Oh, we're a bit late today so shall we just jump into the recap of the third episode in Cheese in the Trap?

Watch episode 3:

We were left with Seol and her confused expression after Yoo Jung told her she was just like the others. At home she ponders this, trying to understand what she did so bad to deserve such look in his eyes and those words, but she can’t come up with anything. Yes, she set him up with Ah Young but that isn’t that bad, right?

Regardless, the next day when Yoo Jung sunbae comes in the classroom and she tries to greet him, he completely ignores her. It’s back to square one, to the treatment from the year before. Still, being the mature one, she stands up and goes to apologise to him, but he barely acknowledges her presence, so she insists, trying to explain she didn’t mean any harm with introducing him to Ah Young but with a cold look in his eyes he tells her he’s busy talking. Meaning: she’s bothering him. Seol doesn’t have a chance to say any further because professor Kang comes in so it’s time to start the class.

She’s a witch, she really is and I’m so happy I didn’t have to take her class because she enjoys giving the students group projects, knowing how these stress them and affect their grades. She informs all the students the groups have been formed and are online to be checked, so she orders them to do that and gather in their respective groups. I feel sorry for Seol, not only the professor knows she is likely to do all the job, which is exactly what she mustn’t do, but she is also with Sung Cheol sunbae and other two girls who seem too happy to be with her, knowing it’s an A+ for sure. They name her leader without further discussion while Seol looks doomed.

They leave the class and her other team mates quickly follow Yoo Jung sunbae and his other friends, leaving her alone with Min Soo. The cold shoulder is evident and it makes her think back of his words, how she was just like everybody else. That makes her reevaluate the situation, wondering if he was expecting different from her and if that was the case, then why. Eventually, Min Soo is the only one that stays and asks her to have lunch with her but Seol made plans with Ah Young so it’ll have to be another time.

With Ah Young, they have lunch outside and Seol asks her if she got home safe after staying with Jung. Ah Young tells her the truth, how he didn’t speak or look at her after she told him about Seol’s blind date, and how she thinks he might be interested in her, reading him as jealous and frustrated. Our Hong doesn’t buy it and says it’s impossible, but Ah Young is pretty sure about it.

I’m spying during that time, trying to see if she’s really pissed at us for forcing her into the blind date.

Despite not believing it, she can’t stop thinking about it, which is probably giving her a headache as she starts slamming her head against the lockers. I’m watching that and let me tell you, from my point of view, it looks like she went crazy, which is totally scary for us. Bo Ra is really worried so I display the food coupons as a pace offering because it’s best to go now to apologise before things get worse.

Yes, Seol is angry but not that angry at us, I mean, she wasn’t really ignoring us, she just lost her phone, which by the way, she needs to get back so Bo Ra hands her own mobile for Seol to call. Finally, someone picks up!

In a restaurant, we see In Ho having a meal and when Seol walks in, he motions for her to join, waving her mobile phone. As soon as she sits, he orders two more servings and tells her to eat as well. She rejects his offer, only wanting her phone back, but he says he’ll give it back once she eats. She is drinking water when he drops the bomb: “Are you dating Yoo Jung?” She spits the water, totally flabbergasted by it, which confuses In Ho. He tries to understand why Yoo Jung is around her, she is not his type and she meets others. It really doesn’t make sense to him. Seol tells him he’s being other rude and he apologises immediately. After that, he stands up and asks for his servings to go. Before exiting the restaurant, he thanks Seol for the food. Yup, she has to pay for it and it was quite expensive, but outside she gets her phone back as he tells her she still owes him two more meals for it. She doesn’t look exactly grateful and out of his good heart, he gives her an extra free tip: not to trust Yoo Jung because he’s not all what he seems.

He leaves after that, making Seol think about what their relationship could be for him to speak so negatively of Yoo Jung, and as she’s at that she just groans in frustration, startling the person ahead who turns to be In Ho. She asks him if he’s following her, and he does the same, which is more likely as she’s the one walking behind. He asks if she lives around and she lies, pretending she just ended walking there taking another route. It’s cute who she just does that so badly, he laughs at her for that, knowing she totally lives there.

