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105

A Moment at Eighteen: Episode 6

With mid-terms upon them, our high school students can’t afford any distractions but matters of the heart are never well timed. Our transfer student frets that he’s missed his chance with the girl that he likes but that doesn’t stop him from setting a trap for his nemesis. The class president can sense that his grip on the school is weakening but his top priority is keeping his #1 position in order to protect his strongest ally.

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EPISODE 6: “The Timing of Action and Reaction”

Shocked by Soo-bin’s unexpected confession, Joon-woo rolls away on his bike, completely out of control. When Joon-woo falls, an alarmed Soo-bin asks if he’s okay but he’s more concerned about Bumbi. Soo-bin realizes that Joon-woo is talking about his bike and teasingly introduces herself while Ro-mi watches with interest.

Unable to ride Bumbi, Joon-woo walks with Soo-bin but he can’t seem to say a word while Soo-bin regrets saying anything. They speak at the same time and when Joon-woo urges Soo-bin to go first, she assumes that she’s just been rejected.

Hoping to lessen her embarrassment, Soo-bin claims that she was just kidding. When Soo-bin walks away, Joon-woo manages to ask, “Are you really going to leave home?” After admitting that he overheard Soo-bin and her mother, the poor girl is so humiliated that she scurries away while Joon-woo scolds himself for not sharing how he feels.

Joon-woo arrives at work just in time to catch Ji-min talking on the phone, “That’s right. Relationships are all about timing.” Joon-woo feels even worse about his inability to talk to Soo-bin and as he heads for the back room, Ji-min shouts a warning that the girl with the super hot boyfriend is wicked.

Soo-bin is studying with her friends and when she sighs, they assume that she’s upset because of her mother. Da-hwin urges Soo-bin to call her mom but she’s decided not to go home and asks which of her friends will let her stay the night. The girls avoid her question and Chan-yeol tries to change the subject by reminding the others that Ro-mi is taking the level test.

After Ro-mi completes her level test, she sees Soo-bin’s mother talking with Tutor Sohn. Ro-mi introduces herself and Soo-bin’s mom is furious when she returns to her car. Soo-bin’s mom recalls what Ro-mi had to say, “Thanks to Soo-bin quitting Mr. Sohn’s class, I was given an opportunity,” and she takes out her frustration on the steering wheel.

At work, Joon-woo sketches a picture of Soo-bin and thinks about her confession. Ro-mi walks by and at the sight of Joon-woo, decides that Soo-bin shouldn’t have it all. Ro-mi walks into the convenience store and flirts with Joon-woo but he doesn’t even remember her name. Heh.

After countless interruptions, Ro-mi loses her patience and walks out. She wonders, “How can he not know my name if he likes me,” and then tells herself that names aren’t important to boys. A car pulls up and the driver asks Ro-mi about the level test. When Joon-woo runs out to return Ro-mi’s things, the driver smiles and introduces himself as Ro-mi’s father.

As he drives away, Ro-mi’s dad calls Joon-woo a good kid for working part-time and going to school. When Ro-mi scolds him for speaking up, he asks, “Does he think I’m your driver too?”

That night, Joon-woo makes a delivery at the academy just as Sang-hoon heads for the roof. When Joon-woo joins him, Sang-hoon proudly shows off some new shoes that he worked hard to buy. Sang-hoon senses that Joon-woo has something to say but when he mentions Tutor Sohn’s watch, Sang-hoon protests, “I don’t want to get involved in that.” He doesn’t deny it when Joon-woo guesses that Sang-hoon saw Hwi-young take the watch.

Joon-woo asks what happened that day and Sang-hoon recalls how Tutor Sohn complimented his math skills. Sang-hoon explains that kind of thing drives Hwi-young crazy and adds, “He’s done that a few times before too. He completely loses his mind when he’s upset. Every time, his mom stepped in and covered up for him.”

As he locks up Bumbi at his place, Joon-woo pledges, “Hwi-young, I’ll have to reveal who you really are. I have to put things right.”

From Chan-yeol’s bedroom, Soo-bin texts back and forth with her mother. Soo-bin types, “I’ll live my own life. I’m 18 now…You should live your own life too. Bye,” but she panics when she thinks the text went through.

So-ye and Da-hwin join the party and even though Chan-yeol grumbles that they should be studying, she throws pajamas at the girls. The girls’ pajama party is underway when Ki-tae texts So-ye that he’s outside her place.

Bothered by the argument that Soo-bin had with her mother, Joon-woo texts, “You didn’t run away from home, did you?” Instead of a response from Soo-bin, Joon-woo gets a text from Oh-je who offers to bring him some tteokbokki after he delivers food for Soo-bin’s gang at Chan-yeol’s house.

Joon-woo texts Oh-je that he’ll try the tteokbokki another time but now he’s really worried about Soo-bin. Certain that she’ll go home eventually, Joon-woo doesn’t like the idea of her walking home alone late at night. Joon-woo tosses a coin to decide if he should walk her home and then ignores the result. After texting Oh-je for Chan-yeol’s address, Joon-woo gives himself a pep talk, “Joon-woo, you’ve got this. I’ll respond properly this time.”

So-ye texts Ki-tae that she’s spending the night with the girls at Chan-yeol’s place and Ki-tae immediately texts Hwi-young with the information.

So-ye is still awake when Ki-tae texts that he’s in front of Chan-yeol’s place. Soo-bin is awake too, her head filled with thoughts of her mother. So-ye grabs her backpack and explains that her mother came to pick her up. So-ye join Ki-tae outside and when they smile at each other, all is forgiven.

