Drama Recaps
School 2013: Episode 4
by | December 11, 2012 | 181 Comments

I’m so invested in this show. It hits all the right buttons for me—it’s earnest and heartfelt, angsty in a relatable, not overly dramatic way, and tonally darker than you’d expect for a high school drama. The storytelling holds back in a really smart way too, making us curious about each character and taking its time to reveal them in bits and pieces, which if you’re anything like me, has you hooked.


“Beautiful Days” – J-min (School 2013 OST) [ Download ]

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The air is thick with tension, as new transfer student Heung-soo turns to Nam-soon with a sneer, “President?” Nam-soon looks even more pained than usual, if that’s even possible.

I get the sense that he knew the you-are-class-president-my-ass derision was coming, but also that he’d get that reaction from Heung-soo if he were just sitting there breathing. I don’t know what went on between these two before, but this ain’t no you-stole-my-lunch-money kind of past.

Then the resident class bully Jung-ho saunters in and recognizes Heung-soo from the other day and starts to push him around. Should I be relieved for Nam-soon that Jung-ho has a new target for the time being? Nam-soon looks nervous about that too though.

Meanwhile, Se-chan is being questioned about his illegal tutoring business, which he says is already being taken care of. But they mean something else, something specific to a student here – they accuse him of privately tutoring Ha-kyung, against the rules.

He explains that no one student could afford his rates, and Ha-kyung was just a member of his last tutoring class at the academy. He asks who reported him, and the investigators refuse to disclose that information. Se-chan pointedly asks if Ha-kyung doesn’t deserve the same privacy.

But it’s all out in the open, and Ha-kyung sits nervously in the teachers’ lounge, waiting to be questioned. In-jae tells her that Se-chan took care of it so she won’t have to answer any questions, and tries to console her. But Ha-kyung is as closed-off as ever, and leaves without a word.

The mean girls gossip about her in the bathroom, and Kang-joo rushes to her defense. But Ha-kyung bristles coldly at the whole group, and snipes at Kang-joo to worry about herself. Gee, and you wonder why you don’t have any friends?

Kang-joo walks back to class in a pissy mood, only to run into Heung-soo again. This time she challenges him to kick her shoe today, and he laughs as he kicks and trips her on his way out.

She shakes her fist, “I swear I’ll kick you someday!” I hope it’s his heart to the curb after he develops an embarrassing crush on you. It’s only fair.

It turns out Uhmforce is the math teacher (and here I thought he was just the scary enforcer guy, ajumma perm notwithstanding) and he makes a point of calling Jung-ho and Heung-soo up to the board to solve some equations.

He’s scary enough that Jung-ho reluctantly goes up, but Heung-soo doesn’t budge. Uhmforce asks if he wants to be expelled from yet another school, and Heung-soo says he came to this school determined to graduate, “So don’t mess with me.” Dayum.

The whole class is stunned, and now Jung-ho looks like the dutiful little student, compared to the new badass in town.

The other boys chatter on about it from PE to lunch, calling Heung-soo “hyungnim” (because he’s actually older since he squatted a year). One of them says he heard a rumor that he was some legendary jjang [meaning best, a title only the coolest baddest badass gets], not just at his school, but basically top dog in a whole city.

In-jae watches as Uhmforce talks to Heung-soo, who for all his defiance actually answers the teacher respectfully. They agree not to mess with each other, meaning Heung-soo doesn’t cause any trouble, and Uhmforce stays out of his hair.

After Heung-soo leaves, Uhmforce smiles to know that he really does want to graduate. In-jae doesn’t look satisfied at the graduate-quietly plan, or maybe she doesn’t quite believe that he won’t cause trouble?

Heung-soo saunters into the cafeteria, and all eyes turn toward him. Nam-soon silently hands Heung-soo his lunch and walks out. Hm, an automatic here’s-my-lunch-before-you-bully me tactic, or a peace offering?

Heung-soo takes it with a snide laugh and sits down to eat alone. But Jung-ho and his lackeys come up to challenge him to a fight, itching to settle the new pecking order. It’s kind of like watching the nature channel, where the dogs also have detention and math homework.

Jung-ho turns down Heung-soo’s offer to just continue being the jjang—’cause you know, what’s the point in being the alpha dog if you didn’t beat your bloody way to the top? So Heung-soo suggests they take care of things outside of school and away from teachers.

Jung-ho makes a point of pouring his leftover lunch onto Heung-soo’s tray before he goes, but he doesn’t make it very far before Heung-soo stops him. He throws all the trays on the floor at Jung-ho’s feet with a loud clang. “Watch where you’re going.” He walks out.

Kang-joo runs after Nam-soon to nag him about not eating his lunch (aw she’s cute) and spends the rest of her day half mad at Ha-kyung and half trying to make up with her. But Ha-kyung doesn’t make it easy, acting just as cold and condescending to her as she is to everyone else. Are you two even friends?

In-jae and Se-chan have another bickering match over how best to use their individual meetings with their students, and Se-chan tells her not to get so deeply invested in the kids. “Is school supposed to take responsibility for their lives?”

In-jae: “It might not be able to take responsibility for them, but it should be a place they can lean on.” Se-chan: “Do you want to lean on me?” She gapes that he’s crazy. “See, you don’t like me, so why would you want to lean on me? Kids—they don’t like school.”

Back in class, Nam-soon silently puts a textbook on Heung-soo’s desk. I am seriously dying of curiosity here. Heung-soo decides to test him, and suggests Nam-soon go buy him a snack too while he’s at it, and Nam-soon heads out.

The class buzzes—is Nam-soon falling in line? He didn’t even once cave to Jung-ho, but is he choosing to become Heung-soo’s lap dog?

Nam-soon comes back to class and puts the snack on Heung-soo’s desk without a word. Curiously, Heung-soo doesn’t look especially pleased about it.

The class murmurs that Nam-soon is being pathetic to gain some protection, but clearly something else is going on here that only the two boys understand.

In any case, it’s doubly annoying to Jung-ho, who hears belatedly that the defiant Nam-soon is now falling in line with Heung-soo.

Poor In-jae struggles as always to get the kids’ attention, and Se-chan can infuriatingly get them to shut up with one soft-spoken warning from the back of the room. She says they’ll start their one-on-one meetings with the students who didn’t turn in their About Me homework, which is pretty much Jung-ho, his lackeys, and Nam-soon.

Jung-ho and his friends walk out right in front of her, and Se-chan just shakes his head at her wasted effort, screaming down the hall after kids who don’t give a crap.

But thankfully good ol’ Teacher Jo is there to play bad cop, and stops them in the hallway—would they like to clean the gym, or go back to their homeroom teacher? Hee. Back they go.

Ha-kyung gathers her things at the end of the day, only to find all her books scrawled with insults. Kang-joo tells her that she hopes she gets into Seoul University like she wants, even though it won’t erase where she came from. Ha-kyung stews.

Nam-soon follows Heung-soo out of school, and once they’re outside Heung-soo finally turns to face him, balking at Nam-soon acting like they’re friends or something. “Do you want to go, or shall I?”

He says they can’t possibly go to the same school. “Every time I see you I want to hit you. You should be the one to go. Running away is your specialty.” Oooh that’s telling.

They’re interrupted by Kang-joo, who only sees that Nam-soon is carrying Heung-soo’s bag like a puppy, and basically tells him not to live that way. Ha. She grabs the bag and throws it back at Heung-soo, and bravely tells him not to mess with anyone in their class. I like her.

Nam-soon tries to tell her that’s not what this is, to no avail.

In-jae tells Jung-ho that it might be hard for him to graduate like this, and asks if he even wants to graduate. No answer. She asks if he has any problems at home, and he scoffs, “What, if I do, what’ll you do about it?”

This time she doesn’t have an answer. He walks out, and she chases after him, saying that she knows he’s acting tough to hide his insecurities. He turns that around on her and says she’s doing the same—acting tough to hide her weaknesses. Eee, they’re both right on that score.

He adds that he’s not acting tough, “I AM tough,” and tells her she’s the weakest in their whole class, so why would anyone listen to her if they’re not afraid of her? Se-chan sneaks up behind him and asks what about him then?

Se-chan says he’s tougher so by his reasoning, Jung-ho needs to listen to him. So far so good… but then he tells Jung-ho to just stop coming to school altogether because he doesn’t do anyone any good and he’s not wanted here.

Oy. One’s got the right intentions but the wrong delivery, and the other’s got the authority but the wrong message. In-jae shoos him out of there before Se-chan does any more damage, and SLAMS the door, leaving Se-chan blubbering, “What’d I do?” Ha.

In-jae looks through Jung-ho’s record and sees a note from a past teacher, stating that it’s likely Jung-ho’s father beats him pretty badly. Yeah, I don’t think it takes a genius to figure that much. She watches him go with a sigh.

That night, Ha-kyung stands outside her tutoring academy, unable to face the other students. She takes out her phone to call Kang-joo, but then she can’t bring herself to do that either.

The next morning, Nam-soon stands outside the school gate, as Heung-soo walks up behind him, “You going in?” That’s… not a friendly invitation, is it?

Heung-soo turns to leave, but Nam-soon says he’ll be the one to go, and walks away.

Ha-kyung arrives outside school on the bus, but can’t bring herself to face them either, and doesn’t get off. But before the bus leaves, Nam-soon gets on, and they awkwardly make eye contact on the empty bus.

They sit on opposite sides, each staring out the window with a sigh.

In-jae texts them both wondering where they are, and worries most about Jung-ho who’s running low on absences before expulsion. She asks Se-chan what he’s going to do about him, suggesting that as the teacher, he has to apologize first.

She asks how he can hurt a student like that, and he in turn asks if protecting them is somehow going to give them fewer scars in life or a happy ending. He tells her that if she’s not going to take responsibility for Jung-ho till the end, she shouldn’t start because she’ll get hurt too.

In-jae: “It’s not that you don’t want to take responsibility. You’re scared, aren’t you?” That seems to niggle at his conscience. Or he has something in his eye. We have yet to find evidence that he has a conscience.

In-jae tries to find out what’s going on in her class from the other students, but no one will tell her why Ha-kyung and Nam-soon aren’t here.

They ride the bus all the way around until it circles back to school, and this time Nam-soon gets up. He tries to get Ha-kyung to get off with him, but she’s not one to easily give in. He finally convinces her to get off at the next stop as a favor to him since he doesn’t want to go it alone. Aw.

They trek back to school and he asks if it was really worth it just to go to that stupid academy. He asks why she went in the first place, framing his face with his hand, “For the flower boys?” Hee.

She snarks that there aren’t any at their school, that’s for sure. The real reason is that their school isn’t going to help her get into Seoul U, and he wonders what the big friggin’ deal is about going there.

She says it’s where everyone else in her family went, with a sigh, like it’s more of a curse than anything. Ah, okay, that helps put it into perspective, if she’s from some crazy high-pressure family.

She asks if Nam-soon is really that scared of the new kid. He nods. She scoffs, wondering what Heung-soo is that’s got Nam-soon on the ropes.

