School 2017: Episode 11 recap

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Ahhhh, I don’t know. I don’t even know anymore. So many things are happening and this drama makes my blood boil. LOL. Getting a good episode from this drama comes around once in a blue moon, but when the drama does deliver and we do get that good episode it makes everything worth it.

Unfortunately, today was not that episode.

Note: I apologize for the late recap! Episode 12’s recap will be up tomorrow.

School 2017 episode 7: Dreams, Sparkly but Unnerving

In episode 10, we ended with Tae-woon and Dae-hwi revealing their identities as X to each other. However, the intense scene is interrupted by a school guard who catches the two on campus late at night. They manage to escape from the guard by hiding in a room together. Once out of the guard’s sight, Tae-woon asks Dae-hwi why he’s pretending to act as X. He lists 2 reasons: 1) Hee-chan knows that Tae-woon’s X but he just needs a confirmation for everything 2) Eunho could be in possible danger because of Tae-woon. Dae-hwi takes off the black sweater and stays behind in the room while Tae-woon leaves.

Add Dae-hwi onto the list of people who know about Tae-woon’s hideaway spot. He enters the warehouse with Tae-woon and together they get into another argument. This time, Dae-hwi’s angry at Tae-woon for being so selfish in committing all these pranks/incidents as X and possibly getting Eunho into more trouble. But Tae-woon defends himself by saying that this all started in the first place because of Dae-hwi who decided to team up with Hee-chan. Tae-woon almost swings his fist into Dae-hwi’s face, but he stops himself and walks away (can you two just please stop fighting? Pleeeease? For just once?). Dae-hwi receives a phone call from Hee-chan but doesn’t pick up the call.

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Tae-woon reflects on Dae-hwi’s words that was mentioned in their earlier conversation. Dae-hwi suggest that Tae-woon just turn himself in as X. Hee-chan and Dae-hwi already know he’s X and hiding it would only get Eunho into more trouble.

Tae-woon looks for Hee-chan the next day only to find out that he’s outside talking to Dae-hwi. While he waits outside near the two and listens in on their conversation, Dae-hwi and Hee-chan are talking about Dae-hwi’s identity as X. It doesn’t make any sense to Hee-chan why Dae-hwi would be X, but Dae-hwi explains that maybe he’s doing this after years of putting up with Hee-chan’s abuse and threats. Hee-chan hopes to use the revelation of X as a reason to warn Eunho how dangerous and powerful he can be. He needs to teach her a lesson so she’ll stop.

Dae-hwi leaves Hee-chan only to encounter Tae-woon not too long after. He steps out from hiding and walks past the both of them.

Tae-woon just can’t seem to catch a break. When he’s not arguing with Dae-hwi or Hee-chan, he’s busy being jealous over Eunho. The same guy who confessed to Eunho in the earlier episode returns again this time and asks Eunho out on a movie date. Of course, our Tae-woonie gets jealous and refuses to let her go with him. He even eats the candy that was originally given to her by the guy (omg haha). Tae-woon also asks Eunho about his confession and what her answer to his confession is, but she awkwardly avoids the subject. She’ll tell him someday what her answer is.

Announcements about Bit-na and Bo-ra’s fighting incident as well as the school violence hearing between Eunho and Hee-chan is posted. Students commend Eunho and Bo-ra for their bravery and win, but Bit-na isn’t too happy with the news.

While walking outside together, Eunho, Bo-ra, and Sarang come across Hee-chan. Eunho demands for an apology from him since she won the school violence hearing, but Hee-chan refuses to. He’s going to file a complaint against her. Wow, he just doesn’t know when to stop.

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But his plans are ruined when Hee-chan’s mother tells him to rather just focus on studying instead. She expresses frustration in providing all that she can for Hee-chan to succeed, but not achieving much. That’s when Hee-chan explodes on his mother. He too is tired and he’s frustrated and suffocating inside. He also can’t do this much longer. Hee-chan’s mother watches his son cry in front of her in shock and agony.

Staff and faculty has a meeting in the teacher’s office room at school. Teacher Jang will be punished accordingly for her unfair evaluation against Bo-ra thanks to Teacher Shim’s re-investigation of the Bit-na and Bo-ra case. But this is a lesson that should be learned in the future. Everyone should be fair and unbiased when evaluating students. Teacher Shim then heads on with his day when a man walks into the teacher’s office room. He watches as the man gives his classroom a moving and heart-felt speech about dreams. He ends the class by encouraging his students to achieve their dreams.

