Love is complicated, love is hurtful, love is honest. Sol-Ah learns these lessons firsthand as she tries to gain a better understanding of the relationships in her life, including the confusing ones that left and then came back.
Meow, the Secret Boy: Episode 3 Recap
Sol-Ah and Jae-sun get close and comfy in Sol-Ah’s house. However, the two find themselves quickly interrupted by human Hong-jo who’s standing across them in all white. Though Sol-Ah and Jae-sun are at first confused as to who Hong-jo is, a phone call from Bang-shil at that moment clarifies the confusion and it’s assumed that the stranger standing in the house is Bang-shil’s son. Sol-Ah doesn’t question Bang-shil and neither does Hong-jo. He goes along with it.
Comets are like cats. They have tails, and they do precisely what they want.David Levy
Jae-sun leaves the two housemates alone to themselves. Sol-Ah and Hong-jo converse for a little bit until Sol-Ah is suddenly reminded of cat Hong-jo. She rushes to the entrance door to go out and find cat Hong-jo only to find it in the living room the moment she turned her back to human Hong-jo. LOL, smooth Hong-jo, smooth.
Sol-Ah talks things over with best friend Doo-sik. Guk-bong – who Sol-Ah is referring to human Hong-jo as – seems a little weird. She doesn’t have good vibes about him. To ease her concern and worries, Doo-sik and Jae-sun volunteers to come over that night to interact with this Guk-bong guy to see what he’s like. Sol-Ah prepares for the visit by cleaning up the house and assigning Hong-jo to assist her with duties. When that doesn’t seem to go too well, Sol-Ah has no choice but to let Hong-jo go with her to the grocery store. Even that is troublesome in itself as Hong-jo has no money to pay for things and well.. gets excited over fish – alive or not. LOL.
Jae-sun and Doo-sik arrive at Sol-Ah’s house. After having a few drinks, drunk Doo-sik decides to give himself a tour of the house. He marches into a random room and finds human Hong-jo in the room that he barged into (poor Hong-jo! Such bad luck!). It takes a second for Doo-sik to process what just happened, but before he can mention another word to Hong-jo, human Hong-jo is no longer in the room. There’s only cat Hong-jo in the room now.
Back in the living room, Jae-sun and Sol-Ah have a talk about their relationship. It seems like things are finally starting to return to normal after what seemed like an eternity. Jae-sun kept running away and disappearing on Sol-Ah so she’s thankful that he’s finally back. She even ponders over the possibility of them continuing where they left on before Jae-sun disappeared, but Jae-sun avoids the topic. He doesn’t necessarily feel a way about her or their relationship; to him, Sol-Ah is just Sol-Ah and there’s only one of Kim Sol-Ah to Jae-sun. Hidden not too far away is human Hong-jo eavesdropping in on their conversation.
The night deepens and Jae-sun and Doo-sik eventually leave. While cleaning up, Sol-Ah gushes over Jae-sun’s comment and assumes that she must be the only one meant for Jae-sun. Surely, that’s what he meant right? However, Hong-jo has a different interpretation of Jae-sun’s words and assumes Jae-sun meant that Sol-Ah is just Sol-Ah to him. There’s nothing more to it. The two wish each other goodnight before heading to sleep.
Sol-Ah prepares to upload her webtoon ‘Helpless Bodeul Love’ online. Nervous and afraid, she puts on her lucky friendship ring that Doo-Sik and Jae-sun also owns on her finger in hopes that her webtoon will be successful. Since the webtoon is influenced by her relationship with Jae-sun, she hopes that Jae-sun himself won’t read the webtoon. Human Hong-jo watches Sol-Ah nervously pant while sitting behind her.
Jae-sun hasn’t read the webtoon so far, but Doo-Sik and all of Sol-Ah’s co-workers has. Everyone in the office tunes into her webtoon and Sol-Ah becomes afraid that CEO Park might also catch on. Ji-eun is pulled aside to have a chat with CEO Park which only causes Sol-Ah’s nervousness and anxiety to worsen. What if Ji-eun reveals to CEO Park about Sol-Ah’s webtoon? What if CEO Park finds out and grows upset that Sol-Ah was focusing on the webtoon instead of work? However, to Sol-Ah and Doo-sik’s relief, Ji-Eun didn’t say anything about the webtoon to CEO Park at all. They misunderstood.
