Side dish: We ate budae jjigae yesterday, but it turns out that it’s relatively simple to make at home. There’s better recipes with better explanations out there, but this video from students of Woosung Culinary Academy is hilarious, so it wins. Bear with the opening segment; it gets better after that.
Lee Gun (Jang Hyuk) unexpectedly encounters his ex-wife, Kim Mi Young (Jang Nara) while returning her favourite painting, thus revealing himself as the actual buyer. When Mi Young demands to know his reasons for the charade, Gun decides to act the jerk in the name of noble idiocy. Not surprisingly, Mi Young kicks him out.
Meanwhile, poor Daniel (Choi Jin Hyuk) arrives looking for Mi Young. He spots Gun leaving her office, and decides to call it a night without revealing himself to either Gun or Mi Young. The next morning, Daniel goes to see Mi Young, and she can’t stop apologizing. She feels compelled to break her work contract and leave Korea early after the revelation that Gun was the buyer of her painting.
There are more apologies exchanged when Gun has a meal with ex-girlfriend, Kang Se Ra (Wang Ji Won) during which more alcohol than food is consumed. Gun proposes ending their friendship, because he realizes that Se Ra still carries a torch for him. Gun is resigned to the idea that what is not meant to be will never be.
After the successful launch of Mi Young’s paintings on various commercial products, her friend, Jeon Ji Yeon (Park Hee Von) comes for a visit. While talking about matchmaking for Mi Young, Ji Yeon reveals to her that Gun is single and has been single for the past three years. Ji Yeon flashes back to seeing Gun acting like a boyfriend to Se Ra, and is perplexed.
Se Ra goes home with a bag of beer, and not wanting to drink alone, ends up imbibing in a park with neighbourhood oppa, Daniel. Se Ra laments about having stood by Gun through his illness, thus inadvertently exposing Gun’s secret to Daniel. Se Ra ends up revealing all to him.
Mi Young finds a note from Gun tucked in the painting he returned. In it, Gun (as Lee Young Ja, the buyer of the painting) admits that the painting brought back his happiest memories. This inconsistency with Gun’s jerky comments sends Mi Young running to her smartphone to review her text message correspondence with Gun while he was under the guise of an older woman. Again, Mi Young is perplexed.
Mi Young goes marching into Gun’s office, unaware that Gun is dictating his final wishes to his lawyer before his mind and health take a turn for the worse. She returns the money he paid for her painting then challenges him about his letter. Gun kicks her out rather than answer her questions.
Gun’s lawyer, who is Mi Young’s former boss, had felt trepidation about keeping Mi Young in the dark. He catches Mi Young as she is leaving Gun’s office, and slips a recording of Gun’s dictation of his final will in her purse.
While various people around Gun speak about his genetic disease in hushed tones, Mi Young goes to meet with Se Ra. Se Ra admits that she created the divorce document that caused the rift between Mi Young and Gun. Like Gun’s Lawyer, Se Ra stops just short of revealing Gun’s illness to Mi Young.
Mi Young and Gun repeatedly come into contact with each other, exchanging hurt looks and thinly veiled resentment. Mi Young does an interview before a live audience as Gun watches, during which she gives him credit for planting the idea for the successful ad campaign. Later, the couple continue to maintain a distance between them at the restaurant of Mi Young’s mother, compelling mom to scold both of them.
The next day, while packing, Mi Young finds the digital recorder slipped by Gun’s lawyer into her purse. Daniel walks in and overhears part of Gun’s message before interrupting Mi Young’s thoughts. As Daniel is driving Mi Young to a final meeting with her family before her departure, he decides to turn the car around and take her to Gun’s home. Like everyone else, Daniel knows about Gun’s illness, but refuses to be the one to break the news to Mi Young.
