Wow. Just wow. This mini-drama was absolutely amazing and beautiful in ways that I honestly never expected. I’m not sure whether it was because I recapped this starting at 4AM that I feel this way about the drama or because it really is that beautiful, but this music drama did many things very well. Two episodes too short, but two episodes done in a very satisfying and fulfilling way.
To. Jenny: Episode 2/Finale Recap
Episode two begins with Jung-min writing and making another song. While he works hard to make the new song titled ‘Your Song’, his mother is in the hospital for exhaustion and fatigue. Uncle visits Jung-min at the convenience store and drags him outside with his guitar. He demands Jung-min to play in front of an audience. If he manages to do so successfully, Uncle won’t pester him anymore to stop singing and making music. Jung-min musters up all the courage he has inside of him to perform, but he still suffers from stage fright. He’s unable to perform.
Nara finally visits Jungmin again and they go out to have some drinks. At the restaurant, Nara shares with Jungmin details about her break-up as well as her fears in life. She’s afraid people are going to forget about her and disapprove of her once she re-debuts. But Jungmin sheds a few tears and reassures her that she’ll be fine; she’s a charming and pretty young lady. Plus, her love life couldn’t possibly be worse than his. He’s been single for 10,000 days! (Aww, he cried for her!).
As they walk out of the restaurant together, Nara discovers an advertisement for an Open Mic Session that she wants Jungmin to sign up and perform for. He’s a bit hesitant because he’s still traumatized from that night he performed at the high school art festival, but he eventually gives in. He’ll perform and Nara will be there to watch him. They make a promise to each other.
Jungmin drops Nara off at her house. Before they bid farewell, he hands her a piece of paper with lyrics to the song he wrote for her. Titled ‘Your Song’, it’s a gift from him to her. Nara thanks Jungmin for the gift and expresses her excitement for the song. She’ll try singing it when she gets home. They’re too cute!
Jungmin wakes up in the morning to find a text message from Nara of her singing the song he gave her as a gift. In the video, she records herself singing to the song while playing the guitar. He watches the video proudly and in his mind, he can imagine the two of them singing the song together and collaborating. When the video ends, his younger sister asks him about the video. Nara’s also posted it on her Instagram and it seems like everyone likes the song. Aww.
Nara receives good news from the CEO of her agency. They’ll release the song that Jungmin wrote for her as a single and if the response is positive, she’ll move on to release an album. She shares the exciting news with Jungmin at the convenience store and gives him a hug to thank him. She asks for his permission to use his song which he approves of and then heads back to the recording studio.
Jungmin’s two friends who are at the store witness the hug and grow confused. What did Jungmin do for Nara to choose him? Why him out of all people? Haha. Jungmin remains too busy contacting Nara though. They arrange plans for a date the next day.
Aileen – Nara’s labelmate – has a meeting with CEO. She watches the video of Nara singing to ‘Your Song’ and seems interested in the track itself.
That night, Jungmin makes some kimbap to bring to the date with Nara. He’s so happy he’s singing a song while wrapping the kimbap and he’s re-imagining his hug with Nara. When he finally returns to reality, he’s greeted by his younger sister who just watches him in confusion and disbelief. Haha. He shares with her his plans for his date with Nara.
The two ride a train to head to a festival. While on the train, Jungmin shares with Nara the kimbap that he made the night before. They’re soon joined by a man who sits in the seat right across from them (OMG IT’S JUNHO FROM 1N2D!! I TOTALLY WASN’T EXPECTING HIM TO BE IN THIS DRAMA?? WHAT IS HE DOING HERE?! I’M SO SHOOK AHHHH!! I LOVE KIM JUNHO!). The man – who I will just name Junho – stares at Nara and Jungmin eat the kimbap. He’s a little hungry too so they kindly share some with him. However, Kimbap Junho might be a little too hungry and eats most of the pieces. Jungmin manages to save the last remaining pieces for him and Nara to enjoy.
As a sign of gratitude and appreciation for the small snack, Kimbap Junho volunteers to read their fortune for them. After staring lovingly into Nara’s eyes and face for a bit too long, he concludes that Jungmin should treat her nicely. She’s way too kind and angelic so he needs to make sure that she’s treated right. Kimbap Junho leaves when he sees the train conductor, but grabs one more piece of kimbap first before doing so.
The festival they attend is a wild halibut and snapper festival. They film and document their experience at the festival which seemed to be very fun. Afterwards, the two visit many different places together and take pictures and videos of themselves and everything else in between. Before they know it, the sun has set and it’s night time.
They sneak inside a building and Nara walks onto the stage. That specific building where they’re currently in was the very first place she performed with her former idol group Cocoa. She performs again but this time for Jungmin who’s clearly enjoying her solo performance.
As she walks off the stage and back to Jungmin, they hear noise coming from outside. Afraid and terrified, they run into a closet to hide. The two watch as the security guard enters the building to check up on it and then leaves. As Nara notifies Jungmin of the guard’s exit, she turns her head to find herself standing directly across from Jungmin. Their bodies next to each other and his face hovered a little above hers.
