Open Thread: Secret Love Affair Episodes 11 & 12

Welcome to the Open Thread, everyone! I had to have this iconic scene headline our post today; it’s such a rare moment of respite, for Hye Won and Sun Jae.

Here are our usual ground rules, before we begin:

1. Please don’t post spoilers in the Open Thread, except for events that have happened in the show, up to this point. If you really need to talk about a spoiler, it is possible to use the new spoiler tags, but please know that spoilers are still visible (ie, not hidden) in the email notification that you receive, of the comment in question. We have quite a few first-time viewers among us, and we don’t want to spoil anything for anyone.

2. Discussions on this thread don’t have to close when newer threads open, just so you know! But as we progress through our group watch, please keep the discussions clear of spoilers from future episodes, so that future readers coming to this thread won’t be accidentally spoiled. Does that make sense?

Without further ado, here are my reactions to this set of episodes; have fun in the Open Thread, everyone! ❤️

Secret Love Affair OST – Book

In case you’d like to soak in the music as you read the episode notes, here’s Book again, which I feel features rather prominently, this set of episodes.

Just right-click on the video and select “Loop.”

My thoughts

Episode 11

At this point in our story, Hye Won and Sun Jae are coming to a moment of reckoning, and it’s hard to watch. It feels like the entire world is closing down on them, while they are both trapped, in their own corners, separated from each other.

This episode, the thing that I feel the most keenly, is Sun Jae’s loss of innocence, because of his relationship with Hye Won. In Sun Jae’s opening voiceover alone, as he ponders everything, while sitting at the window in his home, the sense of plaintive helplessness that he feels, is so clear:

“I never thought that my window was small up until now. But, it looks really small today. There’s so much that I don’t know. You were bowing to a car in the middle of a night. But I could only hide and watch. A big house with high walls. People in suits. I was scared because I had never seen anything like it.”

He sounds so young in this voiceover, doesn’t he? It reminds me all over again, that Sun Jae’s only 19, and completely inexperienced in the ways of the world; at least, the ways of the world in which Hye Won lives. And while his relationship with Hye Won has brought him a great deal of joy in its own way, the price – of his innocence – seems quite high, to my eyes.

It’s a little startling, that this episode, we realize that everyone around Hye Won either already knows about her relationship with Sun Jae, or has deep suspicions to that effect. The thing is, up to this point, no one’s really confronted Hye Won in the traditional sense of the word. Everyone’s just made their observations, and adjusted their approach accordingly.

It feels like quietly, while Hye Won wasn’t looking, the entire world’s turned against her and is targeting her relationship with Sun Jae. It’s quite unsettling to witness, honestly.

Of course, Professor Jo, being a longtime friend of Hye Won, doesn’t turn against her. It’s just that I felt a little thrown by how matter-of-factly Professor Jo refers to Sun Jae’s relationship with Hye Won. “Liking someone doesn’t mean you have to know everything about her. We try to understand everything. Right now, she is one of the 24 pieces you played last night. The picture in there is the theme song.”

I suppose it really is as Lane said, in her comment on the last Open Thread, that this being a music university, everyone who’s worth their salt would likely have understood what Sun Jae had meant, in choosing the Brahms Intermezzo as his encore piece.

Aside from Professor Jo, and later, his wife Ji Soo, however, everyone else seems either out to drag down Hye Won, or stop the relationship, or.. just sit back to gloat over how the rich and powerful fall.

Young Woo’s snooping around to find evidence of the relationship, even getting her toy boy lover to get information out of Jang Ho, while she herself tries to pry information out of the fortune teller whom Joon Hyung visited; Madam Han’s personally snooping around by testing Da Mi, at the tipoff from Madam Baek; even Young Woo’s driver tries to blackmail Hye Won via text message. Plus, the secretaries and all the other staff appear to be gossiping about it as well. It’s all very unsavory, dog-eat-dog sort of stuff.

And in the midst of it all, Sun Jae strives to be the shelter that Hye Won needs, even though he, too, is powerless. I think it says a lot that Hye Won sneaks out of Chairman Seo’s house, to “get a breath of fresh air,” even though she’s already in a precarious situation, and any suspicious moves on her part, wouldn’t do her any good. Yet, she can’t help herself; when Sun Jae texts to tell her that he’s nearby, she can’t stop herself from going out to see him, even if it means undertaking even more risk.

What I do notice, though, is that while Hye Won would have tried to keep her true feelings from Sun Jae in the past, now, the moment she sees him, she tells him that she was out of her mind. She says it in such a matter-of-fact manner, and the words come so easily to her lips, that it really reminds me of just how much Hye Won has removed her mask, in front of Sun Jae.

No wonder she’d saved Sun Jae as “Home,” in her second, privately held mobile. Home is where the heart is – and also, home is where we feel most comfortable. In both of these senses, Sun Jae is home to Hye Won.

I appreciate that Sun Jae urges Hye Won to put down everything and run away with him. Up to this point in our story, Hye Won hasn’t ever seemed to entertain any other option, but to stay and face the unpleasantness, and fight this fight. It feels quite refreshing, actually, to see Sun Jae be the one to tell Hye Won that Hannam-dong isn’t the universe. Sure, Sun Jae’s suggestion may not be practical to Hye Won’s ears, but I just like the idea that Hye Won has a choice; that she doesn’t have to fight this fight, if she doesn’t want to.

Even Jang Ho and Da Mi visit Sun Jae, to tell him to stay away from Hye Won for a while. Both of them are from Sun Jae’s world, rather than from Hye Won’s, and still, this is their perspective, and their strong advice to Sun Jae. It really does seem like no one is on Sun Jae and Hye Won’s side.

What I find interesting, is how Sun Jae chooses to respond to Da Mi and Jang Ho, after hearing their advice. He doesn’t answer them in words; he answers them with his music – their music, since he uses the piano accompaniment played by Hye Won.

Essentially, in not so many words, it feels like he’s showing Da Mi and Jang Ho, at a very visceral level, just what he has with Hye Won. And the transcendental nature of the music moves even Da Mi and Jang Ho to tears, even though neither of them claims to know music. And it’s immediately after being moved by this music, that Da Mi and Jang Ho leave Sun Jae’s home, essentially retreating from their mission – at least for a while.

This scene feels powerful to me, because it feels like a statement of how the connection between Hye Won and Sun Jae, is so transcendent, that even reason has to withdraw, in the face of its beauty.

At the same time, through all of this, the way Sun Jae and Hye Won continue to miss each other, is clear to see. The way Sun Jae seems out of sorts, whether he’s taken to his bed, or working to keep to a normal routine, tells me that he’s suffering from heartache, through it all.

And then there’s Hye Won’s conversation with Ji Soo in the car, which is so brilliantly done. I am grateful that Ji Soo is kind and non-judgmental, even though she knows about Hye Won’s relationship with Sun Jae. And, my heart can’t help but go out to Hye Won, as her well-practiced facade of fine-ness gives way to tears.

