If you find that Eat 2 isn’t so much into food porn as Eat, you aren’t alone. Even the types of food introduced in Eat 2 has kinda “lowered” in standards — we now have home cook food featured alongside fast food and convenience stores’ instant food. With less attention on the actual eating, Eat 2 gravitates towards the other tasty component of its earlier successful formula — its characters’ portrayals and interactions.
1. Saccharine sweetness
Soo-ji is one foot up to attaining her marry-a-civil-servant dream when Sang-woo proposes that they date. Though it’s obvious that these 2 need more work if they ever want to consider marriage — Soo-ji is still not her normal gruff self in front of Sang-woo.
Despite that though, their honeymoon period is still rather sickly sweet — and hilarious. Well, if one party insists on acting the demure damsel in front of her beau, it will only allow for plenty of opportunities for ridicules. For example, after hearing Dae-young’s offhand congratulatory remark that Sang-woo still “chose to date Soo-ji, even though he hates dating colleagues”, Soo-ji turns up with a split personality next day at work. When alone with Sang-woo, she is the adoring kitty-cat, but once any third party turns up, she switches on the cool-cat mode. Which can be within a space of like 30 secs? She simpers up to Sang-woo’s idea of a movie date in the lift, then immediately flies off to one corner absorbed in her phone when another person enters the lift. Much to Sang-woo’s amusement.
Interestingly, Sang-woo seems to be more relaxed and open to admitting their relationship than Soo-ji, despite him being the one who had such strict protocols with dating colleagues previously. He is on the verge of telling In-ah about the both of them when In-ah gate crashes their cycling date. Soo-ji, on the other hand, holds on (rather zealously) to the underground relationship idea. She immediately drags in Dae-young to counter In-ah’s suspicions. Earlier, Soo-ji had also swooped up close nose-to-nose (read: assumed kissy mode) with Sang-woo when she spotted In-ah in an underground carpark. Sang-woo was surprised at the sudden “skinship”, but disappointed when he found out that Soo-ji wasn’t putting a move on him, but was juz hiding from In-ah. (i seriously doubt In-ah spotted them)
But aww, I really think Sang-woo is getting fonder of Soo-ji. Once he has decided to date her, we can see that he is the one who initiates the dating activities, the conversations and even the skinship (he kisses her!! woots!). Whereas, Soo-ji only dares to imagine those stuff. It’d be really funny if Sang-woo gets to peek into Soo-ji’s dirty little mind — his idea of a camping trip in Soo-ji’s mind becomes an opportunity to snuggle in one sleeping bag. When in actuality, they will be sleeping in separate TENTS.
2. Refreshing tartness
Nothing is better than throwing in a little bit of sourness to stave off that overwhelming sweetness in your mouth — enter Dae-young and the love triangle! And that poor chap is really made used of by our not-OTP as a shield, a third leg, an errand boy and playmate.
After being “caught out” by In-ah on their cycling date, Sang-woo has no choice but to follow up on Soo-ji’s lie that Dae-young was with them. So Sang-woo calls Dae-young, using the promise to buy insurance from him as a carrot, to rush over for a threesome date. Ironically, Soo-ji appears to be more relaxed and herself when Dae-young is around. At least she gets to eat something (Sang-woo happens to have an iron stomach, he can go without food/water on the dates).
And the three get to play really cute games, which go like this:
While Dae-young harrumphs and sulks that he’s not their “manager” and they are not “Hallyu stars” who need to keep their relationship underwraps, he nevertheless gets unsettled when Soo-ji informs him that Sang-woo invited her for an overnight camping trip. Although Dae-young’s first response to their invitations to join them — not for the sake of joining, but as a form of cover — was an adamant “No”, he later stews on it and over-imagines things happening between the two. (he’s juz as kinky as Soo-ji) In the end, he turns up as the uninvited third leg on their hiking/camping trip next morning. And has to bear with seeing the two lovebirds cozying up to each other throughout the hike. (pwahaha)
Fret not though, his chance will come as Sang-woo is called back to office for an emergency meeting midway up the mountains. And here’s a preview of eps11/12, when the OTP tent falls on their head:
3. A little bit of spice and everything nice
Yes, the thriller…which is turning out to be a not-so-thrill thriller, since Eat 2 seems to have a bad, bad habit of pulling our legs. We shift our attention to the sidelines’ pairing of Joo-seung and Hye-rim. And Joo-seung, who until now, hasn’t been given MUCH of a backstory, continues to act in-and-out fishy. Last week, he invites Hye-rim to crash in with him, cos Hye-rim’s friend had family coming over to bunk in with her. So the girl arrives late in the night, and Joo-seung looks decidedly fishy, as he scopes the surroundings for spying eyes.