Doo-Sik’s a great and supportive friend, but he can also be a bit too much sometimes. It turns out the co-workers in the office aren’t the only ones he informed about the webtoon; he also sent the link to Jae-sun. Sol-Ah visits Jae-sun that evening at his cafe to gather some answers, but before he can even mention anything about the webtoon to her, he notices cat Hong-jo resting in his cafe. Upset, he reminds Sol-Ah to not leave her windows opened for it can be dangerous for cat Hong-jo. Sol-Ah grows sad and discouraged from the interaction with Jae-sun. Similar to how the male lead in her webtoon shut a door on the female lead, Sol-Ah can’t seem to figure out why Jae-sun closed his heart on her. Meanwhile, human Hong-jo can’t seem to comprehend and understand the webtoon in general. LOL.
With the help of a little boy named Dae-sung, Hong-jo slowly learns how to adjust to human life. Dae-sung teaches Hong-jo the letters of the alphabet as well as basic manners (I LOVE IT LOL) and even feeds human Hong-jo. Doo-sik’s parents catches Dae-sung eating with Hong-jo at their restaurant and assumes Hong-jo must be taking care of Dae-sung. They praise him for being such a good role model. LOL. It’s the other way around!
Sol-Ah grows curious as to who exactly the 17 readers of her webtoon are. LOL. After counting everyone out, there’s only three people left that read her webtoon. Jae-sun can’t be one of them, right? That night, she returns to a dark house and accidentally hits her head on the way in. It’s unfortunate there’s no one at the house who can help take care of Sol-Ah. Not even cat Hong-jo shows any concern. Sol-Ah shifts her focus to her webtoon, but she can’t seem to focus. It doesn’t help that human Hong-jo keeps distracting her.
After managing to get Hong-jo to go away, Sol-Ah is interrupted once again by someone else. It’s Doo-sik this time and he’s invited some of their co-workers plus Ji-eun to Jae-sun’s cafe so she should head on over too. Eventually, everyone gathers at Jae-sun’s cafe and chats about Sol-Ah, Doo-sik, and Jae-sun’s art club. As they will eventually find out, quiet and shy Ji-eun was also in the same art club as them! And yes, it was her who won the Grand Prize (Daesang) in their art club. Ji-eun joins the rest of the group at the table and they chat about their art club. Just like Doo-sik, Sol-Ah, and Jae-sun, she too has the same exact ring as them and she too knew about Sol-Ah’s webtoon since it was a project that Sol-Ah worked on dating back to their art club days. Doo-sik is fascinated as to how Jae-sun remembered that Ji-eun was in their art club when she was so quiet and shy; Sol-Ah loves how observant Jae-sun is about everything and how much attention he pays to details.
After chatting about their art club, the group brings up Sol-Ah’s webtoon next. Is she going to upload the next chapter? Why doesn’t the male lead open up the door to the female lead? Sol-Ah grows nervous and waits for some kind of reaction or response from Jae-sun. When Jae-sun finally does speak up about her webtoon, it’s not what she expected or wanted to hear. He criticizes her webtoon for being cliche; it’s a typical fantasy story about a woman getting rescued by a man. Even viewers of the webtoon feel the same way. Sol-Ah rushes home in embarrassment and sadness.
Only Hong-jo truly understands Sol-Ah’s webtoon. Unlike what others think, Hong-jo has a different understanding of her story.. and an accurate one at that too. Sol-Ah rejoices that someone finally understands her story over some drinks with Hong-jo that night. The two also get into a deep and honest conversation about her relationship with Jae-sun. It’s obvious that Sol-Ah likes Jae-sun a lot more than he likes her; even when he stood her up and then returned to her later, she came back to him. She forgave him. Hong-jo makes it obvious to Sol-Ah just how much of a fool she is for Jae-sun while he clearly does not like her as much as she likes him.
This gets Sol-Ah thinking and she confronts Jae-sun as he closes his cafe. Why does he keep tugging her along? Why does he keep playing push and pull with her? Why can’t he just be honest with her? If he wants to stay as friends, he should just tell her. She’s had enough of his childish games. Jae-sun defends himself by asking about her red scarf. Does she still have it? Where did it go? Sol-Ah can’t seem to quite comprehend what Jae-sun is trying to get at and he doesn’t want to try asking any longer so they end their conversation abruptly. Sol-Ah concludes the conversation by claiming that she won’t be a puppy and follow him around anymore or wait for him anymore.
Flash back to the night they were supposed to meet up for a date, Jae-sun had his own reasons for ignoring Sol-Ah’s phone call that night. While walking to the playground she was waiting for him at, he found kitten Hong-jo wrapped up in a red scarf that belonged to Sol-Ah. He was abandoned and left alone on the cold sidewalk. This angered Jae-sun and he never showed up to meet with Sol-Ah. This could explain the reason for his abrupt disappearance on her. Of course, Sol-Ah is heart-broken and sad over her recent conversation with Jae-sun and cries back at her house. Luckily, human Hong-jo is there to console and comfort Sol-Ah. As a cat, there are things that he cannot do like hug someone who’s in pain, but as a human being, all things are possible. He places his arm around Sol-Ah for a small hug while she cries in his arms. Meanwhile, Jae-sun reads a note that was originally found in the small basket that he was discovered in the moment he was abandoned as an infant.
