Wow, this episode was wonderful. Everything about it was great. Whereas before the drama might have struggled a bit in being consistent and stable, episode 8 was the total opposite. Everything makes sense and all our characters get their own few moments to shine, but it’s especially Dae-hwi who stands out the most.
School 2017 episode 8: After the Lie
Episode 8 begins where we left off in the last episode. Tae-woon visits the teacher’s office room to inform Teacher Koo that he was the person who broke into the teacher’s office room the other night. When asked why, he reveals that it was because he thought he had saw X enter the room, but failed to see his face before X ran away. Teacher Koo grows confused, not knowing whether to believe Tae-woon or Eunho’s side of the story but it doesn’t matter. Sooner or later he’ll find out what actually happened that night. Tae-woon will get another punishment for having broken into the teacher’s office room. They leave it at that.
Teacher Shim grows disappointed at Officer Soo-ji for having revealed everything to Teacher Koo. He trusted her to not say anything to anyone about what he heard the night of the accident. Officer Soo-ji defends her by saying that a job is a job in the end and it’s not their responsibility to protect or cover for the students. Instead, they should be teaching the students a lesson by reporting their wrongdoings and punishing them for their misbehavior. But Teacher Shim doesn’t agree and he advocates for the students. Officer Soo-ji leaves the room in anger and disappointment.
Back in the secret hideaway spot, Eunho suggests that they let Dae-hwi in on what happened the night of the incident, but Tae-woon isn’t so opened to this idea. Eunho then accuses Tae-woon of confessing so as to help cover up for Dae-hwi who was X that night, but Tae-woon disagrees. He didn’t do it to save Dae-hwi. He walks out and slams the door behind him.
Dae-hwi takes a small break at studying to look over his student records, specifically at the merit-demerit section. Dissatisfied, he crumbles up his student records and sigh in stress.
Tae-woon walks to his desk and sits down for another day of class. But today is different as he notices a note on his desk given to him by Eunho. It’s a drawing of X accompanied by a little apology. Of course our Tae-woon gets all giddy and smiley and he’s no longer the angry upset person he was anymore (ohhh the things that love does to youuu).
Tae-woon and Eunho join each other for a bottle of lemonade outside. While Tae-woon dreads being punished for the incident, Eunho worries about Dae-hwi. Will he be okay? What will happen to him? Tae-woon gets jealous and tells Eunho to stop worrying about Dae-hwi. It’s not like he’s the one getting punished.
An announcement about Tae-woon and Eunho’s punishment is displayed at school. Upon seeing the flyer, Sarang grows sad at not knowing what’s even happening with her best friend anymore. Meanwhile, Tae-woon and Eunho also take their chance to glance at the flyer.
Back outside, Eunho agonizes over her student records. If she receives anymore demerit points then she really won’t be able to go to college. Tae-woon argues that they should just report the truth to the teachers and tell them about how it was Dae-hwi who was X the night of the incident. But Eunho refuses to.
Tae-woon walks away and coincidentally meets Dae-hwi and Hee-chan together on campus. Once Hee-chan leaves the two alone, Tae-woon threatens Dae-hwi to report himself. If he also cares about Eunho – who’s been stressing out over this incident – he’ll go in and report what actually happened that night. Before walking away Dae-hwi reassures Tae-woon that he will tell the truth to the teachers. He’s not afraid at all.
Later on that day, Nam-joo tries to cheer her boyfriend up who she notices is obviously stressed out over the situation.
That night, Dae-hwi searches for his money that he recalled was at his desk. But he can’t seem to find it no matter where he searches. It’s not until his mother enters the room that she notifies him that she had used some of his money for an emergency. Dae-hwi breaks down in front of his mother. No matter how hard he works it’ll never be enough.
