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Boys Before Flowers: Episode 2

I feel better about Boys Before Flowers after Episode 2. The drama is still very flawed, and I think I’m going pretty easy on it — I could snark much more if I wanted to — but I don’t want to be mean about this series. I have a lot of affection for it.

But the reason for my liking hinges mostly upon one character, and that is the tough-guy-masking-a-soft-heart, Gu Jun-pyo. Lee Min-ho, manseh!

SONG OF THE DAY

Loptimist – “갈증” (Thirst) [ Download ]

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EPISODE 2 RECAP

Jan-di fights off her trio of attackers, who grab her from the girls’ locker room and hold her down.

They stop at the arrival of Ji-hoo, who asks what they’re doing in his languid, casual manner. His presence flusters the guys, because they’re acting on Jun-pyo’s orders, and Ji-hoo is obviously Jun-pyo’s friend. As though oblivious to the scene going on in front of him, Ji-hoo peers down at Jan-di and asks if she’d left something out of her pancake recipe from before. Something went wrong when he tried it. Still held down by her attackers, bewildered at the non sequitur, Jan-di mentions baking powder. Rather an awkward way to discuss cooking techniques.

Ji-hoo addresses the three minions: “Why are you still here?” Faced with disobeying Ji-hoo to his face or Jun-pyo behind his back, they skedaddle.

Ji-hoo covers her in a towel, and as he turns to leave, Jan-di tells him, “Thank you.” In his even tone, he answers, “I wasn’t helping. These things just annoy me.”

In his mansion, Jun-pyo hears of Ji-hoo’s interference. To show us that Jun-pyo isn’t completely heartless, he criticizes his minions for their extreme measures — he’d merely instructed that they scare her (to show her a “bitter taste”).

Ji-hoo’s kindness lingers in Jan-di’s mind for the rest of the day. She happens to come across him when she bicycles past him fondling a poster of a famous model at a bus stop. Not so sure you want to be getting that intimate with anything at a bus stop, buddy.

Jan-di says as much, telling him that a bus stop poster is bound to blacken his hands with dirt. Still, she admires the poster of Min Seo-hyun, who is not only famous for her beauty but also for her charity donations and her brains; she recently passed the law exam in France. Ji-hoo asks, “Do you know her?” Jan-di answers, “Of course. She’s my idol.”

Ji-hoo enjoys her reaction, smiling at Jan-di’s wide-eyed adulation. But his smile fades when she says that Seo-hyun, who is bound for great things, could marry royalty, or a president, or something of that sort to become a “world’s princess” like Princess Di. At that, Ji-hoo says, “She’s just a model.”

Jan-di sticks to her fantasy of a foreign prince falling for her idol. Mood killed, Ji-hoo turns to leave with the parting shot, “What do you know?”

At home, Jan-di’s computer-obsessed brother finds scandalous news online about one of the students at Shinhwa High School, a second-year who’s supposedly pregnant. Identified merely as Miss “K,” the family tries to guess who it could be, like a Miss Kim or Kwon (or Keum — which I wrote as “geum” since it’s closer to the phonetic reading).

The next day, Jan-di notices the stares of the other students, but is busy wondering which of them is the notorious Miss K.

Jun-pyo is in a good mood, and when Yi-jung asks what’s up with “2,500 Won” (Jan-di) today, he says, “Just wait. She’ll come here soon.” (It’s too cute to see that this — her coming to see him — is his obvious goal, although he convinces himself that it’s all because Jan-di needs to be humbled.) Ji-hoo wonders, “What prank have you pulled this time?” Jun-pyo: “Why, so you can save her again?”

Yi-jung and Woo-bin wonder what that means, while Ji-hoo says that picking on one girl like this “is ridiculous and childish.” Jun-pyo retorts, “Do you see her as a girl?” because to him, she’s like a horse, or a dog. After all, she dared defy the Great Jun-pyo-nim (using the “nim” suffix on himself is, as one might guess, exceedingly arrogant).

Jan-di’s classmates identify her as the notorious Miss K, and news spreads fast. In class, both chalkboards have been covered in slurs like “filthy,” “get lost,” “who’s the daddy?” “crazy bitch,” etc.

The Tarty Trio leave a pile of dirty rags on her desk and taunt her. Pushed too far, Jan-di fumes, “I can’t take this anymore!” Ginger mocks, “So what are you going to do about it?”

Jan-di’s arrival at the F4 lounge brings Jun-pyo much satisfaction, but he covers it with disdain: “If you came to apologize, you’re too late.” She throws the dirty rags in his face and warns him that she won’t sit back and take his abuse anymore.

Jun-pyo’s arrogance turns to confusion when Jan-di clenches her fists and assumes a fighting stance. Puzzled, he asks what she’s doing, and she repeats: “I told you, I won’t sit back and take it anymore.” With a shriek, Jan-di jumps in the air, and whirls into a rather impressive spinning back kick — catching Jun-pyo right in the face.

