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Do Kyung (Eric Mun) is less than thrilled to discover that Hae Young (Seo Hyun Jin) has become the new tenant of a refurbished storage room in his house. He bluntly orders Hae Young to find another place to live, and she attempts to convince him that their living arrangement is purely coincidental. Unbeknownst to her, Do Kyung knows that Hae Young speaks the truth, but he does not want to live with the innocent victim of his vengeance.
The next day, Do Kyung and Hae Young meet with the landlord, but the old man refuses to kick Hae Young out. Do Kyung offers Hae Young money to break her lease, and she takes offense, thinking that he is scared of her neediness after she confessed to being dumped the day before her wedding. She angrily warns him not to reveal her secret to anyone before storming home to reinforce the door separating their apartments.
Do Kyung goes to his doctor to report having foreseen his living arrangement with Hae Young. The doctor continues to be dismissive until Do Kyung successfully predicts the doctor being surprised by a window cleaner. The doctor finally takes Do Kyung’s situation seriously, insisting that Do Kyung is not crazy, but Do Kyung walks out.
Do Kyung goes back to work recording street sounds, but he cannot stop having visions of Hae Young. When he returns to his office, Do Kyung avoids his mother who is having trouble with a screenwriter failing to meet his nerd potential. Meanwhile, Hae Young asks her unsympathetic co-workers if they would treat her as Do Kyung has, when their boss, Soo Kyung (Ye Ji Won) arrives, and everyone scatters.
Hae Young attempts to reach Do Kyung to arrange for contractor access to his side of the door. When she leaves a message with one of his teammates, Do Kyung’s brother, Hoon (Heo Jeong Min) mistakes her for Do Kyung’s former fiancée, who left him on their wedding day. He angrily calls Hae Young back to threaten her with violence if she ever contacts Do Kyung again. Do Kyung intercepts the call and, after receiving verbal abuse from Hae Young, physically abuses Hoon.
Do Kyung recalls his fiancée, Hae Young (Jeon Hye Bin) talking derisively about the high school classmate who shared her name. He hears Hae Young return home, and to her surprise, Do Kyung emerges from their shared door to apologize for Hoon’s rudeness, and offers to move out. When Hae Young tries to pick a fight, he apologizes and retreats.
Do Kyung’s friend, Jin Sang (Kim Ji Seok) is freaking out over Hae Young’s close proximity when an intoxicated Soo Kyung returns home. As Do Kyung’s sister stumbles around the apartment, Jin Sang reports that it will be difficult to bail out Hae Young’s former fiancé, Tae Jin (Lee Jae Yoon) out of jail unless Chairman Jang testifies as a witness.
Meanwhile in jail, Tae Jin finds out from his lawyer that a drunken Jin Sang revealed that Tae Jin’s life was destroyed as a result of a misunderstanding. Tae Jin directs his lawyer to investigate Do Kyung.
Hae Young calls up her mother, Duk Yi (Kim Ki Kyung) to ask why she hasn’t checked in on the daughter she kicked out. Duk Yi acts indifferent and hangs up on her. Little does Hae Young know, Duk Yi and her father, Kyung Soo (Lee Han Wi) are outside her new apartment to assess its safety, and inadvertently yank the security bars off the window. Do Kyung catches Duk Yi and Kyung Soo sneaking away with the security bars, and relieves them of it out of pity. At home, Duk Yi cries while proposing to Kyung Soo that they retrieve their daughter.
The next day, Hae Young is reminded of a reservation she and Tae Jin had made long ago at an restaurant with an amazing view. Unable to entice a friend to come along, Hae Young dines alone with her memories of happier times when Tae Jin attempted to take off his shirt and they rolled around together on her bed.
By the time Hae Young joins her former classmates for drinks, she has wiped away her tears and is back to being audacious about her cancelled wedding. They recall the time she went head-to-head in a class election with the more popular Hae Young, and only got a single vote. Her classmate (Yoon Jong Hoon in a cameo) claims to be the one who cast the vote in her favour.
After a night of clubbing, Hae Young has lost her key, and walks into the night followed by a shadowy man. After being troubled by his visions of her, Do Kyung tracks Hae Young down, and arrives just in time to scare the suspicious man away. An unwitting Hae Young disdainfully says the words that Do Kyung foresaw.
Do Kyung lets Hae Young into her apartment through their shared door, then invites her over for a warm drink when her stove fails to turn on. She reveals to Do Kyung that the single vote she received in the high school election was actually cast by herself. Even the classmate who nominated her had voted for the prettier Oh Hae Young.
While Hae Young has confidence in herself, she wishes that someone would tell her that being dumped the day before her wedding is no big deal. As she stares pleadingly at Do Kyung, he recalls his own traumatic wedding experience. Just as Hae Young is interpreting his silence for a rejection, Do Kyung expresses the pain he felt at being abandoned on his wedding day. He tells her to take a break then pick herself back up before playing her a recording of rain. Hae Young thanks him and cries.
The next day, Hae Young bikes out and throws her wedding album into the Han River. She finds strength in having a shared trauma with Do Kyung. She vows to love without reservation next time. When she runs into Do Kyung, Hae Young announces that she has taken the day off to find a new rental apartment. She is taken aback when she sees the security bar back on her window, unaware that it is thanks to Do Kyung.
After a professional triumph, Hoon runs to meet his girlfriend, Anna (Heo Young Ji) who throws herself into his arms. He takes her to the studio to demonstrate the magic of sound engineering as taught to him by Do Kyung. An impressed Anna attacks him.
Back at home, Do Kyung feels compelled to send himself flying into Hae Young’s apartment when a delivery man attempts to come on to her. Once they are alone, an incredulous Hae Young tells Do Kyung to finish eating the black bean noodles. Instead, Do Kyung goes to retrieve a pair of his shoes to place at her doorstep to give the illusion of a male presence, then proposes that they both stay. Hae Young watches in shocked silence as Do Kyung closes back up the doorway, and must admit to being impressed.
Hoon and Anna arrive home at the same time as Jin Sang, and they all struggle to understand Soo Kyung spouting French gibberish. A relaxed Do Kyung watches on and laughs, having decided to follow his doctor’s advice to just go with the flow when it comes to his visions of Hae Young. Suddenly, Do Kyung has a premonition of his ex-fiancée’s return. Sure enough, during a drive out with her friend, Hae Young spots her prettier namesake running in a road race.
I am really appreciating how nuanced “Oh Hae Young Again” has been while retaining all the Kdrama tropes. There is the usual forced shared accommodations, initial friction and misunderstanding between the leads. However, the male lead is not being a complete robotic bastard. The female lead is not a pushover or mindlessly bent on retribution. They both waver between being the better person, and giving in to their petty emotions, like normal people do.
Also like normal adults, Do Kyung and Hae Young had real past relationships. Both are pictured being sexually playful with their respective fiancée and fiancé. I was especially impressed with how hot Hae Young and Tae Jin were with each other in the flashback. It is nice that the show did not neuter the couple.
Best of all, Hae Young and Do Kyung have found a common connection that did not feel forced, and actually had some heart. Only time will tell if this strong emotional connection will be joined by some sexual chemistry.
My only quibble about this episode is that Hae Young appears to be the constant target of sexual predators. How many creepy men must Do Kyung save her from? However, he does not have to save her from the low self-esteem that seems to plague many Kdrama heroines, and that comes as a great relief.