“We were friends. Really good friends… once.”

They reach the outer wall and Ha-kyung refuses to go in together, so Nam-soon leaps the wall first. As he walks onto the field, he sighs that school sure is far today.

He walks into class, and Heung-soo notes his presence with silent disapproval. It’s so adorable that Young-woo comes up to say that he was worried, and Kang-joo nags him about not bringing Ha-kyung in with him.

Heung-soo steps out for a cigarette, and Nam-soon comes up and snatches it away, pointing up at the cameras. Heung-soo wearily tells him to go before he gets hit, and Nam-soon doesn’t budge, “Just hit me.”

Heung-soo sneers, “You’re a good actor. You have everyone fooled. Do they not even know your real age? They think they’re friends with you.”

He figures Nam-soon is rattled, worried that he might blow his cover and tell everyone about their past. Nam-soon says it doesn’t matter. But that’s not what his face says.

Heung-soo: “Really? If they knew what kind of bastard you really are, would they still act that way?” He says they’ll see, lording their secret, whatever it is, over Nam-soon’s nervous head.

Kang-joo finds Ha-kyung still standing outside the school walls. She asks why she’s not coming in, and Ha-kyung finally admits that it’s because she’s sorry, and she thought Kang-joo would hate her. Aw, so you really are friends.

Kang-joo leaps down, tearing her skirt in the process, and Ha-kyung’s worry overcomes their awkward tension. Kang-joo throws her arm around her, saying she missed her nagging friend, and they laugh.

Kang-joo goes with her to the tutoring academy, and demands that her friend get a refund. Ha. It’s adorable—she not only gets Ha-kyung’s money back, but manages to make the academy feel like they lost the opportunity to advertise Ha-kyung’s success story later, and they walk out arm in arm, with their heads held high.

Ha-kyung uses the money to buy them new school uniforms, and they run back giggling. They’re so cute.

In-jae asks Nam-soon why he still hasn’t turned in his About Me questionnaire, and he says he doesn’t have anything to say. She asks about an irregularity on his record—he didn’t graduate from junior high and entered high school with an exam, and she asks him why.

Whatever happened with Heung-soo must’ve happened then, because he clams up about it instantly. Thankfully for him, In-jae gets a call from Jung-ho’s dad, so he’s off the hook for now.

The other teachers worry about her heading to see Jung-ho’s dad alone, since he’s famous for throwing violent fits even when he visits school. Yeesh. It looks like Se-chan has a conscience after all, because he offers to go with her.

Ha-kyung and Kang-joo just play hooky the rest of the day, and Kang-joo asks how Nam-soon knew about her going to that academy, wondering why he’d be at a place like that. Ha-kyung asks in turn why she’s so curious about Nam-soon… which makes ME worried that they both might end up liking him.

Nam-soon gets a call that night… from Jung-ho? He says he’s with Heung-soo, and Nam-soon panics, asking where they are. Uh-ohs.

In-jae finds Jung-ho’s house, but there’s no answer at the door. She insists on waiting a while longer, and Se-chan sighs that she can’t take responsibility for their lives. In-jae: “So because I can’t take responsibility, I shouldn’t stick out my hand either?”

He says that he worked at an amusement park once, and the moms who lost track of their kids always said the same thing—that they disappeared in the one second when they weren’t looking.

“What I’m saying is, even mothers lose their kids.” He leaves her there to wait alone.

Heung-soo shows up to meet Jung-ho, still not wanting to fight if he doesn’t have to. That is, until Nam-soon shows up. Eek, I think you just made it worse.

Jung-ho says he called him here so that Heung-soo couldn’t complain later that it wasn’t an evenly matched fight 2:2, and Heung-soo just sneers. Suddenly he kicks the two boys, and Nam-soon runs over.

And then… Heung-soo sticks his hands in his pockets. Whaa? To just take the beating? But why? He gives Nam-soon this pointed look. Man, there is some seriously twisted water under this bridge.

Jung-ho tears into Heung-soo, and even his friend gets scared. He sees that In-jae is calling Jung-ho’s phone, and he answers, terrified.

Jung-ho says he heard that Heung-soo has a bum leg. He grabs a nearby brick, ready to make the damage permanent. And it’s then that Nam-soon gets in Jung-ho’s way, to defend Heung-soo.

He fights back… and he’s vicious. Oh crap. What did they just unleash? Nam-soon knocks Jung-ho to the ground and starts wailing on him, with this terrifying rage.

And behind him, Heung-soo smiles, “So you’re not dead after all, Go Nam-soon.”

Flashback to Nam-soon getting beaten, all those years ago, with Heung-soo looking on. Only when it stops, the two boys smile at each other. Heung-soo brushes the dirt off his shoulders and says he did well. Oh shit. This is Nam-soon getting jumped into a gang, isn’t it?

In-jae and Se-chan rush to the field, just as the police arrive, a moment ahead of them. They look over at the boys, and there’s Nam-soon beating the living crap out of Jung-ho. He sees Teach and freezes.


Dude, it’s worse than I thought. The chair incident made me think that Nam-soon maybe had some anger and violence issues, but the way he was wailing on Jung-ho, and the way Heung-soo smiled? They were like 13-year old Fight Club, weren’t they? It’s obvious from their few interactions at school that Heung-soo feels deeply betrayed and Nam-soon feels extremely guilty—over what, we don’t know, but something tells me it’s not as simple as Nam-soon just wanting out. Before the reveal, I was hoping the two boys would overcome their differences and be friends again, but now I’m terrified what having Heung-soo around will do to change Nam-soon, after all his effort to be better. Now I get why Heung-soo scoffed at him being class president, which seems so completely ass-backwards, from his point of view. My understanding from Heung-soo’s reaction when Jung-ho asked if he was the Kyungkido jjang is that he might not be, which means there are only two possibilities: Heung-soo was and is lying about it, or it was Nam-soon. Eeeeeee.

The teachers, I continue to love from episode to episode, especially now that In-jae and Se-chan are forced to work together. I wished for the last three episodes that Ha-kyung’s conflict was one I cared more about, but today’s episode did a lot to make her more likable. At first I didn’t get her militant thing about that academy and her seemingly pointless shame about what high school she goes to (which I get in theory but am also like, yeah get over it). But now that we see she has ONE friend in this world in Kang-joo, it makes her more relatable, and her confession to Nam-soon about her family pressure helps to motivate her obsession with getting into Seoul U. Now I feel like I understand her a bit more, and can get past her cold exterior. If she’s got one friend she’s nice to, I can forgive a lot. I also just love her and Nam-soon together, because they’re both so damn lonely and adrift—I hope theirs will continue to be a very slow progression because I like their quiet understated dynamic.

I loved the slow reveal of Heung-soo’s character—they waited to bring him in after we’re introduced to Nam-soon and so firmly on his side, and just when you think Nam-soon couldn’t have more enemies or couldn’t handle one more bad thing in his life, Heung-soo shows up and makes his earlier conflict with Jung-ho seem like a cakewalk. It was a great tense introduction too, dropping enough hints that Nam-soon was acting out of character around this guy, making me so damn curious about their past.

It’s a good wrench to throw into the class dynamic, and an even better conflict for Nam-soon, even though it terrifies me because I just want him to be a good boy and graduate and be happy. (I know, where’s the drama in that? But! My heart! My heart can’t take it if he’s hurting!) My one tiny ounce of hope is in Heung-soo’s seemingly earnest desire to do the same and just graduate quietly, despite the fact that they’d each do better at separate schools. In other countries. Maybe on other planets. I have a feeling he’s going to drag Nam-soon down, which would make me hate him if he weren’t played by Kim Woo-bin. Now I won’t be satisfied till they’re BOTH graduating like good boys. Bah. I’m in for a world of pain, aren’t I?


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181 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. JenJen

    loved this episode. off to compare my “notes” with yours 😀

    • 1.1 pabo ceo reom

      I feel like every episode is better than the last so I just end up loving this drama more and more. I was practically shaking my screen at the end since I have to wait another week to watch!

      • 1.1.1 indiana

        Yes, the week is going to seem very long. Can’t wait to see more of Heung Soo and Nam Soon’s past friendship and what Nam Soon exactly did to Heung Soo, although I guess it involves messing up Heung Soo’s leg. Pretty obvious which of the two is “tsunami” (or should I say soon-nam-mi?), especially after that performance.

        I feel like every episode was better than the last. Hope they can keep that up until the end!!!!

        • Enz

          I think it’s something that perhaps was considered tattle tale-ing. A betrayal of sorts that both consider unforgivable. I guess we’ll see soon enough

          • Ennayra

            I think your point about tattle-tale-ing has something to do with it too, or else the drama wouldn’t have devoted time to that issue in earlier episodes.

            Loving this show so far!

  2. Quynh

    Thank god! I’ve been checking for hours! Thank you :)

    • 2.1 yanginggrid

      yes me too, and when I found out you posted the ep 4, I was like YYYYAAAAAAYYYY!!!!!!!

  3. Ivoire

    Thank you for the recap!

  4. kaeseorin

    this drama makes my heart hurt in the best way ;___;

  5. Funkypicklez

    Is it wrong that I was ridiculously turned on by WooBin’s smile at the very end (during the flashback)? >_< Nam Soon probably has something to do with Heung Soo's bum legs. Gahhhh. This just got SOOOO good!

    • 5.1 anna

      I honestly don’t find Woo Bin that good looking, but when he smiles… not evilly smirking I mean, but smile. I feel myself just falling for it.. it alone.

      • 5.1.1 AuntieMame

        You, guys, should have seen him in Vampire Idol. I loved him in it, especially when he was in love with tooki (who was actually a girl working a part-time job in costume).

    • 5.2 Dongsaeng killer

      Nado!!!! I wanted to jump through my screen and take him home with me. Woo bin ah! Come to noona!

  6. JoAnne

    So good – just on POINT with every aspect – and I could write pages about how perfect the Turtles song is and how the variations help point up certain situations but – its bedtime

    • 6.1 MiMi

      Turtles song?

      • 6.1.1 Mic

        “Happy Together”

        • MiMi

          can’t for the life of me remember which bit they played it over. does anyone remember?

          • Mic

            The bus scene between Nam-soon and Ha-Kyung, I think? A piano version. It’s been played quite a few times, though.

          • Julia

            When Ha Kyung and Nam Soon are riding the bus together. I noticed the song too, very cute.

        • Merrily

          This might ruin Happy Together for you.


  7. Kelinci Biru

    oooh. I haven’t watch this episode. *cursingslowinternet*

    anyway… it seems like a really good one.

    Initially I hoped for Nam Soon and Heung Soo to cuddle and make up already, but now that seems impossible. *sigh*

  8. jude

    I’ve been waiting for this recap.

    And also, when Nam Soon fought Jung Ho back at the end of the episode, I was like: “Oh CRAP.” *gape*

  9. stars4u

    This show is seriously making me curious with each episode!!!!

