Hello, My Soul Mate
Episode 10 of Our Beloved Summer begins with a look at NJ. She discusses her professional life in the limelight, how she’s passionate and bubbly. At least, that’s the persona she puts on for the public anyway. In reality, she has a soft spot for Choi-Ung, seemingly drawn to him by fate thanks to a pop-up ad on a news article bringing his drawings to her attention.
Showing up at the art gallery, she’s unaware that he’s an artist. She admits to Choi-Ung that she’s an admirer of Go-on’s work, as a cute chat between the two ensue. It doesn’t take long for NJ to realize he’s the one responsible for the drawing.
She also realizes that he’s far more interesting than she first thought, leading to the pair growing closer together. Or at least NJ’s feelings growing closer to him!
Back in the present, Choi-Ung and Yeon-Su blag their way through the awkward encounter, with Choi-Ung eventually ushering Yeon-Su away, encouraging the young woman to get a bus home.
When she shows up, her grandma and Sol-Yi are already there, waiting for her. Together, they conspire to learn exactly what Yeon-Su has been up to. Sol-Yi soon susses out that her friend has a crush on Choi-Ung, proceeding to tease her about it that night in bed.
Meanwhile, Ji-Ung and Choi-Ung eat food together but the former clearly can’t stop thinking about Yeon-Su in all this time. In fact, he ends up having an early morning and setting out to work, filming more for the documentary.
Yeon-Su and Choi-Ung both show up at the same time, just as NJ begins talking about Choi-ung. This, of course, catches us up to the epilogue at the end of the previous episode.
When NJ finishes, she approaches Choi-Ung and Yeon-Su, admitting that she’s heading off on a date with Choi-ung. This certainly ruffles Yeon-Su’s feathers, awkwardly watching him leave.
Ji-ung sees this and immediately suggests they should go out to eat together as well. On the walk back to the Ung household, Yeon-Su can’t stop talking about Choi-Ung. When Ji-Ung’s mum appears right off the back of this, Ji-ung decides to cancel plans for lunch. He walks away from his mum but she follows after him.
Alone, she pleads with Ji-Ung to come home. Instead, he tells her to be her usual self and ignore Choi-Ung’s family.
At lunch, Choi-ung learns that NJ suffers from a lot of stress that comes with being famous. Choi-Ung is seeing this for the first time, typified by a couple of ladies rudely discussing whether NJ has had plastic surgery and how skinny she is.
Choi-Ung tries to cheer her up though, which does seems to do the trick. What they weren’t banking on though are reporters hanging around outside, hungry to snap a shot of the two together.
After NJ opens up, Choi-ugn does the same on the drive back. He discusses his past romantic woes and how he and Yeon-Su are trying to be friends again after breaking up.
Both “dates” do well to shed light on where Yeon-Su and Choi-Ung’s desires lie. For Yeon-Su, she’s still torn over being told to stay friends. For Choi-Ung, he refuses NJ’s offer of heading up to her place, as he clearly still likes Yeon-Su and has trouble warming up to people.
That much is especially true later on when Choi-Ung ends up at Yeon-Su’s place for dinner with Yeon-Su’s grandma. It’s awkward and even more so when the old lady hilariously talks outright about Choi-Ung’s pros and cons.
Choi-ung does stay for the whole meal though, but when he leaves Yeon-Su openly admits to her grandmother what’s going on. She still likes Choi-Ung but it’s her fault they’re not together. As Yeon-Su struggles with this newfound friendship, she begins sobbing, allowing her grandma to hug her in a really tender, heartwarming moment between the pair.
That night, Ji-Ung complicates matters considerably. In the street he runs into Yeon-Su and mentions how it’s his birthday. His mother has got him some peaches and seemingly forgotten (or not wanting to remember) that he’s allergic and almost died in the past when he tried to eat one.
This only reinforces how alone Ji-Ung feels, leaving Yeon-Su at a bit of an an awkward crossroads, unsure what to do with this news.
As the episode closes out, Choi-Ung winds up watching some of the edited footage Ji-Ung has been working on, which appears to be a lot of compiled clips of Yeon-Su.
This does seem to indicate that Choi-ung is finally figuring out that his best friend has a crush on Yeon-Su. This makes the epilogue that much more bittersweet too, as Ji-Ung and Choi-ung spend numerous nights together in the past.
Ji-Ung’s mum has a habit of coming and going as she pleases, and this estranged relationship starts to shed crucial light on how alone Ji-Ung has been feeling.
The Episode Review
This chapter works really well to shed light on the estranged relationship between Ji-Ung and his Mum. It also reinforces how hard life has been for NJ too, who has been stuck in the limelight with a bunch of fans who believe she’s had everything handed to her on a plate.
You can understand why NJ likes Choi-Ung so much, who – despite calling himself her fan – seems to be the only one who can act like himself around her.
Alongside that, this episode works so well to accentuate how compatible Choi-Ung and Yeon-Su Actually are as a couple. The “dates” for both Yeon-Su and Choi-ung intentionally don’t have that same spark that these two have together. And I think the writers convey that really well here.
It’ll be interesting to see if a curveball is thrown our way, with NJ and Ji-ung potentially getting together at the end, but either way there’s a nice consistency with this episode that helps to keep the tone finely balanced between drama and comedy.
Next week’s set of episodes look set to be very dramatic indeed!