“Marriage Without Love” Week Five Recap: When Things Get Real

While this week gave us some developments, we’ve now arrived at the spot in the drama where you can see the writer doing her best to stretch the story for several more episodes. This generally involves people who are fully aware of their feelings, lying.


Episode 9 begins with Jang Mi running away. Her mother is confused by her actions but upon learning that Gi Tae’s ex is present, jumps to her own conclusion and announces that the marriage will be reconsidered. Too bad that she was too immersed in her ass-kissing to notice her daughter’s spirit being broken down by the witch.

A worried Gi Tae calls Jang Mi who ignores him but lets Yeo Reum take her “faraway.”

Since Jang Mi got into Hoon Dong’s car, Gi Tae goes to his restaurant to find her after telling Se Ah who was riding with him to find her own way home. He then calls Yeo Reum upon learning that he was driving and is told that they are headed to the beach. Jang Mi finally speaks to him, apologizes and asks him not to look for her – she just needs some time away from his mother if he doesn’t want that woman to see the ugly side of her.

He ignores her request, tracks her phone and he, Hoon Dong and Se Ah take a trip to the beach.

Jang Mi and Yeo Reum get there and she jokes that she looks like a runaway bride.  She left for a variety of reasons, one being how her mother was mistreated. After breathing in the beach air and calming down, she’s ready to return to the city but not so fast because the Three Stooges are here!

He tracked her phone again? She’s mad and tries to get rid of it. Long story short, she falls down and has to change out of the wedding dress.

A little while later, Gi Tae apologizes for the stress the fake marriage is putting on her, being unable to be there for her and how it’s affecting her mother. Her mother? Se Ah shows up and explains that her mother is now reconsidering the marriage which makes it looks like Gi Tae was only apologizing to stop her from abandoning their act.

Jang Mi has had enough of him and wants to leave but with no funds nor transportation now that Hoon Dong has taken back his car, she’s forced to stay.

The ladies have some girl time where Se Ah reveals that all she wants from Gi Tae is a gift that he’s too stubborn to give and when he joins them, Jang Mi pleads with him on her behalf. If only she knew this gift was sperm. I initially thought Se Ah was crazy but she’s certainly not the first woman to attempt to trap a man with a child. The only difference is that they don’t usually reveal their plans beforehand.

There’s some cute beach fun where Gi Tae takes off his shirt, a shirtless Adonis Reum shows him what tight abs really look like and he puts his t-shirt back on (LOL), Se Ah then asks him to oil her back, Jang Mi gets jealous and retaliates by telling Yeo Reum to oil her leg (LOL) and yeah, shenanigans. It ends with all five playing in the water.

Meanwhile, Whine Hee calls Jang Mi because she needs a friend then accuses her of abandoning her for marriage when she tells her that she’s unavailable. Jang Mi invites her to join them.

Also,  Evil Mom declares victory and tells her family that the marriage will probably not take place because the other family has a problem with Gi Tae’s past. She outs her husband for wanting Se Ah for her family connections and just when she’s about to have a parade, her sister-in-law shows up with a selfie from the beach. In your face!

All five end up playing the truth game. Gi Tae refuses to answer when asked how intimate he’s been with Se Ah which apparently is an indirect admission that they slept together. They were engaged so…. Yeo Reum doesn’t reveal how many hearts he’s broken and Se Ah confesses that Gi Tae is someone who’s been in her heart… as in her boob job! Hardy har har. No one has any questions for Hoon Dong (poor thing) and when asked if he really likes Jang Mi, Gi Tae coolly says yes. Yes? YES!?!? Did he finally step up to the plate and admit to his feelings? Is he finally becoming a man?

Jang Mi’s heart starts to pound. Loudly. He likes her? She panics. No, no, no, he can’t like her. It MUST be part of the act! So she spins the bottle towards herself and confesses the truth.

The only ones in the dark were Hoon Dong who goes crazy because he’d already convinced himself to accept their relationship and Whine Hee who suddenly arrives and guilts Jang Mi for not letting her in on it sooner.

Now that it’s all out, Yeo Reum pulls his girl away for some couple time. She follows but her heart has already begun to feel uneasy. When they hear Gi Tae calling for her, they hide and watch Se Ah approach and ask him why he’s being weird. There’s no Aunty stalking them so why is he still looking for Jang Mi? And why is he acting out of character and doing things like going to the beach? Because it’s a free world? He gets defensive and tosses the question back at her, saying that she’s the strange one so she reminds him that he already knows what she wants.

