Is it harder to forgive, or to ask for forgiveness? With his perfect world turned upside down, Hyun-woo struggles to deal with the aftermath of discovering his wife’s affair. But for as difficult a time as he’s having, there’s someone else who might be hurting more. Hyun-woo may find it difficult to forgive, but he’ll have to be careful not to hurt others in his quest to avenge his own pain.
EPISODE 5 RECAP
We rewind to the start of the day, and Soo-yeon is at her in-law’s house, making breakfast and getting Joon-soo ready for school. As she helps her son get dressed, she thinks back to when Hyun-woo had confronted her and Sun-woo in the hotel room. After Hyun-woo left, Sun-woo had received a phone call and departed as well, leaving Soo-yeon alone in the room.
In the present, little Joon-soo brings his mother back to reality when he gets his head stuck in his turtle neck. He asks Soo-yeon if he can go to an art class that one of his friends attends, and she promises to sign him up for it, earning a big smile from her son.
Picking up where we left off last week, Hyun-woo charges into the office where his wife’s lover works. Directed to a conference room, he stands nervously when Sun-woo arrives.
Hyun-woo starts to demand answers from the other man, but he’s interrupted when the lights suddenly cut off, and in trots a long line of employees with party hats and a cake. Heh, apparently it’s Sun-woo’s birthday, and Hyun-woo finds himself surrounded by a crowd of workers all singing to their boss.
Sun-woo uneasily blows out his candles and smiles, while Hyun-woo is relegated to the side of the well-wishers. Stunned and with no other option, Hyun-woo joins in the clapping. To make it even more ridiculous, Hyun-woo is pushed to the front for the most awkward birthday photo ever. (Say “kimchi!”)
Later, Hyun-woo relates the events to Yoon-ki and Joon-young, and both are gobsmacked to hear that he not only stood aside as his wife’s lover had a birthday party, but that he actually took a picture with the man.
Yoon-ki and Joon-young call Hyun-woo crazy, and instruct him to confront Sun-woo again with a fist to the face. Joon-young illustrates the advice with a punch, only for Yoon-ki to correct his form, demonstrating with a punch of his own. Soon, the two are in a full-on pantomime fight, and Hyun-woo, shaking his head at their antics, walks away. Neither notice.
At her work, Soo-yeon tries to get Joon-soo signed up for the art classes he requested. She has to nearly beg one of the other mothers, especially when the woman says that she’d be more inclined to help if Soo-yeon took the time to hang out with the other mothers more often.
Soon after, Soo-yeon receives some more bad news: She’s being taken off a big project that she’s been leading at the request of the client. Oh, it looks like the client is none other than Sun-woo’s company, and he’s the one who requested she be taken off the project.
To make matters worse, during the meeting with her boss, Soo-yeon misses a call from one of the mothers she was trying to contact. Afterward, she stares at the missed call, clearly overwhelmed with everything.
Hyun-woo’s team has found a new couple to interview, and everyone watches a filmed interview with the cuckolded husband. Bo-young suggests opening their program with interviews of the wives who were unfaithful.
When Hyun-woo points out it’d be difficult to find one of those women — let alone to get them to agree to being interviewed — one of the staff members says that there are a number of “infidelity matching apps” that have become available for cheating spouses looking for other adulterers to meet with.
They decide to sign up one of the men to the app service so that they can arrange a meeting with one of the women looking for an affair. When they wonder which of the men looks the most like someone who would use the app, everyone turns to Hyun-woo. Heh. Bo-young snaps his picture and gets to work creating Hyun-woo’s infidelity profile.
Yoon-ki’s secretary/mole ambushes him as soon as he steps out of this office, grinning as she informs him that his wife has signed up for flower arranging classes right here in the neighborhood. Yoon-ki grimaces a smile and grits out how great it will be that his wife can visit his office so easily. Retreating back to his office, he whines that he feels caged in, complaining that he has no joy anymore.
Just then, Yoon-ki sees a woman standing in the corner of his office, her back turned to him. Assuming she’s a client, he jumps up and immediately starts flirting, until he notices that not only is her skin very cold, but the woman is actually floating. He leaps back in horror as the ghost’s pretty face morphs into a grisly mask, eventually screaming himself awake at the desk where he’d dozed off.
