Protect the Boss Episode 3 Recap

Have you heard murmurings here and there about Protect the Boss and how awesome it is right off the bat? I think it’s safe to announce now that this drama rocks so hard, it can put on its own concert at Madison Square Garden and I guarantee it’ll sell out. What are you waiting for? Get. On. This. Ride. Now. I laugh so hard at certain scenes in PTB I actually need to take a break before continuing with my recapping. The humor isn’t crass or potty, it’s just hysterical.

While this drama isn’t aiming for an OTP that will melt your brain, or cracky storytelling that will leave you chomping for more, it’s instead a cohesive drama where every single element is clicking perfectly with each other, creating an entertaining and touching package. It’s dangerous for me to love a drama this much from the very beginning, but I remain convinced that this is one drama that has the capability to go the entire way. So please don’t screw it up, SBS. M’kay?

Episode 3 recap:

In the middle of thanking Eun Seol for what she did today, Ji Heon spies the culprit shoes sitting right in Eun Seol’s shelf. His eyes widen while Eun Seol’s quick reflexes mean she dives for the shoes and shoves them under her body as she lays on the ground.

Ji Heon may be a loser at work, but he’s no clueless dummy. Eun Seol asks if he “saw it.” He says what? She’s like “oh, good, you didn’t see.” He tells her he saw it, and then proceeds to hold her foot up and examine it. He tosses her foot back down and says he saw it but didn’t see it clearly. He’s now doubting his own eyes, so to vindicate his eyes, he needs to see it again.

He orders her to turn around, but she won’t. She pleads that she was wrong, and could he please pretend he didn’t see it. He uses his foot to turn her around and happily crows that he’s finally found the owner of the shoe. LMAO FOREVER, this really is the line used by the prince when he put the shoe on Cinderella, no?

Eun Seol sits up and confesses that, yes, she is that bun head, okay! Ji Heon grabs her chin and forces her to look at him. He accuses her of planning this from the beginning and then becoming his secretary. She says it’s just a coincidence, and when she saw her shoe at his place, her heart almost stopped. He refuses to buy her story. She keeps begging him to believe her. He says how can he believe the words of bun head girl!

He tosses her aside, which is when Myung Ran comes home and shoves Ji Heon across the bed. Eun Seol quickly tells Myung Ran it’s a misunderstanding and the guy is her boss Cha Ji Heon. Myung Ran confirms he’s the “bastard Cha Ji Heon”, to which Myung Ran wants to hurt him even more. She picks him up and body slams him on the floor. AHAHAHAHA.

Ji Heon runs out of the apartment and Eun Seol chases after him asking if he’s okay. He says he’s not okay, it’s more than being hurt physically, his spirit is hurt. Eun Seol apologizes for not telling him, but she was just so scared. To make it up to him, she promises to work even harder as his secretary.

Ji Heon is genuinely upset that he almost trusted Eun Seol, thinking everything she did for him was out of her true intentions, but it turns out it was because she felt shame for her actions and was making it up to him. Eun Seol shakes her head and says it was all her true heart. There was some guilt involved, but she also wants her boss to do well and be a great secretary to him.

Ji Heon shuts her down, saying he doesn’t trust her anymore. In fact, because of her, he’s lost all trust in mankind and now his life is even darker and more hopeless. God, I love how dramatic he is. Eun Seol bows to him in apology and leaves. Back home, Eun Seol chides Myung Ran for getting physical with Ji Heon. Eun Seol worries about Ji Heon outside since it’s so dark. Myung Ran says he’s a grown man, but Eun Seol replies that he’s really just a kid and she worries about him.

Ji Heon is walking down the alley when suddenly the street lamps turn off. He freaks out and starts yelling out for Eun Seol. She comes running after him and ask if he’s okay. Ji Heon tries to pretend he doesn’t want her to follow him.

The Chairman sits and broods over slapping Ji Heon. He looks at his hand and puts it on the table, picking up a bottle of whiskey to smash his own hand. Which is when Grandma comes running over and grabs the bottle, and instead of taking it away, she slams it down for him. The Chairman screams while Grandma chides him for not changing his bad temper.

The Chairman listens and tells his mom that he really doesn’t understand – he’s the strongest and most handsome of the top ten chaebols in Korea. If he wants to do something, he can do it. So why can’t he fix his son? Why is his son so difficult and makes him so afraid of failing as a father. Oh dear Chairman, you are a good dad, your methods are just wrong right now.

Ji Heon tosses and turns on the floor, lifting his covers and freaking out because Myung Ran is just staring at him from the bed. She complains that the lights must be kept on because of “someone” so she can’t sleep. Ji Heon says he’s not friends with the dark, that is why. Eun Seol gestures to Myung Ran to just let it go and sleep. Ji Heon gets up and hits the whirling fan because it’s making so much noise. During the night, Myung Ran falls off the bed onto Ji Heon.

Ji Heon arrives at work along with Eun Seol, ducking behind her in case his dad is around. Moo Won walks up to them and asks why Ji Heon arrived at work dressed casually. Ji Heon challengingly replies that he slept at Eun Seol’s last night, what about it? Eun Seol says three people slept over, and someone slept between them. Moo Won smiles and says there must be a good reason.

Ji Heon stalks off while Moo Won asks Eun Seol how work is going. When Moo Won opens the elevator door and offers to let Eun Seol in first, Ji Heon barges in and shuts the door on them, even sticking his tongue out at Moo Won as the door is closing.

Eun Seol informs the Chairman nothing happened last night he needs to worry about. The Chairman doesn’t worry about that, since Ji Heon views women like rocks. He asks if Ji Heon has reflected and feels apologetic. Eun Seol thinks to how difficult it was to wake up Ji Heon this morning, replying that he probably has. The Chairman says that lions toughen up their cubs by pushing them off cliffs, so a tough method of pushing Ji Heon is needed. Eun Seol disagrees, saying that if a new lion wins over the previous lion and becomes the new pack leader, it will kill the cubs of the previous lion. The Chairman thinks this is so ruthless.

Ji Heon changes into a suit and Moo Won enters his office to inform him that Na Yoon has returned to Korea. Ji Heon says he doesn’t have time to remember her schedule, since he’s saddled with a problematic secretary. Moo Won tosses him a newspaper with Na Yoon on the cover and leaves. Ji Heon looks at the picture of Na Yoon and smiles that he really did forget.

