When you’re pushed to your limits, you can sometimes say things and do things that you didn’t mean at the moment or that you might regret later on. How much more pain and suffering will Song-Ah have to go through until she calls it quits? How much more can she take until she gives up and gives in?
Do You Like Brahms? Episode 14: A Tempo, in time, Return to Original Speed
Song-Ah rushes to the cafe where she expects to find Joon-young inside waiting for her. However, as she will quickly discover, he’s no where to be found as something else came up. Professor Yoo listens to the recording that was uploaded on Youtube with his name attached to it. He calls his colleague for some more information, but his colleague merely brushes it off. He was just trying to help Professor Yoo get his name out there so he uploaded the recording in hopes that it will gain some traction (in which it does). It doesn’t take long for Joon-young to confront Professor Yoo in his office about the recording. Professor Yoo doesn’t back down so easily. There’s no evidence that Professor Yoo recorded Joon-young’s piece nor is there any evidence that proves that it was Joon-young who was playing the piano piece.
When Joon-young returns home, he listens to the recording once again and is then visited by Jung-kyung who stops by his apartment. She was worried about him so she wanted to swing by and visit. Joon-young steps outside of his apartment to talk to her and pleads for her to not worry. The recording isn’t him and even if it was, he’ll take care of the situation himself. He re-enters his apartment afterwards and Jung-kyung encounters Song-Ah on the walk outside. Song-Ah requests for Jung-kyung never to show up at Joon-young’s place again which Jung-kyung doesn’t respond to. Instead, she comments how Song-Ah should be more concerned about Joon-young and then leaves afterwards.
Professor Yoo assesses the situation regarding the recording and how it got recorded in the first place. The piano in his office has a sensor that replicates the piano player’s touches down to the pedals and he often records his performances as he plays on the piano. On the particular day that Joon-young stopped by the office to practice, Professor Yoo accidentally left his tablet behind on the piano and it ended up recording Joon-young during his practice. Professor Yoo didn’t notice until the next day and he sent his colleague the recording which is how it ended up on Youtube. Professor Yoo stresses out after the realization and he’s devastated with the end results. On the way back home, Song-Ah is tempted to call Min-sung and reach out to her. She’s reminded of the moment when she cheered a heartbroken Min-sung up after her break-up with Dong-yoon. At that time, Min-sung promised to also do the same to Song-Ah during times of hardships, but Song-Ah can’t seem to bring herself to contact Min-sung.
When Song-Ah arrives home, her sister Song-hee, notices how down and dejected she seems. She enters Song-Ah’s bedroom with some beer later on that night and attempts to get her sister to talk to her. Although Song-Ah is reluctant at first to open up, she eventually shares her worries and concerns to her older sister. She’s not so sure if she wants to keep pursuing music. It seems as if things aren’t working out. Song-hee points out that she admires Song-Ah for pursing her dreams and goals in life despite the backlash and criticisms. Song-Ah can always quit if she wishes to and she should make decisions for herself that will make her happy. Nothing else matters. With that, Song-hee exits the bedroom and Song-Ah is left in her bedroom to reflect on her life. She feels a little bit better.
Hyun-ho and Jung-kyung meet to go over the controversy between Joon-young and Professor Yoo. Jung-kyung feels helpless about the situation, but there was a reason as to why she wanted to meet with Hyun-ho. She’s curious about Professor Yoo’s relationship with Joon-young. Did they ever get along? Were they ever on good terms? Hyun-ho mentions how stressed Joon-young once was because of Professor Yoo. He was someone who was mentally draining and exhausting to Joon-young so their relationship wasn’t all that great and peaceful. Even with these problems, nobody dared to tutor or teach Joon-young because everyone know that he was Professor Yoo’s student. Jung-kyung wishes that she can still do something for Joon-young with the new information she learned about his relationship with Professor Yoo. It’s the least she can do as his friend. Hyun-ho doesn’t react to the comment about being friends so nicely and he has a hard time accepting his reality with Jung-kyung. It’s difficult for him to see Jung-kyung as a friend given that they were in a relationship for a decade. He’s not so sure what to do with Joon-young and the same goes to Jung-kyung. With that, Hyun-ho leaves the cafe.
