It’s been quite a treat getting to know new head-writer Jang Yang Shil’s first drama My Princess. I love that she has her own style, and that her drama has thus far being a unique creation that doesn’t copy the tone and substance of her mentor Kim Eun Sook’s works. Her approach is sweeter, gentler, a dash more whimsical and kindhearted. Unless MP goes into the crapper in the second half, I think my overall impression of Jang Yang Shil is quite positive, and I’ll be interested in her future project(s). Episode 9 of MP reinforces that impression – a solid episode.
However (sorry for the surfeit of caveats these days), I’m still somewhat detached from the central relationship angst in this drama. The background story continues to bore the living crap out of me, and if I can’t connect with the issues percolating around Hae Young and Seol, then I won’t be able to feel the requisite sadness and validation when they break through and finally get together. I don’t have a problem with angst in a drama (my top-10 list include two dramas that are untouchable classics in terms of structuring relationship angst – angst so deep that I am permanently scarred from having watched it), I have a problem with angst that rings flimsy and false.
MP’s ratings dropped about 5% from the last episode. Some of the loss of viewers I attribute to today being Lunar New Year Eve, but Sign had a modest 1% drop in comparison. It’s clear that viewers didn’t like what happened in episode 8, i.e. all the confusing angst and the non-substantive talking. I like that this episode appears to get the drama back on track, and I’m giving MP two more episodes to convince me that Hae Young and Seol’s internal and external conflict, and their actions and reactions, remains believable and consistent. That is all I ask.
I think episode 8 really upset me so much that some of my disappointment carried over to episode 9. But as a whole, this was a very good episode actually. So far I get this: Hae Young has growing feelings for Seol and pretty much its clear to everyone (except Grandpa), Seol has growing feelings for Hae Young and pretty much its clear to everyone (except Grandpa), Jung Woo is just a bystander, and Yoon Joo is like a one foot fence between Hae Young and Seol, neither really notices or cares about her, but everyone trips over her presence. Too bad I can’t hire a gardener to tear up that useless fence.
Episode 9 Recap:
At the dining table of suppressed woe and visible shock, Hae Young announces that he will marry Yoon Joo because he suddenly developed a hankering to stare at a bitch-face for the rest of his life, Yoon Joo announces she ain’t marrying a dude that easily, and Jung Woo and Seol stare at them like they just sprouted horns and stood up on the table to do the Macarena.
After all that awkwardness, Seol is in the courtyard hiccupping uncontrollably, and Jung Woo brings her a glass of water and asks if she’s shocked by what just transpired? She tries to deflect by claiming to just have choked a bit. She’s fine, and whether or not Yoon Joo and Hae Young get married has nothing to do with her. Jung Woo gives her a piercing quizzical look, clearly knowing that she’s not being honest, to both him and herself.
Jung Woo continues to roll in the awesome by confessing that he was actually quite shocked back there. See people, the world doesn’t collapse when you just tell the truth and fess up to your feelings, however confused the feelings are at any given time. Grandpa is grilling the twosome on why they won’t get married. He doesn’t want to hear a peep from Hae Young, asking Yoon Joo why she is refusing.
Yoon Joo claims that she has feminine sensibilities (oh really? I couldn’t tell) and doesn’t want to marry someone by decree, she wants a proper proposal. Yeah, you’ll get one from Hae Young when pigs fly, lady. Her words make Grandpa apologize for being so dictatorial in his ways, and he appears to allow Hae Young and Yoon Joo to work out the getting married part on their own terms.
When they are alone, Hae Young asks Yoon Joo why she won’t get married? I love how Hae Young doesn’t buy her bullshit about wanting a proper romantic proposal drivel. This woman is about as romantic as a cobra spotting a field mouse. Turns out Yoon Joo is really quite bright – she asks why Hae Young said that he won’t marry her when he has no inheritance, yet suddenly he does an about face and agrees to marry her when he still doesn’t have an inheritance.
Hae Young says that he hasn’t changed his mind, but back at the dining table of unspoken issues, he had to agree to marry Yoon Joo. Why, she asks? To show Seol that Hae Young was willing to marry Yoon Joo for Seol’s sake? Hae Young claims that it was because Yoon Joo’s ex-boyfriend was present, and he didn’t want to reject Yoon Joo in front of Jung Woo. In front of Jung Woo, Hae Young wants to be the one rejected by Yoon Joo.
