K-Drama Rewind: Cheese in the Trap

Did you ever feel so disappointed with a drama’s ending that you felt robbed? You’ve invested so much time and ~feelings~ that despite the drama’s rise and fall, you would still wish it well and hoped for a decent ending. If you haven’t felt this ever, you are one lucky fan because that’s the case with Cheese in the Trap.

Cheese in the Trap was a much-hyped 2016 tvN adaptation of the popular webtoon of the same name starring Park Hae-jin, Kim Go-eun, Seo Kang-joon, and Lee Sung-kyung. It featured an original ending since the webtoon had not been completed at the time of filming. This week’s Grumpy Flashback edition will delve into the drama – the good, the bad, and the painful.

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Roll, surge, and swell

The drama revolved around the complicated relationships of college students, particularly its main leads Hong Seol (Kim Go-eun) and her sunbae, Yoo Jung (Park Hae-jin). The first few episodes focused on Seol’s suspicion as to why Jung was suddenly nice to her and even asked her on a date. They began their awkward and complicated relationship, and Seol slowly uncovered the real personality of the mysterious (yet sweet) Jung.

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Grumpy tidbit: Hong Seol was first offered to Bae Suzy but she declined.

My favorite part of this drama adaptation was the Baek siblings, In-ho (Seo Kang-joon) and In-ha (Lee Sung-kyung), who were Jung’s childhood friends. Jung’s father took care of them after they ran away from their abusive aunt.

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In-ha led a lavish lifestyle and was determined to marry Jung. I love In-ha so much I consider her my spirit animal.

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In-ho was a piano whiz kid who hated and blamed Yoo Jung for his major hand injury. After unfortunately engaging himself with gangsters, he moved from one place to another. He became friends with Seol and worked for her parents’ restaurant.

Source: Pinterest

The drama also focused on the deep misunderstanding between Jung and In-ho. I felt really bad for these two as they spent most of their lives hating on each other, but in reality, they were just two kids who longed for the love and acceptance of a friend/brother.

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Grumpy tidbit: Kim Go-eun initially turned down the role of Hong Seol due to scheduling conflict but eventually confirmed after Lee Yoon-Jung PD repeatedly asked her to accept the role. This was also her first ever drama after being known a film actress.


My favorite Yoo Jung is the Yoo Jung who hugged Seol after receiving a simple gift from her. So romantic!

Remember when Yoo Jung was always the proud boyfie who was not afraid to reveal their relationship to the world?


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Cheese in the Trap is also on my list of dramas with the most annoying characters ever! I remember myself cheering for In-ha when she grabbed Min-soo’s hair when she mistakenly recognized her as Yoo-jung’s girlfriend. Like go girl! That’s what she get for copying Seol and stealing her lion charm!

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Our college life is populated by a bunch of losers who take advantage of our generosity and try to suck as much as possible from us, and just like Yoo Jung, sometimes we get fed up by these freeloaders and just teach them a lesson.


Also belonging to these bunch of losers was Seol’s notorious stalker Oh Young-gon:

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Seol’s best friend Jang Bo-ra (Park Min-ji) and her lackey Kwon Eun-taek (Nam Joo-hyuk) were also one of the highlights of the drama! I just love their chemistry 🙂

Cheese 1

A love that was not meant to be

Baek In-ho was a serial case of second lead syndrome. He lies at the top of the second lead syndrome pyramid, along with other notorious third wave second leads, Jungpal (Reply 1988) and Shin-hyuk (She Was Pretty). In fact, their chemistry was so strong there was even an outcry during that time after the show was slowly focusing on In-ho more than Jung.

Credit: Dramafever

A second shot at redemption

We have a new Cheese in the Trap adaptation in the works! The upcoming movie version with Park Hae-jin reprising his role as Yoo Jung and Oh Yeon-seo as the new Hong Seol has now announced its release date. I admit I still need to adjust and disregard the drama version entirely so that I won’t compare. Seo Kang-joon and Lee Sung-kyung were just amazing as the Baek siblings, so I think I’ll really have a hard time accepting the new In-ho and In-ha.

Here’s the trailer of the Cheese in the Trap movie:

I sincerely hope the movie will give us the quality ending that we deserved. In case you haven’t watched the drama version yet, it had an open ending. I understand that the drama premiered an original ending, but there was no satisfaction in the finale’s execution. Overall, watching Cheese was still a fun journey, but given another chance, I wouldn’t want to go to that route again. Can we just remember the cute and forget the disappointment?

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[All photos and GIFs used in this blog belong to tvN]



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