Soo-bin grabs her uniform and tiptoes out of Chan-yeol’s bedroom. On his way to Chan-yeol’s place, Joon-woo worries that he may be overreacting but some drunks on the street convince him that he’s doing the right thing.

Soo-bin walks out of Chan-yeol’s place and is startled when Hwi-young taps her on the shoulder. Hwi-young explains that he’s there to walk her home and when Joon-woo sees them together, he sighs, “I’m so sluggish.”

On the walk to her place, Soo-bin asks Hwi-young about the meeting with Joon-woo and the counselor. Hwi-young claims that the counselor just wanted to discuss Joon-woo’s reasons for hitting him. When Hwi-young falls silent, Soo-bin teases that he’s acting as if he’s upset but he’s thinking, “You probably have no idea how much of a jerk I am.

Soo-bin gets a smile out of Hwi-young when she calls him “Little Boy Hwi-young”. Hwi-young wistfully recalls, “I liked it when I used to be your Little Boy Hwi-young. When I could vent to you about everything.” Talking about when they were kids inspires Soo-bin to suggest a race to her place and Hwi-young laughs when she gives herself a generous head start.

Soo-bin gets home and finds her mother waiting. She asks her mother for another chance and promises to get into the top tier for math. Mom argues that there’s no time for mistakes but Soo-bin cozies up to her and jokes that her arm swelled up until it looked like Ma Dong-seok’s. Soo-bin’s humor successfully improves her mother’s mood.

When Hwi-young gets home, his father is waiting to criticize him for going out. As Hwi-young heads upstairs, his father mentions, “Your home room teacher can’t return to school because he’s hospitalized, right?” Hwi-young explains that the assistant teacher is now the official home room teacher but his father walks away without a word. Hwi-young’s mother is waiting in his room and warns that he may never get to see Soo-bin if he steps out like that again. Hwi-young’s mom settles down on the couch with a book to supervise Hwi-young’s studies.

In her room, Soo-bin reads Joon-woo’s text and buries her face in her hands, “Soo-bin. Why did you have to say that…This whole day has been humiliating.”

Joon-woo returns to his rooftop and recalls seeing Soo-bin with Hwi-young. When he remembers Soo-bin’s denial about being Hwi-young’s girlfriend, he mutters, “Soo-bin, you’re a liar.” As he lays back on the low table, Joon-woo can hear Soo-bin’s explanation that she was kidding and asks himself, “It was a lie, right?”

The next day, Bumbi is back in action and Joon-woo waits by the bike rack until Soo-bin arrives at school to ask why she never answered his text. Soo-bin is saved from having to make an excuse when Chan-yeol, So-ye and Ro-mi join them. Relieved, Soo-bin blurts out, ” Bumbi’s all better,” and explains it’s the name of Joon-woo’s bike as he protests, “That’s a secret.” Chan-yeol is immediately suspicious but Soo-bin and Joon-woo are quick to deny that there’s anything between them.

As the girls walk away, Ro-mi points out, “See? He turns all red whenever he sees me.” When So-ye asks Ro-mi how she did on her level test, it reminds her that Soo-bin’s mother was at the academy and that she looked angry.

As Mr. Oh heads for his classroom, he remembers telling Hwi-young to return the desks to their normal arrangement. When Mr. Oh sees that the seating hasn’t been corrected, Hwi-young explains, “We’ll stay in these seats. That’s what everyone wants.” Mr. Oh asks if anyone’s unhappy with the new arrangement and when Joon-woo raises his hand, Oh-je and Soo-bin follow suit.

The vice-principal isn’t happy with the noise coming from Mr. Oh’s classroom as the desks are returned to their usual places. Mr. Oh invites everyone who agrees with Hwi-young to remain in front and allows everyone else to choose a seat. Before Joon-woo can sit next to Soo-bin, Ro-mi gives up her spot to sit with him. Mr. Oh is delighted when Pil-sang is forced to join the students in the front but Hwi-young is beside himself.

During a break, Ki-tae and Hwi-young discuss Mr. Oh’s annoying attitude until they see Sang-hoon showing off his new shoes. Sang-hoon notices Hwi-young and asks, “Are you studying hard for your midterms,” and when he’s ignored, Sang-hoon calls out, “I’ll rob you of first place.”

In the middle of math class, Da-hwin notices Ro-mi helping Joon-woo and texts the others, “Look at them. All lovey-dovey.” Convinced that Joon-woo really does like Ro-mi, Soo-bin drops her head on her desk with a thud and then sheepishly assures everyone that she’s all right.

After school, Oh-je tells Joon-woo that Ki-tae has them cleaning more areas and Joon-woo guesses that it’s because of him. Oh-je pauses when he sees the math teacher with Sang-hoon and explains, “The math teacher must be really scared of Hwi-young…They have to meet behind Hwi-young’s back because he’s so jealous.

Joon-woo sees Shim-bok offering to do Hwi-young’s chores so that Hwi-young can study. Another boy approaches Shim-bok with a message for Hwi-young, “The math teacher wants you to come to the math office.”

Hwi-young walks in just as the math teacher calls Sang-hoon his favorite student. He’s convinced that if Sang-hoon switched to the natural sciences track, he’d easily become the top student. Sang-hoon tells the teacher, “I’ll make sure Hwi-young doesn’t get the highest grades here…You have no idea how fun it is to trample on Hwi-young.”

Hwi-young makes his presence known and the confused math teacher has to explain that he didn’t send for him. Hwi-young excuses himself but out in the hallway, it’s clear that he’s enraged.

Joon-woo watches Hwi-young make a beeline for Sang-hoon’s locker and he stays close when Hwi-young throws away Sang-hoon’s new shoes. Joon-woo is waiting when Hwi-young returns without the shoes, “So this is the issue you have. If someone gets on your nerves, you have to get rid of the thing that person treasures the most to feel relieved.”