Her eyes tear up when she realizes that Hae Young knows about her relationship with Jung Woo. She asks why he never confronted her about it. Hae Young apologizes to her – he knows that she was lonely, yet she couldn’t give up on Hae Young. It was only after Hae Young started to fall for Seol that it made him realize how poorly he’s treated Yoon Joo in the past (with his polite casual indifference).
Yoon Joo is stunned, and she genuinely is shocked by Hae Young’s coldness, that he could be fine with the woman he was planning to marry dating another guy, and even apologizing to her about being the cause of said two-timing ways. Hae Young tells her that he means it. But this is the end of the road for them. In the future, Yoon Joo can’t come back to Hae Young anymore. It’s not because she doesn’t love him, or she’s marrying him for money or power, none of that matters to Hae Young. The truth is that going forward, Hae Young will be protecting and watching over Seol.
FINALLY!!! Hallelujah, a meaningful, important, and honest conversation between these two. Seol is making herself a cup of warm milk and adding chocolate designs on top of the foam. She flashes back to when she gave a cup of warm milk to Hae Young and he teased her about it. Even more important, she flashes back to his kiss on the steps, and his words for her to forget about it. At least we now know that Seol remembered the kiss.
She also recalls Hae Young agreeing to marry Yoon Joo, and his seemingly contradictory behavior riles her up even more. She says that she is going to forget it (the kiss) not because he told her to, but because she wants to. She calls him a bad guy, which is when said bad guy silently walks right up to the bar area and swiped a glass to pour himself a drink.
Seol worriedly asks Hae Young whether he heard what she was just saying, and it appears he didn’t know that she had just called him a bad guy, nor does he care that she just repeated it. He’s too tired to be angry with her today. Seol thinks Hae Young is in a pissy mood because he just got rejected by Yoon Joo. If she were Hae Young, she’d drink if she were publicly rejected like that.
Hae Young asks her whether she’s planning to go back to her room or sleep her tonight. Seol offers to switch her glass of milk for his whiskey. Hae Young wonders why he keeps running into her in a palace this large. She says that when people feel the same way, they are bound to meet. Seol confesses that today she also got dumped, though it wasn’t in public. OMO, she is indirectly telling Hae Young that she knows that he doesn’t want to be with her since he agreed to marry Yoon Joo. Score one for the princess!
She says that they should have a toast to getting dumped today, and hope that tomorrow things can start with a fresh slate. Seol looks directly at Hae Young, who averts his eyes and doesn’t return her toast. He tells her softly that she didn’t get dumped today. OMO, Hae Young is indirectly telling Seol that he’s not marrying Yoon Joo because he doesn’t have feelings or want to be with Seol. Score one for the future prince-consort!
Seol’s eyes widen and she asks Hae Young what he just said? He repeats that today Seol was not dumped, and then tells her to go get some sleep. Tomorrow they have to prepare a disclosure about the princess’ wealth. He asks her to come to the study in the morning, and walks away. The next morning, Seol asks Hae Young if they can disclose her finances at a later date, and he reminds her that even candidates running for office have to disclose.
She’s so adorable, I bet she has a couple hundred bucks in her bank account at most, LOL. Seol goes to the bank undercover, sporting huge sunglasses, and asks to withdraw all her money and close her account. When she is counting the dough, Hae Young sneaks up behind her and asks her if that amount is all she owns. She says that she wants to donate her entire fortune to society. Hae Young looks at her intently, and puts her sunglasses back on and tells her to leave before she embarrasses herself anymore. He’ll take care of donating her money to society.
When they walk out, Seol runs into an oppa outside the bank, who recognizes her. She calls him Hyun Woo oppa (who is played by Joo Sang Woo in a cameo role), and asks when he returned to Korea? Hae Young immediately gets his jealous flag up. Seol rushes to give him a hug, and Hae Young pulls her back, warning the princess not to have any contact with someone she just met.
She introduces him as her bodyguard or sorts, and he says that he is a diplomat who is in charge of everything concerning the princess. Hae Young is rude some more to Hyun Soo, and then drags Seol out of there. Back at the palace, Hae Young wants Seol to list out all her past activities. She wonders if he means her Hyun-oppa, who was just a wonderful childhood memory.
