Another exceedingly dull hour amounts to very little in this tedious weekly Netflix series.
This One Spring Night Episode 3 recap contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
The savvy among you might have noticed that I never got around to covering the second episode of One Spring Night, but fear not — virtually nothing happened in it anyway. Sadly, that’s also a description that fits One Spring Night Episode 3, and I get the sense perhaps the show in its entirety. In many ways, One Spring Night is about nothing interesting ever happening to anyone.
The big news from last week is that Yu Ji-ho (Hae-In Jung) has a young son whose mother isn’t around; the kid’s cute and likes dinosaurs, but he also mistakes Lee Jeong-in (Ji-min Han) for his mother during an encounter at the library, so Ji-ho panics and scolds him for it, which doesn’t go down well. Confused about what would encourage that kind of thinking in his son, who has never asked about his mother before, Ji-ho feels a bit sad and anxious about the matter, which is high drama as far as One Spring Night Episode 3 is concerned.
Speaking of high drama, Jeong-in’s friend discovers that Ji-ho lives on the third floor of her building and that Jeong-in denied any knowledge of that, which suggests to her that Jeong-in is in “deep trouble”. It’s vaguely comical how utterly appalled everyone is at the idea of a woman being attracted to another man, even if she is blatantly unhappy with the one she’s with.
And that brings me to Gi-seok, who runs into Ji-ho at the pharmacy while looking for medication to ease stress. I feel for this guy. He seems genuinely well-meaning, he’s just a clueless idiot because his father is deeply unpleasant and his girlfriend very clearly can’t stand being around him. He’s not a bad guy, he’s just a product of woefully outdated Korean cultural norms, which is really what One Spring Night Episode 3 seems to care about beyond its central romance.
It isn’t just the male attitude to women and marriage, either; Gi-seok genuinely pities Ji-ho for being a single father, considering him a failure and very sure of the fact that he must have done something to drive the mother away; women in this world, after all, are duty-bound to be faithful to their men. It’s actually faintly depressing, but not quite as depressing as One Spring Night itself, which remains completely dramatically inert and hopelessly dull.
I’m sure there are people out there who enjoy the show’s patient naturalism and complete absence of bombast and flair, but I really, really don’t; the circular arguments between the same people about the same things are starting to drive me spare, and every time the show’s theme music kicks in as Jeong-in and Ji-ho go about their separate business I want to floss my ears with sandpaper. It’s a nightmare that I sincerely hope ends soon before I give up on the idea of romance altogether.
Jonathon is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has been Senior Editor and Chief Critic of the outlet since 2017.