Moaning that he hasn’t met with a woman in so long that he’s suffering withdrawal hallucinations, Yoon-ki slowly turns his head, only to realize that he’s surrounded by female ghosts. He huddles on his desk, whimpering. (That was random.)
A thoroughly disgruntled Hyun-woo gets ready for his “affair” with a woman the infidelity app matched him with. He grumbles that he’s the team leader, so why should he have to do this? Joon-young cheerfully replies that he’s too young, though he shuts up at the look his hyung sends him.
The team gives Hyun-woo special glasses with a recorder in the lenses and sends him on his way, promising that the woman they paired him with is young and pretty.
Hyun-woo heads to the café to meet his date, only to find that the woman is definitely a few years older than her profile picture. Hyun-woo nervously sits down, and the enthusiastic philandering woman eagerly sits right next to him, getting very handsy in the process.
Hyun-woo tries to subtly ask a few interview questions, but journalism ethics go out the window when the woman makes a grab for his derrière, exclaiming over how nicely toned it is. Pfft.
Hyun-woo leaps up and desperately whisper/yells into his hidden mic for his team to come to his rescue while his date coos, asking if he wants to head straight to a hotel.
Yoon-ki visits his wife at her flower arranging class, fibbing that he recently developed a pollen allergy to try and dissuade her from taking the classes. Coughing from his “allergies,” Yoon-ki makes for the exit, but he stops on a dime when the stunning instructor walks into the room.
The film crew sniggers as they watch the footage that Hyun-woo got of his “date.” Joon-young earns himself another glare when he argues that if Hyun-woo had just let that woman touch his butt, then they could have gotten more information out of her.
His part done, Hyun-woo gets up to leave, but stops to address the team. Annoyed that the husbands they’ve selected were all cowering and victimized, he tells them to make sure that it doesn’t seem like it’s always the husband’s fault. “These women aren’t cheating because of their husbands. They just like any man besides their husband. Let’s not turn the innocent husbands into sinners.” So much for objectivity.
After Hyun-woo departs, Joon-young proposes the team use the infidelity app one more time to interview someone else, offering himself as the “interviewer.” Bo-young asks if his wife won’t mind him going on a date with another woman, but Joon-young brushes it off, saying that his wife will understand because this is work.
At the flower arranging school, Yoon-ki sneaks in to find the instructor by herself. He introduces himself as Ara’s husband, and asks if he can take a class as well, claiming that he wants to make an arrangement for his wife as a birthday present. The teacher agrees, though Yoon-ki reminds her that it will have to be kept a secret.
Yoon-ki sneaks in the observation that the woman is working so late that it seems like she doesn’t have a husband waiting for her at home. She admits that she’s divorced, and Yoon-ki cheerfully announces that he’ll see her in class.
That night, the teacher heads to her car and finds a registration violation sticker on her car. Before she even has the chance to worry, Yoon-ki arrives around the corner. Being the sweet and helpful man that he is (cough cough), Yoon-ki helps remove the sticker and promises to register the car for her. The woman stares after him, already a little star-struck.
Hyun-woo returns to an empty house that night. As he wanders around the darkened (and messy) apartment, he sees visions of his wife making the bed or cooking his favorite foods, always with a smile for him. The memories fade, and Hyun-woo is left alone again.
Soo-yeon and Joon-soo are still staying with Hyun-woo’s mother. Joon-soo asks his mom about the art classes, and Soo-yeon says she’s trying to enroll him. The observant boy assures her that if it’s too hard, then he doesn’t have to go. He says that Dad told him not to give his mom a hard time, and that it was their job to protect her. His words bring tears to Soo-yeon’s eyes.
Unable to sleep, Hyun-woo searches for a movie to watch, but instead finds a small gift box. He stares at the leather wallet inside and remembers the birthday party that he unintentionally attended for Sun-woo. Coming to the conclusion that his wife must have bought the gift as a birthday present for her lover, Hyun-woo throws the wallet and screams in frustration.
At the office, the team wires Joon-young in preparation for his meeting with a new cheating wife. Bo-young puts the video glasses on for him, and Joon-young leans down right in her face and jokes, “I’m a good-looking man up close, right?” Bo-young agrees, saying that he looks just like one of the guys these adulterous women meet. Well, he was asking for that.
Yoon-ki has yet another planned/serendipitous meeting with the flower arrangement teacher, conveniently arriving just in time to help her with the broken lock on her door.