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In Tae-woon’s secret hideaway, Eunho gets excited over the increasing views of her webtoon. Although she acted oblivious at first, she knew all along that Tae-woon was the person behind the comments. Hahaha. She thanks him for being her first fan to her webtoon. Aww. She then asks Tae-woon about dreams and if he has any. Although he claims he doesn’t, Eunho sees the potential he has in being an artist since he is a good drawer.

Eunho’s concerned that she won’t become a successful webtoon artist. There are so many other people doing the same thing as her that she can just easily fail and fade into the background. Eunho worries that she won’t succeed and that she’s not doing good enough, but Tae-woon encourages her to keep trying. Maybe there is some hope among all the competition she’s facing.

That night, Eunho checks her webtoon for new comments and views. She receives a new comment from the username “Nice Guy” aka Tae-woon and reads that maybe the lead character of her webtoon (aka her) should try falling in love. Maybe then the character will come to life. Lol.

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It’s Bit-na’s birthday. Nam-joo gets her a scented candle which some classmates comment looks and sounds cheap. Errr. They then continue to be nosy by asking her about her dad being the CEO of a taxi company as well as about her relationship with Dae-hwi. Dae-hwi, who’s sitting next to them, chimes in that yes, he and Nam-joo did break up. Frustrated, Nam-joo confronts Dae-hwi about it later on at school. How dare he hurt her pride and tell everyone the honest truth? Lol. Nam-joo walks away hurt.

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Eunho finds out from Tae-woon that his dad likes their chicken. Aww, haha. No wonder he’s been getting some for Tae-woon as well. In replacement of ordering delivery, Eunho permits Tae-woon to come over to her house to learn how to fry one chicken. Just one chicken. That’s it. No more delivery orders from him, haha.

Eunho and Tae-woon head out to make delivery orders together (“there are too many weirdos out there”). It’s not until certain girls they deliver to compliment Tae-woon’s looks that Eunho learns to appreciate Tae-woon. Tae-woon teases Eunho for being jealous, but then gets mad at her when she tells him to go date those girls. HAHAHA. The 180 change in his mood is hilarioussss. Tae-woon doesn’t want to date anyone else but Eunho and is helping her deliver chicken because he wants to see her and always be next to her (okay, this is getting a little too cheesy for me. Please, someone stop themmm). He manages to sneak a selfie with Eunho.

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While driving, Tae-woon’s motorcycle breaks down. He goes to get it fixed and waits with Eunho at the shop. While at the shop, Tae-woon takes a look at the other motorcycles and goes off on a tangent about the different motorcycles there and each component of the motorcycle. It’s obvious he has some sort of passion and interest in motorcycles and Eunho looks at him in admiration and awe as he continues to gush over motorcycles (ooh, I think someone’s falling in loveeee). And also, I’ve never seen Tae-woon get so excited over anything other than Eunho.

That night, they have a heartfelt conversation about Joong-gi and dreams. While Eunho still struggles to ride the bus because of the incident with Joong-gi, Tae-woon has been able to ride his motorcycle even after the incident because of his best friend who’s been the main motivation for him to do so. Since Tae-woon has a huge passion and interest in motorcycles, maybe his dream could be to design motorcycles Eunho suggests. But dreams? The only dream that exists for Tae-woon is Eunho.

Eunho has a delicious and warm dinner with her family. Their dad treats them all to expensive but yummy food. Hopefully they can continue to afford these type of food with more job offerings in the future.

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The next morning at school, Tae-woon receives a note from Eunho on the desk in his hideaway spot. The note from Eunho encourages Tae-woon to achieve his dreams and to do what it is that he wants. Eunho gifts him a magazine of motorcycles along with the note. Aww, she’s supporting his dreams 🙂

Tae-woon and Dae-hwi come across each other on campus. They almost get into another fight until Teacher Koo stops the both of them in time. The two boys are punished and are responsible for cleaning up a messy classroom together. They object to cleaning together at first, but Teacher Koo gives them no other option. Before leaving the classroom, he has a simple suggestion for them: maybe making up doesn’t sound too bad.