The other F4 members look on in amazement as Jan-di clomps over to the fallen Jun-pyo, demanding, “Did you see me sleeping around with a man? Did you even see me holding hands? How dare you say all that about a chaste and pure girl who hasn’t even had her first kiss yet!”

She warns one last time, “If you keep up these filthy tricks, I’ll really kill you then!”

One might think that this show of defiance would piss off the Almighty Jun-pyo, but later that night, he sits alone, chuckling to himself. Woo-bin asks why he’s so amused. Jun-pyo: “Haven’t you guys caught on yet?”

With supreme satisfaction, he announces, “That chick’s totally into me.” That makes no sense to the other guys, but Jun-pyo elaborates:

Jun-pyo: “Think about it. She didn’t want the guy she likes to misunderstand, so she came herself to insist she was pure and innocent.”
Yi-jung: “Following that logic –”
Woo-bin: “– saying she hadn’t had her first kiss –”
Jun-pyo: “– is her way of saying she’s waiting for her first kiss from me.”
Yi-jung, clapping: “Bravo. Impressive, Gu Jun-pyo. You’re my friend, but that’s really something.”

Relieved at this gratifying revelation, Jun-pyo attributes Jan-di’s extreme hate of him to “thinking she could fool me by acting mad.” It is HILARIOUS, and Lee Min-ho is adorable.

The next day at school, Jan-di lies low, wanting to avoid more encounters with the Almighty Jun-pyo. Men in suits approach and ask her to accompany them, but won’t identify their boss.

She declines, and hides (in a painfully exaggerated sequence) as she sneaks her way across campus, only to be accosted at the last minute. She’s shoved into a waiting vehicle, then drugged.

She awakens on a massage table in a luxurious room, and is subjected to all sorts of painful beautifying processes like waxing.

Here, I wish they’d employed a bit more logic, because Jan-di goes along with the makeup, hair, and dressing sessions — confused, but not really protesting. Never mind that she still doesn’t know whose home she is in, or why she is there. Then again, I suppose if someone were lavishing clothes, jewels, and spa treatments on me, my guard would be down too.

The attendant (butler?) tells her that this is the first time that “the young master” has brought home a girl, although I suppose that requires a pretty loose definition of “bringing home.”

The butler can’t tell her why she’s here, because he doesn’t know, either. He deposits her at a door where someone is waiting for her; Jan-di enters cautiously and sees a tall figure standing at the window, and guesses, “Ji-hoo?”

Disappointedly realizing she’s at Jun-pyo’s family estate, Jan-di is immediately suspicious, and puts up her dukes: “What are you going to do this time?”

Jun-pyo turns her toward a mirror and tells her to look: “See, money can turn even an ugly duckling into a heron.” Jan-di: “Don’t you mean swan?”

Indignant, Jan-di retorts that she didn’t ask him for this, but he’s wrapped up in his own smug misconception, and tells her, “If you like me, just say so.” When she doesn’t respond, he recalls, “Right, you like to talk in opposites, don’t you?” (O, delusion, he is King of it.)

Jan-di accuses him of illegally kidnapping her. Jun-pyo assures her, “Nobody’s around, so you can be open about liking me here. From now on, I’ll be willing to make an exception and recognize you outside of school.”

Jan-di is completely speechless. He continues: “If you just do as I say, when nobody’s around I can treat you as the Almighty Jun-pyo’s girlfriend.”

Jan-di wonders if his brain has been addled by too much greasy food, and turns to leave.

Showing the first sign of anxiety, Jun-pyo blocks her from leaving. He tells her that she’s currently wearing 100 million won’s worth ($77,000), “But that’s nothing. If you’re with me, you can enjoy more than that every day. Are you saying you don’t want it? Are you crazy?”

Jan-di bristles: “The moment I see your face, it feels like bugs are crawling all over my body.” She takes off her jewelry and throws it on the ground, then reaches to unzip her dress (before remembering Jun-pyo’s watching — rather intently, I might add — and insists he return her uniform).

Jan-di: “You don’t seem to know this, but you can’t buy friends with money. Friends bond through feelings.” Jun-pyo replies, “There’s nothing you can’t buy,” and tells her to contradict him if she can. She can’t think of anything.

After Jan-di leaves, Jun-pyo rages against his employees, stomping on the discarded dress and telling his butler to throw away the dress and fire everyone who worked on Jan-di today.

Jan-di remembers too late that she’s still wearing the borrowed high heels, takes them off, and throws them over the gate — just as Ji-hoo finds her outside and wonders what she’s doing. He laughs: “You’re always in a dramatic situation.”