Na Yoon sees a flower arrangement from Cha Ji Heon, and she flashes back to when she was leaving Korea to go abroad. She waited for Ji Heon at the airport but finally went through customs. Ji Heon arrives just as she is in line and he looks happy. Suddenly his phone rings and he answers. Whatever is said to him totally shocks him. He says “what, what did you say? What do you mean” Ji Heon drops the phone and falls to the ground as Na Yoon enters customs.

Eun Seol brings Ji Heon coffee while he is thinking about the past, and she runs up asking if he’s okay? Except she spills coffee all over his crotch area and he jumps up shrieking in pain. She waits outside the bathroom as he cleans his pants and blow dries it. When Ji Heon walks out, Eun Seol asks if he needs to go to the hospital, what if “its” burned.

Ji Heon chides her for being a troublemaker and the cause of all his woe. Eun Seol says she doesn’t mean to. Ji Heon informs her that if his dad found out who she really is, she’ll be OUT. She’ll be so out she’ll be tossed in the Pacific like a rock. He vows to tell his dad when the time is right. Eun Seol begs him to keep her secret, especially since she knows his secret.

Ji Heon stares at her, and Eun Seol pretends that the secret she is talking about is the underwear Ji Heon wears and his sleeping habits. Ji Heon runs off to tell his dad immediately. Two secretaries see this exchange and suddenly rumors are flying around the workplace about Eun Seol being the cause of the room salon incident.

Eun Seol goes to fix the copy machine and overhears another secretary using Japanese on the phone. She remarks that it’s so commendable and she wishes she could learn a foreign language. The other secretary mutters a vulgar name at Eun Seol, which she doesn’t hear, but Moo Won’s secretary overhears. She chides the secretary for using such vulgar language at work.

The secretaries are dragged outside and Moo Won’s secretary demands to know why they would deride Eun Seol. They say Eun Seol caused the room salon incident and they heard it directly from Ji Heon’s mouth. Eun Seol admits she caused it accidentally, but says her relationship with Ji Heon is purely professional. Moo Won’s secretary doesn’t want to hear the reasons why, since it’s caused their secretaries office to become the butt of all jokes at the company.

Eun Seol goes to see Ji Heon but he’s not in his office. Turns out he’s been kidnapped by Grandma, who is more than happy to leave him alone if he gives back everything he owns and starts his life from scratch. Eun Seol is being chastised and told to submit her resignation letter.

Eun Seol calls Ji Heon and asks if he really wants her to resign? He says yes. She asks him to at least do it properly. Ji Heon fires her over the phone and screams that she is OUT. Eun Seol takes a bus to the countryside and visits her dad, who is doing martial arts in the courtyard. He comes flying out when he hears a noise, only to see it’s Eun Seol. He wonders why she’s filled with the aura of danger and anger.

Father and daughter engage in a martial arts sparring session so that Eun Seol can let off her steam. Eun Seol screams out the names of the bitchy secretaries before attacking her dad with her fist. They move to sticks, and this time Eun Seol picks Cha Ji Heon as her imaginary target. She screams “today I am going to kill you!!!!” Dad finally runs around from her, reminding her that he’s her dad.

Ji Heon is tossing darts at Eun Seol’s cardboard cut out. He gets frustrated and lays down on his bed to sleep. He tosses and turns and thinks back to the night he spent at Eun Seol’s. Turns out Eun Seol got out of bed to try and help Ji Heon fall sleep. She shows him the sleeping position of babies in the womb, which helped her sleep when she first lost her mom.

She takes his hand to massage it since it will help him sleep as well. Ji Heon wonders if she can do everything. She says she’s the queen of part-time jobs. Eun Seol massages his hand until she falls asleep mid-massage and falls down on his hand. Instead of removing it, Ji Heon allows her to sleep on it.

Back in the present, Ji Heon imagines Eun Seol curled up in the infant pose on his bed. He screams, with a smile, “get lost”! But then he smiles says forget it, she can get lost later. Suddenly the Chairman asks Ji Heon what is going on, what does Ji Heon see, since Ji Heon is laying by himself in bed smiling like a moon calf. Ji Heon screams and quickly sits up, accusing his dad of scaring the crap out of him.

Eun Seol asks her dad if perhaps she should move here with him and live off the land. Dad asks if she knows why he moved out here, and Eun Seol reminds him it’s because their dojo went bankrupt and they lost all their money. Dad says he is here looking for enlightenment. Eun Seol asks if he found it? Dad stutters and confesses that perhaps he ought not to have run away back then.

The Chairman and Ji Heon are standing out in the yard under the full moon. The Chairman apologizes to Ji Heon for slapping him. OMFG, this does it, I Love You Awesome Chairman Daddy! Seriously, this is the first time a parent has ever apologized for bitch slapping their kid in a K-drama I’ve ever seen. Ji Heon says his dad was wrong, yes, but he was wrong first by talking back to his dad.

Ji Heon begs his dad not to use physical violence anymore, and his dad asks Ji Heon not to be so difficult anymore. Both agree that they will try to talk calmly with each other. The Chairman tells Ji Heon that he will not allow anyone to take away what rightfully belongs to Ji Heon. He wonders what happened, since Ji Heon wasn’t like this before.

Ji Heon says he was never that capable, and the Chairman agrees, but the old Ji Heon wasn’t so completely useless either. The Chairman pats Ji Heon on the back and tells him to look ahead and never look back. They look up and admire the beautiful moonlight, and the lovely wind, and the strong tree, and even the dog seems very lively and strong tonight.

Eun Seol arrives back at work with her attitude back. She walks into the office and immediately sees the two bitchy secretaries, who deride her as being shameless. Eun Seol drags them up to the roof and asks if they have looked down on her since the first day. They say yes, because she lowered the quality of their secretary office. When Eun Seol talks back, they try to strike her, which is when she grabs their arms and makes them kneel down before her. Eun Seol asks if going to a better college means they are better human beings than her? She reminds them both never to look down on anyone in the future. They agree and she lets them go.

