KBS2’s new 100 episode weekend drama (despite showing up on the episodes as just 1 each hour?) starts with a decent pilot introducing us to all its characters. The premise is interesting already and I can imagine that we will be offered plenty of dramatic moments throughout the months to come.
Episode 1 of Homemade Love Story starts with a flashback, from 25 years ago as a woman runs away from a man carrying a baby called Seo Yeon. Thankfully, she manages to hide and seems to escape the man.
We then cut to the present in Samgwang villa where Lee Soon-Jung is hard at work in the kitchen. She heads into her daughter’s room and sees that she has fallen asleep at her desk working. Chae Woon wakes up in a hurry and leaves the house as her mother wishes her luck for the final entry in the screening fashion contest.
Chae Woon heads into work as an interior designer but quickly clashes with architect Jae-Hee over blueprints and which wall to tear down. He dismisses her as she is only an interior designer and tells her to stick to her job despite warnings that there are pipes in the wall. A few minutes later, he is proven wrong when the pipes burst. Chae Woon saves the day though and manages to stop the leak for now. Unfortunately, she falls on him and the two hit each other’s heads.
Meanwhile, Lee Hae-Deun arrives at a yacht party. She catches the eye of a young man who decides he wants to date her. Hae-Deun turns him down but the man becomes insistent and almost violent. Thankfully, she manages to run away and is saved by her brother, Lee Ra-Hoon. The two jump in the water to avoid the men after them. Hae-Dun then has to rush to work in an entertainment company.
Soon-Jung is out grocery shopping for Chae Woon’s birthday and meets her boss there. She then gets a call from her son, Ra Hoon, whom she thinks has got into a prestigious university. Unfortunately, he is just a delivery driver and is lying to his mother about it.
After her job, Chae Woon has to rush to submit her latest portfolio but gets hit by a car. The passenger is Jang Seo-A who recognizes the girl from school. Chae Woon apologises and manages to give her project at the last second just before the deadline.
Man Jung arrives at the villa for an impromptu visit which surprises her sister Soon Jung. The latter heads to the bakery to pick up the birthday cake and we learn that all three children and their mother share the same date of birth.
On her way home, she sits on a bench in a park and a strange woman joins her. She claims that she knows her from when she worked in an orphanage and asks about her children. She then mentions one of them being kidnapped which startles Soon Jung. However, she quickly denies being the person she thinks she may be.
Meanwhile, Seo-A joins her mother Jung-Won for a day at an orphanage. An employee accidently falls on a shell which in turn makes a mess on Jung-Won. Seo-A berates the workers but her mother dismisses the incident.
Jung-Hoo arrives home and is greeted by his wife Min-Jae. He gets angry when he finds a wrapper in front of his house. Min Jae then calls her son, Jae-Hee and asks if he is going to go visit Seo-A and her mother.
Back at the villa, all three siblings and the rest of the family get ready for the birthday celebration. The owner of the building calls Soon-Jung to discuss them moving out as he is planning to come back next fall. In doing so, he’s going to tear down the building and build a new one. The family has been lucky so far as they have been living there rent free. The family then discuss renting out the empty rooms before the celebrations get on the way.
While the family is having food, Chae Woon gets a call from an adoption centre. A couple have come forward believing they might be her birth parents. Man Jung confronts her about her eagerness to find them but the girl defends herself and claims that she has always used her sister.
At the same time, Jae-Hee joins Seo-Ah and her mother in a church as it is the anniversary of her father’s death. Mrs Kim later leaves them to go home and Seo-A acts very smitten with Jae-Hee. The latter berates her and makes her say that they are just friends and the two head for dinner together.
We then see Ms Kim in her room talking to her late husband Eun No. She takes a pictures of a little girl called Seo Yeon and tells her how much she misses her.
The next day, Chae-Woon heads into the adoption centre to check out her potential birth parents. She crosses the path of Mrs Kim who was there to thank the workers for their dedication.
The episode ends with Chae Woon feeling torn and guilty after receiving a text from Soon-Jung and meeting her potential birth mother. Mr Kim leaves the adoption centre and wonders why she suddenly feels sad, which is where the episode ends.
The Episode Review
After this first episode, I am already intrigued by this new weekend drama. I really enjoyed Beautiful Love, Wonderful Life so I am looking forward to see what this one has to offer.
At the heart of the story is Chae-Woon who is very determined to succeed in her endeavour. However, she is not completely happy as she longs to know more about her roots. We are also left to wonder if Ms Kim is her real mother which already creates an interesting mystery for the show.
The Lee family reminds me a little of the Moon family from Beautiful Love as they seem to all be adopted. Each member of the family are very different which is bound to create some fun and dramatic stories for the weeks ahead.
It’s also nice to see Kim Sun Young, present in so many great Kdramas of the years, and always a great addition. For now though, Homemade Love Story, debuts quite strongly and has a lot of promise for the future.