Newly enraged at finding his wife’s gift for her lover, Hyun-woo waits in the lobby of Sun-woo’s building, his nervous pacing drawing the attention of a security guard. Sun-woo enters the building and immediately spots Hyun-woo waiting for him. Hyun-woo angrily walks towards the other man, fist closed, but the security guard also marches forward. Scared, Hyun-woo settles for bumping against Sun-woo’s shoulder before awkwardly running out of the building.
Soo-yeon receives a text from one of the moms that they made space for Joon-soo in the art class. She happily texts back her thanks to the group thread, but immediately the other women send messages hinting that it’s so hard to pick up their kids every day. Sufficiently guilt-tripped, Soo-yeon reluctantly volunteers to pick up the other children.
Yoon-ki has his first flower arranging class, and the teacher looks completely smitten as Yoon-ki gushes about how his wife means everything to him. His plan plays out beautifully as the teacher asks him, “Do you know what kind of men women are most attracted to? It’s men they want to steal.”
Still playing the faithful husband, Yoon-ki turn away, but silently counts to three and smiles as the teacher pulls him around towards her. The two kiss, and Yoon-ki can add yet another notch to his player’s belt.
Joon-young attends his own interview/date, but sits frozen with nerves and staring at the pretty woman he’s meeting. Bo-young snaps into his earpiece to question the woman and not fall for her, so Joon-young shakes off his shock. The clandestine interview goes well until the woman notes that this must be Joon-young’s first time given all the questions.
When she asks about his own situation, Joon-young freezes again, and Bo-young urges him to make something up. Slowly, Joon-young tells the woman that his wife ran away three days after their honeymoon. The rest of the team moans that the story is too fantastical to believe, but Bo-young seems to wonder if it’s the truth.
Yoon-ki is busy reminiscing about his new conquest when Ara visits his office. She notes the rose smell, and Yoon-ki anxiously hides his lips, which she notices. Ara immediately heads to the arranging class and signs up for additional classes. But when the teacher steps outside, she grins to see Yoon-ki by the door. The two start going at it, just feet away from Ara.
Soo-yeon meets with Sun-woo at his office, both looking miserable and guilty. Soo-yeon gently says that it would have been better if he’d warned her before taking her off the project, but Sun-woo answers that he thought it best if they avoided contact with each other.
Sun-woo tells Soo-yeon that Hyun-woo came to see him, which shocks her. He smiles slightly as he says that Soo-yeon’s husband seems like a good man. He apologizes again for taking her off the project, regretful that things turned out this way.
Hyun-woo thinks about his second failed attempt to confront Sun-woo, sighing heavily as he fails to notice the sideways glances from Bo-young and Joon-young. The two return to watching the footage of Joon-young’s “date,” and Joon-young gloats over how well he did until Bo-young says the story of the runaway wife was too far-fetched.
Looking uncomfortable, Joon-young asks if it couldn’t happen then, to which Bo-young responds that for the wife to run away after three days of marriage, he’d have to have been an idiot, or too in love to see the signs. Ouch.
They’re interrupted when Hyun-woo randomly yells at the ceiling and storms out. Watching his departure, Bo-young guesses that his wife is having an affair. Joon-young chokes and tries to deny it, but Bo-young can tell he’s lying. He asks her to keep it to herself, since Hyun-woo would be uncomfortable if she knew.
Hyun-woo calls Soo-yeon and tells her that he confronted Sun-woo today. When she says she heard, he assumes she’s still meeting with the man. She tries to tell him that she broke it off and asks if they can’t fix the problems between them, but Hyun-woo snaps that she’s the one who cheated, so how can she act like she did nothing wrong? He rages that it isn’t fair that his whole world was turned upside down while both Soo-yeon and Sun-woo can walk around like nothing happened.
Hyun-woo hangs up angrily and then sees that Sun-woo confirmed his facebook friend request. (Why on earth would you confirm your lover’s husband’s friend request?) He starts looking through the man’s pictures and sees all the family shots he posted of his wife and children. Hyun-woo scoffs that a man who loves his family so much would cheat.