    What exactly happened in their past? Do we get a chance to see how their bromance was back then or maybe we could have it again

  10. 10 maslolz

    haven’t read the recap yet, JUST finished watching and have to say: THIS EPISODE, YA’LL. THIS EPISODE. All I kept screaming at my computer at the end was “NOOOOO, MY LOVELY NAM SOOOOON.” I just. care. so. much. about these characters. There were such lovely moments for so many of the relationships this episode, especially between Ha Kyung and Nam Soon and Ha Kyung and Kang-Joo. AND THEN THE REVEAL of hottie/scary Woo Bin and lovely Nam Soon’s past gangster ways. I was almost crying watching Nam Soon lose himself beating up Jung Ho. My reaction was so visceral, I lost my breath. Ugh. Wow. I just can’t believe how much I like this drama.

    • 10.1 KEYA

      same thing here! that scene when he went all out crazy beating Jung Ho, I was like super ‘WOAH’ the whole time. It’s soo intense, I gotta feeling that it’s a mix up of suppressed urge to actually response to all those bullying Jung Ho did plus his hidden inner violence self in the past.

      Jung Ho probably didnt see that coming at all, lol, and that creepy smile/smirk heung Soo had on his face during the whole thing? amazing.

  11. 11 cg

    Thanks for the recap..

    • 11.1 rainbow

      poor Nam Soon….let him be a good boy please…..

  12. 12 KEYA

    Just finished watching this latest episode and woot!! I’m loving it for real! Kim Woo Bin, Lee Jong Seok, Jang Na Ra, Daniel CHoi, the casts are just perfect! I even think that Hyoyong acts really well.

    I wonder what Nam Soon did in the past that made Heung Soo appeared betrayed, and will Nam Soon swayed into the dark side again or whatever.. I just had that feeling early on during episode 2 that he’s not that simple, makes his character more interesting.

    And some cute bromances would be nice as well, which might happen near the end, if they become friends again (hoping so).

    Kang Joo seems to have a crush on Nam Soon, but seems like Ha-Kyung will get together with Nam Soon in the end.

    And I wanna know the backstory of Se-Chan, you know, the reason for him avoiding responsibilities, not wanting to indulge much in his students life, could it be that his mom abandoned him when he was younger (just speculating, maybe I was reading too much in that line he said to In Jae about even moms sometimes let go of their child, his expression is just..sad..).

    Sorry, English is my second language, but I wanna participate tooo! kekekeke

    • 12.1 Mic

      I also thought there was a possibility Se-chan was abandoned by his mother.

    • 12.2 ladysarahii

      Your English is great!

      Someone — and I can’t remember if it was here or on soompi — mentioned that Se-Chan has quite a few similarities to Nam-Soon, which makes me believe he’s what Nam-Soon *could* be if he could get himself out of trouble. In the scene where he’s on the roof with In-jae, he had very similar body language.

      I wonder if Nam-Soon’s story parallels his in some way.

  13. 13 asdf

    The ending of this episode was pretty satisfying imo. the angsty tough on the outside soft on the inside is so overdone im glad to see a character whos kinda the opposite

  14. 14 ravens_nest

    Ugh, I adored this episode. The slow reveal of Nam Soon and Heung Soo’s past was exquisite.

    I kinda knew Nam Soon was an ex-hoodlum because he always seemed on the edge but deliberately holding himself back with Jung Ho instead of any kind of afraid of the bully. Even still I never guessed he was a psychotically vicious hoodlum back in his heyday. That was the best reveal I’ve seen in a long time.

    And you can tell from just that glimpse of him fighting and the way Heung Soo smirked at the end that Nam Soon was a Berserker fighter. I bet he relished fighting just like when he said to Jung Ho last episode when he told him, “Hitting people is delicious so you can’t stop.” I think he didn’t stop until hurt someone so bad that it finally shocked even him. (Maybe he even killed someone, though I’d think he’d be in Juvie if that were so.)

    I am so looking forward to the rest of this series. Nam Soon’s struggle between his growing kindness and the rage/violence that lurks beneath will really be exhilarating.

    • 14.1 ilikemangos

      Nice to see you here heartie!

      • 14.1.1 ravens_nest

        Lovely to see you, as well. XD I’m trying to get back into writing more about dramas on here but real life isn’t letting me. lol

  15. 15 mysterious

    Kang-joo better not like Nam-soon because I want her with Heung-soo. They are just so antagonistic with each other that seeing them fall for each other would be so much fun to watch.

    • 15.1 KEYA

      she seems like she has something for Nam Soon but I want her with Heung Soo too! I love the part where Kang Joo confronts him (she’s so cutely brave) and Heung Soo just pushed her head with his index finger. I could see them as a bicker couple.lol

    • 15.2 ravens_nest

      Honestly…I don’t want any of those kinda innocent girls with Heung Soo until he gets his life together a bit more. Cuz how he’s behaving around Nam Soon tells me he still has one foot still in the life. I can’t ship him with anyone except maybe a ride-or-die chick (or Nam Soon, obvs :P) until he shapes up more.

      • 15.2.1 Mic

        Glad I’m not the only one shipping Nam-soon and Heung-Soo! 😛

        • Dongsaeng killer

          The looks they send to each other tho….. NS with longing and despair and regret and HS with rage simmering under a mask of derision. It’s dysfunctional romance done right *still weeping over WHIB* I will be going down in flames with this ship and I regret nothing! :)

          • JoAnne

            a good bromance is often better than the alternative, in KDramaLand!

            And thanks, now I’ve got that Dido song in my head. What is it, White Sails or something?

          • Dongsaeng killer

            The awesome song is white flag :) And all hail the almighty bromance, one of the few consistently good things in Kdramas this year

          • Mic

            I love the dynamics of their relationship. I think it’s apparent now that Nam-soon has more physical power, but he feels so much guilt for something that he will do literally anything for Heung-soo. Whereas Heung-soo is physically incapable but holds so much power over Nam-soon because of whatever happened.

            The evidence of their past bromance just makes it better! >_<

      • 15.2.2 jhoana

        yeah i would love them together(heung soo and kang joo) but if he is still like before i believe they wont put them together :(

    • 15.3 Merrily

      I disagree. I have a great dislike for bickering romance so I’m hoping that Heung Soo will not get paired with Kang Joo. But from everything behind-the-scenes I’ve seen, that coupling seems to be where the show is heading. sigh.

      • 15.3.1 canxi

        I don’t think it’s just the usual k-drama bickering, though. Like I don’t really see them taking the time to yell at each other but I do see that they rub each other the wrong way, at least for now.

      • 15.3.2 ravens_nest

        I don’t necessarily hate the Bickering Romance trope but it’s now the thing that EVERY romance has to be bickering. Or even if two characters fight, no matter how bitterly, it must mean love. Haha but no.

        The saturation of that trope has led to people often misconstruing bickering for being asshole. Then they give assholes (i.e. BoF and SeGa) a pass because they think it’s cute to argue when actually what he’s saying is disgustingly douche-y.

        It’s rather tiresome, actually. :/

        PS. This is especially old after seeing how wonderful the Queen In Hyun’s Man romance was with a lovely couple who liked each other.

        • modest-goddess

          Yeah some of these dramas don’t know the difference between verbally abusive assholes and small petty bickering. When I watched BoF I never forgave GJP for the things he did in episode one.

    • 15.4 claire bear

      Oh,I can’t wait to see Heungsoo and Kangjoo being cute together!! And when you have such a hottie like Kim Woo-Bin,you gotta use him for some cute & tender scenes. I don’t want to see him always angry &scary for entire episodes of this drama.That’ll be such a waste !!!I wanna see him smile ,too. He looks so hot when he smiles,ah……..

  16. 16 kamee

    I LOVE this drama! It reminds me of the old days when i used to read fanfiction on soompi and all the gangs and stuff. Wow. I’m excited!!!

  17. 17 Hipployta

    This totally makes the end of the third episode make more sense…He takes the hits and then gets up like, “It feels good to hit right? That’s why you can’t stop. Go ahead then.” The chair episode was also a hint.

    And Heung Soo calling him a crazy bastard makes even more sense because he knows what he’s capable of. He didn’t fight in episode four just to see if it would come out of Nam Soo.

    My first thought on the twist was of Yankee Kun to Megane Chan’s Hanna LOL

  18. 18 dangerousgoods

    Thank you Girlfriday, I can’t wait to catch up with the episodes soon.

  19. 19 KZ

    God damn man. When Nam-Soo unleashed on Jung-Ho, that was vicious and brutal. So this means Nam-Soo is probably 18 or 19 too then. So weird because he kept getting beat up for the last 3 episode and then he comes in all badass this episode. But I’m seriously on the edge of my seat. Can’t wait till next episode. I also like the subtle love lines that are hinted at.

    • 19.1 KZ

      Also thinking Heung-Soo’s bum leg may have to do with their dark past.

  20. 20 Bakachild

    This show is just so good. It’s not taking the teenagers years lightly and showering it in fluff. I love that. And I have a love/appreciation for all the characters no matter how horrible they are. I almost wish i didn’t pick this up until halfway in because I’m so eager for episodes but I have to wait!

  21. 21 Mic

    This show is So. Freaking. Perfect.

    It’s just…gah, it’s amazing. I can’t even express how much I love this drama. It’s really incredible. For me, high school dramas are more relatable, and School 2013 is just incredible.

    The characters are so well written and fleshed out. Everything in this drama is done well. The writing, the directing, and the acting. I’m so emotionally invested in these characters.

    This show was already great, but the relationship between Nam-soon and Heung-soo made it even better. It’s so complex. You can guess by now that they were incredibly close friends, but Nam-soon somehow betrayed Heung-soo and caused the bum leg. I wonder what exactly there gang was. Did they beat kids up? Minor crimes? Both? Maybe they got involved in something more serious, and that’s what caused the trouble.

    Now we know why Nam-soon has no self-worth though. His guilt over whatever he did must be so profound that he thinks he doesn’t deserve to live. Maybe it would be a bit dramatic to say this, but in a way maybe he also doesn’t think he deserves to die? I think at this point he’s masochistic and thinks he deserves the pain of living (and the physical beatings he’s had) because of what he did.

    …I want to know what he did. >_<

  22. 22 crazedlu



  23. 23 Teresa

    Thanks so much for the recap! I’m starting to love this drama so much!
    Back to studying now…

  24. 24 Abbie

    Damn, this show is so freaking good! I cannot wait for next week. I want more, more, MORE! This show is seriously addicting.

    I am so shocked at that last little flashback we got between Nam-soon and Heung-soo. What the heck?! So Nam-soon has some serious baggage he’s been trying to ignore or get rid of, and then Heung-soo shows up and it all comes crashing back. Talk about a sucky life. I seriously love Nam-soon so much already, and, despite his antagonistic approach to everyone, I like Heung-soo. Yeah, that’s probably mostly due to Kim Woo-bin. How can anyone not love that guy? Anyway, I want these guys to work it all out somehow and become friends and put all that Fight Club stuff behind them.

