Earlier this week, I was looking back over the past few months of posts, trying to decide which drama to feature for this week’s Friday Night Drama and I was mortified to find that I had yet to say anything about one of my most favorite dramas in the whole wide world, the delightfully fluffy, idol-filled treat, You’re Beautiful. So here I sit, ready to dive into what has to be the most influential drama I have ever had the pleasure to watch… Are you ready?
Written by my favorite drama writing duo, the Hong Sisters, You’re Beautiful originally aired on SBS from early October to late November, 2009. While the drama didn’t get the highest ratings when it aired, it has certainly garnered a large international following and has inspired remakes in both Japan (Ikemen desu ne, 2011) and Taiwan (Fabulous Boys, 2013).
The story-line of You’re Beautiful reminds me quite a lot of something you’d find in a manga, which is probably why I like it so much. The story follows the adventures of Go Mi Nyu (Park Shin Hye), a timid, nun-in-training who is approached by a rather desperate band manager, Ma Hoon Yi (Kim In Kwon), with a very strange request. You see, Mi Nyu’s twin brother, Go Mi Nam, has just signed a contract with a major music label and is set to become the fourth member of the incredibly popular idol group, A.N.JELL. The problem is, Mi Nam has had a little cosmetic surgery mishap and is in the States, recovering but he needs to be in Korea, preparing to join the band. Not wanting to face the wrath of the label’s CEO, Manager Ma beggs Mi Nyu to pretend to be her brother, just until Mi Nam has fully recovered and can take his place in the band.
As one would expect, Mi Nyu isn’t keen on the idea of pretending to be her brother, especially not since she’s about to fly to Italy and take her orders but Manager Ma points out that the whole reason Mi Nam wanted to join this band in the first place was in an attempt to find the mother that abandoned them both, years ago. Unable to resist such a request, Mi Nym agrees to become her brother and before she knows it, she’s caught up in the wild and crazy world of an idol, surrounded by fans, anti-fans and three of the hottest guys in Korea, the members of A.N.JELL, Hwang Tae Kyung (Jang Geun Suk), Kang Shin Woo (Jung Yong Hwa) and Jeremy (Lee Hong Ki).
Now I could spend a very long time, talking about everything that happens in You’re Beautiful but if I did, you’d have no reason to watch it and let’s face it, with a cast of characters this amazing, you know you’re gonna want to watch it for yourself so I’ll stop here. To be perfectly honest, You’re Beautiful is another one of those delightfully fluffy dramas that doesn’t really have a lot of depth but the characters are so undeniably adorable that you can’t help but love them. The drama itself follows the basic Hong Sisters’ format, starting off all hilarious and fluffy before morphing into a more serious drama in the middle, that eventually leads to an ending light enough to leave you with a smile. As in the case with most dramas, there’s quite a bit of ridiculous that you have to overlook and if you’re one of those who watches a gender-bending drama and spends the entire time frustrated because you can’t figure out why none of the characters can see that the girl-pretending-to-be-a-boy is actually a girl, you’re probably going to want to throw things as you watch but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give it a go.
Honestly, I can tolerate quite a lot of fluff and ridiculousness in my dramas because well, it’s a drama and that’s just of how things go. I don’t care if things are believable as long as I’m entertained and You’re Beautiful kept me delightfully entertained throughout its sixteen episodes. Sure, there were moments of frustration but when you’ve got an excuse to
drool over watch Jang Geun Suk, Jung Yong Hwa and Lee Hong Ki all at the same time… Well, there’s really nothing you can complain about. (Yup, I’m a fangirl!)
So why would I call such a fluffy little drama one of the most influential I’ve ever watched? I’m so glad you asked! My reason for being so dramatic is quite simple. You’re Beautiful is one of the first dramas I ever watched (I believe it was my third, actually) but it was the one drama that solidified my addiction to, not only dramas, but K-Pop and second leads as well. Until I started watching You’re Beautiful I had never bothered to look up any of the actors starring in the dramas I’d watched. (Well, okay, I did look up Kim Hyun Joong after watching Playful Kiss but I never really got into SS501 so it doesn’t count.) However, as I watched You’re Beautiful I began to think to myself, “You know, the members of A.N.JELL look way too natural on-stage to be just actors. I bet they’re musicians as well.” And wouldn’t you know it, I was right! I think it was because I suffered from such a bad case of second lead syndrome as I watched this drama, I happily followed Yong Hwa down the rabbit hole that led me into the wonderful world of K-Pop and I’ve been living here, in perfect bliss, ever since.
So there you have it. My take on one of my favorite dramas and the history of my journey into the Hallyu obsessed world I now call home. I’m sure I’m not the only person out there who loves this drama (or who suffered SLS because of Yong Hwa’s character) but I suppose I could be… Whether I am or not, I’d love to know what you think of You’re Beautiful so be sure to leave me a comment below!