Hae Young asks Seol to list all her previous relationships, and wonders who was her first love. Seol retorts that her nickname is True-to-one-guy-named-N-Seol, leading Hae Young to asks who the guy named N is? Is it Nam Jung Woo? She asks if there is anything wrong with that. He says that she sure has pretty low standards.
He then asks when her last kiss was? She says about three years ago, and he asks her to please differentiate between a peck and a real kiss. It can’t have been three years ago that she had her last kiss. Okay, this is so classic Hae Young and Seol, and reminds me of how much I adore their banter. Seol gets upset at his digging for information, and wants to ask the same questions of Hae Young. He says he has nothing to hide, he’s lived a clean and upstanding life for the past 31 years.
He hasn’t live a single day where he wasn’t in control of his actions, except for that one night…. Seol asks whether that one night he is talking about is that “one night”? Hae Young asks her to stop with the questions, and before they can continue the convo, Seol is called away to the study. Yoon Joo is there with Jung Woo, and she proceeds to dictate what Seol’s schedule will be for the ceremony for the establishment of the Royal Foundation.
Jung Woo pipes up, wondering if everyone is going to pretend about the real reason why the princess didn’t make it to the last press conference/ceremony? Hae Young tells Jung Woo to stop touting his excellent memory, and just let it go. Yoon Joo concurs, but her passive-aggressive ways lead her to claim that it would make Seol feel bad. Feel bad my arse! Seol says hell to the no, why let it go? Seol turns towards Hae Young and says that one ought to be called to task for certain actions.
Hae Young smirks and tells Seol to use her righteous but useless indignation at the upcoming press conference. Seol says she prepared her speech already, and Yoon Joo grabs the notebook out of Seol’s hand and read it. Jung Woo compliments Seol on giving a great speech to the staff earlier, and Seol admits that she’s made for the spotlight. Yoon Joo scoffs out loud while reading Seol’s speech, saying that there is a very interesting line.
Yoon Joo reads – “I am merely adding a pair of chopsticks to the royal banquet table that you have already arranged.” Everyone titters at Seol’s statement, and Yoon Joo asks Seol whether Seol has always been the type to just take what someone already has. Both Hae Young and Jung Woo speak up in defense of Seol’s statement in the speech. Seol beems under the support, especially from Jung Woo.
The younger lady in waiting comes in to announce that Lee Dan is here to see Seol. Seol excitedly excuses herself and runs off to meet Dan. Yoon Joo isn’t done with her bitch quota for the day, and reminds the palace staff to be extremely careful when selecting the invitees for the ceremony. Back in her bedroom, Seol runs and gives her witch sister a bear hug, happily asking why Dan hasn’t been picking up the phone.
Dan tells Seol not to touch her, she feels nauseated by it. Seol asks if its about the press conference, and Dan accuses Seol of using her tears to garner sympathy as some sort of tragic heroine. Seol tries to explain, saying that she’s very afraid in the palace, always wanting to run away. Dan screams at her to run away then! She can’t because Seol doesn’t want to give up bring a princess.
Dan then goes batshit insane and starts trashing the closet and is about to strike Seol with a necklace when Hae Young grabs her hand to restrain her. He wonders if sisters treat each other this way. He tells her to come visit anytime and “play” this game again. Dan stalks out and Seol tries to run after her to explain. Seol accuses Hae Young of being happy with this outcome.
Hae Young runs after Dan and asks her why she is here today. She claims that she is here to visit her sister, and Hae Young tells her not to come back again if this is how she wants to conduct her visits. Hae Young goes to the guest house to explain to Seol’s mom that the press conference was solely his idea and Seol was not part of it.
He admits to keeping Seol from attending the press conference. Seol’s mom is upset at being seen as a mom who doesn’t trust her own daughter, which means that Seol’s mom clearly understood from the beginning that Seol had nothing to do with the press conference reveals. Hae Young asks that mom not go visit Seol in the near future, since it would make her weaker if she had someone to lean on during this difficult time.
Suddenly there is pounding on the door, and Seol has come home to see her mom. She tells her mom that she will keep coming until her mom is willing to see her. Seol tells her mom that she won’t cry anymore, when she cries she makes other people happy. Seol confesses to her mom that she likes someone during this hectic time, isn’t that crazy?
Seol confesses to being really confused. This person makes her upset, sometimes is mean to her, and sometimes is as nice as her father. Hae Young’s face tightens, and Seol’s mom turns to look at him, both clearly understanding who Seol is talking about outside the door. Seol continues – her heart flutters when he is in front of her, she feels short of breath. She tells her mom that the guy is planning to marry another woman soon, so Seol wants to hate him. But she can’t hate it. What should she do?
