Netflix‘s Business Proposal stood out not only for its talented cast, lighthearted storyline, and comedic timing, but also because of the healthy relationships of the couples in the show. Unlike many other K-Dramas, problems were fixed in a straightforward or mature way.
This romantic comedy features chaebol Kang Tae Mu (Ahn Hyo Seop) and the employee he fake-dates, Shin Ha Ri (Kim Se Jeong also known as Kim Sejeong). Their best friends, Young Seo (Seol In Ah) and Sung Hoon (Kim Min Gue), also had their own major relationship storyline.
The final episode showed several signs that they were both in happy and healthy relationships. Learn more about this below!
1. Dating With Purpose
First up, Tae Mu proved time and again that he was in it for the long haul with Ha Ri. As soon as he met her parents, he explained that he wanted to date her seriously. Breaking up down the road was never an option—he wanted to date her with marriage in mind.
I fell in love with her as soon as I saw her. In my eyes, she is prettiest in the world. I met many beautiful girls but this is the first time I met a girl like her. I laugh and have so much fun when I’m with her…so if you two would approve, I would like to date Ha Ri with marriage in mind.
— Kang Tae Mu
2. Respecting Each Other’s Decisions
Later on, Tae Mu informed Ha Ri that he had to leave for the United States to tend to his grandfather’s health. He asked her to move with him so they wouldn’t be separated.
I’m going to take him to the States but I want you to be by my side. I’m not telling you to quit your job. There’s that program that we have where we send researchers overseas.
— Kang Tae Mu
Unfortunately, Ha Ri decided that it wasn’t the best choice for them at the moment. She knew that moving together would create rumors that would increase the stress Tae Mu was under, not to mention that his grandfather’s health should be his priority.
No. I’m sure I’d get it though. But if I do that, there will be rumors about it at the company. I don’t care about other people either. I just don’t want this situation to hurt you anymore. [Your grandfather] is all the more reason I can’t go with you. Chairman Kang’s health is the most important thing right now. He still doesn’t approve of me so how can I go with you?
— Shin Ha Ri
Instead of arguing with her further, he respected her decision. The two were ready to start a long distance relationship despite the difficulties ahead.
3. Communicating Well
To make their relationship work, Tae Mu and Ha Ri frequently called each other during the year that they were apart.
When Ha Ri saw an article alluding to Tae Mu being in a relationship with another girl in the United States, she used her accumulated vacation leaves to attempt to travel across the world to see him.
Luckily, he was already on his way to her and he apologized right away for not replying to her messages. He only learned about the scandal after his plane touched down in South Korea, and he was firm that it was all a lie. They were able to make up without keeping any ill feelings lingering.
4. Making A Stand
As for Young Seo and Sung Hoon, their biggest plot twist of Episode 12 was when her dad secretly called Sung Hoon to threaten him to break up with her, a stark contrast to his approval from the previous day.
Young Seo knew that enough was enough and handed in her resignation letter from her father’s company despite his offer to promote her to a directorial position. She made a decision once and for all to cut herself off from his toxic ways for the sake of her relationship with Sung Hoon and her own well-being.
You don’t think of me as your daughter. I’m just something you own, aren’t I? Actually, I think I can [make a name for myself without you]. And I’ll prove it—that I’ll be perfectly fine on my own without using your name.
— Young Seo
Sung Hoon stood by her side silently and comfortingly as she broke down in his arms at home.
5. Supporting With Respect
After Young Seo cut ties with her father, she planned to support herself by opening her own company using her severance pay and taking out loans. Sung Hoon stepped forward to show her his bank book with ₩1.70 billion KRW (about $1.40 million USD) in it, telling her to use it for her start-up.
After Young Seo refused his offer to help financially, Sung Hoon clarified that he was not giving a dole out but he would be her investor instead, showing that he believed in her abilities as a future business woman.
Young Seo: It’s a lot of money and couples shouldn’t be lending each other money.
Sung Hoon: That’s not what I’m doing. I’ll be the first person to invest in your company. You know I’m picky, right? Bring me a proper business plan first. If I’m happy with it, I’ll invest in full.
Young Seo thanked him sweetly for his support.
6. Keeping The Flame Alive
Finally, even after a time skip of one year, the couples were just as enamored with each other—if not more—as when they first fell in love. While one couple expressed their love for each other as if it were the first time…
…the other started a new chapter in their lives by finally getting engaged. Tae Mu asked for Ha Ri’s hand in marriage right after coming back from the United States, saying, “You know I hate wasting my time, right? I can’t be apart from you any longer, so let’s get married.”
It was a rightfully happy ending for Ha Ri, Tae Mu, Young Seo, and Sung Hoon—pairings with some of the healthiest relationships in K-Drama.
To see how viewers reacted to the final episode, check out the article below: