Premiere Watch: Meloholic (Episode 1 Recap)

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I don’t know why I’m doing this. I saw people who’ve watched it and thought it was pretty okay/good so naturally I got curious and then I figured why not provide the ~gap~ in the community and recap the first episode for all those people who are curious whether to watch it or not too. Hope this helps!

Reason for Watching

I GOT CURIOUS. Seriously, that’s the only reason. Oh, and because it only has 10 episodes and that made it seem like a non-commitment so I tried it. And honestly, I don’t think I’m gonna like it much so it’s safe to try it. It wouldn’t be taking up the energy reserves I have for This Life is Our First.

RECAP

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We open with a shot of Eunha University Job Fair, where a group of three girls walk the school grounds, only to hear someone shouting Seol-ah. This makes the girls stop as Seol-ah is one of them and we see a dorky guy in glasses on top of a building. This is YOO EUN-HO (played by U-know Yunho) and he’s so unabashedly proclaiming his love from the rooftops. Literally. Seol-ah’s friends tell her she must be so happy and Seol-ah answers that she is but in reality, she feels so embarrassed of it all. They ask her to answer him and she says she loves him too despite being embarrassed.

It’s June 24, 2014, also known as Kiss Day. Eun-ho has cake with him and rings the doorbell of Seol-ah’s apartment unit. No one answers the doorbell so he calls her but he couldn’t reach her. He tries the passcode that he knows but it doesn’t let him in, thinking it strange that she changed her passcode. He then goes to the unit next door, introducing himself as the boyfriend of the girl next door, and asks the hooded guy whose face can’t be seen if he could put the cake in their fridge since it’d melt if he just left it by Seol-ah’s door. The person gets it and closes the door on him right away, but Eun-ho got a sneak inside the unit where there were lots of balloons, as if that person is also preparing a party.

Eun-ho leaves and imagines Seol-ah’s reaction to the cake he made, saying it’s delicious. She then asks him to stay the night and he’s all too happy with his daydreams, even replying that he’s not ready to do the deed yet. Only to be woken up from his daydream with a text from Seol-ah: “Let’s break up.” Lightning flashes and it rains, while Eun-ho says that it’s a horrible joke. He tries to call her but it seems like she already blocked him. She texts him not to call again and he doesn’t understand so he asks her why is she breaking up with him. She says it’s because he doesn’t know how women think.

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It’s raining hard now and Eun-ho is sad, but not for long because a hooded figure appears and chases him down the street and hits him with a stone to the head. He falls on his knees and that’s when lightning strikes him, killing him. His last thoughts were if he knew Seol-ah well, she wouldn’t have left him and he wouldn’t have died like this. The hooded figure checks on Eun-ho, touching him, when Eun-ho suddenly opens his eyes and touches the hooded figure’s feet to try and prevent him from escaping. But he ends up hearing his thoughts and even seeing bits of his past, where the hooded figure had lighted candles on his flat while he types “I will kill them all” on a laptop, along with a wall full of photos of a girl.

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Eun-ho is now in a hospital, where the TV plays news that a woman was found dead in her apartment this morning. A nurse touches Eun-ho (cameo by Gong Seung-yeon!), and he hears her thoughts (and curses) about how her parents nag her whatever situation she’s in. The nurse sees that he’s awake and asks him nicely how he is, while thinking that he got mugged last night and that his life is a mess. Eun-ho sits up and asks her why she’s cursing. She’s shocked to hear this because she’s only thinking it but Eun-ho tells her that she kept cursing about her life and about him too. The nurse denies it and tries to leave him and tells him that the doctor’s coming soon. Eun-ho then holds her wrist to stop her, and he sees that earlier, the nurse picked her nose and put them on a cup of coffee, while spitting in another. DISGUSTING. Haha! Eun-ho is then perplexed what’s happening.

While walking around the hospital, a woman asks him for directions and touches his hand to thank him, with which he hears her thoughts about how pale and skinny he is. He asks her what she just said and she explains that she just thanked him. He realizes that he can read minds now.

While a police officer (Woo-tak’s partner in While You Were Sleeping!) interviews him about the incident, he tells him that he can now read minds. Of course, the police officer doesn’t believe him and tells him that he just needs to rest more. To make him believe, he holds the police officer’s hand but he can’t read his thoughts. Back in school, a guy friend meets him and touches him and yet he also can’t read his mind. Eun-ho feels relieved that he hasn’t gone crazy and that he can’t read minds after all. He then sees Seol-ah walking and thinks that she could have informed him of how and what she thinks so he could have learned, since he’s good at studying. Aw, poor bb.