Then next we see, is Joo-seung lugging a large suitcase (re: enough to hide a chopped up body) away from the apartment. Even Happy/ Dog shies away from his murderous glare. And next morning, a news report says that a dismembered body of an unidentified young female has been found, abandoned in the woods. Hye-rim also goes missing from her part time job. Joo-seung is then seen buying large amounts of bleach, detergent and air fresheners…and he scrubs the toilet floor like there’s loads and loads of (blood?) stains. He also mutters under his breath that his place “reeks”…while stuffing Hye-rim’s clothes into a makeshift cupboard. When Granny Lee catches him doing that, he gives her his signature glare (cue flying virtual daggers):
Only to have Hye-rim turning up well and alive with hamburgers for Joo-seung the next second. Turns out that Joo-seung had to stay over at the nearby jijimbang (thus the large suitcase) since the container room is too cramped for them (and methinks he’s a little shy to be so close to his sex-goddess), and Hye-rim is away cos she had to go back to her family to attend a funeral. As for the washing and the over-buying of detergents — it’s cos Joo-seung feels his container room is too filthy, and wants to spring clean it specially for Hye-rim before she comes back from her family event. (aww, and he even sprays a huge bottle of freshener to get rid of the bachelor stink)
Turns out he isn’t such a bad kid afterall. His silly little wet dream about Hye-rim coming on to a totally shy and unresponsive him (and not a violent, abusive one) kinda proves he’s only a little hedgehog. Prickly above, but with a soft, silky underbelly. Eat 2 has been really slow in revealing his real identity — we guess he isn’t in his 30s as he claimed, since he knows next to nothing about military enlistment (a topic which Dae-young touched on last ep). And he has LOADS of money — insurance money from his deceased parents? Or? Is he a chaebol in hiding? And what’s with all the secretive furtiveness??
4. A tickling of bitterness to come
While everything is nice and rosy with our main and sub-OTPs, things are not so smooth for our other side characters: Taek-soo and In-ah. Alone, their backstories and their tribulations do not stand out. We know that Taek-soo’s family treat him like dirt, but it doesn’t stick in our mind enough to erase the impression of him as an annoying, drunk fly. In-ah too, gives us with an impression of her being a braggy airhead, who is always going on and on about her filthy rich Seoulite plastic surgeon husband who absolutely, absolutely dotes on her.
But when Eat 2 places them together on the same table, suddenly their combined loneliness hits you. Here are two people, who are decidedly unhappy. We should have been alerted to In-ah’s non-stop crowing about her hubby, as a sign that something isn’t right. And Soo-ji points it out for our benefit — she tells zombie Sang-woo that In-ah appears to be in Sejong-shi most weekends, instead of in Seoul with her hubby, as claimed. Placed in this light, suddenly In-ah’s boasts appear to be a form of self-validations. And yes, we get confirmation in ep10 that something is off with her and her hubby — he is avoiding her; perhaps he has another lover?
And Taek-soo, poor thing, is conned by his daughter to pay for Beast‘s concert (pfft…juz intro the daughter to Dae-young (Yoon Do-joon) already!) and later banned by his wife to come home to Seoul — on the pretext that she is lazy to cook. And the two of them are only going to be in Seoul for maybe a week or so? And both do not wish to see their father/husband? Cruel. No wonder Taek-soo resorts to clinging around Dae-young.
The two lonely hearts happen to meet over a dish of steak while sharing table in a restaurant, and sharing wistful looks at neighbouring tables with happy, complete families. In-ah longs for children, and I strongly suspect her husband refuses to have them (cos he doesn’t love her that much?), while Taek-soo longs for children + wife to be WITH him. I really hope these 2 sad cases resolve their familial issues soon.