Hyun-woo stalks Sun-woo’s house and watches as he arrives home, his loving wife greeting him at the gate. Unable to take it anymore, Hyun-woo calls Sun-woo out to meet him in a nearby park. Finally confronting him alone, Hyun-woo demands to know if the affair really started six months ago. Sun-woo gloomily confirms it. Hyun-woo asks how far they went, and Sun-woo answers that they only slept together once, earning a punch from Hyun-woo.
Sun-woo apologizes again and again, but his calm demeanor angers Hyun-woo further. He yells at the unfairness that though Sun-woo and Soo-yeon are the ones at fault, he’s the only one getting hurt. Sun-woo tries to say that this was all his fault and that Soo-yeon had nothing to do with it, but his familiar use of Hyun-woo’s wife’s name earns him another punch, knocking him to the ground.
Hyun-woo thrusts his phone in Sun-woo’s face. He tells him to call his wife and tell her the truth, or Hyun-woo threatens to run to his house where Sun-woo’s children are sleeping and reveal everything himself.
With no other option, Sun-woo reluctantly calls his wife. As soon as she answers, Hyun-woo grabs the phone and nearly shouts at her, “Your husband is having an affair with my wife. I’ll let you hear the rest from him.” He shoves the phone back at Sun-woo, and the man sadly confirms that it’s true, apologizing to her.
Hyun-woo grabs his phone back and walks away. As he leaves, we hear his new post on the forum: “Everyone, I’ve finally gotten my revenge. I beat up the guy who cheated and let his wife know everything.” All the users immediately comment that he did a good job and cheer him on.
Hyun-woo’s number one fans, Grandma and Ajumma, are sitting outside the closed post office (where they’ve been using the computer). Grandma calls out to a passing young man, beckoning him closer.
They ask to borrow his phone and immediately look up Hyun-woo’s new post, and both are happy to see that he took his revenge. The young man snatches his phone back, and as he hustles off, Ajumma wonders if they should get one of those smartphones so they don’t have to keep traveling to the post office to use the internet.
Hyun-woo trudges home and collapses on his couch, only to find one of his son’s toys shoved between the cushions. He calls Joon-soo, smiling when his son affirms that he misses him, though he doesn’t answer when Joon-soo asks if he misses mom.
The next day, Yoon-ki cleverly dispatches his secretary by hinting that the handsome team member in Hyun-woo’s office is probably in the office alone. She dashes off, and Yoon-ki texts the flower teacher to come over. The teacher leaves the class to go see him, and Ara’s spidey senses lead her to follow, but she fails to catch them in the act since the clever Yoon-ki hid his new mistress under his desk.
The film team goes for a new approach this time, bringing both the husband and cheating wife in to interview together. As Joon-young directs the cameras, Bo-young and Hyun-woo watch the interview.
As husband and wife argue over whether or not the woman really did have an affair, Bo-young notes that there doesn’t seem to be a right answer. “Thinking about it, there seems to be no definite perpetrator or victim. You know, there’s a thing called willful negligence. Even knowing that their marriage will be in danger going on like this, there are many couples that don’t put in effort.” Her words reach Hyun-woo, but he doesn’t seem to agree.
In yet another strange Yoon-ki scene, his new lover showers him in flowers, literally. With a flower clenched between his teeth and smothered in kisses, the man looks like he could die happy.
Soo-yeon’s team member reports the progress on the project with Sun-woo’s company. Afterwards, Soo-yeon overhears the woman telling a coworker that it looked like Sun-woo had gotten into a fight recently.
That night, Hyun-woo walks home, Bo-young’s words echoing in his head. To his surprise, he finds Soo-yeon waiting for him. Still not ready to talk, Hyun-woo ignores his wife, until she asks if he got in a fight with Sun-woo.
Assuming once again that she’s meeting with the man, Hyun-woo mocks her, asking if she rushed to her injured lover’s side. Getting worked up, Hyun-woo reveals that he also told Sun-woo’s wife the truth about her husband, shocking Soo-yeon. She tries to say that this was their problem to solve, but Hyun-woo isn’t having it, yelling that he’s mad at everyone, including the man’s wife for not knowing the truth. So why, he asks, should he consider their feelings?
Holding back her own anger, Soo-yeon asks if he feels better now, and Hyun-woo unrepentantly yells back that he does. Hyun-woo grabs the wallet he found and tosses it at her, saying to give it to Sun-woo if she feels so bad for him, going so far as to taunt her to run away with the man.