What strikes me, is just how much Hye Won crumples, in the face of her true emotions. All this time, she’s put up a strong and brave front, telling Sun Jae that she’s sly and manipulative, and basically will be able to handle all these crafty people who are closing in on them. But in this moment, with her best friend, she breaks down as she admits that even in the face of all this, she can’t stop missing Sun Jae. Oof. It’s hard to see Hye Won like this. 💔

Episode 12

I feel like this screenshot sums up a large part of the foundation of this episode; Joon Hyung trying to either reason with or corner Hye Won, while Hye Won tries to avoid it. It’s kind of excruciating to watch, honestly, although there is some momentary reprieve.

I believe that Joon Hyung means it, when he tells Hye Won that he doesn’t want a divorce; that it basically wouldn’t be acceptable, given his family background. At the same time, it’s interesting to see that Joon Hyung eventually hires a private investigator to tail Hye Won and gather evidence of her infidelity.

At first glance, this seems to contradict his statement, that he doesn’t want to divorce Hye Won, because most of the time, such evidence of infidelity is used in divorce lawsuits. It feels like Joon Hyung’s simply at his wits’ end with Hye Won, because she keeps dodging him when he tries to reason with her on this issue.

On the one hand, it could be that Joon Hyung’s so exasperated and provoked, that he’s changed his mind and has decided to prove her infidelity and divorce her. On the other hand (which I personally think is more likely), it’s also possible that Joon Hyung’s planning to use this evidence as leverage against her – not to divorce her, but to get her to do what he wants, in terms of keeping up their show marriage.

At the same time, both Chairman Seo and Madam Han are putting pressure on Hye Won, to secure her undivided loyalty, and I feel like Hye Won’s basically trying to avoid making a commitment to either of them. Chairman Seo can’t do anything about it, since he’s being held in custody, but you can bet your last dollar, that Madam Han’s not going to just sit there and take it, while Hye Won hedges.

I feel like through all of this, Hye Won’s efforts to get Sun Jae to leave for Germany are much like how, in action thrillers, when one character is stuck in a life or death situation, they urge their companion to get out while they can. I think it’s getting to a point where Hye Won’s not so sure anymore, that she’ll be able to get out of this situation unscathed, but she wants to secure Sun Jae’s safety and future, while she still can.

Unfortunately, Joon Hyung seeing Sun Jae’s repeated visits with Professor Jo, doesn’t help the situation at all. I think it just makes Joon Hyung more angry than ever, because Sun Jae is supposed to be his student; the protégé who’s finally going to prove Joon Hyung’s worth in competition with Professor Jo. And, instead of Joon Hyung, Sun Jae’s gravitating towards Professor Jo, in Hye Won’s absence. At least, that’s how it’d likely look, from Joon Hyung’s point of view.

Speaking of which, I thought that scene, of Joon Hyung looking through the glass panel of the door, was a great echo of the scenes of Sun Jae looking in on Hye Won’s world from afar. Joon Hyung may be part of Hye Won’s world, but he’s never truly felt part of the world of the genuinely passionate or talented. This is him, looking in from afar, into a world where he wants to belong, but cannot.

Given Hye Won’s increasingly delicate circumstances, it really does feel like a reckless move, for her to go to Sun Jae’s neighborhood, and eat at the restaurant that he frequents, and then subsequently skip town with him, for what seems to be a spontaneous getaway.

From what I can tell, Hye Won finds it increasingly suffocating to exist in her world, particularly with everyone bearing down on her, and she keeps feeling the need for “fresh air.” That’s what she keeps using as an excuse, when she refers to her meet-ups with Sun Jae. However, I do think that it’s becoming quite literal, for Hye Won. She feels most able to breathe, when she’s with Sun Jae, even when her whole world is threatening to implode on itself.

I do love the scene at the restaurant, where Sun Jae doesn’t say much at all, but simply sits down with her, to share her meal. The look of joy and contentment on Sun Jae’s face is a delight. It’s honestly sweet, that something so simple – sharing a meal with Hye Won – can bring him so much happiness.

I imagine that Hye Won skipping town with Sun Jae on the bus, is her concession to his invitation to essentially run away with him.

It’s nice to see that, given some time, the stress of the “real world” eventually melts away from Hye Won, and she begins to relax, during her time away with Sun Jae.

However, the wounds and regrets are deep, it seems, from the way she tears up while listening to Billy Joel’s Piano Man. It feels like listening to that song takes her right back to her college days, and dredges up a whole range of emotions.

I feel like part of it is Hye Won reacting to the lyrics, which lean poignantly meaningful, like “I’m sure that I could be a movie star if I could get out of this place,” and “They’re sharing a drink they call loneliness, but it’s better than drinkin’ alone.” These lines in particular make me feel like Hye Won could be thinking about the loneliness that her life entails, and what her life might be like, if she could leave her current life.

On top of this, I think there’s also the whole dynamic, of thinking back to her youth, when she hadn’t yet gotten sucked into the world of the rich and powerful. I feel like she’s probably also overcome with emotion, at the thought of what her life might be like now, if she’d made different choices, back then.

It’s all very plaintive and emotional, and Kim Hee Ae kills it, in showing us such a wide yet restrained range of emotion, on Hye Won’s face, as she listens to the song.

Judging from Sun Jae’s reaction, when he reminds Hye Won that she does have a choice, it feels like Sun Jae is tuned in to all of this going on in Hye Won’s heart and mind, even though she doesn’t spell it out for him in so many words. Ahh. These two really are soulmates, aren’t they, for Sun Jae to understand where Hye Won’s heart is at, even though she doesn’t tell him?

It’s also nice to see Hye Won and Sun Jae enjoy a casual, laidback breakfast at the eatery in the village, and I do get a bit of a thrill at Sun Jae’s bold answer to the ahjumma, that Hye Won isn’t his aunt or mother; that they’re a couple.

And while it seems like a faint possibility, there’s definitely a romanticism to Sun Jae’s boldness, in sending out his resume to all the well-known piano teachers, and asking them to take him in, along with his girlfriend.

Even though the likelihood of any of them actually making Sun Jae an offer is dismally slim, there’s something assuring about the fact that Sun Jae really is doing everything in his power to protect Hye Won, and find a way for them to both leave Seohan, and be together elsewhere. He is as serious about Hye Won as he says he is, and he’s putting his words into action, and that.. is heart-wobbling stuff, honestly.

At the same time, it makes me uneasy to see the private investigator going so far as to use a lint roller on their bedding, in order to pick up DNA samples. Yikes. Joon Hyung isn’t playing around, and this makes me nervous for Hye Won.

The other sign that Joon Hyung isn’t playing around, is the way he asks to speak with Hye Won, when she gets home that night. It’s clear that he’s teetering on the edge, because it honestly doesn’t take much, before he explodes.

