Recap: “To the Beautiful You” Episode 2
The cute continues. This drama is an easy watch. There is nothing mind-blowing or new but it’s a familiar story competently told. A nice drama to end a hard day with.
Dr. Jang demands to know why a girl is in a boys school. Jae-hee vehemently denies it. She has no idea why he thinks she is a girl but she is definitely a boy!
Tae-joon sits silently by the high jump bar in the empty gym. Manager Jang tries to comfort him. It was just too soon after the injury for him to try jumping again. Tae-joon tells her that he’s okay. He never expected to do sports all his life anyway. He doesn’t care if he can never jump again. Manager Jang is shocked by his words.
Eun-gyul finds Jae-hee outside. He tells her that Tae-joon didn’t the jump. It seems his injury didn’t heal completely. Jae-hee runs off to her room to look for Tae-joon but she doesn’t find him there.
Tae-joon is walking outside. His father’s car rolls up next to him. Geun-wook gets out and slaps Tae-joon. Tae-joon kept saying he didn’t want to jump while he was undergoing rehab. Did he fail the high jump on purpose in front of everyone?
Tae-joon wonders why his dad is suddenly acting like he cares. Geun-wook pleads: “Don’t give up on yourself to rebel against me.” Tae-joon says it’s his own decision.
Back in his room, Tae-joon asks Jae-hee if she is not leaving. Jae-hee pleads: she won’t make a sound so please let her stay! Tae-joon pushes her away. Jae-hee winces and Tae-joon wonders why she is so wimpy. To her back he says, “Don’t make any noise above 40 decibels.” It’s the sound level allowed in libraries. Jae-hee can stay since it’s the school’s rule but he is the owner of the room; she is nothing.
Tae-joon dreams. He and his dad are at his mother’s grave. Tae-joon places his high jump gold medal on her jar of ashes.
Jae-hee sees Tae-joon frowning in his sleep. She fixes his blanket and Tae-joon unconsciously grabs her hand. He thinks she is his mom.
The next morning Tae-joon wakes up to see Jae-hee sleeping next to his bed, still holding his hand. What the? He tosses Jae-hee’s hand away.
Jae-hee is the bathroom washing her face when Eun-gyul comes in to pee. His own bathroom is occupied by Hyun-jae. Then Seung-ri comes into to poop because his toilet bidet is broken. Jae-hee now has seen waaay too much of both of them.
At Manager Jang’s office, entertainment reporter Yang Seo Yoon (Ahn Hae-kyung) wants to know what happened to Tae-joon yesterday. Didn’t Manager Jang say that Tae-joon was all better. Manager Jang avoids her eyes. Nope, Tae-joon still needs time to heal.
Back in Dorm 2, dorm leader Seung-ri is rounding up the boys. The sports competition is coming up and Dorm 2 better win. He wants Tae-joon is take part as the high jump representative. Tae-joon declines. This stuff is too babyish. Seung-ri is offended.
The dorm leaders meet: Dorm 1’s Jo Young-man, Dorm 2’s Ha Seung-ri, and Dorm 3’s Na Chul-soo. Following tradition, the winner of the sports competition will get to use the middle cafeteria. Dorm 2, last year’s winner is using it now. Losers use the cafeteria annex, run by a cranky old lunch lady. Each dorm leader vows to win this year.
Each leader denies that his dorm is training for the sports competition. Liar, liar, all your pants on fire.
Eun-gyul and Jae-hee are eating together. Jae-hee spots Dr. Jang in the cafeteria. She tries desperately to hide herself. Jong-min sees Eun-gyul and Jae-hee together and gets jealous.
Min Hyun-jae is practicing his high jump with the school’s gym teacher, Baek Gwang-min (Kang Kyung-joon). Tae-joon peers in to watch. He is approached by Reporter Yang.
Reporter Yang describes Min Hyun-jae as Tae-joon’s rival. He’s record is only two centimeters shorter than Tae-joon’s. And he is the hard-working type, while Tae-joon is the genius. (Ah, that age old rivalry between the hard-workers and the natural geniuses. Hate those geniuses!)
Reporter Yang reminds Tae-joon that she is his fan. Tae-joon describes her as a stalker. She wants to know if he is not jumping on purpose or if he can’t jump.
Seol Han-na is practicing rhythmic gymnastics. She later eats lunch with the other athletes. All the girls try to pretend that their salads are pizzas. It doesn’t work.
Han-na worries about Tae-joon. She wants to give Tae-joon a gift to lift his spirits. She calls her manager oppa to arrange for him to pick her up.
Surprise! Han-na’s gift was herself. (Oh the vanity.) Unfortunately, she surprises Jae-hee instead. Han-na introduces herself as Tae-joon’s girlfriend. She hopes Jae-hee won’t write about this on the web. Jae-hee doesn’t know why she would; who would care?