Eun Seol goes to see Moo Won and gives him a goodbye present. He doesn’t want it, and tells her to go apologize to the Chairman and he’ll take care of the rest. Eun Seol asks why he’s so nice to her? He says this is nothing. Eun Seol calls him a good person, who believed in her, who came in with nothing. Eun Seol leaves and Moo Won wonders why he actually feels a hint of guilt (since he was planning on using Eun Seol).

The Chairman arrives at work and is about to be told about the room salon incident, but the Chairman cuts his secretary off and says to never mention that incident again. He wants to look forward from now on, as per his conversation with Ji Heon last night when both agreed to put this incident behind them. When the secretary tries to explain further, he’s threatened with a kick to the shin so he shuts up. He’s also told to delete the information from the bulletin boards. In the elevator, when another subordinate tries to talk about the room salon incident and mentions No Eun Seol, the Chairman screams at him to shut up and not mention this anymore.

Eun Seol calls the Chairman to confess the incident personally. The Chairman asks why even she is talking about this incident. He tells her to forget it. She asks if he really means it, for her to forget it and let it go. He says yes, and Eun Seol thanks him for being super duper awesome and so magnanimous. MWAHAHAHA, I love how this issue was dealt with! Turns out the Chairman was in the middle of doing community service as a crossing guard for students.

Eun Seol comes back to work and runs into her superior, who asks if because the Chairman wants to put this incident behind him, she can just be so flip about it. Ji Heon overhears Eun Seol getting dressed down and steps forward on her behalf, saying that even if Eun Seol were to be fired, he gets to do it because she’s his secretary. Guh, I love how he looks out for her even when he doesn’t want to.

Back in his office, Ji Heon angrily asks Eun Seol why she’s being mistreated by people at work. She returns it back to him, asking him to consider why this happened to her (i.e. he let slip she was the cause of the room salon incident). Eun Seol informs Ji Heon that she already tendered her resignation letter like he asked, which makes Ji Heon alarmed all of a sudden.

Moo Won tells the head of the secretary’s office that if the company fires someone they just hired, they could be sued. Moo Won takes the resignation letter from Eun Seol’s superior, who wonders if Eun Seol cast a spell on all the men around here. He goes to Ji Heon’s office and shows to the letter to Eun Seol, indicating he’s taken care of it like he promised her.

Ji Heon tries to get the letter back while Moo Won hilariously keeps moving it out of his reach. Finally Moo Won rips the letter in half and Eun Seol thanks him, and looks at Ji Heon and says thank you as well. Moo Won says he needs to thank Eun Seol, and shows her a picture on his phone of the present she gave him, saying that it’s exactly what he likes.

Ji Heon gets upset until he sits down with his own present from Eun Seol. He opens it to discover it’s a pair of boxers with a cartoon character. He gets angry and tosses it down. Moo Won meets with Na Yoon to discuss a commercial campaign. Na Yoon asks to speak with Moo Won privately, and wonders why she’s been back awhile and Ji Heon hasn’t contacted her? She asks if Moo Won told Ji Heon, and he teases her that if she gets hurt, he’ll wait for her.

When Moo Won heads back to the office, Na Yoon jumps into his car and says she wants to go with him. She’s changed her mind, she’ll make the first move to go see Ji Heon. The meeting starts and the Chairman and Grandma walk in, with the latter shielding her face from Eun Seol to keep her identity still a secret. Na Yoon walks up to Ji Heon’s office and tries to go in, but Eun Seol blocks her.

Eun Seol tells her to go sit down, and even Moo Won’s secretary confirms that the right to see the boss is decided by the boss or the boss’s personal secretary. Na Yoon notices Eun Seol’s skirt has a loose seam, to which Eun Seol simply takes a stapler and fixes it immediately, which totally offends Na Yoon’s sensibilities.

At the management meeting, it is announced that Ji Heon will become the successor for the company. Moo Won’s mom voices her concern that employees have no faith in Ji Heon’s abilities and it is widely known. The Chairman understands which is why he is mentioning this with only the people present at this meeting, and wants this to be kept confidential. He is simply letting everyone know that he is grooming Ji Heon to be the successor.

Moo Won prevents his mom from arguing any further. Ji Heon’s successor training is laid out, which involves visiting all the DN Group properties to raise his recognition. Moo Won finds Ji Heon after the meeting and congratulates him. Ji Heon tells Moo Won to be honest. Moo Won points out that Ji Heon is not interested in work whereas he is, so this choice is clearly not the best for the company.

The desire for nepotism will negatively impact the company, which is something the company will pay a price for. Ji Heon concedes he’s not interested in the company, but he won’t hand the company over to Moo Won, because he thinks Moo Won looks like someone who will evade taxes. LOL. Moo Won and Ji Heon proceed to engage in a bout of shoulder bumping as they walk away, which goes on for a good long time until Ji Heon runs into Na Yoon outside his office.

Moo Won’s mom is trying to reason with Grandma about how this decision is illogical. She refuses to get involved, saying that she has no authority anymore. The Chairman arrives and Grandma leaves, telling the two bickering in-laws to deal with it themselves.

The Chairman switches to banmal and calls Moo Won’s mom by name, reminding her that they were friends before she married his older brother. He asks why she would insult the son of her friend, who also happens to be her nephew. Moo Won’s mom asks why the Chairman ignores her Moo Won and treats Ji Heon a hundred, a thousand times better. The Chairman almost loses his temper while Moo Won’s mom goads him to hit her if he dares.

Ji Heon and Na Yoon sit down for coffee. She reveals that she knew he came to the airport that day, which was also the day…… which is where she stops talking. She’s trying to be serious but Ji Heon just fiddles with his coffee straw and refuses to talk with her. He says he’s bored because all she wants to talk about is the past. Na Yoon asks what she wants to do about their future? He says there is nothing between them.

She asks when he’ll stop holding a grudge, then she’ll come back. He tells her that he’s someone with no purpose in life. Na Yoon grips her coffee mug with a tight smile, telling him that the power of etiquette is the only thing keeping her from losing her temper right now. She promises to come back when he’s thought more. Na Yoon goes to the bathroom and sobs her guts down, with her mascara running down her face. She fixes herself up so that when she walks out, she’s perfectly fine and even looks her usual haughty self again. Oooh, she’s more interesting than I give her credit for. Now I’m totally curious about what went on between her and Ji Heon.

