With only one more episode to go, the drama wraps things up for our characters. Seok-moo and Hwi-roo have to once again confront the truth about the divorce to their parents while Yoo-young struggles to confront her reality with Jang-hyun now back in it.
Matrimonial Chaos: Episode 15 Recap
Hwi-roo listens to Seok-moo play his self-composed song on the guitar. She tears up while listening to the lyrics and then exits the guesthouse quietly afterwards. However, she’s not so quiet as she stumbles and falls down the stairs outside of the house. Seok-moo rushes outside to check up on the noise and discovers Hwi-roo on the ground by the end of the stairs. He brings her into the house and treats her injuries. Hwi-roo notices the guitar back in his bedroom and adds that she was already aware of Seok-moo’s dreams of becoming a musician. It also makes sense as to why Shi-ho’s song sounded so nice. His song originally belonged to Seok-moo all along.
Unlike what Seok-moo thought, Hwi-roo and Shi-ho were never in a relationship with each other. Relationships aren’t easy to start. Though Seok-moo and Hwi-roo might be divorced, they still both believe that the other is a kind and good person. While Seok-moo makes Hwi-roo some tea, Hwi-roo notices the line of books on the shelf. Seok-moo comments that he’s changing his behavior; small little things he didn’t like about Hwi-roo before he is now imitating.
As Seok-moo walks Hwi-roo back to her rooftop house, he volunteers to fix the broken cupboard for her in exchange for dinner. Hwi-roo agrees. Aww. The next morning, Jang-hyun shares with Yoo-young different name suggestions he has for the baby. The first one he’s thought of is the nickname ‘map’ since Yoo-young first fell for Jang-hyun as he was drawing a map, lol. He then receives a text from his colleague Seo Eun-soo who he claims is a professor he’s working on a project with.
Yoo-young and Hwi-roo run into each other at the laundromat. Hwi-roo doesn’t have any nice clothes to wear for her dinner date with Seok-moo that night since she’ll be washing all her clothes. Yoo-young offers some of the outfits at her shop for Hwi-roo to wear. As Hwi-roo tries on some dresses, Yoo-young receives constant updates from Jang-hyun about his meeting with Professor Seo Eun-soo so she won’t suspect anything.
Hwi-roo and Seok-moo have their dinner date at the buffet. As they pick out food onto their plates, a little boy accidentally bumps into Hwi-roo and causes her to fall down. However, instead of apologizing to Hwi-roo, the little boy simply decides to just walk away. Of course, Seok-moo doesn’t let this fly and he scolds the little boy for not helping Hwi-roo. The little boy’s parents join their son a few seconds later and grows angry at Seok-moo for criticizing both them and their son.
Seok-moo fixes the broken cupboard at the rooftop house later on after dinner. Seok-moo continues to ramble about the buffet incident, but Hwi-roo encourages him to just move on. There’s no point in talking about something that’s already passed. Seok-moo brings up how Hwi-roo used to also be involved in other people’s business and affairs in the past, but Hwi-roo warns him not to talk about her as if he knows her. She reminds him that they’re strangers.
They then move on to talking about one of their encounters at the rooftop house many years ago. On that morning, Seok-moo just happened to stop by Hwi-roo’s house as she was suffering from severe anxiety. Thankfully, he was there to comfort her and lend her his support. The two formed an adorable bond with each other over night and the rest was history. It might not have meant much to Hwi-roo, but the memory has a totally different meaning for Seok-moo now. He always imagined Hwi-roo would be by his side when they were married so he took her for granted and forgot how much he liked her. That’s why their marriage went downhill.
Seok-moo apologizes for ruining their marriage and now realizes how precious Hwi-roo is to him. Back at Yoo-young’s house, Jang-hyun returns after a team dinner with his faculty as well as after working on the baby crib. He once again proves his innocence to Yoo-young, but she addresses the issue with Jang-hyun. She encourages Jang-hyun to relax for now. It’s not that she doesn’t trust him, it’s just rather that she doesn’t want to. Yoo-young needs some time to trust and love Jang-hyun again. All he can do for now is just wait for her.
Jang-hyun expresses his anger in a talk with Seok-moo at Grandma’s cafe. He was told to wait by Yoo-young while she figures out whether she loves him or not. Jang-hyun is impatient though and wants to prove himself to Yoo-young as fast as possible. Meanwhile, Seok-moo’s Dad wants to pay Hwi-roo’s parents another visit but with both Seok-moo and Hwi-roo this time. They ask Grandma to do the talking with Seok-moo since he never listens to Dad.
Mom and Dad will find it hard to be strangers with Hwi-roo’s parents since they’ve been like family to one another for years now. Grandma can especially relate to them; though she divorced from Grandpa, she’s still affiliated with the family to this day. She then brings up a memory from when she first married Grandpa and recalls how Dad reacted around that time. Dad tears up and apologizes to Grandma for the way he’s treated her all this time. He was just so angry for the way his biological mother had to suffer and live alone which is why he couldn’t accept Grandma as part of the family. Grandma is understanding of Dad though and isn’t angry at him.
