Bubblegum episode 5 recap

Side dish: What do you do when you have a ton of oranges? Preserve them as Orange Marmalade! Here’s a recipe from Food Network’s Alton Brown.

Episode Recap

Suk Joon (Lee Jong Hyuk) watches in disbelief as his ex-girlfriend, Haeng Ah (Jung Ryeo Won) and the man she grew up with, Ri Hwan (Lee Dong Wook) kiss. Sitting in a car nearby, Yi Seul (Park Hee Von) is also a witness to the man she is infatuated with, kissing another woman.

The spell is finally broken when Haeng Ah suddenly pushes Ri Hwan away. Suk Joon approaches and simply returns Haeng Ah’s cell phone to her, saying that he’ll call tomorrow before walking away. Haeng Ah appears resigned about failing to fool her ex, but she fearfully steps away from Ri Hwan, and orders him not to touch her. After she leaves, Ri Hwan presses his lips against the back of his hand while Yi Seul grips the steering wheel.

Bubblegum 5.2

Tae Hee (Kim Ri Na) receives a call from a concerned Ri Hwan just as Haeng Ah arrives, and quickly dismisses him. As the women eat tteokbokki, Haeng Ah admits that she and Ri Hwan kissed. Tae Hee bullies her for details until she manages to get a flustered Haeng Ah to admit that she and Ri Hwan could be a couple. Tae Hee predicts that everything will descend into love triangle hell, and she hopes that Ri Hwan will be the one left out, because she fears that Haeng Ah will get hurt if she enters a relationship with Ri Hwan.

Early the next morning, Haeng Ah asks to meet with Ri Hwan to talk. En route, he ends up with a back seat full of oranges after helping an elderly couple collect them from the road. Haeng Ah accepts a bag of the oranges from Ri Hwan, but repeatedly rejects his proffered coat along with any reference to their kiss. Haeng Ah proposes pretending that the kiss never happened, but cannot even bring herself to say the word, “kiss”. Teasing aside, Ri Hwan bluntly states that the kiss reflects his feelings. Haeng Ah runs away as Ri Hwan entreats her to think about how she feels.

Bubblegum 5.3

Ri Hwan visits his mother, Sun Young (Bae Jong Ok) and slyly asks about the vacant apartment on the third floor of their home without explaining his desire to provide Haeng Ah with a home away from her ex. Ri Hwan is briefly distracted by items in his mother’s closet like an old dress with a stain, which she decides to keep, and a scandalous leopard skin bikini, before he notices some unlabeled medication. She ignores his question about the pills, and they are soon interrupted by the arrival of his colleague/flatmate, Ji Hoon (Lee Seung Joon).

Ri Hwan and Ji Hoon have a breakfast of baked goods as opposed to the usual hangover soup, because Ji Hoon has not touched any alcohol in 10 hours – roughly since the time Tae Hee slapped him. Ri Hwan reveals that he kissed Haeng Ah, and Ji Hoon is not surprised. Ri Hwan admits that he thought it would be weird to kiss Haeng Ah, but he is thrilled to discover that he liked it.

Bubblegum 5.4

Meanwhile, Yi Seul leaves Haeng Ah waiting as she thinks of Ri Hwan and looks up “gifts that a man cannot refuse at any price” on the internet. After Haeng Ah’s phobia of medical environments drives her outside, Yi Seul finally admits her into her office. Haeng Ah apologizes for her drunken behaviour, and promises to replace the designer bag that she ruined. She offers macarons and oranges from Ri Hwan before Yi Seul’s hostility compels her to leave. Yi Seul promptly throws away the macarons, but keeps the oranges.

Outside Yi Seul’s dental office, Haeng Ah runs into radio DJ Se Young (Kim Jung Nan) and junior team member, Joon Soo (An Woo Yeon), but does not appear to notice that her two colleagues were holding hands. After passing on oranges to the secret couple, a cheerful Haeng Ah is on her way, leaving Se Young and Joon Soo to wonder why she is so happy. Later, Se Young speculates on the reason for Haeng Ah’s cheer with Yi Seul, and when it is suggested that Haeng Ah might be dating Ri Hwan, Yi Seul takes her frustration out on Se Young’s mouth.

Bubblegum 5.5

Radio station manager, Dong Il (Park Won Sang) decides to bother Tae Hee with questions at work like how she managed to become friends with someone like Haeng Ah who is her polar opposite. It turns out that they were dorm roommates, and despite instantly hating Haeng Ah’s persistent cheer, it eventually won her over.

After Sun Young refuses her concerned colleague’s suggestion that they do some medical testing into her lapses in memory, she receives a phone call. She reassures the caller that her son has not considered any potential brides other than Yi Seul. After hanging up, Sun Young calls Haeng Ah, presumably to reiterate her warning not to get inappropriately friendly with Ri Hwan. However, the call is interrupted by a staff member bringing Sun Young charts that she had requested, and she promptly forgets her phone conversation. She only remembers the phone call when she receives a text from a puzzled Haeng Ah. Sun Young’s vision blurs, and then, she finds a melted ice cream in her desk drawer. This finally scares Sun Young into agreeing to testing, but after hours in order to maintain confidentiality.

Bubblegum 5.6

Ji Hoon may be off the alcohol, but at work, he sings sad songs to a bottle of ginseng like he is intoxicated. As he heads out, Ri Hwan offers to tell Tae Hee about his new sobriety, and Ji Hoon cheers up considerably. Sadly, a drunk Ji Hoon is later seen stumbling up Tae Hee’s front steps in the middle of the night.