I feel like if Hye Won’s feelings hadn’t been so invested, and she’d therefore had the capacity to be more shrewd about things, she would have been able to manage Joon Hyung better. After all, she’s managed his tantrums and volatility for years, before Sun Jae came into the picture. But with her heart completely clouded with Sun Jae, I feel that Hye Won has become increasingly clouded in her thinking.

It’s heartwrenching to see how miserable both Hye Won and Sun Jae are, back in their places, both missing each other acutely. The way Sun Jae sobs into his pillow in the dark, after musing that he feels like he’s left his bride in someone else’s room, after his honeymoon, is so tortured and so full of anguish. 💔

However, it feels like there’s no time nor room for languishing in melancholy. Not only is Madam Han pushing Hye Won for evidence of the loyalty she’s asked for, Da Mi’s shown up at Hye Won’s office, to talk specifically about Sun Jae.

It just feels like one thing after another, for Hye Won, doesn’t it? It’s little wonder that she finds it increasingly hard to breathe.

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Georgia Peach
5 days ago

have loved reading everyone’s observations on these episodes. it’s amazing what a second watch has brought for me. it was niggling at me during the first watch, but being so awed by the awesomeness of YAI and his performance and the chemistry he had with Kim HeeAe..to say nothing of her performance…i have come to realize this is HyeWon’s story and SunJae is the catalyst for her to find out where she has gotten herself..and that’s in a very bad fix. she has certainly been used and abused by these people and she’d gotten used to the’ whipping post’. to use a term from BE…she was living with ‘bloodless’ people all around her. and then this Boy comes into her life…the stage is set for her to break away from her whipping post. Sunjae is just all about loving/protecting her. i guess we’ve all been saying this in a number of different ways. i marvel at how pd-nim and writer-nim have so carefully and meticulously plotted this out for us.( *wishing more dramas were as carefully written and directed*.)

my favorite two scenes in these episodes are..the stealing away scene and the breakfast get away scene. the first one i liked because of the way they had to pick their way through the rubble of the building to find a place of respite. such an excellent metaphor for their relationship…treacherous as they pick their way through the rubble of the abandoned building.. then to find themselves in the open space where they can share time. and SunJae’s unabashed answer to the restaurant adjumma’s question…’We’re a couple!” oh, the candor of untainted youth. who could question the affection SunJae has for his goddess?

note to BE…thank you for your comments starting with: My thought…difference between reality and appearances. totally agree. and, ya’ll, i’m lovin’ the Billy Joel. little did HyeWon know that her ‘piano man’ would appear so many years later and so radically change her life. but, oh, the sadness of unrealized dreams this song congures for HyeWon. would SunJae have also cried if he’d known the words?

yes. thanksgiving week here in usa…busy, but looking forward to the time when everyone is gone and the house gets quite to watch 13/14.

Lane
Lane
3 days ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

Happy Thanksgiving Georgia Peach and to everybody who celebrates!

Georgia Peach
2 days ago
Reply to  Lane

thanks, Lane, it was a good. good day

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BE
BE
6 days ago

Ridiculous for me to apologize again, but such is my life these days. I am gratified to see a more vigorous response to these two episodes than the previous two, although I guess that goes to show just how much tightening the screws achieves, and then, of course, there is the piano man song, which seems so aptly chosen. Perfect for the scene Hye Won recalls in which it was played, and that it is about a piano player. Not to mention that it was an antique when Hye Won was going to university, a hit before Seon Jae’s mother was born! Which also might give some information about the kind of joint she waited out Young Woo’s shenanigans back in the day in the USA, where just listen to that back story about her graduate school career, Hye Won already had it going on.

My big thought from these two episodes is the theme of the difference between appearance and reality. We the audience, like KFG, see what we see of Hye Won and Seon Jae, and yet every other character in the story, with perhaps the exception of Jo In Soo, have no real clear understanding of what has happened between Hye Won and Seon Jae or who they are becoming each of themselves, seeing only the lurid (interesting that the front ad for show seems to emphasize that as well as the show title), as if Young Woo’s extreme skepticism about human nature were actually the truth of the matter, while at the same time, the social mores and morals contain an implacable indictment as a result. And even Jo In Soo does not see what Seon Jae quite clearly sees: Hye Won is in trouble. This is not a matter of trusting her choices, or having her back. She is in trouble. And everyone’s take in the runaround of the Seohan Cheobol is similarly riddled with delusions, all of which leading to this hair on end tension our otp face, the runaround so complex in this case even we the audience are hard pressed to say exactly wtf is going on. All we know is everyone is after Hye Won’s hide.

There is an opening line in one of Hamlet’s soliloquy’s that to me hit Hye Won’s predicament on the head–“How all occasions do inform against me…” And nothing so much, nor so poignantly struck that home to me than when she reads Seon Jae’s plaint to his e-“hyung,” that he has just had his honey moon with the love of his life and left her off at some punk’s bed. On top of everything else, Hye Won loves–l-o-o-v-es–this kid, and she knows, feels it, she has just tore him up inside. Show is kind of like the piece of music Seon Jae played for Da Mi and Jang Ho…”is it supposed to be that sad?” “It will cut your heart out.”

I loved the scene in which they eat together in the little rice and sides joint where his mother used to cook. No need to talk, just to eat and be with one another–of all the scenes so far, that scene to me suggested the depth of their intimacy with one another. Just so comfortable and comforting, Hye Won bathing without having to do anything for him in his relish of her, his relish of the simple sharing of food. Just a terrific scene. How many times and in how many ways can one say: Yoo Ah In, Kim Hee Ae–you can tell me that there is a better enacted otp in K dramaland; you’d have to spend hours and hours proving it to me. Those two, alone and with one another. In the world of their drama, they are all alone, but the audience, we, we cannot stop rooting for them.

I do think as I stated in the post responding to the previous pair of episodes that it is important to not only see the crux of the plot as how their pure, soulful love, can survive in such a corrupt world, that is to see show from the perspective of the two of them involved with one another, it is also helpful to see the story of them as two separate individuals. Hye Won is someone who is coming to grips with a real, no bs, midlife crisis in which everything she has done from the time she was a graduate student in the US to the present has been in service of her ambition, whatever that took, whatever slime she had to bathe herself in and now it has all come into the filthy light because of the cheobol itself festering into a boil and more importantly, her encounter with this sweet hearted, talented beyond her belief young man. And for Seon Jae, the oldest story in the book, the naif, the innocent, the pure youth, young male energy in all its fecund glory, inevitably alloyed by the sewage of grown up reality, him stupefied feeling it for the first time consciously. It is as if show writers had these two interesting characters in mind from the get go and thought what forge can we place them in to temper. What will happen to these two if we set a chain of events off in this milieu–ah our story to this point.

