I checked out this new family drama because of Ahn Jae Wook who returned to the small screen after four years. He welcomed his first child last week and posted a picture of his cute baby daughter yesterday as his token of gratitude that this drama started off well. Writer Jung Hyun Jung (Discovery of Love, I Need Romance series) put my expectation higher and I have soft spots for Shim Hyung Tak, Lim Soo Hyang & Song Ok Suk 🙂 I’ve never watched heroine So Yoo Jin in anything before but she has plenty of acting experience under her belt. With that high expectation, I’m pleased that episode 1 hits all the right spot (for me). The writer briefly introduces each family, their daily lives and struggles plus their different personalities & approach towards life. I’m already loving Ahn Jae Wook’s character ^^ The English title of this drama is Five Enough but I like the literal title Five Children better.
Let’s meet the families first.
Lee Sang Tae’s family and his in-laws’ family
Lee Sang Tae (Ahn Jae Wook) is his two children’s most precious friend, father, mother, protector. After his wife passed away he shoulders full responsibility as dad & mom, raising up Lee Soo (Kim Hyun Soo) and Lee Bin (Kwon Soo Jung) himself. His son describes him as his hero, a Superman. His late wife Jang Jin Young is described as the perfect woman and he talks to her (picture) everyday. Professionally, he’s working as a team leader in fashion industry.
His parents Lee Shin Wook (Jang Yong) & Oh Mi Sook (Park Hye Sook) run a busy restaurant which was gifted by their generous in-laws Jang Min Ho (Choi Jung Woo) & Park Ok Soon (Song Ok Suk) who love to brag about their wealth. Expect to see a lot of disagreements between these two older couples.
Lee Sang Tae is the oldest of three children. His one year younger brother Lee Ho Tae (Shim Hyung Tak) is an aspiring movie director wannabe who unfortunately hasn’t succeeded yet while his sister Lee Yeon Tae (Shin Hye Sun) works at a cosmetic store.
Jin Young’s younger sister Jang Jin Joo (Lim Soo Hyang) is the typical spoiled brat.
An Mi Jung’s family & people around her
After her divorce from her husband Yoo In Chul (Kwon Oh Jung) who had an affair with her best friend Kang So Young (Wang Bit Na), An Mi Jung (So Yoo Jin) struggles juggling between her demanding job & her three young children. Fortunately she’s forced to resign and is now working in Sang Tae’s team. Her grandmother Jang Soon Ae (Sung Byung Sook) helps looking after the kids but they’re yearning for mom’s love and their dad’s presence. Although Mi Jung and In Chul’s relationship are like oil & water but they agreed lying In Chul moved to the USA for work to protect their kids from getting hurt. The kids believe Dad is in the USA, they love the presents ‘he’ sent them and always excitedly waiting for dad’s video calls.
Episode 1 Brief Recap
Lee Shin Wook & his wife Oh Mi Sook are annoyed nobody can look after their restaurant for few hours so they can’t come to their grandson’s presentation at school. They imagine their in-laws are smiling happily sticking to their son line a glue which is exactly what’s happening now. They are there proudly watching Lee Soo’s presentation. Much to his family’s disappointment, his presentation is about mom, this smart boy brazenly reveals mom is possibly the worst homemaker in the country – can’t cook, can’t clean the house, etc etc…
Despite leaving the kids hungry at times, Lee Soo praises mom is the best mother in the whole world because his mother is a man aka his own dad – he’s his mother and his hero – his Superman! Lee Soo is very proud of his dad! He loves him so much. Awwwww… I love this boy already 🙂 Everyday before they leave the house, Sang Tae always reminds his kids to greet their late mother. He blows kisses to his late wife’s picture.
Flashback to the day Dad volunteered at school, brought fried chicken to baseball games & fed his two kids first, played with them, protected them. He’s like a spiderman without a web. When his daughter was sick, superhero Lee Sang Tae rushed her to hospital barefoot while Lee Soo followed behind begging dad to wear his shoes. For Lee Soo, dad was like Batman! After Lee Bin was safely taken care by doctor, Lee Soo knelt down in front of dad, helped him to put on his shoes and in return dad stretched out his arms to hug his son.
Unfortunately for Yoon Woo Young (Jung Yoon Suk), his mother is the total opposite. Jang Soon Ae is wondering where her granddaughter An Mi Jung is at the moment because it’ll be Woo Young’s turn soon. But she’s dealing with a bigger problem now – her cheater ex-husband is back with his lover Kang So Young. They’re given a pastry shop near Mi Jung’s neighborhood and Mi Jung plans to make them move out ASAP! Carrying a golf club, she angrily lashes out but don’t worry, she isn’t that cruel – she wouldn’t hit, she only threatens them.