Soo-yeon quietly says that the wallet was a present for Hyun-woo, but Hyun-woo just laughs in her face, yelling at her for her meekness. He rants, “How much more are you going to deceive me? Please, both of you stop acting like victims! I’m the one who got destroyed, and I’m the one in pain! I’m the victim, and you guys are the perpetrators!”
Nearly crying, Soo-yeon agrees that she’s the perpetrator. She says she’ll move out of the house, and promises to tell Hyun-woo’s mother the truth. Hyun-woo yells at her for wanting to reveal everything to his mom, who’s had such a hard life, clearly seeing her promise as a threat.
He paces back into the living room, thinking to himself that his wife is now retaliating. His eye catches on the wallet as he thinks, “This week, my wife is fighting back.” Taking a closer look at the wallet, he sees initials printed on it: DHW. Looks like Soo-yeon bought the wallet for Hyun-woo after all.
I’m so glad we got to see Soo-yeon’s perspective this week, because it really painted the affair and its aftermath in a new light. I’m not saying that she was right to cheat, but I can finally understand how it could have happened. I admit that when we saw everything from purely Hyun-woo’s point of view, I was having a hard time being sympathetic to Soo-yeon. I hadn’t realized how thin she was spreading herself, or how overworked she was between her husband, son, and job. Hyun-woo had called her the perfect wife that made his own life so easy, but he’d never considered how much she’d sacrificed of her own life to be perfect for him.
Though, to be fair, while Hyun-woo never asked, it doesn’t look like Soo-yeon ever tried to share her burden. Clearly, Hyun-woo can be overbearing when it comes to his own opinion, but if Soo-yeon doesn’t feel comfortable confiding to her own husband, then there’s something deeply wrong with their relationship. Soo-yeon silently took all the work onto her own shoulders, hiding her growing stress with a smile. It makes sense then that she would be tempted by someone who gave her the attention, affection, and sympathy that she probably didn’t even know she was craving. Again, I’m not saying that she did the right thing, but I can understand.
I don’t mind saying that I was disappointed in Hyun-woo during this episode. I know that his whole world has been flipped around, and I get that he’s in pain and doesn’t know how to deal with it, but he really acted like a big child, only concerned with what he saw as “fair,” and trying to make everyone else hurt like he was hurting. We can see it when he told his staff that these cheating wives had affairs simply because they wanted to, and that their husbands were victimized innocents. Then again in the last scene when Hyun-woo yelled at his wife that she was the perpetrator and thus didn’t deserve to act like a victim. He’s taking such an infantile view of the world, always yelling that he’s right and refusing to see things from another’s perspective.
I can’t say if Hyun-woo’s actions were wrong or right – I’m not sure anyone can – but I found myself shaking my head when he called Sun-woo’s wife to reveal the truth about her husband. Telling the wife may have been the right thing to do, but he did it out of anger. He hurt her because he wanted someone other than himself to be in pain, not because he felt she deserved to know. He was lashing out, and this poor woman had to learn of her husband’s infidelity while she was right next to her sleeping children. Hyun-woo was so busy blaming everyone else and asserting himself as the victim, that he didn’t realize he was becoming the aggressor.
Not only was Hyun-woo blind to his wife’s stress, but apparently he’s missed that his best friend’s wife ran away. Shouldn’t he find it suspicious that he never met with Joon-young’s wife once during the years they were married? Granted, we haven’t gotten the confirmation that Joon-young’s wife really did split after their honeymoon, but given his pained and honest expression, I don’t think it’s too big a leap to conclude that he was telling the truth. I’m both relieved and saddened to find out that Joon-young isn’t truly married, because while it no longer makes him sleazy for being interested in Bo-young, having your wife run out on you less than a week after your marriage isn’t a fate I’d wish on anyone. Hopefully Hyun-woo can put a halt on his personal pity party long enough to see that his friend is hurting too.
The late introduction of Soo-yeon’s perspective was a rather brilliant stroke on the show’s part. We’ve been so busy putting Hyun-woo in the victim’s seat and making Soo-yeon the aggressor, and now it’s apparent that there isn’t a clear cut victim or perpetrator. No black and white, or right and wrong. We’re all just human, doing the best we can with our own flaws. At this point, Hyun-woo has to open his eyes to his own flaws and see the pain he’s causing others on his search to forgive before he does something he’ll need forgiveness for.