You know how every year you get super excited about your New Years resolution so you do too much? We are there right now. I don’t know if we are in over our heads, but we wanted to hit the ground running this year so we are picking up another drama to live recap. We wanted to see if we could do one a day in the morning before starting our regular workday and 6 am shows are perfect for this. Longing Heart is only 8 episodes so we won’t be at this breaking dawn er’day recap-a-thon for too long though. My brain, hands, and heart can only take so much y’all.
We watched the first episode of Longing Heart this morning and it was really cute. It was well thought out and well acted and the cinematography was amazing. The story line has several interweaving parts that build the story up but also make it really fun to watch because you don’t really know if a previous scene was important until the end of the episode. Or at least that is how it was with the first episode.
Y’all, I’m not going to lie. This recap is a hot mess. We did it late and live recap style because that is really the only way we can watch and recap a drama at the same time. But we did pause the drama in some parts, so we have a longer than normal recap here. I think I also might have a few more typos than normal (even though I did go through it to check). I just feel like a lot of typos saw me coming and where like, “You will not get me!”
LONGING HEART RECAP: EPISODE 1
We open on a lovely harbor that changes to a high school setting. Everyone has folding phones and our main character comes to the school with his smartphone, but he doesn’t have a signal. He shrugs and goes into the classroom as the bell rings. We are inside the classroom right along with our lead and we get started with the day.
The first student stands up and the screen pauses on him. His name is Kim Min-seok and he has been our main characters best friend for 20 years. But Kim Min-seok is still in high school and our main character, Kang Shin-Woo is in his late 20s (so, yeah, that has to be weird).
KIM MIN SEOK
Good grades A+
Future Sora’s husband A+
Good cartoonist A+
We see another student shake someone awake behind him. This student is Choo Gun Deok who has also been friends with our main character for 20 years.
CHOO GUN DEOK
Is he a Cyworld oljang? (he is handsome online)
His relationship with women is very complicated (his ideal woman = the woman he has first met)
He has nothing in his brain
The students didn’t erase the chalkboard from the last class, so Shin-woo is looking for whoever is supposed to take care of the cleaning duty for that day. A girl hops up and starts cleaning it right away.
Good with crafting
Future Min-seoks wife
She looks tough, but she has a lot of affection (but it would be dangerous to bother her)
On the teacher’s desk is a gift of a snack from Han Ji-soo that says for the teacher to enjoy it. We see that Han Ji-soo is our main characters first love.
Shin-woo tells everyone to prepare for the day and get their homework ready. Young Shin-woo gave his homework to someone to give to Ji-soo. The teacher knows that this is his younger self and he tells us that he is actually from 2017.
Shin-woo is talking with a friend at a coffee shop on the phone. The friend is telling him to talk to a girl military style and just start dating, but Shin-woo is just annoyed that his friends are still doing this to him.
We cut to the friends’ house and the Cyworld Oljang is a famous actor now, but his friends still treat him like their friend. They talk bad about their famous friend not dating the girl they set him up with and Shin-woo tells them that he didn’t want to date her. They argue about that a little bit and Shin-woo tells them that his heart rate should increase when he is with someone he likes. They say it is because of Ji-soo and that he should date a woman, any woman. The friends start bad talking him because he has never dated another girl after loving Ji-soo. It has been 10 years and he still hasn’t dated anyone else.
Shin-woo says they are just dumb, it isn’t because of Ji-soo and it isn’t a disease to not date anyone. But his friends tell him that he doesn’t date ANYONE. That is not normal. Shin-soo tells them that he will have a doctors visit if it is what they really want and then we see him at a psychiatrists office.
But Shin-woo isn’t acting right at the office and starts to curse his friends because his friends sent him to a homosexuality specialist doctor. But the doctor thinks that maybe he has an anger management problem or a multiple personality disorder. Shin-woo doesn’t think he needs her help though but he opens up. His problem is that his heart doesn’t pound anymore after his first love. She says that, as someone older than him, it means that if he doesn’t like any new person then it means that he is still in love with that other person. He already has someone that will make his heart pound, so he needs to look at himself and into his own mind and think about it.
Someone heard something about Ji-soo at Seoul hospital. Someone saw her there. Shin-woo looks at the hallway and it looks like he might see her as a doctor in the hallway.