They divorced three years ago and to protect their young children, she told them dad moved to the USA for work transfer. In Chul who missed his children and So Young wanted the kids to know the truth now but how could Mi Jung proudly tell them that their father cheated on their mother with her best friend whom the kids call her Aunt? She won’t tell her kids the truth – she’s living only for her kids but now they move only 2 bus stops away from her neighborhood! Unfortunately this couple doesn’t have any choice either, So Young’s mom gave the store to them so Mi Jung wants to confront So Young’s mom but…
her mother has been watching her from outside the store for a while – berating her for her ingratitude. In Chul regularly gives child support, So Young’s family also gave her alimony (thinking So Young was the guilty one) which helped her to even live in this neighborhood so if she doesn’t like it – then she can move out instead. Does she own this house neighborhood? If she comes here again, So Young’s mother won’t hesitate to open a store in the smack on her neighborhood!
Woo Young is doing his presentation, proudly bragging about dad whose far away but their hearts are close by. He’s wearing the coat ‘Dad’ sent him now. Neither did he know that his mother bought everything, lying that those presents were shipped from the USA to protect her kids from getting hurt. She barely made ends meet – In Chul only sent a bit of money. But at least he video-calls them every Friday.
Flashback to three years ago when Mi Jung reluctantly (and almost in tears) agreed to divorce her husband who begged to have a divorce first because of his affair. Mi Jung got the custody of their three children Yoon Woo Young, Yoon Woo Ri (Kwak Ji Hye) and Yoon Woo Joo (Choi Yoo Ri). In Chul didn’t want to give up his kids but knowing it’s his own fault, he agreed. In my opinion, he’s a trash dad, how could he give up his own kids for another woman?
Mi Jung hasn’t filed the divorce paper to give him another chance (for their kids’ sake) but he’s already lodged it and moved to So Young’s place! He didn’t even want her to call unless it’s about their kids. Wow what a selfish cheater, a jerk!
Oh Mi Sook and Lee Shin Wook are expecting their grandson Lee Soo and son Sang Tae to have a meal at their restaurant but… Lee Soo went straight to his academy. Jang Min Ho and Park Ok Soon brag they’ve just bought an expensive import car for their ‘son’ Sang Tae! Their rivalry don’t end there… Mi Sook brags their grandson inherits his dad’s and granddad’s taste of food but Ok Soon describes he was an obese baby omo but thankfully he inherits his mother’s side now. Jang Min Ho and Park Ok Soon remind them that they gave this meat restaurant so their in-laws didn’t have to suffer selling noodles in the market anymore. Urgh I’m annoyed. Mi Sook looks angry when Ok Sook talks about her chapped hands but Sang Tae sweetly holds his mom’s hand to calm her down.
Jang Jin Joo (Lim Soo Hyang) is trying most of the stuffs at the cosmetic store before paying. Her sister-in-law Lee Yeon Tae (Shin Hye Sun) notices she uses her brother’s CC so to avoid her overspending, she cancels double products she planned to buy, only leaving things for her nephew & nieces. OMG Jin Joo is as annoying as her mother, bringing up the past that her sister was suffering living in Sang Tae’s family small house and her parents bought her family a restaurant. Yeon Tae reminds her that her brother sold his apartment and used that money. Jin Joo ups her by reminding that her parents gave Sang Tae the money to buy the apartment and now they bought him a new car.
Before her son married his late wife, Mi Sook has already checked with a fortuneteller and was assured that his late wife would live a long life and they’re supposed to live happily with their four children for a long time. She was a sweet woman, and it’s a miracle she’s born in that kind of family. Why did this nice woman leave too early? T_T At least the fortuneteller’s prediction about Ho Tae was right. He becomes successful and brought luck to the family. Unfortunately she doesn’t know the truth. Lee Ho Tae is a struggling movie director who barely has enough money to rent equipment. Mo Soo Young (Shim Yi Young) who works at Mi Sook’s restaurant loves eavesdropping Mi Sook and her husband’s conversation. She’s in love with Ho Tae’s handsome face but her parents are against him because he’s unemployed.
Unable to accept defeat after the equipment he rented was taken away from him, Ho Tae lays down on the cold road, begging them to return the equipment until he finishes filming. But they don’t care, they drive away. Ho Tae doesn’t even have any money to pay his staffs. Then he faces another trouble – he hasn’t paid rent for 3 months yet he filmed there without the property’s owner permission who think he’s a swindler because if he’s a movie director, then she’s Lee Young Ae lol. He cheerfully calls dad who bluntly lies he got the wrong number and abruptly hangs up. Hah. Sang Tae hyung is too busy to take his call now. Poor boy.
As the team leader of a famous fashion brand, he steps out from his office quite often because of his kids. The team will welcome a new Assistant Manager tomorrow but nobody knows about her personal life (whether she’s married or not) due to a change of law which requires them to remove family info from job applications. One of them complains a married woman usually takes a lot of leaves for their children’s sake – making Sang Tae cheekily asks if she’s complaining about him (as he’s just back from his kid’s school).
Observant Sang Tae points out the fatal misprint on their brochures and his co-ordinate who’s in the meeting with Mi Jung quickly goes upstairs (hoping to fix it). $230 pants was printed as $2.3! Mi Jung follows him, oh she’s the new Assistant Manager! Even though she only starts tomorrow, she orders them to put sticker on each brochure to fix the misprint. Sang Tae is impressed! She naturally becomes part of the team and they throw her a welcome party afterwards. An Mi Jung is relieved to get out from her annoying team leader who bitched non-stop, she wished she could humiliate him by taking off his wig to reveal his bald head.