Han-na is offended. She is a famous sports star, the “nation’s fairy.” She even does a standing split to demonstrate. (Ha!) Tae-joon comes in and annoyed, struggles to take Han-na out of the dorm.
The next day, dorm 2 is practicing the 100-meter run. Jae-hee races Jong-min. He once again trips her. (Seriously, it’s not even funny anymore, you brat!). Jae-hee sprains her ankle and goes to the clinic to get some medicine. She tries to do this secretly in order to avoid Dr. Jang but he enters the clinic with Tae-joon. Jae-hee quickly hides herself behind a curtain. Unfortunately, Dr. Jang sees her shoes but he continues to talk to Tae-joon.
Dr. Jang asks if Tae-joon really felt pain yesterday. Tae-joon can be truthful with him. But Tae-joon just confirms that he felt the pain.
Dr. Jang speculates that Tae-joon is experiencing “Yips Syndrome,” a disorder experienced by some athletes in which they suddenly cannot play, mostly likely due to mental stress. Unfortunately, there is no cure. Dr. Jang tells Tae-joon to not be too disappointed; he’s just speculating. But Tae-joon doesn’t feel disappointed. He didn’t even have any expectations. Tae-joon just thanks Dr. Jang and leaves the room.
Once, Tae-joon is gone, Dr. Jang calls Jae-hee out from her hiding place.
Eun-gyul is playing soccer but he is able to take a phone call while he is trapping the ball. His coach yells at him but Eun-gyul shoots a goal. It’s hard to stay mad at a guy that good.
Jae-hee want to know what’s wrong wtih Tae-joon. But Dr. Jang wants to know what Jae-hee is doing here. They keep talking past each other until Dr. Jang picks up the phone to call the teacher’s office to report her. He stops when he hears her say she came because of Tae-joon. She is in debt to him so she can’t leave like this. She needs to help Tae-joon. She needs to see him jump. She will do anything to see him fly again. Even cut off her own wings. She can’t go back to being a girl!
Dr. Jang tells her to return….to her room. He will think about it. But she should know that all secrets come out sooner or later.
Jae-hee comes into the dorm room and tells Tae-joon that she overheard everything in the clinic. She tells him to not give up. She will help him. Tae-joon tells her forget about it. He was getting tired of high jump anyway.
Jae-hee tells him to stop lying. She saw his face when he flew. How can someone who knows how to fly stay grounded on land? Tae-joon wants her to leave the room. She went over 40 decibels.
Jae-hee is despondently walking outside. Eun-gyul, seeing her like this, calls over Jae-hee. “Softy, come follow me.”
Eun-gyul takes Jae-hee to the soccer field. He promises to grant a wish if she can take the ball away from him. She doesn’t want to do this but he persists, showing off his soccer skills. Isn’t Jae-hee quitting too easily? Jae-hee is riled up. Okay! She’s up for the challenge. Unfortunately, she only ends up knocking herself and Eun-gyul down.
Eun-gyul takes a picture of them together. He uploads it to his blog with the caption, “Friendship is like trapping played at eleven o’clock at night. The ball wasn’t the only thing that was passed over to you. There was also friendship.”
Eun-gyul looks over the picture and then at Jae-hee. His heart starts to beat louder and Jae-hee’s face glows in his eyes. Uh oh. Here starts the confusion!
The next day, Reporter Yang approaches Jae-hee because she is Tae-joon’s roommate. She want Jae-hee to help her. With what, we don’t know yet.
Hyun-jae is in the clinic to bring a folder to Dr. Jang but he is not there. Hyun-jae notices Tae-joon’s medical file on Dr. Jang’s desk. He secretly takes pictures of it.
Manager Jang is on the phone with Reporter Yang. Reporter Yang has just published a story on Tae-joon, speculating that he may have Yips Syndrome.. Manager Jang is mad. How the heck did Yang get Tae-joon’s medical records? (Well, this K-dramaland, where any Joe off the street can get anyone’s medical records just like that!)
Tae-joon’s dad, Geun-wook, also sees the news article. He tells his secretary to call Tae-joon home soon.
Tae-joon is talking to Manager Jang about the news. He is okay. He assures her that it wasn’t Dr. Jang. Suddenly, he remembers finding Reporter Yang’s business card on the floor near Jae-hee’s clothes. Uh-oh! Is Jae-hee the leak?
Tae-joon yells at Jae-hee. “Is that why you begged to stay? So you can sell information about me to reporters?” Jae-hee has no idea what he is talking about so Tae-joon shows her the article. She denies having anything to do with it but Tae-joon doesn’t believe her.
It’s the day of the 34th annual Genie High School Sports competition!