Hwi-young calls it a prank but Joon-woo asks if taking the tutor’s watch, framing him for it and getting him expelled was a prank too. Hwi-young laughs and asks what he intends to do and Joon-woo confesses, “I will make you feel sorry. For those who you’ve looked down on.”

Ki-tae shows up in time to keep Hwi-young from advancing on Joon-woo. Joon-woo explains that he sent for Ki-tae so that they can plant Sang-hoon’s shoes just like they did with the watch. When Joon-woo walks away, Ki-tae has to stop Hwi-young from going after him.

As Soo-bin and her friends leave school, Ro-mi runs up and accuses Soo-bin of making sure that she failed the level test. When Soo-bin denies it, Ro-mi suggests that it must have been her mother.

Oh-je and Joon-woo run over when the argument escalates but Soo-bin is shaken when Ro-mi collapses on Joon-woo, so she walks away. Joon-woo hands Ro-mi off to Oh-je, who’s forced to sit her down on the grass when Da-hwin barks, “Put her down.” Chan-yeol catches up to Soo-bin by the bike rack to remind her that’s just how Ro-mi is. Soo-bin thinks about Joon-woo and Ro-mi and covers her face as she laments, “I regret it.”

That night, Mr. Oh reviews Hwi-young’s student record and sees his long list of awards and recognitions. When he remembers Joon-woo’s claim that Hwi-young is controlling Ki-tae, Mr. Oh tries to reach the former home room teacher but he’s still not taking calls. After hanging up, Mr. Oh looks thoughtful when he sees that the awards and recognitions section of Joon-woo’s file is empty.

On the eve of the mid-terms, all of the students arrive at school to study for their exams. Soo-bin avoids looking at Joon-woo while So-ye gets up to meet Ki-tae in the dance room. Ki-tae hands So-ye a notebook that lists everything that she needs to memorize for the exams, an exact duplicate of his study notebook. Ki-tae encourages So-ye, “Let’s do well on this exam.”

With no interest in studying, Pil-sang teases Oh-je and Da-hwin until Ro-mi announces that she can’t concentrate. Joon-woo sketches Soo-bin’s back but he hides the drawing when Ro-mi glances at him.

When Joon-woo arrives at work, his mother is there to take his shift so that he can go home and study. Joon-woo’s mother is about to take Joon-woo to a cram academy until Ji-min reminds her that her shift is about to start. A reluctant Joon-woo goes home while his mother gets some much needed training.

At home, Joon-woo finishes his sketch of Soo-bin with a message, “Yoo Soo-bin, good luck.” He’s not the only one hoping for Soo-bin to excel because her mother is overjoyed when she offers her daughter some red ginseng but Soo-bin is too focused to notice. Soo-bin empties the pouch when she’s alone and reminds herself, “Math. Top tier.”

Hwi-young studies as his mother dozes on the couch. In class, Hwi-young checks the answer sheets of other students and changes his answers until his father takes his answer sheet. Hwi-young wakes up with a start after the father in his dream threatens, “I said I’d kill you if you didn’t get the highest marks on the exams.”

Hwi-young’s father leans on his son’s desk and wants to know, “How will you manage to get top marks if you’re going to sleep this much?” Hwi-young’s mother jumps up to explain that Hwi-young was just taking a break but his father calls them pathetic good-for-nothings and warns, “If you lose your first place spot, I’ll kick both of you out of the house naked.”

Hwi-young’s father hits his son in the back of the head with his wife’s book and she flinches when he returns it. When he leaves, Hwi-young scratches at his rash while his mother does her best to calm him down.

The next day, the math exam is well underway when Soo-bin experiences some serious pain. Soo-bin asks to see the nurse but when she can’t stand up, Joon-woo offers to carry her and cuts his hand when he grabs Soo-bin’s desk for support.

Joon-woo runs out with Soo-bin but with twenty minutes left in the exam, he asks the teacher if Soo-bin can finish it in the nurse’s office. Joon-woo assures Soo-bin that she’ll be able to complete her exam as he runs but she’s distracted by his warm back.

While the nurse examines Soo-bin, the teacher walks in with Soo-bin’s and Joon-woo’s tests. Joon-woo completes his test in the waiting area while Soo-bin works on her exam at a table pulled up to her bed.

After the teacher leaves with their answer sheets, Joon-woo checks on Soo-bin, who apologizes for costing him precious exam time. She smiles when Joon-woo confesses that he couldn’t solve anything on the last page anyway.

Before he leaves, Joon-woo picks up Soo-bin’s pen from the floor. Soo-bin notices the cut on Joon-woo’s hand and after urging him to get it treated, Joon-woo sits down to wait for the nurse’s return.

Soo-bin uses the opportunity to suggest that Joon-woo should forget about what she said but he interrupts to say, “Me too.” When Joon-woo explains, “I was going to say this then too,” Soo-bin thinks that she knows what he’s trying to say.

Soo-bin gets up to get some water and encourages Joon-woo not to feel bad but he tells her, “I like you.” Joon-woo walks over to a stunned Soo-bin, and confesses, “I like you too.” While Soo-bin stares at Joon-woo, he repeats, “I like you.”

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COMMENTS

Poor Soo-bin. She’s so humiliated by her mother’s school visit and Joon-woo’s imagined rejection that she can hardly keep her mind on her studies. Add to that Ro-mi’s determination to have everything that Soo-bin has and it’s a miracle that she didn’t collapse from a severe stomach-ache before mid-terms began. But being in distress in the middle of the all important math exam gave Joon-woo the chance to shine as a hero when he not only ran Soo-bin to the nurse’s office, he arranged it so that she could finish her test. Plus, he finally got the opportunity to clarify Soo-bin’s misconception that he’s not interested in her, quite the contrary.