Although it’s a bumpy ride throughout the whole process, the two boys clean the classroom as clean and neat as it can be. Dae-hwi discovers a huge drawing sketchbook owned by Tae-woon when he used to draw, but pretends he didn’t see it when Tae-woon enters the classroom.

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Dae-hwi and Tae-woon enjoy a drink together while sitting outside. They talk about Eunho for a little bit before being interrupted by a phone call from Hee-chan. Dae-hwi ignores his call though and expresses that he doesn’t regret cutting ties with him. He’s had enough of Hee-chan.

Speaking of Hee-chan, he enters the ex-principal’s office who is still trying to crack down on the X investigation case. He claims that he knows who X is and is willing to give the former principal some details. That following day, the ex-principal visits Tae-woon’s father and asks for a second chance. If he is re-instated to be principal again he’s sure he can find who X is within a week.

After school, Hee-chan’s mother volunteers to give Dae-hwi a ride home like how she used to, but Dae-hwi respectfully declines and chooses to walk home instead. Wow, he really must not want to have to do anything with Hee-chan. Tae-woon notices this change in Dae-hwi’s behavior and decides to approach him later on that day. He ends up taking the same route Dae-hwi usually takes to get home even though his house is all the way on the opposite side. “I’m just gonna go home using this way today!” Lol. Oh Tae-woon.

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Teacher Shim has a meeting with the leader of the 3 bullies. Although he encourages her to do good in school so she won’t get expelled, Officer Soo-ji who is also in the same room as them tells her to do one or the other. She should either stay in school and excel in it or just rebel properly and leave. This angers the students and she leaves.

Lol, omg poor Teacher Jung. In gym class, Officer Soo-ji does demonstrations of how to practice self-defense against perverts or attackers. Teacher Jung at first gets excited over getting to “touch” Officer Soo-ji, but this happiness doesn’t last too long once he gets thrown around and around by Officer Soo-ji. LOL. All the students watch in amazement but pain at this sight. Officer Soo-ji volunteers bully leader to practice the different methods she showed earlier and to everyone’s surprise, she’s actually quite good at it. She manages to flip Teacher Jung on her first try. Officer Soo-ji sees potential in bully leader, claiming she’s good enough she can be a police officer.

Eunho comes home to an angry mom and conflicted dad and brother (oh nooo). Turns out Dad and Brother got scammed and used money that was originally meant for their security deposit. Mom isn’t happy about this, but they can’t do anything about it now. She calls friends and acquaintances for job opportunities so she can make up for the money that they lost.

Eunho quits her drawing class that her dad had been paying for her to take and takes on more hours for work. Meanwhile, her brother goes and tries to find jobs. All this is too stressful and overwhelming for Eunho she breaks down while outside alone at night.

Eunho packs her belongings that were in Tae-woon’s hideaway spot and lies that she’s going to take a break from drawing. We also see her working at a convenience store as her other part-time job. She’s not the best at it, but she works her hardest and tries her best. But it’s not too long until Tae-woon finds out about Eunho’s new job. He wants her to stop working and instead to focus on drawing and studying, but it’s not that easy for Eunho. She’s not as fortunate as Tae-woon and actually has to work to make money.

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At first Eunho tries to explain to Tae-woon why she decided to stop drawing, but it’s too difficult for her. Instead, she asks for Tae-woon to leave her alone before leaving the coffee shop (NOOOOO. DON’T SAY THAT EUNHO).

While riding the bus home, Dae-hwi’s mind wanders back to Nam-joo and all the memories they made when they were still a couple. Maybe he hasn’t moved on like how he acts like he does.

Meanwhile, Eunho and Tae-woon can only think about each other. His patience runs out and he heads out to find her. They end up encountering each other at a neighborhood near Eunho’s house where Tae-woon hands her a laptop. If she claims her computer broke which is why she stopped drawing, then maybe everything will be fixed if she had a laptop to draw on.

But things aren’t that simple. Eunho just can’t simply return to drawing like how Tae-woon thinks she can. Things aren’t as easy for people like her. She grows frustrated and embarrassed over his kindness and makes a final decision.

Eunho wants her and Tae-woon to stop talking to each other. She doesn’t want to be affiliated and involved with him anymore. She doesn’t want him to think about her anymore. That’s her final response in regards to his confession.

My Thoughts:

Wow, I’m so mad. How could the drama even think about doing this to us?! AHHH.