Hwi-roo has an interview with a reporter about her book. When asked about her next book, Hwi-roo describes how she plans on writing a book about a circle and triangle. Though the reporter has a hard time understanding the plot of the book, it’s clear Hwi-roo is going to write another book about her life. Back at Grandma’s house, Grandma encourages Seok-moo to take his singing outside of the house. He should perform in public and let the world hear his music.
So that night, Seok-moo takes a stroll out in the neighborhood and sits on a bench to perform his song. He eventually attracts one passerby who hands him some money in exchange for the short performance. Lol. The next morning, Seok-moo and Hwi-roo are called to Grandma’s cafe for a meeting with Seok-moo’s parents. They are to visit Hwi-roo’s parents and explain to them about the divorce as well as to bid farewell. Though Hwi-roo and Seok-moo are reluctant, Grandma wraps up the conversation by pushing them both to go through with the meeting.
So Seok-moo’s parents and our divorced couple make their way to Hwi-roo’s parent’s house. Back at Yoo-young’s house, Jang-hyun returns home to find the apartment empty. Yoo-young is returning home after receiving a phone call from her sister that their mom is sick. Hwi-roo and Seok-moo eventually make it to Hwi-roo’s parent’s house.
The six all gather around the dinner table to have a discussion about the divorce. Both parents attempt to understand why Seok-moo and Hwi-roo got a divorce. It’s not like they can’t stand each other or hate each other so why did they separate? Hwi-roo claims it’s because of personality differences. Both parents can resonate with Hwi-roo and understand where she’s coming from. They end up nagging about their spouses in front of one another while Hwi-roo and Seok-moo sit and watch in confusion all the chaos ensue.
At that moment, Hwi-roo’s relatives enter the house upon hearing that she and Seok-moo are in town visiting. They greet Seok-moo’s parents upon seeing them. Yoo-young eventually reunites with her mother and takes care of her in the bedroom. Mom is just relieved to finally see Yoo-young again; she can also understand why Yoo-young never visited her often though. Mom made Yoo-young see things she should have never seen as a young child and caused her to suffer at a young age. Mom was just a lonely person and she was desperate to have someone by her side since Dad obviously wasn’t.
Yoo-young clarifies any misunderstandings Mom has about her and states that she was just worried that her mom would fall apart. The two eventually make up and agree to have some food with each other. However, they’re not the only ones there as Jang-hyun soon enters the house not too long afterwards. He took the day off from work to spend some time with Yoo-young and Mom.
Back at Hwi-roo’s house, the entire family convenes to karaoke and drink. While Seok-moo’s Dad and Seok-moo karaoke, Hwi-roo shares a drink with her Mom and Mother-in-law. Though Seok-moo’s Mom can afford to support her own daughter’s divorce, she can’t bring herself to say the same to Hwi-roo. Mom assumes Hwi-roo can just endure the marriage with Seok-moo for a little longer, but Hwi-roo doesn’t like the idea of enduring through something just for the heck of it. It can get hurtful for the other person in the relationship.
Hwi-roo’s Dad drunkenly rambles to Seok-moo near the bathroom about marriage, but falls asleep after drinking a little too much. Lol. Yoo-young and Mom have dinner with Jang-hyun. Mom wonders why Yoo-young called her the other day crying about the pregnancy and now she knows it must have been because of Jang-hyun. Jang-hyun quickly admits to his faults and adds that he cheated on Yoo-young. Though he vows to never cheat again, Mom grows angry and kicks Jang-hyun out of the house.
With just Yoo-young and Mom home alone, Mom encourages Yoo-young to do what she can only handle. Mom couldn’t divorced Dad back then because he refused to let her go. Yoo-young is different though and she is smart enough to make her own decisions. Seok-moo prepares to head back home since he has some things to take care regarding his former job. He bids farewell with both his parents and parents-in-law and eventually Hwi-roo herself.
That night, Yoo-young checks up on Jang-hyun outside the house and urges him to just go home. He shouldn’t be outside in the cold on his knees. However, Jang-hyun remains stubborn and determined to prove his worth to both Yoo-young and Mom. Yoo-young told him to wait so he’ll wait for her as long as he has to. As Seok-moo walks to the train station, he’s suddenly approached by Hwi-roo who runs after him with some food that her mom had packed for him.
However, she doesn’t want to bid farewell with Seok-moo just yet. She volunteers to walk him to the train station and follows behind him as they walk to the station. Seok-moo treads slowly in front of Hwi-roo as she follows behind him quietly.