While having lunch at her uncle and aunt’s restaurant, Haeng Ah ignores Ri Hwan’s phone call. However, Ri Hwan manages to reach her through her young cousin’s cell phone, then pops up at the window. Haeng Ah tries desperately to dismiss their kiss as a fantasy and attempts to escape before being intercepted by Ri Hwan. He acknowledges that this change in their relationship is sudden for her, and that she is still recovering from her break up with Suk Joon, but repeats his plea for her to think about dating him.

Bubblegum 5.7

There are not enough listener submitted letters for the advice segment of the radio show, so the staff must come up with additional ones, preferably taken from their own lives. Unbeknownst to the lab coat wearing guest, he identifies Tae Hee’s mistrust of Ji Hoon, advises Se Young to love a man regardless of his financial situation, calls Suk Joon stupid and incapable of being in a relationship, and tells Haeng Ah that if a single kiss with a long-time friend prompts feelings, then they were probably already on their way to something more. After lab coat man predicts that the letter writer is well on her way to dating the friend, Tae Hee gives Haeng Ah a pointed look.

Yi Seul arrives at Ri Hwan’s clinic with a more modest gift: a couple tea set. Her ankle is now fully healed, so with no reason for her to return, Yi Seul eagerly attempts make a dinner date. When Ri Hwan gently tries to turn her down then admit his feelings for Haeng Ah, she interrupts him with more frantic dinner planning. Ri Hwan apologies for misleading her, claiming that he never expected her to fall for him, but for someone better. Yi Seul’s insecurities come out again in the face of rejection.

Bubblegum 5.8

Just as Yi Seul is leaving Ri Hwan, she receives an urgent call about her ailing grandfather, and breaks one of the tea cups as she rushes out. Ri Hwan drops her off at her grandfather’s building just ahead of Yi Seul’s glamourous mother (Park Joon Geum). Mom fails to recognize Ri Hwan and is furious that her daughter is seen with some unknown man. She berates Yi Seul about her appearance, and for the first time, Yi Seul loses her temper, and storms out. Alone with her sleeping grandfather, who routinely asks Yi Seul what she wants, Yi Seul quietly tells him that she want Ri Hwan.

Meanwhile, a lonely love triangle plays out. Though Haeng Ah refuses to answer Ri Hwan’s phone calls, she is repeatedly reminded of him as she encounters various objects in her apartment.

Suk Joon attempts to reach Haeng Ah by phone, but has no more success than Ri Hwan. When Suk Joon arrives at their apartment building, he rings Haeng Ah’s door bell.

Ri Hwan gets out of his car, and calls Haeng Ah again. Though he gets no answer, Ri Hwan starts beaming as he notices Haeng Ah standing before him.

Bubblegum 5.9
Bubblegum 5.10


The “Bubblegum” cast of characters that amused me just a couple of episodes ago have become so pitiful! Poor Yi Seul has resorted to the faint hope that she can buy Ri Hwan’s love even in the face of irrefutable evidence that he loves another. Ji Hoon’s despair at losing Tae Hee drives him to drink, the very reason she gave up on him in the first place. Even the determined Suk Joon has faded into a ghost who floats around on the periphery, unable to stop haunting the places that Haeng Ah used to be.

The only hope to be found is in Ri Hwan’s dogged determination to make his kiss with Haeng Ah be a turning point in their relationship, and Haeng Ah’s comedic struggle to deny and avoid confrontation with Ri Hwan. Though this scenario repeated itself more than I liked this episode, I was still surprised at how quickly Haeng Ah gave in to Ri Hwan.

I have reservations about the pressure that Ri Hwan applied on Haeng Ah while claiming to understand her difficult situation. Yet, I can’t help but find myself somewhat thrilled at Haeng Ah’s decision to give her relationship with Ri Hwan a go, because Lee Dong Wook plays his character so sweetly, Jung Ryeo Won makes her character funny, but heartfelt, and they have great chemistry together.

The only relationship with minimal drama that I can get fully behind is the one between Se Young and Joon Soo. I admit that I have a fondness for noona romances, but the two of them are quite entertaining in their brief appearances, and surprisingly cute together.

Bubblegum 5.11

Bubblegum (풍선껌)


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


  1. Our dentist was kindda scary in this. Thank god I don’t have an appointment with her.
    I loved the red and black jacket that our female lead wore it this episode.
    The initial trailer made it look like their transition from friends to lover would be awkward but things seems to move pretty smoothly.
    I am excited to see what happens next


  2. This ep takes all the Chingus around the main Leads, to reveal the “True feelings” of the OTP, supporting casts splendid acting did great jobs in grounding their own characters and even bringing out strengths and weakness of RH and HA. That’s how great writings of KD writers did, they write in powerhouse sidelines characters, eg. the best-friends, the roommates, the colleagues, the uncles aunties, the jealous second leads, not just spins around the Main OTP.
    Here, we find ourselves a fanged and claws TaeHee which we have started to love, trusting her to bring HA out of her shells to face her true feelings. We have the Ji-Hoon which we trusted that by the end of the show, he will be sobered enough to win back the Taehee. We have the Secret Gardens Family which warmed our hearts, as they acted as the Family that they should have, better than a blood-lined real family. And we also have the ahjusshi Manager Jo which is the One chingu that can wake Sukjoon up a little, the only unique kind of “superior” you can find in KD, that you can bite and stared dagger at him. Even the invited Guess for Q/A session was another Icing top the Cake, to wake the scarred, scared and shaken HA to face her own real feelings.
    But i just gotten moooooore piss off by YS. pls don’t get angry with me, i will prefer that she take on a little of Sang-ye of Twenty Again, willing to back off and cheers on her beloved one to live on “happily ever after” with his one true love. actually we start ep 1 by sympathising with her, hoping her heart won’t be too broken. but her banging her bitter on the macaroons and someone else’s teeths…ENOUGH!


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