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Before I comment about the break-up, I’ve realized after 11 episodes that the thing about School 2017 that makes me frustrated is its lack of consistency. It builds the entire episode to lead up to the finale moments of the episode and gives us this huge dramatic finish without actually following up with it in the next episode. School 2017 is like that one friend who says they’ll do something for you, but then actually doesn’t do what they said they would do in the end and instead just leaves you hanging. The drama has constantly left us hanging without actually providing us some substance, content, progress on plots that it had been showing viewers.

For example, in the last episode we see this really huge dramatic and intense moment of Tae-woon and Dae-hwi removing the hoodies from their heads and basically revealing to each other their identities as X. It was such a grand finale moment and the episode was basically dedicated to this scene. But then in this episode, we never got anything out of that. What happened to Tae-woon and Dae-hwi knowing that they’re both X now? Why does the drama spend so much time emphasizing on Dae-hwi and Tae-woon acting both as X and then give us minimal content about it in the next episode? The drama literally just teases viewers with cliffhangers for whatever purposes, but doesn’t actually know what to do with them. If you’re going to spend so much time hyping up the entire episode for the cliffhangers at the end of every episode, then deliver. Make it well worth it. Don’t do it just because you need a reason to keep your viewers interested. Do something with it.

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Maybe this might just be me, but now that Dae-hwi has also been pretending to be X and he knows Tae-woon is X and vice versa, I want some real action! I want some real drama! Confront the corruption of the school system up and break it apart. The two boys can work together to break the unequal school system so ingrained in every aspect of the school from the administration to the staff and faculty down to even the students. I understand that there are a lot more risks now that Hee-chan has an idea that Tae-woon is X, but the drama spent so much time and still spends time on this plot but it’s all just useless timing. It’s a repetitive cycle where people suspect others on who X is, but you don’t really ever get anywhere. I want Tae-woon and Dae-hwi to work together in an effort to 1) break apart the corrupt school system 2) unconsciously and unknowingly use this identity as X to make amends with each other again.

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Also, with Tae-woon and Dae-hwi, I know this is literally the thing we’ve been waiting for the past 6 weeks, but why did it take so long for us to get there? The drama spent so much time covering Dae-hwi and Tae-woon’s hate relationship with each other that in this episode when they started warming up to each other I was happy because that was what I wanted, but the impact just simply wasn’t there. It makes sense why Tae-woon is taking the first steps in approaching Dae-hwi again because he’s understanding that maybe Dae-hwi is really changing and he’s not going to be Hee-chan’s puppet like how he was back then. But what I don’t understand is why it took us 11 episodes to get here — to get to this point. We had so many episodes of the same kind of arguments and fights between the two boys, the pacing of their relationship could have been a lot smoother and the pay-off could have been a lot more meaningful and worthy. But I didn’t feel any of those things in this episode and it’s such a shame because the drama did well giving us angst between the two (a little repetitive but I mean they got the point across), but then now that their relationship has switched the drama didn’t deliver all the way through.

And also, why did it have to take Teacher Koo to make a comment about making up for the two boys to actually consider that? Is it because he’s an adult? Is it because he’s a teacher? Eunho – who means dearly to both boys – have been suggesting this for the past few episodes, but the neither of them never listened to her and then it wasn’t until this episode when Teacher Koo suggested it that they then thought about doing it. Eunho means more to them than Teacher Koo does, but they didn’t follow her words. So why make up now? Don’t get me wrong. I’m glad that they’re slowly starting to rebuild their friendship even if that will take some time and some steps to get there which is fine because I’m all about the process and not necessarily the end result, but the impact of seeing the start to this process was lackluster. What prompted the both of them to suddenly change their ways and shift their views about each other so suddenly after months and months of non-stop fighting?

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I think it’s so interesting (and ironic) that Eunho was always the one to talk about dreams to Tae-woon and was in the process of achieving hers and was the catalyst encouraging Tae-woon to follow his, but then with just one decision made by her family she had to give up everything she worked so hard for. It’s the most ironic thing in the world and it’s heart-breaking watching her give up on her dream of becoming a webtoon artist because we all know how passionate she is about it and how much she loves it. She faced so many obstacles just to get to this point and now that she has to give it all up involuntarily makes things even worse.