    I find it curious that all Heung-soo wants is to “graduate quietly” pretty much like Nam-soon. I wonder why. What happened to make these guys so jaded about fighting? And the way Heung-soo was acting and all that he says to Nam-soon makes him seem really, REALLY jaded. What happened?! I want to know! So badly!

    Is it Monday yet?

    Thanks for the recap, Girlfriday!

    • 24.1 owl

      So “Fight Club stuff” – ouch. ” Except why are they still in school and not on the streets by now which would make more sense.

      I hate Nam-soon’s life for him ^-^cried^-^ when he said he’d throw himself away at the bridge scene. Public schools are so downhill crashing, whos’ even got a chance? Life houldn’t be this hard in HS- LoveSchool2013

      • 24.1.1 bjharm

        As I understand it police stay out of school as a matter of unspoken policy, thus if thugs stay in school they get breaks they would not get without the protection of being still in school. Back in the bad old days they used to sent in troops with guns into schools with the expected bloody results, thus the police stay out of school thing today.
        Also domestic abuse, speak volumes that all the teachers know the bullies father abuses him, but no one did squat to stop him, of course even if they bring in the police they more than likely would just turn away and say sorry its a family thing we can’t [wont] do anything…why you always see the mother and kids run out of the house when the father goes into the classic korean father rage and go stay at the bathhouse over night till sweet loving dad can get over his rage or drunk..you see it all the time in K-drama..ist not even done to shock its taken as part of everyday life.

  25. 25 Ilukd

    Oh I love love this drama … Amazing cast … Too much darkness but I hope sun will shine to all these crazy strong headed student … My OTP NamSoon + HaKung and KangJoo + HeungSoo …. This drama is my crack … Thanks god my school was safe place … :-)

  26. 26 Julia

    Eeeeek I’m super worried but super interested about Nam Soon and Heung Soo’s past. I’m also REALLY worried that Heung Soo is going to totally bring out the bad side of Nam Soon again, and they’ll both get into huge trouble before finding there way to good boy-hood again!

    Kim Woobin = gorgeous. Loving him <3.

    • 26.1 Merrily

      Interesting to see that most viewers believe Heung Soo will bring out something bad out of Nam Soon. I, on the other hand, think the show is going for a friendship between the two. They were really good friends before and because of an incident, they now have this complicated problem. This problem will get resolved and I believe through the process of this resolution, both characters will get healed and come to terms with their life. Then Seung Hoo and Nam Soon will be back to be bffs again!

      This angle would be totally awesome for the show (and me). We’ll have friendship, forgiveness (to others and oneself), coming-of-age, that I-don’t-know-what-I-want-to-do-with-my-life-but-I’ll-figure-it-out-somehow, and life start-over.

      • 26.1.1 Merrily

        And yes, Kim Woo Bin is absolutely gorgeous! Though they should’ve left his hair without that bang. A hair cut that exposes his forehead and accentuates his unique eyes really flatters him. He had that kind of hair in White Christmas and Vampire Idol.

      • 26.1.2 eternalfive

        Haha, that’s exactly what I was thinking! XD Bring on the bromance pleeaaase. 😛

  27. 27 dtp_jnr

    Am i the only one that could easily predict their past friendship? Cos they gave too obvious clues that Nam Soon was actually a good fighter…..They also gave clues in the preview that Nam Soon hurt Heung Soo in some way hence he’s doing watever he can to cool down his hate towards him……

    The drama is quite solid and if i couldn’t predict it to an extent, i would think it wasn’t realistic…..

    • 27.1 Mic

      I think it depends on how perceptive you are to foreshadowing. I only realized a little bit before Nam-soon jumped into the fighter that he must actually be a really good fighter, considering the clues, but if you weren’t looking for them you might not have noticed.

      I love that this drama actually is planned and that episode 1 had these hints. I’m going to watch this drama extra closely now.

      • 27.1.1 dtp_jnr

        When i watch movies/ dramas i usually do with keen eyes (i’m more into psychological thriller and horror/gore types of movies hence when i watch regular movies/dramas i watch them with the same eyes) hence i take note of almost all the minute details of the characters that may go overlooked by others…So generally i have a strong perceptive in foreshadowing dramas/movies…..

        • Mic

          Yeah, clearly, because you picked up on it! ^_^

          I’m usually in the moment, so I don’t pick up on foreshadowing unless it’s really obvious. 😛

    • 27.2 AZure

      I think most of us predicted to an extent on how things turned out because of the previews and buildup. They gave us clues to what will happen so you can’t say it was predictable because they were guiding us in that direction. I seriously doubt you guess that Nam-Soo was a former gangster or that Heung-Soo had a bum leg before episode 3. If you guessed that during episode 2, then it would be predictable. And it is very realistic compared to a lot of other dramas. I just recently got out of a ghetto public highschool, and things like this, if not worst, happens a lot. A kid at my school got freakin hit in the head with a metal pipe.

      • 27.2.1 dtp_jnr

        I think you didn’t read my comment correctly, the predictability of the plot to me so far is why i think the drama is realistic (which is what i summed up in my last paragraph previously)…..

        Also, yes from the first episode (without previews) i predicted that Nam Soon was a good fighter and in a top fighter/bully in a different school in his past…. can’t predict Heung Soo’s bad leg but i predicted that Nam Soon had done something bad that somehow hurt Heung Soo or someone close to him deeply and physically in the past, hence he’s trying to keep his nose clean, in the middle of episode 3 right before Heung Soo entered the show ….

        Cannot predict everything about it until i’m 5mins into an ep. hence i previously stated that i could predict it “to an extent”

        • AZure

          Sorry, I misread the realistic part. I’m sorry bout that. Honestly, I don’t know what I was replying about last night. I think I read your comment in a negative way for some reason. It was probably the word “predictable” I didn’t like because that’s usually a negative thing. But like I said, I think the show gave us enough obvious clues throughout the episodes to know where the story was going. You know, foreshadowing which I think is different from predictable.
          I think it’s because what I associate the word “predictable” in a negative way that I responded to your comment in a hostile manner. Haha sorry bout that.

          *Also just a little side-note; a fighter, bully, and gangster are all different things. Just want to point that out because I fight professionally (just training though) and I don’t like it when wannabe gangbangers on the streets fight and call themselves fighters when all they’re doing is swinging wildly. (Go Nam-Soo here was actually using decent technique though haha. Jung-Ho on the other hand..)

          • dtp_jnr

            When someone is regarded as a top fighter in high school (in Asian dramas/movies and some countries in the real world), it clearly means the person is a bully and most bullies roll in clicks/gangs hence when i say i predicted he was a top fighter or bully that is what is being referred to like Nam Soon and Heung Soo’s character in the ….People who fight professionally in high schools aren’t labelled as fighters…..

            So i think you’re personalizing things too much hence you miss the broader meaning of what is being said….

        • AZure

          Haha what? I already know the whole top fighter deal in dramaland and anime. Don’t know why you are explaining it to me. I guess I should have been more specific bout my note thing not being about the drama. It was just a general fact about how pro fighters feel when people associate us with negative things here in America. I was just using Jung-Ho’s wild swinging as a reference to how thugs fight and Nam-Soo’s technique on how pros fight.

          I feel like you didn’t read my reply. I my whole deal was you calling the show “predictable” and I already apologized about replying like an a-hole and said I understand what you’re original post was saying now. Not once did I question you predicting that he was a top fighter.

          • AZure

            I questioned you predicting he was a gangster. Just because bullies roll in cliques don’t make them gangsters. Jung-Ho and his two homies aren’t gangsters. They’re just bullies in a clique. There’s a difference between a clique like that and the gang that Nam-Soo was apparently involved with. That’s what I was questioning you about. About him used to being in a straight up in a gang. That’s why when you said he was a top fighter and I questioned you on predicting if he was a gangbanger; I was questioning if you thought he was just like another Jung-Ho in a different school. Because like I said already, Jung-Ho ain’t a gangster. He’s just a bully. Nam-Soo is a former gangster. Gangsters kill people. They do dirty stuff. Bullies just bully.

  28. 28 anna

    Please, please, please do not make Nam-soon turns out to be a bully in the past.. though that’s most likely to be true since he’s okay with taking the hit instead of fighting back. Maybe because he feels guilty of his past.

    NS totally left HS for dead, didn’t he? Probably they were in a fight or some sort and he ran away leaving his “friend” to be beaten up, explain the leg thing. UGHHHH… it’s getting so good.

    And about HK and KJ, I adore their friendship. It’s hard to find leading ladies that are friends and they are doing so adorably. About NS, I’m worried too. They won’t just be in a love competition, but also for the top spot in school. I hope they can still be friends through it all.

    Sigh, high school students and their angst.

  29. 29 faridah2201

    I figured they were in a gang together.
    I hope it works out well for everyone but clearly that is not an option. I am honestly considering dropping the drama to save me the heartache but I know I won’t, I’m hooked.
    Great recap. Happy to know that I am not the only one setting myself up for a ton of pain.

    • 29.1 jhoana

      nahh you are not the only one , when i finished watching the 4 episode i was thinking of dropping it also but right now i know i cant Xd

  30. 30 Merrily

    Well, I hope they won’t make Kim Won Bin’s character into the villain of this show because I just wouldn’t be able to take it! Also, I want this show to boost his popularity. I’m really really hoping the writer will handle the characterization of Heung Soo well, and maybe have Nam Soo and Heung Soo become bffs, for Kim Woo Bin’s sake.

    Is that tomboy girl Heung Soo’s love interest? I really hope not, but what am I deluding myself. The SIGNS are there. I just don’t like her character, and the way the actress (an idol?) is portraying her is definitely not helping. I am not sure if I can handle watching Kim Woo Bin romancing this character. Don’t get me wrong; but I have watched this bickering/love-hate kind of romance done to death and frankly, I would rather watch Kim Woo Bin sizzles the screen up with chemistry instead of listening to a gazillion amount of loud nagging from his partner.

    • 30.1 Mic

      I definitely don’t think Heung Soo will be the villain. In this drama, I think it’s more of a man vs. self and man vs. society story at the core. All of the characters are too complex for one person to simply be the “bad guy”. I think that’s not really the point of the drama. It’s about development and progress.

      So obviously Woo Bin’s not the perfect prince charming, but he’s playing a layering, interesting character, and that’s the most important thing, right? Especially considering no one in this drama is perfect. Tbh, if there was a quintessential hero or heroine in this drama, they’d be boring and pale in comparison to the depth of the other characters.

      • 30.1.1 Merrily

        I get your point, but I have never had any love for quintessential character. I love complex characters, especially the kind that scorns or disdains society. That’s why I root for Kim Woo Bin’s character. I was just ranting while imagining the worse case scenario.

        • Mic

          Yeah, well I don’t think anyone really loves the “quintessential hero”, because in the end…they’re shallow. But yeah, I was mostly saying that I don’t think this is the type of show where you just have a bad guy or something. Even then, I really don’t see Heung Soo being depicted as the bad guy. He’s shaking this drama up in all sorts of ways. 😛

          Somehow I feel like Nam Soon is both the hero and the antagonist, lol. XD

  31. 31 Alvina

    This is like every Japanese school drama done right, you know? Gakusen without the crazy flourishes. GTO with realistic touches.

