Official Synopsis: 'Shut Up Flower Boy Band' is centered around a high school band known as "Eye Candy", whose members are comprised of good looking delinquents who face varying personal problems. The drama depicts their friendships, love, and youthful passion — all tied together by the unifying force, music.
Recap of Ep. 15: With Eye Candy officially disbanded, the individual boys try to pave their own future, only to meet a hopeless dead end. Ha Jin (Yoo Min Kyu) participates in acting training sessions, but does not have the heart to succeed, and calls Kyung Jong (Kim Min Suk), who is imprisoned by his mother in her fish store. Meanwhile, Do Il (Lee Hyun Jae) locks up his pool room, while Hyun Soo (INFINITE's L) continues recording for his solo album. Ji Hyuk (Sung Joon) is cut off from his friends, as he wanders aimlessly to Byung Hee's memorial vault.
Ha Jin, still furious that Hyun Soo had left for his solo career, engages in a fist fight with him, which Do Il breaks up as he finally reveals the truth of Ji Hyuk's sacrifice for Hyun Soo and how he had sent Hyun Soo off for his solo career. Kyung Jong finally escapes his mother's grip over him, and although the boys reunite sans Hyun Soo, Ji Hyuk is still downtrodden despite being acknowledged for his heroic sacrifice. Later, Hae Ri, HR's CEO, reveals the truth to Hyun Soo that Ji Hyuk had made a deal with her to allow Hyun Soo his solo career.
Angrily confronting Ji Hyuk about the sacrifice, Hyun Soo asks how he could sacrifice the band this way. Ji Hyuk counters back furiously, relieving all his pent up frustrations with how the boys of Eye Candy, the media, and society had opposed his relationship with Su Ah (Jo Bo Ah), as well as how the boys had easily abandoned him, leaving him all alone while the rest of the band members had family members to go back to.
After his diatribe, a disheartened Ji Hyuk meets Rock Kim, who gives him a 'pep talk'. Opening the light to Ji Hyuk, Rock Kim relates himself to Ji Hyuk and the life he's led. He helps Ji Hyuk realize the sole thing Ji Hyuk can rely on is music, and questions Ji Hyuk's dreams, asking "What kind of music do you want to make?".
Meanwhile, Eye Candy's manager break good news for the boys: a Japanese agency is interested in establishing the idol career for Eye Candy. Although the boys are elated, there is a hitch to the agreement. Hyun Soo must give up his solo career to join Eye Candy again. The boys shout down the offer, but Hyun Soo stands up defiantly and says it's not up to them to decide.
Recap of Ep. 16: Hyun Soo agrees to think about giving up his solo career to join the boys in their promotion for Eye Candy. As he remembers Ji Hyuk's heartfelt words to not endure everything alone, he rushes over to Ji Hyuk's home, and the two friends sit together, thinking about their friendship.
Hyun Soo confesses he's always been jealous of how Ji Hyuk left him for Byung Hee, to which Ji Hyuk replies that Hyun Soo had done the same when Da Som, Hyun Soo's sister, was born. The two boys divulge all their painful secrets of their families and friendship together, culminating in a more enjoyable ramyun snack session, ultimately healing their strong friendship together.
Although their practice room is demolished, the boys are joyful over the offer of their Japanese contract, as Hyun Soo cuts off his solo career with HR Entertainment. Upon hearing about the concept of their band, which would capitalize upon their handsome looks, and the similar idol life they would have to pursue, the boys are left pondering over the deal.
Meanwhile, Ji Hyuk intervenes in Su Ah's plan to leave for China and confesses to her. Su Ah replies by moving back into her rooftop room, becoming neighbors again with Ji Hyuk. The boys of Eye Candy meet up again and Ji Hyuk announces that they should begin paving their own individual dreams and paths, much to the boys' shock. After thinking about all the tribulations and joy they had in the past as Eye Candy, the boys agree to find their own dreams, cheering, "Shut up and run!".
Ji Hyuk drops out of school and begins to find his own music style with Rock Kim in his club, writing the title song for Hyun Soo's solo album. Ha Jin begins to pursue his acting career, Kyung Jong plans out his business and saves money, while Do Il finds he enjoys studying and decides to go to college. Despite their separate futures and dreams, the boys join together and perform "Jaywalking" with the passion for their friendship and love for music.
[ Note : This post reflects the opinions of the author, not necessarily those of allkpop ]
Someone want to find me friends like these boys? No, someone needs to find me a heartwarming, agonizing, poignant, and energetic drama like this because there is an empty void the boys of Eye Candy left with the finale episode. Beautifully painting the boys, who are searching for their identity, dreams, on the harsh background of reality, 'Shut Up Flower Boy Band' holds the power of emotionally moving viewers, painting a cracked self-reflection of society, in addition to inspiring viewers to find dreams of their own.
I loved the unique step the boys of Eye Candy took with their friendship. Most Korean dramas love the fairy-tale endings and would have presented the last episode as the boys reuniting as Eye Candy, gaining world fame, and being friends and best buddies as they undertake the dream of music. Although the writers capitalized on the passion the boys poured into music, the authentic focal point of the drama is the friendship. Rather than music being the binding force of their friendship, it is only a small portion, as music was just a hobby for the boys to enjoy their time together. While in the beginning of the drama, Byung Hee, music, goals to win the competition, and becoming the music kings, had control over their friendship, the boys learned to free themselves from the restrictions and boundaries to create their friendship on their own grounds.
Which brings me to the fact that I loved how the title meshed into the drama so perfectly. Although the boys' band name is Eye Candy, the band concept that agencies and media are placing on them as the 'flower boys', the pretty, well-behaved boys society adores, is rejected by the boys as they shout rebelliously, 'Shut Up'. It was also symbolized when the boys reject the offer made by the Japanese agency. We see this kind of energetic rebellion, the courage as the boys struggle against the stuck-up rich adults, the harping media against Su Ah, and all these extraneous forces. When the boys skip school to visit Byung Hee, it just exudes the energy of youth, youth who are willing to step over the lines society places upon us. It's so refreshing to see these boys find their identity without anyone paving the path for them and see them still carry that youthful spunk that we lose later in our lives.
The writing does so well on multiple levels, with the flow of the plot, the character development, the moving dialogue, and the figurative undercurrent. Each major plot movement or even little details hold significance. The destruction of the basement room symbolizing the end of their career as the idols, as the boys only began practicing there to win the band competition. The arc of Eye Candy, as idols, not only presented the first obstacle to the boys' friendship but showed their genuine resistance to society.
While I hoped for some more character development on Su Ah and Seung Hoon (Jung Eui Chul), whom I wished to see make amends with his friends and face the same tribulations the main characters did, I actually loved how the lovelines and the family background of Ji Hyuk was left open. Rather than trying to tie everything up in the last two episodes, they left it unresolved, problems for another day to solve. Because that's what reality truly is.
All in all, this was one of the most heartfelt, youthful drama that I could truly connect to. I hope the main cast shoots to stardom and hope to see them all in upcoming dramas, especially Sung Joon.
What are your final thoughts?
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