Joon-young goes to Team Leader Cha for some guidance on what to do with the recording. Team Leader Cha suggests that they can report the video as copyright infringement, but there’s no way yet to prove that the person in the recording is Joon-young. Regardless, they can even take legal action against Professor Yoo, but Joon-young refuses. He doesn’t want Professor Yoo to be contacted in regards to any of this. All Joon-young wants is for the video to be taken down and removed for Song-Ah’s sake. He doesn’t want Song-Ah to be concerned about the situation. Joon-young presents the same concerns and demands to Sung-jae in a meeting with him. Sung-jae assumes they can take full advantage of the situation and seize the opportunity to propel Joon-young’s career, but that’s not what Joon-young wants. Again, he just wants the video to be taken down, but Sung-jae is still adamant on his wants as well. He’ll take down the video, but asks for Joon-young to reconsider participating in the reality TV show.
Song-Ah receives a phone call in the practice room on campus from someone who’s interested in playing as Song-Ah’s piano accompanist for her graduate school entrance exam. Upon receiving the phone call, Song-Ah makes plans with Joon-young to meet later that day. Hyun-ho is tempted to text Joon-young and check up on how he’s feeling with the whole recording situation, but he struggles to send him the text. Ji-won practices the violin with Professor Song, but nothing she does impresses the professor. In fact, Professor Song unleashes her frustration and anger out on Ji-won and nags at Ji-won’s mom to upgrade Ji-won’s violin. She even drags Jung-kyung’s name into the conversation and assumes Ji-won’s mom can make it happen since she has connections to Jung-kyung.
Director Na and Jung-kyung’s dad have a conversation about Jung-kyung. Director Na updates Dad about everything that Jung-kyung has been dealing with lately and reveals how it wasn’t her or Dad who comforted Jung-kyung throughout the years. It was Joon-young playing the piano that brought Jung-kyung that comfort that she needed. And as we will see, Jung-kyung revisits the CD’s that Joon-young sent to her every year for her birthday with his recordings on each CD. Sung-jae can’t quite seem to get a hold of the person behind the Youtube channel with the recording so he updates Joon-young on the concern. Joon-young ends up meeting with Song-Ah later on that night and she confronts him (once again) about what she saw the night before.
She mentions how she saw Jung-kyung leaving Joon-young’s place so Joon-young reveals how Jung-kyung came over to his place without his prior knowledge. It seems as if Jung-kyung hasn’t quite sorted herself out so he apologizes to Song-Ah. But Song-Ah isn’t buying any of it. Why does he keep saying worry? Why does he keep making excuses for Jung-kyung? He said he wouldn’t see her again and yet he did. Why does he keep making Song-Ah anxious? Joon-young claims that Jung-kyung hasn’t sorted things out in her life, but isn’t it Joon-young the one who needs to figure out things in his life? (OOOOOOOOH SONG-AH WENT THERE!! Go Song-Ah!!). Joon-young is in disbelief upon hearing Song-Ah’s hurtful words and the two are interrupted by another student who’s booked the practice room. Song-Ah storms out of the room, but she’s quickly trailed by Joon-young. The pianist acknowledges his faults and his mistakes and pleads for Song-Ah to not walk out on him like that, but she does anyways. She walks off again without saying a word to him (Oof, that must have hurt for Joon-young, but I can’t blame Song-Ah).
Hyun-ho and Dong-yoon hang out at Dong-yoon’s workshop for some drinks. Hyun-ho thought things would be easier upon returning to Korea with Jung-kyung, but things have only gotten harder. His break-up with Jung-kyung has been hard to handle and no matter where he goes, he keeps on hearing rumors and information about her. While walking back to his parent’s convenience store, Hyun-ho receives news that he’s been accepted into the cello section of a symphony orchestra in New York. He delivers the news to his mom when he arrives at the store and comforts his crying mom. Song-Ah cries about her relationship with Joon-young that night at home and Joon-young won’t give up on her. He repeatedly calls her in an effort to talk to her and work things out, but Song-Ah needs some time to herself. She turns her phone off that night and leans on her closed violin case to cry her heart out. That same night, Hyun-ho deletes Jung-kyung’s phone number off his phone and he anxiously ponders if it was the right decision. Joon-young continues to contact Song-Ah in hopes of hearing back from her, but he doesn’t receive any update from her. She keeps her phone off even until the next day.
