Omg I didn’t even mean to play with the title until I had written it haha; so I have just finished watching another K-Drama and I just had to write about it, RIGHT NOW. The last K-Drama I watched was ‘Faith’ with Lee Min-Ho which was quite a long and serious drama, so I wanted to watch something light-hearted and fun!! I chose this one because when I did a synopsis read of it, it really pulled me in!!
Introducing: ‘Baby-Faced Beauty’ (also known as ‘Youthful Beauty’ or ‘Pretty Young Woman’), a 2011 drama that aired on KBS2 for 20 episodes; originally 18 episodes long, it was extended by 2 more episodes due to its popularity, and ranked number 1 in its primetime timeslot for five consecutive weeks. In my opinion, 16-20 episodes is long enough for people to enjoy the storyline without it being dragged out and at risk from becoming boring. Even though I absolutely love BOF, still ranking number 1 on my list, I felt it was just a little too long for my liking. The storyline seemed really fun and had a cast that was completely new to me (except for 1 actress)!!
The plot surrounds a 34 year old woman who is the sole provider for her family, dealing with the responsibilities and bad credit that her family struggle with; she was forced into the position when a situation that caused her to give up her dream of attending college and becoming a fashion designer occurred. When she loses her job of 14 years, she is forced to take an opportunity rejected by her sister in order to continue providing for her family whilst living her dream; the opportunity however, forces her to lie in order to gain employment and new situations arise that make continuing the lie so much harder…
Lee So-Young (Jang Na-Ra) once dreamt of going to college and becoming a fashion designer; just as she got the acceptance letter, she was forced to give up all of her dreams to take responsibility and provide for her family. After working for a fabric factory for 14 years, she is made redundant and replaced by a much younger employee; desperate for a job, she begins to apply and is taken on at a small seamstress shop. On her first day, her spendthrift sister steals a designer jacket from the store and So-Young is ultimately blamed since her boss is untrusting of her; in a bid to get the jacket back, So-Young finds her sister at a club but the jacket is passed to an unsuspecting Choi Jin-Wook. So-Young wrestles with Jin-Wook to retrieve the jacket whilst he tries to prevent her from stealing it, unaware that it was stolen from her in the first place, and together they cause a mass amount of havoc and damage to the club. Whilst cleaning up in the bathroom, So-Young persuades Jin-Wook to help her out of the window so she can then lift him up and together they can escape, but she is spotted by the guards so kicks Jin-Wook in the face and runs off with the jacket, leaving him to take the rap. Jin-Wook pursues her by posting posters everywhere in order to get her to pay her share of the fine; knowing that this will come to light, So-Young takes an opportunity that her sister rejects at a fashion company called ‘The Style’. With her only advantage of having a ‘baby-face’, she is able to lie to everyone that she is called Lee So-Jin and 25 years old under her sister’s resume; realising that this is a massive opportunity to live her dream and provide for her family, she continues to lie. Unfortunately Jin-Wook is also an employee at The Style causing her more drama, and some other faces in the company will go out of their way to watch her fall…
Choi Jin-Wook (Choi Daniel) is a Managing Director at the fashion company The Style; teased by his flat-mate with the name ‘Prince of Pig Trotters’, he declared financial independence from his family who run a famous Jokbal restaurant, making him heir to a million dollar business. After his encounter with So-Young, he enters a financial crisis when having to repay the damage costs they both caused to a club; it isn’t long before he finds out that she has been hired within the same company, and so goes about hassling her and spending her money to ensure she pays back her share of the debt since she claims she cannot afford it. It isn’t long before he falls for her kind heart and innocent nature, and their encounters becoming more and more frequent. Their relationship is difficult from the start, and it only becomes more difficult the harder he falls for her with the belief that she is 25 years old and not 7 years older than him…
Kang Yun-Seo (Kim Min-Seo) is the main antagonist of the story; she is the daughter of Managing Director Hyun Ji-Sook, taking after her in both looks and devious ways. She arrives at the company after So-Young but immediately asserts her authority as she takes the place of Team Leader for So-Young’s design group. Despite being new, she already has so many connections within the company; being the daughter of the Head Managing Director, she is also the ‘girlfriend’ to the President of the company, as well as being Choi Jin-Wook’s old school friend before she left for America. She has already been established as a famous designer with an attitude to do whatever it takes to get what she wants; it isn’t long before she notices the people close to her warming to So-Young, causing her to become jealous and therefore holding a grudge against So-Young who just happens to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Yun-Seo quickly become aware that there is something suspicious concerning So-Young, and it isn’t long before she pieces everything together and discovers So-Young’s secret; Yun-Seo decides to use this to her advantage in order to rid the company of So-Young and to once again become the top designer…
President Ji Seung-Il (Ryu Jin) is the president of the company and ‘boyfriend’ of Yun-Seo; he is one of the few people that sees So-Young’s talent and supports her throughout. After So-Young meets his daughter, Ji Hyun-Yi (Ahn Seo-Hyun), the two instantly click and it becomes obvious to Seung-Il that So-Young is a brilliant mother figure for his daughter; Hyun-Yi also adores So-Young, creating something else that Yun-Seo can’t compete with. When Seung-Il discovers that Yun-Seo lied to him regarding So-Young he forgives her, however he can’t forgive her for a completely unrelated incident that happens between herself and Hyun-Yi. He realises that Yun-Seo is not the mother figure that Hyun-Yi needs and finds himself also falling for So-Young, one more thing Yun-Seo can add to her list of things to despise So-Young for. Seung-Il’s new goal is to make So-Young see him not only as the President or Hyun-Yi’s father, but as a man she can love…
Director Baek (Kim Mi-Kyung – that’s right, she’s in Faith too and I was so happy to see her!) is part of the Resource Department; she is the Teacher to Ji Seung-Il and So-Young, and one of the main reasons why Seung-Il supports So-Young. Director Baek is under constant attack from MD Hyun Ji-Sook who is desperate to remove her from the company, and often uses So-Young’s mishaps as a reason to fight her.