Seol’s mom looks horrified and stares at Hae Young. Seol calls out that she really wants to see her mom right now, and could her mom please open the door? Seol finally stands and says that she needs to leave today otherwise the palace will worry about her. She tells her mom that she will be back soon. Hae Young apologizes to Seol’s mom, and she asks if he is the man who is making her daughter cry? Hae Young does not answer.
On the drive back to the palace, the lackeys note that they saw Park Hae Young’s car outside the guest house just now. Seol freaks out and tells her to stop the car right now! She gets out and walks on the side of the road, waiting for Hae Young, who drives right past her. Seol hitchhikes on a delivery truck and demands the ahjusshi to follow Hae Young’s car. She outs herself as the princess and tells the driver that she is on official business.
Seol does her best Mishil impression and yells at him to drive after the car. The guy finally humors her, but asks is she is crazy. Seol agrees that she is crazy, and pretends to hijack his car with her finger gun. They finally catch up to Hae Young, and Seol grabs the speaker from the dash and tells Hae Young to stop the car. She claims that whatever he heard at the guest house is NOT true and to forget it.
Hae Young just shakes his head at his princess’ typical crazy behavior. He stops the car, and tells Seol to stop behaving in such embarrassing ways. She says that no matter what, she needs to explain his misunderstanding about what he heard back at the guest house. Hae Young says there is no misunderstanding, anyone hearing that speech knows that the guy Seol is talking about is clearly him. Ah yeah, your cocky assumptions are the best, Hae Young!
Seol says that the guy is NOT Park Hae Young, it’s another guy named P. Hae Young smirks and asks if there is another guy who makes Seol’s heart flutter and is about to marry another woman? She keeps wanting dig herself a bigger hole, so Hae Young agrees to pretend that its another guy named P for the time being. Seol yells at him for being so full of himself and presumptuous. He says that he’s not being presumptuous, he’s just stating a fact.
He teases her about her bright red ears on such a cold day, knowing how adorably embarrassed Seol must be right now. They head back to the palace to prepare for the press conference. Seol is getting ready when she received a flower arrangement, which is from her mom. The words “more beautiful than a flower, a princess, Lee Seol, and my daughter” are written on the petals. Seol smiles to receive such a loving affirmation from her mom. I do too, I love their mother-daughter relationship.
Seol mentally prepares herself to give the speech. She walks into the ceremony to find the room completely empty except for THREE media members. Yoon Joo stares at Seol with it “what?” look of triumph. Seol walks up to the stand. When Grandpa asks Yoon Joo what is going on, the witch claims that something must’ve happened. Yes, YOU happened, you slimy snake.
Seol starts her speech to the few people in the room. Hae Young walks outside and finds out that cars are being denied entrance to the parking lot, and anyone without a press pass is not allowed in, upon the orders of Yoon Joo. Hae Young writes a note for the princess, which asks her whether she wants to move the press conference to the parking lot.
Seol smiles as she realizes what happened and how Hae Young is helping her surmount the obstacle created by Yoon Joo. Seol announces that the rest of her speech will be in the parking lot and tells the media to come with her. She takes off running, and removes her high heels to run. When she gets to the parking lot, she sees all the media outside wanting to know why they were not allowed in today.
Seol gets on a chair, and addresses the media directly. Seol grabs a loudspeaker, and gives an impromptu speech because she left her notes behind. She apologizes for not being a princess that satisfied everyone’s expectations. But she speaks from the heart, about her desire to become a princess for the people, and to respect the history of Korea. She asks the people to help her, to teach her what to do.
She says that she is smart and willing to learn. She gives them an email address and asks for the public to communicate directly with her. The media loves her candid and down-to-earth nature, and applauds her speech. Seol goes back to the palace, and finds out through deduction that Hae Young wrote the note that gave her the idea to move the press conference to the parking lot.
Later that night, Seol is sitting by the fountain resting her feet. She looks at the note and smiles. But then she notices that her soles are dirty from running outside without shoes. As she is trying to clean it, Hae Young comes by, and pulls her feet up to look at it. She jumps into the fountain to get away from him. Hae Young says that her dirty feet made the fountain dirty and now the water needs to be changed.
