I’m back with recaps for another season of ‘Let’s Eat.’ This time, it’s for the third and most recent season starring our usual Yoon Doo-joon as Goo Dae-young. However, he’s joined by actress Baek Jin-hee who plays his love interest Lee Ji-woo in this season. Wrapping up the cast is Lee Joo-woo (you might remember her from Waikiki!) who plays Baek Jin-hee’s step sister Lee Seo-yeon. Last but not least is Ahn Woo-yeon (you might remember him as Park Bo-young’s brother in Strong Woman Do Bong-soon!) who plays Sun Woo-sun and works for a food company.
I recapped the first season of ‘Let’s Eat’ which I totally am embarrassed about when I look at the recaps because they were so bad. Askdfjd. (Okay but to be fair, that was 4 years ago so I was barely learning how to recap back then). It’s weird and crazy to think that it’s already been four years since the first season. I didn’t watch the second season with Seo Hyun-jin, but I decided to give the third season a try because of Yoon Doo-joon who I love and support and because I’m curious as to how the drama has evolved over the years.
I debated and debated and debated if I wanted to recap this drama, because I had doubts and concerns about this season of ‘Let’s Eat.’ However, after watching the first two episodes, I think I’ll give it a try and stick through with it.. for now.
Let’s Eat Season 3: Episode 1 Recap
The first episode begins with a cooking scene. Yes. We’re barely seconds into the first episode and they already starting off with that food porn.
Unfortunately, the food isn’t for our male lead Goo Dae-young to eat. It’s just a cooking show that’s playing on his tv while he lays frozen on his couch. He’s then visited by the landlady of his apartment complex who wants him to find a new place to move in as soon as his lease ends. She has people interested in his apartment unit.
Dae-young is so focused on finding a new place to live he can’t focus at work. He gets another visit, but this time by his friend/dongsaeng Chun-soo (Lee Joo-seung). Dae-young, the food guru, takes Chun-soo to a restaurant popular for their croaker fish. Of course, when Chun-soo questions why they had to travel so far just for some fish, Dae-young goes off on his food rant and gives Chun-soo a history lesson on croaker fish. Hahaha, omg I love this. Dae-young still does his food rants. Ahhhh! He really hasn’t changed.
They eat the fish in the most satisfying, refreshing, and innovative ways ever. The two guys are obviously happy with the food and the drinks (I honestly have to skim through the food parts or else I’ll get too hungry asdkjfd). However, their late dinner is interrupted by loud noises outside that sounds like a car accident.
Chun-soo and Dae-young head outside to check what’s happening and sure enough there’s been a bad car accident with multiple cars and injured people involved. A woman walking her dog witnesses the chaotic and dangerous scene and hurries to rescue people. This woman is none other than our female lead Lee Ji-woo (Baek Jin-hee). After leaving her dog Beanie tied to a pole, she runs to help the heavily injured individuals in their car. She heads to the hospital in one of the ambulances carrying an unconscious man. As a nurse, she does the best that she can to save him.
Dae-young and Chun-soo watch all of this unfold right in front of them. Dae-young still seems to be shaken up by the car incident that he almost got into a few years ago. As they prepare to head back inside the restaurant, Ji-woo’s dog Beanie comes running towards Dae-young. Beanie knocks him down and starts licking him in the face. Aww, Beanie likes Dae-young 🙂
Ji-woo finally remembers about Beanie and runs back to the location where the incident took place to find her dog. However, she runs into Dae-young who’s getting dragged by Beanie along the way and she’s finally reunited with her buddy. Beanie isn’t the only thing she notices though; she also exchanges greetings with Dae-young who she first met in college 14 years ago.
The two college friends catch up over some drinks at a cafe near Ji-woo’s apartment complex after meeting again. More than a decade later, Ji-woo is a nurse while Dae-young works as a financial consultant at an insurance company. He hands her his business card before the two mention talks about relationships and love. Jin-hee isn’t married, but Dae-young is in a relationship… sort of. They bid each other farewell and go their own separate ways. They’ll have a meal together the next time they meet.
As Dae-young drives home, he’s reminded of his good old college days when he sees an advertisement of legendary soccer player Ahn Jung-hwan posted on the side of a bus.
The drama then takes us back to March 2004. It’s the first day of college and Dae-young is almost late. He hurries to his campus and gains a better sense of what the college environment is like. He’s invited to a welcome party that night exclusively only for those in the Department of Engineering.
At the dinner party, all the new students are to introduce themselves. Dae-young starts off followed by three other students: Kim Jin-seok (Lee Byung Hun), Bae Byung-sam (Kim Dong-young), and Lee Sung-joo (Seo Byeock-joon). However, it’s clear that the other guys in the department are only interested in knowing if the guys have any sisters or know any girls. After their introductions, all the guys swarm around Sung-joo because of his connections to plenty of older girls. Dae-young, Jin-seok, and Byung-sam quickly become acquainted after being left out and they’re invited to Dae-young’s apartment that night.
