Thirty But Seventeen Episodes 7-8 Recap

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Just when it seemed like nothing could upset our plucky heroine, a setback in the search for her uncle turns her against Woo-jin. Surprisingly, it’s not Woo-jin’s cold exterior that brings this on, but rather a crack in the ice that shows that he is a caring person after all. When Woo-jin doubles down on his aloofness, it’s those memories, both good and painful, that they’ll need to lure him back.

EPISODE 7: “Is that the truth?”

 

Seo-ri darts into a busy crosswalk when she spots her uncle, and a panicked Woo-jin catches up and stops her in the middle of the intersection. Seo-ri is determined to keep going and breaks free of his hold as soon as the crosswalk light turns green again. The delay is long enough to lose sight of her uncle though, and Seo-ri turns on Woo-jin to blame.

She yells at him for interfering in her affairs, a person who doesn’t even care about her, and laments the loss of her uncle, her house, and her violin. The blame just recalls for Woo-jin the guilt he feels for the accident thirteen years ago, so he asks her, “What if you died because of me?”

 

In the end, Seo-ri remains to look for her uncle and Woo-jin heads in to work after dropping off Deok-gu. His thoughts remain on Seo-ri’s words though and they keep him distracted enough to completely zone out during his work meeting.

He even attempts to put on Hee-soo’s pink blazer at the end because he’s so distracted, earning him some teasing from her. Hee-soo can’t help but wonder if something is going on, since Woo-jin is acting stranger than usual.

On his way home, Woo-jin drives by the intersection and finds that Seo-ri is still holding vigil there in the dark, hoping to catch her uncle again. As he watches, Seo-ri finally stands to leave. Woo-jin pauses, but doesn’t call out to her and instead just drives on.

Chan waits at the entrance to their house when Woo-jin arrives. He’s worried about Seo-ri who hasn’t returned home after the vet visit. Woo-jin tries to stay aloof, but Chan presses him until Woo-jin says he wishes he could take back the offer to let Seo-ri stay with them for a month.

As soon as the outburst is over, Woo-jin reassembles his mask of indifference and tells Chan to stop worrying over adults and come inside.

Inside, Deok-gu greets Woo-jin and Woo-jin in turn apologizes for scaring the dog in the car earlier. Woo-jin receives a call from a rep on the musical festival jazz team. She’s been trying to send an email to him, but he hasn’t received it yet. He suggests that she verify his email address is correct and try again.

Chan finally spots Seo-ri as she trudges back home in the dark. He’s eager to comfort her with food, and she asks for water before she tells him what happened.

She tells him that she spotted her uncle, leaving out the part where Woo-jin delayed her. Chan is optimistic that he must be nearby, and Seo-ri asks for some paper and tape. Chan proffers the water she requested, but Woo-jin’s entrance into the kitchen shuts her down and she heads off to bed without it.

Chan’s now suspicious that something happened between Woo-jin and Seo-ri during the vet visit. He’s not sure of his uncle’s lack of response, and so he tries to reassure him that Seo-ri will likely move out soon since she spotted her uncle and asks him to be nice to her until then.

Chan tries to cheer his uncle up, even forcing his lips up into what might be a smile, but Woo-jin’s face drops back into its typical passive form as soon as he releases.

In his room, Woo-jin searches online for “Dr. Yoo Joong-sun,” and the photo reveals him to be the man who recognized Woo-jin on the street a few days earlier. Woo-jin recalls the man’s words about not seeing each other again and then a sharp ringing, like the noise from Seo-ri’s backpack charm, floods his mind.

In her own room, Seo-ri kneads her dough ball in her hand, and then charges out of the secret door.

By morning, Woo-jin has packed his bags to stay at his office for a month. It takes a moment for Chan to realize what’s going on, but as soon as he does he rushes downstairs to ask his uncle to stay. Chan doesn’t buy Woo-jin’s excuse that it’s for a work project and he asks if it’s about Seo-ri. Woo-jin dances around the subject.

Even Deok-gu protests Woo-jin’s plan with some barks, but Woo-jin just ruffles his nephew’s hair and tries to walk out the door. As he does, he’s blocked by Seo-ri, and it’s clear that she’s heard their conversation. Chan tries to convince her otherwise, but she doesn’t respond to it at all, and instead just heads off in a haze.

Seo-ri fills her days by making signs to post around town asking her uncle to come find her at the old house. Woo-jin huddles in his office and sketches designs.

Chan makes sure to bug his uncle frequently with phone calls. He gives his best aegyo, and when that doesn’t work, he tries to convince Woo-jin that Deok-gu has run away. Deok-gu tattles on him though with some barks in the background.

