What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim Episode 3: Girl Power

Secretary Kim is adorable – the show AND the character. No wonder Lee Young Joon is smitten. I wish someone would look at me that way. Has he always been like this or is it a case of you-don’t-know-what-you’ve-got-til-it’s-gone? Either way, I’m loving it.

So sweet . . . sort of

Should love be about the motivation or the results? Joon Young takes Mi So’s survey answers about a perfect date and surprises her with an exclusive night at the amusement park. (Poor Park Seo Joon had to wear a blank expression and his arms crossed through the wild roller coaster scene. Looking close, I think he was having a hard time keeping a poker face.) Her generous boss lets Secretary Kim ride the carousel seven times, lends her his jacket on the ferry ride, gifts her a stuffed cow with a diamond necklace in its pocket, and tries to give her a goodbye smooch, but is rejected. Apart from the lack of liplock, not a bad thank you gift. But Mi So’s couch psychiatrist sister points out, it wasn’t a gift so much as possessiveness – him not wanting to lose one of his objects. Yes, his secret agenda is to keep her around, but we all know it’s about way more than that. His motivation may be skewed, but the way he happily watches her unabashed joy as she rides the carousel, or calls her pretty as she enjoys the fireworks has nothing to do with keeping an employee. And more importantly, he starts opening up about his safely guarded world. During dinner, Young Joon confides how hard skipping two grades was as a child and that, of all the fourth grade bullies, his brother was the worst. Diamonds are nice, but sharing painful memories is worth way more to a deepening relationship.

Neckties are the new backhug

Mi So fixes Young Joon’s crooked tie once again, but this time it leads to a flashback of their “almost kiss”. (I wonder if this necktie fad will catch on in other dramas. It sure is a sweet, but sexy way to insert a little skinship.) But unfortunately for Young Joon, he isn’t the only man who wears them. Mi So steps out on the town with her first blind date, and when she sees his tie askew, she automatically reaches to fix it. Who knows if she would have really done it, because she is stopped halfway through by her bellowing boss. Doesn’t she know that’s THEIR thing! Young Joon shouldn’t have worried. Blind Date Guy was a little OCD, especially when Mi So accidentally took some of his food. I don’t think she’ll be pursuing the relationship much further.

Cable ties are creepy

Mi So may freak out at spiders, but her boss has a more unusual phobia. He breaks out in a sweat when he sees cable ties. The rather hapless new secretary thought she was being helpful by tidying his computer cords with the little, plastic gadgets, and gets chewed out by a worried Secretary Kim. Later, Mi So discovers scars on Young Joon’s ankle and the audience’s puzzle pieces keep falling into place. Add this information to the scary dream he had in the last episode and it’s obvious that he was kidnapped and tied up as a boy. Is it just a coincidence that Mi So was asking her reporter date to dig up information on a kidnapped child from years ago? This all seems connected with the “oppa” drawing in her old diary. We now know the surname of Mi So’s childhood “oppa” was Lee. That pretty much cinches it that the boy was either Lee Young Joon or his older brother, Lee Sung Yeon.

Sibling Rivalry

Is this a Cain and Abel thing? Young Joon’s older brother finally appears and it looks like their relationship is anything but affectionate. Whereas younger brother is a workaholic perfectionist who stayed home and ran the company, older brother traveled the world and wrote bestsellers under the pen name Morpheus. We still don’t know why the two don’t get along, but perhaps Sung Yeon was jealous of his two-grade-skipping, genius brother. He definitely doesn’t seem thrilled to hear the news from his mother that Young Joon is doing well. The typical K-drama formula will make this shadowy, new character a romantic rival for Secretary Kim’s affections. Time will tell if he’s the kind of second lead you break your heart over. But I definitely wasn’t getting that vibe from the get go.

Skinship takes a big step forward

At the end of Mi So’s Retirement Present Date, Young Joon leans in to fulfill Mi So’s final survey wish – a romantic kiss. But he’s denied as he gets a faceful of toy cow instead. (Can I just point out that this is the guy who refuses to let any of his “girlfriends” touch him? He has no problem getting touchy-feely with Secretary Kim.) But Young Joon wasn’t the only one seeking some skinship in this episode. 2 PM’s Chansung makes a guest appearance as an eager co-worker on the company’s Sports Day. He and Mi So team up for the three-legged race and their victorious hug at the end just about short circuits Young Joon’s brain. He cancels next year’s competition and storms off so quickly that he twists his ankle on the stairs.

This is followed by my favorite part of the episode where he and Mi So argue like an old married couple about whether or not he should go to the hospital. Seriously, in that moment they were anything but boss and secretary. She helps him to his feet and they have their own three-legged hobble as she sees him home. This leads to an inflammatory conversation between the two about how much physical contact in a game is okay in the name of winning. Young Joon keeps getting closer and closer (for argument’s sake, of course) and somehow Mi So winds up lying on top of him on the couch. Was anyone else thinking the same thing I was at that moment: Don’t you dare go to commercial! Of course, that was when the episode ended. But the good news is we only have to wait 24 hours to find out what happened!


Until then, keep the K-love alive!


Dramas With a Side of Kimchi

2 thoughts on “What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim Episode 3: Girl Power

    • Does it? I also remember a scene from 1% of Something where the heroine talks about the secret meaning of giving one as she grabs ahold of the guy’s tie. I wonder why more dramas don’t use this trick? It totally works.

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