Jan-di asks Ji-hoo, “Is there anything in the world you can’t buy?” Dejected, she figures there isn’t, but perks up when Ji-hoo answers after a moment of thinking, “Air.”

Amused at her happy reaction to finding one unbuyable thing, Ji-hoo ruffles her hair and calls her “a really fun kid.” As he gets up to leave, he tosses her his sneakers, since she’s now barefoot. Jan-di watches him zoom off on his motorcycle with a smile.

She tries to return the shoes the next day by visiting the F4 lounge, but Yi-jung and Woo-bin inform her that Jun-pyo isn’t around. She grumbles that she doesn’t care about him, and asks them to give the shoes to Ji-hoo.

The guys know they owe their recent entertainment to Jan-di, and invite her to have some tea while she fills them in on her latest encounter with Jun-pyo. Seeing a commercial of Min Seo-hyun on TV, the guys mention that Ji-hoo ought to be happy that Seo-hyun is coming back to Korea soon.

She asks if Ji-hoo is acquainted with Seo-hyun, and learns that after his parents’ death, he’d retreated into autism (I remember hearing it was Asperger’s, which is a mild form of autism). Seo-hyun was the only one able to draw him out of himself, and became something of “a first love, girlfriend, and mother.” This information drags Jan-di into a funk, so much so that she even cuts dinner short, feeling inadequate next to the glamorous model.

In fact, she’s so distracted that in gym class, she fails to react swiftly when Ginger hurls a ball at her (in a game of dodgeball), and gets hit in the face. She leaves the group of laughing mean girls while the F4 guys watch, and Jun-pyo finds her washing up in the bathroom.

He tries to helpfully wipe the blood from her face, but Jan-di, fighting tears, doesn’t want his help. It’s clear (to us) that he wants to make her feel better but is woefully ill-equipped with the social skills; not knowing what to say, he chides her for being absent-minded enough to get hit in the face, and tells her not to cry. Jan-di counters, “Do I have to get your permission to cry now? And weren’t you the person who was happiest to see me crying and hurting?”

Jun-pyo: “Is that all you can say to the person who came to help?”
Jan-di: “Who asked for your help? If everyone died and you were the last person on earth, I still wouldn’t accept your help.”

It’s a bit cute — and sad — when Jun-pyo stops her from leaving and demands to know, uncertainly, “W-what is it you hate so much about me? I’m good-looking. I’m tall, I’m smart, I’m rich. How — how can you hate Gu Jun-pyo? Are you stupid?”

Jan-di shoots back that she dislikes the way he looks, the way he walks, his curly hair — “and picking on weak kids for fun with your red cards or whatever with your thoughtlessness — that’s the worst!”

Jun-pyo stutters in disbelief, but Jan-di’s not quite finished: “In short, I hate everything about you! Everything!”

Is the obligatory shower scene supposed to be moving? I don’t know; it was just so obvious that I had to laugh.

But shameless half-naked water shots aside, Lee Min-ho does a good job of showing Jun-pyo’s frustration, first as he engages in a particularly rough game of rugby, then as he stares in the mirror in self-loathing.

It’s only when Jun-pyo spies the notice for a class trip that he cheers up. All second- and third-years will have the chance to go on a month-long school trip to Europe.

It doesn’t even occur to Jun-pyo that 20 million won ($15,500) is a bit rich for a commoner like Jan-di. Thus on class trip day, he spends the whole time at the airport pacing anxiously, wondering where Jan-di is. Ji-hoo is similarly distracted, but for a different reason — today marks Min Seo-hyun’s return to Korea. Seo-hyun (Han Chae-young, looking gorgeous) greets Ji-hoo warmly.

With Jan-di nowhere to be seen, Jun-pyo is a fidgety ball of nerves until he receives a call, (ostensibly) informing him where Jan-di is.

Jan-di cannot afford to go on the trip, and to make things worse, her father has run afoul of some gambling debts (ah, it wouldn’t be a kdrama without gambling debts!).

Therefore, she and her friend Ga-eul decide to make this a working vacation, so they can enjoy themselves while earning some money. Through Ga-eul, they find a job on a fishing boat. They’re enjoying the experience, until one loud, obnoxious voice cuts in on their sleepytime.

To her shock, the entire class looks down on her from a Shinhwa cruiseliner, with Jun-pyo manning a loudspeaker. Now that he’s found her, he’s happily back to taunting her (like a little boy tormenting a little girl he likes, not knowing that chocolate and flowers FIX EVERYTHING. Oh, yeah, and also a little basic kindness.).

Jan-di can’t believe her vacation is to be ruined thusly. She asks why they aren’t on their class trip, and he replies that he’s been there before and wanted a new, interesting place. He’s here on “someone’s” recommendation: “What a total coincidence, huh? I had no idea you’d be here, Dry Cleaner.”