Okay, now on to the “break-up.” Omg.. I don’t even know where to start. I stand by what I said earlier about the drama teasing viewers with dramatic cliffhangers at the end of every episode because I felt like the drama just wanted them to break-up just for the heck of it – not because it actually really serves any purpose in the plot/narrative. And I say this because in this episode we see Tae-woon and Eunho once again confiding in each other and having real deep conversations about life, dreams, and Joong-gi so you obviously witness just how close they’ve become and how much they mean to each other. But then by the end of this episode, you have Eunho wanting to disassociate with Tae-woon and for me, this just seemed to sudden. I think given her situation and her feelings and thoughts, I don’t blame her for feeling that way. I think her argument about Tae-woon getting things easy while less fortunate people like her have to work harder to survive in this world is accurate and relevant. Her feelings and thoughts are totally valid. My issue is with the pacing though because you have the two being all lovey-dovey with each other at the beginning and middle of the episode and then towards the end she didn’t want to have to do anything with him anymore. It was too much of a sudden change and shift especially after all the little moments of the two the drama had showed us that made you understand how and why they got close. Did the drama just give us a sad ending because it had nothing else to work with? It shouldn’t be though because the show actually has some content or substance, it just lacks consistency in focusing on those many plots.

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Despite my frustration with the pacing and inconsistency with the show, it’s not the characters who I’m THAT frustrated with. I actually enjoy the angst because to me it makes sense. I understand Eunho’s frustration with Tae-woon because he’s naive and he thinks that everything can be settled and solved so easily. For Tae-woon who grew up rich and privileged, he doesn’t understand the struggles people less fortunate deal with and that’s not necessarily his fault, but I could see why Eunho is frustrated with him. But at the same time, Tae-woon doesn’t know any better and he genuinely wanted to help Eunho achieve her dreams. Just like how she motivated him to achieve his dreams of possibly becoming a designer for motorcycles, he wants to return the favor and do the same for her by providing her his support. So I see where both sides are coming from and I understand why this an issue between the two and how it has come about. I’m glad that this dilemma in class/status is what’s causing a shift in Tae-woon and Eunho’s relationship because 1) this is a theme/motif consistent throughout the drama so it’s built into the narrative and continually emphasized upon 2) Eunho and Tae-woon aren’t growing apart because of other small irrelevant issues like jealousy, Dae-hwi, interjection of other characters, etc.

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BUT the thing that I didn’t understand though is her reaction to his support/help. The drama’s going to give us these cute, bubbly, and raw moments between the two this entire time and then all of a sudden have the two break apart. Like why? Maybe Eunho was caught up in the moment and is so stressful and overwhelmed that she just needed some time alone so maybe that’s why she said such hurtful words, but I don’t understand why she wants to stop seeing him. He’s been your best friend the past few months. He’s been the one you spent so much time with and shared your thoughts, dreams, and feelings with. He’s the one you abandoned your original best friend for because you enjoyed spending time with him and maybe found a part of home in every moment or time you spent together. So why do you want to break up with him after all this time? If the drama wanted to give us angst and a break-up between the two love birds, it should have been more logical. If the drama had shown us Eunho reflecting on Tae-woon’s behavior and showed her conflicted over receiving his help and support the past few episodes, then maybe I could see why she would want to break up with him. But we didn’t get any of that at all and we actually got the opposite where the two were always together and on good terms so this break-up just came out of no where for me.

Like I’ve been emphasizing, the drama gives us moments just for the heck of it without explaining why it is or without actually doing anything about it. It builds its entire episode around the finale moment of every episode and then proceeds with the next episode as if nothing happens. I’m definitely sad that the two are “breaking up” and maybe it’s even more hurtful because they weren’t exactly an official couple yet so they parted before they could even start, but the drama just wanted them to break apart just for the heck of it, not because it actually has some use in the overall narrative and plot. Such a disappointment and definitely very sad.

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I know it might seem like I dislike the drama, but that’s not true. I enjoy it. I think it’s fun, quirky, bubbly, and cute with some dose of angst and sadness in there. I like our characters and I definitely enjoy the moments between our characters especially Eunho and Tae-woon. But there are many plot holes with this drama that I just can’t seem to avoid and ignore no matter how many times I try to overlook it so I just feel the need to point them out. I will still finish this drama because it’s not that bad, but I’m also hoping for a lot more improvement in many different aspects.

Come on School 2017, don’t fail me now.

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