In spite of the crossed wires that had Soo-bin and Joon-woo so preoccupied, Joon-woo made serious progress in his campaign to reveal Hwi-young’s true nature. He gained some valuable insight from Sang-hoon and set up a trap that proved his theory, Hwi-young strikes out at people who anger him by stealing something that they treasure. It was too easy for Joon-woo to pull Hwi-young’s strings and I imagine it’s only a matter of time before Hwi-young unravels publicly.

Even though his behavior can’t be excused, Hwi-young is under unimaginable pressure to maintain his top ranking or he and his mother are in real danger. That terrifying dream with his father, only to wake up and find the monster only inches away in his room. And even though the threats are very real and incredibly frightening, keeping his top ranking may be out of Hwi-young’s reach this time around because for the first time, Sang-hoon is anxious to prove himself.

Joon-woo is like a rock that’s been tossed into a still pond, leaving nothing undisturbed and Sang-hoon’s determination to prove to Hwi-young what he’s capable of is only one of the ripples. Mr. Oh is trying to reach the previous home room teacher to ask about the students but he’s never successful. Hmmm. In the meantime, Mr. Oh is challenging Hwi-young for control of Class 3 while reaching out to the marginalized students, especially Joon-woo. Soo-bin hasn’t been the same since the day that her mother almost hit Joon-woo with her car and her feelings only intensify her unease around her mother and Hwi-young, who both think that they know what’s best for her. And Hwi-young’s influence is ever so slowly weakening thanks to a certain “punk” who has very little to lose.

I think one of the underlying themes in A Moment at Eighteen is greed and the attempts of those who aren’t greedy to protect themselves from being overtaken. Soo-bin, Joon-woo and Mr. Oh aren’t greedy but they’re not willing to be sacrificed in the race for more, more, more where accomplishments and accolades are never enough. There’s alway someone who’s smarter (Sang-hoon), more accomplished, wealthier or more desperate. When does anyone get the chance to enjoy their accomplishments in the never ending race to the top? The delicate balance at this high school has been disturbed and we’ll soon learn just how much things have changed.

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Kyaaaa that triple confession! I didn't want romance in this drama at first, but these two are so cute and their crush is so appropriate for that moment of being eighteen years old that I'm converted. It totally fits in the story. Bumbi Love <3

Okay, now this: I honestly don't know how Ro-mi got the idea that Joon-woo likes her. Did she assume he was flirting with her when he honestly did not know her name? I thought I had missed something but no. He never showed any interest in her.

Thanks for the recap @teriyaki! I'm loving this little show.

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RoMi is living in an illusion. She wants what’s SooBin has. Her background, her friends and now the guy who likes her.

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Ro Mi thinks that every boy must like her because of her looks. She's delusional. I'm thinking that if it continues, she's may be quite ill.

I wonder where and how she started to target Soo Bin as her rival and to have the auto-reflex reaction that anything bad that happens is Soo Bin's fault. It's worrying.

Among her delusions: that whatever she does is bound to be good. If she does badly it's because someone else sabotaged her.

Is her father really a driver or is he the boss who owns the car? I'm thinking that he's a driver and she's ashamed to admit it to her friends. (Don't know where, but I had the impression that she was supposed to be rich. Now I wonder if she really lives in a grand house or whether she's in the servants' quarters.)

I hated the way she treated her dad, calling him her driver, sitting in the back seat as if she's the boss, chastising him for revealing their relationship. The dad is also at fault for giving way to her, and for not taking issue with her attitude and correcting her as well.

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I just read the father situation as Ro Mi wanting to be the best, and be rich, and be seen as more rich than she possibly is and having everything, but her father just drives her everywhere instead of actually having a driver and she sees this as demeaning. They don't seem poor but having a driver means a higher STATUS right.

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I think she is playing rich. This is the 3rd drama I've seen this in. School 2017 and Goong both have it.

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I think she playing rich, because in earlier episode she commented that Soo Bin has it easy due to privileges and special treatment. So it's her explanation, even if untrue, she is failing because doesn't have perks that Soo Bin enjoys.

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I wished Ro-mi's dad was revealed in front of Soo-bin's mom because after rubbing in Soo-bin quitting Teacher Son's class, Ro-mi told Mom, "My driver ajusshi is here." Then Dad introduces himself to Mom, "Are you a parent at Ro-mi's school? I'm Ro-mi’s dad." I can't wait until Ro-mi gets her own.

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Ro Mi is a brat who just wants whatever that's not hers and the way she treats her dad is horrible. I dont know why he lets her behave that way. And the girl gang seems pretty nice but they dont see her true nature. I was so happy when Soo Bin somewhat fought back when Ro Mi blamed her for failing the test. I look forward to see more of Soo Bin's fighting spirit.

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I figured Soo-bin would understand "Me too" was his answer to her confession especially after Joon-woo explained, "I was going to say this then too" as in "I was going to say, 'Me too' then too."

I laughed at how Joon-woo went through all of Soo-bin's friends' names, Da-hwin even twice (Jung, which is actually Oh-je's surname, and Kwon), except for Hwang Ro-mi when Ro-mi could have saved herself the embarrassment by showing Joon-woo her name tag.

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That was such a sweet confession. These two are just so awkwardly adorable, and I love them. And Bumbi too!!

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They are the best! I'm loving it so much.