She moves closer to him and tells him that she’s rented a place nearby and that she will stop threatening him if he gives her a child. Yeah, sounds about right. Who needs Viagra when there’s the threat of pregnancy? And now that she’s gotten him all hot and bothered, she kisses him. Jang Mi immediately looks away. Why does she suddenly feel funny? Sweetie, is this a multiple choice question? She wonders if she got too immersed in her lie. She starts to leave but trips and hurts her leg, alerting them to her presence.

Gi Tae – who’d been kissing for too long – breaks away from Se Ah and they take her to a nearby clinic. It’s a place that he and Se Ah previously volunteered at while they were still a couple and they meet a previous patient whose daughter’s cleft lip they’d treated. She lets them in and they stitch Jang Mi’s leg together with the lady noting that they are still well matched and wondering if they have any kids yet. Gi Tae impresses Yeo Reum with how giving he can be when he invites the lady to bring her daughter for further treatment when she’s of age.

Asking one’s ex for a child doesn’t happen everyday so the ladies talk about it when the boys leave for a bathroom break. Se Ah puts on airs and goes on and on about how getting married and having kids is more selfish than being a free spirit who doesn’t want to subject her child to being raised in a traditional family. O-kay. Like she would reject Gi Tae if he proposed to her.

Se Ah offers to help no one’s OTP get some alone time. Yeo Reum is all for it while Jang Mi’s heart remains unsettled. Alone time for them is actually baby-making time for her so she has Jang Mi plant her phone at her rented love shack knowing that Gi Tae would track it. How second lead of her to use his feelings for another woman to trap him.

Gi Tae and Jang Mi enjoy some private time on a boat although I’m not sure that “enjoy” is the right word as she spends it thinking about her fake fiance. She concludes that the sperm couple speak a language she will never understand and wonders who the real Gi Tae is.

Yeo Reum is no dummy and asks who’s really in her heart. She nervously says him and he leans in for a kiss.

Gi Tae falls for the trick and gets trapped in a room with Se Ah who gives him a “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas” speech. How can he act like nothing happened when the proof will start showing in a few months?

Yeo Reum and Jang Mi kiss but when he pulls her close, she thinks of Gi Tae and pushes him away. They are stunned for a few seconds, letting what she did sink in but she quickly recovers and claims that she’s just worried about Hyun Hee. Poor guy, he has to know that’s an excuse because if a woman pushes you off to “think about her friend,” she’s either not into you or your breath stinks.

Meanwhile, Whine Hee is blowing up Jang Mi’s phone to talk to her about the pregnancy test in her hand. Luckily for us, the ringtone is loud enough to interrupt a kiss between the exes as Gi Tae actually had his eyes shut and was about to get down to business. Was he really that horny? Regardless, Se Ah is a woman with a mission and doesn’t let the interruption keep her from unbuttoning her shirt. Thankfully, Gi Tae comes to his senses and stops her. Just because we can accept our leads kissing the wrong people doesn’t mean one night stands are okay in Episode 9.

She asks him if it’s because of Jang Mi and Sweetie, why are you so desperate? He leaves and she breaks down in tears. Poor thing. She didn’t even get to show him his handiwork.

Yeo Reum and Jang Mi return to find only a drunk Hoon Dong dozing away. Jang Mi searches for Whine Hee in the bathroom and finds her positive pregnancy test. Gi Tae joins them and the guys also find out she’s pregnant. Jang Mi gets her phone back and reads a message Hyun Hee sent – she feels that she’s in everyone’s way and asks them not to look for her. I would probably feel something for her if I didn’t know how she got pregnant in the first place.

Gi Tae figures out that she’s at a temple and all three go looking for it but fail because he gets them lost then the car gets stuck. It will take a tow truck an hour to get them so Yeo Reum is sent to find Hoon Dong.

Now alone, Jang Mi yells at Gi Tae. It’s all his fault. He’s the reason she couldn’t take Hyun Hee’s calls and she wouldn’t be able to forgive herself if something happened to her. She can’t believe she neglected her friend for a fake relationship. She missed out on reality because she got lost in a fantasy. Heck, she was even thinking of him when she was with Yeo Reum – all her real relationships are screwed up because of a fake one!