The ideas are so strong in this show, the main characters so compelling, the story so romantic and yet conflicted on a high tension wire, and the execution so strong; show is simply episode after episode a tour de force. Again one can speak of how the musical themes enhance every scene, especially as the tensions rise, how the camera compositions and costume design (my goodness the contrast between Hye Won’s clothing and Seon Jae’s as a starting point–“she was rich girl, don’t try to hide it/ don’t try to hide it/diamonds on the soles of her shoes./ He was a poor boy, empty as a pocket/ empty as a pocket/ with nothing to lose.”) continuously inform the audience of substance. h
How every little thing is brought to the table–Hye Won confessing to Seon Jae that part of going to the tourist town restaurant away from the resort publicly for breakfast was in part because she wanted their love out in the open, or how Kim Chang Wan as Dean Min, proving there is no such thing as a small role, is so deliciously bloodless in every scene in which he shows up, Gil Hae Yun (I believe this role must have been the convincer for the casting director of Beyond Evil) portraying Teacher Baek projects a particular kind of scumball, white collar crook, all teeth and conniving–detail after detail after detail.

Have I posted yet in this set–I just love this show, simply a breathtaking homage to making art (even of a popular entertainment). Bravo one more time, and it won’t be the last.

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
6 days ago
Reply to  BE

Nice use of the Paul Simon quote there.

Yes, one never knows what will happen when you find yourself in thrall of a full-blown midlife crisis. It’s like being a hormone-driven teenager all over again. Except with adult consequences.

J3ffc
J3ffc
5 days ago
Reply to  merij1

My thoughts exactly! And a contemporary of Billy Joel, to boot….

phl1rxd
phl1rxd(@phl1rxd)
5 days ago
Reply to  merij1

@merij – what an apt description of midlife crisis!

phl1rxd
phl1rxd(@phl1rxd)
5 days ago
Reply to  BE

And I just 💖 reading your comments…

Had to break there for a bit but I plan to get back to this after the holidays.

Happy Thanksgiving to those folks in the US! BE, I hope you are able to enjoy with the family. 🍗

Last edited 5 days ago by phl1rxd
BE
BE
5 days ago
Reply to  phl1rxd

Thanks phl1rxd. Tomorrow with daughters, their men, granddaughter, ex wife…and all their dogs. I have been assigned sweet potato casserole (gonna ramp it up a bit with chopped dried pineapple, St Elizabeth Allspice Dram (spiced up rum), apple cider, candied walnuts, bacon, and crumbly queso). I will be doing my best to secure all the love and sympathy I can wring from them all as the old man still recovering from surgery.

phl1rxd
phl1rxd(@phl1rxd)
5 days ago
Reply to  BE

@BE – that last line made me chuckle.

From a maker of St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram – St. Elizabeth adds an important drying aromatic that doesn’t affect the drink’s texture. It also shines in the kitchen, as an ingredient in a meat marinade (it makes for an easy jerk chicken with superb carmelization), a finishing spice for a curry, or splashed into whipped cream for a dessert.

J3ffc
J3ffc
5 days ago
Reply to  BE

Thanks for advocating for this show, BE (and thanks to KFG, the founder of our feast, for slotting it in). Even my wife, who does not watch from me but can sometimes overhear from another room, remarked that “this one is different, isn’t it?”

phl1rxd
phl1rxd(@phl1rxd)
5 days ago
Reply to  J3ffc

Exactly right j3ffc – we are all grateful for Fangurl 💖 for creating a safe, positive and healthy community for all of us.

Lane
Lane
3 days ago
Reply to  BE

What a fantastic reaction you wrote BE. I don’t have a fraction of your eloquence. But I’d like to put in my thoughts (even though so belatedly — my real life interfered). This is the second Kdrama I’ve watched and after this show, everything was a let down. Ditto in everything you wrote about the story, composition, music, acting, etc. — I am amazed at how meticulous this drama was executed with every little detail seemingly well thought out, even though the casual kdrama audience might not notice. I bow to the director and writer and the rest of the cast and crew.

One thing I really loved about this drama is that they didn’t need to spell out in big letters the time jump (for example, two month later etc.) The writer/director expected us the audience to understand just based on the interaction between Sun Jae and Hye Won. Between episodes 9 (day after the consummation of the affair) and the time jump to episode 10 (Sun Jae’s concert), we could already see how full fledged this affair is going. The body language of the two, how Sun Jae has become so confident in touching Hye Won and the long silences between them spoke of how much deeper they are in intimacy and emotional connection. Same as Georgia Peach, I also loved the scene in the construction site where Sun Jae lead Hye Won thru all the obstacles to get to a safe place. I also see it as a metaphor. Hye Won has to go thru difficulties to cross over the morass that is the chaebol family. But she now had Sun Jae to to guide her over the obstacles. I love how tender and protective Sun Jae was with Hye Won. Even though he was upset with Hye Won’s request to stop communication, he held her and made sure she got down the steep stairs safely. Who wouldn’t love such a man, no matter that he didn’t have a penny to his name? One of my favorite scenes (and I have so many in this drama!) is also the scene when Hye Won went to the resto that SJ’s mom used to own. Yoo Ah In really killed that scene for me. He truly is a master actor in his micro expressions — his happiness combined with disbelief when the ahjumma pointed out Hye Won behind him, him trying to be nonchalant when he joined her but he kept breaking out into big smiles. Plus everything you said about that scene BE. And that Piano Man scene! Kim Hee Ae had to emote for the entirety of the song which ran for 2-3 minutes ? And oh did she deliver! My heart broke for her, her lost youth, the realization that she gave up her prime years in the pursuit of that something that she was now realizing as totally worthless, in the service of people only out to fully use her.

Hye Won is a consummate liar as she herself admitted. She is wily and thinks 10 steps ahead of the pack. But I wonder why when face to face with Dami, she was reduced to a stammering woman. Was it because of guilt that she took someone away from Dami? Faced with a much younger woman (who was infinitely more appropriate for Sun Jae even without the age factor), did all her insecurities rise up to overwhelm her brain? Does Dami remind her of what she won’t be able to give to Sun Jae — kids? a baggage free relationship that won’t be frowned upon by society? a future career untainted by an affair?

Today I saw in a Youtube video where YAI was promoting his latest project (Hellbound), he specifically mentioned Kim Hee Ae, director Anh Pan Suk and writer Jung Sung-joo and the rest of the ensemble. He said that he wanted to work with these artists again. Here’s hoping that the drama gods answer his wishes (and mine!)

KFG again I love your write up. Thank you for providing a space for me to unload my thoughts about this piece of art. To everybody here, I love reading all your comments. I found Secret Love Affair just last year, 6 years after it was shown. I am so happy for about this rewatch!