She manages it inside her house, totally paranoid, locking every door and window, getting the chills, especially when she gets a text from In Ho. Yup, he took her number.

The next day she has a meeting with her group, but it doesn’t look promising. Sung Cheol sunbae is hungover, Min Soo is clueless and the other girl asks Seol to reduce her workload. Hong’s frustrations levels are skyrocketing, I can tell that much. And at that time, another group walks in, not noticing them. In that group, Yoo Jung is included and he barely regards Seol there. When she says they are about to finish Jung just tells his group to look for a different room, ignoring Seol. Immediately after they leave, Sung Cheol sunbae dismisses the session and they all leave Seol alone.

In another room, Jung and his group start organising, offering himself for the final editing and revision, which frees work for the other sunbaes. Thankful, the others can leave already, but before they do, Do Hyun manifests his interest for Seol, saying how the quiet and hardworking type like her can have a hidden side. Jung tenses, clearly hating his intentions, but not saying anything about it.

When they are leaving, they spot Seol alone in the room, studying by herself and Jung’s friend mentions how he and Seol all alike, handling the work and always putting other’s in consideration, but he is still different. He wonders how Seol is supposed to manage Sung Cheol when everyone knows his freeloader personality.

Cue to his words, we can see how Seol immediately has trouble with it. Sung Cheol wants to cancel the meeting, and escape his responsibilities, the other girl also comes with excuses and Min Soo barely knows how to use a word processor. She is frustrated, wondering why she is doing all the work alone. It’s not fair, right? And it gets worse.

For the meeting no one shows up, and then they give her lame excuses that don’t help anyone, but then she sees a Facebook post of Sung Cheol sunbae, drinking with his friends. That gets on her nerves and she storms out, looking for him in the nearby bars until she spots him. She barges inside, ready to demand him to do his work, but Sung Cheol doesn’t even take her seriously even when she’s pleading there. Then Do Hyun shows up and between him and Sung Cheol they made Seol drink, with excuses her sunbae will actually work if she does and such.

Lies. Big fat lies.

In university, Jung is working in the project with his friend when he realises some prints out are missing. The friend mentions Do Hyun was looking over them so he perhaps mistakenly took them, so Jung calls him. Effectively, he has them but that’s not all, in the background they hear the chant of the others for Seol to drink. His whole body tenses even if he acts nonchalant about it, but the moment his friends comments on Do Hyun’s habit of getting girls drunk and then taking them to motels, Jung loses no time in dashing out and to that bar.

Although he goes for the papers, that’s not what he gets. In the bar Seol is already drunk, but they keep trying to make her drink more. She refuses and begs once again to Sung Cheol to just send his part of the project, then she wants to leave and Do Hyun offers to take her home. Right in time, Jung shows up and just takes Seol away, saying he will do. Forget the papers, get the girl out!

He doesn’t release her shoulders and rather roughly escorts her out, scolding her for not being careful and not being able to say no to them. He’s angry and doesn’t listen to what she’s saying, he puts her in the taxi and tells the driver to take her safely and pays. The taxi goes even if Seol complains inside, then Jung goes back and runs into Do Hyun. His expression and eyes are murderously cold and Do Hyun seems a bit pissed that he took Seol like that, but then Yoo Jung just clearly threatens him, saying how his behaviour disgusts him and unless he wants to become a jobless loser forever, to mind his behaviour. The douchebag gets the message.

At home, in bed, Seol wonders what she ever did as for Jung to tell her to come back to her senses. He keeps confusing her. The next day in school, we see Seol rushing to grab the elevator but then when the doors open she spots Jung inside. They just make eye contact, no words or greetings exchanged and she just turns on her heels and takes the stairs instead. Inside, Jung receives a call from his father.

Jung isn’t the only one getting a call from him, In Ho, too, after finding out he’s back in Seoul. The chairman greets him warmly and invites him to come over, after so long without seeing each other. In Ho is reluctant to go, but agrees nonetheless and the next scene is him going to that house, meeting with In Ha and Jung that just comes in.