This episode was another cute and simple episode, but I wished it would have came at a much later time. This episode appeared just a few episodes too early so the impact it conveyed wasn’t quite there for me.
This episode focused primarily on Jae-sun and Sol-Ah’s complicated relationship and gave us some context and backstory on why they’re in such a push-n-pull type of relationship. I don’t mind that the drama chose to focus on that this episode, but what I do wish it would have done was given us that context within the first two episodes. We find that Sol-Ah and Jae-sun sort of have a thing, but they sort of don’t so if the drama had just showed us this in the first two episodes, I would have felt more for them in this episode. Why should we viewers care about Jae-sun and Sol-Ah? What about their relationship is complicated? How did they end up in the awkward positions that they are in right now? I want to care about the two together, but I can’t because we weren’t given enough details and backstory about them so it got confusing for me. Add that to Hong-jo’s storyline which is a lot cuter, interesting, and fascinating and I was more invested in watching Hong-jo bond with Sol-Ah than Sol-Ah gushing over Jae-sun.
If the drama had decided to first give us more information on Jae-sun and Sol-Ah and then transition to this confrontation between them, I would have wholeheartedly enjoyed this episode. However, the drama worked its way backward so things were a little disappointing. The timing and pacing of the drama is off by a few episodes, but the drama has definitely hinted at us just how much potential it has to be better. We saw that in this episode how much more human Hong-jo and Sol-Ah bonded with each other. It was funny, it was adorable, and it was touching to an extent. But again, it came a tad bit too early. And it also came at an odd timing.
Let’s say the drama did all the things I wanted it to do and we move past all of those thoughts. I loved and enjoyed how human Hong-jo understood Sol-Ah in this episode and understood her not once but twice about different topics: the first being about her webtoon and then the second about her relationship with Jae-sun. Though it could be a little confusing as to how knowledgeable and wise he got, I’m assuming that these conclusions came as a result of all his eavesdropping and observations of Sol-Ah. Similar to what Doo-sik mentioned in this episode, Sol-Ah has always been the one to take care of other people so it must have been nice for her to finally have someone who could understand her and where she’s coming from. I think it’s this special connection with Hong-jo that will eventually cause her to open up to him.
I love even more how proactive Sol-Ah was with the advice that Hong-jo gave her. I think it was one thing to finally have someone who understood her and listened to her for once, but to also take that advice and apply it to her life as quickly as she did was another memorable thing. Once Hong-jo was honest with her about her status with Jae-sun, Sol-Ah confronted Jae-sun the very same night. Yes, that confrontation broke her heart and caused her to face a reality she was not prepared for and had been avoiding this entire time, but it ultimately was the best decision for her. Hong-jo only told Sol-Ah the honest truth that she might had been feigning ignorance about this entire time and was in denial about. To hear from Hong-jo what she might had been really feeling and thinking inside was the breaking point for her and confirmed any doubts and concerns that Sol-Ah had all along: what does she mean to Jae-sun?
I adore Hong-jo’s friendship with Doo-sik and I appreciate just how close and supportive they are of each other. However, I’m not the biggest fan of how Doo-sik treats Ji-eun. I know the drama is only setting this up now so that when Doo-sik eventually falls in love with Ji-eun later in the drama, it’ll be the most adorable thing in the world. But I doubt I’ll be feeling that way especially with how irritating Doo-sik’s treatment towards Ji-eun is. He accuses her of using her connections to get a job, is demeaning towards her, and critiques her for being unable to verbally communicate with him. I’m assuming Ji-eun has feelings for Doo-sik, but is still too shy to express herself or be able to talk to him. She probably suffers from social anxiety and is super nervous around people. I hope Doo-sik’s change in behavior towards Ji-eun will happen sooner than later for him to remain on my neutral side.
If there’s something from this episode that I’m glad the episode focused on, it’d be the drama hinting to us some kind of backstory about Jae-sun. The ending scene served as some sort of a preview as to why abandonment is such a thing for Jae-sun and why it hits so close to home for him. He was abandoned himself so it hurts to see people or animals that he care about be abandoned themselves. He knows too well how that feels like so he wouldn’t want anyone or anything else to feel the same way. Since we were given that small detail in this episode, I could see why he chose to disappear in Sol-Ah’s life originally. I think his decision to return was less of him purposely wanting to string Sol-Ah along, but more so because he eventually forgave her and wanted to give them another chance to make things right this time.
Extra screenshots from the episode~