Moo Won’s mom is crying in the elevator with Moo Won and his secretary listening to her vow to avenge this mistreatment of her Moo Won. She wonders why he’s not comforting her, and he explains that crying is a good way to relieve stress. Moo Won’s mom runs into Na Yoon in the lobby. Na Yoon gives Moo Won a pointed look and asks to hitch a ride with him. Moo Won’s mom goes to visit Na Yoon’s mom and complains about the mistreatment of her Moo Won. Na Yoon’s mom agrees to talk with the Chairman, but first their kids marriage should be settled.

Ji Heon sits in the coffee shop long after Na Yoon has left. He thinks back to going on a date with her. She leans in to kiss him while he looks a little taken aback and unsure of himself. Eun Seol finds him sitting there. He gets up to leave but she points out an untouched dessert on the table. She licks her lips and worries it will go to waste. Ji Heon compliments her in a roundabout way and allows her to take the dessert.

Eun Seol sits in Ji Heon’s office and eats the dessert happily, remarking that she could eat this in the secretary’s kitchenette. Awwww, Mr. OCD lets her eat in his office. He reminds her not to drop any crumbs on the floor and she says yes. He asks her what she thinks about him becoming the Chairman someday. Does she think it’s mockworthy?

Eun Seol wonders why he would say that. If he became the Chairman one day, it’s not something she would make fun of him for. She hopes that Ji Heon won’t become the kind of Chairman that is dragged to the prosecutor’s office for investigations. Ji Heon asks Eun Seol what kind of Chairman is a good Chairman? Eun Seol says someone who pays well, and treats employees well. And gives plenty of scholarships to poor students like she used to be. There are lots she would suggest, but she’ll leave it at that for now. She asks if he wants to become the Chairman and Ji Heon says no and tells her to hurry up and eat.

The Chairman finishes his community service for another day, remarking that he actually feels rather proud of himself for doing such a good job. The secretary says he really admires the Chairman for his magnanimous attitude, even forgiving people for grave sins committed. The Chairman asks what grave sins he’s forgiven people for? Oh oh, Eun Seol!

Ji Heon is laying outside with his insanely pretty dog when the Chairman storms up and asks Ji Heon why he allowed Eun Seol to be his secretary if he knew she caused the room salon incident. Ji Heon asks if his dad didn’t already forgive Eun Seol. The Chairman says he forgave no such thing and tells Ji Heon to fire Eun Seol immediately. Ji Heon thought his dad liked Eun Seol.

The Chairman concedes he liked Eun Seol because she was kind of bumbling and cute, but there are rules in the company that needs to be followed. Ji Heon refuses to fire Eun Seol. The Chairman asks if Ji Heon sees Eun Seol as…..a woman! Ji Heon sputters that he would never, and the Chairman is relieved that his response appears genuine. The Chairman says Eun Seol has no skill and he will find the best secretary for Ji Heon.

Ji Heon says that he likes Eun Seol having faults. Because of her, he’s able to forget about his own shortcomings. The Chairman asks him what he means by that? Ji Heon changes the subject and goes to talk with his dog. The Chairman agrees to let Eun Seol stay, but then Ji Heon has to step forward and compensate the Chairman and the company for the losses incurred because of that incident. Ji Heon has to become a worthy successor of the company. Cool, I love the writing for this drama!

Ji Heon is very angry and says his dad is not playing fair. The Chairman says fine, and picks up the phone to have Eun Seol fired immediately. Ji Heon makes his dad hang up the phone and says he’ll do it. Ji Heon goes on his first site visit – an amusement park where attendance has been flat for the last 5 years. Eun Seol follows along taking notes. Ji Heon gets frustrated and wants to leave, but Eun Seol grabs his hand and says he’s tried to leave three times now, but he needs to finish and she’ll stay close beside him. He brushes her off and says this is all her fault.

Eun Seol and Ji Heon sit down and watch the people go by. Eun Seol remarks that it was her dream as a kid to come to places like this. She went once with her dad but didn’t get to stay long because the tickets were too expensive. Suddenly Eun Seol sees her dad and herself at the amusement park. Her dad says she can pick two rides because that is all they can afford. Her dad promises when he makes lots of money, he’ll but her an all-you-can-ride pass.

Back at the present, Ji Heon says this is a memory not worth remembering. Eun Seol disagrees, it’s one of her most cherished memories, but strangely, she can’t remember which two rides she ended up picking that day. Ji Heon derides her for having a faulty brain. Ji Heon suddenly puts up two fingers and tells her to pick two. He then makes it three, and then four, finally going back to three. He tells her to pick three rides. God, kill me know, why are they so insanely wonderful for each other.

Eun Seol smiles and asks what’s gotten into him. He says he wants her to check out the rides herself. Na Yoon sits with Moo Won’s mom and shares her idea about marketing. Moo Won arrives and his mom leaves, though everyone knows how obvious she is being by arranging for them to dine together. Moo Won and Na Yoon walk out to the amusement park.

Eun Soel picks the Viking Ship to ride and asks Ji Heon to ride with her. He’s obviously scared and says he doesn’t want to. She promises to sit where he can see her clearly, and he needs to stand where she can see him clearly. She asks the ride attendant to come over and puts Ji Heon’s hand in that guy’s hand, asking the ride attendant to please watch him carefully to make sure he’s alright. Ji Heon huffs that he’s not a kid.

Eun Seol gets on the ride while Ji Heon stands and watches her, his head cocking left and right following the movement of the ship as it swings back and forth. Eun Seol is happy and keeps waving to Ji Heon, who wonders why people pay to subject themselves to such torture. Na Yoon informs Moo Won that the adults want them to get married. Moo Won says that he wants to have a choice.

Suddenly Moo Won and Na Yoon see Ji Heon standing at the foot of the ride. They follow his line of vision and see that Ji Heon is staring at Eun Seol, who is on the ride. Ji Heon starts to crack a little smile at Eun Seol, which he tries to force himself to stop smiling, but he can’t help it and keeps smiling anyways.

