School 2015: Who Are You? ~ Episode 5 Recap
Seriously, i don’t know why i am doing this to myself. Even though i am certain this attempt is not going to last since it will be too burdensome writing about two Monday-Tuesday dramas, the other one being Heard It Through the Grapevine, i decided to give it a shot and find out by myself where this road will lead me to, hope not to my ruin, but who got ruined by watching too many dramas and eventually writing about them? I suppose many people and i am candidate number one in this troublesome world of South Korean pleasures! If anything happens to me put all the blame on School 2015’s endearing world that has managed to captivate my interest alongside Kim So Hyun’s stellar acting and Yook Sung Jae’s utterly intriguing figure! Back to my desk, homework is on its way!
Eun Bi tries to establish herself as Eun Byul without forgetting who she really is after she found herself in this new reality she embraced all of a sudden under many circumstances. The torments of the past seemed to had been buried once and for all, but the harsh face of reality had a different opinion. Nothing reached an end, everything begins at this very point and the signs on the horizon appear more than ominous. Embracing the two-fold world of Kim So Hyun’s character at this point is too much of a burden to bear.
Kang So Young’s father is a prosecutor and she always manages to get away with everything she does, even if she was the abettor of Eun Bi’s suicidal attempt. Changing school environment was the greatest punishment she could ever receive and she didn’t get transferred to just any school. It’s a renowned high school where the children of many profound figures are being schooled at. Justice was never served and a new nightmare seems to be spreading its wings right in front of Eun Bi who is going to be So Young’s classmate anew. So Young knows that she doesn’t have much power for now and she puts on her social and cheerful mask in order to be embraced by her new classmates while the stench underneath the surface keeps hiding its real contours.
So Young has managed to become one of my most hated figures in the world of South Korean dramas in such a short period of time. I don’t want to imagine how much more i can hate her or how much more pain she can cause to Eun Bi, but i am pretty certain both of them will happen, scene by scene, episode by episode. Jo Soo Hyang is doing an exceptional work as a relentless bullying machine and emotionless oxygen-wasting humanoid. As time passes by she gets closer to Eun Bi’s friends and tries to gather information about her from pretty much everyone, except from Tae Gwang who’s already witnessed that something’s just not right in the new student’s behavior concerning Eun Byul.
No matter how hard Tae Gwang might try not to be happy at Eun Byul’s presence or even while simply thinking of her he never achieves it! Eun Byul always manages to enlighten his smile like a ray of light in the thick darkness. His father wants to send Tae Gwang to study abroad and even though he doesn’t agree with it he doesn’t have the luxury of disagreeing, at least for the time being. Instead of solving the problem his father seems to be avoiding it anew, just like he did one year ago when he sent him to the mental institution. Teacher Kim disagrees with the principal, instead of sending Tae Gwang away he should be by his side, not like a ghost as he is now, but like the paternal figure he never cherished.
Setting aside all the peripheral difficulties and daily emotional struggles, Tae Gwang never leaves behind his hilarious and carefree persona! Whenever he gets the chance he pulls it by the hair and sets sail on another comical journey! Of course i am referring to the matched face to face glass-cleaning parody punishment alongside his sworn secret bromance enemy Gi Tae and the shoe-cleaning process or his selca with Eun Byul’s schoolbag pretending that the bag’s life is in danger in case she doesn’t appear! Gradually, Tae Gwang and Yi Ahn’s tension starts taking shape when it comes to their feelings for Eun Byul and the race has already began!
Yi Ahn’s feelings for Eun Byul remain strong and as time passes by they get stronger due to her supposed amnesiac state of mind. He’s willing to help her recall her real self and bring to the surface all the memories she’s been missing, but Eun Byul doesn’t want to proceed. Eventually and under specific circumstances Eun Byul will ask him to help her “remember” in order to cope with the shadows from the past that become threatening at the present. As promised and while being heartbroken after witnessing Eun Byul playing with Taek Gwang, Yi Ahn left his first national tournament medal at her doorstep. Even though Eun Bi can’t feel the emotional connection of Yi Ahn and Eun Byul, she’s thankful and places the medal inside the box where various keepsakes prove their special relationship throughout the years.
As one of the most popular promising athletes, Yi Ahn has his chances in advertisement and a representative of K-Plan Inc. approaches him, but he’s not interested and uses as an excuse his excessive training. It’s not always easy being an athlete and Yi Ahn has his own problems, his shoulder is hurt, but he’s neither paying a visit to a doctor nor he mentions it to his coach. It would automatically mean that he would be unable to partake in tournaments until he gets totally healed and he’s willing to take all the risks of getting severely injured in order to partake in the next tournament, at least for the time being.