And while she rants, Gi Tae’s eyes bore into her like she’s Grandma’s Christmas pudding and when she yells that it’s all his fault, he moves in for a kiss. Finally, the right people are kissing!

With poor Yeo Reum watching from behind.

Yup, it didn’t take long for him to return. Waking the drunk guy hadn’t been easy especially as he kissed him at his first attempt. Really? All that’s left now is for Whine Hee and Gi Tae to make out. So he woke him up, they walked to the car and Yeo Reum saw them kissing… although it was more like Gi Tae sucking the life out of her. Hearing Hoon Dong’s voice brings Jang Mi back to her senses, she pushes him off and they turn around and see Yeo Reum’s stricken face, but he plays it off and feigns ignorance. Poor thing.

All four go to the temple and Whine Hee and Hoon Dong finally talk. She does her usual woe-is-me routine, talking about how she will only think of her child as gift and not burden him and he’s somehow moved to tears and hugs her from behind.

He promises to take care of her then suddenly gets horny and starts undressing. I’m so confused. All she needed to do to get him to want her was get pregnant? It’s too sudden.

The next morning, Whine Hee is pleased because she’s getting married! Your plan worked, Dear.

Later in the day, Hoon Dong’s awful mother shows up at the store to yell at her manager for having gold-digging employees. Jang Mi talks back but is interrupted by her boss who apologizes because the woman is causing a scene and a crowd has formed. Hyun Hee leaves and so does Hoon Dong’s mother.

Jang Mi finds Hyun Hee wiping her tears in the bathroom. She’s mad at how they are treated but Hyun Hee has a different attitude. She feels like a handbag standing up all day at work which is why she wanted to leave as soon as possible. She wanted to be snatched up at the highest price while she was still a young hot item and not wait till she’s taken off the shelf and dumped at an outlet. So Hoon Dong’s mother’s reaction is a small price to pay. Besides, she’d expected worse.

Hoon Dong’s frustrated mom speaks to Evil Mom about the situation and is advised to let the marriage go on as planned as the girl’s mother will inadvertently reveal her daughter’s true motives.

When Hoon Dong tells Hyun Hee while they are at breakfast with Jang Mi that his parents want to meet hers, she says it’s impossible as they are on a cruise for a few months. She claims that they work in the fashion industry and since she was raised independently, she will take care of everything and that the parents can meet at the wedding. Mm… kay? And when Hoon Dong start to insist that they meet before then, she distracts him with the baby. In real life, he should ask for a paternity test. What is up, though? Is she an orphan or is there some other reason she’s hiding her parents? I can’t say I am particularly interested either way.

Jang Mi decides to give the soon-to-be parents some alone time but when she turns to leave, sees Gi Tae. It’s panic time because they kissed! So she goes back to the table but when he sits next to her, she runs outside. He finds it amusing then follows her . When he joins her, he tells her that she’s making it obvious that something happened between them. He said the “kiss” word which makes her drag him to his clinic.

The couple in the restaurant find their behavior weird. Could their relationship be real? After all, she often stays at his apartment. Yeo Reum clears up the misunderstanding by mentioning that he lives there which leads them into thinking that the two men are a couple. The writer obviously loves to tease with homosexuality but is too chicken to take it anywhere.

When the OTP get to the clinic, Jang Mi asks him if he likes her. Instead of just confessing so that this story can move along, he laughs. Jang Mi takes that to mean that he doesn’t, which is awesome because she was getting a little confused but in that case, what was the kiss about? There’s no Aunty this time around so Gi Tae says it was to shut her motormouth.

Jang Mi finds his explanation ridiculous then he gets defensive and wonders if she liked it. Liked it? Hell no, he’s a bad kisser! Then she asks him to clarify that the kiss meant nothing. Dude, when a woman asks you the same question several times in different ways, it means she’s not satisfied with the answer you’ve given. Be a man!

Meanwhile, Evil Mom puts the squeeze on Jang Mi’s mom whose greed has put her back on board the marriage. The ladies meet,  Jang Mi’s mom apologizes then Evil Mom flips it on her and she finds herself volunteering to take on some of the responsibilities of the wedding including picking a date.

Gi Tae and Jang Mi (with Jang Mi’s mom) get their fortunes read. The fortune teller says that Gi Tae has terrible luck, is bad at maintaining relationships and not only is he lonely, he passes it on to those around him. Jang Mi on the other hand is filled with good fortune and he would be a fool to lose her as she’s his savior. He bets that she’s already saved his life at least once.

