Insurance salesman, Dae Young (Yoon Doo Joon) breaks up with his girlfriend from Season 1 for undisclosed reasons, and leaves Seoul for Sejong City. His immediate neighbour turns out to be Soo Ji (Seo Hyun Jin), a former classmate who practices a one-meal-a-day diet, but loves eating. To make up for her tormented childhood, Dae Young agrees to help Soo Ji bag her restrained co-worker with good specs, Sang Woo (Kwon Yool). Since this is part of the “Let’s Eat” franchise, there’s a creepy young man, a cheerful and cute young woman, and lots of orgasmic eating.
Junggugeo Kaenada 중국어 캐나다: ★★★
Only 만: ★★★
Side dish: There’s one thing we were surprised to find they didn’t eat on either edition of “Let’s Eat” and that’s a burger. Here’s a recipe for Sweet Barbecue Kim-cheese Burgers from Serious Eats that’s sure to tickle even Dae Young and Soo Ji’s picky taste buds.
Only 만: Another season of “Let’s Eat” ends, with another girlfriend for Goo Dae Young.
Junggugeo Kaenada 중국어 캐나다: The second season was popular enough that it looks likely that there will be a third season of “Let’s Eat”, and therefore, probably a third girlfriend for Dae Young. I shudder to think what they might do to the Pomeranian to turn him into Barassi 3.0.
But, enough speculation about the future. What did you like about season two of “Let’s Eat”?
Only: The food! The food porn in this season was pretty stellar, and I enjoyed the amount of variety they tried to pack into it. There were a lot of things I hadn’t heard of before that I now want to try.
I thought the acting was very good, from all three leads. They were all able to go from comedy to more emotional scenes with ease and they were very believable. For me, Kwon Yool, Yoon Doo Joon, and Seo Hyun Jin held up the story, even when the writing became overwrought.
Junggugeo Kaenada: I completely agree with you on both points. I usually started watching the show without being even remotely peckish, and then, the hunger pangs would hit as soon as the food porn began.
I liked that the second male lead, played by Kwon Yool, was a viable choice. Sang Woo started out kind of robotic, but he became quirky and charming as the series went on. Plus, he had a great relationship with the male lead. I enjoyed watching Sang Woo place Dae Young repeatedly in a headlock while using salty language.
Only: Sang Woo’s cursing was pretty entertaining. I think Sang Woo and Dae Young had the healthiest relationship on the show, until they fought over nothing, basically.
But, let’s go in order. What did you not like about season two?
Junggugeo Kaenada: Speaking of the fighting between Sang Woo and Dae Young over Soo Ji, I did not like how forced it felt. Before things fell apart, Sang Woo definitely had more romantic chemistry with Soo Ji than Dae Young, who was giving off a solid friend vibe. Suddenly, Dae Young is making moony eyes at Soo Ji, and Sang Woo is doing manipulative things to ward off Dae Young. Your first kiss with your girlfriend should not serve as a warning to your rival.
Only: Not only did it feel forced, I felt like it went on way too long. Sang Woo may have seemed like a viable option, but when we all know he and Soo Ji are going to break up, it’s kind of painful to watch them struggle through their relationship. Watching Soo Ji lie unconvincingly and be awkward around Sang Woo was not that much fun, and neither was watching Sang Woo’s increasingly desperate efforts to get through to her. Especially when you had Dae Young in the background looking longingly, and Soo Ji returning the look more and more. For what was meant to be light-hearted comedy about people’s everyday lives, it wasn’t really all that funny.
Junggugeo Kaenada: Exactly. When I compare the second season to the first one, I realize how much I missed the lighthearted tone of the first season. The mood of the second season became so weighed down by romantic angst that a frustrated Dae Young failed to even give his food lectures consistently.
Only: In fact, my opinion of the first season went up after watching this one. It was so mellow that I could enjoy the food and the comedy without feeling like it was a break from angst. There are things that I liked more in season two, but it really failed on that score.
Junggugeo Kaenada: The writers purposely mirrored the second season after the first season, so comparisons are inevitable. Joo Seung, the creepy young man of the second season was definitely worse than his counterpart, Kwang Suk, in the first season. Joo Seung did unforgivable things like attack a small animal and an old lady.
This season’s winsome and cute young woman, Hye Rim felt more like a side character than Jin Yi of the first season, because she was never directly involved in the main storyline. However, Hye Rim did not suddenly turn into a jealous bitch, which is always a big bonus for me.
Only: You know something’s gone wrong when what was meant to be a sympathetic character ends up in jail and you’re glad. Joo Seung had little to redeem him, though in retrospect neither did Kwang Suk from the first season. Somehow, Kwang Suk’s stalking didn’t feel as serious as Joo Seung’s creepiness. Again, probably because season one was so lighthearted that it was hard to get worked up.
I did enjoy old lady, Jeom Yi, though they spent so much time on her and Mi Ran in the last episode that I started to find them both annoying by the end.
Junggugeo Kaenada: Speaking of Mi Ran, for the majority of season two, I did not like her. I found her, Taek Soo, and In Na distasteful to watch, because they were consistently so nasty in the way they carried themselves, and towards others. In contrast, I actually did find season one’s nose-picking toady, Kyu Sik, and his browbeating wife, Kyung Mi, amusing to watch. Unattractive female lawyer, Do Yeon was a bad running joke in the first season, but I still did not find her as unpleasant as the second season’s side characters.
Only: In the end, my main issue with this season was how overwrought it ended up. I wasn’t terribly upset that Dae Young broke up with Soo Kyung from the first season, but I would have liked more closure on that. For a few episodes, I kept expecting Soo Kyung and Dae Young to have a reunion of sorts, while Soo Ji and Sang Woo got together. Then, from that, we dove straight into love triangle drama.
Junggugeo Kaenada: I give credit to the actors for convincing me in the end that Dae Young and Soo Ji belong together. Thanks to the abrupt transition to a love triangle scenario, I was very resistant to considering the possibility of Dae Young and Soo Ji as a couple. However, it became increasingly clear that Soo Ji was never going to feel like Sang Woo’s equal. Dae Young and Soo Ji were so comfortable with each other, and because the actors sobered up and made their mutual longing believable, I became supportive of their relationship. Plus, anything to stop Sang Woo’s increasingly desperate attempts to keep Soo Ji.
Only: Which was sad, because Sang Woo was very appealing. Credit to Kwon Yool for making him so cute, but also credit to Yoon Doo Joon for making Dae Young’s longing so believable. I just wish it didn’t put a stop to scenes of the two of them horsing around together, because that was really my favourite part of the show. Here’s hoping season three features Sang Woo finding a partner who’ll teach him about the joys of delicious food, rather than Dae Young finding a third food-obsessed girlfriend.
Junggugeo Kaenada: For me, the first season was a blur of delicious food, while the second season was a whirlwind of angst and masterful food porn. If there is a season three of “Let’s Eat”, I hope they will finally get the love story line right.