Welcome to the Open Thread, everyone! This happy shot of In Sang and Bom is so great, that I had to have it headline our post today! I love it when our babies are happy. 😍
SOME IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENTS, before we begin:
ZERO SPOILER POLICY
1. We will be adopting a ZERO SPOILER POLICY for this Open Thread, except for events that have happened in the show, up to this point.
The spoiler tags don’t work in email notifications, therefore, please take note that WE WILL NOT BE USING SPOILER TAGS FOR THIS OPEN THREAD.
ANY AND ALL SPOILERS WILL BE REDACTED to protect first-time viewers in our midst (although, I’d appreciate it if you would save me the trouble of having to redact spoilers, heh 😅).
This includes, but is not limited to, how characters &/or relationships develop, later in the show.
We need to protect the innocent! 😉
2. HOWEVER!! If you’d like to discuss spoilers from a rewatcher’s point of view, I’ve created a SPOILER ZONE for you, where you can discuss all the spoilers you’d like, without the need for spoiler warnings. You can find it here!
Without further ado, here are my reactions to this set of episodes; have fun in the Open Thread, everyone! ❤️
This episode is all about the aftermath of that glorious brawl, and man, do both dads suffer, muahaha.
I mean, yes, I feel mean for laughing, but also, they are so funny, as they walk around like broken robots that need some serious fixing. 😜
On a tangent, I’m glad that Hyeong Sik yells at Secretary Kim, for saying that they should have held back, so that they wouldn’t be leaving empty-handed like this.
I think the thing that is more shocking, is how Secretary Kim genuinely seems clueless as to why his words are considered rude and insulting. Hyeong Sik’s spot on in his angry observation, that Secretary Kim is just like his master.
Jung Ho’s physical discomfort – apparently from aggravating his hemorrhoids – becomes a running gag through most of this episode, along with his obsession with his hair loss situation, ha.
I gotta say, I do feel some satisfaction at his suffering. He’s been so haughty and mean to his in-laws, that it feels like some form of poetic justice, that he suffer in return.
This episode, Bom’s curiosity to learn – specifically about the realities of the world that Jung Ho and Yeon Hee are so concerned about – really comes to the fore, and it’s pretty telling how inconvenient everyone seems to find her desire to learn.
On that note, I appreciate that Jung Ho takes Bom seriously enough, to get Teacher Park to conduct sessions for In Sang and Bom, to show them a “clear global perspective.”
Certainly, I don’t think that Jung Ho actually sets this up expecting Bom to engage with the learning with any kind of questions or pushback. I think that he expects Teacher Park to essentially intimidate them into acquiescence, but that’s just not how Bom rolls (yay, Bom!).
I love how Bom is so smart and genuine, as she wrestles with every concept that’s placed before her, and it’s pretty great that the staff all start to see how unusual and absolutely not average Bom is.
What’s interesting to me, is how In Sang seems.. perplexed and almost frustrated, with Bom’s desire to ask questions and grapple with the concepts.
I think the idea that Bom’s smarter than he is, intimidates In Sang. At least, I think that’s part of it.
Another part of it could be that in In Sang’s mind, Bom’s always represented freedom; something other than the reality that his parents keep prescribing to him.
And now that Bom’s starting to actively engage with that reality, and expressing a desire to understand it, In Sang’s unhappy and uncomfortable, and wants to keep her separate from it.
Because, once she engages with it, she’ll no longer be separate from it, and she’ll therefore no longer represent the escape that he’s always associated her with.
It doesn’t help matters that on top of all this, Bom’s experiencing a lot of discomfort from breastfeeding Jin Young, and this adds to the strain between her and In Sang.
It’s just really unhelpful that right after Bom’s told In Sang not to touch her because it hurts, his instinct is to hug her. Sigh. Our In Sang sometimes doesn’t seem very bright, eh? 😅
Although, I must say, in his own way, In Sang’s trying to be more grown up and responsible too, like how he checks on whether Jung Ho has washed his hands, when Jung Ho makes to enter Jin Young’s room, to spend time with him.