I don’t care if you think this is corny, it is TOO CUTE.

When Jan-di and Ga-eul dock for the night, they note with dismay that Jan-di’s classmates have arrived and seem to be waiting to check into a hotel (or something).

Jan-di’s spirits further sink when Ji-hoo arrives with the radiant Min Seo-hyun on his arm.

Jun-pyo addresses Jan-di, saying, “Dry Cleaner, be honest, aren’t you happy to run into me at a place like this?” Jan-di retorts that she was having a grand time before he came along.

Jun-pyo invites her (in his careless way) to join the rest of the class. While she’s quick to turn him down flat, she has an entirely different reception for Ji-hoo. Jun-pyo looks on in displeasure when Ji-hoo breezes past him, invites Jan-di to a welcome party for Seo-hyun, and sees Jan-di’s immediate acceptance: “Yes, I’ll go, absolutely.”

The Tarty Trio, however, seize the opportunity to have a little fun, and give Jan-di some “advice” for the dress code. It’s not too hard to predict that this goes awry, and that they must have told her it’s a costume party. The instant she walks in, she realizes she’s been tricked, and berates herself for falling for the lie.

Embarrassed, she tries to leave, but is forced to enter the room to escape Jun-pyo (who, by the way, spends all his time looking around for her). When the Mean Girls find her, they taunt her and try to pull her coat off her. The result is inevitable but still humiliating: They grab Jan-di’s jacket, she tries to escape, falls into a tray of hors d’oeuvres, and lands with a loud crash.

The girls laugh gleefully, calling her delusional — perhaps she started believing the hype that she truly was Wonder Woman? Others snort in amusement, but Jun-pyo looks angry (on her behalf). He’s about to move toward her, but once again is one-upped by Ji-hoo, who arrives at Jan-di’s side with Seo-hyun.

Seo-hyun sizes up the situation immediately, and faces the Mean Girls with disgust: “I know why you did this. But do you know that this proves how low you are, not her?”

With Ji-hoo and Seo-hyun by her side, Jan-di is ushered up to Seo-hyun’s room to clean up.

Seo-hyun takes an immediate liking to Jan-di as she dresses her up and helps her with her makeup, saying that any friend of Ji-hoo’s is a friend of hers.

Jan-di brushes off the compliments, saying Ji-hoo was just being nice, but Seo-hyun knows him better and assures her that he’s not that type. This is the first time she’s seen him step in to help someone else.

Jan-di doesn’t want to give herself too much credit, and answers, “But Ji-hoo’s just attentive by nature.” To Seo-hyun, this is just proof of the opposite, that Jan-di is an exception to the rule.

She also has heard of Jan-di’s vow not to let Jun-pyo beat her down. She voices her support and wishes Jan-di victory, but explains, “It’s because he’s lonely.” Being the child of a parents who are fixated solely on their business empire has made him lonely, and his outer demeanor is just a cover-up for it.

Seo-hyun finishes the look with a pair of shoes, telling her, “Good shoes take you to good places.”

When Jan-di is ushered back to the party, people look on in surprise, but no one’s more shocked than Jun-pyo — who drops his plate in his astonishment at the purty, purty girl.

And yet, he is beaten to the punch once more, because Seo-hyun pushes Ji-hoo toward Jan-di, saying that a gentleman doesn’t ignore such a beautiful lady. So Ji-hoo walks over to Jan-di and offers his arm.

 
COMMENTS

All through Episode 1, I was thinking Lee Min-ho reminded me of someone, and it kept niggling at the back of my mind. I finally put my finger on it, and it’s Lee Dong-wook (La Dolce Vita, My Girl — aka, this guy). Lee Min-ho isn’t nearly as good as Lee Dong-wook (yet?), but he shows a lot of promise, in addition to the fact that he delivers some of his lines in a similar way, and even has similar bone structure to boot.

Sorry to say, however, that while I was holding out hope for Kim Hyun-joong, I don’t think he is going to do much in this drama other than look pretty. In Episode 1, he was quiet and enigmatic. In Episode 2, the more lines he had, the more clear his inexperience became, which makes him seem stiff and unnatural. Let’s hope he’s given as few lines as possible, to let his quiet mystique carry him.

On the other hand, Kim Bum is doing all right playing Yi-jung (nothing to scream about, though), and I actually do like Kim Joon‘s Woo-bin — in the absence of his gangsta “Yo, yo, yo!” posturing (which was still present in Episode 2, though pulled back a little). Unfortunately, Kim Bum looks years younger than his castmates, as he’s the only one actually playing his age (19), other than Ga-eul, who’s also 19. Speaking of whom, Kim So-eun is pretty good for the newbie she is, and she also happens to be currently acting in the large-scale sageuk drama Empress Cheon-chu, playing Chae Shi-ra‘s childhood role.

