Winter Sonata – Episode 2


Shuk:  Episode 2 still has us back in the bonny days of 1992 as our pair grow closer.  As one of my first SK melodramas, this episode had the majority of the cute before all the angst began to muck up everything.   And we get the snow motif that is the cornerstone of the drama.


The Jong family is having a memorial service for the patriarch, and Professor Kim and Sang-hyuk participate.  Once it’s over they leave, never noticing Kang Joon-sang lurking in the shadows outside Yoo-jin’s house.

The next day they share a smile before reaching the classroom, where everyone claps and cheers for the couple, even humming the wedding song.  It all comes a halt when the teacher shows up.  He immediately puts them in front of the chalkboard and dresses them down.  He immediately blames Joon-sang, because, while Yoo-jin is the Queen of Tardiness, she had never played hooky before.  Joon-sang apologizes, but Yoo-jin pipes up that she wanted to sneak out.  The teacher is not pleased, and gives them a month of yardwork as punishment.

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In the bathroom, Jin-sook pulls her classmate aside.  Did scary Joon-sang bully her into leaving campus? Yoo-jin counters he’s a nice guy and not scary at all.  Just then, Chae-rin and her cronies show up, and she immediately gets into Yoo-jin’s face. Since she already called dibs on the new guy, was she trying to seduce him?  Yoon-jin cheekily counters: How many tails does Chae-rin have under her uniform (implying she is a gumiho / nine-tailed fox), flips up her skirt, and runs off laughing while Chae-rin fumes.

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Our hooky pair are doing their punishment.  Yoo-jin mentions that the burning leaves smell like her late father’s tobacco.  Joon-sang is thoughtful, and asks her if  she has ever made a mistake, does she never make it again, or continue to make it, knowing it is wrong?

Yoo-jin thinks for a moment, and asks what does he mean?   He replies, “You decide not to see someone again, would you keep the promise, or see that person again?”

Her answer is simple. “I would see that person again.”

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Later that night, he thinks about her answer, and ends in front of the Professor’s office.  The Prof offers to tutor him in advanced mathematics because of his abilities. The conversation switches to the Sang-hyuk, and Joon-sang muses aloud that Professor must love his son very much.  The Prof is happy to say that he loves his only son, and all fathers are proud. He hopes they will be friends in school.

At the school in the radio room, Joon-sang brings in some records from home, and watches Yoo-jin as she goes through them.  Aw puppy love is cute.  She chooses one; it turns out to be “First Time”, the song he played on the piano previous.  He offers her the album to keep, but she says he plays it better.

She goes on to say that he was her first for a lot of things: the first time she skipped class; the first time she stepped on someone’s back, and the first time she held a guy’s hand, and the first time she rode a bicycle.  The speech gives him the courage for a first of his own – to ask a girl to the movies. She agrees.

At her house that night, she asks her mom what did she love about Dad?  Mom answers; the way he secretly looked at her and how he acted cool when he really liked her.  This strikes a chord with Yoo-jin, who slaps the table in agreement.  Her mom asks if she is in love, and she eventually admits it.

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At school the next day, the gang is planning an overnight trip Christmas Eve, but Yoo-jin has to decline due to a previous appointment.  Later, Yong-kuk invites Joon-sang to the trip, but he also declines, citing a previous engagement.  Our exponential friend comments out loud at this, which gets Sang-hyuk thinking bad thoughts.  He decides to follow the transfer student and see if he meets up with Yoo-jin.

He doesn’t see Yoo-jin, but it’s almost as perplexing; Joon-sang is meeting up with his dad, doing math things and laughing.  Ooh, is our Class President feeling a bit inferior?

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Joon-sang is the first to arrive at the radio station, but Sang-hyuk isn’t far behind, and immediately asks him why he is bothering his dad.

The two lock horns just as Yoo-jin arrives.  Sang-hyuk wants to know if Joon-sang is after him for some reason; he replies that he hates people who have everything, and he wants to take it all away.  Wow, that’s some big chip you have on your shoulder, Joon-sang.

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The Class President grabs him by the collar and asks him why he way playing around with Yoo-jin.  He admits it, and Yoo-jin pushes in and confronts both of them.  She ask Joon-sang if what he said was true; he doesn’t make eye contact, but tells her yes.  She slaps him, and tells him she has a prior engagement for Saturday.

At home, her mom had prepared an outfit for her Saturday date,   She tell her mom there is a change in plans, and she will be going to the cabin with her friends.  She goes to her room and cries.

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The next morning, the gang is at the train station.  The last person to show up is Joon-sang.  Sang-hyuk and Yoo-jin are less than thrilled.

There’s a smattering of snow in the mountains as they trek to the cabin, our transfer student bringing up the rear.  The two girls are speculating why Joon-sang and Yoo-jin are acting cold to each other.  Chae-rin is convinced he rejected her. Jin-sook thinks it’s Chae-rin that got dumped by Joon-sang.

Chores includes firewood, Christmas tree and stringing lights. Sang-hyuk keeps an eye on our icy pair.  Later that night, they are playing 1N2D games around the fire.   They fish sweet potatoes out of the fire and share stories. The story, a love triangle, touches a chord in Yoo-jin, and she excuses herself to take a walk.  Joon-sng follows her, and tries to talk to her, telling her it was a misunderstanding.  She refuses to listens, telling him he is sure is full of secrets. It culminates it him blurting that every bad thing about him is true.  And she runs off into the woods.