SW – Maybe I just don’t want to admit it. Even though I know the answer to the question, I just tried to ignore it.
The song playing is talking about hiding your love, but you can’t hide it.
SW – whatever I do, the wrong answer is the wrong answer and the right answer is the right answer.
SW drops his phone and his heart starts pounding a lot. Now Ji-soo is right in front of him and he grabs his heart as he looks at her. He thinks back to when he first met her and all the moments he had watching her.
SW – Ji-soo ya…
Ji-soo and Shin-woo go to a cafe and JS tells him that it is strange that they can meet like this. She asks him how he has been and how everyone else has been. He says that they have all been fine and maybe she has seen their actor friend on tv. he tells her that Sora and Min-seok got married and already have two kids. But Ji-soo cuts to the chase and asks why SW is in the hospital. But then she realizes that she is the only one asking questions.
SW – I thought I would have a lot of questions to ask you, but its just enough to be together like this
JS – Don’t’ you have any questions for me or anything
SW – I had something to tell you, I missed you a lot
JS – I’m sorry, I didn’t even think of you. You and the moment and the other kids.
SW – 10 years passed, I understand, it can happen
JS – (looks at watch) yeah, I shouldn’t be out too long
SW – I have to be out too
JS – isn’t today your mom’s memorial?
SW – You remember that?
JS – I really have to go.
She gets up to leave and they say their goodbyes but SW wants to take her to the hospital. SHe says it is okay, but he runs after her. He remembers his question
SW – 10 years ago, something happened to you right? What happened? Why did you leave us without telling us anything?
JS – So what do you want to say? So you resent me? So you hated me?
SW – So, I worried about you and I was sorry. I was worried about what happened to you if something bad happened. I didn’t know about it back then, but if nothing happened, then that is good.
JS – You should have gotten angry, what kind of crazy girl is she? You should have cursed me and forgotten about me. Why do you worry about me and are sorry for me?
SW – because I, (he sees her engagement ring)
JS – We are really connected, because we meet like this, if we have any connection then it is a bad one. You said you wanted to see me. But for me, I didn’t want to see you. Lets never see each other again. I think that is better, it is good for the both of us.
She leaves and walks away. He turns and looks at her walking away from him.
While driving home he thinks that he shouldn’t have expected anything because it has been ten years.
2007 GARAM ISLAND
SW gets on a bus as his younger self. He is in his uniform and Ji-soo is there as well, she is sleeping in her seat. SW goes to stand next to her and notices that her name is Ji-soo. he thinks that they are in the same year, but he hasn’t seen her before, so maybe she is a transfer student.
The sun bothers her a little so he starts to cover her face from the sun. Other kids get up and leave but he stays there covering her face. He wakes up a little and he pretends like he is sleeping behind her. She rushes out as she realizes that she missed her stop and she looks lost. She asks someone where Garam highschool is and they point to it. Then SW runs ahead of her so that she will follow him.
He goes to the back door and hops over the fence. She is struggling though. SW asks if she needs any help and he drops his bag and goes to help her. She falls into his arms and he spins her around as he adjusts to her weight. it is love at first sight.
SW – I knew at that point that people can fall in love at one moment (love at first sight)
He puts her down and she tells him thank you. But he notices that her skirt is torn on one side so he gives her his bag to cover her skirt. he tells her that he helped her so she should carry his bag and she is confused and feels like she is a backpack shuttle bus for him. But then she sees her skirt and realizes that he is doing her a favor. SW walks away and his heart is beating harder and he is smiling.
SW – I became 300 times happier from her facial expressions (when she is happy)…I was sad for 300 times a day as well (when she is sad)…
A lot of men go to Ji-soo and ask her for a date, but she turns them down and says that she loves someone else already. her friend thinks that she dumps all the most popular guys, so who is this other guy that she likes? She just smiles and doesn’t answer. meanwhile, SW is watching this exchange and decides not to approach Ji-soo. he throws his gift for her in the trash.
SW – After one moment, I regretted it for 3000 days. I never forgot about it.
He has stopped thinking about the past and gets a phone call from his friend. They ask him about his meeting with the doctor and the doctor says that he is okay. But he says that his heart is pounding so hard that it makes him sick. That is a new problem that he has, but he says it like a joke.
