Saturday, September 1, 2012

K-Drama Review: To The Beautiful You, Episodes 5-6

Read Episode reviews for:

To The Beautiful You--Episodes 1-2
To The Beautiful You--Episodes 3-4
To The Beautiful You--Episodes 5-6
To The Beautiful You--Episodes 7-8
To The Beautiful You--Episodes 9-10
To The Beautiful You--Episodes 11-12
To The Beautiful You--Episodes 13-14
To The Beautiful You--Episodes 15-16

Contains Spoilers for Episodes 5-6

As episode 5 begins, Taejoon sits sadly by himself in his spacious and empty dorm room, getting thoughtful now that he's kicked Jaehee out.

Never Brood Alone, My Friend.

Taejoon sees a video letter on...Jaehee's laptop?...where she's asking an American coach to give Taejoon one more chance to fly. A flashback shows Jaehee's high school days in America, where she felt horrible about her Korean heritage because the students bullied her and said mean things to her about smelling like garlic. And now we finally get a decent reason for Jaehee liking Taejoon! When she was at her lowest and ready to quit school, she saw Taejoon on TV and decided to work hard like he did, and turn her life around. She joined the track team and found her place in life.

Aww, now that's quite sweet and not nearly so cockamamie a reason for supporting Taejoon as a mere celebrity crush. Taejoon now has a flashback montage of every nice/creepy thing Jaehee ever did for him or said about him, and his heart is moved. He runs down the dorm hallway to bring her back. As Jaehee walks down the school steps in the dead of night, he begs her to stay, looking like he's about to cry.

Jaeehee's Getting Misty-Eyed As Well...As Are We All.

This scene should not matter one whit because we all saw it coming, but it still charms because it's innocent and precious.

Cue the training montage! The next day, Taejoon gets back into the swing of things and works as hard as he's ever worked to get back in shape for jumping.

"Gonna Fly Nowwwww..."

Taejoon's rival, who I've just now discovered is named Hyunjae (too many names to learn!), takes offense at Taejoon's use of the gym, so Taejoon has to try to get back into the athletic club just so he can train properly.

Hanna sneaks on campus and lets herself into Taejoon's dorm room with no invitation. I guess I'm just going to have to keep repeating my "don't be freaked out" mantra regarding this show's tendency to portray characters who have no concept of privacy or personal space.

Whoops, Jaehee's Oppa, Daniel, is back!

And He's Not About to Let His Kid Sister Stay at This Wacky School.

Jaehee begs him to let her remain, and School Doctor talks Oppa out of making her leave (over shots of soju--the only way that real men decide anything in K-dramas).

Jaehee goes back to her dorm with a cake for Taejoon to celebrate his return to sports, and the celebration devolves into a cuuuute cake fight. Taejoon is nice to Jaehee at school, too, joking with her and carrying heavy things for her. Things haven't gotten romantic yet, and their friendship is really blossoming.

Jaehee finally gets to hinting around to her best bud Eungyul that she's a girl.

Which He Should've Already Known. Seriously.

But Eungyul doesn't catch on.

We run into trouble when Jaehee thinks Taejoon has called her out to meet him by the pool at night, but Eungyul and Taejoon soon discover the deception and rush to the pool. Jaehee creeps further into the dark room, not realizing that water + night + no witnesses = a bad thing.

Has Clearly Never Seen Any Slasher Films.

She gets pushed off the high dive by an unseen hand. Both Eungyul and Taejoon dive in to save her. Taejoon has to perform CPR, natch, and it successfully saves her, also natch. Because television still hasn't heard that CPR is only effective 30% of the time when administered in hospitals, and about 3% of the time outside of hospitals. Oy.

Jaehee recovers and grows closer to Taejoon after the experience, but her time at school is limited--her Oppa soon arrives to take her away. Again. I'm not terribly interested in the "Jaehee's leaving for reals!" subplots. If she ever actually left for a while and we got to feel how her absence affected her friends, then it would matter. As it is, it's an empty plot-threat.