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He ends up touching the hand of a woman inside an elevator, where he hears her thoughts that he’s not her type. Then a whole group of girls enter the elevator, leaving him in contact with a lot of females and all of their thoughts crowd his mind and he feels a bit like losing it. He then realizes that he can only read the minds of females. (So the hooded figure who hit him with a stone to the head is female?)

He then drops by Seol-ah’s apartment, ready to make up with her. He tells her that she doesn’t have to worry because he can now understand her because he can hear her thoughts now. (Dude, that’s not how you do it.) But when he touches her, he realizes that Seol-ah has been seeing another guy and cue, a sweaty guy with a kiss mark leaves the apartment.

Eun-ho and Seol-ah talk and he asks her if she broke up with him because of the other guy. She says it isn’t that but she broke up with him because of him. She says that the other guy is just someone she knew and that he was there because she’s scared since the girl next door died just recently. He then begs her to just tell him that there was nothing between her and that other guy and she touches him to placate him and that’s when he sees into her past that when he dropped by her place, that other guy was there. And that she broke up with him via text while sleeping with another person.

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He gets a nosebleed from everything he sees and tells her how she’s so mean for cheating on him.

You liked yourself, not me. You liked doing surprise events in front of people. You shouted that you loved me in front of people. You gave me the bag and hairpin that you made yourself. You also gave me the tampon you made yourself. When did I ever ask for those? I hate receiving handmade gifts. Have you ever tried to find out what I like? See? You didn’t like me. You just wanted to be a devoted boyfriend. You cannot learn about love from textbooks. It’s not an exam that you can be rewarded from liking somebody.

And here I am yelling: YOU MADE HER A TAMPON???

Also, poor bb. He tried so hard! He’s adorable!

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Eun-ho ruminates by the Han River, where a drunk girl sits beside him. He looks at her a bit judgingly and she sasses him and asks him if it’s the first time he’s seeing a drunk girl who just got dumped. This is HAN YE-RI (played by Kyung Su-jin) who I assume is the meek/shy personality. He tries to leave but she holds onto him and he hears her thoughts about liking a guy who suddenly disappeared. Eun-ho sits back down and tells her he also got dumped today. He finally knew what she likes even if she doesn’t tell him but it’s useless now. He laments that she wasn’t all about somebody who tries hard. Ye-ri then says that it’s like a miracle to be able to like somebody and that it’s right to like someone with everything you have. Eun-ho is placated that he wasn’t wrong to give his all and Ye-ri offers him soju to drink, telling him that that girl doesn’t deserve his love. They drink to their woes by the Han River and Ye-ri complains that he’s drinking too much when it’s her soju. Haha, I love her already.

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Drunk now, Eun-ho tells Ye-ri that he can read thoughts and she challenges him to read her. But he sees two people in her and not one, where we intercut with HAN JOO-RI, the foxy personality.

In the morning, a cleaner wakes up Eun-ho, who fell asleep under the bridge by the river. He asks where is the woman he was with last night and he just sees that Ye-ri drew on his hand and teased him. Eun-ho then tells his friend Professor KIM JOO-SEUNG about his new ability and his professor tries to call up a psychiatrist for him. A female professor comes inside the room while they’re talking and Eun-ho plans to demonstrate his powers by holding her hand and telling his professor what his colleague thinks. But what he sees is quite traumatizing where the professors just get it on the table. Ha!

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He quickly lets go of the professor’s hand and then reenacts what he just saw. TO EVERYONE’S MORTIFICATION. Including me. But I’m also laughing. Hahaha! Which ends in his professor getting slapped because the lady taught he tattled on them. Hahaha!

His professor believes him now and actually skips in happiness, calling it a blessing now. Eun-ho doesn’t think it’s a blessing when he sees things he doesn’t even want. His professor thinks he should go big and he can win over Kim Hye-soo, Song Hye-kyo, and Jeon Ji-hyun now that he has this power. HAHAHA Or maybe he can go international and win over Scarlett Johansson or Jennifer Lopez or the princess of Monaco. His professor then tells him that they should hit up whichever college has the highest population but Eun-ho informs him that he enlisted in the army in a fit of anger. He enlists in the army and promises his hyung that when he comes back from the army, he’ll have the most awesome girlfriend.

Time jump to the 2017 University Job Fair where two guys fantasize about a girl in the standee advertisements. Someone approaches them asking for directions and they end up slack-jawed to see the girl in the standee in the flesh.

In an auditorium, we see a snazzy, not-a-dork-anymore Eun-ho giving a talk about proving unexplainable events like supernatural powers with a more scientific approach and that he thinks it’s the right attitude for psychology students like him to have. His presentation ends and we see all the girls in the class look at him longingly, even his professor. The class ends but the female celebrity from a while ago enters the class and asks to talk to Eun-ho. This girl is Jae-hee and she slaps him in front of the whole class and tells him she loves him. Eun-ho hugs her back, while the whole class takes videos. Another girl wearing a mask and a cap has entered the room too (it’s Ye-ri) and sees the public display of affection ongoing and she has an incredulous look on her face. Eun-ho then winks at Ye-ri, as if she is in-the-know of what’s happening. Ye-ri sits down, perplexed by everything. Eun-ho and Jae-hee talk outside class, while everyone looks on. Jae-hee is huffy that he didn’t call her after being discharged in the army. He dodges the question and tells her she’s gotten prettier and when she tries to hug him, he stops her and tells her that paparazzi are around. He asks her if she wants to have a scandal with a non-celebrity but he says that won’t do because this small of a scandal couldn’t cover up her cheating scandal. Or maybe she’s trying to spin it that she waited for him to be back from the army?

She asks him how he knows that and we see that he’s been holding her hands, and thus, reading her mind. He tells her it’s obvious, and then he drops super specific tidbits about her of what she likes and how she really is compared to her image. And that she just can’t say no to guys that like her which is why she ends up cheating on them. She asks him if he wants to be her boyfriend but he says that he’s not interested in dating. She asks if there’s something wrong with him and he says that there is, while looking at his hand.

Photos of Eun-ho and Jae-hee circulate online and girls from his school talk about him not being interested in dating. We see girls fall at his feet and he just cooly rejects them all. They then lament that now he’s dating Jae-hee, an idol. Which is when Eun-ho comes from behind them and thinks to himself that he should have done that strategy earlier, so girls wouldn’t bother him.

Professor Kim then shows Eun-ho his brain scans, showing that his blood vessels are popping. He tells him not to use his power all the time because too much information coming would stress him out. Eun-ho tells him not to nag him and they do feel like real brothers. Professor Kim then asks Eun-ho why he dumped Jae-hee. Professor Kim then asks him to remember what he told him when he enlisted in the army, that he will date awesome girls when he gets discharged. But why isn’t he doing that and instead he’s dumping every girl? Eunho: Imaging you can hear what she’s thinking when you’re making a move. Professor Kim does imagine it and he keeps on stopping from having sex because he keeps on hearing the girl’s thoughts, including being bored and wanting to go home already. WHAT IS WITH THE HOT/RACY SCENES BY THESE SIDE CHARACTERS?

Eun-ho tells him that it’s no good knowing everything because he just ends up disappointed every time. If he gets introduced to someone different though, he might try. If a girl checks four qualities he’s looking for, he might give it a try. These are: must not pretend, put on an innocent face, or lie, and she must be unpredictable. Professor Kim thinks there’s no one like that and Eun-ho agrees.

Upon opening his locker, Eun-ho gets dizzy and his vision blurs. He then gets surprised by Ye-ri wearing a cap and mask once again, who’s beside his locker. Ye-ri asks him if he knows her and he flashes back to him hugging Jae-hee in front of the class. He says that of course he knows her and she then asks him from where and how. She backtracks though and tells that she doesn’t want to hear it and Eun-ho is confused because she’s the one who asked. She then implores him to completely forget her and that if ever he met her before, that it was not her. Lastly, she asks for them to pretend like they don’t know each other at school. He feels like she’s familiar though.

At a cafe, Ye-ri works part-time and side-eyes a couple celebrating a birthday and doing some cheesy display of affection. She then throws a bucket of water at the window they’re seated at, commenting that it’s not appropriate to be seated that close in public. Someone is bitter and cynical, I see. The couple starts to leave but Ye-ri wouldn’t let them leave without cleaning the confetti they got strewn all over the floor. Attagirl.

The couple continue their ostentatious display of affection somewhere else, where three guys look on, calling them an eyesore. (It’s Bok-nam from This Life is Our First!) They ask how dare that guy date someone while he was in the army, and that it’s kind of amazing too. We learn that the guy was from the same troop as Eun-ho. This guy apparently went on a blind date during his holiday but got dumped. He couldn’t eat or sleep for days, which is when Eun-ho offered to help him. Eun-ho said he just have to see this girl once. Eun-ho then introduces himself and shakes the girl’s hand when they meet, which of course lets him read the girl’s mind. Cue to a successful match! The story then spread in the army. All the soldiers did what Eun-ho told them to and the girls who left the soldiers came running back to their arms again. And even those who didn’t have girlfriends prior got ones too!