Chan hears a door slam in the morning and rushes down to greet his returned uncle, but it’s just his buddies letting themselves in. When Seo-ri walks past them, Chan very deliberately explains that his uncle left for a work project, and definitely didn’t run away.

 

Seo-ri exits quickly, declining even Jennifer’s breakfast offering. The boys ask Chan if Woo-jin left because of Seo-ri, because that’s what it sounded like Chan was saying to them, ha.

Back at the crosswalk, Seo-ri’s tired eyes light up when she sees her uncle again across the street. Given her second chance, she darts across the street and grabs hold of him—only to discover that the man isn’t her uncle.

 

Seo-ri realizes how unfair it was to blame Woo-jin for letting the man escape. She agonizes on the way home over how she will find a way to apologize to him.

She spots Chan out front on the phone with Woo-jin, and Seo-ri rushes up to get a chance tp speak with him. But Chan misunderstands her when she asks for a moment and hangs up on his uncle. Seo-ri pouts at him and walks inside.

Woo-jin is working hard as the set he designed is built, while Hee-soo confronts him about the phone call she had with Chan about Woo-jin’s month-long office sleepover. Woo-jin avoids answering when he gets another call from the musical’s jazz team, and he still hasn’t received the email from her.

Once he hangs up the phone, Hee-soo tries to demand that Woo-jin return home, but he just dodges her questions again by heading to the stage to make some adjustments to the set.

At the house, Jennifer’s plan to make a packed lunch for Woo-jin gives Seo-ri another opportunity to reach out to him. Seo-ri volunteers to help Jennifer while she shops for groceries.

As Seo-ri babbles at Jennifer, a pair of yellow high heels comes into sight. A mysterious figure lingers near the gates of their house and watches as the person walks away. Hmmmm…

Groceries in hand, Jennifer demonstrates her epic cooking skills while Seo-ri helps with ingredient prep and cleaning.

Seo-ri starts to ask if she can come with Jennifer to deliver the food, but Jennifer knows what’s up and asks her to deliver it for her. She sends Seo-ri on, with payment for her labor even, which Seo-ri attempts to reject but Jennifer stands firm with an Abraham Lincoln quote to back her up.

No one is in the office when Seo-ri arrives. She’s startled by their ringing phone, and decides to answer it.

Tae-rin is calling to follow up with Hee-soo about an idea she has for the classical part of the concert. She wants to make classical more relatable to the crowd, and sent links to European concerts she wants to use as a model.

Seo-ri is familiar with the style and gets super excited about the concept. Tae-rin smiles and agrees with each idea Seo-ri throws out. Once they hang up, Tae-rin tells her assistant that she felt like she met a kindred soul.

Seo-ri writes a note for Hee-soo, but drops the pen and scoots under the table to pick it up. Woo-jin, of course, returns just at that moment, and gets a surprise as Seo-ri emerges from under his desk.

He falls to the floor, and then she smashes her head into his as she tries to crawl out. Once he realizes she’s here to deliver food, Woo-jin wants to dismiss her quickly, but Seo-ri is here to apologize sincerely and does so.

At first he assumes it’s still about surprising him and smashing heads, but Seo-ri apologizes for yelling at him and blaming him. She tells him that she thought she spotted her uncle again, but it turned out that it wasn’t him.

Meanwhile, Chan leaves a store with his buddies and thinks he spots Seo-ri on the street. He calls out, but it’s not her. His friends are surprised, since Chan usually has good eyesight.

Chan wonders about it, and the scene transitions back to Seo-ri, as she tells Woo-jin that her desire to see her uncle has her seeing him everywhere on the street. Hmmm, sounds like Chan is starting to realize that he also wants to see someone…

 

Seo-ri asks Woo-jin to return home, but he dodges answering with his usual distraction, a phone call. Seo-ri leaves him to his work, but not without one last request for him to come home.

EPISODE 8: “Apology”

Hyun rushes into the office to ask about the “pink lady” who just left. He’s immediately distracted by the fancy lunchboxes left behind and eagerly opens them when Woo-jin offers them to him.

Hyun wants to know if the pink lady was Woo-jin’s girlfriend, and Woo-jin says she’s his mother. Hyun scowls at Woo-jin’s deadpan joke.

 

At the house, a photograph falls out of a book while Jennifer is cleaning and Chan smoothly catches it in mid-air. The photograph makes him smile, one of Woo-jin and him as kids at an amusement park. Both of them are broadly smiling, and Woo-jin looks so happy in the photo Jennifer doesn’t even recognize him.