Ji Joo-Hee (Hyun Young) is Ji Seung-Il’s younger sister, Hyun-Yi’s aunt and old classmate of So-Young (also being aged 34); when So-Young takes the ruined jacket back to its rightful owner, she is shocked when it is Joo-Hee whom she has not seen or spoken to for many years. Joo-Hee is a pure-hearted character who is overly-trusting of everyone, and extremely nice and supportive; when things get too much for So-Young, she confesses to Joo-Hee about her lie and Joo-Hee agrees to protect her secret.
Manager Jang Ki-Hong (Hong Rok-Gi) is Choi Jin-Wook’s close friend and room-mate; he isn’t the most supportive friend and hates being out of his comfort zone. In times where changes that occur might affect him, he tries his best to prevent them from happening; he’s a fickle character, but most of the time he tries to keep things the way they are and yet at times is a hypocrite. He’s a rather selfish person who only thinks about how things will affect him (and occassionally others), that is until he has his eye on a special lady friend…
Lee So-Jin (Oh Yeon-Seo) is So-Young’s sister who has a bad reputation for spending money and being a home-wrecker; she is spoilt by her mother and considered the favourite by So-Young. She causes a lot of trouble for So-Young to begin with but does come through for her sister in the end. Jung Ok (Kim Hye-Ok) is So-Young’s mother who treats So-Young rather harshly and shows affection only to her younger sister; she realises after an argument with So-Young that she has been treating both of her daughter’s unfairly and after this begins to truly support her daughter’s.
This drama has a large cast list just like Faith does, and each person does play a decent role in the story; there are so many more, but these are the characters to recognise. I really adored this drama, it made me laugh so much that I was rewinding bits just to see it again!! I enjoyed all of the characters, so many that you dislike at the beginning but are rooting for by the end; some people really come through as a character, and you can’t help but feel happy that they become good and things work out for them. Lee So-Young does have to face many difficult circumstances that threaten to expose her at any given time, but they aren’t unrealistic like some of the situations that occur in BOF; I feel that the issues and attitudes that appear in this drama are very realistic, as having watched many fashion shows (America’s Next Top Model being one), people within this industry are like this!!
I have to admit that out of all of the ‘bad girls’ I have seen from the K-Dramas I have watched so far, Kang Yun-Seo has to be the worst!! And what is it with the female antagonists in K-Dramas all having short hair??
Featuring Ha Jae-Kyung from Boys Over Flowers (although she wasn’t really an antagonist but she did prevent our story lovers from being together for a while), Kim In-Hee from Personal Taste, Kang Yun-Seo from Baby-Faced Beauty and also a picture of Hyun Ji-Sook (the mother of Kang Yun-Seo) – don’t they look so alike!!??
I think this drama rates as below:
- Boys Over Flowers
- Baby-Faced Beauty
- Flower Boy Ramen Shop
- Personal Taste
It’s 2nd in my list it was that good!! Seriously I urge you to watch it; I really enjoyed Choi Daniel’s acting, he made me laugh so much and he’s so cute! Also try not to hate Kim Min-Seo too much, she played her role as Kang Yun-Seo incredibly well and I’m sure she’ lovely in real life; even if she does have you shouting and cursing at the screen… P.s I love the Jaws-like music that comes on whenever she gets angry!!
It seems like they all got on really well backstage, no hard feelings huh?? Also, who else thinks that Jang Na-Ra really does have a milky baby face? Another person who I think has a baby face is BOF’s Ku Hye-Sun!!