Professor Lee encounters Hae-na on campus so she inquires Hae-na to be her next assistant. Song-Ah’s quit so Hae-na can take up on the position if she would like to. Hae-na is surprised by the news and gives things a thought. Sung-jae manages to get in contact with the person behind the Youtube channel and updates Joon-young on the news. The video recording will be taken down by the end of that day. Song-Ah reflects on her situation with Joon-young while on campus that day and she still feels conflicted about everything. Jung-kyung stops by Professor Yoo’s office to confront him about the video recording. She brings a few of Joon-young’s CD recordings from years before with her as evidence that it was Joon-young who was playing the piano piece in the Youtube recording. With the evidence, Jung-kyung demands for Professor Yoo to delete the recording and apologize to Joon-young.
Joon-young finds Jung-kyung on campus so the two talk to each other briefly about the situation. Joon-young’s grateful for Jung-kyung’s work, but he also doesn’t have much else to say to her. However, Jung-kyung has plenty she wants to talk to Joon-young about. Why did he play Schumann’s ‘Träumerei’ in that recording? Although Joon-young reasons that it was because he wanted to play it one last time as a way to end everything, Jung-kyung argues that it must have been because he’s not over her just yet. That could explain as to why he didn’t want Song-Ah to know about the video. Joon-young disagrees and reiterates the same thing he told Team Leader Cha. He wanted the video to be taken down because he was afraid Song-Ah would worry. It’s because he has feelings for Song-Ah that he didn’t want her to know about the recording.
Jung-kyung has no problem twisting the truth and revealing lies to Song-Ah to her own advantage. Upon ending her conversation with Joon-young, Jung-kyung strikes one up with Song-Ah as the two encounter each other on campus. She first brings up about the recent Youtube video of Joon-young playing Schumann’s ‘Träumerei’ disguised under Professor Yoo’s name. Joon-young started playing the song again just recently just like how he would send Jung-kyung recordings of him playing the song every year on her birthday. The fact that he’s playing the song again must indicate something. Song-Ah understands where Jung-kyung is trying to get at and she’s completely heartbroken. She’s close to crying at school and she breaks down at home. Song-Ah once thought that music could console her and that’s something that she wanted to believe at that moment. But just as she opens up her violin case and she’s about to play the violin, she struggles. Any hope of being consoled by music diminishes and it’s too much for Song-Ah to process.
Song-Ah visits Dong-yoon later on that night at his workshop to get her violin fixed. He can tell that something is off with Song-Ah so he steps outside to do something. That something turned out to be just exactly what Song-Ah needed and Min-sung shows up to the workshop not too long afterwards. Song-Ah cries upon reuniting with her best friend and the two give each other a tight hug. Dong-yoon hides outside of his workshop to give the two friends some room and time to themselves (huuuuge kudos to Dong-yoon for doing the right and smart thing! I love it!). So with some help and support from Min-sung, Song-Ah meets with Joon-young that night to talk to him. She cuts to the chase and admits that she wants to stop seeing him. She wants to break up. She wants to end things.
Song-Ah’s struggling with everything that’s going on in her life and she wishes to return to the times when she was less anxious. She tried to understand Joon-young and his complicated relationship and history with Jung-kyung, but doing so only hurt her even more. It especially didn’t help with the recent recording to Schumann’s ‘Träumerei’ that she learned about from Jung-kyung. It only reaffirms everything once more for Song-Ah that he truly isn’t over Jung-kyung. So instead of waiting and suffering like she did this entire time, she’s going to let him go. Song-Ah wishes to just focus on herself now. It was too hard loving Joon-young. She never felt like she could lean on him when he himself had so much going on in his own life and was dealing with such instability as well (OOOOOH). Song-Ah calls it quits and she walks out of the practice room by herself. Upon stepping outside, she pauses as it pours and rains. Joon-young follows after her and hands over his umbrella for her to use. With Joon-young’s umbrella in her hand, Song-Ah turns her body forward and she steps away from Joon-young with tears in her eyes. She cries at the thought of breaking up with Joon-young. For someone whose heart just got broken, he’s still looking out for her and taking care of her. Why did things have to turn out this way?