It’s tense, both outside and inside the house, even when Chairman Yoo seems so happy to see the Baek siblings there. In Ha keeps acting as if everything is nice, stating how she’d love to stay like that forever, suggesting a trip together and more. It’s actually very disturbing to watch.

Them, Chairman Yoo And In Ho alone, he says how he understand In Ho resentment but tries to persuade him to leave that behind and start piano again. In Ho, however, replies he has no interest in that anymore and that no matter what, he doesn’t need his help. He is young and can find his path, so he really wants Chairman Yoo to stop helping him. On his way out, he looks longingly at the piano.

Outside, In Ha shamelessly wants Jung to drive her home but he will not do that and asks her until when she’ll be freeloading of his family, but as I said, she’s shameless and will not stop because that’s all she knows how to do and what’s comfortable for her. She tells Jung should be nicer to her so everyone would be happy and then takes off in the taxi, alone, leaving In Ho behind.

The two guys alone and yes, it’s tense again. Jung mentions how he didn’t expect him to see In Ho there, to which the ill tempered guy replies that he didn’t have a choice. In Ho has no trouble bringing up how Chairman Yoo is aware and sorry for how his son screwed In Ho’s life. It’s an argument, In Ho blames Jung and Jung is just displeased that In Ho is still doing that, throwing at him how In Ho should’ve just accepted the money for rehab. That pisses In Ho even more, to the point he kicks Jung’s car, breaking the side mirror. Then he provokes Jung, telling him to hit him; still acting coldly, Jung just kicks In Ho’s shin, telling him that’s for the repair of the car, and takes off.

Changing scenery, we see now Seol in her room, stressing over how her team mates ignore her and haven’t sent her their parts. For a second she considers just giving up and failing all together, but that’s not our Seol and she’s back to work. As the project is due to the next day, she has to pull an all nighter to finish it. She has one hour left to sleep when she remembers there’s also the presentation. Goodbye sleep, hello more work.

In the classroom, they give their excuses and more, and Seol doesn’t even bother to reply, just handing them their scripts and telling them they could at least memorise them. Then the presentations begin and they aren’t that good, until Jung’s group who exceeds them all. Then it’s her team’s turn. Min Soo is the first and she starts stuttering, just reading the script. Professor Kang immediately catches up and soon has all the others in her hands, revealing how they didn’t even know what they were doing and only Seol worked. But as it was supposed to be team work and they failed at that, the whole group gets a D. For the first time in her life, Seol gets a D, which means she most likely will lose the scholarship. The other team members apologise and such, but then she realises they did their personal work, which only upsets her more. They act as if she is overdoing it, but they don’t realise it’s really terrible for her.

She goes to talk to professor Kang, trying to plead for a different grade for her, but Witch Kang says how to live in society one cannot do it all alone. Seol should’ve convinced her team mates instead of giving up on them, like she did. No matter what, she failed the assignment.

She walks away, defeated when Bo Ra and I come. We ask her about her assignment, assuming she did well, but Seol doesn’t say anything. Bo Ra reassures her she’ll do great in the exam and not to worry because after that, the three of us will go on a trip. She offers options, asking Seol but she’s indifferent, saying whatever is fine with her. Bo Ra suggests something different then, and Seol finally snaps, telling us how she got a D, might lose the scholarship and won’t have money for the tuition. She doesn’t seem the point in talking about depressing stuff when that won’t solve anything when Bo Ra asks her why she didn’t say anything, she was just trying to be considerate. They fight because Bo Ra is hurt Seol never tells her anything, how she feels or what she thinks. Bo Ra walks away, leaving us feeling uncomfortable, but Seol sends me to comfort Bo Ra and she walks in the opposite direction.

She plugs her earbuds and keeps walking.

