2020 is wrapping up with an amazing season of K-Dramas and with one host of amazing dramas coming to an end, December has come along with another wonderful set. 'True Beauty' premiered on December 9, 2020, to incredible ratings in South Korea. According to Nielsen Korea, the first episode of the drama peaked at 3.8% nationwide and at 4.3% in Seoul, setting up a solid base for the episodes to come.
The first episode wraps up on a perfect note, having established the female protagonist's background and the introduction to the male protagonist. Lee Su Ho, played by ASTRO's Cha Eun Woo, is a tsundere type right from a manhwa, which sounds about right considering the fact that this is an adaptation of the webtoon of the same name!
No one other than Eunwoo would have been able to play Su Ho's character with such finesse. There's also the right amount of mysterious air to him, which adds to the curiosity regarding his story. A stark contrast has also been clearly displayed regarding how society treats people differently according to appearance. I hope this will be subverted in the course of the drama.
The premiere of 'True Beauty' sees a clever cameo by Lee Tae Ri as Wang Hyun Bin, Ju Gyeong's high school crush. 'True Beauty' is directed by Kim Sang Hyeop, the director of 'Extraordinary You.' 'Extraordinary You' had a running motif of the author of a story or a comic redrawing the characters they love most in all their different works. In keeping with the theme, director Kim Sang Hyeop has once more, brought in Lee Tae Ri as a school cafeteria chef in 'True Beauty,' this time with a completely different look. This cameo was definitely a neat callback that fans of the drama will be sure to appreciate.
Finally, Im Ju Gyeong, played artfully by Moon Ga Young, has a slow but steady start into learning about self-worth, and the most important part here is the fact that the change doesn't happen overnight. It is clear that she has a long way to go in order to truly be comfortable in her own skin, but the path she's taking is not too bad either. This drama's approach towards makeup will hopefully end the stigma towards makeup as something simply corrective and not art. Im Ju Gyeong is a fan of all things horror, but she is afraid that it might drive people away, so she keeps her taste under wraps. At this point in the drama, Ju Gyeong is hiding her true self behind makeup, but soon, she will be able to embrace herself with love greater than ever before. Her true transformation, not just from what society calls "ugly" to a "goddess" but from an insecure girl to a woman who loves herself first and foremost, is the drama's true plot. The love triangle is just a bonus, and nobody's complaining. Su Ho clearly has a lot he's hiding behind that tough exterior and in true first lead fashion, both Su Ho and Ju Gyeong are undoubtedly destined to bring each other out of their shells. Their fateful first encounter at a rooftop when Ju Gyeong is contemplating a terrible step and Su Ho being able to prevent the same, clearly stirs something up inside him which will change his life and quite possibly hers too.
With a host of main characters yet to be introduced and the inevitable twists and turns that await us, 'True Beauty' will surely turn out to be one of the 'must-watch' dramas of this year. We can't wait to see how this wonderful new story pans out.