Yay, sports montage! All the students play and cheer hard. Tae-joon is still cold towards Jae-hee. Eun-gyul’s gaze keeps going toward Jae-hee. At the end of the montage, Dorm 1 and 2 are tied with two wins each. Dorm 3 has won none.
The last race is the marathon. Tae-joon is supposed to run but he is nowhere to be found. The other students wonder if the rumors of “Yips Syndrome” is true. Seung-ri wants Hyun-jae to take Tae-joon’s place but he feigns an injur. Jae-hee volunteers to run instead.
Dorm 3 leader plans to win the marathon no matter what. Uh-oh, I smell evil plans brewing.
Dorm 3 athletes succeed in knocking off all the water for the other runners, switching players, and tripping Jae-hee who is currently running in first place. She falls.
Tae-joon finally shows up at the bleachers. Eun-gyul tells him that Jae-hee is running in his place.
It’s the final stretch, back on the track. We see a Dorm 3 member running in first but soon comes Jae-hee behind him. Yay!
Jae-hee spurts and runs past Dorm 3 athlete to take the lead position. But she’s sprained her ankle from the trip and she falls. She struggles to get and after she remembers Tae-joon’s words, she gets up with determination. “’Miracle’ is only another name for hard-work.”
Jae-hee comes in first place. All her dorm members cheer. Even Tae-joon is happy for her but he leaves instead of running to her like the others.
Seung-ri yells at Eun-gyul while spraying medicine on Jae-hee’s ankle: “I told you not to get hurt!” With a soft smile he says, “Good job.”
Jae-hee chases after Tae-joon and catches up. She calls out to him. “I won. I remembered what you said.”
Jae-hee falls in pain. Tae-joon helps her up. Jae-hee tells him one more time, “I didn’t have anything to do with the news report. Please believe me.”
The dorms have a celebratory party. (Ha! EXO-K sings “Mama.”) The dorm 2 boys surround Jae-hee but she looks around for Tae-joon. When Eun-gyul calls her attention to thank her, Jae-hee says she finally feels like she is really a student here. (Aww!) Unfortunately, Eun-gyul gets all nervous again when Jae-hee smiles and hurriedly escapes.
Eun-gyul runs into a dolled-up Han-na looking for Tae-joon. He yells at her for using “banmal” (informal language). When Han-na runs off offended, Eun-gyul worries: He got angry at a girl while his heart shook for a boy! Eun-gyul tries to reclaim his sexuality by trying to flirt with other women. Unfortunately, his dancing skill only chases them away.
Tae-joon is sulking around after reading the newspaper article about him again and he grabs a drink from the bar. At the same time, Jae-hee is looking for Tae-joon, Eun-gyul is looking for Jae-hee, and Han-na is looking for Tae-joon. (We all know where this is going. Dun dun dun!)
Back at the bar, Teacher Baek stops Jong-min and Seung-ri from drinking the beverage that Tae-joon just drank. It’s alcohol! Seung-ri warns Jong-min to keep the alchohol away from Tae-joon. When he drinks alcohol, Tae-joon kisses the first persons he sees.
Bam! The first person that Tae-joon runs into is Jae-hee. He corners her and leans in. Fireworks explode! It’s a kiss! Already! It’s only the second episode! Yes!
Preview for Episode 3:
Tae-joon: If you’re going to say again that you’re going to you’re going to help me fly, then don’t. I’ve quit high jump completely.
Jae-hee: Does he not remember what happened yesterday at all?
Eun-gyul: Did you get “attacked” by that guy?
Jae-hee: I don’t like him. I’m telling you, it’s not like that.
Eun-gyul: The answer will come out when we take a shower naked, man-to-man.
Han-na: Goo Jae-hee. You keep nagging me at the back of my mind.
Jae-hee: I can’t share the room with you.
This drama is like a harmless puppy. So cute. I want to pet it for being a good boy. Which reminds me…No Sang-chu this episode?! But he’s the star of this drama!
The main characters (Tae-joon, Jae-hee, and Eun-gyul) feel organic and real to me, despite the unrealistic situation. I think we can attribute this to the general tone of the drama; the laughs are there but they are not played up at the expanse of earnestness of our characters. I think Dr. Jang and Teacher Baek are the most manga-like characters in this drama yet. They both speak with this weird accent and drawl that are a bit jarring when everyone else is so normal.
The production staff took a chance casting newbies as the students and I admit to cringing at first when I heard the news. Oh no! We’ll either get over-acting or wooden-statues. Now, I appreciate this choice. The characters feel young and awkward like they are supposed to at that age. There are flashes of over-acting here and there but I think the director is doing a good job keeping the acting in reign. The acting suits the overall tone of the drama.
At least to me. Am I the only one that thinks so?