I decided to pick up Emergency Couple a few days ago, having heard about its release after finishing Answer Me 1994. I was looking forward to it before it started airing, because it stars Choi Jin Hyuk and Song Ji Hyo. Two gorgeous people, an interesting rom-com premise. Count me in!
The opening scene had our couple, Chang Min and Jin Hee dressed in wedding attire, fleeing from men in suits. They manage to shake off their pursuers, and arrive at a church. The priest knows Chang Min, but is not too pleased at having his service disrupted. However, he does end up marrying them off, and Jin Hee sheds tears of joy as Chang Min slips the wedding ring onto her finger.
We then cut to the couple at separate sessions with a shrink, each complaining about the other. We learn that Chang Min’s family had objected to their marriage and had stopped supporting him. He had to drop out of med school and is now a pharmaceutical salesman. Jin Hee is a housewife, but she gets panic attacks when her mother-in-law is brought up.
Chang Min has to work hard to make ends meet, and tries to call in a favour with his med school hoobae to drum up some sales. He ends up getting pulled into an after-work session with the head of the hospital, who is an iron lady. He gets treated no more than a toy boy, and it gets worse when it rains on his way home. He comes home to a non-sympathetic Jin Hee, who is lying down after having a panic attack when her mother-in-law rang earlier.
There is so much resentment between the two of them, and they have an epic fight. It is hilariously petty and OTT. They end up standing in the ruins of what used to be their apartment looking at each other.
6 years later, they meet again (after getting divorced) at a mutual friend’s wedding, where he is the wedding singer and she the pianist. They can’t stand the sight of each other, and they end up bickering in the car park because her car was in the way of his.
She is annoyed, and drinks away her fury with her pals. She asks for the strongest drink from the bartender and downs it in one shot, then passes out.
Meanwhile, Chang Min attends a family dinner with his mum (who was his stepmother in Heirs, how funny!). Mum’s sisters and brother are all doctors and she cannot keep up with their conversation till Chang Min arrives. She clearly dotes on him. Despite Chang Min only being an intern, she clearly hopes that her brother will consider him as his successor to run the hospital. Early days, woman. Stern uncle welcomes him into the fold as a doctor, saying that it’s long overdue.
After passing out, Jin Hee is taken to the ER, where she is treated by Gook Chun Soo. She had fits and puked a bit on his hand, but he’s calm and collected as he removes something from her throat and intubates her. When she comes to, he removes the tube and examines her again, only to have her slap him and swear at him (half unconscious).
Next morning, Chun Soo overhears Chang Min and his pal Young Kyu as Chang Min tries to hit on a girl while pretending to be a resident. Chun Soo is annoyed by Chang Min’s smugness, especially when he gets the girl’s phone number. Their little lie doesn’t work out that well when the girl, Ah Reum turns out to be an intern too. She’s in the same group along with a pair of newlyweds who are from the same med school as Chang Min and Young Kyu.
Chang Min and the rest of his group are assigned to the ER for the first 3 months of their rotation, much to their dismay. The ER is of course, the worst department to work in, with Chun Soo having the reputation of a devil. Chun Soo meets the interns, and informs them that if one of them fails, then the rest will too. Chang Min’s objection is met with a firm ‘my way or the highway’ response from Chun Soo.
Chun Soo tells them the three things he hates most – people who have their feet rooted to the ground, people who pretend to know more than they actually do, and people who are late. He goes on to add that interns are the lowest on the food chain here in the ER (much like Bailey from Grey’s Anatomy). Jin Hee stirs, and in the midst of her panicking over being late for work, catches Chun Soo talking about ER and interns. Chun Soo starts shouting out names to take attendance, and he shouts Jin Hee’s name. Jin Hee realises that she’s at the hospital where she’s supposed to work at, then falls off the bed trying to get up. She stumbles out and mumbles that she was the first to arrive, then apologises. Everyone looks at her in amazement. And Chang Min’s jaw drops to see her. She makes eye contact with him and they both freeze.
So my thoughts from the episode was that it was a bit lacking – I got the plot but it seemed lacking in heart. It might be the OTT delivery from both leads that’s putting me off a little. I can understand why their marriage didn’t last, but with very little ground to go on why they fell for each other in the first place, my heart just doesn’t hurt along with them. That said, it’s early days yet, and I hope it improves as it goes along. I don’t mind petty bickering, but I want some actual cute too!