Jung spots her from the car and calls her name, but she can’t hear him and keeps walking. He follows her, walking behind her with a worried look in his eyes. When they take a turn in her neighbourhood, In Ho appears, making Jung stop cold on his spot. In Ho takes her bag and carries it for her, noticing her mood and asking about it. She is about to say something, considering how everyone tells her she’s been living her life wrong, but then reconsiders it and gives up, walking ahead. In Ho watches her and then just takes a juice from his bag and presses it against her forehead, telling her to cool off. Whatever it is, she needs to forget about it and just cool off. He manages to cheer her up a bit and comfort her, so they walk together. Jung is watching them with jealousy and confusion.

At his home, Jung calls his father to tell him that he should stop helping the Baek kids and should help them to help themselves instead. He suggests Baek In Ha works for the company and that she gets a certification that would actually boost her. Chairman Yoo is pleased Jung is showing interest, and tells him how In Ho doesn’t want their help, so it’s just In Ha. Jung takes himself the responsibility to get In Ha to agree. He calls her when she’s getting a manicure. She just nags that she doesn’t want to when he tells her to get the certification, and then gets distracted when something goes wrong with the manicure as she moved. Jung warns her that it’s her last time, but In Ha is too busy nagging at the other side. He hangs up, throwing his head back and musing how this is the right thing to do, too many things went wrong already.

At her home, Seol is doing her laundry and she just thinks back of Professor Kang’s words, fighting back tears as she considers all her hard work, the part-time jobs and the struggle she had to endure always looking forward because she couldn’t do anything else. She wonders what went wrong when it wasn’t anyone else’s fault but something wrong with herself… She feels very lost, our poor Hong.

The next day Sung Cheol is the one pissed at her, saying how she is just exaggerating and such, obviously trying to make her feel bad. She doesn’t make a comment and keeps walking, running into Bo Ra and having an awkward meeting. She starts thinking how lost she is, how she doesn’t know how to set things straight or when to start to. With her mind busy, she goes to a vending machine to get a drink and as she looks for another coin, a hands shows up and puts the coin for her.

In that moment of enlightenment, she realises that what she can do is doing what needs to be done right now, so she turns around and calls for Yoo Jung sunbae.

They go out to talk and she properly apologises for setting him up with Ah Young. She explains she didn’t get along with him so she could do that, it was as they were getting along she thought he was a good guy and it was okay to introduce them. He looks at her a bit surprised she is apologising for that, and then apologises himself for acting childishly and being frustrated. She wonders why he is frustrated, but then ignores that and asks him if he’s free so she can buy him a meal. He is incredibly surprised, and she offers something expensive, at what he asks how expensive. She is this cute rambling mess, taking seriously his words.

They end up getting triangles kimbap again and he shows his skills at opening them without tearing the seaweed. He is so proud of himself, with that big smile and confesses how he has been practising. She congratulates him and accepts the one he hands her.

Then he walks her home and she walks next to him with her eyes always in him, a smile on her lips. She is just happy they made up. Then she asks him about In Ho, describing him when Jung doesn’t say anything. He eventually says how she shouldn’t get close to In Ho and just ignore him. Seol understand she shouldn’t ask more about it and just ends the topic there.

As they walk, he mentions how it’s a very dark neighbourhood for a girl to walk alone. He offers to walk her every day, but she says he doesn’t need to. When they make it to her house, she starts to say her goodbyes with her happy smile, thankful for his company. He doesn’t move, he just stares at her, making her a bit uncomfortable. She says once again she’ll go inside and has this very awkward stance. He still doesn’t say a thing.

Seol turns around to finally go inside and at that moment he grabs her wrist, making her turn around. Out of the blue he asks her if she’d like to date him and CHAN! That’s where the episode ends.

Omo! What will Seol do? Will she agree to date him? Why is he asking her that? It’s just episode three?! Aren’t we progressing a bit too fast? That surely is refreshing for a K-drama. Aigo, so many questions! What do you all think? Let’s discuss it on the comments below! I’ll see you all for the next episode recap.

—Eun Taek

STATEMENT: This is a work of fiction, no infringement of copyright is intended. By adopting the point of view of one of the characters in Cheese in the Trap, I'll recap the episodes. All right belongs to the creators of the webtoon and drama.