Dae-hwi’s ready to turn himself in. He stands nervously in front of the teacher’s office room, but Teacher Shim interrupts him and asks for some of his time. Together they enter the room and Teacher Shim updates Dae-hwi on a scholarship that he could possibly earn. All Dae-hwi will have to do is fill out the application. Before leaving, Teacher Shim checks up on Dae-hwi, noticing his recent odd behavior but Dae-hwi pretends to be fine and reiterates that he really hopes he’ll make it into Seoyul University. He also notices a document opened on Teacher Shim’s computer outlining Tae-woon and Eunho’s punishment agenda.
Tae-woon gets ready to head outside, but is stopped by his father. His father slaps him in the face and warns him to stop causing trouble. Whether it’s because of Eunho or whatever reason, he should stop. No matter what he does, Tae-woon’s father will always find a way to save and protect Tae-woon so he should stop.
Tae-woon heads to the rooftop of the building that he always visits. He recalls memories of when he, Joongi-gi, and Dae-hwi used to hang out on the same exact rooftop. A slight smile appears on his face upon remembering this memory, but the smile fades once he wakes back up to reality. He turns around only to find Dae-hwi standing across from him (OMG WHAT IS HE DOING THERE??!). The awkward silence is broken when Dae-hwi voices for Tae-woon – who almost slips off the edge of the rooftop – to becareful (my fragile hearttt ;___;). Tae-woon turns around to face Dae-hwi again and tells him that what he is doing is more dangerous. Cheating and lying is what is dangerous, but Dae-hwi doesn’t care. He’s been able to get to his position from doing those things and he doesn’t plan on stopping anytime soon. Dae-hwi walks away in tears.
But the guilt is too much for Dae-hwi. Especially after being asked by Tae-woon how Joong-gi would feel about all of this, Dae-hwi decides that he’s had enough. He marches into the teacher’s office room the next morning and confesses to Teacher Koo the truth. He was the one who broke into the teacher’s office room to steal the answers to the math competition.
Dae-hwi is interrogated by the VP, Teacher Koo, Teacher Jang, Teacher Shim, and Officer Soo-ji. The principal – who’s on administrative leave – is also present, but is of no importance. Just when the Vice Principal is about to announce Dae-hwi’s punishment, Dae-hwi makes a request: cancel Tae-woon and Eunho’s disciplinary action. They didn’t do anything wrong because they weren’t the ones who broke into the teacher’s office.
Eunho (and Tae-woon) wait outside of the hall where Dae-hwi’s being interrogated. She asks him on how the interrogation went and wonders whether Dae-hwi knows whether or not she and Tae-woon lied in order to protect him.
News about Dae-hwi’s punishment spreads throughout the school. He is punished to 7 days of chores (again).
Teacher Shim and Officer Soo-ji go for a walk on campus. She checks up on the “lie” that he had told her on the day of the incident.. ya know the one about him confessing to her that he likes her. But Teacher Shim grows nervous and says that it might not actually be a lie anymore. Awww *squeals*.
Nam-joo checks up on her boyfriend and asks for details. What happened to him? Did he really break into the teacher’s office room? Dae-hwi tells Nam-joo the truth. Yes, he did break into the teacher’s office to obtain the answers to the math competition because he was too stressed out from just studying and needed to do whatever he could to place. Dae-hwi shares that this caused him a lot of stress but he had to do what he had to do.
Eunho can worry a little less now that Dae-hwi admitted to his wrongdoing. She’s excited over the increase of comments on her webtoon series, but notices that they’re all similar to one another: they’re short and straight-forward. Tae-woon takes notes of the type of comments Eunho wants. Hahaha.
The next day at school, Tae-woon asks his friend for some advice on how to write nice, long, and witty comments. His friend gives him some suggestions, but contrary to what he claimed, his friend’s ideas are not so long or witty. Hahaha. This is so funny. I love their friendship.
Sarang is walking home from school but is accompanied by Kyung-woo who joins her. She tries to be as discreet as possible about her dissatisfaction with how things are going with Eunho, but Kyung-woo figures it out. He recommends that Sarang talk to Eunho about her honest thoughts and feelings and how much she misses her best friend. They then go eat noodles together at a convenience store (ooh, new possible couple?).