Oh my, this episode (and the drama in general) was one wild rollercoaster ride! This episode was a little bit better because it felt so satisfying to watch Song-Ah finally cut things off with Joon-young after being pushed to her limits, but man, it was also so satisfying to see some other things that happened in this episode.
I love me some good angst and there was plenty of that in this episode which I loved. I’m just an angsty person in general so I love it when there’s angsty scenes and romance in dramas and this episode was no exception. I truly did feel conflicted when Song-Ah confronted Joon-young for the 400th time about his relationship with Jung-kyung and how she saw Jung-kyung leave his apartment that one night. It was so satisfying to watch her not be afraid to voice her opinion and thoughts, but it also killed me to watch her reject Joon-young’s phone calls and texts and basically ignore him. Song-Ah did so for the both of them and she really did need some time alone to think over things, but I’ll admit that it did kill me a bit to not see Joon-young and Song-Ah together. It’s not even so much the fact that they weren’t working their issues out that made me so conflicted, but just rather the fact that I felt for Song-Ah and how all her frustration, anger, and sadness finally drive her to the point where she couldn’t take it anymore. She had to say something. She had to basically tell Joon-young what he already knew and was denying and suppressing this entire time.
Joon-young can say all that he wants to and he can come up with as many reasons (or excuses) for his actions as he wants, but he can’t hide from Song-Ah. I thought it was so intriguing and interesting and fascinating that despite him not really opening up to her and telling her what was going on in his life (in fear that he would just worry her in the end), Song-Ah was already well aware of what Joon-young was going through. It showed and it showed so badly that even Song-Ah had to admit the truth to Joon-young in the end. She was aware of how much he was struggling and how his inability to sort things out in his life was what prohibited them from being together. For far too long (way longer than it should have been), Joon-young was in this gray area where he wanted to cut Jung-kyung off from his life and set boundaries with her, but yet, he would do things with her and for her and basically continue to maintain contact with her beyond a professional level. I mean, I know Joon-young tried, but in the process of trying, he neglected Song-Ah which he definitely shouldn’t have done. Joon-young thought he chose Song-Ah, but all his actions and words proved otherwise so Song-Ah chose herself in the end.
It’s as if Song-Ah read my recaps and heard my prayers because she basically said everything and did everything in this episode that I had been feeling frustrated about. I know she said a few pretty heartbreaking, hurtful, and brutal comments to Joon-young (which did make me a little sad deep down inside I’m gonna admit), but I think it was also what Joon-young needed to hear. It was a wake-up call for him and to hear these type of things from the woman who you love and want to protect? That must have hurt even more. The first punch was Song-Ah’s comment of how it wasn’t only Jung-kyung who needed to sort things out in her life, but how it was also Joon-young as well. He too has some work and digging in his life that he needs to do so he can’t be blaming Jung-kyung or making up excuses for her. The other comment was when Song-Ah thought of how unstable Joon-young was in his life and how this was what lead her to want to break up. Song-Ah was honest and truthful in that she couldn’t rely on him because he was never there for her. How could she when he was busy worrying about his own situation and Jung-kyung? It wasn’t that Song-Ah didn’t want to rely on Joon-young, it was that she couldn’t. He never really made himself available in the first place.
I think Song-Ah would have been a lot more understanding with Joon-young if it was him and his family that he put first, but he neglected Song-Ah repeatedly to focus on Jung-kyung and that’s what upset Song-Ah (it even upset me too!). That’s where Song-Ah drew the line and I don’t blame Song-Ah at all. Like I mentioned earlier, I’m just so completely satisfied and relieved that she spoke the truth to Joon-young and told him what he needed to hear. It sure was an earful, but it was also what prompted him to finally – finally – fight for Song-Ah and their relationship. It finally woke something up inside of him and made him realize that he was going to lose Song-Ah. Joon-young’s been so used to Song-Ah waiting for him (in both the crush and relationship phase) that he panicked when Song-Ah confronted him about these things. I don’t think he ever saw this coming and didn’t want their relationship to ever get to this point (I don’t think either of them ever really wanted this kind of outcome), but it got so bad to the point where Song-Ah just had to call it quits.
