True Beauty: Episodes 5-6 Open Thread
With confusing heroes playing with her emotions, and some nightmarish encounters with her past, our heroine is forced to think about who she truly is. Are there people out there who will see past her bare face and instead be able to see her for what — and who — she truly is?
EPISODES 5-6 WEECAP
As we saw at the end of last week’s episodes, Seo-joon is throwing on the charm for Joo-kyung’s benefit. The whole school might be swooning over the attention he’s paying her, and he’s hilariously goaded on by his hoard of devoted followers, but the very person he wants a reaction from isn’t offering it up. On the contrary, he’s getting the opposite of what he wants: irritation, refusal to flirt back, and even an accidental face of rice.
Joo-kyung doesn’t buy his sincerity at all — plus, she’s too busy swooning over Soo-ho, and their growing closeness. In one telling detail, Joo-kyung rejects the juice gifted by Seo-joon, but then secretly swoons over Soo-ho when he later gives her some. She even saves the plastic juice bottle afterwards and uses it to store her make-up (I identify far too well with a girl that saves random trite objects because of their emotional significance — nice bit of detail, Show!).
It becomes clear to Joo-kyung (and us), that Soo-ho is crushing on her pretty hard, and that the feeling is reciprocated (proof: her hilarious The King reenactment). Soo-ho makes up dumb excuses to see her, and they even share another fall-into-your-arms incident. They’re sweet, they’re awkward, they’re a joy to watch. But things have to pull apart this budding romance, right? It’s too soon for this adorable happy ending. Indeed, a new obstacle emerges in the form of Seo-joon’s anger against Soo-ho for the death of their friend.
Seo-joon doesn’t waste an opportunity to torment Soo-ho, and lay all the blame he can on him for their friend’s suicide. And Soo-ho, in turn, being so much more sensitive than the cold facade he fakes, crumbles under the blame, and even feels guilt.
Soo-ho warns Seo-joon not to use Joo-kyung to get back at him, but the malice he feels is enough to make him pull away from Joo-kyung quite cruelly. Poor girl is confused and hurt, and who can blame her.
Despite acting like a jerk to his friend, it’s clear Seo-joon is actually a good dude. He’s still grieving for his friend and is channeling his hurt to the wrong person (for now). He’s a devoted son and a good older brother. He’s also hysterical — yes, I’m talking about the scene where he’s rocking out in his boxers and bathrobe (to my favorite “Okey Dokey Yo,” no less).
The only thing better than this scene, was the scene’s ending: Seo-joon plays it cool when he turns around and realizes in horror that Joo-kyung is sitting in the middle of his living room watching him, but he can’t hold it together long, and runs into his room and freaks out like a schoolgirl.
There’s a lot of flirty and a lot of silly in our episodes this week (including unni’s crush and the homeroom teacher’s lack of eyebrow horror lol) but there’s also a good dose of serious, too. It’s serious mixed with sweet, though, and I kinda love how True Beauty does that.
One example of this is when Joo-kyung realizes, thanks to the insignia on Soo-ho’s hoodie, that it was him that saved her on the roof that night. However much of a stretch this is (if she was too blind to recognize anything about his appearance, how did she recognize a tiny stitched symbol?), I care not — I’m all about the lovely moments this creates for them.
Soo-ho is pushed to the brink in a moment of grief over his friend, and heads to the fateful rooftop. Joo-kyung, having stitched it all together, searches for him — it’s quite a touching little scene, with Soo-ho distraught, and Joo-kyung offering him such heartfelt comfort. (God bless Moon Ga-young and her acting skills; she is literally pulling all the weight in this scene. Good thing she’s a rockstar.)
While the rooftop moment was definitely the emotional high point this week, there’s another bit of plot that’s important not only because it’s wonderful, but because it makes Joo-kyung question if being terrified to show her bare face is how she really wants to live.
Joo-kyung witnesses the bullying of SEO GO-WOON (newbie Yeo Joo-ha), a girl in her brother’s grade, who’s being tormented for her looks much like Joo-kyung herself was. (For the record, I love how this show makes adorable girls “ugly” by giving them bad skin, huge black glasses, and even huger black eyebrows.)
Go-woon is so much like Joon-kyung it’s almost startling — and oh-so-satisfying to see Joo-kyung take her under her wing. Whether it’s talking her off a ledge, defending her against the bullies, or teaching her some make-up skills of her own, Joo-kyung’s kind-heartedness really shines. This isn’t lost on Seo-joon either, when we learn (yay, super fun reveal!) that Go-woon is his adored little sister.
Joo-kyung can never seem to escape the frights of her past for long. She’s out at the jjimjilbang with her sister, and has to dodge Seo-joon and crew. Then, she’s grabbing hamburgers and has to dodge the bullies from her old school — except that doesn’t go so well, since the bully ring leader is just beyond cruel, and Joo-kyung practically disintegrates in fear in front of them. I’ve never been so happy for Soo-ho to appear out of thin air and epicly save the day (and the wallet).
Joo-kyung might have escaped this time, but the cat is out of the bag by the end of this week’s episodes. Joo-kyung’s nemesis is actually her follower on SNS (haha), she’s close to Seo-joon’s nemesis, and sure enough this means a nemesis sandwich.
Not only do these baddies put together that “pretty” and “ugly” Joo-kyung are the same girl, but they’re ready to kidnap her to wage a war against Seo-joon. Which they do. And then this plot point reaches a Boys Before Flowers pitch (and that’s not a complaint!).
We end our episodes with an epic face-off at the noraebang that’s so ridiculous and funny and swoony that it’s hard not to giggle with pleasure while watching. I love the world of this story. I love knowing that no matter what mayhem and mischief befalls Joo-kyung, she’s got two heroes with a lot of fight at the ready to protect her. And I love that the story keeps flinging around the crazy as much as they do this heartfelt cuteness.
And so much lovestruck! From Seo-joon to Soo-ho to Joo-kyung’s brother and sister, each character has their own delightful lovestruck moment. And then there’s me — equally lovestruck with this wonderful, crazy little drama.
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- Cha Eun-woo, Moon Ga-young youth rom-com drama in the works