Beauty Inside came out of the gate pretty strong its first week. Did the second week hold up? Join The Fangirls as we chat about our gorgeous leads, fun side characters, and the conundrum of people insisting you’ve changed when all you want to do is stay the same.
I honestly thought after last week that Do Jae and Se Kye were going to start confiding in each other. Instead, we spent episode 3 & 4 with them trying to publicly out one another with the secrets they kind of sorta think they’ve got figured out. They are definitely NOT on the same team, and they put each other in some pretty awkward (funny!) situations around friends and family. We also get to know more about Do Jae’s extended family, wacky grandpa included. And they introduce a possible second love line… or two.
Kmuse: Ha. I love how each of our leads is using the dating “scandal” to their own advantage. Both by admitting it and denying it at various points throughout the episodes. Their use of the paparazzi to create their own unique way of flirting is super cute. Even if they don’t realize that is what it is as of yet.
Clkytta: I love this “scandal”. First off, they keep showing up in each other’s company and it’s obvious they have chemistry. Second, I want them to just date already. Finally, I think the more anyone protests that they aren’t a couple, well, that just means “not yet”.
Drama Geek: I like that Se Gye is crafty and knows how to protect herself. Sadly, her secret is just so much bigger than anything Do Jae has on his side, she doesn’t get the upper hand. At this point I don’t feel Do Jae is flirting with her; he’s being pretty calculating and during this point in the episodes he’s really putting up all the protective walls. With everything she could lose (her freedom included) I’m actually surprised she isn’t more like him.
Kdrama Jen: I really love their chemistry and the way they banter back and forth.
Step-Sis and the Priest
Kmuse: It is so refreshing to find out that Step-Sis has a softer side beneath her prickly outer persona. It is also interesting how the writer portrays Step-Sis as another victim of re-marriage. Someone who is just trying to find a place in a messed up family. It gives a humanity to step-sis’s character and allows me to care about her story.
Clkytta: I’m sorry, I’m still cracking up that hot priests are the thing this year. I also found it interesting how they are exploring the awkward and uncomfortable parts of being in a blended family as an adult. All those expectations and the fear of not fitting in. Ugh. (DG: I picture a guy in a motorcycle helmet going around to all of the writers in Kdramaland delivering a top secret note that just says: Robots are out, and hot priests are in.)
Drama Geek: Thank you writer-nim. I seriously couldn’t handle this actress being the cold rival who only wants to take over the company. So boring. Throw in an adorable hot priest to be, and you have plenty of room for character development.
Kdrama Jen: I really do wonder if there are big meetings where drama producer people sit around and discuss upcoming drama trends. A few years ago it was amnesia for everyone, then we had the year of multiple personality dramas, then it was robots, and now, apparently, it is all about the hot priests. Actually, I am fine with this trend. This aspiring priest, though, is kind of more puppy priest than hot blooded priest in my opinion. I do like that he is helping us see the softer side of the step-sister.
Kmuse: After learning that I didn’t hate Step-Sis I am even more shocked to find myself crushing on her and wanna-be hottie priest super hard. They are flipping adorable. She is a porcupine and he is a golden retriever. Two animals that shouldn’t work but somehow do. To the point that I might be just as invested in their relationship as I am of the OTP’s.
Clkytta: I like this couple. I think that they have cute chemistry and that maybe he can help her to loosen up a little. The whole priest thing is a problem though. Priests don’t get married right? He’s very human and I think it will be interesting to see how they twist this part of the story. Will he give up his dream of being a priest for love, or will these two just fade into the background?
Kdrama Jen: I think the fact that he is a WANNA-BE priest will make everything just fine. Remember You’re Beautiful? Park Shin Hye’s character was a nun in training, but she left it all behind for true love (and a stint as a K-pop star.)
Do Jae’s Family
Kmuse: Last week I had decided that I was going to hate all of Do Jae’s family. They were obviously well off and worried more about money and prestige then substance. That was proven false (mostly) at the wonderfully awkward lunch. Sure everyone was snappy but I think it was more a matter of not knowing how to give in and share their respective parents than anything else. Even the grandpa was funny with his insistence that his son-in-law calls him father already. So at this point, I am putting my prejudice on hold until someone actually does something to break up my OTP.