Bit-na’s mother visits the school along with lawyers to request for a disciplinary hearing. She disapproves of how her daughter was forced to write an apology when she wasn’t the one who had started the fight with Bo-ra. Furthermore she’s worried that this might appear on her daughter’s student evaluation which will affect her daughter’s chances of getting into college. The staff stress out over the situation.
Teacher Shim tries to talk Bo-ra one more time into revealing details about the fight and reassures her that he’ll protect her. But Bo-ra doesn’t reveal anything partly due to trust issues she had with former teacher Teacher Jang who had also promised to protect Bo-ra the year before. She walks out of the room apologizing.
Bo-ra is warned by the 3 bullies to be careful during the hearing. They warn her not to mention their names or else she’ll get into more trouble.
During the disciplinary hearing, Bo-ra admits to being the one to start the fight with Bit-na. Teacher Shim looks at her in disbelief knowing fully well that Bo-ra is lying, but everyone else in the room doesn’t speculate. The hearing comes to a close. Bo-ra is subject to a week of suspension.
Dae-hwi fixes Eunho’s bike and as a token of appreciation for each other, they’ll go out and get some Korean shaved ice together. Tae-woon walks in on the two talking to each other and grows jealous (omg his jealous face is the absolute cutest and funniest). He tells her to not get patbingsoo with Dae-hwi before walking away in jealousy. He recalls all the moments he’s seen her with Dae-hwi as well as the time when she tied her hair up and warns himself to snap out of it. “Snap out of it Tae-woon, snap out of it!” Hahaha.
Later on that day in class after school has ended, Tae-woon and Eunho are sitting in their classroom doing their own things. Eunho gets ready to leave the classroom when Tae-woon stops her and pulls her in towards him. He takes a good look at her face before letting her go and walking out the classroom (omg what was that for Tae-woon??).
Teacher Shim nervously rehearses how he’s going to ask Officer Soo-ji on a movie date. But before he can even offer the idea, Teacher Jung swoops in from out of no where and asks Officer Soo-ji out on a movie date first
(someone got cockblocked). HAHAHA. Omg this is hilarious. On another day, Teacher Shim manages to gather a group of students for a hang-out. He invites Officer Soo-ji and together they head out to Subway to eat. Teacher Jung invites himself and also joins them at the restaurant. Lolol.
After eating, they all separate to go home. Dae-hwi, Nam-joo, Tae-woon, and Eunho are all walking together in the same direction when they notice a man yelling at an employee to do his job properly. They stop to watch this, but Eunho notices something different about the man getting yelled at. It’s her father! Tae-woon manages to get the boss to leave while Eunho checks up on her father.
Turns out that Dad had been coming home late every night not because of drinking but because he had been working. He’s been working late into the night so he can have extra money to pay for Eunho’s preparatory classes. Dad and Eunho share some smiles and tears of joy with each other as she expresses her gratitude for her dad. Aww, this makes my heart warm.
Dae-hwi can’t help but gush about Eunho to Nam-joo as he walks her home. He admires the way Eunho stood up for her father. It was really cool and nice of her to do something like that. It’s even cooler that she wasn’t embarrassed by her father – something totally different from how he used to feel about his mother growing up. Dae-hwi drops Nam-joo off in a neighborhood that he assumes she’s living in and notices how nice it looks, but it’s not until he disappears that Nam-joo takes the actual route to get home.
Teacher Shim nervously paces back and forth with two cans of soda in his hand. He watches Officer Soo-ji walking not too far away and prepares himself to ask her to join him for a drink. But along the way he comes across Tae-woon and ends up giving him the other can of soda. Together they sit down and share feelings and thoughts of what it’s like to have a crush on someone, saying such things like “wanting to see them even if it’s just briefly” or “wanting to share a can of soda together.” Teacher Koo interrupts them by adding in his own comments as well. Haha.
Tae-woon sure does loving teasing Eunho. She delivers chicken to his house for about maybe 10 times because he’s in love with her and wants to use any chance he can get to see her, even if that means making her bike to his house 10 times to deliver chicken that he won’t eat. While he’s having a fun time with the teasing, Eunho grows frustrated and mad. Does he hate her? Is that why he’s doing this to her? Tae-woon flinches at the question of whether he hates her or not. Hahaha. Omg no Eunho, it’s the total opposite girl!