    I’m loving it, but it hurts so much to watch. That wisp of nostalgia mixed with youthful idealism. It seems so far away for me right now; makes me wistful. :(

    • 31.1 Merrily

      Youthful idealism? What do you mean by that?

      I still have a few years left of my teenage years. I should do something with it instead of studying and watching dramas to experience life vicariously.

      This drama is making me want to do something totally random for the heck of it. That’ll leave some good memories.

      Hmm… I wonder if I might be one of the only few who will not experience any high school drama before it’s over. Life is pretty normal to me. Should I be thankful for its normalcy or should I lament the lack of passion and energy?

      • 31.1.1 Mic

        Lol, are you me? XD

        • Merrily

          LOL. I guess you’re experiencing the same kind of thing too.

      • 31.1.2 flour

        hahaha same for me! i dont have this kind of angsty bully experience in high school. high school was more like reply 1997 to me, complicated friendship and teenage obsession over a band. sigh. BUT THIS SHOW IS GOLD. i love it.

        • kenz

          There are obviously many calsses in a High School. I bet there is one or two calss in Seungri High School that is so much like Answer me 1997. In my high school, we had class that is not good in academic level and you know so much like Nam-soon’s class and some other class where most of the students like Answer me 1997.

      • 31.1.3 ilikemangos

        can i join the club? haha.
        I’ve got a couple years left before the teenager era ends for me.
        I think we all rush to get out of this stage and yet, when we’re older, we’ll be looking back all “what what the rush?”

    • 31.2 faridah2201

      Watch LIFE, it is a Japanese school drama that just about kills your soul but certainly in the more realistic realm

    • 31.3 funkypicklez

      but gokusen is just so freaken awesome <3 haha. will not regret the many hours i have poured to those hotties. miura haruma <3

      but yes. i know what you mean. so much more realistic and heartwarming ^^

  32. 32 jollyroger


  33. 33 Kenzz

    Also remember the time when one of Nam-soon frd threw the chair out of window n when he came to thank Nam-soon, Nam -soon thanked him instead. I think he said something like, “No, You saved me”. I think he was thanking his Frd for throwing that chair coz otherwise Nam-soon cud hav smash the chair on Jung-ho’s head.
    Great show. I’m really scared for Nam-soon’s coming period in school coz now he had lost his control n might struggle to hide it deep down all over again. He almost lost it several time wen getting hit but now he has lost it. Hope he finds his place soon. Don’t know if I can take many episode of Nam-soon raging out. Love this. Great characterization’s. kudos for the writers:)

  34. 34 Acciovino

    Longtime lurker, first time commentator. Hola!

    I don’t know…I really want to like this drama and I can see why it’s good. I think the power struggle between teachers and students in a lower-achieving high school is really well done, really nuanced and believable. But maybe having grown up in the US, I don’t quite understand some of the characters. I don’t know why Ha Kyung is ostracized for going to an enrichment program. I also don’t understand why she’s no longer able to attend after its revealed that she doesn’t go to an elite high school. I also don’t get why she’s at a shitty high school in the first place if she is so intelligent and hard working, and comes from money (which I infer because of her whole family having gone to Seoul National, having the money to attend after-school enrichment, etc). I am sure there is a cultural element I am missing, but as a Korea American I do think I have insight as to the academic pressures students endure and somehow it befuddles me as to why Ha Kyung is getting so shit upon for trying so hard. Are the mean girls just jealous? Aside from Ha Kyung and the #1 in the class, no one appears to be studying at all.

    That being said, I will stick to it. I’m enjoying the performances and I am psyched to see more of Kim Woo Bin. And does anyone else really want Jang Nara and Daniel Choi to get it on?? Such fiery tension between those two!!

    • 34.1 funkypicklez

      I’ll try to answer some of your questions so you can enjoy this drama as much as i do :)

      1. HaKyun is ostracized for going to this enrichment program because she literally had to abandon her identity as a Seungri high school student because it was not one of the acceptable schools by the enrichment program. You can see why the other students would feel betrayed by this. She’s basically saying the school and all its students are beneath her level. As for the question why she is no longer allowed to attend when the program finds out is she’s not an elite high school student is because it brings down the level and credibility of the program. When they close off registration to only elite students, it makes it more lucrative and attractive to the elite students. It’s a marketing strategy. Finally, it’s not explained but as for why she didn’t get into an elite school, people study like crazy for these tests and like the SATs they don’t reflect at all how smart the student really is. She could have just had bad luck or something like that on that day (like a cold – honestly there are kids who decide to take a gap year because they were sick for the sooneung and didn’t get the score they wanted!). Or… there might be a back story that the drama has yet to tell us :) Also, there is no – or VERY LIMITED – back door deals (bribes) when it comes to entrance tests. Security and the punishments for cheating on a test like this is SO SEVERE no one really wants to take a chance.

      Finally, why is no one studying? Well, don’t forget that we are only getting a look at one classroom. (In Korea, the teachers switch around unlike American high schools where the students change for different subjects). Therefore, there’s always this “designated” classroom for the troublemakers so their bad behavior doesn’t affect the truly hard working students. This seems to be the case here but then that makes me wonder why HaKyung is there… another answer is that Korea’s educational system is SO dependent on enrichment programs, hakwon. To the point where actual Korean students go to hakwon till three or four at night and sleep in school which leads to the degrading status of teachers which the drama points out….

      • 34.1.1 acciovino

        Thanks for the knowledge, funkypicklez! All that makes sense and I guess there’s a lot more to the educational system in Korea than I understood. It is hard to enjoy a drama when you don’t understand character motivations and conflicts.

        I still think I am missing out on some things in this drama (like a lot the writing is often left un-subbed by Viki, probably because there just isn’t the screentime to flash a subtitle in some of these shots, and I’m a slow reader in Korean). I appreciate how realistic this drama is, without any of those in-yo-face chaebol/poor girl romance cheap thrills (not that I am above that stuff by any means!). Off topic, but I love this blog! The only other person in my life that watches K-drama is my mother, and she’s not into this one. Ha.

      • 34.1.2 Enz

        Thanks funkypicklezfor clarifying this cos I was having the same problem understanding that bit too. And thanks acciovino for bringing it up !

        I said the same thing in the episode 3 comments but late so no one replied I think

  35. 35 pigtookie

    Lee Jong Seok on that last scene, man, that was intense… and I love bickering Jang Nara and Daniel Choi with opposite ideals and seeing through each other’s attempts.

  36. 36 Misslenis

    im i the only one who stress out,… so this is what kids this day do

  37. 37 lovenicole

    I will have to watch this show on KBS World!Because of Hyoyoung.
    PS:This is completely unrelated,but this song is so great I want to share it with everyone.
    Ali(who also sang the OST of “roof top prince” and “faith”) singing “The thorn bird”:

  38. 38 twilove26


    ahhhh i can’t control my feelings with this drama. I want Nam-Soon to be happy and learn to love himself but i know the drama will first reveal him to the most raw and vulnerable phase first before he starts to heal….and the relationship with Heung Soo is so complex…but i have the hope that the drama will end with them accepting and loving themselves and best friends…but first is going to get darker right…ohh Nam Soon i’m so afraid for you to find out what ever happen to you that made you lose your worth as a human being…i got curious with Ha Kyung’s family, where are they? if there is such a pressure from them for her to be in S University, wouldn’t they be right there on her toes making sure she’s getting the necessary education? i hope her family’s absence has nothing to do with Nam Soon pls >..<…but maybe a sister figure for both? idk my head is going miles an hour trying to figure everything out XD….ahhh jinjja my heart can't take it!!!

    is it monday already????

  39. 39 twilove26


    ahhhh i can’t control my feelings with this drama. I want Nam-Soon to be happy and learn to love himself but i know the drama will first reveal him to the most raw and vulnerable phase first before he starts to heal….and the relationship with Heung Soo is so complex…but i have the hope that the drama will end with them accepting and loving themselves and best friends…but first is going to get darker right…ohh Nam Soon i’m so afraid for you to find out what ever happen to you that made you lose your worth as a human being…i got curious with Ha Kyung’s family, where are they? if there is such a pressure from them for her to be in S University, wouldn’t they be right there on her toes making sure she’s getting the necessary education? i hope her family’s absence has nothing to do with Nam Soon pls >..<…and then i got curious about the way both Namsoon and Heung Soo pushed Kang Joo's head with their finger? i really hope their past does not revolved around a girl?
    but maybe a sister figure for both? idk my head is going miles an hour trying to figure everything out XD….ahhh jinjja my heart can't take it!!!

    is it monday already????

    • 39.1 TS

      That finger thing on the head kind of surprised me too. I think touching her head with one finger indicates:

      a) power (I’m holding back but telling you to push off)
      b) condescension.

      • 39.1.1 jhoana

        in what scene namsoom touch kang joo´s head?

  40. 40 selina

    I am in for a world of pain right with you girlfriday. I have fallen for Heung-soo as much as I have for Nam-soon and I am foaming at the mouth to know about their past together. I need some kind of bromance to form between them. I need to know why HS seemingly loathes NS? (and why he holds back in fighting when it obvious he can kick arse as much as NS did) Why does NS feel so much guilt and would do anything to make it up to him and what exactly the it is. I can’t hate HS not only because he is being perfected by Kim Woo-bin, but because he seems like e just as richly layered, sympathetic, and have is moments os heroic awesome sauce as NS. IS IT MONDAY YET!?

  41. 41 srkambbs

    After that parkour from the previous episode, I was like Nam soon is really good at running away from things. I bet he dint learn that to escape from bullies. And Viola!! All the kick ass moves from this episode just makes this awesome. On the other hand, this might also hint that Nam soon isn’t just running away physically but also from situations that affect him emotionally. In a way, he is still a coward just like Daniel Choi .. afraid to do important things. There are so many parallel things between these two characters that it makes me wonder if the drama is gonna put in a family tie between them. I hope not.

  42. 42 rose

    can someone please tell me the name of the song that comes at the end of every episode

    • 42.1 skillz

      It’s Welcome to the School by 4minute.

  43. 43 rose

    what i think is that the reason heung soo has a bun leg is because of nam soon….and i’m pretty sure that nam soon is tsunami, the badass fighter and he was the jjang as well

    • 43.1 skillz

      Good point. That seems to be it. Reading character descriptions for the drama, for Heung Soo it said that he’s pissed because he couldn’t live his dream or something. I’m guessing Nam Soon messed his leg up pretty badly and Heung Soo’s dream was most likely something that involved physical activity (with legs….running maybe? I don’t know). So now Nam Soon feels terrible about it.

  44. 44 skillz

    It just keeps getting better and better. I loved the whole cafeteria scene. So much tension. Kim Woo Bin….is great. I knew he’d make a great “bad boy”, his looks certainly help.

