Answer Me 1988 Episode 7 & 8: The Gift of Being There for Each Other
While there has been no shortage of loving kindness in our Answer Me 1988 neighborhood so far, this week episode seven saw our neighbors band together to make Christmas just a little brighter for everyone, and episode eight saw them stand up for friends, family members, and even strangers to give them a little needed support that allowed them to cope with stressful situations.
From banding together to offer Jin Joo a little Christmas magic by attempting to grant her one Christmas wish to Deok Sun beating up the girl who was forcing her brother to be her boyfriend, sisters, friends, brothers and parents offered each other many different small acts of support. Even with the tough moments of life that come, being part of a community means being there for each other in good times and bad. Being there for each other makes the bad easier to get through, and might just be the best Christmas gift we all can give. Get in the holiday spirit time travelers and join Wendilynn, Tiara, and me, Kate in this week’s discussion of Answer Me 1988.
Watch episode 7:
Wendilynn: I loved the Christmas theme of episode 7. I did. And I laughed so much when they did the dog/cat sounds in the disappointment music when they were discussing who told the little sister the realities of Santa Claus. Every time that slightly off-tuned music would start I would just start laughing. And I’m so thankful that my Christmas gifts weren’t decided by committee.
Kate: The musical choices have been excellent for this series, I will say. From the Wonder Woman music last week that accompanied Bo Ra as she scared bullies away from Jung Bong, to the cartoon music that overlapped with Duk Seon’s fight scene in episode 8 and the Korean “Jingle Bells” and “Feliz Navidad” playing at the McDonald’s Duk Seon and her friends visited, (and of course, the lovely 80s tunes) the music has added an extra level of atmosphere to the series.
Tiara: Poor Jin Ju being ripped out of her fantasy of Santa. It’s invariably the older kids who break the magic of Christmas. I wonder if I would’ve gotten my Cabbage Patch Kids doll if a committee of my neighbors were picking my gifts. That’s right; I had a Cabbage Patch Kid just like the one Hyung won. The Answer Me series always does pick out great hits. Being a fan of the movie La Bamba, I have a soft spot for Ritchie Valens “Oh Donna”.
Wendilynn: Wham’s “Last Christmas” just made me smile. Especially when you had Jung Hwan trying to be sweet with Deok Sun on the bus. He came as close to confession as I think we’ll get any time soon when he told her to think about his actions. lol
Kate: I had one of those (red-headed) Cabbage Patch dolls too! I did get to pick it though…. There has been so much sweetness in this series, I’m not surprised it is starting to beat the previous series in the ratings. You’d think this much sweetness would become cloying or schmaltzy, but it works. It makes sense that a community that close would want to give Santa back to a small child by offering her a special gift, or that a sister would stand up for her little brother, or Dad, who has a known sensitive streak, would offer to visit an orphan regularly to serve as a father figure in her life and keep her in line.
Tiara: Jung Hwan pulling the earbud out of her ear to put it in his, just melted my heart. I know we’re almost at the halfway mark of the series, but I hope Deok Sun isn’t left in the dark for too long. It’s more than a community of neighbors. They are families who come together to share food, hugs, and good cheer. Anyone want to move there with me?
Wendilynn: The warmth of this community is adorable. And it never does become schmaltzy and I think that comes from the fact that this community genuinely likes each other. Nobody is just tolerating the others. They share everything. When they all started rallying around Jung Bong over his coming surgery and what the family has faced, it made me a little teary eyed. This week had me crying a lot actually.
Kate: Team Taek got a little bit more to work with this week. I still think Jung-Hwan is the husband,but it was nice to see an update on what happened with Taek and Deok Sun’s movie date--which he slept through, hilariously. And Deok Sun chose to wear the pink mittens he got her, not the gloves that Jung Hwan gave her even though he was not her secret Santa. It’s probably all a clever fake out. Then again, maybe they will date for a little while before Jung Hwan and Deok Sun get together. But even those developments took a back seat between the father-son love story that was showcased between Taek and his dad, Mr. Choi.