It’s been 200 days since Nam-joo and Dae-hwi has been dating. She waits at a coffee shop for him to celebrate, but he doesn’t show up. Devastated, she walks home only to find Dae-hwi waiting with some flowers and a gift in front of her house.
The two bursts in tears upon seeing each other. Dae-hwi is frustrated at how consistent Nam-joo has been in lying to him. He walks away without uttering another word and recalls all the memories the two made in their 200-day relationship. We also find out that Dae-hwi knows Nam-joo is not the daughter of the CEO of the taxi company her father works at like how she had claimed. They ignore each other when they see each other at school and don’t say a word to each other either.
In a voice over, we hear Eunho talking saying,
We all lie.. to protect something or to hide something. And we have to be responsible for the consequences of our lies.
Sometimes there’s even greater truth within their lies that they couldn’t realize in advance. That’s what in their lies sometimes.
The next day at school, Eunho and Tae-woon are walking together on campus. She wonders why X would lie after saving her. Tae-woon replies that it’s because he wasn’t aware of his feelings.. (feelings for who??). But before Tae-woon can continue on with what he was saying, it suddenly starts to rain.
Tae-woon and Eunho run to hide under a tree where Tae-woon covers her head with his backpack. She smiles at him upon his action, but he tells her to stop smiling. “Don’t smile,” he voices. “It makes my heart beat.” AHHHHHHHH. I’M TOTALLY NOT SCREAMING RIGHT NOW.
He slowly puts his backpack down and leans closer towards Eunho for a kiss. They stare at each other while the space between the two grow smaller and smaller.
NOOOOOOOO. Why would you stop and leave us there? WHYYYYY. YOU ARE SO CRUEL SCHOOL 2017. Now I have to wait another week to see if they actually kiss or not? *pouts*
I actually don’t think they’re going to kiss – yet. This would make for such a romantic kiss and is the ideal situation and environment for one, but I have to remind myself that they’re still on school grounds so they might not or if they do, they will most likely get caught and punished once again for their action. But I still do want a kiss between Tae-woon and Eunho even though I know they shouldn’t because everything leading up to this moment has been perfect. Even if they don’t necessarily kiss right now, Tae-woon did end up confessing to Eunho so maybe she might get the hint that contrary to what she thinks, Tae-woon likes her – not hate her. I predict that the next few episodes are gonna be of Eunho questioning Tae-woon’s confession and whether or not he was actually genuine with what he said or if he was just teasing her once again. The next few episodes shall be fun with Tae-woon and Eunho’s relationship and I can see a lot more squealing happening. My voice will be gone by the end this drama ends.
This episode was probably one of the better episodes, if not the best episode yet in my opinion. Everything in this episode was well-paced, logical, made sense, was not thrown at us from out of no where, and once again touched all the right spots in terms of angst and pain. This episode was depressing, but also had its moments of warmth and love which I think made it out to be a well balanced episode. We had angst and pain in almost every relationship starting from Tae-woon and Dae-hwi to Dae-hwi and Nam-joo to Teacher Shim and Bo-ra. But in between all of this were also really heart-warming scenes such as with Eunho and her father to Sarang and Kyung-woo or comedic moments of jealous Tae-woon with his crush Eunho. The best thing about this episode (and the last episode) was that it was able to weave everything together perfectly to summarize the one message that it had been emphasizing all along: everyone lies. Most of our characters – from Tae-woon to Eunho to Dae-hwi to Nam-joo and even Teacher Shim – all told lies, but did so because like Eunho said to protect someone or to hide something. Episode 8 did a wonderful job in tying everything together and wrapping everything up that by the end of this episode when Eunho was talking about lies, it made total sense because yes, everyone did lie and everyone faced the consequences for their decisions to lie.