Georgia Peach
2 days ago
Reply to  Lane

https://mydramalist.com/article/yoo-ah-in-and-ahn-eun-jin-in-talks-to-lead-the-new-netflix-series-the-fool-of-the-end

just an FYI. seems the writer of SLA has written a drama and our YAI will get his wish if he decides to take it.

and, Lane, i also saw the interview you mention. i’m in love with Chicago Typewriter. YAI mentions this as his favorite drama! he and the FL have great chemistry.. imo.. and they have a superior KKiss in this drama.
agree with your assessment of the confrontation DaMi brings to HyeWon. she knows DaMi is right…only her heart will just not allow her to let go of SunJae.

eda harris
eda harris
2 days ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

thanks. but too long to wait.

Lane
Lane
22 hours ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

I too loved Chicago Typewriter. Though it is not as tightly written as SLA here (this is such a unique gem), I liked how the mystery of the story unfolded. I literally was crying with a box of tissues at the end. It was a thoughtful piece with a great cast (loved the friendship plus the romance) and it had a good message too.

Georgia Peach
8 days ago

OOOOhhhh, the tears! Tears from overwhelming pressure. Tears from what might have been. Tears from having a first love. Tears of powerless and helplessness. The tears of youth and the tears of middle age. Youth doing what it can with hope and sincerity. Middle age using the wiles and cunning learned in the trenches of life. Oh, the ache in the heart…..

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
6 days ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

Oops. I replied to BE in the wrong box! But hi, GP!

Last edited 6 days ago by merij1
Georgia Peach
5 days ago
Reply to  merij1

well, HI!!! thanks for agreeing with my comment further down to EH…i value your opinion. don’t we just love this drama. sometimes i find myself wanting to go there with these characters and be their defender and support. ridiculous, right? it’s like Money Flower for me…the characters have become REAL people. LOL

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
5 days ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

Well, you had nailed it:

And they are afraid of this change in HyeWon. She is now unpredictable..she has changed drastically from the person who was ‘incapable of having a relationship’ to one who has now lost herself in the arms of this youth…not a man her age, but a boy! She is now dangerous…she knows too much..’.how can we trust her with our secrets??’.

Georgia Peach
4 days ago
Reply to  merij1

thanks merij1, you nail it too! HyeWon has always been a tool for these folks. they have never cared for her…well, only up to the point that they recognized her cunning and intelligence. and now she has found her heart in SunJae. hearts all aflutter….

ps…to anyone. i’m not getting an email notification for comments to my posts. i’m un-crossing the bell. what am i doing wrong? :/

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
4 days ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

At the bottom of each email notification there’s an Unsubscribe link. It’s easy to click on it by accident.

If you go to the top of the comment section you can re-subscribe. If you’re already subscribed it will tell you that. If so, try unsubscribing and then re-subscribing.

You probably already tried that, but just in case!

eda harris
eda harris
3 days ago
Reply to  merij1

thank you for this instruction, i would have never figured it out by myself. i did it and it worked.

Georgia Peach
2 days ago
Reply to  merij1

i also un-subscribed and then re-subed. hope it works.

eda harris
eda harris
2 days ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

i actually did not even un-subscribed. i just found the subscribed, and voilà – click – and it’s working. i am getting the emails now. good luck to you.

JJ
JJ
9 days ago

Oh! And I found SLA is loosely based on a Japanese Film called Tokyo Tower from 2005. Has anyone seen it?

MariaF
MariaF
9 days ago
Reply to  JJ

I think the only similarity there is the 20 year age difference. But I’ve read somewhere that SLA creators still had to pay for the rights to use that plot.

JJ
JJ
8 days ago
Reply to  MariaF

@Maria F – Thanks for letting me know 🙂

eda harris
eda harris
7 days ago
Reply to  JJ

makes sense.
by the way, i love your “OOOOhhhh, the tears!” comment!!!

eda harris
eda harris
7 days ago
Reply to  eda harris

my “make sense” remark got in the wrong place – it’s in response to your “as to why no one says anything about YoungWoo’s nor Chairman’s” posted below.

Georgia Peach
5 days ago
Reply to  eda harris

thanks eh. once again…i’ll hate to say goodbye to SunJae and HyeWon. One wonders if they (YAI and KHA) realize the impact this drama has had on people!?!

eda harris
eda harris
4 days ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

i myself wonder so many times whether these actors, directors know just how much we admire them and live with them, sharing the joys and sorrows of the characters that they so masterfully present to us. it kind of would be almost a waste – if they do not know, although the actors, especially the well known and outstanding ones are put on pedestals without our help. o, well. when i was 15, i wrote a letter to one of the french actors which was full of admiration and love. i never wrote such letters again, since i never got an answer that i was expecting and waiting for. o well.

Georgia Peach
4 days ago
Reply to  eda harris

surely, they must know. YAI seems so attuned and inhabits so acutely to the roles he plays … surely, those characters must come to him on occasion as they come back to us.

Georgia Peach
2 days ago
Reply to  eda harris

eh..go to youtube and look for…up close nd personal with Yoo Ah-in. it’s on a program called the swoon.

JJ
JJ
9 days ago

So I did some searching on the whole Billy Joel song and did not find anything compelling thats not already in the Story. I am wondering if the writer just happens to love this song and wanted to insert said song at this point?

Some people complained the whole song was used and was way too long. One person mentioned that the song is about the loss of ones dreams and feeling trapped. And specifically, they said this about the song – “ It’s a song about musical talent reduced to scraping a living, which puts the entertainer on the same level as his audience and forms a special bond.”

A couple things of interest though that I had forgotten is that the song gets played after Hye Won talks about her time in the States in the US. And she specifically names this song as what she heard when she was babysitting “crazy acting lady”. She points out to Sun Jae after the music has finished “You see how they say living is like that for everyone”.

Regardless of what the song means, I think both of them do a beautiful job with that scene as they camera is so close to their faces for almost the entirety of the scene. I think its profoundly moving as Hye Won cannot control her tears any longer. First, she let them go with her best friend and now she continues to crack her hard shell around her with Sun Jae.

eda harris
eda harris
9 days ago

everybody knows my sentiments toward this drama and i can’t get enough of it.
“illicit” as noted below by trent. yap, “illicit” by societal definition… the most important female writer of the 20th century, xiao hong (the pride of chinese women, and the country as a whole) once said at the end of her tragic life at age 31: ” if the pain is in the marrow you do not concern yourself with flesh wounds”. in this drama the marrow is in the moments of hw’s and sj’s existences meshed as one within the music that rips their hearts apart (as sj said), meshed in the 2 souls drawn to each other from the vast spaces of distant ageless universes, that lack awareness of the “illicit” norms and laws of human societies, and do not and can not care about “flesh wounds” – wounds inflicted by SOME members of this society. and although the drama does not let us into their lives 24/7, i do assume that they had more romantic/intimate encounters than just that one amazing scene that we were privy to. it is hard to imagine that they just hold hands and look into each others eyes a few more times, especially that hw tells her best girlfriend, responding to her question “what is the hardest thing on your mind right now?” hw starts bowling, saying that it is actually missing sj, despite all. that tells me that their mutual feelings have developed beyond just “holding hands” a few times.
and also, why is everybody so concerned about hw’s adultery, completely disregarding seo young-woo, of course it is not a secret that she has morals of an alley cat and is ethically challenged to say the least, but in reality, she OPENLY flaunts her boy-toy among other “unlawful” dirty tricks, and nobody says a word – is everybody just a hypocrite on a high horse?

