Episode 4 of True Beauty begins with a flashback as a boy called Se-Yeon commits suicide in the wake of overwhelming pressure from the media. While the details are hazy, one thing’s for certain – he was Seo-Joon’s friend and he’ s devastated by this news.
Back in the present, Seo-Joon’s comment to Soo-Ho about killing a friend makes more sense as it seems Soo-Ho was party responsible for this in some way. Determined to upstage Soo-Ho, he sits with Ju-Kyung but the two come to blows and eventually trade punches. That is, until the teachers get involved and break this up. Despite Soo-Ho being the catalyst for all this, it’s Seo-Joon who takes the brunt of punishment.
On the back of this makeshift triangle, Ju-Kyung is the talk of the school and told to choose one of the “Gods.” Ju-Kyung is suitably standoffish though and refuses to choose one of them.
When Soo-Ho shows up, things are immediately tense until Seo-Joon’s gang demand he step outside and explain his actions. Soo-Ho more than holds his own though and following a series of calamitous oral mistakes from Man-Sik, Seo-Joon shows up and diffuses the situation before things turn nasty.
Alone, Soo-Ho admits that Se-Yeon tried to find him before he passed away. Something happened between them, seemingly with Soo-Ho not believing him as we see flashes of Seo-Joon holding the scruff of his neck and demanding he bring Se-Yeon back to life.
Further flashbacks reveal that Ju-Kyung came to him in the Comic store while he was crying as a child and helped cheer him up. Interestingly, this mirrors the present too, as Soo-Ho sits contemplating what to do while Ju-Kyung tries to do the same. After, she calls him her guardian angel given he’s guarding her bare face.
As the two start to grow closer together, the Prince Comics owner suddenly shows his face and tells the pair they need to stop looking at adult comics. Flustered, Soo-Ho quickly tells Ju-Kyung she needs to go home and pushes her out the door.
The next day at school Ju-Kyung runs into trouble up at the whiteboard but Soo-Ho is no help to her conundrum as she runs into trouble. With Ju-Kyung let off the hook, Seo-Joon instead takes to the front of class and takes over the equation.
On the way home, Ju-Kyung rides the bus as Soo-Ho takes his place next to her. They talk about math until a boy called Woo-Hyeon messages and asks her out on a date. Tellingly, Soo-Ho is uncomfortable while she messages him. This is only made worse when another boy jumps on the bus and sits in the middle of them both.
At the hospital, Seo-Joon heads in to see her Mother. Together, they arrive at the beauty salon where Ju-kyung happens to be without makeup. She quickly covers her face but Seo-Joon is quick to retort “daebak” (awesome) upon snapping pictures of her wearing a face mask.
After saying goodbye to Seo-Joon, Ju-Kyung prepares for her date and tries to find a suitable outfit to wear. Unfortunately, this comes in the form of her sister’s new clothes that still have the tag on them.
After Soo-Ho’s math exam at school, Ju-Kyung heads out to her date at the movies. Only, she doesn’t realize that So-Ho happens to be perched in the seats above. He watches as he make a move on her and leans in to kiss Ju-Kyung. Overcome with jealously, Soo-Ho quickly bolts forward and breaks this up.
Remember how we’ve been saying this show plays on ideas in Extraordinary You? Well, both Lee Jae-Wok and Kim Hye-Yoon make a cameo appearance here and happen to be the duo kissing in the cinema. There’s even the familiar page flip sound too. For those completely lost here, those two actors were the main cast in a similarly toned Korean drama called Extraordinary You. The Director is paying homage to that given it’s the previous drama he worked on.
After the movie, Soo-Ho watches the pair say goodbye to one another as he hides inside a banner. Realizing what he’s doing, he quickly composes himself but sees that this Woo-Hyeon character actually has a girlfriend. He even messages Ju-Kyung and tells her he misses her. Ugh what a pig.
At home, Ju-Kyung’s Mother tries to match Ju-Kyung up with Seo-Joon, calling him a good kid. Her woes are only made worse when she’s rejected outright by him, messaging and revealing that he has a girlfriend.
The next day at school, Ju-Kyung tries to get her own back on Seo-Joon, quickly snapping pictures of him riding in on his motorcycle. Now they both have incriminating evidence against one another.
As we soon see, Soo-Ho was the reason for Woo-Hyeon’s sudden change in behavior, threatening him over Ju-Kyung and forcing him to admit the truth. It seems that earlier line about a guardian angel rings true!
Believing Seo-Joon is showing off her picture to the school, Ju-Kyung snatches up his motorcycle keys and races off outside. As she does, Seo-Joon grabs her arm just as Soo-Ho arrives and sparks the flames of this love triangle.
After study class, the kids head to karaoke where a heavenly voice floats from one of the rooms. That room, as it turns out, holds Seo-Joon inside! Ju-Kyung doesn’t know though and eventually receives a lift back to the comic store after evading a gang of thugs outside with Seo-Joon.
At the Comic store, Soo-Ho happens to be there waiting. Hee-Kyung stumbles up drunk though, prompting both boys to take her home. Unfortunately, she throws up on the way all over Soo-Ho’s jacket and arm. He’s absolutely mortified too, as Seo-Joon can only cover his face and turn away, retching.
With Ju-Kyung gone, Soo-Ho admits that he likes Ju-Kyung, prompting Seo-Joon to sneer and decide he should like her too.
The next day at school Ju-Kyung shows up looking as radiant as ever as Seo-Joon makes his move and decides to try and sweet talk Ju-Kyung into submission. However, Soo-Ho steps up when he walks away and grabs Ju-Kyung’s wrist, telling her not to go.
The Episode Review
True Beauty returns this week for a wonderful episode of comedy, romance and drama. As a big fan of Extraordinary You (it was one of our top 40 TV shows last year), the cameos from both Lee Jae-Wook and Kim Hye-Yoon were very much welcome and play back into the meta feel of this webtoon.
In fact, tonally True Beauty has been bang on the money with an episode that steers away from Soo-Ho and focuses more on Seo-Joon instead. This bad boy persona dissolves as we see a much softer core to him, helping to balance out Soo-Ho somewhat.
The ending certainly leaves the door wide open too. True Beauty is shaping up to be one of the must-watch dramas going into 2021!