The next morning, Dae-young wakes up to find a bunch of people from the dinner party the night before knocked out at his place. Some of them wake up to attend class while Jin-seok and Byung-sam stay behind at his apartment. They’re going to skip class so Dae-young should go and attend lecture for them. Asdkjd. When Dae-young arrives home that night, the guys are still at his apartment. They’re soon joined by lady’s men Sung-joo who brings them some food to eat along with the leftover soju from the night before. One night clearly wasn’t enough, eh?
The mood is quickly ruined by a drunk man who pukes and urinates right outside Dae-young’s apartment.
Fast forward a few months and the four have transformed into best friends. I call them the F4 of the Department of Engineering. Asdfkjd. Hanging out at Dae-young’s place has also become a norm by now. After admiring a live performance of ‘Passion’ by Se7en and a commercial of Kim Tae-hee, the F4 team end the rainy night with some soju.
All that rain leaks into the apartment unit and F4 panics when they find themselves sleeping in a puddle of water and trash the next morning. They all climb onto Dae-young’s bed in shock and fear. However, they’re not the only ones on his bed. A soccer ball signed by soccer player Park Ji-sung is also safely hidden in Dae-young’s arms. Everything else can drown, just not his precious soccer ball. Hahaha. Dae-young please!
Team F4 move into another apartment unit since Dae-young’s old one is now flooded and worn-out. The weather is extremely hot that day and it gets the worst of the guys. Other than fighting over and breaking a fan, Dae-young’s precious soccer ball almost explodes, but he manages to save it just in time.
It’s another day of school. F4’s common hang-out spot is the coffee machine by the music department. The coffee there is good and there’s also many girls that walks around there. It’s unfortunate that Byung-sam gets easily intimidated by them. Dae-young then shares with his friends details about his new place. He’s moving into a new apartment, but his friends worry for him. There’s rumors that the apartment complex is haunted after one of the residents living there complained about seeing a ghost. Dae-young remains in disbelief though. There’s no such thing.
Dae-young meets with the landlords of the apartment complex. They’re an older Grandma and Grandpa couple who wears outfits as if they’re going to a sauna. The Grandpa also allegedly has bad hearing. After promising to repair Dae-young’s unit with new wallpaper before his move-in, they introduce him to Ji-woo who also lives at the same apartment complex. Dae-young will be living at the unit right next to hers. He extends his hand out to her for a handshake after exchanging introductions.
When Dae-young moves in to his new apartment unit, the landlady demands for Dae-young’s boxes once he’s done unpacking his stuff. He finds it a little suspicious, but also doesn’t mind it too much. Once he arrives at his unit, he finds Landlord Grandpa painting his walls. Dae-young volunteers to finish the rest of it since Landlord Grandpa seems exhausted.
Dae-young enjoys his first night at his new apartment by watching some TV. He overhears some laughter coming from Ji-woo’s apartment who he assumes must be her. As Dae-young leaves his place to go buy some ramen, he encounters Ji-woo along the way and asks her if she was the one laughing earlier at her apartment. But she claims that she wasn’t in her apartment at all. Plus, she also lives alone.
Things start to get a little more suspicious when Dae-young overhears some crying from Ji-woo’s apartment later on that night. He loses his appetite and rushes into bed. The scariest part of the night happens yet as Dae-young wakes up to someone trying to break into his place. The doorknob rattles and the door shakes and there must be someone trying to get in. Dae-young wakes up in shock and fear and cries out for his mom while doing the sign of the cross (ASKDFJD he’s not even doing it correctly hahaha).
Dae-young discusses about it with his friends the next night. There must be ghosts at the apartment complex like the rumors stated. Plus, the shaman living next to him has also confirmed it and is even willing to write Dae-young a talisman if he needs one.
Dae-young returns home a little drunk that night after drinking out with his friends. He runs home in the rain after coming across a black cat and is reminded again of the rumors about the ghosts. He thinks he’s arrived safely when he gets to his apartment complex, but the electricity suddenly blacks out and it’s completely dark. Dae-young makes up his way up to the stairs and into the hallway when he sees a figure of a woman dressed in white standing at the other end of the hallway. Dae-young faints. (It was not a good idea to watch this at 2am. Adskfjd).
Dae-young wakes up to find himself in Ji-woo’s apartment. How did he get there?! He’s greeted by Ji-woo as well as Ji-woo’s younger sister Seo-yeon (Lee Joo-woo) who’s secretly living with Ji-woo. She got kicked out of her dorm so she’s staying with Ji-woo for the time and no one else in the apartment complex knows but Dae-young.