JJ
JJ
9 days ago
Reply to  eda harris

@eda – WOW! This is beautiful, Eda ❤️

MariaF
MariaF
9 days ago
Reply to  eda harris

@eda harris: Beautifully written.

I agree that there is no way SunJae and Hye Won had just one night together.

He came to her house the following day and drove her to his apartment. And that scene after the concert: they didn’t even bother to go the after party, because they wanted to be alone together. Also, when Hye Won told SunJae that they weren’t going to see each other for a short while, she couldn’t have been talking about not seeing him at school: she was his teacher there. So she was obviously talking about a different way of “not seeing” him.

Hye Won and SunJae are having an affair. No wonder Joon-hyung needs a double doze of sleeping pills.

Different people want to catch Hye Won for their own self-serving reasons, but I thinks everyone also wants to see Hye Won fall from her “high horse”. Especially the chairman’s daughter. Hye Won has been lecturing her for years about her affairs, and now she wants to prove that Hye Won is as disgraceful as she is. It doesn’t even occur to the daughter that these two people have real, deep feelings for each other.

It’s really fascinating to watch how their bond is strengthening, but we can already see that it’s very unlikely SunJae is going to tolerate Hye Won’s business dealings or to be a male version of a side piece.

Georgia Peach
5 days ago
Reply to  MariaF

i have found it interesting that after HyeWon’s bold move toward SunJae when she dresses in his clothes…that each intimate encounter has been at SunJae’s prompting…as when he draws her to himself in his room and onto the bed downstairs, when they go to the side stage and they lay on the mats on the floor, and again in the hanok b’n’b he leans in for a kiss as they sit on the floor.

MariaF
MariaF
3 days ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

@georgia peach : I agree with your observation! That’s what I’ve been saying before: it’s like creators of this show are ashamed of showing her in a moment of passion. As if she is above it, or something.

Georgia Peach
2 days ago
Reply to  MariaF

that may very well be the case…however..i have thought that it plays into whole ‘secret’ theme of this drama. also it would be contrary to this character’s character…what with her control over her emotions. and it could also have lots to do with the conservativeness of Korean society. you’ll not get a ‘cougar’ of a woman that is sophisticated..it’s the Yong-Woo’s that are aggressive.

MariaF
MariaF
2 days ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

Hye Won kissed SunJae, when she wanted to stop him from going after the blackmailer. And then there is that scene in episode 14 (no specifics). It seems Hye Won initiates intimacy or physical contact only when she wants to deflect SunJae’s attention from some problem.

Georgia Peach
8 days ago
Reply to  eda harris

EH…as to why no one says anything about YoungWoo’s nor Chairman’s dalliances is that HyeWon isn’t one of them. They have privilege and rank and what they do isn’t wrong in their eyes. It’s the height of arrogance to say someone else is doing wrong when you are doing the same or worse. And they are afraid of this change in HyeWon. She is now unpredictable..she has changed drastically from the person who was ‘incapable of having a relationship’ to one who has now lost herself in the arms of this youth…not a man her age, but a boy! She is now dangerous…she knows too much..’.how can we trust her with our secrets??’.

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
8 days ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

Yes, this is how I see it as well.

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
9 days ago

Speaking of the fortune teller, has anyone been able to figure out what her illegal activity investment is?

At first I thought she might be providing a money laundering vehicle for Russian or Chinese officials, mingling their stolen cash with Korean money.

Then I decided it must be some form of insider trading, which would fit better with her nickname.

I’m assuming the nickname is not literal, but rather way of describing her seemingly magical way of predicting the stock market.

BE
BE
6 days ago
Reply to  merij1

Madame Baek must be an insider trader. The money laundering bit seems to have to do with the institute and shell companies, of which Young Woo’s new enterprise, as well as at least some of Lily Han’s investments serve for the ever unstated whatever the Chairman is actually making his killing at. One must remember too that Hye Won has to put the investments in her family’s name, or at least some of them. It seems like Hye Won’s astute caution must be the thorn in Madame Baek’s side because she probably wants in on these investments via Lily Han, and like Young Woo’s lawyer husband views Hye Won with extreme suspicion as a powerful rival in the Seohan cheobol.

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
6 days ago
Reply to  BE

That sounds right.

Hye Won using her family’s account for illegal activity on behalf of others was one of the more stressful moments for me in this show. It suggests she is too caught up in her love affair to continue to think clearly while swimming with sharks.

Last edited 6 days ago by merij1
BE
BE
6 days ago
Reply to  merij1

Is it any wonder Hye Won always has to lay down?

J3ffc
J3ffc
5 days ago
Reply to  BE

Being simple-minded, I admit that I sometimes gloss over some of these details and just remember that “bad people are doing bad things, and bad things are going to happen to the people we like”. Sort of like Hitchcock’s McGuffin: the thing itself is not what’s most important, it’s what people do about the thing that matters.

BE
BE
5 days ago
Reply to  J3ffc

i think this being my fourth watch is the first time I have had the ability to pay closer attention to Seohan, but I am doing so because, I also am seeing show, not just from the perspective of our otp as a couple, but how they affect them each individually.

Trent
10 days ago

I’ve been waiting for that iconic scene to show up, since it seems like fully half of the promo pics I see for this show are of that one.

It’s interesting to me that, up until our couple flees town for a night together in the inn, they’ve actually only slept together once. At least, just the once that the show has revealed to us. Are we meant to imagine that there have been other liaisons kept entirely off screen and unreferenced in any way? It’s fine either way, but if I’m correct, it really is a bit…disconcerting how everyone is just suddenly treating it as basically a given that there’s an illicit relationship between our couple.

And now we begin to see showing of teeth, the bite inherent in one of my favorite Maturin quotes: “I am no friend to adultery, which surely promises more than it can perform except in the article of destruction…” We are starting to see the noose drawing tight, and I imagine the next couple episodes are going to be nigh unbearable.

BE
BE
6 days ago
Reply to  Trent

There really are two elements to the show that remain a bit blurred–the first is what the heck the Chairman and his gentlemen in suits make their money at really, and the second has to do with the passing of time. The fact that the rice and sides shop owner knows to nod to Seon Jae Hye Won’s presence indicates she has been there enough times to be recognized in relation to him (or it is true perhaps Hye Won has told the lady to nod in her direction just this time).