    I had a feeling Kang-joo liked Nam Soon ever since the first episode. I think it was sort of confirmed in that restaurant scene. But I want her to end up with Heung Soo.

    When Se-chan was talking down on Jung-ho in the hallway, I really thought In-jae was going to start screaming at him, but I guess the door slam was enough. I had to laugh at how Se-chan jumped in surprise. lol

    I don’t want to wait another week for this. It’s THAT good. The only other recent drama I got really into was Reply 1997. But I like this even more.

    Also, am I the only one who doesn’t care too much about Nam Soon? I like him and all, but I don’t feel much for the character, at least not in the way a lot of people seem to feel.

    • 44.1 kenz

      I am all into Nam-soon’s character. From the very start, he had this amist character where he doesn’t care much but would do his best to help for ppl in need as he it fit. Then Heung-soo came and made Nam-soon character more interesting. From what I see, Nam-soon is a boy who was so much like Jung-ho back in middle school or even worse and around that time he made a huge mistake or hurt somebody so bad that he felt guilty enough to let go of that life. He was starting new life in this high school even getting bullied by Jung-ho. Nam-soon, I think is a boy who has realized what he did back then was one big mistake and wants to redeem himself but think that his action was too bad to get forgive himself in anyway. He is just trying to get through with his life with no meaning, like he wrote in his self-introduction homework, “Just because…..” I think this show is gonna bring him out of that amist world he is trapped in and teach him to forgive himself and that every body makes mistake and should deserve 2nd chance if he/she knows what they did was wrong, very wrong.

  45. 45 crazedlu

    back for another comment now that the spazzing has subsided.

    yunno, there are qualities in both injae and sechan that when meshed, form like, the perfect teacher. is two better than one? yes it would seem so. ha. it’s only bound to get better. that’s my hope for the two as teachers, at least.

    as for namsoon and heongsoo, i kept thinking throughout the ep, “what is it? how are they related? what the frig?” i picked up on the betrayal and guilt, as was mentioned, but there was something more. what’s their relationship? and then we got closer and closer to the end, and BAM! the flashback hits… GANG INITIATION!


    how dare they make me care for go namsoon so deeply and then make me question my love for him?! i mean, i still care, A LOT about namsoon, but now i’m a little scared.. to know… about his past, yunno. i’m scared i won’t be able to back him entirely when all the secrets do get uncovered. i fear a part of me will want him to suffer to make ammends for whatever wrongs he might have committed. bah. and he’s suffering plenty already. so maybe it’s enough?

    the moment heongsoo put his hands in his pockets, i thought, “no! don’t make namsoon fight! he’s only withstood and deflected everything thus far! no!” and then namsoon gives jungho one of the most intense beatings EVER and my money’s on namsoon as kyungkido jjang.

    siigh. so good.

    i’m just thankful we already have redeeming qualities in place to make us stay by namsoon’s side. took me a while longer to side with lee kangto.. then he became gaksital, so i’ll stay optimistic about namsoon.

    can’t wait for next week! and i tooootally love kangjoo. ha.

  46. 46 eternalfive

    Yay, I’ve found something that gives meaning to Mondays again, hahaha. XD

  47. 47 skillz

    I seriously can’t wait for next week. Forgot to mention that there’s this song with violins that I really like. I can’t wait until the OST is fully released.

    • 47.1 anberlin

      Oh my god, I think I know what song you’re talking about. I want the OST so bad too D: I hope they don’t pull a ‘Panda and Hedgehog’ thing where they DON’T release the OST cause then I’d think I’d really weep. So far School 2013 has a REALLY good OST.

  48. 48 Amanda

    GAH! This episode was so great! Now I can’t wait for In-jae to get through to Nam-soon, or for Se-chan and In-jae to figure it out and work together! That’s what I’m most excited for!! Also, Young-woo might play a big role in helping Nam-soon figure his life out. (Basically his slight downfall is kinda inevitable now… Can’t wait to pick up the pieces!)


  49. 49 dany

    Interesting episode, thank you! Nobody is perfectly good or bad here that’s why the characters feel so realistic.

  50. 50 Almontel

    Thanks for the recap…

    i’m just really happy that i now have a good Monday/Tuesday series to watch and enjoy…

    i’m really loving this series and hopefully we’ll get a good happy ending…

    i just feel bad for all the characters…it seems only KangJoo is the only ‘Normal’ student here…ke ke ke…

    let’s wait and see for more developments…

    • 50.1 jaye

      seriously…what do u mean by normal??

  51. 51 jaye

    what do u mean by normal??

    • 51.1 jaye

      oops.. sorry for double post.. i find kang joo boring though i like the bond bwtween her and Ha Kyung..
      hopefully Kang joo will get her back story in this drama for me to like her,
      i have a feeling that she has something for nam soon

  52. 52 nouynouy

    Thanks for the recap !

    I LOVE this show so much >.< They're doing a really good job making us curious ! by now, curiosity is killing me … in reminds me of Reply 1997 in that way !

  53. 53 sujudiehardfan

    This drama is sooo good!!! Can’t wait for the next ep…
    Thanks 4 the recap… I already watch it subbed but still need to read ur recap 2 feel completed….

  54. 54 John


    Thanks for the recap.

    Ha-kyung uses the money to buy them new school uniforms.

    Yay ! That track suit wasn’t doing her justice.

    • 54.1 Liz_B_L

      Yeah xD That school has such gorgeous school uniforms, but the tracksuits of the school are just ridiculous xD

  55. 55 whiteswann

    i love this drama than most dramas they release nowadays

    i really can’t wait how namsoon will change his perspective in life, and i think he must be the tsunami that everyone is talking about. i think heung soo’s will help him forgiving himself by what happens in the past and move on. just like what i’ve read about heung soo’s character, He is the one guy everyone is afraid of but unlike the usual ‘leader of the school’ he follows a rule that he never touches anyone from the same class and has boldness and loyalty. He earns a lot of trust with and is attractive in that way. Many are highly expecting the after effects of his rule and story that is about to be unfolded by him.

    and namsoon and ha kyung, i like they’re scenes and the BGM when they’re together. one who change because of his past and the other who’ll do anything for her future. i also read about these
    An insider said, “They will be in a relationship where they need each other more than they know.

  56. 56 TS

    Park Se Young smiles? I’m impressed. I find her beautiful but majorly deadpan.

    I’m glad nam soon beats up Jung ho. The latter had it coming.

  57. 57 Carole McDonnell

    Stuff I want that I will probably never get: Kang-joo and Nam Soon as a couple. (That’s one thing I hate about some movies — American or global– we see who will end up with whom.) But apparently, in the finale, Kang-joo and new hottie baddie will be a couple and Vice president and president will be a couple.

    I am wondering if Oh Jung Ho is even redeemable at this point. I’m not sure if this is a more realistic approach to bullying in that the bully just is totally pitiful and yet moving slowly into unlikable territory…but I seriously do not want him getting Nam Soon into any more trouble (as hinted at in preview.) The fact that he has an unseen father who is alcoholic and who throws things and embarrasses him is getting old right now. I don’t care how much he suffers at home right now and if the writers want to keep bully doing bullying yet keep me hoping he sees the light…well, they BETTA give me a scene where his dad is stumping all over him. Ya know… so I can commiserate.

    When Oh Jung Ho was cruel and belittling to teacher, he reminded me of some cruel kids I met when I used to teach. Mercifully I don’t remember anyone actually doing/saying cruel stuff to me but I remember the vicious yet casual way some kids would skewer other people. (Aargh…bad memories flood my mind now. There was the teacher with the bladder problem who always smelled like pee and which everyone -kids and teachers– pretended not to notice. But THEN…some bully had to skewer her.) So, yeah, am not gonna excuse his cruelty unless he really has a life worse than all the other kids combined.

    I like the whole Good Teach/Bad Teach. They need each other. Like imperfect halves of a perfect whole. Together they will meld into a perfect Uhmforce. Not sure if I want them to fall in love. I could take that or leave it.

    Thanks so much for the recap.

  58. 58 DeeDee

    “Maybe on other planets.” Like Heung-soo is actually a vampire from a planet far, far away and plans to become an idol ? Kidding. But I love the subtle Vampire Idol references there *wink* (I am delusional. I know)

    It’s a great ending in a sense that it makes you wonder and think even after it’s last second. I love it. Now I (semi) get why Nam-soon acts the way he does earlier on. Maybe Nam-soon was trying to do what Heung-soo is doing right now. Getting by quietly without causing trouble .. because he has done trouble before and is sick of it ?

    But why does he not have a dream though; that is what truly baffles me. Maybe it’s just a fantasy rather than a dream. Maybe Nam-soon’s dream is to be together with a vampire idol but it is shunned upon. *GASP* Oh, I wish.

    • 58.1 TS

      Yeah, I kind if winder about them being supernatural beings, especially since nam soon recovers like vampire from his injuries, I.e. abnormally fast.

  59. 59 DeeDee

    Also, it is just me or is Kang-joo getting on my nerves ? She is kinda sorta a tad bit annoying. Great as a friend, stands up to people, has good intentions but just plain annoying. It’s pretty obvious she does have a crush on Nam-soon, but I’m pretty willing to let that crush go into oblivion.

    Kang-joo, for once, let the characters do as they please alright ? If they don’t eff up, we won’t get conflict and without conflict there’s no story. I’ve come to like Ha-kyung and heck, even Jung-ho. Please writers, write up a good backstory for Kang-joo so I can overlook her annoying-ness.

    • 59.1 Fab

      Kang Joo is that optimistic real friend that supports the people she loves no matter what. Everybody should have someone like her beside them. She is the reason why Ha-kyung is opening up and therefore making us understand (and like) her. As for the evil Jung Ho, you’re obviously in it for the drama.

      • 59.1.1 Carole McDonnell

        My thoughts, exactly. She is the only normal kid so far..and I like her attitude toward things when she wonders aloud why people are being so weird…or when she challenges them to their faces.

        We have kids here who are the typical kids of dramas: troubled, misunderstood, bully, reforming bully, mean girl gang packettes, disabled child, fun-loving accepted possibly-gay school gossiper, jealous classmates, special kid with influential powerful class-conscious mother etc. We need someone there who behaves like a fairly normal kid.

        I really liked the touch where both she and Nam Soon can scale large fences. Maybe they will join the athletic team…but alas, no love affair.

        Thanks for liking Kang Joo as well.

    • 59.2 ravens_nest

      lol Not every teenager has an angsty or tragic past. Real people have various different personalities.

      Kang Joo is fine. She cares about her friends and didn’t like seeing Ha Kyung being cold or Nam Soon seemingly becoming acquiescent with Heung Soo. It was out of character for them so she was trying to talk them out of changing for the worse. How was she to know Ha Kyung was being cold cuz she was embarrassed and Nam Soon has a secret past of being a violent gang member?

      I don’t find her annoying at all.