He meets with his noona friend and sister and they have some playful banter back and forth. they talk about their old neck teacher and her wedding and all these things and they say their goodbyes. Then SW asks his sister what really happened. His sister says that the future husband has a lot of issues with money and family and everything. SW wants to know why she would get married then, but the sister says that they have been dating for 10 years so it is more complicated than just breaking up. She tells him that they should do their mother’s memorial service.
Ji-soo has put a mark on her calendar and looks at her ring. She knows that today is SW’s mom’s memorial service and leaves. One of her colleagues is there and looks at the calendar that has a circle on it.
Cut to the memorial service. SW and his sister are talking about their mother and they want to tell her that they grew up well and all those things. He leaves and goes to a room. In the room he finds a book that says “looking for lost time” he picks it up and pats it off. It looks like he has been looking for this book for some time now.
Flashback to the funeral of his mother. His younger self is there and is distraught at the funeral. Someone gives the book to him and says that Ji-soo told him to give it to SW. They wonder where Ji-soo is and it looks like someone that looks like Ji-soo just left, but perhaps it isn’t Ji-soo.
SW looks at the book and then we see him at school the next day. His classmates check to see if he is okay and then Sora runs up to them. She says that Ji-soo went to study abroad (she left the town). They are pretty shocked that she just left like that without telling them. SW goes to her cubby hole and sees that it is empty. So his mom left and his love left.
Back in the present SW wonders what happened. He flips through the book and a note falls out.
I have something I have to tell you.
Can we meet at eleven pm at firefly bridge?
I will wait over there tomorrow.
Shin-woo is shocked at this letter. He thinks that she must have returned this book to him because of this note? He walks over to the bridge that they were supposed to meet at ten years ago and rests his drink on the bridge. He pulls out the note and reads it again.
SW – If I flip through the book and if I found the book and met you here as was written on the note…
He imagines her standing there in her school uniform looking happy and anticipating his arrival
SW – …what would have happened between us. At that moment I prayed. If I can turn back the clock and correct everything…
A bike messenger comes over the bridge and hits him. The note flies out of his hand and he falls over the bridge trying to get it.
The bicyclist is carrying a newspaper that says a female doctor was hit by a drunken driver and is in “critical condition”…but the newspaper headline fades and changes to “dead”. It looks like she was texting to Shin-soo that she was sorry. Perhaps the car hit her when she was texting…
A montage of everything they said to each other flashes over SW as he is in the lake. It looks like he is also dead in the water…but all the newspaper particles start to float over him and everything goes black.
The blackness turns to white and we see SW wake up and spit some water from his mouth. he hears someone ask him if he is okay. His eyes focus on the person and he recognizes it as his mother. The woman is concerned and keeps looking at him. SW is concerned as well, he remembers the water and falling, but how did he end up there?
SW – If my mom is in front of me, then this situation is one of two things. The first thing: this is a dream.
He hugs his mother tightly and his mom hits him and tells him to get off of him.
SW – This isn’t a dream, so second…I heard that when I die, the person I want to see the most will come to pick me up…
He looks at his mother wearing ajumma clothing and he wonders why his mom came to pick him up in those clothes. He speaks in a relaxed way with his mom and he wonders why she came to great him after 10 years. But his mom does not recognize him and tells him that she is not his mom. SW still doesn’t know what is going on and keeps calling her his mom. But she snaps and says that if he is really her son then she will beat him up. Look what he is doing. Everyone is out working but he is just napping on the street?
Another younger woman comes up and wants to know what happened. SW recognizes her as the neighborhood noona and wonders why she looks so young. But his mom and the noona just think that SW is a little off. But then neighborhood noona recognizes that he is the math teacher from Seoul. SW doesn’t know what is going on, but he says that he is a math teacher and he is from Seoul…
They tell him that it is his first day right? SW thinks that he doesn’t have to be a teacher in dead people world, so what exactly is going on. The mom and the agassi start talking about SW. SW quickly pulls out his cell phone. It says that it is 2007 and the newspaper also says that it is 2007. He realizes that the answer isn’t the first or second choice. It is a choice that he would never have thought of.