But Trent we are looking at an offense that can lead to civil lawsuits, and at the time remained a felony even if not always prosecuted. We are looking at a society in which never mind being miserable, a man would bring up how not just he but his family would be shamed by a divorce. This is a misogynistic culture and a misogynistic subculture, and the women are thinking a bit like the antelope in the Red Bull commercial that they do not necessarily have to run faster than the lion, just faster than the other women.

Everything in this show is heightened. I do not actually remember there being any such scene in the show as the one you refer to in the promos. But Hye Won is unknowingly vindicated when asking to keep her bedding separate because they could be stoned (straight out of the Bible that) when her husband’s man gives definition to the concept of a fine toothed comb.

Trent
6 days ago
Reply to  BE

I probably wasn’t very clear, I was just referring to the scene captured by the image that KFG posted at the head of these episode notes, the one of the two lovers sitting at the threshold of their room at the inn, relaxed and contemplative the next morning. It’s a kind of lovely shot that conveys a lot, and I can see what it shows as one of the images representative of the show.

You’ll get no argument from me about the magnitude of the danger with which they are flirting. I feel sometimes like a combination squeaky wheel/wet blanket in the face of all the ecstatic commentary about what a pure and beautiful love our OTP shares, and I’m all…yes, but. That’s all well and good (and it is!): I appreciate the essential relationship that stands at the heart of our story and the connection across the gulf of age, class, power differentials, etc…BUT I also maintain that the connection wouldn’t have nearly the force or the unique flavor that it does without the intensely oppositional framework in which it takes place.

BE
BE
5 days ago
Reply to  Trent

Of course, but the oppositional framework, ie, the corruption inherent in S. Korean class culture riddled with family histories of criminal behavior and how so many, even academics contribute to that and hypocrisy of its mores are in this show, at least for me, more clearly exposed than in a the whole raft of dystopian and satirical k dramas put out year in and year out. Hye Won and Seon Jae give us the real stakes of such, how it stains the most complex and intelligent of women, the purest, most talented and innocent of young men, and how it cuts your heart out to see it thus enacted. Show is of a whole, and to take out any element would be to miss its larger point—the human dilemma—how to live righteously in a world brimful of everything but righteous if looked at with a hard eye.

JJ
JJ
10 days ago

Just beautiful KFG, Just Beautiful, sigh. Thank you for this beautiful sentence “……of how the connection between Hye Won and Sun Jae, is so transcendent, that even reason has to withdraw, in the face of its beauty.”

The second watch of SLA is so difficult because of the cast of characters surrounding them, they are so unpleasant and unlikable. Ugh.

I always wondered why the Writer-nim picked the Billy Joel Song for this moment. We have all this beautiful classical music throughout the Show guiding our emotional journey, then we have this Song from Billy Joel. An amazing song as well just different. Why is this song here? What does the Show want to tell us now? While its a very popular song in America sung in many a bar with many a friend, I wonder how this song has been received in other countries? Sung in a bar with many a friend? 🙂

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
10 days ago
Reply to  JJ

I too thought the Billy Joel song was an odd choice. But I’m not a fan of his music.

When we first saw SLA my wife and I discussed this and decided they wanted a pop song from back when Hye Won was still innocent and picked this one mostly for the name/subject, not the music per se.

Last edited 10 days ago by merij1
JJ
JJ
10 days ago
Reply to  merij1

– I Love this song 🙂

I went to search for some theories out there and some say each person mentioned in the song relates to a character in the Show! Hmmmmm…..

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
10 days ago
Reply to  JJ

I will await your analysis with bated breath.

JJ
JJ
8 days ago
Reply to  merij1

– LOL!!! As you said on Patreon – “one cannot dispute taste” 😉

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
8 days ago
Reply to  JJ

The first person who ever said that to me said it in Latin. And then translated it for me. So I believe it’s a very old phrase.

j3ffc
j3ffc
9 days ago
Reply to  merij1

I went through the same thought process in the time that it took Hye Won to spell out B I L L Y J O E L and for the song to come up (for a moment, I was like, NO WAY are they going to do a Billy Idol song 😁). I did predict which one it would be. Agreed that it is as much do to the title as anything (although I will keep my mind open pending the results of JJ’s researches). I’m a middle of the road Billy Joel fan – like some of his stuff, other stuff not so much – and this song was on my bad list for a long time due to it being overplayed so much when it came out. But, y’know, I gave it a fresh listen a couple of months ago and came to a new appreciation of it being a really well-constructed pop song. For some reason, the waltz time and harmonica give me old timey vibes that somehow excuses some of the harder-working rhymes (Davy/Navy, etc.), and the lyrics fit the topic well. While I’m still not a big fan of the tune, I can see why millions of people do love it.

Still was surprised to hear the whole darned song, though. I will admit to partly entertaining myself with reading the Viki-commenters whining their way through it.

During the scene, I was first thinking that it was too bad that Sun Jae, with rudimentary English at best, isn’t able to appreciate the lyrics, but then again, maybe that’s another subtle example of Show demonstrating the togetherness (although it took him for-ever to take that second earphone) the couple share with through music but at the same time there is still a gulf between them.

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
9 days ago
Reply to  j3ffc

Billy Idol would have been so much better! More attitude, to reflect her earlier self before she joined the ‘suits.

Last edited 9 days ago by merij1
j3ffc
j3ffc
9 days ago
Reply to  merij1

LOL….redubbing the scene to “White Wedding” would be hilarious.

JJ
JJ
8 days ago
Reply to  j3ffc

– HYSTERICAL – 😂😂😂 – “White Wedding” – 😂😂😂

eda harris
eda harris
9 days ago
Reply to  j3ffc

i also never ever cared for billy joel, but somehow in this context, being a part of the whole and inserted into this particular scene, it made sense to me, and i must say, i somehow surprisingly enjoyed this scene and the song itself, for the first time in my life. i guess, right time, right place equals right choice. as i said, i live WITH this drama and IN this drama.
in general, the music in this drama, more than most of other dramas even by the same director (something in the rain and watching now one spring night) is the most organic and supportive of the whole story, characters, and just all together beautiful, touching all the strings of your own inner soul’s instruments.

JJ
JJ
8 days ago
Reply to  j3ffc

– Finally had time to do my “hard core” research 😉 I didnt find much, but I did a separate post. Thanks for the tip about the Comments as I read them as I went back to watch the scene. People sure can be very funny at times.

j3ffc
j3ffc
6 days ago
Reply to  JJ

Thanks for checking!

Su San
Su San
8 days ago
Reply to  JJ

About the song choice of “Piano Man:” It was a surprise to find that piece in this Show, but I don’t think it was irrelevant….

*Musicians who don’t “make it” in the classical world often crossover to the entertainment world (Elton John studied music at London’s Royal Academy of Music, although BJ isn’t one of those pop artists).