 
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Slight problem with this Jun Pyo characterization. Lee MIn Ho's natural look is intelligent. But the (Domyouji)Jun Pyo character is almost a clueless idiot.

That's why the Japanese guy was a perfect fit. He looked dumb enough to fit right into the character.

Lee Min Ho doesn't look dumb.

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i like hyun joong as Yoon Ji Hoo! He look great and awsome! I actually dislike the emotion on lee min ho...i think he is not suitable for the character and the hair is.......i like kim bum and kim joon they look pretty handsome! Goo Hye Sun is the best choice for makino !

Kim Hyun Joong!
Fighting!

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emm.. i also dont think he resembles LDW... in terms of look, LDW is handsomer than JP. but JP's attitude is waaaaaaaaay adorable than LDW in my girl.

i think Ji Hoo sometimes resembles BYJ in wintersonata.
and GHS resembles nodame. her hair cut and her comical expression. yeah, its overacting, i usually dislike overacting but for GHS, she's fine with it. :D

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where are you looking to watch this episode?
I had thought that only ep 1 was out, but lo and behold you have recapped episode 2! :)

help would reallly be appreciated!

I love the way you write! :)

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again thank you for your recaps...
wow... this episode is better than the first one, thank god...
when i watched the Taiwanese version, i fell in love with domyoji character (i think the name was dao ming tze, CMIIW), a lot of my girl friends did. and seeing lee minho in this episode brings the memory of my old crush on dao ming tze...
he's so damn cute when he's being obnoxious and jealous... :P
kim bum and kim joon is alright... maybe because they didn't have any plot given on them yet, be patience... it's only the second episode... but i do agree on your opinion javabeans when you say kim bum look a lot younger compare to his classmates...
i do hope hyunjoon will be better on the latter episode, but maybe i just keep my expectation to my self, because afterall he's still a newbie actor...

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thanks for your recap javabeans. w
I didn't image how LMH is going, but now he is so cool and his perfoment is over expected.

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Domyouji is soooooooooooo hot!!!!!!!!!!

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Orchid (no. 3), "manseh" is a cheer, meaning something like "hurrah." it's kind of like saying "long live Lee Min-ho" in this case.

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i liked ep 2 a ton better than the first <3 ahhh junpyo's so cute!
and altho the dresses and hair looked strange, i really loved the shoes they picked out. especially the second pair - those were AWESOME.

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Everybody was talking about Kim Hyunjoong or Kim Bum before the first two episodes aired, but it seems that Lee Min Ho is now gaining more and more popularity, which is good! I hope he keeps up the good work, I'm enjoying this drama so far mainly because of him.

Something might be wrong with me but... after watching the Japanese drama and Meteor Garden, I still have a thing for the Japanese anime television series. The drawings were terrible and the animation was cheap, but the seiyuus who played Domyouji and Makino were awesome!

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hahah tbh i think lee min-ho resembles choi si-won! albeit with a squarer jaw. but his attitude definitely reeks of ldw

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love this drama!
this is now my no.1 drama..
hehe..
hope that they will not disappoint supporters like me..

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out of the three domyoujis..I think that the korean version has the hottest one..and a liiiittle less stupid than the 2 previous ones..haha :)

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Gosh...I really love Huyn Joong a lot...For his own sake, he needs to loosen up a bit, well a lot more with his movements in each scene. I know he can act well if he can overcome that fear of strangers and his total awkwardness. Hope the show keeps getting better like how it was for epi 2 comparing to the first one.

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oh no....they should have gotten second moon (the one who did goong's OST) to do this OST. bad soundtracks are eh hem...one of the failing factors of dramas. i mean, i will watch goong solely for the cinematography and soundtrack.

just want to ask...

보다 in this case, means "over" or "before"? cause i'm a bit lost and my korean isn't good.