Eun Bi gets deeply emotional and breaks apart as soon as she starts searching for information about her suicide attempt after having been consecutively bullied and unjustly expelled from school. Every time she stares at the picture from Love’s House she gets nostalgic and she decides to call them on the phone. Ra Jin picks up the phone and Eun Bi wants so badly to talk to her, she utters just a few words and by the time Ra Jin starts realizing that it could be Eun Bi she puts an end to the phone call and bursts into tears. Her mother witnesses the moment and Eun Bi cries her heart out in her embrace. “When we’re having a hard time, let’s not hold back our tears.”
Eun Byul’s mother is willing to do just anything for her daughter, even if this means that her grades will drop a bit during the semester. She’s a loving and caring woman that is not willing to take away Eun Byul’s most precious years and sacrifice them to the factor of exhaustive studying. She meets Min Joon’s mother and declares Eun Byul’s freedom from the tutoring group while she’s being considered irresponsible for not forcing her child to study more and more. But she’s not that worried, she’s got another “sponsor”, Shi Jin’s mother. Every time the tutoring group’s having a gathering time is clicking differently and rather violently to Shi Jin’s ears while everyone applies to the tutor’s rules by answering one question per minute; she simply can’t pace with the flow.
Since Eun Byul’s no longer part of the team her classmates consider Shi Jin the next sponsor and they should be treating her nicely from now on, it’s a burden she can’t bear and she’s becoming the public wallet of the class under different parameters. She wants to quit the tutoring team, but her mother doesn’t want to understand, she only cares about her own ambitions and she never really listened to her daughter. Too much pressure and so many restrictions upon her own dreams shattered everything she had in mind, turning her into someone who doesn’t have anything she would like to do and feeling useless at the same time.
Soo In makes her appearance many times as she contacts Eun Byul and informs her that she would like to meet her at the library and then she won’t bother her anymore. The library book reference wasn’t helpful the first time she went there and she didn’t “meet” Soon In, but the next time, after a girl informed her that Soo In had passed away a year ago Eun Bi finally found a card saying “Eun Byul, even if you pretend not to see me, it’s okay, you are still my only friend.” Along with it she found pages that were part of Eun Byul’s diary and things started getting even more frightening as soon as she finds out that someone had been stalking Eun Byul all this time and he/she was even managing to break into her house whenever she was alone at home. Asking Yi Ahn to help her “remember” what she was like in the past is matter of life and death and she grants him a wish for his forthcoming aid.
Eun Bi finds herself cornered between So Young’s attempts to quench her thirst of suspicion and between the fact that her friends steadily approve her no matter what. The more information So Young receives the more she finds herself closer to the truth and from the arch hypothesis that Eun Bi and Eun Byul were sisters everything becomes more apparent after finding out about the different handwriting. Eun Byul is Eun Bi and So Young’s hateful words cause the desired reaction from Eun Bi which proves her real identity. So Young’s life suddenly has a new meaning and the cogwheels of malevolent thoughts and eventually actions have started rotating in the speed of light. What kind of person refers to another one who was supposed to had unjustly passed away like this, “hey loser, you haven’t changed at all”? Right, that kind of person, So Young.
Thoughts: The 5th episode was a pretty strong one, i like the presentations of mothers and “mothers” that differentiate the deeply caring content from the psychologically violent facade. At this point Eun Bi needs to be protected from the visible and unseen threats around her and i really do hope she will tell her mother about the missing pages from the journal, she tried to do so, but she let it drown in silence and silence never helps, it can only get things worse like we witnessed in Eun Byul’s mysterious disappearance. Except for the diary and the figure stalking her, her mother should be informed about So Young and the fact that she was the one that had forced her to try putting an end to her own life. At this point we all know the reason behind So Young’s bottomless hate towards Eun Bi, she was the only to stand up for her classmate’s rights as the class president. She was probably the first person to threaten So Young’s superiority with so simple yet righteous reasons and she paid the price of her humane side by becoming an outcast at first.
Eun Bi wants to become Eun Byul and she’s willing to receive all the information required from Yi Ahn. Is it a wish or a curse? It feels more like the second option, but it’s something she must embrace in order to understand the circumstances in more depth. Eun Bi has to face many threats. So Young’s reappearance, In Soo’s ghost that’s more alive than ever before, the unknown(?) follower while at the same time she finds herself in the midst of bittersweet nostalgia when it comes to her actual past, the one she can’t cherish when nightmarish memories vanish and the beautiful moments come to the surface. Having to bear two crosses at the same time, the one of Eun Bi and the one of Eun Byul, feels inhuman with just one heart pounding underneath her chest and two eyes that have seen way too much event though she’s so young. School 2015 is a growing addiction with all the necessary amounts of feels and a more than welcome sense of mystery that floats all over the place, but it’s humorous too, the way a high school drama should be!