Hae Young grabs her shoes and hands it to her, then reaches into the fountain and picks Seol up into his arms. He carries her back to her room so she can soak her feet in warm water lest she catch a cold. My squee, I love this scene, and the both tender and teasing gestures between them.
Seol wants him to put her down otherwise people will see. He tells her that of course people will see (and reach their own conclusions). He complains that Seol is too heavy and carries her away. I love that she grabs his neck the way we girls imagined a princess being carried by a prince would do in our fairytales books. MP knows that its channeling a girlish fanstasy and does it with a modern flair. Yoon Joo looks at them with her typical narrowed eyes look of envy and bitterness.
The next day, Seol finds out that she now has fans, and even anti-fans. Adorable Gun is sad that his noona now is so popular, and is even further away from his reach. Hae Young is meeting with the President, who reminded Hae Young that he was installed in the palace because Hae Young was so vehemently opposed to the royal restoration. And yet the princess’ popularity continues to rise.
The President is a man who knows how to take advantage of any situation, and he notes that the princess’ words appear to be better received by the public then anything the president says. He asks Hae Young to develop the princess so that she can become the mouth piece for the Blue House. Hae Young watched the introductory video made by Seol back in his room.
Seol is in the antique car checking on her fan club and her popularity. She cosplays Mishil again and declares that “today, is the time for Lee Seol!” She gives a sageuk villainess laugh, and then stops when Hae Young gets into the car. He doesn’t say anything, just stares at her. He tells her that he’s leaving for a few days.
She informs him that she gets the car between 10-11 a.m., and that he’s free to come any other time. He refuses, telling her that he’s only going to come during that time, because that is just what he feels like doing. Seol then changes her time to between 9-10 a.m. Hae Young leaves the car, and she watches him leave.
Hae Young goes to Seol’s father’s grave and pays his respects, genuinely for the first time since he’s always disdained coming here with his grandfather in the past. He apologizes to her father. Seol asks Jung Woo to go with her to the orphanage. In her memory, she recollects the satchel, but really doesn’t remember what happened to it.
Jung Woo agrees to go, but if they find it, he wants his name in textbooks. Yoon Joo is visiting the nun at the orphanage. The nun remembers Seol being a darling child and quickly adopted. They suggested Seol be adopted with Dan (whose name was Go Eun Byo and later changed to Lee Dan). Back then, Seol was in shock and had no memory and lost her ability to talk.
Yoon Joo shows a picture of the satchel to the nun, and the num remembers it. Which is when Seol and Jung Woo arrive to liven the party. The nun happily welcomes back Seol, who asks about the satchel as well. The nun says that the satchel did not belong to Seol, but belonged to Lee Dan. Seol says that she remembers the satchel quite well. The nun says that all the kids fought over the satchel since it was supposedly a memento from a parent, and all the orphans longed for a parent.
Seol asks about whether she arrived with her father’s bag, and is told she did, and she wouldn’t let it go for days. During that time, Dan took care of Seol. Jung Woo says that the satchel could be fake, or that Lee Dan is lying. Yoon Joo offers to drive Seol back to the palace. Seol agrees and says goodbye to Jung Woo.
Yoon Joo asks Seol to go for some tea, and Seol one ups her and says that they should go drink instead. The ladies sit across from one another shooting looks and pouring each other drinks. They start to drink, and it’s clear that Yoon Joo is the better drinker. Yoon Joo says that she was always the best, at drinking or at grades.
Seol wonders why Yoon Joo is using jeondaemal with her, and Yoon Joo says that its not just the two of them (i.e. they are in a restaurant with others around). Seol is taken aback at how calculating Yoon Joo is. Yoon Joo reaches to pour herself a drink, ad Seol stops her, saying that it brings three years of no one liking you if a person pours themselves a drink. Yoon Joo ignores her and drinks anyway.
Yoon Joo takes a second drink, and then tells Seol that it’s now six years. Oooh, she is sooooo cold, and ballsy. Seol asks Yoon Joo who she loves more – Jung Woo or Hae Young? Yoon Joo confesses that her first love was Hae Young, and not Jung Woo. She confesses that she’s liked both guys, but right now she wants to see Jung Woo more. Seol asks why? Yoon Joo confesses its because Jung Woo loves her more between the two men.
