Following on from the first episode, Melting Me Softly returns with another rather slow slice of drama, one that does little to quiet the concerns growing over TvN’s newest show taking up that prime-time slot on Saturday and Sunday nights.
The episode starts with policemen looking for someone in a field before we cut to a police station with the Dong-Chan family looking for their son. The mother asks Hyun-Gi where her son is as she knew he was with him. Hyun-Gi then meets with the head of the broadcast station, Hong-Seok, who tells him to lie about the experiment and say they weren’t involved. Hong-Seok decides to talk to Ha-Young instead as she knew about the experiment as well. As it turns out, everything about the experiment has disappeared and the professor has been killed too.
Left to ponder over this mystery, we then cut to the 9 o’clock news where we see that Ha-Young is now the new anchor. One of tonight’s featured news happens to be about Dong-Chang who has now been missing for 50 days. Mi-Ran’s family are also watching the news, looking devastated. After a brief flashback a policeman arrives at the lab but finds nothing. Unbeknownst to him, as the camera pans underground we see the professor lying unconscious in a hospital bed, and all the frozen people in their cryogenic chambers are there too.
Another flashback sees Dong-Chan having dinner on a big boat with his parents where his mum tells him that Ha-Young is not good enough as she doesn’t come from money. The same evening, Mi-Ran and her family watch the fireworks and the boat Dong-Chan is on. Mi-Ran promises Nam-Tae that she will take him on a boat like that one day when she earns a lot of money.
Back in the present, Mi-Ran receives a letter saying that after 4532 hours their daughter is still alive. The letter also contains a picture of Mi-Ran in her Cryogenic chamber and a message demanding they not to tell anyone about it. From here we then jump forward to the year 2000, where we find Mi-Ran’s friends reminiscing about one of the talks they had with her in the past. Mi-Ran wanted to be a landlord when she grows up and have each member of her family on each floor. After an incident involving Mi-Ran’s boyfriend, we jump back to 2019 where Hong-Seok is now the CEO and he yells at Hyun-Gi for getting low ratings. We also see Ha Young is still the main news anchor for the channel.
During a conference about cryogenic experiments, Jo Gi-Bum checks the CCTV footage of the lab and sees that the professor has left his bed. In the lab, he starts the process of defrosting Mi-Ran and Dong-Chan. However, he collapses soon after. While down on the floor, both candidates slowly wake up and struggle to walk. Dong-Chan steps outside first but collapses too before being taken to hospital. As doctors check his vitals, they’re shocked to find his body temperature at 31.5 degrees.
Meanwhile, Mi-Ran manages to get on the bus but is confused about the increased bus fare. At the broadcasting station, Hyun Gi shouts at his staff about the latest rating results. Dong-Chan calls him from the hospital, cursing for not staying with him during the experiment and as Dong-Chan’s family arrives, everyone is shocked to find he hasn’t aged.
Mi-Ran arrives at her house soon after, only to find it empty. After trying to fix her mobile phone, she heads to the police station to get help finding her family. The police manage to find their number and Mi-Ran leaves them a voicemail. When Mi-Ran’s mother hears the message, the family rush over to her but just miss their daughter who leaves in a taxi.
Back at the lab, the assistant, Gi-Bum, makes a phone call to someone telling them the frozen humans have come back to life. Hyun-Gi relays the news about Dong-Chan to Hong-Seok and they both start to panic as they kept the experiment quiet from everyone. Dong-Chan regains consciousness and is shocked to see his family have aged so much. As both main characters reach their destinations, they’re shocked to find out that it’s 2019.
Melting Me Softly’s second episode improves a little from the first but still doesn’t quite reach the heights expected after the premiere. The first half of the episode spends a lot of time in 1999 and we’re given yet more flashbacks to deal with while jumping backwards and forwards through time. While these jumps back are clearly designed to flesh out the characters, at times it just doesn’t feel like the episode, and the plot, is in a hurry to actually progress forwards.
Despite this, the second half does pick up when Dong-Chan and Mi-Ran finally awaken and seeing their family’s reaction was, as expected, pretty funny. Going forward, it’ll be interesting to see more of Dong-Chan and Mi-Ran’s reactions as they deal with the changed world around them.
The mystery surrounding the secret lab and who was in charge is quite intriguing too and should hopefully bring some suspense into the show. The first two episodes have been rather slow though but hopefully Melting Me Softly can improve and bring with it more dramatic and amusing moments which we’ve come to expect from shows like Hotel Del Luna and Memories of the Alhambra. Only time will tell though of course.