It hurts even more knowing that Joon-young does really still have feelings for Song-Ah. That’s not the part that I’m doubtful about. What I was doubtful about was his inability to stick by his words and to follow through with his actions. If Joon-young said he was going to cut things off with Jung-kyung to respect Song-Ah’s wishes and wants and to focus on their relationship, that’s what he should have done. But Joon-young only made things harder for Song-Ah and she eventually lost her trust in him. She had to put up with so much to the point where she was forgetting and losing herself in the process. That’s never something that you want in a relationship and this was what prompted Song-Ah to gather the courage and let go. If Song-Ah wasn’t responding to the way that Joon-young thought he was loving her and trying to protect her, then it obviously wasn’t working out and he should have taken a different approach. And yet, he kept on doing the same thing under the assumption that he was protecting Song-Ah when really it was always Song-Ah who protected him and their relationship.
Moving on from the break-up (phew, I just had to let all my thoughts out), the one other moment in this episode that definitely stood out to me was Dong-yoon contacting Min-sung to comfort Song-Ah. It was one thing for Dong-yoon to reach out to Min-sung because he knew just how much Min-sung missed Song-Ah and vice versa, but it was also interesting to watch Dong-yoon figure out Song-Ah. He knew that something was wrong with her when she was at his workshop and I think that’s telling of the years-long friendship the two have with each other. Sure, Song-Ah’s emotions and expressions gave some stuff away, but Dong-yoon wasn’t buying any of it and instead of trying to play the hero, he was smart and did the right thing by calling Min-sung to comfort Song-Ah. I think it also speak volumes about how Dong-yoon now feels about Song-Ah. I don’t think he’s completely over her just yet, but he respected her enough to respect the boundaries between them.
I think the old Dong-yoon would have definitely tried to comfort Song-Ah to make her feel better, but the new and changed Dong-yoon knew that Min-sung was the better option. It was such a great idea and I loved that this was what ultimately brought the two girls back together. It wasn’t Min-sung reaching out to Song-Ah, it wasn’t Song-Ah reaching out to Min-sung, but it was the one boy who both girls once had feelings for at one point that ended up reconnecting the two best friends back into each other’s lives. I also love how full circle the episode was with Min-sung and Song-Ah’s friendship. We saw that Song-Ah was there for Min-sung during her break-up with Dong-yoon years ago so Min-sung was there for Song-Ah when she was struggling in her relationship with Joon-young. I literally got goosebumps when Min-sung and Song-Ah hugged each other in the workshop and I’m glad that the two best friends are now best friends again.
I know this isn’t really relevant to the drama since we’re like two episodes away from the finale, but I can’t help but become more curious as to what the drama would have been like if there was more between Song-Ah and Hyun-ho. We barely got anything between them in this drama overall, but the few scenes that we did get of them got me pondering on some things. I feel like Song-Ah and Hyun-ho can actually relate to each other a lot more. They’re both dealing with this crisis in their lives where they had goals to pursue music and play the instrument that they loved while be in a healthy relationship with their significant others. However, along the way, things started getting shaky and things didn’t turn out as they wanted. Hyun-ho’s career as a cellist isn’t really taking off in Korea while Song-Ah’s never really been able to start anywhere as a violinist. The two feel conflicted to continue with their dreams and goals in life because they’re hit by their harsh reality. Combine that with their relationship problems with Jung-kyung and Joon-young respectively and I can see how Song-Ah and Hyun-ho both make for similar cases. Of course, their experiences and their lives are different, but I can’t help but also notice how they’re both going through such similar situations. Anyways, it’s too late now and it wasn’t something that the drama focused on from the beginning, but I would have liked to see more of Song-Ah and Hyun-ho. The two would have definitely made for an interesting case and relationship.
Despite the satisfaction and relief it brought to watch Song-Ah be honest with Joon-young, it does make for an interesting case with what will happen between the two in the future. I’m assuming that the two are going to make up somehow (which means the ending will probably be pretty rushed) so I don’t think the break-up will last too long. I’m curious as to how the drama is going to wrap everything up. There’s still so much to cover so we’ll see which direction the drama wants to take in terms of storytelling and execution. Again, I don’t hold too much hope or expectations. As sad as this is, I’m actually expecting something not so great, but hey, we can only go up from here, right?
Extra screenshots from the episode~