Thoughts of Mine:

Yay, yet another drama where everyone knows everything. I’m sososo happy that Eun Seol being the chick who got Ji Heon beated up at the room salon was revealed so quickly. To everyone, even if the Chairman was kept in the dark for a tad longer. I would hate for that minor in the overall scheme of things incident to be made more important than needed and suddenly Eun Seol keeps repeating her attempts to keep it a secret from Ji Heon. What’s even better is how seamlessly it’s integrated in keeping the plot moving forward. Now the incident becomes the reason why Ji Heon agrees to become successor to the company. Just brilliant.

Similarly, the Cha family inner power struggle is also being performed out in the open. Grandma knows her eldest daughter-in-law wants Moo Won to succeed the family business, and it’s a legitimate position to hold because Moo Won’s father was the eldest son, and more important, Moo Won is actually competent. But that doesn’t mean Grandma isn’t biased, and continues to want to push Ji Heon to step up. Part of me thinks Grandma can tell Ji Heon is really messed up and hoping that forcing him into a position of great responsibility will help cure his issues and patch his shortcomings, whereas Moo Won is perfectly fine and needs no such push.

I love how the characters are written so that their personalities feel dramatically unique yet their motivations are really understandable. Every single Cha family member feels like a real person, with quirks but no ridiculous extremes (other than Ji Heon’s psychological condition). The Chairman loves his son so much, and you can see the love in his eyes and his actions even when he raises a hand to strike his son for disappointing him so much. The scene where he tried to hurt his own hand for hitting Ji Heon, and then grandma came by, took the bottle of whiskey, and then slammed it back down for him, that was priceless.

Three episodes in and the OTP feels rock solid, even though the “romantic” aspect of this drama isn’t what engages me the most at this juncture. What enchants me is the interactions, both personal and professional, between all the characters – the power plays and the quiet stripped down moments of personal connection. I want to see Ji Heon and Eun Seol become friends, who trust each other and rely on each other, before I even want to see any romantic movement between them. I can see they are already getting there, in the little gestures between them that each can see. Ji Heon needs someone to help him overcome his medical condition, Eun Seol needs to show that she’s deserving of respect for her job performance.


Protect the Boss Episode 3 Recap — 69 Comments

    • Same for me. I am often o business trips and cannot watch the episodes but with the recaps (I read them on the train or during the flights^^) I get the same feelings as if watching the films by myself. Thank you Koala!

  1. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR your recap!! I’ve been refreshing your site waiting for ep. 3 of PTB. LOVE LOVE LOVE this new sweet and corky =) can’t wait for tomorrow’s’re the best

  2. OMO I seriously LOVE this drama. The whole time I was watching this episode, I was marveling at the writing. There are writers who are good at creating engaging, interesting characters, and there are writers who write tightly-plotted, fast paced stories, but finding a writer that does both (and so well!) is a rarity. Who wrote this drama anyway? I want to write him/her a fan letter. And then I want to treat the casting director to dinner for casting Ji Sung and Choi Kang-hee. I’ve never seen either one of them in anything, to be honest, but they’re both blowing me away here, and they have great chemistry. Usually I’m impatient with the set-up episodes of a drama, but PTB is different – I was captivated from the first five minutes. I’m even happy that the writer hasn’t been throwing in heavy-handed “romantic moments” for our OTP; instead, they’re gradually coming to trust and care for each other.

    That’s another thing I love about this drama – the OTP’s relationship is give-and-take. Too often, chaebol-spunky-girl relationships are so one-sided (*cough Boys Before Flowers cough*), but PTB shows both parties expressing genuine concern (no matter how reluctant, on Ji-heon’s part), and both parties are owning up to it, to themselves if not everyone else. I love that. I honestly think that Ji-heon sees Eun-seol as his equal as a person, not just an object to be obsessed over (*cough JUN-PYO cough*) or simply as “his” underling. I also like that Eun-seol’s desire to have a job comes from her determination to take care of herself, not from some dire circumstances involving loan sharks and/or terminal illnesses, and that Ji-heon grudgingly respects her for that, and senses her sincerity.

    And how much do I LOVE the Cha family interactions? Finally, a writer who portrays so-called chaebols as normal people! When Chairman Daddy yelled “Mom!” after she smashed his hand, I knew I was in love with this writer. The normally cool, almost indifferent, and highly formal interactions of the “normal” kdrama chaebol family are markedly absent here, a fact that was reinforced by Chairman Daddy addressing his mother as “umma” (or “mom, mommy” instead of the more formal “uhmoni” (“mother”), and by the fact that he apologized (!) to Ji-heon for hitting him. This family obviously has its problems, but at least they’re fairly functional. I can’t wait to explore more of their story, which is highly unusual; usually I hate the family politics aspect of dramas like these. But PTB has made it abundantly clear that it is NOT going to be a drama like all the others, and I for one am totally psyched about that.

    • See, I’m so glad I got you curious enough to check this one out. I love the writing, so coherent, interesting, and thoughtful. Everyone is flawed yet relatable. Everyone is intelligent and actually uses their brains. Funny moments are genuinely funny, not forced mirth. I could go on and on. What a winner~

      • I love it when writers treat us and their characters like they/we have brains. I particularly dislike being condescended to, and plot devices like people almost-but-not-quite finding out important things is one of the ones I hate the most.

        And I really like that the writer is allowing Eun-seol and Ji-heon to develop respect and friendship before sending them off on the good ship JiSeol. I think dramas are too quick to forget those important steps before things get passionate and angsty.

  3. Yep, this is quickly becoming my drama crack. 🙂 Gosh, I love these two. Weird, wacky and wonderful!

    Thanks for the quick recap!

  4. thanks sistah! this is the first thing i did when i woke up… something to perk up my day 🙂

    wow, this show is getting to be really really good. i could just concur with you the way things are unfolding is so seamlessly integrated in the plot. it is so refreshing to watch a drama where secrets do not get until the ending to be revealed. i could only bet that by max episode 5 the reason for ji-heon’s condition will be revealed as well as his past with na yoon. speaking of na yoon, there seems to be more that what meets the eye. i will watch out for her.

    i love it too that both ji-heon and moo won is unconsciously drawn to eun sol. by the end of this drama, both guys will fall for eun sol. the cute was at the amusement park. awww, i could watch ji-sung all day with that smile on his face.