Tiara: Taek and his father are adorable. It was heartbreaking to watch them both feel inadequate as father and son towards each other. Taek’s Dad not being able to remember dreams or times about his son’s birth made him feel like a failure. He also felt guilty and expressed thoughts his wife should have lived instead of him. It brought tears to see Taek rush home before midnight to give his dad a birthday present. Seeing his quiet, Dad wear these pink mittens with happiness just pulls at my heartstrings and starts the waterworks again. This drama owns me some money for all the tissues I’m using. As for Jung Hwan, I wouldn’t count him out of the picture. I think he’s confusing the crap out Deok Sun and she doesn’t know what to do.
Wendilynn: Oh my gosh, Taek learning how much his dad really loved him was so sweet. And his dad wearing those silly pink gloves just because his son gave them to him was adorable. Why hasn’t anyone snatched up this adorable little family yet? I like watching Taek light up when he sees Deok Sun. It’s like a ray of sunlight has fallen into the room. And then there was the scene outside the Baduk center. Everyone is bowing and fawning all over Taek and then they are all shocked that he’s getting chewed out by Deok Sun. Yet, you could see that was what made him happy, not all the fawning over him.
Tiara: One of my favorite scenes this week Wendilynn. I also loved the moment of Deok Sun dancing and mime-reels Taek into his room. It’s the smile he give her after he figures out not to run away screaming. I adore his smiles. I could just watch him just smiles for hours.
Kate: The Bo Ra /Sun Woo match, I think, got a little more support this week too. When I turned on this week’s episodes, I had almost forgotten we were waiting for Bo Ra’s reaction to his confession. It was unsurprising to see her turn him down and send him packing. There was a moment of softness in her face and surprise before that reaction that gives me hope she will give him a chance. Especially after she realizes that Sun Woo sees the kindness in her. The flashback to Sun Woo’s dad’s funeral makes his feelings for her make even more sense. She offered him a literal shoulder to cry on in a tough time, no wonder he’s looked for the kindness in her actions for the past two years.
Wendilynn: I agree. After the funeral scene, his feelings made total sense. And Bo Ra also didn’t turn him down in a mean manner either. She was really nice about it, for her. She didn’t try to humiliate him. And then there was the secret santa stuff later. There she was being sort of a jerk to him over his gift and then when she learned it was the SC stuff. You could just see it on her face that she felt like a total heel. Her cheating boyfriend, however. Good riddance to that loser. My mouth fell on the floor when he said, ‘Well if I ever do it again, then you can be mad”. I was like… IF?!!!
Tiara: Bo Ra’s boyfriend is a piece of work. I’m glad Sun Woo was there to remind her she’s a good person and a warm person. I wonder if it’s me, but Bo Ra seemed a little kinder and gentle versus her Amazing Warrior Woman attitude. I can understand why Sun Woo feel for his noona. She may have cold hands, but her heart is warm.
Kate: Boyfriend was definitely a total jerk. Poor Bo Ra lost a friend and a boyfriend in the same week. Hopefully she has enough other friends at school to recover from the blow. She may not be ready yet to accept Sun Woo’s support fully, even if his sharing with her will help some. And speaking of love interests in the Sung family, I wonder if we’ll see No Eul’s girlfriend again.
Wendilynn: That family has the biggest heart. Although, when I saw No Eul crying as those girls were harassing him, I wanted to pull a little hair too. That made me laugh, though. That was a funny fight scene. And an even more hilarious police station scene. But, as soon as they learned about the two girls not having parents, how could they turn their backs on them? Makes you sort of wonder why the Mom and Dad fight so much when they both clearly have the best hearts.
Tiara: It’s one of Dad’s endearing qualities. He can’t help but take in strays. He just continues to adopt grandmothers, moms, and daughters. Mom may get angry for her husband’s flipped attitude towards their situation, but she picked a good man.
Kate: It definitely rings true with my family at least. When my sister and I were that age we were fighting with each other all the time, but if someone mistreated her they would have to deal with my wrath. Deok Sun is a good older sister to have. It’s hilarious that she continues to baby No Eul in the present as well. That’s another thing that rings true. It is hard to remember sometimes that younger siblings have grown up.
Wendilynn: I’m the oldest of seven, tell me about it.
Kate: But isn’t that the best part of this neighborhood, really? It feels like family. I think, like Tiara said earlier, a few of us would like to move in.
Are you team Taek? Team Jung Hwa? Or do you prefer to root for Bo Ra and Sun Woo? Do you think the snow man convinced Jin Ju to believe in Santa again? Which moment made you melt the most? Let us know in the comments.
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