How ironic, though, that Yeon Hee sees this as part of In Sang and Bom being high and mighty. Even more interesting, is how Yeon Hee blames all this on Bom’s parents.
My first reaction was, “Waitaminute.. If we’re talking about being high and mighty here, wouldn’t Yeon Hee and Jung Ho be the main culprits..?”
On further thought, however, I’m leaning towards the conclusion that to Yeon Hee, when someone without power – like Bom’s parents, In Sang and Bom – makes claims towards any sort of basic human rights, this lands as overstepping, and she therefore interprets it as being high and mighty.
Like, “Know your place, basically; you have no rights.”
Gosh, that’s an insidious way of thinking about people.
And therefore, when Jin Ae tries to be decent, and invite Jung Ho and Yeon Hee to their family home in return for the invitation that they’d received, Yeon Hee takes that as overstepping too, and gets Secretary Lee to respond in the snootiest, most condescending manner possible.
Given the shark-infested waters that Yeon Hee’s accustomed to swimming in, I suppose I can’t blame her too much, for being defensive and suspicious.
I mean, just watching her make small talk with her so-called friends is exhausting. It’s all this barely hidden jibes that they just keep throwing at each other. Honestly, with friends like these, is it really necessary to have enemies..?
At this point of our story, Young Ra and her husband are in trouble, and Jung Ho’s in a position to help them – but everyone involved (and by this I mean literally everyone) takes this as an opportunity to angle for power.
I actually think it serves Jung Ho right, that he talks himself into a corner while complaining to Yeon Hee about Young Ra, and gets relegated to sleeping in the library, by a livid Yeon Hee. Ha.
And what a funny parallel, that In Sang gets relegated to sleeping on the couch, because In Sang’s not showing support for Bom’s desire to learn.
So how ironic is it, that when Yeon Hee comes upon In Sang sleeping on the couch, she goes berserk and starts screaming at Bom for doing such a thing to In Sang – when SHE HERSELF is guilty of making her own husband sleep on a couch in the library??
In fact, that couch in the library looks way more uncomfortable than the couch that In Sang got, heh.
Gosh, those double standards are quite blinding, aren’t they? 😜
Gosh, it’s tough to be Bom, isn’t it? 😅 You have to be good enough – but if you’re too good, that’s a problem too. And we see that unfold so clearly, this episode.
First of all, I’m just relieved that Jung Ho gets a clue (from none other than Young Ra herself, pfft), and pacifies Yeon Hee about the whole thing around him having been rejected by Young Ra, and how Yeon Hee had been fed a different story, by Jung Ho’s mother.
On that note, Jung Ho really can be quite the spin doctor, eh? With the way he repackages that entire situation, so that Yeon Hee comes out looking like she’s queen of the world, is quite something.
Perhaps that’s why he’s so good at his job? Coz he’s got an innate talent for spin doctoring?
Also, I just wanted to point out that while my subs say that Jung Ho tells Yeon Hee that she’s the mother of the family, and his queen, he actually uses the terms 무후 (muhu; 母后) and 중전 (jungjeon; 中殿), which mean Royal Mother and Queen respectively.
I just thought that was an interesting touch, since Jung Ho and Yeon Hee do run their household like a royal court.
It’s about this time, where we get a moment between In Sang and Bom, that I think really helps us to see that they’re at a different level.
In Sang tells Bom that they shouldn’t fight because they’d be used politically, and Bom answers that if his parents used them to make up, it’s worthwhile.
That just goes to show how strategic Bom’s thinking naturally is, doesn’t it? I can see why Jung Ho soon starts to see Bom as an asset – and why Yeon Hee is also quick to see Bom as a threat.
I realize that this episode, we see a lot of “managing” going on.
What I mean is, everyone’s doing their best to manage everyone else.
Jung Ho manages Yeon Hee and her emotions, in order to maintain peace for himself and his household; Secretary Yang manages Jung Ho and his hair loss fears, in order to achieve a peaceful day for herself and her colleagues.