  5. Since I know just how much work goes into recapping an episode, I really salute you for putting it up so fast! It’s funny that with such interest in the show and it being a ratings winner barely anyone blogs about it, so your blog has become my favourite pit stop! Thanks for the hard work 🙂

    • LOL yeah this is like the best drama of present time but no big fansub group has taken it yet either:D and they dont seem to take it:D maybe withs2 would adopt it later:D LOL
      but also i heard that fighting fansubs may have taken it but not started subbing yet:D

      Thanks to Koala Unnie’s recaps, i could understand what is actually going on:D else i am watching without understanding over and over:D

      Btw the ratings are like top in Wed-Thurs section:D

      • The ratings are switched actually for the two ratings companies. PTB is #1 in TNG, and The Princess’s Man remains #1 in AGB.

        Both are exceptionally good dramas, and this should be a tight 1-2 race for the foreseeable future. I don’t see either drama pulling ahead significantly. If both can do 20% in ratings, then it’s win-win.

        Or it can be like Dong Yi and Giant back in Spring of 2010, both pulling in 30% at the same time against each other. Those were the days

      • If anyone looking for subs, i forgot to mention DSS since they are subbing also, sorry~~~ and Thankfully, DSS fighting!!!

  6. you know unnie, Ji Heon’s behaviors toward Eunseol is so natural that and the skinship when scolding her or tossing her is so cute that he is like a kindergarten student:D

    and i think this is one of the dramas that includes the angst between in-laws and company share wars etc. but you dont hate the antagonists either, i mean i even dont hate Muwon’s mom:D actually from the scenes of 2nd female in the amusement park i think she is also a fun character as an antagonist but i am always a little biased towards 2nd females who are ex’s 😀 LOL

    Thank you for the recap as always:D

  7. I love this little drama, but Im a little confuse with the Moo won character. It look like he doing things so his cousin Ji Heon can mess up. Then it looks like he really care for his cousin and is doing things to help him. To me it look like at one time they was close to each other or Moo won try to be close to Ji heon when they was small. I dont know, maybe somebody can help me.

    • Yeah, can’t figure him out either. I think Moo Won just absorbed his mum’s competitiveness with Ji Heon’s dad (and there’s oodles of bitterness in there). But maybe there’s a part of him that wants to be a good cousin to Ji Heon. But Ji Heon isn’t the sort to make things easy!

  8. This drama is so hilarious. I watched the first two episodes last night or rather early this morning and my sides were bursting from keeping myself from guffawing out loud enough to wake the neighbors. The episodes were that good. The interactions between the two leads is great at the onset, not like in other dramas that love to have a very slow build-up while the actors get familiar with each other. There was no awkwardness and stiffness, it’s like a breath of fresh air. It’s exhilarating, actually.

    I love the dysfunctional family relationship. I love grandma, and grudgingly, the dad because it is obvious that he loves his youngest son, although he keeps up a stern and (violent) front, maybe out of frustration. He does not seem to know about his son’s medical condition – agoraphobia.

    Eun Sol keeps Ji Heon grounded. She’s like his security blanket, and I believe she will be more so as the drama goes on.

    Thank you OCKoala for the wonderful recap, as always. This is something that can start a day right. Komawoyo!

    • I love the Cha family – the interactions between all of them, but most of all the father and son. Dad has a short fuse, and high expectations of his son. Unfortunately, Ji Heon keeps falling short of his standards. I get a feeling that Ji Heon thinks that he can never meet his father’s expectations so he just stopped trying. And perhaps his late brother is also a reason for this. As for his dad, sometimes I do want to bop him – he does love his son, but I think he is more in love with what his son SHOULD be instead of what he is right now. Ji Heon senses that and that’s why he keeps his disorder a secret from his dad. He probably is ashamed of the condition himself, and having his father even more dissapointed in him even more is something he can’t handle right now. Or maybe, ever.

  9. Thank you very much for recapping!
    I started watching it all by myself sitting in my car waiting for my daughter to come out from her music lesson.
    I was laughing so much and out loud, again, right from the start.

    His reaction to her spilling hot coffee on his crotch mid-aniety attack was one of the funniest things I have seen in a while (OK after watching Kang Woo cough up a quart of blood yesterday) He played it so convincingly – treating each emergency with equal importance -but only one at a time.
    Crotch heart crotch heart crotch heart. I guess that is the eternal struggle for men, eh?
    As far as their acting, they’re acting? We didn’t stumble upon a couple of people who were filmed unbeknownst to them? I marvel at how in synch these two could be so quickly and so perfectly. Maybe what we see is actually very technical and carefully storyboarded, choreographed and blocked before it is filmed, but it feels like genius.

    And when JiSung is intense, he is intense, man. When this OTP switches (later much much later – maybe episode 12?) to romance, it is gonna be hot. I am anticipating this greatly!

    Love it love it love it! I am going to look up and watch both of these actors’ shows next.

    • Yes it’s true that JiSung is intense and Choi Kang Hee also a good actress, but probably I can’t wait longer for their 1st kiss (even for just an accidental kiss, kekeke. And from the preview of ep4, looks like the love story will begin, YAY!!

      Thank you very much Ms. Koala, for the recap and for the same passion for PTB. I kinda sad coz there is not much blog or forum talk bout this drama, I hope all K-drama lovers will realize this “diamond” K-drama soon.

      PTB fighting!!

  10. You know, some of PTB reminds me of Secret Garden. The neuroses (talking to their imaginary friend, OCD, etc). It’s all good.

    Love Ji Heon and Eun Seol. Especially loved the “my feet don’t fit part” as I’ve never seen such a funny dislay of flat feet.

    Gotta love Eun Seol’s roommate too. She can fight as well (better?) than Eun Seol. Ji Heon better be scared of these awesome women.

  11. OMG!Just reading the recaps(thanx ockoala!!) makes me giggle, smile and I just want to hug myself!OMG!I’m just reading the recaps for now….I’ll keep on saving the raws and waiting for it to reach ep 8 before watching it..eheheh

  12. First off: I’m a new reader and commenter and wanted to thank Koala for the recaps of my new favorite drama!

    Back to the matter at hand. While I can definitely see the comparisons to Secret Garden, I find its plot structure to be closer to that of Goong. What makes this drama so great though is that it has added to the rather traditional machinations of Goong’s plot some wonderful characters (I’m looking at you, Ji Heon and Eun Seol, but maybe not so much Moo Won at this point) and more complex (read: better written) relationships.