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On acting (comparision to Japanese version cannot be avoided, sorry)
Lee Min Ho is a big surprise in this one. He's got the ability to make Jun-pyo the most lovable version of the original Tsukasa. Until recently Matsumoto Jin was the best for me, but he'd better watch out! Min Ho's Jun-pyo isn't as stupid, as absurd at times as in previous series. Here he lacks the ability to understand people, to feel for them and react in the way he should react, and that makes 50% of his stupidity. The other 50% is the lack of knowledge, which probably never was an object of his interest. He doesn't make his character lacking and dumb because he was born this way; it's more funny because JP is ignorant and doesn't really care about changing it. [so he ends up not only stupidish, but cute as well:)]. I mean, for me, falling in love with lacking boy is more probable than falling in love with a boy whose stupidity is awfully (negatively) transparent and incurable. Especially for a girl who is supposed to be smart (law school, right?).
Patient nr 2...Kim Hyun Joong. A serious one. A lot of hope, I still want him to succeed, but I'm afraid he won't make it. The character should be subtle, for me Hanazawa Rui was always sensitive guy, whose emotions were hidden deep inside and we could only catch a glimpse of them through his eyes or minor face expressions. And now suddenly we have this guy with perfect look, but nothing more. His smiles, his sighs, his actions are so visible, that I don't see the Yoon Ji Hoo, I still see the actor trying hard but ending up stiff. I know it's based on manga, but still YJH should be the one of few characters who looks like from comic book, but act like a totally charming outsider [yet not alien].
I'm still waiting for Kim Bum's bang! as I have a feeling he's got the idea for his character. He may look youngest, but with his smiles and confidence he really looks like a playboy.
It would also be nice if they'd given some more time to Woo-bin, though I highly doubt it. But he gives me good feeling :)
last - Jan-di. I actually still can't make up my mind. Her acting is ok, but I personally lack any warm feelings towards her. And I like it when I like main characters. Oh, did I mention that Gu Hye-sun's acting reminds sooooo much of Sang-Mi's in Gourmet? Especially in this : http://i294.photobucket.com/albums/mm96/javabeans122/drama/kkot/kkot2-121.jpg scene. remeber how Jin-soo used to interview people and ask questions? This "aaaah.. ye.." and smile :) So Gourmet-ish!

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Ohhhhhh, he DOES look like lee dong wook! No wonder I think he's so fine ;D
Personally I think Ji-woo is way too transparent...he should be more mysterious. Oh well.

Omg whenever kim bum smiles I just melt into a pool of nothingness...* 3*

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I confess, I didn't have high expectations of this show since I have watched the T & Jversions. I love the story, but admit that I'm not always crazy about the acting in either version. Having watched both versions and now the Kversion, there are the obvious comparisons. With just 2 episodes, here's my 2 cents. What I liked:

1. LMH is more relatable - in the Tversion Jerry was a bit one dimensional and couldn't convey his inner emotions. Jun came across as too stupid & shallow to have inner vulnerabilities or even deep thoughts. LMH gives us moments to really see the vulnerable side of him in a subtle and thoughtful way rather than beating us over the head with it(like the Jversion); and that makes this story more plausible.

2. KHJ is a better fit than most people are giving him credit for. If you read the manga and have watched the other version - KHJ is doing the role. In the Tversion, Vic made him too broody(?) & the Jversion O.Shun was too dreamy & princely(but I confess I loved him!!!). KHJ has the awkwardness, the stiffness of the role right because Rui/Ji Hoo is the guy that distances himself from everything, sees everything from a 3rd person-like vision, so when he steps into the situation, he doesn't fit exactly right into any situation because he's not personally invested.

3. The father. I love this guy in everything he's done and he's the only one that made Witch Amusement remotely interesting.

4. The mean girls. They are so over the top, so ditzy, so...fun!!!

5. Ga-eul. So far, she's visible and she's a friend - not a prop like in the Jversion who is used only when they need her to cause drama. I really hope that they take a cue from the Tversion and make her a strong secondary character. The one that makes the playboy fall. In the Jversion, she turns out to be a joke.

What I don't like so far:
1. The high school setting. The J & Tversions have the story setting in college which I think is a bit more realistic.

2. The pace. Everything seems to be moving a bit too quickly. Don't get me wrong, I think the Jversion was much quicker and the Tversion way too slow. I don't know how to explain, but the pace of the story seems to be off.

3. Background of each F4. Maybe its me, but I feel like the Tversion did a better job of flushing out the characters of each F4 and setting up their personalities than either of the J or Kversions have so far. Really, while the story is a romance, it is also about friendship too and I'm not really seeing that here. Hopefully, it will get better.

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Thank you so much, Javabeans for your FAST and enjoyable recaps!

I did like this episode more than the first - which is always a good sign for me. I have not seen the Taiwanese version, so for me there was a lot of new stuff, which I enjoyed.

I never thought I'd say it, but I think I can come to like Lee Min-ho's Gu Jun-pyo more than Matsujun's Domyouji ^___^ He really is great here! Still a bit meh about Jandi.

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Koo Hye Sun acting hit the nail on the coffin for me in this drama. Can no longer tolerate her over exaggerations. I do like the other characters though. Seen both Jv and Tversions. Jversion is the best.

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I'd definitely watch it but only because I loved the Japanese version so much! Thanks for recapping, Javabeans!!!!!

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I haven't been this excited over a drama for a long time! Especially after Coffee Prince I couldn't stop thinking about the episode and I think I'm starting to like Lee Min Ho character even if he's too young for me!

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Haha they played "Womanizer" by Britney Spears in the scene right after the flying kick! And boy that was an awesome /impressive flying kick there! Yay! You go girl!

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he does have the dong wook thing goin on..
BUT i just LOVE the scene where he had false assumptions on!!
and it just got cuter afterwards!!!