They then explain to him about all the noise he heard the night before. All the laughing was from Seo-yeon who was also watching the same comedy show as Dae-young was. So then what about the crying? It turns out Ji-woo had gotten mad at Seo-yeon for making too much noise especially since Dae-young heard her laughing. Ji-woo threatens to tell their dad about Seo-yoon’s situation so Seo-yeon starts to cry. She’s a really good actress, because all her tears are basically nonexistent when they clearly don’t work on Ji-woo. Fed up, Seo-yoon walks out of Ji-woo’s place and tries to barge in to Dae-young’s unit. There’s plenty of other units near Ji-woo. That could explain for why his door was rattling and shaking the night before!
Everything slowly starts to make sense for Dae-young. Those rumors are ghosts are unfounded. Phew. That’s good. We also learn that Ji-woo and Seo-yoon are stepsisters since Ji-woo’s mother and Seo-yoon’s father remarried each other.
The next morning at school, Dae-young’s friends beg him to throw a housewarming party so they can meet Ji-woo and Seo-yoon. Dae-young isn’t too comfortable with the idea. While they walk away from their hang-out spot at the coffee machine, Dae-young returns to grab his bag that he had forgotten about. There, he meets the mastermind behind the amazing and tasty coffee that he’s absolutely in love with. It’s none other than Ji-woo!
While watching her restock the coffee machine, he begs her for an answer on how to make the best coffee with the coffee machine. Although Ji-woo is willing to give him her secret, she won’t do it for free. So Dae-young treats Ji-woo out for a meal in exchange for the answer.
The two eat to their hearts content at the restaurant. Dae-young learns some tricks and tips from Ji-woo on how to eat their dish and he’s easily fascinated by her. It seems like his transformation into becoming the food guru and expert he is in the present was definitely inspired and paved by Ji-woo.
The two neighbors finish eating and head home together until Dae-young’s friends stops to pick them up along the way. Jin-seok has a new car so he volunteers to take them home. The two get inside Jin-seok’s new car and Ji-woo exchanges greetings with the rest of the F4 members. Of course, Byung-sam’s in panic mode upon sitting next to Ji-woo in the small cramped car. He barely looks her in the eyes and avoids her by staring out the window. Hahaha, he’s too funny!
Jin-seok parks his car in front of the apartment complex since his parents doesn’t exactly know that he has a new car and he’s afraid as to how they will react when they do find out. After parking the car, they all head towards the complex until Landlord Grandma and Grandpa arrives. They demand that Jin-seok remove his car since the spot he’s parking his car is usually where they leave their cart. Jin-seok doesn’t hesitate to start his car to drive it somewhere else, but his car won’t start.
All of F4 at first try to lift the car and carry it elsewhere, but it’s too heavy. Ji-woo and Seo-yoon watch the guys struggle, but they too join the four in lifting the car. Little by little, they manage to get the car off the ground.
In the present, all the college memories makes Dae-young nostalgic as he continues to drive back home after some drinks with Ji-woo. However, all the smiles and happiness disappears when he arrives back at his place. The apartment unit is dark and gloomy… just like his life right now.
After finishing work, Ji-woo prepares to head back home. Her co-worker greets her and asks about Dae-young’s business card that Ji-woo had dropped onto the ground in the changing room. Could he possibly be a man that Ji-woo met on a blind date? But Ji-woo shares that Dae-young is her first love and she finally met him again after many years. Dae-young then calls Ji-woo at that moment to ask her about Seo-yoon since he had forgotten to ask her about Seo-yoon the night before. Ji-woo gets angry and clearly establishes that she and Seo-yoon no longer keep in contact. They’re no longer sisters as well and she hangs up on Dae-young angrily.
Ji-woo drinks away her frustration and irritation. She also heads to bed to get some rest after a night shift, but is soon awakened by Beanie’s barks. As she walks out onto her rooftop to calm Beanie down, she sees just who exactly Beanie was barking at.
It’s none other than Dae-young. He stands across from her and reveals that he’s moved in to the apartment complex next to hers. He extends his hand out for another handshake, just like he did 14 years ago when they first met as neighbors as well.
My first thought when I saw him extend his hand for another handshake in the present was: how are you gonna extend your hand for a handshake when she can’t even reach your hand Dae-young you fool?! But then I remembered that Dae-young also did the same thing when they met back in college and that the handshake actually represents different milestones in their relationship. They shook hands back in 2004 when they first met as neighbors and fast forward 14 years later and they’re neighbors again, but now a decade older and at two very different phases in their lives. The handshake is so important because it represents not only the start of new beginnings and chapters in their individual lives respectively, but also confirms and reaffirms the first impressions that Dae-young and Ji-woo had of each other the first time they met: before they were college friends or first loves, they were neighbors.