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My favorite character is now BumBi, even though it caused Joon-woo to fall and not be adorably awkward after Soo-Bin’s confession (he still was, just less than what it could’ve been). BumBi has been the MVP from the biking Soo-Bin scene to something that is being kept a secret between our two leads.

Also, THEY’RE. SO. FLIPPING.CUTE.
I can’t wait for next week’s episodes!

@teriyaki, thanks for the recap!

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Are we seeing for the first time, a love triangle between the girl and the boy and his bike? LOL. He's got that secret relationship with Bumbi and the girl had better treat Bumbi well or else.

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@growingbeautifully
Do we now have BOL
to go with TOD / BOD / COD

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So we should have Bike of Love, Truck of Love and Car of Love as counterpoints to BOD, TOD and COD? πŸ˜‚

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So who's the "third wheel"? Bumbi is the most pitiful character; why it has to fall everytime Soo Bin's around?πŸ˜„

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LOL Bumbi only has 2 wheels. Third wheel looks to be Soo Bin since Joon Woo is pretty sweet on Bumbi currently. :-D

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lol @ pun

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I really want to know how he came up with Bumbi.
It is like one of those names you call babies.

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Right??! Maybe Soo-Bin will help us out and ask him the origin of the name. That would be a super fun and cute scene.

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The unspoken words, hesitation and misunderstandings between Soo-bin and Joon-woo were the highlight of the episode. It took me back to my teenage days when I too had crushes on guys in my class and couldn't say anything. It was realistic and cute, and a memory of a more innocent time.

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I really liked how that was done as well. I somehow found it really relatable even though I've never dated.

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I thought you dropped it Greenie lol :P :P

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Somehow I did not. Though episode 4 was very disturbing.

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Hehehe I'm glad you didn't!

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*signal is favourite drama*
"episode 4 was very disturbing!"
πŸ˜‚

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πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚
Signal IS my favorite, but not as disturbing as this I am no longer sure why; now that you mention is Signal is indeed pretty disturbing but I don't recall being THIS disturbed.

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@greenfields ... "not as disturbing as this"... need I remind you what HAPPENED in Signal? Apparently not; you got there yourself... haha.
It is curious you were disturbed more by this than Signal; I wonder why hmm

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@greenfields
I love how this writer uses that swirling world of teenageness to stop the the drama getting sucked into Makjang deadends.

Its so real how that teenage "centre-of-the-universe" where normality is as all consuming as the drama plot...and we are happy to dwell in that teenage awkwardness before being smacked in the head by the drama again.

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I usually get so annoyed when writers throw in this many misunderstanding and ALMOST explanations, but damn if that's not how it's like when you're young and have a new crush. It also took me back!

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yes!! for once, the misunderstandings feel sooo... life-like! so real! oh, does it take me back to my youthful days!

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Thanks @teriyaki

I like how this show sets up the situation and moves to resolve it within the episode or a couple of episodes.

I thought that Joon Woo was very proactive and quite scary in his own way as he engineered riling up HY and observed HY's reactions.

I'm wondering how come HY can get access to just anyone's locker.

If Sang Hoon's shoes don't get returned before he finds out, I'm wondering what SH will do. This time it's his prized, personal stuff that was taken. He will not keep still and he has that secret about HY that he can reveal. If HY were more right-thinking, he'd return the shoes stat.

The uncertainties and awkwardness of being 18 was done just right. Wanting to preserve one's pride, keep up an image and not be embarrassed are such big things at that age.

JW's mum does not know quite what to do, but it's so great that she bothers to keep coming to see him and to support him in any way that she can. It embarrasses him, but in the years to come, these will be a warm memory of how his mum cared for him.

At least she's not the totally selfish and needy adult who is leaning on her child, but the naive adult who's trying to be a good parent. I salute her!

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Hwi Young spent all the time not prepping for maths memorizing EVERYONE'S locker codes and maybe if he spent more time on maths and less on his school power trip he would be number one...
Jk- Hwi Young has such a bad inferiority complex it hurts me. And his mum ugh. Passive Agressive and emotionally manipulative AF but only because they're both TERRIFIED OF THE DAD.
And now Jun Woo knows how to manipulate Hwi Young too and BOY... that's not gonna end well. How about we all just learn that being number one isn't always best and how to love and respect each other... no? we're gonna slowly destroy each other instead?... ok then.

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Kind of looking forward to the absolute rock bottom Hwi Young is going to experience soon cause it's only up from there, and I love a good redemption arc. JW is in for a wake up call, too. He's showing what a great strategist he is, but will come to realize he's playing with people's lives as well, and maybe have some of his own regrets for what will become of HY, especially once he understands the pressure this kid is under.

If these boys don't end the show as best friends fighting the real villain--the corrupt school system--I know nothing about dramas and will kindly show myself out.

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I don't think JW is being manipulative. He just happens to always be at the right place, at the wright time, to observe Hwi Young unravel a little bit more. And he stands up for himself and lets Hwi Young know that. I wouldn't call that manipulation. As a matter of fact, JW is all too aware that there are several lives involved and much more to life than high school. The kid is essentially an old soul in a kid's body + some teenage angst.

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I thought it was Ki Tae that had the locker access, but then Hwi Young got the shoes. These characters feel so real and young it makes me feel so protective of them, lol.

I love his mom.

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I think Sang Hoon anticipate some kind of retaliation from HY, although the way the scene was shoot I don't know who was the one sending the boy on errand to HY, SH or JW.

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My guess is that JW did it. He was out to discover what pushed HY's buttons and what his reaction would be. Hearing that HY goes crazy when Sang Hoon gets praised, he put it to the test and stood by to observe.

