Nandhini Lakshmi. M, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu
“If there is such a thing as a ‘miracle’, that would be another name for ‘hard work’.” ‘To the Beautiful You’ is a rom-com school drama aired in the second half of 2012 with star-studded casts. It is the adaptation of a Japanese manga where the story revolves around a girl who disguises herself as a boy and goes to an all-boys school to make her role model not give up on his sport.
Goo Jae-hee, aka Jay Dawson played by f(x)‘s Sulli, is a Korean-American girl living in the States. She’s an athlete who wishes to discontinue both athletics and school dir to being bullied of her Asian looks, but after getting inspired by the high jump gold medalist Kang Tae-joon, she decides to continue her sport and stands on her own feet. Kang Tae-joon played by SHINee’s Choi Min-ho is a high jump athlete who became a celebrity after achieving the best record in the World Junior Championships. Unfortunately, he got into an accident which could end his passion. After rehabilitation, he decides not to jump again. Jae-hee worries about him and she is very determined to change his decision and desires to see him “fly” i.e., jump again. To do so, she cuts her long air, disguises herself as a boy, and gets a transfer to Genie High School, an all-boys school where Tae-joon attends and coincidently becomes her roommate. Though she faced some hurdles at first, she started to adapt well to the new environment and became friends with everyone in the dorm. She constantly encourages Tae-joon to jump again and puts enormous effort in any way she can help him. The school nurse, Ki Tae-young, finds out Jae-hee’s true identity. At first, he was against the notion of her being disguised as a boy, but eventually, starts to support her because of her valid reasons.
Cha Eun-gyeol played by Lee Hyun-woo, is an outstanding football player who’s focused to play in an international tournament. He becomes Jae-hee’s best friend and at some point, he gets attracted to her which constantly leads him to questioning his sexuality. Meanwhile, Tae-joon discovers Jae-hee’s identity and begins to fall for her while Seol Han-na played by Kim Ji-won, a well-known gymnast and childhood friend of Tae-joon’s, starts to doubt Jae-hee’s real identity. Despite facing some encounters, was Jae-hee able to make her role model fly again?
The storyline gives every character their unique role to move the story forward. Unexpected cameos such as Kim Woo-bin and Nam Ji-hyun were cast perfectly where both were one-sided lovers, accepted reality and gave up their loved ones. Ki Tae-young played an important role by supporting the leads and acts as a protective barrier to them. Kang Ha-neul and Seo Jun-young who stood along with the main leads, expressed their character in their best ways. Seo Jun-young’s acting level was phenomenal with his dad jokes. Kim Ji-won diligently portrayed the elegancy of a gymnast. From knowing everything about Tae-joon, roaming in the boys’ dorm even at night. tagging along with her crush where ever he goes, to non-reasonable small fights between her and Eun-gyeol; she portrayed everything perfectly. Lee Hyun-woo’s acting as Cha Eun-gyeol mesmerized me. His love for his passion, his care towards his roommate and others, his efforts to win Jae-hee’s attention, his care & affection towards her doesn’t change a bit after knowing he was displeased about the truth. I loved the way he foolishly tests his sexuality with random things. Though he showed his happy and naughty side, there was always a painful and dejected part inside him which should’ve been justified.
Why you should watch this K-Drama?
I started to watch this drama because of Min-ho and later got excited to know about the disguised boy and other stuff. Min-ho practically lived as Tae-joon, the way he tried hard to jump again; the practices and workouts he took for it seemed like a pro-player. Showing a cold attitude in the beginning and a change in his attitude towards Jae-hee, his possessiveness and jealousy looked natural. He always protected her, even in small things that may lead to trouble for her. His relationship with his parents, coach, teachers and even with Sangchu (his pet dog) was understanding and adorable. This drama was my first introduction to Sulli and wondered how (s)he made me fall for Jae-hee. She showed us the character’s love for a sport, boldness to disguise herself, constantly trying to win Tae-joon’s trust and convincing him till the end. Sulli wins our hearts by her acting as a rough & tough boy, playful in front of Sangchu and when she consoles Han-na as a caretaker and a well-wisher.
The drama has 16 episodes and as expected, it has a wonderful ending with truly unexpected couples. This drama taught me to do what I love most and put my everything to do it, a strong will power can change everything. In short, “Never quit from anything because you never know who you’re inspiring!”
Hope you all enjoy watching this drama and let’s create more such miracles in our lives.