    • 59.3 abby87

      you’re not alone.. kang joo is the one i disliked the most.. since i don’t like goody characters they really get on my nerves. i wish she has more flaws like any other students..
      i find oh jung ho more likable than her

      i’m hoping that the writer will turn her character into darker mode.. hahaha

  60. 60 nat

    the moment when Kang-joo struts up to Heung-soo, pauses and then places her hand on her hip was the greatest moment in dramas this year. just in time.

    • 60.1 Carole McDonnell

      YES! and if i know my dramas….if Heung Soo remains in the school and doesn’t get kicked out, he and Kang-joo are gonna fall in love. Just my thoughts.

  61. 61 p3rk3le

    gosh i you girlfriday!! only you can put my feelings in the right words <3

  62. 62 Lizzy4e

    This drama is doing a superb job of conveying the misery of high school… maybe I am projecting. My life was not this bad and I did not get beat up on a daily basis but high school was a roiling pit of misery for me. This drama reminds me of the despondency and despair that I experienced during High School. However there are elements, I have yet to pin down, that keep this drama from being too heavy for me to bear.

    I am totally invested in our main hero Nam Soon. I root for this lost kid who is trying so very hard to do the right thing without any wise guidance; he goes to school, he refuses to fight, he stands up for the feeble-minded, and has a part-time job.

    In Jae is so naïve, so Pollyanna that she gives hope. Her belief that everyone is redeemable has not yet been bludgeoned to death by repeated failure. I am not very invested in her.

    Se Chan must be the main character because he is so unlikable right now; we will all get to follow along as he grows from a selfish arrogant waste of space into prince charming or some semblance there of. I am not terribly invested in him either.

    The two girl students, the tough one and the smart one, I like them both and hope they get fleshed out more. They are still shallow. I want to see where the story takes Nam Soon and Ha Kyung. Kang Joo is feisty and that is interesting.

    Transfer student, he knows where the bodies are buried.

    So in the end Nam Soon is a fighting machine. He has been practicing restraint for everyone’s benefit, but once he gets started he looses control and cannot pull back.
    It is nice to know that this sweet kid who gets abused is in reality a force to be reckoned with.

    • 62.1 bjharm

      the thing is that you can not really take Se Chan without adding In Jae, they seem to be written as a pair both affecting the other, so if Se Chan is going to become a human then it well be because of In Jae, it pretty much the old male jerk due to sweet innocent girl becomes a better person that in pretty every Korean comedy/romance made..well since Jang Nara’s successful story of a bright girl anyway. Of course here it not really the main story line, it may well just serve as comic relief from all the dark storyline

  63. 63 Laurita

    I’m sorry, but can anybody clarify me how old are the students there???
    I think, I’m mixed when it comes to the school systems in different countries…

    (P.S. ;loving the series.So, Much.

    • 63.1 heayun

      They are in 11th grade, so they would be 17 or 18 years old, I’m guessing. And Heung Soo and Nam Soon seem to be a year older than the rest of the class.

      • 63.1.1 Laurita

        thank you very much :)

    • 63.2 bjharm

      yeah highschool end, normally in your 20th year..thus the tradiation that under 20 you are a child 20 and you and adult. Of course with korean crazy age thing you could really be 22 and still 20..lol

      • 63.2.1 Laurita

        thank you two very much. I was a little bit confused because in my country, if you don’t plan to study in uni, you can leave the school after 10th grade – I thought, why do they go to the 11th, if they don’t want to. The systems are indeed different.

  64. 64 Ranter

    One of them says he heard a rumor that he was some legendary jjang [meaning best, a title only the coolest baddest badass gets]

    Is that what one of the boys if Shut Up Flower Boy Band referred to when he called Do-il “Do-jjang”? (in the last episode)

  65. 65 coconutjuice

    I haven’t watched a drama since Arang and the Magistrate which ended way back in October so thank you for letting me look forward to something to watch on Mondays and Tuesdays School 2013!

  66. 66 modest-goddess

    I spoiled myself by reading this before watching it but I’m sure I’ll still fill shocked by watching it. Especially at all these smiling while being beaten scenes. I’m so happy Kim WooBin has finally joined the story and that his character is complicated and interesting. I’d heard about the Jjang thing from a blog but seeing it on screen is pretty terrifying.

  67. 67 Jaslyon

    First off thank you so much for the recap! Well and all the other recaps (it’s my first time posting on the blog so I thought I should give credit to all the recaps that I’ve read which is MANY). I am always interested to read what you have to say about the drama’s I watch, because I love hearing other people’s opinions about the things I am obsessed with! Anyway I have to say the whole time I was watching the show, from episode 1-4, I was like, isn’t Nam-Soon letting himself get beat up? That was partly just my wishful thinking, since i tend to like bad boy characters ;D, but I also just got the sense, as many other people have said, that he had some major pent up rage. There was the chair thing, the letting himself get beat-up thing, the things he said to the Jung-ho, and just his overall edgy character. But man am I loving the show, and I seriously cannot wait for the next episode! One thing I wonder about though is when Nam-Soon was first beat up, he lay in his bed and whispered over and over to himself “I’m ok.” It may just be me reading into the situation more than I should, but I feel like Nam-Soon has been injured seriously before… maybe something to do with his mysterious past? So no surprise here when Nam-Soon when bat-sh*t-crazy, but like everyone else, I am mega curious about his mysterious past.

    • 67.1 modest-goddess

      My theory is that Nam-soon comforting himself by saying “I’m ok” is about being beaten by his father as a child. Also where is Nam-soon’s mother?
      We already know Jung-ho has an abusive father and that Nam-soon’s father is a drunk.

  68. 68 boholAnna

    I’m a bit nostalgic for Gokusen.

  69. 69 Jeannette

    I must be twisted because I have a thing for boys that fight. Maybe it’s because I dated a martial artist? I dunno. All I know was that when they were all covered in blood at the end I was like “…gah!”

    Great ep. Great series so far. I am so happy to have found you, School 2013!

    • 69.1 bjharm

      boys that fight are ok but there been little ‘fighting’ it is just beating someone up till they fall down then putting your boot in..to my mind there no way that can be in any way be classed as ‘fighting’ fighting suggest some sort of contest after all. It good in a way as they not trying to glory the top dog jjang thing, so often seen in korean Manhwa but showing the more ugly side of it all.

    • 69.2 inxomnia

      Oh man. I think I do too. Despite my brief concern for Jung Ho, I was like … damnnn Nam Soon, that’s hot.

      But I don’t want Nam Soon to be a baddie.

  70. 70 queencircles

    I love this. I spoiled it for myself by reading this recap before deciding to watch the show, but it’s great nonetheless. Can’t wait for moaaarr!!

  71. 71 TS

    I’m finally watching this, and I have serious hots for Heung-Soo. I am so turning into a dirty old woman…

  72. 72 Mia

    wow so intense!
    thank you for the wonderful recap!!

  73. 73 Noelle

    I F***ING KNEW IT!!! Ever since the chair scene and him looking at his hands I knew he had to be a beserker…. and he IS! This show just keeps getting better and better.

    • 73.1 bjharm

      Majisuka Gakuen japanese TV show has what has to be the scariest Berserker gang fighter you like to see..or not to see considering she covered in other people’s blood most of the time. Nothing more scary than fighting someone that will not stop until they either dead or dead unconscious.

  74. 74 Sajen

    I love this show so much and of the possibilities in my head of what transpired between Nam Soon and Heung Soo I think the most likely is that Nam Soon, backed out/fled/didn’t show up for, a fight that caused Heung Soo and the other members of whatever they were to get beat and led to Heung Soo’s leg problem.

  75. 75 dayoldbagel

    Thanks for the recap. I don’t think that I’ve ever been so invested in a drama after only 4 episodes…i wish more k-dramas were like this. There isn’t a character in the drama that i hate or dislike (in the sense that i think that every character with significant screen time adds something meaningful/interesting to the drama and acts in believable, and often relatable, ways…) which is almost never the case.

    My favorite relationship between 2 characters is the one between nam-soon and ha-kyung….they’re both lonely and fairly closed off people (though ha-kyung atleast seems to have one fairly good friend) and i think that they’ll find in each other somebody that they can talk to,trust, and rely on…something that i think that they both need. And if they develop romantic feelings for each other i like how they’ll have developed from that and not just physical attraction or the common bickering type drama relationships.

    I hope that the ha-kyung/kang-joo friendship won’t be threatened by feeling that they both have for nam-soon…i don’t think that it will be because i think that the concern that kang-joo shows for nam-soon is just out of friendship. She cares a lot about her friends and makes sure to look out for them. But ha-kyung’s reaction to kang-joo’s interest in nam-soon does show imo that she at least has some feeling for him.

  76. 76 topper

    It’s funny that although the daring female teacher ups the tension, in real life female teachers should be more cautious than this. You can end up permanently scarred if you know what I mean.

  77. 77 Esther

    Wow..wonderful recap..thanks
    Suddenly i am not interested in nam soon and ha kyung’s love story anymore…
    Instead i am fired up by kang joo and heung soo’s interactions…oooh such a cute couple
    Kim woo bin is the first actor that I ve admired so much…this guy’s got the best acting skills…you can almost see he honestly studies his character…his expressions are precise…
    Hyo young is pretty good too…even though she’s a newbie
    Awww such a cute couple…i hope they plan to hook them up together till the end….
    And seriously the wait’s killing me….

  78. 78 Torisangel

    I’ve been a long time lover of this site, but..I’ve never commented. I figured it was about time that I did!

    Did no one else think that Heung-soo set up Nam-soon? You know, at the end when the cops showed up..I felt like Heung-soo’s smirk at the end was also part of that. I also felt like he was testing Nam-soon. I had predicted from around..episode 2..that Nam-soon could obviously fight or he just had some pent up anger he wanted unleash on people, you know, the typical..”I HATE WORLD-GRRAHHH! HULK TIME!” kind of anger. Turns out I was right about the first part. I could also tell..he feels heavily guilty about the past and hence, he does not want it brought up. He’s finally had a sort of normal high school experience, he doesn’t want his past to ruin anything else. He, himself, does not want to ruin anything else either. I really hadn’t expected that Nam-soon was a past gangster/ex-gangster? I just thought he could obviously fight and he might’ve been a bully himself. Either way, I’m glad they brought out Heung-soo while I was completely invested in Nam-soon’s character..otherwise, I really wouldn’t feel too bad or feel too shocked. When the writing makes you actually invest in the characters, you can tell then, that is some darn good writing.

    I’m not entirely invested in Ha-Kyung, the only time I really like her or feel something other than indifference towards her is her scenes with Kang-Joo and Nam-soon. Her story makes sense, I obviously just can’t connect to it much. Even though all of her family has gone to the top school of the country, she can’t even get into an Elite school? There must be a reason. Not a high enough score on the exam, not enough money (they’ve gone broke and can’t afford it), or even just something as simple as there is someone up there that doesn’t like the family..Am I over-thinking things again? Probably.