Night falls and Seo-ri stays up, hoping that Woo-jin will return after her apology. She can’t hold out though, and by morning she finds herself waking up half in and half out of her secret room.

She rushes upstairs and is excited to see someone sleeping in Woo-jin’s bed… But it’s just Chan, who has fallen asleep there for some reason.

As Seo-ri heads out the door, Chan sleepily answers a phone call from his mother, which startles him awake. Mom mistakes Seo-ri for the maid, and Chan is quick to go with that lie and hang up on his mom who has questions about Woo-jin’s whereabouts.

Seo-ri is plagued with guilt still for driving Woo-jin from his home, and on the street she spots ads for rooms for rent. Seo-ri doesn’t have any money though, right?

Seo-ri recalls her recent visit to the violin repair shop. She intended to stop its repair, but the repairman discovered 200 Euros inside, which he estimates is worth 200,000-300,000 won. Seo-ri recalls the plane ride when her aunt and uncle gave her the money for a taxi home, and now she has the funds to get her violin.

Now faced with the choice of her violin or getting out of the house, she takes the number for the room ad (someone needs to remind her that rent is a recurring expense).

Seo-ri announces her intentions to move out to Woo-jin’s empty design studio. He’s not there, but Hee-soo comes out of another room and lets Seo-ri know that Woo-jin just left. Hee-soo is intrigued by a woman actually looking for Woo-jin.

Seo-ri spots Woo-jin on the street and follows him to a cafe, but it turns out it’s a working lunch and he’s joined by a colleague. Seo-ri tries to spy from a nearby table, but the barista wants her to order something if she’s going to sit.

Seo-ri looks at the unfamiliar coffee menu and tries to order an extra shot by itself. She fumbles with the money in her pocket and asks for the cheapest thing on the menu.

Holding her tiny espresso cup, Seo-ri resumes spying. She’s headed to the water jug shortly, however, when she discovers that coffee is not yet to her taste.

Woo-jin is on the move again, and Seo-ri follows behind. She catches up as Woo-jin stops to measure things. When he ignores a man trying to defend his girlfriend’s honor from what appears to be Woo-jin’s creepiness, that man chases him down the street to resolve things.

Seo-ri dives between them just as the man swings to hit Woo-jin. She explains that Woo-jin isn’t a pervert, just a man whose job is to make miniatures. The man and his girlfriend leave, and Woo-jin turns away as well.

Seo-ri isn’t done though and grabs at his earbuds, only to discover that they aren’t attached to anything. Seo-ri can’t understand how Woo-jin can just stand by and let others think what they will about him. He shoots back that he’s fine just standing by and pretending as though he saw nothing. He tells her that he knows very well that good intentions don’t always yield good results.

 

Seo-ri isn’t satisfied with his answer and continues to let him know what she thinks of him. She calls him out for closing his eyes and heart to those who care about him and tells him a simple “thank you” would have been enough. “I thought you just shrank furniture, but it looks like you shrank your own heart as well!” she yells at him. Woo-jin’s eyes just sink to the ground.

When Woo-jin returns to his office, Chan is waiting for him with pork belly. Woo-jin takes him up to the rooftop to grill with the view of the city.

 

Chan feeds his uncle tiny bites and himself long strips of pork, drinks hot chocolate, and then takes a moment to earnestly ask that Woo-jin return home. Chan says that he understands that Woo-jin needs space, but asks him to live differently this once for him.

Chan saunters away then with a final nod back to his uncle, and tells Woo-jin he’ll be waiting for him at home. Woo-jin offers to drive him, but Chan smiles and says that he’s got fast legs.

Woo-jin receives another call from the musical’s jazz team, and he still hasn’t received their messages. The woman suggests he check his spam folder for them. And what do you know, there are the messages in spam. The woman wonders what it was about her messages that his email marked them as spam, and Woo-jin says he’ll look into it.

As Woo-jin sits, he can’t help but recall Seo-ri’s words about his closed eyes and heart. A text from Chan pops in then, telling Woo-jin that Chan left a photo behind for him, “in case you forgot how to smile.” It’s the childhood photo of them both smiling.

Seo-ri assembles her rental ads and then writes a letter apologizing to Woo-jin and gifting him a wooden stick with a bow tied around it on his desk.

In the morning, Seo-ri feeds Deok-gu one last time. But before she can head out, Woo-jin returns to the house without further prompting.

Chan is delighted to see his uncle again, and as Seo-ri realizes what’s going on too, she’s relieved… and then recalls the note she left on Woo-jin’s desk.

