I Live in Cheongdamdong Ep 117 Recap

We open with Jieun feeling a bit glum that she can only reach Hyunwoo if he’s within a 2.5km radius. She thinks to herself that their relationship is similar to the walkie-talkies; it only exists when they are right next to each other.

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As she’s leaving the restaurant, she meets Sangyeob, who immediately ascertains that she’s feeling under the weather and offers to drive her home or take her someplace to cheer her up. Jieun thinks back to all the times that Sangyeob has acted strangely and realizes that he was trying to prevent her from seeing Hyunwoo with his ex-girlfriend. She refuses his invitation, but says with a smile, “I really have a good friend in you.”

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Sangyeob finds Hyunwoo at his house and chews him out for not resolving his business with his ex. “Is it fun to have two girls suffer because they like you?” Hyunwoo retorts that it’s none of Sangyeob’s business. He also says that it’s Sangyeob who keeps taking his ex (whom I think is called Suli) to Jieun’s restaurant. Finally, he says that there is nothing to resolve because their relationship ended a long time ago and will end irrevocably once Suli finishes her business with Sangyeob’s company and returns to America.

Meanwhile, Jieun is thinking back to her encounter with Suli. “How much do you really understand about Hyunwoo?” Suli had asked.

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The walkie talkie bursts into life and Hyunwoo asks if she’s there. For once, Jieun doesn’t pick up. Instead, she burrows into the safety of her bed (oh, beds, the loyal companions of us all), leaving Hyunwoo alone in his mansion. Screen shot 2013-08-24 at 4.52.35 AMScreen shot 2013-08-24 at 4.52.12 AMThe next day, Suli calls Hyunwoo’s house. He doesn’t pick up but listens to her voice mail. “The girl that you like… I know her,” she says.

They meet at a cafe, where Suli says, “You like Oh Ji Eun, but Oh Ji Eun doesn’t know you at all.” Hyunwoo’s face is expressionless until Suli says, “I told her so.”

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“What did you tell her?”

“That Oh Ji Eun doesn’t know anything about Hyunwoo. That the Hyunwoo she likes isn’t even the real Hyunwoo. Did I do wrong to tell her that?”

Hyunwoo says politely but firmly, “Noona, you are the one who doesn’t know me right now.”

Suli looks a bit confused. “If you like Jieun and Jieun likes you… then isn’t the reason that you’re not together… me?”

Hyunwoo just asks, “When are you leaving? Today? Tomorrow? Are you not leaving?” Ouch, Hyunwoo, ouch. Suli looks hurt… but all of her expressions are so bland that she just looks bland-hurt. This is one woman who will not get laugh lines or frown lines or any sort of lines.

Screen shot 2013-08-24 at 5.04.13 AMShe starts, “Hyunwoo… in the past, I -”

“The fact that you know now what you felt for me in the past… that’s enough for me, to know that I wasn’t alone in liking you. But that’s the past, and it can’t change the present.” Hyunwoo excuses himself, saying that he has something he needs to do.

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Awww, I think the above screencap does a really good job of showing that Hyunwoo is at peace with everything. He still looks sympathetic to his old flame, but he’s ready to move on.

He runs out of the cafe and tries to contact Jieun via the walkie talkie, but it runs out of battery. He uses a local telephone but she’s not at work, so he runs to buy new batteries.

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He tries contacting her again, not knowing that she’s just listening to his calls without picking up. “Habits are hard to break once you make them,” she says. “Why did I even bring this to work?” She thinks back to Suli asking her, “Is there any proof that Hyunwoo likes you?” Uh…. the fact that he’s calling you nonstop on your walkie-talkie right now? And then your cellphone? And then your boss’ cellphone? I don’t know, I’m just guessing here. -_-

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As for Hyunwoo, I get that there’s an element of kdrama urgency here, but do you really need to tell her Right. This. Second. that you’ve made your peace? She comes home from work in three hours. Down, boy.

*Sorries, everyone is bothering me a little in this episode with their bland-hurt expressions.

In any case, Jieun’s boss says, “Oh? Jieun? She’s…” When Jieun waves frantically for her to lie, Jungmin finishes, “She’s not here right now.”