    Through all of this angst and high school drama, I hope there will be amends that will be made, progress that will be shown in the characters, and just growth and a little splash of forgiveness too. Heung-soo, it’s too early for me to go too deep into his character, but I’m really hoping that the little splash of forgiveness will done with him and Nam-soon..Nam-soon really needs to forgive himself first, otherwise..there is no true forgiveness. I also echo a lot of people when I say this..he feels like he maybe doesn’t deserve a good life, friends, or anything good that comes his way anymore…When it comes to being hit, he seems to be okay with that more than the good things..Heung-soo’s bummed leg..definitely his fault or partially. And by Heung-soo’s comment on him running away..Nam-soon seems to have ran away when it happened, was he scared? Anyone would be scared in that situation to me, but it’s cowardly, nonetheless. He seems entirely too guilty for it to not be, anyways, forgiveness is the only key in this that will unlock our character’s growth. I’m glad they brought in Heung-soo.

    Jung-oh..he seems like a little boy trying to play dress up as a gangster next to Heung-soo and Nam-soon..Jung-oh seems to have a lot of problems, but not some that can’t be fixed when he is taken out of the enviroment he is in and with a little love and understanding..That’s where In-jae comes in..I’m really rooting she’ll give Jung-oh the love and patience he needs, but it’s obvious that she’ll need help with that, *cough* Se-chan*cough*. I can’t really say Jung-oh is bad guy or even that Heung-soo is..they’re both complicated characters that can’t be labelled or uncomplicated by saying they’re the bad guys or they’re the bullies. I love going deep into a character that’s been written though and giving my point of view on it, and on what they’re like underneath all of that exterior, stripping them down piece by piece..Yum..~ Oops, mind wandered off a bit there..

    Honestly, can’t seem to like Se-chan so much, but I feel like In-jae hit the nail on the head when she said he was scared of responsibility. If you don’t really care about your students, they really won’t care about you. They’re humans just like adults and they know when you don’t really care about them. It’ll take time for me to really invest in In-jae and Se-chan though. And even though everyone seems to find Kang-joo annoying..I personally love her. Just about anyone would’ve abandoned their friend if said friend treated them like that..AND lied or hid stuff from them. She never gave up on her friend though, that’s real friendship right there.

    Anyways, love School 2013, it gives such a unique view on high school life and on the angst that everyone seems to go through when they are in high school. Now..did I miss anything? ;D

    • 78.1 pogo

      Nam-soon really needs to forgive himself first, otherwise..there is no true forgiveness. I also echo a lot of people when I say this..he feels like he maybe doesn’t deserve a good life, friends, or anything good that comes his way anymore…

      yeah, I sensed that self-loathing last episode, but you really see it in full force here – Nam-soon wailing on Jung-ho kind of looks like he’s really taking it out on himself. And ita about Jung-ho suddenly looking like a little boy once Heung-soo walked in.

      As for Ha-kyung, you’re right, I can’t care too much about her apart from her Kang-joo/Nam-soon scenes, but maybe now we’ve started to get what drives her, it might be easier to care?

      • 78.1.1 Torisangel

        The self-loathing radiates off that boy like someone who was rolled in ham and dropped in honey, any dog paying attention in a one mile radius could sniff that out now in this episode like you said. He really is literally beating the dog poo out of himself also.

        I really really want to care about her. I want to care about all of these characters, even the nasty ones. I just hope she has deeper side now that we’ve found out what gets her moving and doing what she does. I hope I can begin to care for her and everyone can too, because whether we like it or not..She’s probably going to be important.

        • pogo

          You know what that scene reminded me of? There’s a scene in Season 4 of Buffy, where two people have switched bodies and are beating up on each other (which basically —-> beating up on your own body while you’re in someone else’s) and the girl who has the upper hand in the fight starts beating the life out of her own body while telling the other girl she’s worthless, but it’s so clear she’s really talking about herself.

          Sorry, that was confusing. But yeah, it didn’t take a lot to see that Nam-soon has serious self-esteem/self-loathing issues.

  79. 79 pogo

    FINALLY caught up, and this show still rocks my world. I can’t believe I was expecting it to be a trendy, I mean it has all the trappings of one – hot young people, nice clothes, catchy soundtrack….but the feel is just not at ALL like a trendy.

    I’m loving Kang-joo and her chemistry with both Nam-soon and Heung-soo (could totally ship them with both!) and her friendship with Ha-kyung (which is fantastic – girl bonding <3). But I also love Ha-kyung and Nam-soon's vibe right now, they've been set up to be an OTP but the journey there is one to look forward to. And with Heung-soo's arrival, the shakeup things have got is awesome. Nam-soon's past was something I guessed at from the minute HS said the best fighter wasn't him, but it was still a shock to see it go into action. And I like how the show's handling the teachers so far, too – maybe three OTPs are too many, but I ship everyone in this drama, lol.

    Also this:

    It’s kind of like watching the nature channel, where the dogs also have detention and math homework.

    JB, you were nearly responsible for my premature death.

  80. 80 beckster

    I love this show. I haven’t been this into a drama since Answer Me 1997, not long, I know, but long enough in dramaland.

    Looking back on the previous episode to when Nam Soon said he wanted to throw himself away makes me thing he used to have something to live for, even if it was a gang. The thing with gangs is that they are, in my mind, similar to the army. The members are comrades, sharing in something special that is different than everyone else. It always gives someone to lean on, and be leaned on in return. I know there are plenty of negative aspects but, being a drama, I’m trying to look at the positive.

    So maybe Nam Soon had friends, a family of sort, in Heung Soo and the gang? Then a tragedy (clearly) and the end of his world. With an potentially abusive, alcoholic father and a, so far, non-existent mother, he may have hit rock bottom, wallowed for a year, then realised there was nothing for it except to do SOMETHING, anything, even if it was simply going through the motions at school.

    Reason for this thinking? Well, he’s too…emotionless? I guess complacent would be the better word. He breaks out of his shell on occasion for Young Woo and In Jae but other wise seems to want to, like Heung Soo, graduate quietly. But I don’t think he would be like this if he had not had something before. He knows how it feels to be happy and has lost that. I feel as though if he was in a gang for the sake of being in a gang, and just to suck up to the jjang for kicks and beat up innocent kids for the heck of it there would not be such an utter lack of emotion.

    He probably just doesn’t want to do it all over again, screw up his life and someone else’s.

    Anyways, there’s my two cents. I’m a similar lurker but non-commentator. And I’m suuuuuper pumped now that most, but not all *sighs for waiting for Monday…evening and wiggles of excitement for unfolding drama* the cards are on the table.

    • 80.1 inxomnia

      Oh my, your comment about the gangs.. just reminds me of all those gangster fanfics I used to read. Hot damn. Now Nam Soon being a gangster is suddenly hot. Gosh, I need to control these nostalgic adolescent feels. And this will ruin me, but I find Jong Suk hotter than Woo Bin… cos I don’t find Woo Bin hot… so now I’m just afraid of the potential he has to ruin Nam Soon’s life…. :(

  81. 81 verte

    I love this drama

  82. 82 kpshyazn

    oh man… that smile from Heung Soo was SO epic. It reeked of VICTORY as he baited himself to get Nam Soon to go berserk.

    • 82.1 Esther

      Yeahhh….at that moment i was like damn.. is he even afraid of anything…to go to such great lengths….because of him i dumped nam soon as my favourite character…
      This drama is simply awesome…before this drama i was never annoyed by the week long wait for dramas..but this one has kicked the patience out of me…
      Arrgh is it monday already?

  83. 83 bellebyul

    Thanks a bunch for the recap! I have to say – I love love love this drama! Also i’ve been a long time visitor/reader of this site but I never commented so I figured, why not!

    I saw the recap when skimming through dramabeans and decided to give this drama a chance…And I sped through the 4 episodes in two days. And then came back here to read the recap.

    After watching Nice Guy, I wanted to find something that had equivalent depth to the story. As much as I love the quick/fast pace stories that help just pass time, I wanted something that I could invest my time in. Something that drew my attention because of acting, plot and backbone. Granted Nice Guy wasn’t a typical drama I would watch, it had a backbone (even with some bruises here and there), and the story continued with that structure. ( On the side note: I loved Song Joong Ki and Moon Chae Won before, and with Nice Guy I was brimming with amazement – lol I felt like I was a mom that is proud of their kid’s first piano recital or something.)

    All the characters are so layered and it is amazing how we are learning something new with each new action or response the character says! I’m excited to see what happens to Nam Soon and Heung Soo’s friendship. or the lack of it currently. They both clearly have feelings for each other. lol Just kidding, but I love Nam Soon, even with his change of his character – something made him act mature until now. How did Heung Soo cause him to change so suddenly? Also the fact that he fought because he saw Heung Soo in danger, means that they have a special relationship that was broken and fragile now, but it still exists, never truly wavering. I’m worried for both of them!

    Se Chan and In Jae – could these two be more adorable. Even with their polar opposite p.o.v., I really hope they change one another a bit. And I’m a sucker for people who become better people because of how they feel for each other!

    Ha Kyung and Kang Joo are just too adorable – I love seeing that they are besties that have legit times when they want to be angry at each other but still need to tell each other important gossip.

    Jung ho and his posse – well, they have some growing up to do with how to respect elders. But truthfully out of all of them, Jung ho might be the hardest tree to tame, but probably will bring a strong arc to how current students are in high school and the troubles they go through inside and out of school.

    long story short – Thanks dramabeans!! and thanks for all the people that survived reading my long post all the way to the bottom. gold star for you. :) :)

  84. 84 Byul

    it’s really twisted how Nam Soon beating up Jung Ho almost made me feellike he had finally got what he had deserved. I love the way this show plays with my emotions, from how hard it is differentiating what’s wrong(beating him up) and what’s right(he finally paid him back for being such a violent bully). And yeah. I don’t think I could handle Heung Soo if it weren’t Kim Woo Bin’s gorgeous self*dies*

  85. 85 inxomnia

    I had a hunch during their ‘talk’ at the back of the school that Nam Soon used to be a gangster. But damn, that fight – now THAT escalated quickly. Gah, I don’t want Nam Soon to be the baddie, he’s just so hot as the quiet and indifferent guy. WHY DOES HE HAVE TO BE THIS TORMENTED SOUL LIKE EVERY KDRAMA LEAD HAS TO BE? Makes me sad. I know they will do great things with this twist, but damn, I’m connecting with this boy! Dreams shattered now. School 2013 really does just hook you in and then takes you on a rollercoaster ride. Grr. I always watch dramas and hate all the dramatic bits, because I just love the characters, sigh.

  86. 86 MicolaM

    I don’t understand the whole illegal tutoring thing. Is it illegal to tutor while being a teacher in Korea?

  87. 87 Nikutapi

    I really need two know the name of the song in the end when the police arrived 😁

  88. 88 RainbowFish

    Omo, I love this! Reading your recaps is like discovering School 2013 all over again. It’s fantastic!

  89. 89 Ann

    when Lee Jong Seok did “..flower boys?” !!!! He’s SO damn cool!!!

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