Woo-jin discovers the gift on his desk and pulls the stick out of the bag, revealing a plunger. Seo-ri rushes in and promptly eats the note she left alongside the gift.

Woo-jin assumes her gift is a weird reference to his Mr. Poop status, but Seo-ri clarifies that he can use it to open the skylight in his room. Woo-jin doesn’t believe that the window opens, so Seo-ri demonstrates.

A memory flashes of young Seo-ri trying to open the window and breaking off the handle. Her father came to help, and showed her how they could use a plunger in place of the handle to slide it open.

 

Present Seo-ri stands on the desk just as she did as a kid, and pulls the window open. She asks Woo-jin to join her, but he declines. She closes the window for him and leaves the room. She turns back to relay a message from Jennifer, and finds that Woo-jin has already climbed up on the desk to try to open the window.

Seo-ri shows him the right way to hold the plunger, and the window swings open for the two of them. And with a twist of the wrist, Woo-jin gives us his first big, genuine smile since he was a kid.

The two look out on the amazing view, and Woo-jin smiles at Seo-ri’s childlike wonder.

Seo-ri struggles to yank the plunger off the window as they come down, and we’re gifted with our first skinship of the show as she slips and falls into Woo-jin’s arms. The two gaze intensely at one another… until the plunger falls from above and lands on top of Seo-ri’s head. Seo-ri awkwardly relays Jennifer’s message to come down and eat breakfast, and exits.

Before she gets away, Woo-jin remembers to say “thank you.” She recalls her own words, asking for a simple thanks, and then she walks away fanning herself, wondering why things are so hot.

Woo-jin receives a call from his dad, checking in on things. Woo-jin asks when they bought the house, and Dad answers that it was eleven years ago. That leaves two years between the last time Seo-ri lived in the house and when it was sold.

Woo-jin comes down to breakfast and joins the whole gang. But the conversation with his dad is still on his mind. He wonders what happened in that two-year gap between Seo-ri living here and the sudden sale of the house.

Deok-gu goes to the door and starts barking in the direction of the gate. Woo-jin picks him up and takes him back to the dining room, not noticing anything from the windows.

At the gate, she-of-the-yellow-heels lingers at the gate before turning away and walking down the street.

COMMENTS

Alright Miss Yellow Shoes, reveal yourself already! Conflicts so far have been mostly contained to the house and individuals. Woo-jin and Seo-ri had their first interpersonal conflict, but the show has been holding back throwing others into the mix until things settled in the house. Now that Woo-jin is coming around to Seo-ri’s presence, it’s time to set up some shake-up with ghosts from the past. So the real question is, whose past does Miss Yellow Shoes haunt, Woo-jin’s or Seo-ri’s?

These episodes primed us for not one, not two, but three upcoming mysteries. Miss Yellow Shoes is the most obvious, but they’ve given way too much time to the missed email exchanges from the musical’s jazz team for that to not be somehow significant. And the final shadow waiting in the wings is Dr. Yoo. I suspect he was a psychologist that Woo-jin worked with after the accident, and I’m wondering if he’s going to have some pieces of the past that help Woo-jin realize who Seo-ri really is.

Chan just wants his uncle to find himself again, the version before the accident. And what he remembers is his uncle’s warm smile, the smile he sees in the photo of the two of them when they’re young. He tries to force one out of Woo-jin in the kitchen, but it’s Seo-ri who earns the first genuine big smile out of him in the end. Woo-jin may not yet know that she’s the girl he admired from afar, but her energy still reaches out to him and manages to cut through all the ice he’s built up around his heart these last thirteen years.

For Woo-jin, getting involved means letting others down. Seo-ri’s misplaced blame reinforced that barrier for him, when he finally let some of those emotions slip. But with Seo-ri’s desire to do right by people and Chan’s efforts to get his uncle to smile again, there was no way that Woo-jin was going to be able to hold out against them for long. Now that he’s finally interested in figuring out what happened to Seo-ri and her relatives, I’m super excited for all the tension that can be built until he finally figures it out.

I really like Seo-ri so far. I could see criticism that she’s too good and pure, but I like that it feels right with the idea that she is still a young person in an adult body. That energy will be a beacon for Woo-jin after all this time apart.

Is anyone else surprised that Seo-ri hasn’t been taken for a makeover yet? She’s been wearing the same clothes for two weeks now. I bet it makes it easy for Shin Hye-sun, and everything looks super comfy. I guess there really isn’t anyone with the ability or desire yet to take her out for that new wardrobe montage. Her childhood friend has been very absent lately, but I’m hoping we’ll see him again soon.

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