Clkytta: Hmmm. Yes, it was an awkward lunch for sure. I think there is way too much competition between the step-siblings to make everything all fine and wonderful though. Grandpa plays them against each other constantly which is stressing out the step sister. Do Jae is blood family so he has the confidence of the blood ties, but she is at the whim of an extended family that she has to constantly prove herself to. They aren’t bad people, but I feel like all of them are careless in the way they treat each other which is why everything is so awkward and uncomfortable.
Drama Geek: I really don’t get the grandpa. There has to be some secret from the past where he hates Do Jae’s father or something. His mother remarried when they were older so it really doesn’t make sense why he dislikes his grandson so much. Especially when he’s not a screwup. I still need more info and this wacky lot.
Kdrama Jen: So.. Confession time. I was watching this WITH Clkytta and Drama Geek, but I fell asleep during this part. It wasn’t because I was bored. It was simply because I was really tired.
Do Jae, why you so closed off?
Kmuse: Do Jae obviously has some daddy issues along with all the stress of his Prosopagnosia situation. Which creates a situation where Do Jae chooses to keep everyone at a distance. So it is no surprise that he isn’t opening up to Se Kye. The opposite is true with Se Kye who seems to be putting all her feelings and inadequacies out there for Do Jae to see. This creates an interesting dynamic with there being an equality that I was not expecting in their relationship.
Clkytta: I think Se Kye feels comfortable with him because he’s the same as she is, even if he doesn’t actually change, he’s flawed. His aloofness and reserve only add to his trust factor as he doesn’t freak out about her issues. He’s protected her at her most vulnerable so she is willing to step out on the ledge and see if he will push her off. I like how open she is being with him. He’s not going to be able to hold back from her for long.
Drama Geek: I do get that he’s surrounded by sharks in his business life. And he doesn’t seem to have a personal life. Because he can’t recognize people, that probably makes it hard to create lasting connections. While trying to get screenshots I found it difficult to find many scenes where he was smiling. Even when he’s with Se Kye. It will be fun to see her break down all of his walls and let loose a bit.
Kdrama Jen: I like the juxtaposition of his closed off self and her need to share. I just don’t think he is going to be able to resist. It will be fun to watch her crack his shell and force him to connect.
Will you sleep with me?
Kmuse: I laughed when he requested that she sleep with him. I wasn’t overly surprised that it was just a cliffhanger bait. We are only at the 2nd week after all.
Clkytta: Please tell me we get a cohabitation trope soon. It’s my favorite!! While I don’t think we will have any sexy times anytime soon, I’m forecasting some snuggles and shared sleeping quarters.
Drama Geek: I’m still confused. Once they get to know each other better, does he really just want to share a house with her? I’m not sure if he’s giving just one meaning here. I’ll choose to believe he wants sexy times once they get to know one another.
Kdrama Jen: For a split second I forgot we were in a Kdrama and only a few episodes in. Yeah, my little whoop of surprise was quickly followed by, “Oh. Right. He probably just means SLEEP.”
Can I get a little love, Daddy… uh… I mean PD-nim
Kmuse: Se Kye has some serious daddy issues that surround her first director. I’m not kidding, I seriously thought he secretly was her father at one point. Just the way she was acting was very over the top.
Clkytta: This was heartbreaking. The director’s approval obviously means a lot to her and I wonder if this is somehow linked to when she first started to change. He sees her as “someone who has changed” and she feels like he should be the one person who knows the real her. In her heart, he is a father figure and I need there to be some kind of closure and acceptance with this guy.
Drama Geek: I love that the show keeps bringing us back to the weight of her situation. The movie was extremely melancholy and I like when they show how serious this situation is for her. She doesn’t want to change, but the reality is that she has changed. Each new face has created a new layer to who she is as a person. When she goes and sits in her room of pictures, those aren’t just random faces. They are all her. She’s lived in their skin, walked in their shoes, and spoken their language. It’s not just her habit of running away that has made her different.
Kdrama Jen: I agree. That scene in the room with all of her pictures was really moving. It was the perfect way to remind us of all of the perspectives she has experienced and challenges she has faced. I would think it would be crazy hard to adjust to each of those situations. The scene with her director and the room of photos really did serve to remind us that this is not a regular obstacle to overcome of the way to OTP status.
Drinking besties to the rescue.