SW – I time traveled!
Cut to the highway and we see that the neighborhood noona is just now learning how to drive and is giving SW a ride to the school. She almost gives SW a heart attack by driving crazy. SW thinks he is not waking up from his dream. Neighborhood Noona asks him if she looks like his sister and SW says that he has a friend who is just like his real sister that she reminds him of. Then he thinks that she changed his diapers once upon a time ago, how can she not recognize him?
But then the car swerves, we see that they almost have an accident as she swerves to avoid hitting a bus. SW tells her that she shouldn’t look just in front of her, she should look at the sides and all those things!
She pulls over at the school and he gets out and thanks her for the ride. She looks like she is very smitten with him as he leaves.
Now SW is realizing that he has time slipped to 2007, but he still can’t believe it. His cell phone is waterproof, but it still doesn’t have a signal. Then a bag hits him in the head and he looks over his shoulder and sees his younger self hop over the fence. He is shocked to see him, to say the least. His younger self tells himself that he is sorry (confusing I know, but I’ll try to keep it straight). They introduce each other and SW says that he is a new teacher. This makes younger SW look over his shoulder at the gate and then make up a lot of excuses as to why he is late, he was sick, and all those things.
But SW just realizes that he was the type of kid that bluffed a lot. He says that he was going to let him go, but if he does then it is like hitting his own face with his own fist. He lays into his younger self and tells him that he never got sick when he was younger and never saw the doctor for 10 years either. Younger SW tries to change it to his mom being sick and that is when SW grabs his ear. Then he yells at Short Neck Sam (sounds like Mozart teacher). No one knows about this nickname though because younger SW hadn’t made it yet. Short neck Sam goes up to him and wonders why this teacher has this salutation for him. But then he just lays into younger SW and tells him to clean the entire school playground.
SW thinks that it is really 2007 and the past changed because of him. But he thinks that he will be called Mok Jat Sam anyway so it doesn’t matter. But then he sees that the girl he loves is hopping over the fence and he sees her. He realizes that the past can change and this must be the reason that he came there. he walks over to her and helps her over the fence. She falls into his arms and he spins with her. It is love at first sight all over again.
But he lets her go because he is the teacher now. He gives her his jacket (instead of his book sack) and says that she should carry it because he helped her. He tells her that the transfer student is late on the first day. She thinks that he is her teacher and he smiles and goes ahead of her.
While in the classroom the students are talking about how there is a transfer student. Younger SW wonders if it is a boy or a girl, can they play soccer well? Then they start to talk about the classroom teacher, do they know who it is? The friends start to tell him about the new teacher (their old teacher is out on maternity leave). The younger SW thinks that he has so much bad luck and he leaves.
He just misses his older self walking with the new student. They go inside and the Cyworld uljang pretends like he is a good student, lol. He wants to get to know her and tells her that she can keep his books and does he need any other textbooks? He acts so nerdy and basically the opposite of his real self.
But SW knows his friend and starts to talk about how his friend needs to just study before it gets too late. He tells his other friend (the head of the class) to clean Ji-soo’s seat. The two friends wonder how this new teacher knows all about them. SW also tells his friend to return his glasses to his other friend. He then wonders if something belongs to Sora and says he will let it go today, but not next time. Sora hurries up and runs to get her things and put them away.
SW tells his students that he is their math teacher, he is 28 and he is from Seoul. He tells them that he knows everything about them, so if they have some fake excuses to skip class, he will warn them and he will tell them not to lie. He also tells them that it is good to see them again (after looking at his friends). Han Ji-soo then introduces herself from Seoul and says that meeting like that was their fate. She asks where she should sit and SW tells her that her seat is next to Shin-woo. She says she doesn’t have textbooks and he says to borrow Shin-woo’s. She also doesn’t have a school gym uniform and he tells her to borrow that form Shin-soo as well.
Cut to him walking down the hallway. He thinks that if he connects his old self and Ji-soo together then they will have a good connection from now on. he thinks that he can change their past. he smiles as he thinks about what Ji-soo said about meeting like this was their fate, and he happily walks away.
Shin-woo is outside cleaning all the trash from the yard. He is upset at the new teacher and kicks the trash.
