What do you get when a sweet apprentice nun joins a rock band disguised as her twin brother?… The wonderful Kdrama, You’re Beautiful. You’re probably thinking, “Oh, no. Not another ‘girl tries to pass herself off as a boy’ Kdrama.” But this one’s different in that every once in awhile the make-up and wardrobe people actually do make Park Shin-Hye look, from a distance, a little like a guy – a “flower boy”, but male none the less.
Because Ko Mi-Nam, the newest member of the band A.N.JELL, is in the States under medical care, his twin sister, Ko Mi-Nyeo, is asked to pose as Mi-Nam just to sign the contract. But things get complicated when she ends up having to do a lot more than that. At first only A.N.JELL’s manager and wardrobe lady know Mi-Nyeo’s secret but, ever so slowly, more people begin to find out what’s going on. Will they blow the whistle on her masquerade or look the other way? And, to make matters even more difficult, one by one each band member begins to fall for Mi-Nyeo.
All of the characters are personable, likable, and easy to think of as friends even though their personalities vary quite a bit. There’s a naïve one, an egotistical one, a kind-hearted one, and a funny one.
Mi-Nyeo (known to almost everyone as Min-Nam) is a gentle girl who grew up in a convent orphanage with her twin brother. She longs to find the mother she never knew and wants to help her brother achieve his dream of becoming a rock star. Out of frustration, Tae-Kyeong refers to her as “Piggy Bunny” but the term quickly turns to one of endearment.
Hwang Tae-Kyeong is A.N.JELL’s leader. He’s a distant, cold man but when we find out the reason for his hard shell we just can’t help but love him. He’s a talented musician, singer, and composer with a very high opinion of himself. And although he is serious 98% of the time, when he does smile it melts your heart. (When he’s earnestly thinking something over he wiggles his lips back and forth. So cute!)
Kang Shin-Woo is a talented guitarist and singer with the band. He’s soft-spoken, sensitive, kind, handsome, and a true romantic at heart. He definitely understands what love is and always thinks of others.
Jeremy is A.N.JELL’s drummer. Even though he’s definitely the kid of the bunch, he is a happy and emotionally well-adjusted young man. He’s just the kind of guy you want as your best friend.
All of the performers in A.N.JELL are professional musicians- Keun-Suk is a solo artist (singer) whose first solo release sold over 119,000 copies in its first week. Yong-Hwa is a composer and the leader, rhythm guitarist, and lead vocalist in the rock band CNBlue. (Give CNBlue a try. I love them!) Lee Hong-Gi is the lead vocalist in the pop/rock band F.T. Island. Park Shin-Hye has sung on quite a few single releases, mostly songs from the OST of the dramas and movies she’s been in. All four of these stars performed together as the fictitious idol group “A.N.JELL” just to get shots of them in concert for You’re Beautiful. You can watch A.N.JELL’s fake real-life concert on YouTube. It’s only 35 minutes long and, after watching the drama first, it’s a real treat. With professional musicians portraying professional musicians you can probably imagine how awesome the soundtrack to You’re Beautiful is. If you listen to some of the songs on YouTube I’m sure they’d make you want to see the show. At least check out My Heart’s Cursing. It’s wonderful.
There are several nice scenery shots, here and there, throughout the show. There’s one at the ocean, and quite a few pretty outdoor places for A.N.JELL’s photo shoots. They even have one IN a swimming pool. It’s a nice change from so many Kdramas that take their characters to ice rinks. Near the end of the show Tae-Kyeong and Mi-Nyeo (Mi-Nam) meet at an aquarium and talk in front of a HUGE tank of fish. The blue water and all the different kinds of fish are a beautiful backdrop for a stand-still talking scene. Great idea, Mr. Director, Sir.
This drama is good enough to have once been on my top 20 favorite Kdramas list, yet there was one big thing I didn’t like – the way Park Shin-Hye’s character, Ko Mi-Nam, spoke and her/his childish manor- isms. It got to be really irritating. She did this pouty mumble and her walk was more like a running shuffle. Yikes! There’s a difference in acting like a sheltered apprentice nun and acting like a silly 8 year old. I think the director really goofed there. However, Hwang Tae-Kyeong was so darling, I would have sat through anything to see him, including a mumbling, shuffling nun.
A few interesting side notes – Jang Keun-Suk, Park Shin-Hye, Jung Yong-Hwa, and Lee Jong-Gi each won a New Star Award at the 2009 SBS Drama Awards for their rolls in You’re Beautiful. And, just so you know, you can actually own a piggy bunny of your own. I found it online. Also, Mi-Nyeo’s star necklace can be purchased online as well. Personally, I like the Polaris one from Winter Sonata better.
So, here’s my suggestion – set aside a weekend for a You’re Beautiful marathon. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll tap your toes and hum, and then you’ll go right to eBay and search for a Piggy Bunny.
The character Hwang Tae-Kyeong
Mi-Nam’s childish, pouty mumble and silly shuffle run/walk