ESPECIALLY the BEE SCENE!!!OMG~~
that was soooo cute!!!
am luuvin him noow~~
(shower scene: siwon??)
..
some if the songs just dont fit the mood~

lastly~~
dramas getting better!!!

and on ep 3---> our hJ shows more expressions!!!this is soo exciting!!!cant wait!!! seriously!!!!

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Great recap! Episode 2 was a lot better in my opinion, a lot more meaningful interaction between characters and I'm really into the Jun Pyo character now...Episode 1 was a bit awkward, probably with setting up the drama and such. I can't say much for Hyun Joong's character either--like he's not quite there.

Looking forward to episode 3!

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I've always loved Rui more than Domyouji in both the jap and tw ver. But for some weird reason, I just can't bring myself to like HyunJoong as Rui/Ji Hoo. On the other hand, Lee Min Ho has been absolutely wonderful as Jun Pyo. Totally in love with JP and I can't wait to watch the scenes between JP and Jandi, considering its more of a Jandi/JiHoo thing right now.

Also, I absolutely can't wait for the relationship between Gaeul and Yijung to start <3

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This is tooo similar to Goong.

-Story based around an elite or school that specializes in something (the arts for Goong)
-Male lead is in love with another girl (older)
-Female lead is kind of the misfit/quirky
-Female lead goes through a transformation early on
-Male lead and Girl lead have some kind of story line with shoes in the beginning. (Goong-she had to clean his shoes)
-Male lead has a posse
-Female lead goes to party with highschool peers/elite... wangta
-Male lead is quiet, reserved, "stiff, unnatural"
-Female lead has comedic family (younger brother, father who is extremely proud of his work, mother who pushes daughter

etc. etc. but then maybe it's more of a typical drama than a copy of Goong

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@cuchery246, I recommend waiting, actually the one you're talking about isn't the male lead, though we'll get a lot of him. And the transformation thing was only temporary. Trust me, this isn't similar to Goong.

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Thank you so much Sarah...
I had a great time watching this episode & reading your recap.

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considering boys over flowers, the manga, was first published in 1992 and goong, the manhwa was published 10 years later (in 2002), i highly doubt your 'copied off' theory is correct. the drama is just following the manga, as it should, while adding its own korean twist to make it more interesting and palatable to korean audiences. do some research before you come off as sounding really ignorant.

and thanks so much dramabeans for the wonderful recap! i admit, i'm enjoying the series way too much that i kind of gloss over and accept the flaws, though obvious they are.

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Thanks for the amazing recap...but you forgot the part about Jun-pyo being deathly afraid of bugs (i.e. the bee). That was a pretty funny scene.

Thank you again!

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yay!!! so excited... can't wait for subs to come out :o) thanks for the recap javabeans!

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Javabeans, as always you are awesome.....this is a promising entertaining show, LMH is shooting up...he had a minor role in I AM SAM...he was already noticeable...for those who are interested, he was quite fun in that drama...am soooo looking forward to your future recaps.....THANKS!!!!!

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i think i'll wait the Japanese version just to entertain me while i wait for subs. is ji-hoo the lead guy? junpyo sounds more interesting.

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Thanks for the recaps javabeans! I haven't watched the episodes yet so these are going to have to tide me over till the subs come out. From what I can tell though, it seems Lee Min Ho is doing a really good job bringing out the Domyoji from the manga (but it's been a while since I've read it so I could be wrong?) but Jandi's over-acted facial expressions are a total turn off - which is bad since she's the main character. She needs to tone them down a bit to make it more realistic since she's supposed to portray the average girl in a crowd of super rich kids in an over-the-top school.

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Although comparisons are inevitable.......there's WAY too much comparisons between the J and TW versions with this show. I'm just sticking to the manga and enjoying the show on its own merit. Lots of fun so far!! Thanks for the recaps Dramabeans!!!!

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i am liking this drama so far...i like hyun joong but the rui played by shun in the jap version and vic zhou in the taiwanese version was much better mayb coz they were played by professional actors...but he's passable atleast so far...mayb he will come into his character later on so i will hold out hope for him....but omg the guy casted for doumyouji is perfect i mean in the sense that it's was wat i would have imagined the guy to look like after reading the manga...he's acting pretty good too no complains abt him...on a side note does anyone else think he has similarity with choi si won for super junior seriously they do similar i know i am not going crazy..lol...the girl playin makino is ok but tends to over react sometimes...esp when she starts yellin there were times i had to put it on mute coz it was just annoyin...the other guys are ok but ofcourse they are not a big part of it so not indepth feelings there...i personally like kibum tho..lol...anywayz still lookin forward to the nest eppi...