Aww, that ending is probably my favorite ending yet in the drama (and maybe out of the entire drama since I’m not so sure how the last episode will be wrapping everything up). It was in the small and quiet way where Hwi-roo traced Seok-moo’s steps and followed behind him quietly that made that ending scene so meaningful. She still wanted to be with him so she offered to walk with him to the station. The drama continues to remain charming because it never fails to remind us of the small and subtle details that it referenced in the very beginning. Seok-moo has a habit of walking on a straight line like how they did at the ending of this episode. Whereas before where the drama showed us Hwi-roo and Seok-moo practicing this habit separately, this time they’re both imitating it together in a much more nuanced way.
This episode was so bittersweet with the way that it wrapped up Yoo-young’s storyline with her mother and then the divorce with both parents. Since this is the second to last episode, the drama is tying loose ends and hinting to us how it plans to conclude everyone’s stories. I’m ultimately just so relieved that the drama never forgot about the stories it told us about in the very beginning. I was afraid the drama was going to get too distracted and consumed with Hwi-roo and Seok-moo’s divorce that it wouldn’t focus on Yoo-young’s relationship with her mother or about Hwi-roo and Seok-moo’s parents. However, the drama has never forgotten about it at all and instead chose to focus on these storylines later in the drama as a way to wrap everything up for our characters.
Out of all the sub-plots in this drama, I’m actually the most satisfied with Yoo-young and Jang-hyun’s story which is shocking to me honestly. I didn’t go in to this drama as engaged and intrigued with their relationship, but I actually find myself now content with how things are progressing for the both of them. I like how Yoo-young eventually stood up for herself and rejected Jang-hyun back into her life at first. I like how it took her some time to think over her thoughts on him and whether or not she truly still wanted to be with him. I like how Yoo-young didn’t accept him so easily at first, but eventually took him back in under some conditions. I like how her meeting with her mom in this episode helped her think further about her relationship with Jang-hyun and how she truly feels about him. Yoo-young is still in the process of exploring her thoughts about Jang-hyun and I especially like that it’s not a simple process. It’s going to take time for Yoo-young to trust Jang-hyun again and to determine really whether she loves him or not. I understand that Jang-hyun wants to prove himself to Yoo-young and how he’s now a changed person, but he fails to understand that the process is going to take some time. His marriage and relationship with Yoo-young is not going to magically cure and happen overnight. The pain and hurt he caused her is going to take months and maybe even years to heal and he now has to suffer the consequences for his past actions. Yes, Jang-hyun might have changed and he should change if he wants to be with Yoo-young and the baby, but he also has to be considerate of her feelings now. In the past, he only thought about himself and what he wanted, but now he has to do the waiting and to be patient. Jang-hyun now has to learn to put himself in other people’s shoes.
This episode hurt in a way because watching Hwi-roo and Seok-moo explain to both their parents about their divorce was kind of an acknowledgement that they’re not getting back anytime soon. And I know that Hwi-roo and Seok-moo definitely can; they can definitely get back together sometime in the future when the time allows for it and when they’re mature and ready enough for that, but it seems like it won’t be happening anytime soon. They’re not in the best position to engage in another relationship again. It’s obvious why they’re not a match for each other at the moment and it’s clear the two have some issues of their own they need to work on and solve on their own, but it’s still so sad to see the two have to confront their parents about their divorce. I find myself reacting similarly to their parents and questioning if both Hwi-roo and Seok-moo have to be divorced. You guys like each other right? Please, can’t you guys just be with each other? LOL. But of course, marriage and relationships are never that easy and like Hwi-roo stated in this episode, relationships are never easy to start. Hwi-roo and Seok-moo have finalized their divorce so it’d be challenging to begin again. I think they’ve been actually trying to start their relationship again to an extent since their divorce. However, it just hasn’t been easy and the two still have a long way to go in understanding each other. Seok-moo and Hwi-roo can definitely start over and begin anew in the future if they want to, but maybe the timing isn’t just the best at the moment and that’s okay.
I wonder how the drama plans on concluding things for Hwi-roo and Seok-moo. I can see the drama leaving an open-ended conclusion for the divorced couple and leaving the possibility of another relationship once time passes and allows for it. That’d be the most realistic option since Hwi-roo and Seok-moo still has some work to do and are currently in the process of exploring their divorced relationship. I also see the drama doing a possible time-jump and having the two reunite years later after being separated only to get back together because they realize just how much they still love each other and want each other back. And thanks to the time jump, they have matured enough and are now prepared to be in a relationship again. Of course, this would be the happy ending that I would personally want, but it also wouldn’t possibly happen. Whatever the conclusion is, I’d be fine if Hwi-roo and Seok-moo don’t end up together automatically by the end of the show. All the hidden glances, gestures, lyrics, and stories between the two was enough to make me believe that Seok-moo and Hwi-roo will eventually get back together, if not now then later.
Bonus: Extra screenshots~