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But on the other hand SH seems entirely unsuprised seeing HY coming into his secret "tutoring", but from the way it was shot I agree it seems like it was JW.

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I aint gonna lie when Ro Mi was all "but why would he not know my name if he likes me?!" I was like "bitch WHAT When Where How No".
I then realised that the fact that this entirely adorable boy was always staring at Soo Bin all day every day was seen by the other girls as him liking Ro Mi because she sits next to Soo Bin (although this wasn't hinted at earlier) but really... teenagers are so dim.

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@sicarius
"teenagers are so dim" = anyone smitten is so dim

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like yes. but also. teenagers.

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That's a possibility @sicarius I re-watched to be sure, Ro Mi was one row behind Soo Bin. Dal Hee sat next to Soo Bin. However the general direction of his look might have been misinterpreted. Or Ro Mi is known as the class beauty so any eyes that turn towards Ro Mi's side of the class MUST be looking at her!!! LOL.

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*why did I think Ro Mi sat next to Soo Bin, ach well* Still she's got issues. But then everyone in this drama does... that's kinda the point.

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Is Ro Mi the class beauty? I got the impression that that is Soo-bin, but none of the guys (except Joon-woo) are vying for her because everyone knows Hwi-young likes her.

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Nah they mentioned in... episode 3? or something... that she's supposed to be The Most BeAuuutiful. Or rather, she herself thinks that... and Pilsang also says she's the most.

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Re. Soobin, I think there's an unspoken rule among the boys that since Hwiyoung likes her and does everything to make it appear that she is his girlfriend, she's already off limits.

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Yes, this was the case. And Soo Bin disliked his 'pretending' that they were together.

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Wasn't there something when Pil Sang sat next to Joon Woo? Pil Sang explained that:
Soo-bin was Hwi Young's
Ro-Mi was the class beauty, HIS crush and not to be touched!
And that the rest of the girls, meh!
lol

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LOL now that you mention it, yes! But isn't that just Pil Sang's pov? That Ro Mi is that class beauty? haha ^^

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That whole texting scene when the other girls were talking about how happy Ro Mi and Joon woo are sitting together and none notice he is completely transfixed on Soo Bin.
When they were picking seats I actually yelled, "Hurry" at him.

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The picking seats scene brought back memories. At school when we were asked to pick a partner, I was always the awkward kid who just stood there not knowing what to do with myself.

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well now isn't this just relatable... ha ha ha...

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We are so cute!!! LOL. I was too ... like, why aren't you running to get the seat next to Soo Bin... and then she had to call another girl over (to hide the fact that she wanted JW to be her seating partner).

Poor Pil Sang, so devoted to Ro Mi, who won't do anything for him except order him around or complain about him.

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You will do anything so that your crush doesn't know that you like him but it won't take you to anywhere. Never dared to take a move because afraid of rejection but never know if he has the same feelings or not.

When you getting old and remember this thing, it will put a smile in your face, thinking that how stupid you were but kind of gives you sad and happy memory of your teenage time.

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@bcampbell1662 I was non-plussed ... how could they not notice that he was not paying Ro Mi any attention at all.

I think she was merely doodling in his book, he was ignoring her, and neither one of them was paying attention to the teacher!

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I was non-plussed at why they even believe Joon-woo likes Ro-mi. Joon-woo has been aloof since the day he transferred; he clearly is not interested in her. "He turns all red whenever he sees me." Ro-mi's friends need to stop feeding her delusions. Her doodling in his book reeked of desperation, and I cheered when Joon-woo conspicuously drew Soo-bin right next to Ro-mi.

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He was waiting for Soobin to pick a seat so that he can go there. Soobin was trying to do it slowly and giving him in enough signals as where where to sit. But both of them a so awkward and slow...Gosh it was frustrating to watch and very funny. And the look of disappointment on JW's face was telling. I wanted to tell him 'you pause you lose'.

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His looks of utter disappointment are quite puppy-like and funny. like a sad deflated life-size balloon; shoulder and head drooping.
lol

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Because she is touted as class beauty and every guy's dream girl.

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Clearly both Junwoo and I have non conventional tastes and completely missed or at least glazed over that fact pffft

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Yeah, but usually teenager are those little lemmings who follow the crowd, I assume that's why Romi pretend to be rich, because all the cool kids in the school are from affluent families, so to be cool kid she must play the part. I don't miss being teenager.

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Mmm I know. I'm just making a joke at my own expense.
I was more of the Jun Woo of the crowd; deliberately isolating myself to protect myself. *sighs*
I don't miss being a teenager either.

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Yeah. I don’t miss that phase either.
I remember all these cool kids and their gangs. I was one of those aloof kids who left school as soon as the bell rang. It didn’t help I transferred schools every two years.
I didn’t care about being β€˜cool’ and in a way am glad I was who I was. I just did well in my studies, had little fun at school and went home to do my own β€˜fun’ things.

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Makes me even more lucky that i finished school such a long time ago as the guys in my class were pretty much all coming from rich families(at that time) yet they were all humble and didn't flaunt their background or things,or i was just lucky i landed on a class like that and the timing were tehnology didn't play such a huge role for us per ex(we played all together not caring about status nor the parents care for that stuff)...

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Oh-je and Joon-woo run over when the argument escalates but Soo-bin is shaken when Ro-mi collapses on Joon-woo, so she walks away. Joon-woo hands Ro-mi off to Oh-je, who’s forced to sit her down on the grass when Da-hwin barks, β€œPut her down.”

I laughed so hard at this scene but Ro-mi and her delulu ideas need to be stopped. Screw you, Ro-mi.