While Gun is visiting the memorial of his parents, and adding Dog Poopie’s portrait to the display, Mi Young visits with Gun’s grandmother who is delighted to have her ex-granddaughter-in-law back. While waiting for Gun, Mi Young decides to revisit their marital suite, and is reminded of the happier times of their marriage.
Meanwhile, Gun’s grandmother is told to turn on her television by Secretary Tak, and thus, learns that Gun has called a press conference to elaborate on the revelation that he suffers from a genetic disease.
Upstairs, Mi Young enters Gun’s man attic, and is shocked to find the baby crib containing all of their precious baby items. She decides to watch a video of Gun off his laptop, and finally learns the truth behind why Gun abandoned her and Dog Poopie.
Mi Young breaks down into sobs watching Gun, as Gun’s press conference is about to begin.
Only 만: This episode was such a relief after the last few stagnant episodes.
Junggugeo Kaenada 중국어 캐나다: Yes, even though they teased out the reveal of Gun’s illness to Mi Young, there was always a sense that she would learn the truth by the end of the episode.
Only: It’s true. It was frustrating to watch everyone hint at what they knew without coming right out and saying it, especially Se Ra and Lawyer Hong, but it was mitigated by the fact that the plot was actually moving forward.
Junggugeo Kaenada: Actually, kudos to the actors for preventing the entire situation from becoming a farce. With so many people meeting Mi Young only to knowingly demur about the truth behind Gun’s abandonment of Mi Young, the repetition would have started coming across as a mean joke.
Only: Finding out the way she did was good on one level, but disappointing on another. Gun was way more honest in those videos than he would have been otherwise, but it was a let-down that he didn’t reveal the truth himself. Though I guess that’s consistent with the noble idiocy that’s been dragging on for so long now.
Junggugeo Kaenada: Speaking of Gun, are we to assume that he is now suffering from Huntington’s Disease? There were times when I could barely concentrate on this episode, because I was loudly ranting about the writers’ choice to have Gun suffer from Huntington’s.
Only: And deal with it so poorly after having made the choice. I don’t know a whole lot about Huntington’s, but it’s clear the writers know even less. Especially since they’ve stopped referring to it by name, and are now referring to it as just a genetic disease.
Frankly, I find it lame that they’re using it as a plot device like this, when they don’t know what they’re talking about. As a result, we’ve spent the past few episodes dealing with Gun’s noble idiocy rather than the illness, which would have been more interesting.
Junggugeo Kaenada: That’s the kind of choice that can ruin a series. As you have suggested, will Gun’s chaebol money buy him a magical cure to ensure a happy ending?
Only: Maybe snail mucus is a cure for Huntington’s? I’m told it does wonders for the skin.
Junggugeo Kaenada: It turns out that the cure for creepiness is to surrender to the inevitable. Now that Daniel has accepted that Mi Young will never love him, he has returned to being appealing.
Only: He was super cute this episode.
Junggugeo Kaenada: His hair has definitely improved, as Choi Jin Hyuk was never meant to be a redhead. Unfortunately, his wardrobe has gone from flamboyantly preppy to more muted colours and t-shirts.
Only: Yes, he’s very casual these days, but it matches the change in tone of the show. I guess it wouldn’t really work to have unhappy characters dressed in crayon colours. As it is, Mi Young seems to be the only one who’s allowed to be colourful.
Junggugeo Kaenada: We have been admiring her vibrant red skirts.
Only: The post-time skip Mi Young is very stylish. She can’t seem to smile much, but her clothes are great. Actually, I have to point out the fantastic Hawaiian shirt Mi Young’s mom was sporting during the restaurant scene.
Junggugeo Kaenada: It does not appear that there will be an extension so we have three more episodes in which to get the angst and crying out of the way. Hopefully, there will be enough time to return to unadulterated, crazy Gun.
Only: I hope so. I’ve missed that laugh.
Here’s a screen shot of the only happy people in “Fated to Love You”: Mi Young’s ridiculous family.
Fated to Love You (운명처럼 널 사랑해)