Does that mean the marriage would be detrimental to Jang Mi? Nope, because they are very sexually compatible. VERY.

The OTP walk together from day into night and Jang Mi proves the fortune teller right by saving him from getting hit by a bike. In other words, we get one of those forced sexually tense moments where they are thrown in each other’s arms which is now intensified by the prediction that they would set their bed on fire.  It’s cable, do we get to see? But honestly speaking, the fortune teller talked it up so much that they are destined to be disappointed.

Evil Mom picks out a menu that’s $145/head and makes Jang Mi’s mom pay for the relatives gifts that her daughter had already returned. The bills are pilling up high so she puts her house and restaurant up for sale.

Why would she go to such lengths? To make sure her daughter can hold her head up high in front of her mother-in-law. She shows her an old article where Evil Mom got a pink diamond at her vow renewal and promised to pass it along to her daughter-in-law. Her mom tells her to get that ring and not live like her.

Jang Mi takes the magazine article over to Gi Tae. The charade has to stop because it is turning her home upside down. He gives her a pensive look and instructs her to demand for that ring. He knows it will work because he’s certain that his mom will not give it to her. And that it should be interpreted as her opposing the marriage.

Later that night, Jang Mi can’t stop complaining about Gi Tae which leads Hyun Hee into informing her that she’s fallen for him.

Gi Tae returns home to find Jang Mi sleeping on his couch and we get the classic scene of the male lead brushing his love interest’s hair while she sleeps.

Jang Mi wakes up and asks why she can’t get the ring. Why is she so unmarriageable? Is it her family background or her personality? Or is it only for someone like Se Ah? Gi Tae says she has it wrong and we finally get the answer.

A flashback shows engaged Se Ah and Gi Tae running into his father at a jewelry store. They think it is for his wife till Gi Tae finds a card addressed to another woman.

Then later on, while getting their photos taken for the magazine article, Se Ah mentions the ring which is the first time Evil Mom hears about it.

Father and son go to a room to talk about it and this is when Gi Tae learns of his father’s affair. He was also shocked to learn that his mom was well aware of it and a few minutes later, to save face, she orchestrates a happy family moment by wearing the ring at the photo shoot. All because she’s obsessed with keeping up appearances. They absolutely cannot let the world learn the truth about their family. From what we’ve seen, his father isn’t exactly discreet so are they sure that the world doesn’t know? Plus that mistress walks around proudly wearing his ring. I bet she doesn’t hide him.

Gi Tae is in tears as he narrates the story so Jang Mi walks over, takes his hand and comforts him. It’s okay for her to learn his secret because she’s not real.

Se Ah and Yeo Reum walk in on the tender moment. It’s very hard to ignore what’s happening between them. Se Ah turns around and leaves while Yeo Reum is heartbroken. He’s hurt that she let him witness that given that she knows how hard he’s been pretending to be unaware. Bro, if you’ve watched any dramas, you would have called this several episodes ago.

Gi Tae and Jang Mi go to his family house for the last time. She sits across from Evil Mom and asks for the ring. She goes on and on about how receiving it would mean that she’s been fully accepted so she has to have it. We get a shot of Daddy’s mistress with the ring on her finger and just as Jang Mi starts to say that she’s clearly been rejected, Evil Mom slides a ring box to her. The fakers are shocked.

Jang Mi takes a good look at it and asks if the ring is really precious to her. Evil mom says it is then she picks up a big rock and smashes it.

It’s a fake. Jang Mi says that she now truly understands how his mother feels about her but that she should also let go of Gi Tae and stop trying to force her “perfect” marriage on him. Her mom figures out that she knew the truth about the ring and wonders if they asked for it to humiliate her. Jang Mi says it’s because they wanted to finally hear her true feelings; that her marriage is not as it seems and that she’s having a hard time.

She acknowledges that she cares about Gi Tae’s happiness but if she really wants that, she needs to stop trying to force her perfect marriage on him, stop living in fake happiness and try to be happy herself. And that she doesn’t realize that she’s the very reason Gi Tae rejects marriage.

Evil Mom goes to her room and breaks down in tears.

Jang Mi walks out of the house and Gi Tae follows her. She wipes her tears and asks how her last performance was. He doesn’t want to thank her because it would be acknowledging that it’s over.

