bother to marry Seo Poong
      Yes, why didn’t she walk away? Even though Seo Poong is clinging to her, she could have brushed him off before walking down the aisle. Why does he cling to her when she doesn’t want him?

      CEO Yong is a pig 🐖 to get Seo Poong 👨‍🍳 out of the way by firing him. It was good to see Chil Seong 🕶 beat CEO Yong’s 🐖 thugs singlehandedly
      That was satisfying as well as Chil Seong exposing CEO Young’s security guard as the shoplifter that did protest too much.

      I was appalled at the duplicity of Seo Poong’s 👨‍🍳 colleagues while they acknowledged their promotions were due to him
      They threw him under a bus for their own personal gain. I’m not sure I want them to work with Seo Poong or have him forgive them easily. They imploded his work life, one that he was passionate about.

      Will there be a love triangle for our leads❓⁉ There are many obstacles for Sae Woo 🤺 yo overcome yo be ready for romance 💕.
      The only character that seems ready for love is Chil Seong. Seo Poong and Sae Woo are not. Will there be any romance?

      I ❤ that Chil Seong 🕶 is looking out for his guys and facilitating them living legal lives
      Such a sweet caring condition to demand!


  3. imberreader says:

    I will comment lengthier later on, but I THINK it is her mom that has the cancer, not her? Though the subs were not particularly clear on that.

    Like Jane, I was absolutely mad about Seo Poong’s coworkers whom he congratulated so wholeheartedly before even looking information about himself up, and how traitorously they grinned in his face. And when he came to ask them to work with him, I was so upset, I just predict they will come crawling back to him and I don’t think they truly deserve it.

    But, of course, I picked this drama up for Junho who moved to top of my favorite actor list after Just Between Lovers so I might be a little biased, haha. But even so, I see Seo Poong as someone who needs and hopefully will get a lot of growth.And I just can’t wait to see friendship between him and Chil Seong!!

    Meanwhile, I don’t think it’s so much about Seo Poong only thinking of himself like Lady G. said, but trying to think like a businessman with vengeance and having no-skill cooks could drag his restaurant down, so, of course, it’s additional risk he would initially say no to. But when you’re between rock and hard place… Again, can’t wait when he’ll be walking with the chef gang, not having them trail him.


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May 2018

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