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I don't know whether to face-palm, laugh or worry over someone like Ro Mi. πŸ™„

More seriously: Only 18 and so out of whack with reality ... I wonder if a mental health specialist can share what possible consequences there might be for a young person like this. If she's left on her own and goes even more twisted, what might we end up with?

I hope it's just a harmless imagination overload thing with an overly great ego.

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Her character reminds me of faux rich girl Nam-joo in School 2017, except Ro-mi is more ambitious, assumes things easily, and thinks that she's on the same or even higher level than Soo-bin.

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I think she is another example of how school pressure messes with students heads, she convinced herself that her failures are direct results of other, more affluent students, perks and privileges.

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Yes! That whole progression was really amusing!

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It was really funny because everyone is so done with Ro-mi HAHA

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Oh je is so sweet. He set her down so gently. It did make me laugh that Ro Mi stayed in her swoon through the whole thing.

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I totally understand why Da-hwin likes Oh-je now. I just hope this sweet puppy gets to be happy because he is obviously attracted to Joon-woo.

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He is so sweet. Like how he wanted to bring Joon woo food. If he is gay I really hope they dont leave him with a one sided crush. I wouldn't mind if he didnt have a crush and just really wants a good friend.

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^Same thoughts. I just want the best for him.

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Some random thoughts:

I want a back story on how Joon-woo named his bike. That is seriously the cutest thing.

I love the greenery in this drama. So many pretty trees!

One of my favorite scenes in this episode was the girls’ little slumber party. That was fun πŸ˜€

I feel like So-ye forgave Ki-tae too easily. Paying to have someone beat up is a pretty serious matter. I want to like Ki-tae, but I’m ready for him to break from Hwi-young’s grip.

Hwi-young remains shameless at school, but I feel for his home situation...that is scary.

I kinda want Ro-mi and Pil-sang to end up together lol.

Joon-woo and Soo-bin’s relationship is everything right now. I love it so much 😍

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as sadkdramallama said above... anyone smitten is dim. So Ye is no exception. Lol

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Contrary to us, the audience, So-Ye doesn't see the full extent of Ki-Tae's actions. All she knows is that he's acting like Hwi Young's lackey and she doesn't like that. I doubt that she knows he paid people to beat Joon Woo's friends, etc.

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This drama has been the best thing that has happened to my work stress..I watch all these characters growing up and feel better that I have wrapped this phase and at the same time, look back fondly because I remember..they are all cute and so angsty...and every one of them is awesome..

It is really a slice...I want to comment so much but may be tomorrow..just have time to watch and then read and feel really great.

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Me,too. I'm actually quite late to this and marathoned the six eps only this morning. What a gem of a show. I'm pleasantly surprised by how effective OSW is as Junwoo. KHG is super talented and cute. My heart aches for Hwiyoung. He is to me like the male version of Sooah from Sassy Go Go.

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Pilsang appears to be the cutest and most uncomplicated guy in that classroom.

Everyone including himself, thinks he is the guy who is creating noise in the classroom. I find it so funny when there is any noise, no one looks to find out who may be causing it. All teachers assume it is Pilsang and he is so used to being called out, he is like 'yes', 'it was not me' etc. etc.

I find him so cute.

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ha ha ha
he automatically owned up to disturbing the class, when it wasn't even him!

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I want to protect OJ and his friendship with JW.

I also feel so satisfied with the way JW is managing his own angst. His life has made him emotionally intelligent. It appears that he has never victimized himself. He seems to be resigned to the fact that no one still stand up for him, so he has learnt to stand up for himself.

JW is such a hopeful character. Both his gentleness and toughness brings tears to my eyes.

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I really like that expression. "emotionally intelligent".
brilliant!

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I think this drama is a good parallel with 17 Years Old Condition, how teenagers cope their own sorrow/issue. Everyone has its own way to survive. It's sad because they all seem so lonely.

I'm happy that Soo-bin and Joon-woo saw "the worst" of each other and they can see they still love and are not alone.

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..."the worst"...
I love it that some see this as that level. There are just so many more layers of Dante's circles below and at the moment only JW has been pushed to a level where he has been asked the question (OMG - his strength of character is off the charts).

Sure, each as seen a messy side, but so far each has been strong and moving forward. It says nothing bad about either of them only about the society that label them.

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This episode was the cutest in portraying teenage angst, but it all seemed like calm before the storm with like the things were set in motion.

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Not storyline related but both Ong Seongwu (Choi Junwu) and Shin Seungho (Ma Hwiyoung) nominated as best rookie actor 2019. Lets support them xD

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Shin Seung Ho’s acting definitely got better. I liked him in A-Teen, but his acting was a big cringy there. I’m really liking his role in this drama.

Ong Seong Wu - no words. This boy can make my heart break and next I’d be swooning. That ending.

Oh youth. β™₯️

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The thing is, Ong is the reason I start watching this show. I want to know since he was an actor trainee. But Seungho's acting is also no joke. He gave me goosebumps everytime he did that evil grin and smirk onscreen 😱

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This was such a frustrating ep for me! I can’t stand misunderstandings at all :D
After JW conferonted HY, the look on JW’s face made me wonder if he really wants to do all of these... I feel like he feels a responsibility since he knows the other side of HY
And it kinda amused me how easy SB gave in. I wonder if her mother’s bad behaviour towards JW will be her big wake up call

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Misunderstandings can be frustrating, but I felt like this episode executed it really well. It felt realistic and relatable to me. Plus, it was resolved by the end of the episode, so it wasn't dragged out longer than necessary which was good :)

I too am interested to see how Soo-bin and her mother's dynamic changes after her mother voices her opinion of Joon-woo.

