“Emergency Couple” episode 6 recap

When Jin Hee drinks and talks, it's like dinner theatre.
When Jin Hee drinks and talks, it’s like dinner theatre.

Side dish: In this episode, Jin Hee takes a breather from feeling sorry for herself at the hospital to feel sorry for herself while drinking soju and eating pork skin. I don’t know which particular kind of pork skin she’s eating, but this anju recipe as narrated by James Strange sounds intriguing, if you can find some pork skin. Alternately, this week’s episode of “Let’s Eat” featured crab marinated in soy sauce, and it looked delicious. Try it at Piggy’s Restaurant (which really seems like the kind of place that should have pork skin… sigh…).

Episode Recap

We’re right back where episode 5 ended with Evil Mom (Park Joon Geum) throwing things and flailing at Oh Jin Hee (Song Ji Hyo). Evil Mom slaps her in the face just as her son aka Jin Hee’s ex-husband and fellow intern, Oh Chang Min (Choi Jin Hyuk), and ER supervisor, Kook Cheon Soo (Lee Pil Mo) walk in the door. Chang Min immediately regresses into childhood as he ineffectually whines at his mother’s loony behaviour. Cheon Soo sends Jin Hee and Chang Min outside to ascertain what happened. There may be a decent human being somewhere inside Chang Min, but he’s buried under a whiny eight year old boy who can’t even tell his mom that slapping people is wrong.

The exes leave so that the adults can talk, and Evil Mom immediately tries to get her intern switched to Han Ah Reum (Clara), the intern she’s eyeing as a possible wife for Chang Min, but Cheon Soo shuts her down. So, she puts a call through to Evil Uncle, the Yoon Hospital director, to pull some strings, and dismisses a wide-eyed Cheon Soo.

Jin Hee is back in the cat stairwell, and an apologetic Chang Min brings her a cold drink to cool her slapped face with. She ignores it and leaves, but not before she reminds him that Evil Mom was the same when Jin Hee was her daughter-in-law, though with less slapping, “What a crappy life.” Chang Min has the grace to look abashed.

Back in Evil Mom’s room, Ah Reum arrives, much to the annoyance of Cheon Soo. Evil Mom and Ah Reum indulge in a nausea-inducing display of sucking up to each other as Evil Mom chucks Cheon Soo out. She apologises for the incident in Chang Min’s apartment (see episode 4 review), and comes out with such lines as “Your heart is like the Pacific Ocean.”

Cheon Soo saves himself from barfing like the rest of us by going to talk to the ER director. He asks to delay Jin Hee’s dismissal long enough for him to ask her to quit instead, thus saving the ER from budget cuts. The ER director is surprised by how much Cheon Soo has changed, in that he’s not fighting for Jin Hee. Cheon Soo says that if he didn’t, he’d quit again and go back to fishing. Ooh, more tortured past. Hot!

Good thing Cheon Soo saved his stomach, because he goes out to eat next. As he sits and eats, in walks Jin Hee, who doesn’t see him and sits by herself, calling for pork skin and soju. He watches as she proceeds to drunkenly call everyone she knows, to tell them how great being a doctor is, and how well she’s doing. Four bottles of soju later, she asks for the bill and passes out. A substitute driver shows up, and it’s Gary from something I should know, but I don’t, because I’ve only been watching dramas for two months. Sorry. Anyway, she hits on him as they drive away. (Gary and Song Ji Hyo are both participants in the “urban action variety” TV show, “Running Man”. The most entertaining part is watching celebrities do stuff like this. -Junggugeo Kaenada)

Next morning, Jin Hee has a hangover. Mom feeds her breakfast while Jin Hee recounts her sister, Jin Ae’s phone call of yesterday. Her mom gets angry at Jin Ae, because she favours Jin Hee, whereas Jin Hee defends Jin Ae’s behaviour as acting out. “What’s so great about me anyway?” she asks. I briefly wonder the same thing as her pity party continues.

Chang Min runs into Ah Reum in the lobby of their building. Ah Reum mentions that Evil Mom asked for her as an intern, and that all misunderstandings are cleared between them. Concert tickets come up and they make plans to go that night.

Jin Hee sits outside of the hospital holding her resignation letter, and flashes back to all the reasons she has to quit. In the ER, the interns are sitting around waiting for Cheon Soo to show up. He does, in full drill sergeant mode, and Jin Hee shows up moments after, 37 seconds too late. He berates her, and tells her not to drink so much in future, then gives the interns a list of seminars they have to attend, as they whine at the workload.

Jin Hee goes to a dispirited Cheon Soo’s office to hand in her resignation letter. She spots his hole-y socks under his desk and starts giggling. He can’t figure out what’s so funny, which sets her off even more. As she laughs, Chang Min comes in to relay a request from the junior resident, Kim Min Ki (Kwon Min) to see a patient. Cheon Soo leaves and Jin Hee finally bursts out laughing. Chang Min throws a jealous fit over it, like the eight year old he is. They argue, and Jin Hee storms out.