I’m glad that even after having skipped an entire season, our Dae-young is still essentially the same person he’s always been. He obviously has gone through many challenges and struggles in life and still does in the present. However, he also still does his food rants because he takes food very seriously and still knows the best and most popular restaurants for all kinds of foods. That was one of the most charming and funny aspects of him that I loved and enjoyed in the first season and I’m glad that he hasn’t changed much. Granted, Dae-young is the only reoccurring character out of all three seasons so it’s not like the drama was going to change his character all of a sudden. Still, it’s nice that even with all the changes that comes with each season, there’s one thing that stays the same and that’s Dae-young.
I have my concerns on Dae-young’s new love interests every season because it’s so interesting to see how his relationships in the prior season ended. It’s also so fascinating to watch him move and the people he meets with every move and the new types of challenges he faces when he moves. When Dae-young moves from one place to another, it’s not just simply a move. Each move represents a different phase in his life that he’s going through and with each phase comes new people, new memories, and new experiences. I’m curious to see what kind of memories he’s going to make now that he’s reunited with his college friend (and potential first love?) and has moved in as her neighbor. Maybe they’ll rekindle their love that died down back in college and they’ll take the time to get to know each other again after having lost all connection the past 14 years. What could go wrong right? And more importantly, what could go right?
I honestly ABSOLUTELY enjoyed the 2004 throwback to when our characters were in college. I don’t know if it’s the influence and impact of the Reply series and Go Back Couple that I’m starting to really love these throwbacks, but they’re so fun, effective, and heart-warming. I definitely paid more attention to F4 or to when Seo-yoon and Ji-woo still considered each other as sisters than when our characters were in the present. It was so fun just watching our four clumsy and quirky guys hang out or watch Ji-woo and Seo-yoon’s love-hate relationship with each other.
I definitely do get Go Back Couple and Reply vibes from the throwback which I’m not complaining about though because I love the college flashbacks. If they’re done effectively and does its job of telling the stories it needs to tell, then they’re fun to watch and ‘Let’s Eat 3’ is doing a successful job so far in establishing our characters with the college throwbacks. I also love how we got to witness Ji-woo’s influence in inspiring Dae-young to become the food expert he is in the present. He maintains his own food blog and has a lot of knowledge about food so it was great getting to see who exactly helped him get there. Small details like this that provides the backstory and context for the way our characters are in the present definitely helps and I’m really appreciating the college flashbacks. I love it so much I actually hope it never disappears throughout the entire run. Hopefully the drama will learn to balance the past and the present and be able to effectively use the past as a foundation for the present like it’s done in this episode.
After watching this episode, I was pleasantly surprised with the cast. It’s not that Yoon Doo-joon is green while portraying Dae-young, but I can kind of sense that he’s holding himself back a little bit than he usually would (or at least than he did in the first season) and I think that has to do more with external factors than say his acting skills. Doo-joon has proven to be a solid actor through the ‘Let’s Eat’ series as well as other dramas he’s done so it hurts when I see him holding back from his potential. I dearly love him because just like Ji-woo, he’s my first love (in the K-Pop realm) and I have a soft spot for him. In all honesty, he’s the main reason as to why I decided to recap this drama in the first place since I wasn’t considering it at first.
As for Baek Jin-hee, I watched her in ‘Jugglers’ which she was very cute and charming in. That was really my only exposure of her so I don’t really have any specific opinions about her other than that she’s cute and likable.
Out of our four leads, I’m definitely anticipating our second leads a lot more. I remember Lee Joo-woo primarily for her role in ‘Welcome to Waikiki’ because she played such a quirky, funny, and sassy character in there and she was truly so memorable. She’s playing a similar role in here which I love and which she’s actually very good at. I do worry though that she will be typecasted into playing these kind of characters so that could be a possible issue she runs into in the future.
As for Ahn Woo-yeon, my primary exposure to him was as the brother in Strong Woman Do Bong-soon which is funny because I never finished that drama. He did stand out in that drama to me though so that’s why I still remember who he is (I also just recalled that he was in the second season of ‘Age of Youth’!). I’m definitely looking forward to seeing him interact with Soo-yeon and witnessing how he will handle Soo-yeon’s manipulative and cheeky behavior. It’ll be fun and it’ll be even more fun when they slowly fall in love with each other. Ahhh.
I’m not sure how season three will fare in comparison to the two seasons prior, but I have high hopes that it will do just as well and maybe even better. The college throwbacks are a huge plus and helps a lot by establishing a foundation and paving the pathway for the present. Our cast – from our usual Dae-young to adorable Ji-woo to Dae-young’s three college friends to Seo-yoon and everyone else in between – has impressed even with just this first episode. I’m also liking that they’re doing something a little different this time by mentioning about drinking and alcohol and not just focusing entirely on food. Hopefully the third season of the ‘Let’s Eat’ franchise will get better and bigger from here on out.