Because they only know about her professional background, the conversation moves on to her personal life. Is she married? Min Jung nods before revealing she’s divorced and has 3 kids. Her grandmother is taking over her kids so it won’t hinder her work.
Sang Tae’s brother Ho Tae is having a hard time finding a place to live so he goes home but cowardly keeps pressing the bell before hiding so nobody sees him. Thankfully his sister is the only one home so he quickly sneaks in, leaving his sister to carry his heavy luggage. What a gentleman hey. He plans to stay in the storage room, where all his stuffs and ‘dreams’ are kept. He brags that his upcoming movie will be a smashing hit but his sister isn’t convinced. While Yeon Tae advises him to get beaten by mom to get his room back, his pride doesn’t allow him too. His parents are depending on him a lot so he can’t disappoint them. Yeon Tae hides her savings because a thief is back (aka her oppa who kept stealing from her).
Mi Jung apologizes for breaking her promise, vowing to accept a punishment by standing in her son’s room for an hour. But her son sweetly forgives her perhaps because he’s too excited as it’s time for daddy’s video call. The kids are counting down… 5.. 4.. 3.. 2.. 1.. then it rings! the kids are greeting dad in English and points out his room is different, did you move, dad? He nervously lies of course while So Young glares at him to tell the truth now. But he can’t, especially seeing how happy his kids are. Woo Ri wears the googles ‘dad’ bought her all the time (because she misses her dad), everyone is reporting how they’re doing, etc. Mi Jung can only silently cry. Grandmother Jang then asks Mi Jung to talk to her husband so she takes the laptop from her kids (kids: noooo mom), goes to her room & tells him that she’s already seen him today and doesn’t want to see his face again. Goodbye!
In another household, Sang Tae gives his kids pocket money rewarding them for helping their Grandmother this week. Using her aegyo, Lee Bin begs dad to give 1000 won more. Jin Joo is back and returns her brother-in-law’s CC, she’s jealous Dad bought Sang Tae a new car so using his money is fair enough counterattack, right? She then consoles Mom who’s really missing her daughter Jin Young especially when she came to Lee Soo’s school today – feeling sorry her daughter can’t see her son growing up into a smart boy.
Sang Tae sweetly reports everything that happened today to his late-wife, proudly bragging he’s their son’s hero – it’s a big deal because it’s rare to get respected by a son. He then reports about Deputy An who looks like a great professional joining his team. The way he described An Mi Jung would make his late wife jealous 😀 But his mood turns somber, realizing it’s not fun… without his late wife. He knows that if she’s still alive, she’d tease that he likes her then he will tell her it’s just a joke and will beg her to forgive him. Damn he really loves his late wife. And if she’s still alive, how wonderful their lives would be.. spending their days together.
Unable to sleep, Mi Jung consoles her brokenness with alcohol then glares at her wedding picture. She curses, wishing her ex-husband is dead! Annoyed he had an affair with her friend. She wants to punch and kick him if she can! Sang Tae on the other hand is okay if his late wife had an affair with a guy (although he knows she wouldn’t do it) because at least she’s still alive and he can still see her face.
It’s understandable why our hero & heroine have a totally different perspective about ‘affair’ though I hope this drama won’t ‘glorify’ affair too much. Mi Jung was left broken & hurt because of an affair that she wished In Chul would die while Sang Tae has never experienced the pain of affair but his wife’s passing left him the biggest hole that nobody could patch so he could accept anything as long as she’s still alive. To sums it up, Sang Tae sees things from glass half full while Mi Jung harbors bitterness because she prefer to see things from glass half empty. After losing his wife, Sang Tae lives his life to the fullest and doesn’t let any negativity and bitterness to affect his life.
It’s only episode 1 but I love Sang Tae. He squeezed his mom’s hand secretly to calm her down, how his gentle smile assures his kids that everything’s gonna be alright, his excitement when he tells his wife about their kids’ achievements but like other parents, he can’t hide his worry when his children get sick that he ran carrying his daughter barefoot. At times I’m wondering why people in KDrama prefer to run by foot instead of catching taxi to the hospital. Maybe because the hospital is only 100m away? Anyway, did I say I love Sang Tae? 😀 He has such a tender heart and he obviously learnt, worked so hard to fill in the role of father & mother for his two kids. Although he’s blessed (with wealthy in-laws), he’s a dependable son & man who is juggling his work and family well. His parents-in-law and sister-in-law are the typical annoying KDramaland rich family while his parents & family are the typical struggling yet hardworking KDrama family. All the kids are adorable in their own ways, they’re so innocent. Lee Soo describes dad as his favorite superheroes put a smile on my face.
An Mi Jung gets my respect because wow she’s a tough woman who protects her innocent children from getting hurt but at times she should learn to tone down her abrasive personality which I think was developed due to her bitterness & extreme anger. It’s been three years, it’s perhaps time for her to move on and enjoy what life has to offer without the extra baggage which repeatedly haunts her down.