*At this point in the Show, the possibility of “running away” together still seemed like a plausible path for this couple so the “man, what are you doing here” lyrics seemed appropriate considering SJ’s applications to study abroad. He is extremely talented, yet, he possibly could have to give up classical studies for another muscial career path (lang Lang from China was a classical pianist who is now an entertainer) to be with HW. SJ is HW’s piano man 😉

*Since it was a song from the non-classical world and they were musically running away or taking a break from being in that world–just like eating breakfast in the village rather than an upscale restaurant-so it sorta fits in that regard.

*Additionally, choosing this song was also a way for HW to expose another side of her musical self (music outside of the classical realm), her musical studies (in the USA) and her musical world-liness (knowing about music from abroad).

What are your thoughts?

JJ
JJ
8 days ago
Reply to  Su San

@Su San – Ohhhhhhhh, I love it! What you wrote is the best I have seen and will suggest they be regarded as canon 🙂

Thank you makes so much sense!!!!

I had looked up if Billy Joel had a classical music background though and found that only his father was a classical pianist even though Billy Joel did takes lessons.

Ahhh, I forgot about SJ applying to study abroad….. I had been wondering what happened to Lang Lang so funny you mentioned him.

Ohhhh, I love that they were musically taking a break 🙂

The only thing I would add is I thought her tears were about the loss of her younger years and her sadness over where her life is now at with her work. I think her tears are also over SJ now and the possibility of taking him away from his classical path to be with her.

Thank you so much Su San, this was AWESOME 🙂

eda harris
eda harris
8 days ago
Reply to  Su San

for hw it was more of a sentimental recollection, a throw back to her youth. i think she was lost in a sense of nostalgia and guided by it as memories flooded her current consciousness, something that can be remembered but never reclaimed. i think it was also a way to share with sj a part of her self from the times that she was his age approximately, as sharing ones past is an important way to get even closer to the person that one starts to develop a new intimate connection.
i personally do not believe that either sj or hw would be willing to move outside of the classical realm, at least not in the near future, as both are completely grounded and invested in classical music, and the value of it as their primary connection.

Paulina
Paulina(@soilseothuaidh)
8 days ago
Reply to  Su San

@Su San – I love your comment. It is an interesting possiblity. After all, great music is alway great music and we shouldn’t be ‘culturally prejudiced’, as Nigel Kennedy has put it. Have you heard of him pulling out of a concert at the Royal Albert Hall in September because they didn’t want him to include Hendrix with with Chineke!? 🎻🎸😊 Here is an article about it: https://www.theguardian.com/music/2021/sep/20/violinist-nigel-kennedy-cancels-concert-after-classic-fm-stops-hendrix-tribute

eda harris
eda harris
7 days ago
Reply to  Paulina

paulina, thank you for this article. breaking barriers and raising awareness in all aspects of life is what it is all about, including but not limited to the korean society, which is this director’s exposure in all three of his work, – secret love affair, one spring night and something in the rain. i have not seen any other of his work, but intend to.

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
7 days ago
Reply to  eda harris

@eda_harris Goes almost without saying, but be sure to report back when you do!

After reading @Timescout’s recommendation (“it’s a satire and rather hilarious in places”) I searched my email notifications for SLA director Ahn Pan-seok’s Heard it Through The Grapevine (2015, which puts it just after SLA and just before Something in the Rain) and discovered that it’s one of Beez’ fave shows, and that it’s been on KFG’s long list of shows to watch for a very long time. Also, I see it’s currently available on Viki, at least here in the US.

Here’s what @Beez said on August 16, 2020:

@Old Listener – you might like I Heard It Through the Grapevine (or as I liked to call it – What Happens After Candy Gets her Chaebol).

The two young people are very good people but because of the trope (the only trope in this show) that she is from a lower middle class normal family (destitute in the eyes of his family) and he is from a stodgy old money family and you get to see their married life. It’s a dark comedy and also gives a different view of Korean life. We often see the poor family, and we often see the super wealthy in dramas.

But his family is a family we’ve not seen before in Kdrama. They’re wealthy but because they’re a family of generational lawyers (not a conglomerate) and the money is not flashy or shown being used extravagantly. But there seems to be a specific set of manners and etiquette (all of which I didn’t understand) the poor young wife must navigate living with her in laws who are dismayed to realize she’s actually smarter than their pampered son as the two youngsters both study for university.

It’s difficult to explain because it’s a slice of life drama as well.

Last edited 7 days ago by merij1
eda harris
eda harris
7 days ago
Reply to  merij1

” be sure to report back when you do!” merij1, will do, totally.
ok, so seems like “heard it through the grapevine” is pushed to the top now, ahead of all the other “urgent” needs, and will be my next watch.

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
10 days ago

Such a well-done and heavy show!

On the lighter side, did you know that Gil Hae-yeon (actress who plays the “fortune teller” investment advisor) has been in every one of director Ahn Pan-seok’s shows since she started TV acting in 2012?

Many of us know her as the wretched so-called mother of the FL in Something In the Rain (2018), who then becomes the wonderful mother of the FL in One Spring Night (2019).

But she and Ahn Pan-seok also teamed up for How Long I’ve Kissed (2012), The End of the World (2013) and Heard It Through the Grapevine (2015).

So if this topic ever comes up while you happen to be appearing on Korean Jeopardy, you are set!

Last edited 10 days ago by merij1
JJ
JJ
10 days ago
Reply to  merij1

– AND!!! She is also in Do you like Brahms 🙂

Cant wait to be on Korean Jeopardy!!! Thanks for the info 😉

eda harris
eda harris
9 days ago
Reply to  merij1

merij1, since director ahn pan-seok is steadily climbing to the top of my most interesting and enchanting “emotional genius” directors, i would be interested in his other works. you mention  How Long I’ve Kissed (2012), The End of the World (2013) and Heard It Through the Grapevine – did you watch those? and what is your opinion? any other suggestions?

merij1
merij1(@merij1)
9 days ago
Reply to  eda harris

No, I just got curious that she’s in all three of his shows that I have seen, so I looked them both up on Wikipedia.

I too would like to know what people think of his other works.

Timescout
9 days ago
Reply to  eda harris

I haven’t seen the others but Heard It Through the Grapevine is great! It’s a satire and probably my fave from all the Ahn Pan Seok dramas I’ve watched. It was laugh-out-loud in places, which makes it a bit different PD Ahn drama, I guess. 🙂

eda harris
eda harris
9 days ago
Reply to  Timescout

thanks. will go on my never ending list.

Georgia Peach
4 days ago
Reply to  eda harris

at the beginning of ‘covid year’ my friend said to me…’this will let you see all your kdramas that you’ve been wanting to watch!’ little she knew…i tried to explain it to her…she looked a bit dazzled by my reply.

eda harris
eda harris
4 days ago
Reply to  Georgia Peach

duality of nature- 2 sides to everything. the other side of the pandemic is our dramas! LOL.