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This is my current fave drama...I dont know, high school dramas tend to be my weakness...I am loving the relationship between Mr. OH and and Joon Woo...and Joon Woo and Soo Bin...I love that Joon Woo is principled and smart and how he intelligently challenges Hwi Young and how Soo Bin is fierce and firm in her own right...this is a high school drama but the lessons conveyed are very relatable for adults

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The confession and the aftermath is so funny and awkward. and funny πŸ˜†πŸ˜†πŸ˜† Finally we are getting some lightness in this drama. Thought I gonna cry in every episode πŸ˜…πŸ˜…

Soobin is such a good daughter. Despite 'running away', she still thinks about her mom and I'm glad they make up. But mom do need to gives her chance to proves herself before taking such drastic measure.

Joonwoo is GOOD. He used the info from SH and baited HW. Honestly, I look forward to their show down tbh. Not sure whether he purposely snub Romi by pretending not knowing her name or truly didnt know, but that scene is funny. But the funniest would be he passing RM to Ohje and Dain just snap at Ohje to put her down. And he did πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ Comedy duo, those two.

Honestly, I wonder how HW manage to keep his facade before JW. He easily snapped and spin out of control. And it seems like it is not exactly a secret judging from what SH said. Now I wonder what else Kitae had done for HW. I guess his home situation is bad but he is been actively trying to ruin JW. I know there is a redemption arc for him but I hope the plot leading to it is satisfactory. For now I didnt see he's the type to admit his mistakes and mom covering up for him definitely didnt help. Let see how it plays out

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Some of my fave moments apart from Jun Woo-Soo Bin scenes (i just fin both 5&6 so forgive me if there's some mix up)

1. Oh Je putting up his hands to agree with Mr Oh abt not changing seats.
2. Jun Woo figuring out Hwi Young's weakness
3. When Hwi Young walked Soo Bin home, there was a moment of friendliness when she called his old nickname - it gave me hope that maybe there is a way to save the boy.

I dont get how the adult teachers are so scared of Hwi Young and lets him boss them around.. so I'm happy that Mr Oh is trying to establish some control over him. I do love Mr Oh cause he's trying hard at adulting even though it scares the shit out of him πŸ˜‚

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@parkchuna
It has been obvious that HY's power is much more than just over the students. His family have tentacles everywhere.
- HY's father is paying for his old home room teacher's care
- His mother influenced police and the charged student

How far have the teachers been compromised?
At the moment we have only seen HY actually perform at piano. We have yet to see him actually excel at the other subjects. In fact, we have only been shown his weaknesses...so how is he the top student?

That scene where So-Ye secretly gets the study material from Ki-Tae set my mind racing. We know he did it super fast, he gives it to her in secret. We don't know if that book is actually from the student's summaries or if it has another source (e.g. from the teachers to HY - hence a landmine).

So many murky threads in this drama...I can't wait to see where the writer is going. I expect this is not a school drama at all but a serious questioning of corruption.

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My favorite couple is Ki-tae and So-ye. The two of them sneaking into the empty dance room with him giving her a copy of his notebook and Ki-tae waiting for So-ye outside of Chan-yeol's house is the cutest.

Joon-woo calling Ki-tae because he knew Hwi-young needed to plant Sang-hoon's shoes was so satisfying. I can't wait until Sang-hoon beats Hwi-young for first place.

A big thanks for recapping, @TeriYaki!

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@panshel
Does the note book actually look like Ki-Tae's work?

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Besides #1 Hwi-young and #28 Soo-bin, Show has not told us the other kids' ranks (Joon-woo? Sang-hoon? Ro-mi?), so I have no clue how well Ki-tae studies, but I would like to believe Ki-tae at least handwrote the notebook and stuck the Post-it tabs himself.

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@panshel
We have been told HY's rank.....However, the show keeps showing hints his actual ability does not match his rank.

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You know a drama is good when you reactivate a db account just for it. The acting in this is superb.

Hats off to writernim and director nim for very classical frames and yet delivering a refreshing blow to the high school narrative while shedding light on the very serious psychological effects of societal pressures on South Korean kids. The musical scoring is also on point. I like the suspense beats in Hwi Young's scenes. You just know something not good is about to happen and yet it remains exciting. Borrowing from the international music scene also connects the drama to a global setting. It depicts these kids as updated and connected with the rest of the world, which is true for many South Korean kids these days.

I suspect Hwi Young will blow up to his detriment which will either push him to make amends or drive him to literal insanity. He has an abusive father that is in fact the worse version of Soo Bin's mom.

Tiger parents need to watch this show.

Hwi young's nightmares are not a good sign. The kid is pretty much leaking and cracking with psychosis. He had control issues, anxieties, anger problems. At that rate, he can have a mental breakdown anytime. I wish he would.

Oh Jae is adorable and Da Heen while cute is setting herself up for pain. Lol this RoMi girl is actually the tiger parents in their youth. She probably wishes she were their kid instead.

Jun Woo is an amazing character. He and Soo Bin exhibit so much maturity at such a young age! I love how they are such gentle contrasts to their parents.

Great drama. Keeping tabs on this.

Oh Saem has grown a lot in six episodes.

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Ah and the dynamics between Soo Bin and her mom is gold. True love. Not over the top. Soo Bin is in fact the daughter that a mother like her doesn't deserve. I wish they would throw the mom a saving arc too. I hate for their mother-daughter tandem to go completely sour.

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How come they have a blanket prepared? Is this common in Korean school?
I feel bad for Hwiyoung even if he's bad. He's like that because of how his father treat him.

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@fulennaira
16hours a day @ school is not uncommon in SK. Hence students would have such things in class....maybe not right next to them for the set up though :D.

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