    Anyways, PTB and Koala Fighting!

  13. I was a little hesitant to watch this drama: an evil boss, the poor secretary who’s struggling to make end meets, been there done that. But after a very boring day, and nothing else to do, I gave it a try and I’m glad I did. The drama it’s engaging and funny. I love the chemistry between the main actors. And while the story has been told before, this is being told in a different way. So far, it has been one of my favorite dramas of the year.

  14. Koala I am sooooo fricking happy that you chose to recap this drama. I love love love it. This is funny. This is how you do comedy. I love love love it. hahah Evn though im not in the mood o watch it, your writing makes me feel as if i am watching it. This is my post LTM drama. Soooo good. I love how everything is flowing. Though im kind of ticked off at Moo Won’s hidding agenda every once in a while, I really like him. Chairman daddy is fricking awesome!!!! Makes me miss Ah-Jung’s dad. I love awesome on screen dads.

  15. Love this drama. And it’s not because I’m Jae biased. Okay I am. But the drama is really good.

    And about Moo Won’s character, yes, he is competitive – but I think he’s not like his mom that wants the company. Moo Won wants the company because he thinks he deserves it, cause he is competent. And since Ji Heon doesn’t even like business and doesn’t take it seriously. But on the other hand, I think Moo Won does want Ji Heon to do well. I think when he made Ji Heon do that project infront of everyone was not a trap, but I think he wanted Ji Heon to face his illness and overcome it. I think Moo Won is a reasonable character, in my opinion, I think if Ji Heon really showed that he could run the entire business well, Moo Won would kindly let him be successor. But right now, Moo Won doesn’t see that in him.
    And I can see that there was prob a love triangle between JiHeon-NaYoon-MooWon before, where Na Yoon-JiHeon became an item. Now it’s the same thing with Eun Seol, but a little bit different. Cause Na Yoon is a character I find cocky and thinks she can get what she wants.

    That’s my thoughts right now. Can’t wait until tomorrow. PTB FIGHTING

    • I agree.. even with the first line lol (Jae-biased 🙂

      I like Moo Won. He is not outright evil …yet. The whole thing seems like sibling rivalry.. hopefully it doesn’t go all out in the evil direction once the love triangle happens. So far, I’m satisfied with Jae’s acting. On a side note, he looks slightly different in this ep..

      I feel this drama didn’t get as much hype (at least on the internet) because of the leads… but I totally think this is a great drama.

  16. Agree completely, about their friendship. This reminded me of that 9th Inning, 2 Outs show – where I was so invested in their friendship that I really almost didn’t want them to get together for fear of them destroying that support system that they so clearly needed.

    This show has been a total surprise for me – tuned in thinking it could be good, but I’m totally digging it for being so straightforward and refreshing… who knew I could like a drama so quickly where I don’t want to jump one of the men 🙂

  17. Getting to love this drama. There’s just one thing I dislike — Ji Sung’s hair style.
    Thanks for the recap. Looking forward to the next one till the drama ends.

    • I suspect they had to make his ridiculousness more believable in such a handsome man.

      If they let him loose with all his hotness, he would be too much like all the other chaebols out there. I hope before the end, we do see a more reasonably dressed (less holes in his shirts) mature man with gorgeous hair. Going to do a goole images now…

  18. HAHAHAHA! I LOLed reading the part where chairman daddy’s hand got double-slammed by the liquor bottle. I love that the grandma and Eun-seol are both strong and spunky women. Haven’t seen the drama but I like what I’m reading on the re-caps so far.

  19. I’ve just finished watching the raw. I was being patient not to watch the raw before reading your recap. I just loved loved Eun Seol more than the guys, it is very rare to love the heroine more, for me it only happened twice, MNIKSS and now PTB, but she just awesome and how much do I love that her dad is a martial art guru, omo, when I was in fifth grade I want Thio Sam Hong to be my dad. She’s probably the strongest heroine I found in kdrama land so far, both figuratively and literally. Btw in one scene when that pretty Jaejoong talk to Eun Seol when she handed over her resignation letter, I noticed that his face is darker than the usual. Me like it, more manly and still yummy, maybe he just forget his BB cream. Super excited about the preview! Yay! Koh mahp soom nee dah Ockoala.

    • “maybe he just forget his BB cream”

      Hahahaha,. Oh god, that was funny. I like Jaejoong here. His acting is simple and easy. He doesn’t force it, and it works. Apparently the costume director has to work overtime to dim his “brightness” whatever that means.

      • Jaejoong is naturally very pale so they are trying to darken his skin, that is what they mean.
        I agree with taripandita, he looks different (in a good way) in this episode. In the 1st one I think they took it too far cause he looked real yellowish-sick.

  20. I had to finish watching episodes 1 and 2 before read this…and my verdict??? Am totally hooked!!! I can’t help but giggle and laugh all throughout the 2 episodes and I hope this will continue onwards… I like the main leads and how the story is unfolding… Thank you madam K for recapping this…

  21. Thank you so much for the recap! I am just loving this drama so much. This is becoming my third crack drama this year. The first was 49 days. Then Greatest Love. And now Protect the Boss! I agree with you about wanting to see Eun Seol and Ji Heon become good friends before getting involved with each other romantically. I hope the funny doesn’t die out and get replaced by romantic angst once we get to the halfway point. Hopefully this drama can focus on how Eun Seol and Ji Heon grow into become a good Chairman and a good Chairman’s secretary.

    • My crack dramas of 2011 in order: Dream High, 49 Days, Best Love, City Hunter and now Protect the Boss.

      I love it, I love it, I love it! And I’m absolutely loving Ji Sung. I had never seen him in anything before and he’s killing it here. I can’t keep my eyes off him. And that angel smile? SIGH.

      Can’t wait for tomorrow’s episode! 😀

  22. My greatest thanks for the recaps. This is the only site where I can spazz about the drama. For a seemingly popular drama, PTB is lacking in the promotion department.

    I think one of the reasons that people shy away from the drama is because it’s a rom com with a plot that’s too common. And to add to that, an idol acts in it. (We all know how people perceive idols as actors). It’s a shame really.