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in the scene where junpyo is explaining to his two friends that jandi is totally into him, i thought his two friends were more mocking him than anything?

oh, and as for logic, i decided to throw that out the window in the first episode when a kid was about to commit suicide and everyone reacted in excitement and there where no teachers in sight.

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asperger's?? That means Rui is some kind of genius right? Asperger's syndrome is like smart autism. He's just socially awkward.

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COMMENT OVERLOAD. lol

I don't remember but were your Coffee Prince recaps as popular as this series? Anyhow, enjoyed the episode and really liked Lee Min Ho. It's so ZOMG corny but I love it for some reason haha.

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It's okay... I love your recaps though! I still think Go Ara would've made a better Jandi. She was pretty good in Who Are You... Argh. I can't let that go. Koo Hye Sun's acting seems too forced...

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Wow, so fast! Ep 2 sounds interesting already. I do sort of agree that Goo Hye Sun's facial expressions look overboard. I remember in the first episode when she was saying, "Not flower 4. More like fly 4. Dung flies," looked really over-exaggerated. But Lee Min Ho is doing pretty good. I hope the rest of the cast will soon settle down into their roles.
The back kick picture/scene.....priceless. It looks so awesome already!
Thanks for the recap!

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i'm in love with the rui character...lee min ho is good but i can't help getting distracted by his curls. on the mean scale - the japanese version is 5 levels on top but i'm starting to love our very own korean f4 too

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Like everybody else here, I'm already halfway in love with Jun Pyo. I had no idea Lee Min Ho was so talented, now I must go and check out I am Sam.

Both Lee Min Ho and Kim Bum, make me smile like a besotted fool. The scene with the bee was so hilarious yet tender. When JP was afraid of the bee he used a different tone of voice, softer and more childish, suggesting that he really has been putting on quite a facade. And Kim Bum can light up a scene by merely exuding his charms.

As for Kim Hyun Joong, to me he is the weakest link among the cast. His acting consists of striking poses a la "Blue Steel" (yes, he reminds me of Zoolander). Sorry Kim Hyun Joong fans, he just comes off too self consciensce and unnatural. I wouldn't have minded so much if he had a smaller role, but I think Hanazawa Rui should be a proper foil to Domyoji. It would have worked better for the story if we, like Makino, had a tougher choice between these two boys.

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You guys know what's really a relief:
The lead pair have ACTUAL CHEMISTRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
YAY!!!
I realized this in the nosebleed scene, where Jun Pyo goes "Are you that stupid that you got hit in the face with a ball??" and BANG! It took me right back to FULL HOUSE and Rain's continual berating of Song Hye Kyo...no couple has ever reminded me of FH's lead couple (their chemistry is honestly unmatchable, in my opinion). I was really happy after that scene!

I agree with Kim Hyung Joon just being a pretty face and that's disappointing, but Javabeans is right, he just doesn't have the experience and it's showing...poor guy...he makes wierd faces and is unable to emanate the mysterious allure that Oguri Shun channeled considerably well in HYD...but that's okay...we have Min Hoo and Kim Bum to distract us...

And I honestly felt Ga-Eul is playing her role excellently. She's very pretty yet plain, I CANNOT wait for the secondary storyline involving her and Kim Bum to start....they're both so beautiful!!!

Min Hoo is SOOO much better as Domyouji....I'm loving the cheesiness to the max!!!!

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What annoys me is the keyboard-music they use in some of the scenes... It sounds like something form an arcade game or something, but other then that I still have hope!

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well... if ep 2 had some improvements from ep 1.. maybe ep 3 and 4 will be better!

Goo Hye Sun.... her acting was much better in CFs XD

like this one:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3sSrnSAbKq0

(and her skin looked less white... sad that her acting here is a bit over exagerated, but maybe its because she's too focused on being a teen :/)

...
I just have to show this >.<
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FT7993DPPnM

If only she still had long hair she would've really been Makino!!!

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I'm still reluctant to watch this, simply because I already watched the Japanese version and my lazy ass doesn't want to watch it again. I know there will be differences but nothing's drawing me towards it. =
Maybe I'll watch it before the episodes start piling in and I won't be able to catch up.

Darn you Hyunjoong! If only you weren't casted. XDDD He's the only reason I'm even considering it and I can see why he was casted as Rui too.
His character is similar to him: quiet, mysterious, plays an instrument and all that jazz.

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I wanted to see Jan-di break out of the 'korean' syndrome-sickly looking girl image, but she failed so many times at being Makino. When I thought she was going to use all her mighty wonder-women power -- she just did it enough, but didn't reach it. So ...

I still like it! Especially, the shower seen for Jun-pyo. I like him lots in this role. I don't know much about him, but he is yummy!

love love love ... good looking guys in one scene.

mj

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Javabeans,

Your recaps have definitely piqued my interest.

Can't wait to check it out for myself.

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