Yes, Jieun, yes. DON’T let him make you happy. Sigh. I guess she could be fearing the worst, that he’s decided to be with Suli forever and ever and is calling to say goodbye, but this kind of pandering gets frustrating sometimes for the viewer.

She leaves work early, missing Hyunwoo, who decides to go to the restaurant to check that she’s not there. He then uses the phone to call home, but Jieun isn’t there either. Jungmin gets nervous, thinking that something will happen. In kdrama lingo, “something” nearly always means attempted suicide. Come on, Jungmin, you watch Hugh Grant movies! Suicide and incest are out; happy endings are in.

Screen shot 2013-08-24 at 5.21.04 AMJieun and Hyunwoo continue their cat and mouse chase through the city and Jieun turns her walkie-talkie off after hearing Hyunwoo call for her several times. Seriously, if real life were a drama and we were this actively ignorant about denying ourselves happiness…

Jieun goes to a pretty field she had visited once with Hyunwoo and tests the walkie talkie out. Then she scoffs, “What am I doing? Of course he’s not going to answer.” What the… OF COURSE HE’S NOT GOING TO ANSWER AFTER YOU SPECIFICALLY RAN TO A FIELD IN THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE… AFTER HE CALLED YOU A HUNDRED TIMES. Sigh, but the laws of kdrama will bring him, Jieun, don’t worry.

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“This is the last call I will make. I didn’t have the courage to tell you this in person. Even though we weren’t dating, even though we weren’t anything… yes, let’s just call ourselves people who once bought land together, opened a noodle shop together, lived together, took care of a cat together, and liked the rain together… In any case, we weren’t dating and we weren’t lovers, but… on the basis that we have some memories together, I just want to say that, regardless of what happens in the future, I hope you live well. Even if it’s not me… even if it’s not me and even if it’s not here, I wish you happiness.”

Hyunwoo manages to race into reception just quickly enough to catch the second half of her words.

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He pants into the phone, “Oh Ji Eun, as your boyfriend, I want to tell you that, in the future, you have to say where you’re going before you go. Also, keep your walkie-talkie on at all times.” Come on, Hyunwoo, walkie talkies are cool only up to a point, even I had to pause a bit in writing that last sentence.

Jieun spins around, shocked, because she was sure that she had gone way out of reception range. Finally, she asks hesitantly, “Who… who is this?”

HEAD. DESK. It’s your father, Jieun.

Screen shot 2013-08-24 at 5.40.54 AMStatic and the sound of Hyunwoo gasping for breath bursts out of the walkie-talkie, along with the words, “Your… loved one.” Awww, ok, that was a pretty cute. Not to mention, I’ve really been enjoying the background song to this scene, does anyone know its name?

They finally catch sight of each other, and, as he’s walking towards her, he says, “Next time, please don’t let the one you love have such a hard time.”

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In voiceover, Jieun thinks, “As your girlfriend, as your loved one, I just want to say… thank you for coming.”

Closing Thoughts:

I was pretty frustrated with our two leads this episode, as was apparent throughout the recap, but they fully redeemed themselves in the last five minutes. Both of their facial expressions were perfect. When she saw Hyunwoo walk down the lane, Jieun looked like she was watching some type of deity descend from heaven, and Hyunwoo, in turn, looked staggeringly happy. However, Hyunwoo’s face was built to look happy, so I’m going to have to give more kudos to Jieun.

Also, what I noticed in my translations was that, in English, the answer to Jieun’s question, “Who is this,” can be translated as “Your lover,” but the exact dictation is somewhat closer to, “Your loved one,” which I think is a sweeter version because it references the fact that you need to be loved before you are a lover, an issue that Jieun had been worrying about the entire episode.

Finally, Happy Birthday to my fellow ILICDD fan Lhay, who has watched this drama without subtitles seven times!

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2 thoughts on “I Live in Cheongdamdong Ep 117 Recap

  1. waaaaaaah, im really shouting right now!!!!!! thank you very much!!!!! best gift ever!!! you really did a geat job on this recap! really thank you so much! love love ❤

  2. even though i have watched it 7 times, just now i understand everything they said in this episode and regarding the background song, i have it but i forgot the title, i’ll check and get back to you! thank you!

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