This week’s featured drama is another lighthearted, romantic comedy full of cuteness, fluff and cross-dressing female leads and while it may not be the world’s most profound drama, To The Beautiful You is still a fun and entertaining drama, perfect for those lazy summer days when we have nothing more to do than watch hours upon hours of adorableness. (That is the point of summer, isn’t it?)
Originally airing on SBS from mid-August to early October, 2012 To The Beautiful You is based on the shōjo manga, Hanazakari no Kimitachi e written by Hisaya Nakajo and it’s the story of an American high school student, Gu Jae Hee (Sulli) who’s smitten by high jumper, Kang Tae Joon (Minho), after watching him compete in a televised track and field competition. Tae Joon suffers a potentially career-ending injury not long after and Jae Hee takes it upon herself to travel to Korea, enroll in the same school as Tae Joon and personally cheer him back to health. There’s only one problem with Jae Hee’s grand plan but it’s a big one… Tae Joon attends an all-boys school. As any heroine in her shoes would do, Jae Hee decided to disguise herself as a boy and before she knows it, she finds herself being introduced to Tae Joon as his new roommate. Success!
As one would expect from any manga based, gender-bender, high school centered, romantic comedy, Jae Hee’s secret identity doesn’t stay a secret for long and Tae Joon quickly finds himself stuck somewhere between loathing of his new roommate and feeling a strange need to protect her. As this awkward relationship grows, Tae Joon naturally finds himself falling for Jae Hee but he’s not the only one interested. Cha Eun Gyul (Lee Hyun Woo) quickly becomes Jae Hee’s best friend and, as one would expect, there are a whole lot of confusion and frustration as Eun Gyul tries to decide if his feelings for Jae Hee are merely platonic. Beyond the obvious love-triangle and the massive amount of chaos that one would expect to find in a drama where the leading lady is living in a dorm full of guys, there’s also the rivalry between Tae Joon and Joo Ji Chul (Kang Ha Neul) which provides a fair amount of tension and spurs Tae Joon to try even harder to overcome his injury and get back into competition.
Like I said in the beginning, To The Beautiful You is really nothing more than a whole lot of fluff but that doesn’t mean it’s not enjoyable. Personally, I enjoy fluffy dramas, especially when all of the dramas I’ve been watching lately have been a bit on the heavier side. I like to break up the intensity with a drama that does nothing more than entertain me and that’s exactly what To The Beautiful You is… It’s entertaining. Of course I am completely biased on this score because I’m also a lover of manga (especially gender-bender, romantic comedies) so it only makes sense that I enjoyed this drama. There’s just so much fun to be had when your leading lady has disguised herself as a boy and even when you spend pretty much the entire drama going, “There’s no way any of this would actually happen in real life.”
If the humor and sweetness of the story isn’t enough to convince you to give To The Beautiful You a try, perhaps the fact that a good portion of the cast are also idols, will do the trick. SHINee’s Minho, f(x)’s Sulli, ZE:A’s Hwang Kwanghee are at the top of the list but the number of cameos in this drama is also pretty impressive. EXO-K, Kim Woo Bin, Sangchu and LEDApple (just to name a few) all make appearances which means pretty much every fangirl in the world can find someone to squee over while watching this drama.
I suppose if light and fluffy, idol-filled dramas aren’t your thing, To The Beautiful You isn’t going to float your boat but if you can handle a fair amount of cheese and can find humor in the ridiculous, then this drama was made just for you. Sweet and silly, To The Beautiful You may not be the world’s greatest drama but it’s still a drama I enjoyed watching and I think you will too. Like it or hate it, I’d love to know what you think so be sure to let me know all about it by leaving me a comment below!