Why True Beauty is My #1 Favorite K-Drama

True Beauty has everything I’d ever want in a drama. It’s filled with romance, comedy, suspense, family interactions, amazing character arcs, and an extremely satisfying ending. All of the characters added to the plot and each episode was an absolute joy. Did I watch the entire season twice in two weeks? Yes, I did, because this show is a feel-good, warm hug. It is my go-to drama and here’s why! (Spoilers ahead).

Plot: 10/10

True Beauty centers around a high school girl named Ju-Kyung. She’s a fun character–down to earth, loves comic books, and blasts rock n roll. However, she has one thing in her way–her looks. Ju-Kyung is bullied at school and is at the end of her rope. She ends up learning makeup to create a new identity for herself as she transfers schools. This drama’s plot shows viewers that true beauty isn’t what’s on the outside, but the inside. And I love the ride viewers go on to get to that point! The plot was amazing, with perfect pacing and an easy-to-follow storyline. There are also a few subplots within this drama, and it makes every scene interesting and worthwhile. No filler episodes here!

Setting: 10/10

This show has some memorable spots. The comic book shop, Ju-Kyung’s home, Su-o’s apartment, the tteokbokki shop–I would sightsee all of them if I was ever in Korea! These common areas reflected the characters so well. The combic book shop was a safe haven for Su-ho and Ju-Kyung. Ju-Kyung’s home was chaotic but still had some warmth to it. Su-ho’s apartment was almost sterile, like a hospital. They used cool tones and dark colors to reflect his mood and all the heartache he has kept under the surface. And of course, the tteokbokki shop where Ju-Kyung and Seo-jun had dinner together, where you can feel some of the tension between them. All of the settings were so well-crafted to increase the level of storytelling.

Characters: 10/10

Ju-Kyung’s character is so well-portrayed that I tear up every time she cries, even on my 5th watch of this drama! She is loveable, silly, and sincere. You root for her so easily in this show. I loved every moment.

Su-ho is a great contrast to Ju-Kyung. He’s mellow, moody, and rich–the opposite of Ju-Kyung! And yet they make such a great pair together. It’s incredible to watch him soften as he accepts and embraces his affection for her.

And this love triangle, are you kidding me!? I adored Seo-jun. His character’s arc was so impactful. Choosing to let go of Ju-Kyung so she could be with her true love (and the only one she was actually interested in), was such a bittersweet moment.

The side characters were hilarious and meaningful. Every element of this show comes together beautifully to tell this story.

Theme: 10/10

I love the heartfelt message of this drama. Su-ho has a past he can’t seem to get over, but when he lets Ju-Kyung into that heartache he begins to heal. Likewise, Ju-Kyung, as she shows Su-ho her true face, begins to realize that she can be authentic and loved for who she is. There are other character arcs as well, but the two lead’s progress really sticks with you the most! The themes of forgiveness, moving on, growth, and resilience make this drama an encouraging watch again and again.

OST: 10/10

“Call Me Maybe” and “Love So Fine” would always stick in my head! I love the OST to this drama so much. There’s such a span of moods when it comes to the soundtrack for True Beauty. There are the pop hits and then the heartfelt strings and sad ballets. Can any of us forget the feature of “Okie Dokie”?! The music is used so well in True Beauty.

FINAL: 10/10

I have yet to find a drama that tops True Beauty for me. It makes me feel better about myself, gives me a pep whenever I watch it, and reminds me that true beauty is within. I love the cast of characters, the OST, the setting. It feels like home and I plan to return again and again to this wonderful drama.

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