We’re finally starting to get glimpses of progress for Dae-hwi and Tae-woon’s love/hate relationship for each other. It killed me when Dae-hwi expressed concern for Tae-woon who almost slipped off the edge of the rooftop because if anything that just demonstrates that he still cares for Tae-woon despite what he shows externally or despite all the arguments he has with Tae-woon. For him to just utter the simple and short words “it’s dangerous” was so bittersweet. You want him to make up with Tae-woon and you want both boys to go back to how they used to be and they’re taking small steps to get there, but at the same time they’re afraid to be the first ones to give in so they just pretend to hate each other. There’s so much potential to return to being friends again or at least on a good note with each other, but Dae-hwi nor Tae-woon know how to be the first ones to do that. They can only throw hate and cruel comments at each other because that’s what their mind says, but it’s obvious that their hearts convey otherwise.
Episode 8 has to be Dae-hwi’s episode. It was his turn to shine and it was his moment to be in the spotlight. This episode was heavily Dae-hwi focused and I’m glad that the drama finally decided to spend some more time on his character because he’s such an interesting, pitiful, and kind character and someone I want to know more about. He goes through a lot both at school and at home and is surrounded by toxicity where ever he goes. He works his hardest, but often times finds that his effort and hard work doesn’t get him anywhere which is why I sympathize for him when he breaks down or why I understand when he resorts to cheating – such as how he did when he broke into the teacher’s office room to steal the answers to the math competition. I’m glad that he turned himself in though. That despite being the #1 ranked student and having cheated and done something he should have never done, he knows better than to keep lying and cheating which other students at the school should also learn to do. Especially since he doesn’t have his parents to rely on or isn’t the wealthiest student at the school, he has to own up to his words and actions but it’s this honesty and integrity that makes him such a good and interesting person and episode 8 really highlighted these aspects about him. After watching this episode, I also have a lot more reasons to care for him now. Not that I didn’t before, but I felt like the drama was forcing us to care about him in the prior episodes by giving us small hints about his stressful and demanding life, but with this episode, seeing him turn himself in and then be honest with not only himself but Tae-woon, Teacher Koo, Teacher Shim, as well as Nam-joo, he’s someone that I’m fully rooting for now.
A part of me feels conflicted between the whole ‘we must punish the students to prepare them for the harsh reality of the world’ vs. ‘they’re already living in a corrupt society, we must protect them from the harsh world’ debate. I can understand both sides of the argument and I want to side with Teacher Shim on this one, but at the same time Teacher Koo and Officer Soo-ji do bring up good points about punishing the students to help them prepare for a much harsher and cruel world out there that the students just don’t know about yet. There’s a bit of naivety with Teacher Shim’s thoughts on wanting to protect and save the students from the harsh and cruel reality that is society because the students will eventually have to face the world after high school and college so the teachers and staff at the high school want to best prepare the students for this daunting task. But maybe it’s the approach that the school takes in doing this that I feel a bit iffy with. Getting the students to call one another out for merit points should not be the way to prepare students for the real world. Placing so much emphasis on ranks and merit points to the point where students fight one another and get punished is not the way to helping the students. The teachers themselves are also perpetuating the corrupt system evident at the school that hurts the students more so than help them. It’s as if they’re just punishing the students for whatever purpose and not necessarily doing it because they want to help the students. If the teachers and staff at the school really want to support the students be prepared for the real world, they gotta come up with different methods and approaches instead of acting on these systems and thoughts that only hurts the students more so than help them.
I’m glad that in between the intensity and build-up of the X investigation, we’re also getting more comedic moments and romantic relationships (Teacher Shim and Officer Soo-ji are too cute). It’s good to not always be so caught up with the case and to instead have those few minutes where you’re sitting relaxed on your seat and not gripping your hair because you realize that Tae-woon or Eunho can be caught at any moment (though I am wondering how much more they can be punished than they already are). I’m liking the mood and tone that episode 8 presented to us and I’m hoping that the drama will keep staying this way until the very end. Everything about this episode was great and cute and touching and bittersweet – just like how it should be.