Cut to the classroom. Sora blocks Ji-soo from walking out the door with her leg. She looks like a bully, but she wasn’t actually blocking her, she kept her from tripping on a pen. Then she tells Ji-soo to take off her clothes and shows her a knife. Cut to Sora happily sowing up Ji-soo’s skirt. She says that she is a perfectionist and likes it when things look tidy. Then the classroom leader grabs Ji-soo and gives her a tour of the school. But he has to go pee something serious and yells at Shin-woo to show the new student around. Shin-soo says that he has to clean, she is a girl, he doesn’t like it, girls can’t play soccer or basketball, so there is no reason to be friends. He doesn’t care.
Ji-soo heard all of this and tells the classroom president that she is okay, she can look around later. They part ways and SW looks at Ji-soo walk away. But he doesn’t really care about her and wonders instead about when he will finish cleaning all this.
SW, noona teacher and Mokjat see each other and SW wonders why noona is laughing at Mokjat teacher. She says that she heard about the neck joke, it was so funny. But SW realizes that she shouldn’t think that he is funny, she should think that he is handsome. In the past, she thought that he was really handsome and had a thick neck like a real man. That is what made her attracted to him. In the present, he tells her that a short neck is attractive right? But she says that it is a laughing point for her because she hears kids laughing about it now.
SW is distraught because the moment where Nahi noona got attracted to Mokjat got ruined. SW starts talking to himself. He tells Nahi that she will meet someone much better later. But Nahi just says that his tense if wrong. Not future tense, but present perfect tense (because she likes him now!). She says that she met someone like that this morning and she pokes his shoulder. SW tries to quickly tell her that he has someone that he already likes…but she had already left. He thinks that this is a big problem. So many moments have disappeared. His moment of being attracted to Ji-soo at first sight also disappeared. What should he do!
YOUNG JI SOO OUTSIDE
He is still cleaning and tries to throw a ball in the hoop. It doesn’t hit and he thinks he has bad luck. The ball rolls to someone and he tells that person to throw the ball to him. The sun is in his eyes and he sees that person pick up the ball and throw it in the hoop. That person is Ji-soo and she looks perfect.
JS – I am good at basketball and I play soccer well as well. I am athletic. If you can score a basket then I will be your friend.
SW – You give me pain and medicine. Okay, let’s do it.
He shoots the ball with one hand and it goes in.
SW is watching this and smiling.
SW – I think that luckily, fate went back to its own place.
His younger self and Ji-soo shake hands. She tells him that she is a transfer student and he tells her that he knows. Because of her he came to school late and has detention.
She doesn’t know what happened but we cut back to the moment when they were on the bus together and he was blocking the sun from her face.
SW – Maybe fate can be a little wobbly and twisted a little, but then it is back to where it is supposed to be.
The bus swerves because of the noona teacher from before and Ji-soo’s head moves with the swerve and her lips touch JW on the cheek while she was still asleep. She kind of wakes up, but not really and rests her head back on the window. Ji-soo became aware of her at that point.
Young SW and JS shake hands and she says that she heard his name the most this day.
SW – First love is starting all over again. Hopefully, this time, it is happily ever after.
The starting point of love is a mini-homepage.
Today is the 12th day of the month so boy #1 Gang Shin-woo…
You have to click like on whatever she likes first
…and girl #10 Han Ji-soo.
I really like this book
Do you also like this book
1-2-3 (to invite her to his mini homepage)
You fool, just click! You shouldn’t regret. Because you live so pitifully, even without ever confessing to her.
Whatever! Should I say this in this moment?
Whatever you do, you screw up everything, I will just feed you everything.
Why should I go see a doctor?
Ji-soo is okay
You should know if she is okay or injured or whatever!
What does it matter!
Because now I realized too many things
This show is really adorable. It is giving me Go Back Spouses mixed with Answer Me 1997 vibes which is great because I loved the hell out of both shows. It is also really interesting how a person can go back in time, but instead of being a younger themselves, they are actually living independent of their younger self and get to watch everything as an outsider. That is an interesting choice and I’m looking forward to seeing where it goes.
We really love this drama. It is so cute and the writer looks like he/she put a lot of effort into wrapping multiple storyline together. If this drama continues like this then it will be worth waking up early in the morning to watch.