“The World of the Married” (WOM) continues to deliver emotionally while our characters seemingly make small steps towards a happy ending. This is more clearly the case for Ja Hyuk and Ye Rim. Though Ye Rim’s heart is hardened by repeated betrayals, Ja Hyuk’s words during their meal together (his first attempts at cooking for her) softens her briefly as he expresses gratitude for her unfailing care that kept their marriage together. His unconditional desire to date her and make up for all she has done for him bodes well for their marriage. It may come a little too late, but at least with three episodes to go, there’s still space for a convincing and gradual redemption of their marriage.
Things for Tae Oh and Sun Woo are infinitely more complex. After their night of passion, Sun Woo is overwhelmed by confusion – was it apology, regret or momentary desire and loneliness? Tae Oh is similarly confused, but there’s little time for them to talk about their feelings as they are drawn into handling a fight in school between Joon Young and Hae Kang. Through this, more is revealed about Joon Young’s kleptomania and his sleeping at the gaming centre. While dealing with this, Tae Oh and Sun Woo are shocked, but their interactions and expressions also reveal guilt.
Sun Woo goes all out to redeem her son, showing her selfless love for him. She kneels before Hae Kang’s mum when her son refuses to apologise, but even that is unable to move her. Da Kyung arrives to seemingly “save the day”, but ultimately to save herself as well. Sun Woo sinks into deeper emotional hell as Joon Young sends her the most hurtful message ever, asking her to get out of his life. This prompts her to seek out Tae Oh, and through their exchange, they come to the shocking realisation that Joon Young was likely at the house on the night of their passion – which pushed him to say many things that he said throughout the episode.
The episode ends on that powerful note as both Sun Woo and Tae Oh stand shocked, uncertain of how to respond to that realisation, because they themselves are unclear of what it means. No matter how they console or what they can say to Joon Young, they realise that their actions have confused this boy and made him depressed and aloof to the world around him.
What is going to happen next is anybody’s guess, but if the trailer is anything to go by, we know that Sun Woo will sink deeper, causing Tae Oh to pursue her and look for her. Is that really what Sun Woo needs at this time though? Will our lead protagonist get a respite from all the pain and turmoil that has plagued her since the start of the series? How will this series end on a satisfying note for our characters? At this point, the writer clearly wants our sympathies to be with Sun Woo. A mother-son reconciliation is certainly on the cards within the next three episodes; however, beyond that, what would a truly happy ending for Sun Woo look like? I’m looking forward with anticipation to see how the writer works this out.