Country: South Korea
Genre Comedy, Music, Romance
Aired: Oct 7, 2009 to Nov 26, 2009
Summary: The management company of the idol group A.N.JELL insisted on adding a new singer to the group, as the lead vocal, Tae Kyung’s voice was hurting. However,the new member, Mi Nam, had to go to the States to repair a botched eye job just before signing the contract. His agent came up with the idea of having his twin sister, Mi Nyu,to stand in for him and pretend that she was her brother. The two of them grew up in an orphanage and Mi Nyu, who was all set to become a nun, agreed to this charade as she didn’t want to spoil her brother’s chance of fame which would make it easier to look for their mother. (MDL summary)
“You’re Beautiful” is one of those dramas that I feel like everybody just needs to watch; it was recommended to me as one of the “drama classics” and since I’m new to dramaland I think it was a good, nice step towards my introduction to this world. It was hilariously funny, perfect to watch when you’re having a bad day and need to lift your spirits up, if you’re ready to go through the amount of cheesiness of this story, that is(but the first part, is mostly genuine comedy). I’m not going to lie, however, while it had many good points, it also had its bad points that definitely shouldn’t be ignored. But I will start from the overall plot.
So, yes, our heroine is a nun in-training, but in order to help her brother which has to undergo an operation in America she agreed to genderbend for him till the first main concert the band was supposed to make as a 4 guys-band. What she did not expect is that this his so-mentioned famous band that her brother auditioned for, A.N.JELL, is formed by a trio of overall BISHIES on all possible levels who are just too full of swag to go unnoticed.
Eh…I want to be a nun and have a talented twin brother which I have to switch places with too now. Otome game style.
The guys have trouble adjusting with their new member at first, being suspicious of “his” talent and “his” overall scaredy-cat attitude, but inbetween all that, causing the leader, perfectionist and clean freak, irreparable emotional damage and making the guys, overall, question their own sexual preferences, which makes for top notch comedy, they manage to warm up to her quite fast into the drama. The rest of the plot concentrates on the premise of hiding a secret from a generally hyper k-pop fanbase and generally enthusiast paparazzi (good way to learn something about the k-pop music industry) and also on the relationship between the three “rock angels” and the heroine, but mostly focused on the leader. What’s particularly rare in these types of stories is when the “lie” does not manage to hold till the dramatic end, on the contrary instead…
Now for my personal in-through notes. While I liked the concept of the genderbend plot and the way it was used, I felt like, sometimes, it turned too “draggy” and some situations were questionable. Why?
1. Go Mi Nyu, the main girl, being a “nun in-training” didn’t manage to excuse her overall Marry Sue-ish dullness. I understand up to innocence, naivety and inexperience, but a naive and innocent person doesn’t particularly also need to be dull. Sure, I can believe it up to the point she believes all of what she is told and is easily manipulated (which was a pretty funny element and lead to interesting situations in her case, actually), but I can’t forgive her lack of deduction and connection skills where “information” is served to her on a silver plater. I found it an incoherence in her character to be able to “read” between the lines in certain situations, but not in others, maybe more important ones. In other words, Mi Nyu sounds and feels too much like an “otome game anime adaption” heroine, where they cut down the consistence of her character and left her to only react at the world around her and not directly contribute to it.
2. Go Mi Nam’s character. Despite him being the cause and trigger of all the following situations presented in the drama and he presumably cares a lot for his twin sister, I found it disappointing that he never made a “proper” appereance where we actually could have been able to figure out what he thought and where he stands in the whole genderbend issue. It was quite weird to see him always and exclusively from the back even if he was supposed to be interpreted by the same actress, which he was, but it was almost as they tried too hard to make him look manlier when he was supposed to look just like his sister (minus boobs and obvious lower part).
3. Shin Woo’s relationship with Mi Nyu. While I do like Shin Woo’s character, I never got an actual “genuine” feeling from his relationship with Mi Nyu. I kept feeling that he was getting “used” throghout all the drama to trigger certain events or simply to make us feel sorry for him… Which.. wasn’t very nice thing to do…i don’t think Shin Woo got a very big character development and was simply used as a “tool”, cruel to say, which is a real shame.
4. While definitely part of the comedy and it was hilarious most of the time, Tae Kyung’s self centered attitude was also often annoying (exclusively) in the last part of the show, simply because the situation didn’t require his sassiness, only making it look forced to me.
5. Most of the scenes in the last 2 episodes felt “useless”. I did really appreciate its attempt to close up all unresolved issues, however, but I didn’t find necessary to see the whole dramatic dispute between the main pairing of the show.
BUT, in the end I was able to forgive it part of it because the last 10 minutes of episode 16 made me fall into a deep case of giggling and fangirling.
Now the good parts ! As I said before, “You’re Beautiful” offers a type of comedy that can’t possibly not make you end up giggling in a corner, but it’s also not only about that; it has an involving plot regarding other serious issues too, how kpop idols live and maybe a bit of reality on kpop fanclubs and how idols have to deal with the reporters, which was a very nice inthrough.
Character wise, Tae Kyung definitely got the most character development, and I never imagined it any other way around. It’s funny now when looking back to the first few episodes. While I did complain about Shin Woo, I do consider Jeremy also had his share of development, despite being a comic relief, and was able to provide us with his own moment of “maturity”. The side cast was also extremely enjoyable for their roles, keeping in a higher regard the second main girl, which, in the end, didn’t turn up that bitchy as one would assume her to be.
The cast was great. Excepting when Park Shin Hye (main girl) seemed to have ler legs tied when walking, I don’t even know who even came with the idea of making her walk like that…xD but even she did a good job on portraying what she needed to portray and I have to praise her for her crying scenes. Jang Geun Suk’s (Tae Kyung-leader) acting was probably my main source of entertainment alongside Hongki’s (Jeremy-blondie drummer). JGS’s evil smirks and jealous sulky expressions and Hongki’s laughs and weirded out, desperate faces made me not able to look at them without cracking a smile. I don’t really know what to say about UEE (second main girl), but she was good enough to make me believe in her He Yi’s “diva” attitude. Yonghwa ( Shin Woo-brown haired guitarist), on the other hand, sometimes was good, sometimes felt lacking, but that is my personal opinion.
The OST is amazing. Trivia: A.N.JELL is one of the most famous fictional-bands in South Korea to the point where they had to hold a REAL concert to make the hyper fans happy.
And so said, my overall score for You’re Beautiful is 8,0. For it’s genre, this drama is definitely a good and entertaining watch, though when it comes to a “complex” story it lacks, but I don’t think it was ever meant to be something more than what it is, so I recommend it to everybody, or at least all of you who like romantic comedies or are into “otome games”.