Kmuse: This was one of my favorite scenes this week. Everyone, especially Se Kye looked so beautiful. It also solidified that her besties are, well, the best. Their ability to cheer Se Kye up when she is having a crappy day just makes me happy.
Clkytta: Real friends pick you up and brush you off and tell everyone you are the prettiest girl in the room. It’s about the love and support of people who see the real you even at your worst and they stand by you. This little lovefest is one of my favorite scenes so far. *It also makes me wish I lived closer to all my Kbesties. (DG: HUGS!) (Kdrama Jen: I still say we either need the Reply 1988 neighborhood or we splurge on the house from Chicago Typewriter.)
Drama Geek: I hope we get a drinking scene with the bestie every week. They are the best, and I love that she can just be herself (no matter what body she’s in).
Kdrama Jen: I love their little crew. Besties are the best!
Who needs a bestie when you’ve got the cutest dog in the world? Maybe when you drunk dial….
Kmuse: That dog is flipping adorable! I giggled out loud when she drunk dialed Do Jae and promptly showed how talented an actress she was by playing opposite her dog. So cute!
Clkytta: Please tell me that by the end of the show he gets a dog too. Please! This dog obviously has talent, style, and grace. As well as the best dog groomer ever, she’s so well put together!
Drama Geek: The drunk dial was hilarious and the first time I saw Do Jae really react to her without a ton of walls up. How can you not smile and her ridiculousness. Anyone else notice the dog always matches her?
Kdrama Jen: That dog is so ridiculously cute and then you hear its name. I know the subs spell it differently, but it is basically King Kong. It is so wrong for such an adorable little ball of fluff that it just seems perfect.
Contract relationships solve everything!
Kmuse: Contact relationships are the best! Logically they make no sense at all but the characters act as if they are completely reasonable. It also forces a closeness between the OTP that makes me squeal with joy. I loved this scene at the theater where Do Jae declares that she is the best actress since he can find her in a crowd of other actors. SQUEEEE!
Clkytta: I love a good contract relationship! No one can resist the contract relationship, you start out thinking you’ve put a time limit and restrictions on everything and BAM! They can’t live without each other anymore! No one in kdramaland walks away from a contract relationship unscathed.
Drama Geek: This contract relationship has no real logic. LOL. It was like Do Jae had to make up some excuse and puts rules around their interactions just so he’d be okay with spending time with her. I’m not complaining because it means more OTP time, and possible cohabitation.
Kdrama Jen: This is probably one of the most absurd and unrealistic drama tropes (well, it’s not as bad as amnesia), yet I can’t help but love contract relationship dramas. The idea that it is all just temporary makes all of their moments together seem more precious. It is also, as the other fangirls have pointed out, a fabulous way to ensure we will get plenty of couple time–and maybe some accidental skinship.
Kmuse: The action isn’t moving as fast as I was expecting between our leads. But I am surprisingly OK with that. It gives me the time to really enjoy the relationships between the various friends. I think if we focused only on the main relationship we would be missing out on so much more. Especially the Step-Sis/Hottie Priest love-line which I stan that like no other. As long as we continue to get a well fleshed out ensemble cast I am happy with how things are going.
Clkytta: I agree with Kmuse. It’s not moving at a rapid pace, but they are really setting up the plot well. I like the side relationships, and I love the friendships. I need Not Lee Min Ho Anymore to have a side story. He is killing it as the secretary.
Drama Geek: Here is where I’ll admit that episode 4 should have but cut by about 10 or 15 minutes. It just meandered a bit there in the middle and I wanted a little more focus. I do appreciate that the side couple is getting screen time and they are pretty cute right now so I don’t mind. Next week is when it should really start heating up, and I’m excited to see a few more smiles, and maybe some more cameos.
Kdrama Jen: I love the chemistry, but I also think they need to pick up the pace a bit. I am still invested, but this last episode did drag a bit for me here and there. I think I am also waiting for the next transformation; I am interested to see how that impacts Do Jae and, in turn, their relationship. I do like that we are getting fresh and fun moments (the druk dial, the play on words when they kept giving her different contracts), but also some gentle reminders that Se Kye has a very big issue impacting her life. I am looking forward to the next set of episodes, and I promise I will make sure I am well-rested before watching!
See you at the next transformation,
Dramas with a Side of Kimchi