Exposition device of a person also says that Jae-hee, the idol singer, sang a concert and met Eun-ho in the army. They then see Eun-ho walking and that’s when Byung-cheol (Kim Min-kyu) rushes and introduces himself. Byung-cheol asks for Eun-ho’s help in winning over a certain girl named Kim Go-eun, so Eun-ho purposely drops her stuff and helps her pick them up. Where he touches her hand.

He reports back to Byung-cheol and chides him for not telling him that they actually don’t know each other. Things have to be planned if that’s the case. Byung-cheol tells him that she’s lying because they’ve spent nights together and he did everything for her. Byung-cheol can’t believe it and runs away.

In an auditorium, Professor Kim discusses two murder cases that happened in 2014, three months from each other. One was when after Eun-ho gained his power. Eun-ho tries to remembers the vision he had that night when he touched the hooded figure, and what he saw inside the room of Seol-ah’s neighbor.

Professor Kim asks the class if they think the two cases are done by the same person, and most of the class agree. He then calls on Kim Go-eun, and Eun-ho’s ears perk up at the name of Byung-cheol’s crush. But it’s actually Ye-ri who raises her hand. Eun-ho remembers her as the girl by the locker and muses that she’s actually Kim Go-eun and not the girl from earlier. She answers that the murder could happen again since the killer hasn’t been caught and that it seems like both cases had the same suspect. The class is interrupted by someone shouting Kim Go-eun and it’s Byung-cheol on top of the building.

He professes his love for Kim Go-eun and campus security and the police prepare for the worst that he might jump. People stare at Ye-ri, while she panics, not knowing what to do. The police then brings the Kim Go-eun Eun-ho approached, and he’s also confused who’s the real Kim Go-eun. Eun-ho approaches Ye-ri and tells her that she’s not the real Kim Go-eun and asks her who the hell she is then.

COMMENTS

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Erm, this happens whenever he touches a girl and hears her thoughts… I mean, I guess they had to show it one way or another but uhm, UHM, it’s just so cheesy! And the CGI, okaaaaaaaaayyy, I guess I shouldn’t really expect.

I’m not too sure about the tone of the show because it feels that it tries to be comedic but it doesn’t quite get me there. I do find it amusing at times though so that’s okay. Also, random side characters just get it on and uhm, it’s weird? I don’t care for hot and racy scenes in kdramas but WHO CARES ABOUT THESE NAMELESS PEOPLE? Just weird.

This show has only ten episodes to tackle its plot but the first episode introduced so many threads to follow that I’m not sure if the show can follow through on its premise. I guess it’s only the first episode and maybe we’ll get more of the Ye-ri/Joo-ri dichotomy on the next episode as the preview showed.

The first episode was okay, although do approach it with zero expectations. Yunho wasn’t entirely bad (yes!) and he was actually adorable as the puppy version of 2014. But he was bland when he got all cool, which made me lost interest in his character. Now, I don’t know if that’s on the writing or on the acting. Maybe both? He’s not a character I’m rooting for too because he got an ego after getting his power. It feels like he looks down on women now because he knows that he can know everything. And I guess, sure, he’s helping his fellow men get girls but it’s also an invasion of privacy and agency! And these girls deserve better than these loser shits that knew intel they shouldn’t have known! If he only used his powers for himself, maybe that would feel less like preying on unassuming women but he’s helped his whole army troop!

Kyung Su-jin as Ye-ri was a blast though. I thought she would be meek and shy but she actually isn’t. She’s quite sassy and brave too! I’m quite curious how she’ll handle the two vastly different characters she’s about to play.

You can always just watch the show for this cutie, though I don’t know how big his role is in here.

VERDICT: I wouldn’t continue the recaps for this one and I’m not actually itching to watch the next episode too. Maybe I’ll end up watching this when I’m in need of something brainless to watch but for now, it’s gonna be on the backburner. It’s quite enjoyable, sure, but it’s also quite embarrassing. In that way that you just wish it’s so much better than it is? I quite enjoyed My Secret Romance back then (before it decided to be uncharacteristically angsty) but admittedly, it did feel low-budget. That’s the same for Meloholic but I even feel that it’s much more subpar than My Secret Romance. Just don’t expect and do not overthink it and you might kinda enjoy it?

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