    I still can’t get over the fact that these actors are really good. I’ve seen too many dramas where the acting is forced in rom coms and had to give up half way. Maybe it’s because they are older, hence more experience that makes them this good. I don’t know but whatever it is kudos to the PTB casts.

    I’m curious to what you think about Jaejoong’s acting though. Opinions from non-fans (without bias) would be much appreciated.

  23. AuntieK,
    Thank you so much for the recap. I have found my replacements for LTM( I find it funny that it’s a combo of two different shows that give me the warm feeling I got from LTM). YAY for Protect The Boss and Scent of a Woman, two great shows now if only SMW would get it’s act together then it truly would be KDrama bliss ( one can hope right).
    Well Recess is almost over playmates so make the most of it.
    Hugs&Kisses mates 🙂

  24. By the way Playmates,
    Lee Min Ho is in LA, so if you have the time and/or resources, you can do some City Hunter stalking. YAY
    *Dramabeans informed me of this joyous event 🙂

  25. I am sooo happy *dances the jiggy* !!! I have another ship to sail with my Captain and all my friends are with me! Yay!

    I love this show. My faith in Ji Sung has finally paid off. After seeing him in a number of dramas (he has never failed me yet), I couldn’t have imagined him doing comedy. But he is so endearingly funny as Ji Heon. I have not seen the Eun Sol character in any other drama but am liking her (strong character) so far. I agree about the thoughtful writing, the layered characters, and the sub plots, but most of all, I love how the show makes me feel. In the end, it’s all about that isn’t it – how the drama hooks you in, engages your senses and makes you feel.

  26. PTB is getting more and more interesting
    What I like the mostof this drama it’s seeing how all the characters shine by themself. I mean normally in a drama only the main actors have charming characters. But I’m surprised in PTB I like most of them apart from the 4 leads I also like CEO Cha, Grandma, the assistants and the rest cast. They really are doing a great job.
    Thank you Koala for writing so fast this RECAP
    For some reason I think so far this is one of the best dramas I ever see in my life. And I’m a drama addicted ^^

  27. Thank you Koala unnie for recapping this drama. It totally flew under my rader, but after reading your recap I was hooked. This drama feels like a 16 hour movie, it’s just so perfectly put together. And I love Every. Single. Thing in this drama, gahh it’s so perfect. *happy squeel*

    • I totally agree with you on the “feels like a movie.”

      Rather than having lot of filler: staring, or useless flashbacking, or shopping, etc, every scene is essential to the plot. There aren’t any tertiary characters that make me want to ff them out off my screen.

      Mostly, I think, it is the calibre of the acting. JiSung is man of a gazillion quick change expressions. He goes from silly to heartbroken in milleseconds. CKH prolly doesn’t get the credit she deserves because she makes it look so easy. The tough girl with the heart of gold- we have seen this about a million times. She is doing that without making it a caricature, and ES is already one of my favorite characters.

      I have to say I die every time JH calls “Noh Eun Seol!” He doesn’t realize it yet, but each utterance of her name is taking up space in his heart. Pretty soon, NES will have filled it to overflow!

  28. Hello
    well this chapter 3
    the characters very well and evolving me amused much watching
    Thank you for the transcription


  29. I am so glad you’re recapping this series. Dramabeans didn’t recap this(yet). Jisung is sooo good!!!
    Keep up the good work. Off to read now!

  30. I was watching ep 3 on vicki at 2am this morning, and I was afraid I was going to wake up Mr.Handsome because I kept laughing intermittently at P.T.B’s hysterically humorous moments.

    I obviously don’t have the kdrama “rich lady” laugh-more like explosive, snorting, super loud laugh. Based on the comments, and your opening recap, I wasn’t the only one laughingly enjoying this wonderful ep! Ha. 🙂

    Loved this ep, and absolutely love everything about Protect The Boss, and I love coming to the Playground to read your recaps, commentary, and reading all the wonderful peeps giving input and commenting .

  31. love this drama, cozz it’s unpredictable and predictable the same time. every episode bring some funny and amusing scene and i can’t wait to watch it next time.
    love your recap cozz you always bring something i miss while watching and i need to watch again and think about that piece later.
    love the first ost made by Jae… lovely and surprisingly mature, could listening all night
    strange thing – before watching episode i read you recap and i search for moments you mentioned, you need to write more more more 🙂

  32. OMG in soompi thread it is stated as the ratings for today’s episode is about 18% 😀 this drama sure deserves it!!!!!

  33. Great job on the recap. I agree, this drama is all kinds of awesome. It’s so well-cast, and so refreshingly written. I’ve only seen 3 eposodes so far, and I’m already getting nervous about suffering from PTB withdrawal syndrome.

    Thanks, Koala!

  34. I’m also worried about liking this drama so much already, but oh wells. It’s so nice to enjoy a drama for the substance, instead of coasting by on the pretty and/or crazy (cough…Spy Myung Wol…cough)

  35. Oh Papa Chairman! I love you! You are my new hero! LOL, Forgive and forget, awesome, but using that same hand to push your over grown kid, not only to admit that he likes her, that she get him out of his comfort zone, and make him accept the fact that he is the HEIR to the throne! LOL Freaking lurve it! Papa Chairman you are awesome!!

    Cousin-from-Hell, I love you, I hate you! I’m such a mess! Every time you smile and bite your lips, I just wanna …. (I cant say it, we are PG) LOL , hug you and kiss you and hug you …. Mhahahahahahaha!!!

    Over grown kid- what can I say about you? A Prince Charming, with the innocence of a kid, with an ocd that almost make you unbearable, the tenderness of a kitten, in a twisted package! Common you look like a lunatic, dress like a bum, and lived your life like you don’t give a damn! Until God intervene, and send you this Kun Fu Woman! LOL Po get out of there, you are so yesterday!! LOL I love the fact that Kid is helping Kung Fu to tame her anger, and Kung Fu is helping Kid to grow up and being not only a capable man, a great president! Freaking LURVE IT!!

    X – why did you scape from the pits of hell? You smell like trouble!! There is a bio hazard warning all over you! Seriously get the hell out of there! And please be faithful in your next relationship, no body likes a lying, cheating, crawling scum as a lover!! Jeez gets some How to be faithful 101! Seriously you need it!!

  36. I find Moo Won character to be very stilted. Maybe that’s the character. Ji Heon, you can’t help but love!

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