Seol is pissed at Yoon Joo for her self-serving ways, and refusal to answer her question about who Yoon Joo loves more. Yoon Joo gestures for Seol to come closer, and when Seol does, Yoon Joo asks if Seol wants to know her answer that badly so that Seol can wholeheartedly decide to love Hae Young. Damn, ladies, this is some awesome showdown we’re having here.
Yoon Joo says that she won’t let go of either guy. She holds up her phone, and asks if Seol wants to confirm right now? Hae Young and Jung Woo are in the palace, and both worried why Seol is not back yet. Hae Young demands to know where Seol is, and Jung Woo says that Seol is with the woman Park Hae Young is planning to marry. Hae Young realizes that Seol is with Yoon Joo.
Jung Woo’s gets a text from Yoon Joo, asking him to pick her up because she can’t drive after drinking. Hae Young gets the exact same text from Yoon Joo. Hae Young asks Jung Woo if he got a text from Yoon Joo, and then offer to go together. Jung Woo asks why Hae Young needs to come with him? Hae Young replies that someone is anxiously waiting for him.
The ladies are outside waiting. Seol tells Yoon Joo to leave, since the guys aren’t coming. Yoon Joo is certain they will come, and asks Seol whether she’s worried that Hae Young will come pick up Yoon Joo? Seol replies that she doesn’t want Hae Young to come. Which is when Hae Young arrives, and Yoon Joo looks triumphant. Jung Woo walks up behind Hae Young, and Yoon Joo runs and hugs Hae Young.
The foursome proceed to have another stare down moment.
Thoughts of Mine:
Oh thank heavens! With episode 9 under my belt, I can put the pointless and confusing angst of episode 8 behind me and find tons of substantive emotional and plot forward momentum that arrived in this episode. I think everyone running around like headless chickens and talking (but not really talking) in the last episode was a giant step back that needed huge jumps in this episode to recoup the momentum. I’m happy to report that it mostly did that.
Episode 9 delivered a major breakthrough in the story, and suddenly I see the bigger picture without having to dig through the nitty-gritty (and to rationalize everything) to get there. I love how every single one of the major players in this story know all the facts. We’re not in grade school where misunderstandings and unspoken pining is the name of the game. We have adult people, some of whom have been in mature relationships, and I refuse to believe everyone walks around blind to what is happening.
What a good romantic drama does is make the feelings visible and present, but then forces the participants to make choices in their own lives as to how each wants to acknowledge those feelings. Yoon Joo is the easiest – she wants her cake and eat it too. She wants Hae Young AND Jung Woo, exactly how and what she’s going to do with them is not the point. The point is about possession, ownership, feeling powerful that these two men want her.
I finally get Yoon Joo’s motivation – it’s all a power trip to her. It’s not about the money, its not about the starvation for affection, it’s not about the validation. She’s (and her father) have lived their entire lives at the beck and call of Grandpa. She feels powerless, always a servant, always someone subservient to a richer, more powerful person. It must sting to have Seol catapulted into the position without anything other than her birthright. This is why Yoon Joo cannot help but feel antagonism towards Seol and what she represents.
Jung Woo has managed to set his feelings for Yoon Joo aside (I don’t believe for a second he doesn’t still have lingering feelings for her, feelimhs that can be reignited if and when free-spirited girl he fell in love with returns) while he assists Seol and his own academic research. He’s not in this power or relationship tussle, but he’s not ignorant of all the swirling emotions going on around him.
Seol is the most direct and forthright of them all – she likes Hae Young, and she never pretends otherwise. She treats him the same way she’s always treated him, teasing and bickering, but she was the first to tell him in a roundabout way that she got dumped by him. I love that their conversations are back to being loaded with meaning yet not comprised of circular logic. Seol’s words are clear, she likes Hae Young inspite of him being so insufferable at times, because the real him is someone who takes care of her like her father did. Seol thinks that Hae Young doesn’t want to be with her, and so she hasn’t considered what to do if they do want to be together in the future.
Hae Young is clear that he likes Seol, and he tells her that much. He tells her that he didn’t dump her when he agreed to marry Yoon Joo. He acknowledges that he knows Seol likes him. And yet….for a variety of reasons he can’t simply throw caution to the wind and bare his soul to Seol. Great romantic angst is the knowledge and understanding that a couple may like each other, but there are other equally important things in the world they need to work through before they can be together. I find MP is once again convincing me that it understands this plot-driven narrative and isn’t creating pointless hurdles for our OTP.