No, Leaving For Five Minutes Then Returning, Does Not Count. 

Taejoon's at his big high jumping meet and it looks like he's going to fail, but when Jaehee shows up to cheer him on, it gives him some much-needed confidence and he performs well. Aw, and he was even wearing the lucky shoelaces Jaehee gave him.

I just now realized that Jaehee still doesn't know that Taejoon knows she's a girl. Come on, honey. You didn't figure it out when he started treating you like a breakable pretty princess instead of the bane of his existence?

At Least Someone Is Amused At Her Lack of a Clue.

The school festival is coming up, and in addition to serving coffee in a class cafe, Jaehee is drafted into the Miss Genie competition where the guys dress as girls. I haven't seen Coffee Prince, but I'm pretty sure that the school festival cafe scene is a parody of it.

Eungyul Could Only Find Half a Vest, For Some Reason.

The nighttime portion of the festival consists of live performances; one from a pretty awesome taekwondo exhibition team, one musical show that I think is a guest appearance by LEDapple (their song "Time's Up" is sung, at least), and then we cut to some guys getting ready for the Miss Genie pageant. It's hilarious how ugly they are. Jaehee's dress is stolen by the mean guy who pushed her off the high dive (because she humiliated in a fight on the first day of school). But Taejoon stops the guy, confronts him, and gets the dress back for Jaehee. Crisis averted.

Jaehee steps on stage for the pageant and sings a song in her girl-voice that couldn't be any girlier, and Eungyul still doesn't know her identity--neither does anyone in the auditorium besides the Doctor, who knew already. I...I give up on these people.

Sulli's So Pretty!

After the pageant, Jaehee trips and Taejoon catches her. This semi-romantic moment closes our sixth episode. And I'm noticing that people, Jaehee in particular, trip a lot in this show.


Things I Loved:

1. Taejoon Getting Out of His Slump. Really, you can only watch a hero mope and make half-hearted efforts for so long before you lose interest in his goals entirely, so it was great that Taejoon rallied himself and got back in the game. He apologized to everyone he had let down, too, it was a really nice comeback.

There is Hope For You Yet, Taejoonie.


1. Hanna Sneaking In. We dove right into Looney Tunes cartoon territory when Hanna kept doing flips and gymnastic moves to sneak into Taejoon's dorm. It's hard to take any portion of a show seriously when we get scenes like this.

Defies the Laws of Physics.

Episode Evaluations:  In spite of myself, I find so many of the scenes precious. I don't really care about the characters or their trials and tribulations, but I still get the warm-fuzzies when they are happy. However, I do miss seeing some genuine comedy, which is only present in the dorm rivalry scenes. This show is shorter on funny that it ought to be.

These episodes weren't what you'd call interesting, bu I'm still hanging in there and still watching. Everybody else sticking to the show, mainly just for loyalty's sake?


  1. Although I haven't commented in the past, I've been enjoying your Kdrama reviews for a while. I just had to pipe up here, though: whatever you're doing right now, you must drop it immediately and go watch Coffee Prince. I swear it will change your life forever, it's so good ;)

    1. Thanks Amanda! I've had some friends "gently" nudging me to watch Coffee Prince for a few months now. I'll be taking the plunge pretty soon, I'm sure--Yoon Eun Hye AND Gong Yoo are a little too much to resist. :-)

  2. Yeah, I'm pretty much watching this just because at this point. You summed it up pretty well in your last couple sentences: I don't find it all that interesting, but am still watching for no particular reason. All I've got to say is that the only truly sane character so far is her brother, Daniel. (Super cute, too! ;p ) Oh, and I also thought the vest/suspenders-thingie was weird. From the moment it appeared, I kept trying to figure out what exactly it actually was. My conclusion is vesty-suspenders meant to make a fashion statement!

    1. *nods* I'm still with this show because--I don't even know. I just am.

      Asymmetrical vest-suspenders must be the new trend for baristas. O_O