My gorge rises as Evil Mom and Ah Reum indulge in further sucking up, but my dinner was delicious, and I don’t want to waste it. Turns out Evil Mom is on the point of being discharged. Evil Mom takes the opportunity to ask why Ah Reum didn’t go on any of her arranged dates. Ah Reum apologises, and says she’s not ready to get married, and she doesn’t want to meet a guy that way, anyway. Evil Mom smiles and plots, asking if she’s attracted to Chang Min. Ah Reum says she’s not sure, and mentions their concert date. All is smiles and sunshine between them, as I throw up in my mouth.

Back to the ER. Resident, Shim Ji Hye (Choi Yeo Jin) is cleaning a woman’s wound while the woman’s anxious husband hangs on. The husband asks about payment, and is visibly relieved when he’s told it’s covered, because she was injured in the factory. The couple leave together, but the woman collapses, clutching her stomach, right in front of Jin Hee. Despite the pain, the woman refuses to go back into the ER, because they can’t pay for any treatment. Jin Hee sneaks them into another hospital room, and proceeds to diagnose her on the sly. If Jin Hee’s guess is correct, she’ll need costly surgery, which they can’t afford. Jin Hee thinks fast.

Cheon Soo and Ji Hye are examining another patient who has a hemoperitoneum, which is apparently exciting enough to call in all the interns for. Cheon Soo does something that looks vaguely icky as everyone watches. As he walks out, Chang Min follows to ask why Jin Hee was laughing in the middle of resigning. Cheon Soo has no idea, and asks why he cares. Chang Min has no adequate answer. Cheon Soo tells him that if he had performed the tracheotomy, he would have been fired regardless of it being a good job or not, because he’s an intern. Chang Min protests that the patient’s death wasn’t their fault. Why would Jin Hee quit over that?

Cheon Soo reveals that they already received Jin Hee’s dismissal notice. Chang Min protests, saying that accepting the dismissal is tantamount to admitting responsibility for the patient’s death, and they should fight it. Anyway, why is Jin Hee being fired while he’s not? Cheon Soo responds that Chang Min should know why, but it seems he doesn’t. Cheon Soo walks off while Chang Min flashes back to last episode’s conversation with Ji Hye where she told him he got away with it, because he’s from a family of doctors.

Jin Hee steals an ultrasound machine, wheeling it through the hospital while berating herself. She gets back to the couple, and performs an ultrasound. She runs into the ER, and finds Cheon Soo, telling him that a patient has a CBD stone. He takes off running, and it’s not until he’s checked the ultrasound at the patient’s bedside that he clues in that something’s off with the situation. Before Jin Hee can explain, the husband starts begging him to help, because they have no money. Cheon Soo gets mad, but I’m happy, because the jaw clenching is pretty hot.

Suddenly we’re back in the ER as they wheel the woman in for surgery. Cheon Soo watches as Ji Hye preps. She points out how he and Jin Hee are similar in doing everything they can for the patient regardless of the circumstances. He denies it, saying he’s changed. She asks him if he’ll pay the bill for the woman. When he laughs, she says this is why he can’t marry. How cute.

Ah Reum dozes with her headphones on. She nudges her phone off the table and it’s caught by Yong Gyu the intern (Yoon Jong Hoon) who leaves her a drink. This would be cute, except he then tries to kiss her in her sleep. Chang Min shows up in time to stop it, and chases him off. She wakes up in time to see Chang Min walk away, and assumes that he left her the drink.

Cheon Soo and Jin Hee have a meeting about her resignation. He goes through everything he’s seen her do this week including the drunken phone calls, concluding she doesn’t want to quit. He rips up her resignation letter, and tells her he’ll fire her if he feels like it. She starts crying, and he asks why. She explains that she became a doctor with bad intentions, and he says that a doctor is someone who tries to save lives, which is what she did.

Chang Min visits Evil Mom to tell her to leave. She refuses to do it until Absent Dad shows up to take her home. She tells him to go meet Ah Reum, take her for dinner, and then have sex with her. He finally protests, but she overrides him by saying that everyone does it nowadays. He whines.

Jin Hee spots her dismissal paper on Cheon Soo’s desk. She flashes back to him ripping up her resignation. Before she can get upset, the phone rings. Evil Mom has gone into syncope (she fainted from heart trouble; I looked it up). Chang Min gets the call on his way out of the hospital, and turns back. He runs into Yong Gyu, and gives him the concert ticket, sending him in his place on his date with Ah Reum.

Chang Min gets to Evil Mom’s room, and finds her unconscious and being worked on. They decide to give her a pacemaker, with Chang Min helping, but he’s too nervous and can’t do it, so Jin Hee takes over. It’s a tense moment as Evil Mom’s heart stops, but they save her (drat!). The heart specialist arrives belatedly, and it turns out to be the evil doctor who gave Cheon Soo a hard time in the meeting about the tracheotomy patient. He tells them that the only reason Evil Mom survived was because she was hooked up to a heart monitor. Turns out Jin Hee was responsible for saving Evil Mom’s life.

Cheon Soo talks to Chang Min and Jin Hee, and he establishes that she saved Evil Mom’s life. Then he asks how she knew that Evil Mom had heart problems. Cheon Soo doesn’t get to hear the answer, but we do, as Chang Min explains to Evil Mom. The last time Evil Mom had a heart problem, she had nagged Jin Hee to make her heart friendly food. Rather than care that Jin Hee saved her life, Evil Mom takes issue with the word “nagging”, and says that Jin Hee was the reason she had heart problems in the first place. Cheon Soo and Jin Hee walk in before she can wind herself up again.

Cheon Soo tells Evil Mom that she’d be in ICU right now if not for Jin Hee, and asks for a thank you, as encouragement for Jin Hee. Evil Mom refuses on the basis that Jin Hee was just doing her job. The tension is thick in the air, and Chang Min and Jin Hee look like kids in the room while their parents fight. Cheon Soo looks suspicious of their relationship, but is more annoyed at Evil Mom’s rudeness. He leaves followed by Jin Hee.

Chang Min is clearly on his last nerve as his mom refuses to be discharged. He tells her to leave, and at least say thank you. She ignores him as per usual, and he ends by whining like an eight year old.

Jin Hee asks Cheon Soo about the dismissal notice. He asks her why she was so determined to help Evil Mom even after being humiliated by her. He tells her it’s the doctor’s instinct, and she should just suck it up and be a doctor.

Ji Hye comes out of her successful surgery on the financially challenged woman, and Cheon Soo asks her out to eat. Are we getting vibes? Is it too early? Don’t shoot me, but I like them together.

Ah Reum is at the concert when Yong Gyu shows up. Yong Gyu and Ah Reum bond over similar music tastes, then Yong Gyu explains who he got his concert ticket from. Ah Reum is pouty while Yong Gyu is cheerful.

Chang Min meanwhile went looking for Absent Dad in his office. Absent Dad is predictably absent, so he props himself on his desk, and shortly discovers Jin Hee’s gift. Lacking boundaries, he opens the card, but Absent Dad walks in before he can read it.

Chang Min tells him that Evil Mom was seriously ill, what with the heart problems, the anti-depressants and the injuries from her fall. Absent Dad fails to care, and sends a disappointed Chang Min away.

Chang Min reports back to Evil Mom about Absent Dad, and she gets annoyed. She tells him not to come to the hospital since the Evil Aunts are on their way, and to go see Ah Reum instead. As usual, he obeys.

Back at the concert, Ah Reum and Yong Gyu are waiting for the band to come on. Coincidentally, Cheon Soo and Ji Hye walk in for a drink. Jin Hee walks in right after, looking for her sister, Jin Ae (Jeon Soo Jin) who she finds onstage. Chang Min follows her in, looking for Ah Reum. If only Nurse Choi and the ER director showed up, the whole ER would be present (they don’t show up, FYI).

Jin Hee only has eyes for Jin Ae, and makes a beeline for her through the audience. The music grinds to a halt as Jin Hee gets on the stage, intent on taking Jin Ae home. Jin Ae and her band members try to fend off the righteous Jin Hee, and they finally succeed as Jin Ae takes off running, while her bandmate hangs on to Jin Hee. Jin Hee struggles to get away with a bar full of people looking on. The episode ends with a montage of everyone’s horrified faces as chaos erupts.


Poor Chang Min. He started out as an arrogant jerk, but with the presence of Evil Mom, he has morphed into a whiny eight year old. For all his arrogance, he’s unable to stop his mother from running roughshod over his life. Evil Mom seems to have no boundaries, what with slapping his ex-wife, and even going so far as telling him to bed women that he seemingly has no interest in (Ah Reum). He spends much of this episode trying to hold back the tornado that is his mom, and fails miserably. He can’t even apologize for her properly. He may turn out to be a decent human being yet, but we won’t know until Evil Mom is out of the picture.

Jin Hee, on the other hand, finally seems to have found an ally in Cheon Soo, who clearly recognizes glimmers of his old self in her. I know I should be rooting for him with Jin Hee, but I kind of like the vibes between him and fellow resident, Ji Hye (I don’t insist that everyone ends up with someone in a drama, but I can certainly enjoy the speculation along the way). In the meantime, I’m not sure why Jin Hee leapt on stage to drag her sister down, but it would make sense in light of her single-minded obsession with her own emotions. Maybe I’m over-analyzing (and by maybe, I mean definitely), but while her low impulse control and mood swings are entertaining to watch, they certainly don’t make for an entirely likeable character. But, back to Cheon Soo… what can I say? His appeal is growing by leaps and bounds, especially next to the alternately whiny and arrogant Chang Min.

Good going, drama! I’m still not bored.

Only 만

Emergency Couple (응급남녀)

 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21 || series review

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