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It gets later and the gang gets worried that she hasn’t returned.  Sang-hyuk and Joon-sang start looking for her.  She’s lost, and scared of the noises.  She falls and hurts her ankle, ending up curled in a miserable little ball.  A bright light has her looking up, and Joon-sang gets a brief view of her tearstained face before she launches herself at him.  The relief for both is palpable.

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Before heading back, Joon-sang tells her.”I wondered whether I should come or not. But if too much time went by, it would be too hard to tell you. I can’t blame you if you hate me, but my feelings are sincere.”  They head back to the cabin with the air cleared between them.  They start walking hand in hand as Joon-sang explains about  Polaris, The North Star.  No matter what happens, if you can find Polaris, you can find your way home.

Everyone at the cabin is pacing, especially Sang-hyuk, when the couple come into view. Everyone also gets an eyeful of the handholding.  The next morning she is walking down from the cabin.  Sang-hyuk realizes she doesn’t have her jacket and heads out behind her.  Before he can catch up, she calls out to Joon-sang, who quickly puts his own jacket on her, leaving Class President fuming.  At the train station, Yong-kuk wants to extend the trip by going out to eat, but a grouchy Sang-hyuk stops that idea, and heads off.  Yoo-jin chases him to ask him what’s wrong.  He starts lecturing her; doesn’t she know Joon-sang is insincere and a liar? And that he is a loner who can never love anybody?  She interrupts him; she likes Joon-sang.  He just storms off without another word.

At the schoolyard incinerator, it’s business as usual as our pair burn leaves.  Yoo-jin laments the lack of snow so far this year. On the first snowfall the year before, she shared way-too spicy dukkbeoki with Sang-hyuk and smiles sadly.  I guess Sang-hyuk is still cold to her after the Christmas Eve Cabin disaster.  Joon-sang attempts to cheer her up by making it snow – leaves that is.  He asks her what are her plans for the first snowfall this year, because he plans to meet a girl at a lake he once played hooky at.   She just smiles and dances with the leaves.

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Then it happens: snow!  They both pretend they “just happened” to be by the lake.  They throw snow, make a rather scary-looking snowman, and a couple of cuter, smaller ones.  She makes the smaller ones kiss, then impishly smooches Joon-sang on the cheek.  He is startled and looks at her, but now she turns shy.  He’s a quick learner, though, and calls her name.  When she looks up, he gives her a kiss on the lips.  The shyness doesn’t stop their fun, as they frolic until it’s late.  They end up back in town, playing twenty questions and eating street food.  He asks her to meet him there on New Year’s Eve night, and he will tell her who is favorite  person is.  They  end up on her front porch, where she gives him her pink mittens to keep his hands warm on the way home.  On impulse she invites him in for dinner.

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Her little sister decides she going to marry the handsome oppa, and is set to entertain him while Yoo-jin unni cooks.  She gets out the family album, and starts showing him all the  photos, trying to convince him that she is better than her older sister because she is cuter and not a picky eater.  He continues to glance through the book and the two sister bicker a bit, until he finds the duplicate photo to the one he has.   He asks Yoo-jin about  the picture; Yoon-jin replies it’s Sang-hyuk’s dad, her dad, and their high school friend. Which we already know is his mom. The two girls go back to the kitchen, while Joon-sang stares at the photo. When the tofu stew is on the table, they go get him, but he is nowhere to be found.

He is actually running away as fast as he can run, but he can’t outrun his thoughts: who really is his father?  He goes all the way to Professor Kim’s office and finally asks him the important questions: does he know the pianist Kang Mi-hee, who went to his high school? Professor says that the girl in the picture was extremely close with Yoo-jin’s dad, and left soon after he got married. Joon-sang’s faces goes through all manner of disbelief.  Professor Kim says he had a crush on the girl too, but she only had eyes for Jong Hyun-soo.   Professor chuckles that it’s all ancient history, but for Joon-ang, it is very much a big big problem.   At home, he thinks in the dark for a while, then calls his mom to tell her he is ready to go back to America.

Winter_Sonata_ep-02[T1][(112148)04-36-05]It’s New Year’s Eve, and Yoo-jin’s little sister is suspicious of her primping.  She offers up her Sanrio earmuffs for extra cuteness.  Meanwhile, Joon-sang is getting into the car, preparing to head to the airport.  It’s snowing again when Yoo-jin makes it to their meeting point and starts checking her watch.  In the car, Joon-sang pulls out the pink mittens, and on impulse, tells the driver to stop so he can meet someone.  It’s clear he intends to meet up with Yoon-jin and tell her everything, including his suspicions of who his father is.  Mom is having none of it and refuses to stop the car, so he jumps out and grabs a taxi.  The traffic is ugly, though, so he chooses to run instead.  Meanwhile the time is ticking.

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He’s almost there, when there’s a blare of horns and  one final word from  Joon-sang: “Yoo-jin-a”.






About Shukmeister

I have a great fondness for chocolate chip cookie dough, 80's science fiction movies, and thunderstorms.

Posted on September 13, 2013, in Recaps, Winter Sonata (2002) and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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