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Our Beloved Summer: Episodes 1-2 Open Thread

The premiere week of Our Beloved Summer somehow managed to do two things at once: feel like a familiar story we’ve heard echoes of before, and feel fresh and unique. I’ll give most of the credit to the cast for that, but the storyline also deserves some credit.

 
EPISODES 1-2 WEECAP

It’s not often that the first week of a drama doesn’t feel like all set-up, but Our Beloved Summer had one of those premiere weeks. It felt more like we were already in Chapter 1 from the get-go, and even though the first week sets up the drama to come, I didn’t feel like I was waiting to reach that point to get to our actual story. So, yay.

What is the story, you ask? Two people who’ve known each other since high school, and have had this emotionally-tangled love-hate relationship since then. Our leads are CHOI WOONG (Choi Woo-shik) and KOOK YEON-SU (Kim Da-mi).

Woong is a sweet dopey guy who doesn’t have high ambitions and just wants to live a peaceful life (to the point of appearing like a slacker). Yeon-su, in comparison, is the Type A go-getter who’s at the top of her class, and wants success more than anything.

Back in high school, these two got convinced to star in a little online documentary that goes viral when it aired. We see snippets of it from both angles — our leads bickering during the shooting, and our leads bickering in the final product that airs. The bottom line is that they get on like oil and vinegar. It’s half the fun of watching, of course, whether it’s the docu-within-the-drama, or the drama itself.

Where the drama really excels is in how it contrasts who these two were in high school, and who they became. Yeon-su might have boasted as a bratty teenager that “No matter what I’m doing I’ll be successful,” but when we meet her in the present day, she’s a struggling team leader of a marketing/PR company. In contrast, Woong looks like a free-loader, but he’s actually become the beloved (and super successful) illustrator “Ko-oh” whose identity is a tightly kept secret.

The drama has fun playing with this reversal of expectations, but there’s another layer, of course, and that’s the romance. By switching back and forth between past and present timelines, we learn that even though they fought like cats and dogs in high school, they dated for a number of years. We see them super cute together in flashback, see Woong’s single-hearted devotion to her, and also see Yeon-su fishing around for something she wasn’t getting from the relationship.

A lot of their relationship is kept as a mystery (and will likely be shown to us in bits and pieces as the drama progresses), but we learn that they broke up five years ago. Woong is still nursing a broken heart, and he’s resentful of Yeon-su to an almost comedic extent: for instance, we learn he’s spent the last five years rehearsing what he would do if she ever had the nerve to show her face again (which is spray water at a her, and toss salt lol).

Despite them both dreading to meet each other again, it happens. Yeon-su is running a PR campaign that would include artist Ko-oh doing a live drawing event. She doesn’t know Ko-oh is actually Woong… and then she shows up on his doorstep. And, she gets the welcome he’s long been anticiapting.

Her proposal to him, and finding out how successful he’s become, is what starts their worlds colliding again. And just like that, the inertia starts, mutual friends become mutual again, and they start running into each other — the stuff that dramas are made of.

The other element that pulls everything together and brings some extra pizazz to our present-day storyline is that the company that created the docu about these two in high school wants to do a reunion shoot. That means filming the pair again, and hoping for the same hit they had so many years ago. You can imagine how that goes over with both of them, with not only their added history, and all that water under the bridge, but the reversal of expectations when it comes to their “success” as adults.

All in all, it was quite a fun and well-constructed premiere week. And the only thing I liked more than the actual structure of the drama was the cast — they feel really fresh and unexpected here — and I’m almost surprised to see them carrying this drama themselves, without any other big names around (except in supporting roles, because ack, Seo Jung-yeon, Park Won-sang, and even Lee Joon-hyuk are here).

We’ve also got some tried-and-true second lead characters all ready to go: KIM JI-WOONG (Kim Sung-chul) who’s known both leads since high school (and seems to be nursing a secret crush), and the idol NJ (Noh Jung-eui) who’s pursuing the clueless Woong.

A drama like this really relies on us liking the characters and following the story just to see what happens to them and their relationship — it’s a little early to say, but it’s a strong start that does pull me right into these characters and their world. Particularly, I like Woong and his secret identity, and how he went from dork with a mega set up colored pencils in high school, to a successful artist being courted for his work. I’ll definitely be sticking around just for the fun combo of his artistry, pettiness, and humor.

PS: It’s rare that I enjoy a drama OST enough to search it out, but V from BTS leads one of the drama’s songs (not yet released). It’s the record that plays while Woong is working in his studio, and it’s really all you need to get a sense of the drama’s tone. Enjoy~

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Was a fun premiere week! I was looking forward to the chemistry between our leads, and luckily it’s great thus far. I suspect a big reason for our ML to be working so hard is he likely feels his lack of prospects was part of the reason the FL broke up with him.

All the side characters are solid as well, and the cast is full of actors I’m a fan of, so I’m chomping at the bit for more.

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Loved it! Looking forward to the next episodes and hoping I haven’t jinxed it by loving it so much! *fingers crossed*

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The leads were adorable and the actors were great.

The chronology was more difficult to follow. It's kinda weird to know the beak-up before the way they ended together.

I really liked the idea of the documentary about them when they were young and the second season in the present.

I'm not sure about the second leads for now. Ji-Woong seems to live like his job by watching people without intervening when he seems to be more. NJ is kinda the wild card.

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This one flew under my radar, started it out with zero expectations but turned out to be very entertaining.
I like the chemistry. Both main leads, second leads. I like how the story unfold its layers one by one, I like that it has family's sides as well. Grandma and parents. The older I get the more I love a drama that involves family in its main story.
I'm curious where Ji Ung character stands in the story. The maknae/manager can be frustrating at times but he means only well.
Choi Wooshik never fails, Kim Dami delivers as well.
And, Lee Joonhyuk is gorgeous, as always.
I think I'll stick around.

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This had one of the best premiere week's I've seen in a long time. I love the leads and I'm an absolute sucker for the documentary format. I can see why the documentary went viral because the glimpses we saw of them bickering in high school were entertaining. The flashbacks of their relationship throughout the years left me wanting more too. Their present day meeting with the water and salt cracked me up.

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Such a warm start :) I also liked very much supporting cast. KSC was my favourite from 'Do you like Brahms '. It is sad to see him again second lead and most probably the bad guy :) Park Jin-joo is always fun to watch. Finger crossed , hopefully it will be a good drama :)

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Unfortunately, I found most of these characters quite dull, which is a shame since I had high hopes for the two leads. Also, no artist — no matter how nouveau rich they are — would be able to afford that house <_< and it doesn’t really match his character’s personality at all to buy something that opulent.

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He is renting it. I think it's mentioned in ep 2.

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It is indeed. His assistant literally said he was renting month to month when NJ commented on the home.

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"Also, no artist — no matter how nouveau rich they are — would be able to afford that house".
... nah... some artists definitely could, and even fancier than that...

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My only beef with the house is how can his parents not know he lives there or is doing well? It seems wrong given how much they fuss over him.

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Thank you @missvictrix for the recap! The show was not one I planned to watch, but I eventually caved because having it on Netflix makes it so darn easy.

It is unexpectedly charming both in leads as well as storyline.
Now I leave to go hunt down the OST!🤩

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I really liked it, the second episode more than the first. Her love language is clearly words of affirmation and his are acts, but after 5 years together they didn't realize that. When I say I cackled both when he sprayed her and when he threw salt, hahaha. Sir, let it go. He obviously still likes her too. This is the fluff I need. Also his best friend is slightly jealous of his life and has a crush on Yeon Su. Hopefully this stays fluffy until the end and no weird shenanigans.

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He's such a cute weirdo!

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I find his friend to be the most mysterious character of this drama, whether he likes yeon su is still debatable. But I believe Ji woong does care for him, for example in ep 1 at the basketball when he is feeling a little bit sad when mentioning about missing the past, ji woong tries to cheer him up by distracting him with a basketball match and he went to check if choi is feeling okay after he met yeon soo. And also I think the reason that he accepted to film the documentary in the end is not only because he misses the days that they were teenagers but also he wants to see the both of them smile again.

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Oh 100%, I don't think his jealousy of his family is nefarious, more along the lines of he wishes he had family like that. The weird shenanigans I was talking about was with his debatable crush on Yeon Su. I think he is a good friend too.

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I too like the show so far, especially the possibility of not 2 but 3 men deeply interested in Yeon Su, who is beautiful but not at all glamorous like the idol. But when you said weird shenanigans I immediately jumped to fears of noble idiocy as a plot device. I hate that so much that I get paranoid about it!

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I expect that, unfortunately, like childhood loves, they are ubiquitous in kdramas, but as my love island friends say, it is early days, so we shall see.

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it is also debatable whether it was yeon su he secretly liked.

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That is true, I didn't even think of that.

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This is really my kind of drama and there’s nothing not to like. I thought it’s the kind of Netflix drama that can be watched in one go but never mind, I’ll wait.

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What a shame that we have to wait week by week right?? I want to devour the entire show in one go.

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I know right!😔

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I thought V's song was the best thing about these two episodes. I'm eagerly looking forward to the full release. I usually like reunion love stories, but when the characters act mature. These two still seem childish, so I hope they grow more as they come together again.

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I had high expectations for this drama, but the story is lackluster. Didn`t understand why the writer decided to write all the characters so unlikeable. I understand everybody has their flaws, but these characters were just beyond that level. Despite being described as smart and ambitious FL decided to get drunk with work partner and curse him out? FL seems to always look down on ML too. And ML, who sprays water to their ex after 5 years of break up at the age of 29 or 30? No matter how bad the break up was, it`s just so childish. And that idol NJ, she is the worst. What is with her attitude towards all the people? Dividing people into normal people and celebrity? Duhh? Is she God or something? That manager friends is so nosy too.

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Love this couple!)

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Clicked on this one and liked everything about it: good direction, solid writing and some wonderfully familiar actors. Just what we need as the northern hemisphere gloomy grumps its way to Solstice. Looking forward to a fun drama.

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This was really really good. Great directing, really good acting, and such magnetic leads. This is what the last Park Bo Gum drama before enlistment should have been like! really quite blown away by the natural acting of the two leads, esp CWS.

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@missvictrix I am surely going to enjoy your recaps. I am waiting until this drama gets further in its run and look forward to catching up on these.
I held my breath coming to this thread because I just want this drama to be a gem. I don't care about ratings, just the reception from Beanies. So, I gave out a sigh of relief seeing the generally excited comments. Hogu's Love was my introduction to Choi Woo Shik and I have a soft spot for him as an actor and especially in this project. Kim Da-Mi I have not seen, but I have heard of her acting skill. I am THIS close to plucking up the courage to watch The Witch to see these two on screen together.

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And thank you @missvictrix for highlighting the OST by Kim Taehyung. That was a gorgeous sequence visually and musically. The transition between hearing it as a record playing within the character's world to being outside narrating the scene was splendid.

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I have been looking forward to these two working together since I watched The Witch. I wondered why he kept avoiding the "do you like me that much?" question but still the first two episodes were very enjoyable and hopefully it continues that way to the end.

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high-five, I'm so impressed by their performance on "The Witch", in my opinion, Choi Woong avoids Yeon Soo's question because he is the one who will take action rather than say sweet words. Victor Hugo said “The first symptom of true love in a man is timidity, in a young woman, boldness. ", may be his quote applies to our male lead.

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This drama surprised me as that the 2 episodes seemed to have just gone too fast. Which means, we got absorbed in the stories, with no dull moment (yet). Good start for this drama.

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Yup the episodes went by really fast.

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This is a truly binge-able drama—but I’m watching it live. Huuhuu😭. I don’t want any episode to end. These two already have remarkable chemistry.

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Thanks @missvictrix for a great and nice premiere week weecap! This Kdrama sounded cute already and I totally invested on the entire show (the characters including our leads which I looked forward for the OTP soon, the cinematography, the editing, the background music with a lot of OST here and even the ensembled cast!). So what I am looked forward in four predicted things: a confession scene, a lot of kisses, a happy ending and of course, our 'year/s later...' jump epilogue.

BTW, I am guessing the V (BTS) OST for this drama: Our Summer (Christmas Tree) (this unconfirmed title yet?) and I hope it will be release before Christmas I promise!

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That was cute! I love the writing, please dont fall apart by the 8 episode.

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Such a great premiere and i’m glad the show aired a little later than summer. I like everyone’s dynamics so far and other than the leads I’m really curious about Ji Woong..there was just something about the way he observed Woong’s parents. I hope NJ is not the typical annoying 2FL.

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I'm watching this because of Kim Da Mi. I like her character in Itaewon Class, and so far I love her character in this show. Such a light and fun watch. Can't wait for next week!

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She was the true spark of Itaewon. One of my students had her hair tipped to match the character!

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I'm rooting for Choi Woo Shik and Kim Dami since their movie "The Witch", totally feel the chemistry between them though they are enemies in this film. I still feel unreal when Our beloved summer is on air coz it is too good to be true for me. The execution of the documentary concept is so well-delivered in the first two eps. The scenes "what-if" of Yeon Soo touch me so hard with the image of confused Choi Woong - a man of action rather than expressing his love by words. Can't wait to see the next episode <3.

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Both episodes went by really fast. I also like the couple together but not individually. I guess that's what's keeping me away from it. I'm not as hooked yet bit will keep watching to know how the documentary turns out.

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It is so strange you know.
something I can´t explain... actors... you see them here and there and in things a workd apart. yknow?
ah, I think I have to wait before I watch this drama. im having trouble shaking off the recent impressions. or maybe, watching it will "clear the cookies" faster?

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I was really excited for these leads given their roles in The Witch opposite each other. Curious to see how it develops.

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The two leads had great chemistry in The Witch. Beloved Summer recreates that and the story seems interesting as well. Mr. second lead seems to hold his cards close to his chest but there are hints of a possible crush if I'm not mistaken. Looking forward to the future episodes.

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All the scenes of them in high school are great and they have really good chemistry. Unfortunately, after the epilogue of their breakup in Ep1, its hard to want to root for them to get back together.

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