Jung Ho manages his in-laws by applying pressure on Yeong Sik, and then offering him money for the fine, in order to keep them under control.
And Secretary Lee manages Yeon Hee’s mood by praising her beauty, and reminding her that Bom, who can’t lie, had likewise praised her beauty, in order to manage Yeon Hee’s perception of Bom,
On that note, I have to say, it gives me a great deal of gratification to see that almost all the staff are rooting for Bom.
I mean, Secretary Lee didn’t have to put in that word for Bom, but she did, and that results in a significant step forward in Bom’s relationship with Yeon Hee. Yay, Secretary Lee!
And, it’s also just really nice to see all the staff looking on with smiles and nods, as they see Bom doing well with her in-laws, during meal times. I love that Bom’s basically won their hearts, all on her own. ❤️
I was sooo happy to hear Teacher Park tell Jung Ho and Yeon Hee, without mincing his words, that Bom’s basically exceptional, and if it were up to him, he’d put her on the same path as In Sang.
Yay, Bom, and yay, Teacher Park! I just love seeing Bom do well, so this pleased me greatly, as did seeing Jung Ho’s and Yeon Hee’s eyes grow as big as saucers, as they realized that they’ve been underestimating Bom all this while.
At this point, I kinda love Teacher Park for paving the way for Bom, in describing the possibilities that he sees, based on her potential.
He really knows how to speak Jung Ho’s language, and it was really quite gratifying to me, to see Jung Ho getting a big ol’ glint in his eye, as he turns over Bom’s potential in his head.
I do appreciate that little scene that we get, of In Sang being proud of Bom for being “self-generated electricity” (cute, and apt!), and telling her that it’s totally ok for her to do better than him. Aw. That’s sweet.
And, it’s also sweet of Bom to also acknowledge that In Sang’s worked hard too, and that tutoring doesn’t work for everyone.
These two are so endearing together, really. Their passion and idealism is such a bright spot in this drama world.
I loved watching Bom impress Jung Ho with her aptitude and prowess, and those little leaked pleased smiles that we get from Jung Ho, were pretty great.
Of course, he’s still insufferably manipulative and full of himself, like in how he tells Yeon Hee that Bom’s family will be grateful now, no matter what he gives them, but it’s just nice to see Bom win Jung Ho’s favor, in spite of himself.
On a side note, I’ve been meaning to say something about the way Secretary Yang and Secretary Min tend to talk to each other in a mash-up of Korean and Japanese, whenever they’re commenting on Jung Ho’s matters.
First, doesn’t it say something, that they need to be so well-read and well-educated, in order to be secretaries at Hansong? It really is a premium organization, when you look at it that way.
Second, this reminds me of something I came across once (in a book? Movie? I can’t recall, sorry!), that the safest way to talk about secrets, is in the open, but in multiple languages.
That’s essentially what Secretary Yang and Secretary Min are doing, right? Which means that most people who aren’t fluent in Japanese wouldn’t be able to understand what they’re talking about, even if they overheard the conversation. Clever.
On a nerdy side note, I think the reason the Korean-Japanese mash-up works so well, is because the sentence structures of both languages are so similar, so it’s easy to switch between languages, for different parts of speech. Cool!
That flashback that we get, when In Sang asks Bom which part of the journey had been the hardest for her, to how heartbroken and upset Bom’s parents had been at the news of her pregnancy, is pretty gutting.
It really puts into perspective how much they’ve all suffered, and how far Bom has come, in her journey to achieve her goals.
..Which is why it’s so concerning, that just when things have been going so well, Yeon Hee and Jung Ho suddenly become cognizant of the threat that Bom would present, should she do better than In Sang.
And since the likelihood of Bom doing better than In Sang is pretty high, I’m guessing that Jung Ho and Yeon Hee’s anxiety levels around this, would be pretty high too. Eep.
Don’t be mean to Bom, please! Bom is special and precious, and needs to be treasured. 🥺