She stretches out her hand for a goodbye handshake but he takes it and pulls her in for a hug. She tells him that even though she will no longer be by his side, he should stop bottling up his feelings. He hugs her tightly- he really wanted to keep being by her side. She declares their marriage con finally over.

They keep hugging till Grandma asks for a replay. Did she just say “marriage con?” Dun! Dun! Dun!


Even though we had a kiss and Jang Mi is struggling with her feelings, I didn’t really connect as much with these episodes. I don’t know, maybe because it now feels like they are going through the motions or something. It might just be me, though.

Evil Mom is just so mean that I kinda lost sympathy for her. She’s obsessed with appearances yet I don’t get the idea that many of her friends like her much. So what’s the point? Just to feel superior even though she knows it’s all smoke and mirrors?

Anyway, the jig is up which means that Gi Tae and Jang Mi now have to find other excuses to spend time together. I am beyond ready for the romance to begin so I hope they hit the gas pedal and get us there ASAP. Gi Tae is too passive – even after a kiss – so I hope to see him more assertive next week.

Till then!


  • Newbie says:

    Whine Hee is a fantastic name for one half of the least likeable couple of this show!

    All those folks thinking a baby can save a relationship or tie someone down for good are delusional and in for a big surprise. A friend of mine once said to me: ‘A baby will make you want to throw the dishes to your partner’s head’. Guess what. He was right.

    • trotwood says:

      I agree about the baby comment. Even if Whine Hee does really love him (which I have doubts about; he seems to represent security to her more than anything), that love will be tested through pregnancy and newborn world. Who is prepared for that? I know I wasn’t. There is no sleep and sometimes you go for days without having time to take a shower. Yes, newborns can make people grow closer but only in the way being in prison or in a war zone or mental rehabilitation does.

      • Newbie says:

        Lol. Hubby and I repeatedly said: ‘No one told us about THAT!’ after having our first son. Junior didn’t sleep for 20 (in words: twenty) months and took his crying time-out from midnight to 4 am. Every. Effin. Night. For. 20. Months. After that he slept through but continued to wake us with hysterical crying every morning before 6am. On weekends earlier than during the week. Of course. For years.

        Btw hubby was working and writing his dissertation in his spare time and on weekends during that time. Never knew, someone could be so tired.
        I wonder how we mustered the courage to try for a second child. Which was born and the most low-maintenance kid imaginable. There is a God!

        If my husband and I weren’t such a damn good team I’m sure we’d have seperated during those horrible months. But everything was worth it as we’ve got the two best boys possible.

      • skelly says:

        So true, Trotwood! My husband and I got along fabulously before we had kids. We loved our life, and so we waited five years, wallowing in selfish luxury, before we had our first daughter. And then two more, because we adored our kids and loved being parents. But the sleepless nights, the frantic trips to the doctor’s office, the worries about money, friends, money, education, money, the toxic society we live in… absolutely, it was the companionship borne of years spent on the front lines, hunkered down in the foxhole debating possible life-saving strategies. We still get along fabulously, but not without some painful bumps in the road. Parenthood is not for wimps. I feel sorry for that little double-line-on-a-stick already.

  • tessieroo says:

    LMAO – Whine Hee.

    Maybe she’s under the illusion that his family is so rich, she’ll have maids and nanny’s? No idea what her story is. I find GT’s father the most loathsome character, he’s revolting. Se-Ah needs to check into a mental clinic and GT’s already seen her boobs since he installed ’em. *heh* I’m ready for someone to light a fire under GT’s bum!

  • DMKO says:

    Amen! Come on baby, light that fire!

    • skelly says:

      I think Gi Tae needs more than just a few cheers from the sidelines to get a move on. Frankly, he is one of the most passive and confused leads I’ve seen. Se Ah is basically demanding stud services, but rather than a forceful or at least indignant response he oscillates between fear, repulsion, and resignation. He doesn’t want her, but he doesn’t have the strength to get rid of her.

      He is realizing that he actually likes Jang Mi, but he is too afraid of his mother’s anger and Jang Mi’s possible rejection to actually do anything about it.

      I think you could swap the genders of the leads in this drama, because there is a lot of the traditionally female in Gi Tae’s characterization, while Jang Mi has several characteristics that are usually given to the male lead. Very interesting.

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