The mood is intense and silent and nothing happens for a few seconds. At that moment, Jungmin takes the leap forward and kisses Nara on the lips. She’s shocked at first, but closes her eyes afterwards. Jungmin suddenly jolts back and apologizes to her and together the two leave the building in awkward silence.
The train ride back home and the walk back to Nara’s house is just as awkward. They bid each other farewell and he heads back home regretful and concerned. His younger sister Ok-hee notices his gloomy behavior and questions why he looks so down. Jungmin feels like he’s in trouble and his anxiety multiplies even more when Nara texts him at that moment.
He starts to acknowledge his faults and apologize to Nara until Nara confronts to him why she’s upset: he didn’t buy her any hotdogs at the festival. ASDKFJD. THIS IS SO FUNNY AND RELATABLE. I too would be upset if I didn’t get any hotdogs at a festival honestly. Jungmin smiles in relief after Nara’s comment and he returns to the happy, cheerful, and excited fool he was before his date. Ok-hee is concerned for her brother.
Nara finishes recording the song that Jungmin wrote for her as a gift in the recording studio. Meanwhile, Jungmin visits the cafe that hosts the Open Mic sessions, but he can’t bring himself to sign up for it. He’s still too nervous. As he exits the cafe, he receives a phone call from Nara. They have to hold their guitar lesson somewhere else rather than at Nara’s place like usual because of the construction noise near her place.
Jungmin and Nara have no other place to have the guitar lesson than at Jungmin’s house. He introduces her to his mom and Ok-hee and explains to them about the construction at her place. She’s at their house to have the guitar lessons.
Nara has improved tremendously with her guitar skills. While the two practice in Jungmin’s bedroom, Mom and Ok-hee peak inside the room to watch the two of them. THEY’RE TOO CUTE OMG HAHAHA. Nara also discovers that Jungmin has always been a long time fan of her and her former idol group Cocoa. He even has a physical copy of their debut album. Oh ho ho, he’s a true fan. Asdkfd.
While Jungmin tries to get the album out of Nara’s hands, he falls onto her on the bed. The mood is quickly ruined thanks to Mom and Ok-hee who are peaking into the bedroom again. AHHHH, they’re too funny.
Nara enters the recording studio to find Aileen singing the song that Jungmin wrote for her. OH HELL NO. I knew this was gonna happen! Nara confronts her CEO about it and asks him why he gave Aileen her song. The CEO answers that Aileen’s album is going to be released soon and they needed a good pre-release song. Plus, the song isn’t Nara’s; it belongs to Jungmin. The CEO reassures Nara that he’ll find her another song, but Nara doesn’t want a new song. In fact, she’s exhausted and fed up with her CEO. For the past seven years, he’s never cared about her and she’s tired of his talks about contract renewals. She doesn’t want to renew her contract with him again.
Wow, can CL do this to YG too?
Nara avoids and ignores Jungmin’s phone calls and texts for the rest of the day. She’s a little too upset and sad to talk to anyone.
Jungmin receives a phone call the next day at work from an employee at Nara’s former entertainment agency. They contact him in hopes of discussing about the song contract for the song he had originally written for Nara that’s now being sung by Aileen. It’s through this phone call when he learns of Nara’s expired contract with her agency and he runs to her place in a desperate effort to contact her. However, she’s still dejected and unhappy and doesn’t open the door for him.
Jungmin waits the entire day near Nara’s apartment for a response from her, but ultimately leaves when she doesn’t respond. It’s not until that night when he finally receives a text from her. She needs some time to herself so she won’t be able to meet him as often as they used to for the time being.
Nara wakes up the next morning to a visit by a deliveryman. He delivers some chicken in front of her apartment even though she didn’t order it. The food is from none other than Jungmin himself and for the next few days, he continues to order different types of foods and have it delivered to her house. (I’m gonna cry. He’s seriously so sweet buying her food and making sure she’s well fed. Where can I find a man like Jungmin myself?!).
Jungmin manages to sign up for the Open Mic session. He shares the frightening news with Ok-hee and is uncertain if he can go through with it. He only did it because he promised Nara he would perform, but he’s so not sure about things now. Ok-hee reassures Jungmin that he’ll be fine; they can practice little by little.
Nara is slowly retreating from her shell. She works at a new part-time job at an internet cafe (PC bang). Meanwhile, Jungmin practices for his Open Mic session with the help and support of his two best friends and Ok-hee. They head out to a park near the river where he performs his song in front of them. The beginning of the performance goes well until he starts to panic with the increase in audience members and runs away in fear. On that night and the next few, Jungmin runs away when people show even the slightest bit of interest in him. Things aren’t going that well for him.
Jungmin informs and invites Nara to his Open Mic session. He’s trying to fulfill his promise to Nara. He also has a conversation with his uncle about his performance. Jungmin is going to give his music career one last try with this performance and if things don’t go well, he’ll stop pursuing music once and for all. But Uncle doesn’t trust anything Jungmin says anymore and walks away.
Jungmin’s two best friends are playing games at the same PC bang where Nara works. As they pay for their fees, they notice Nara working the cash register. They’re surprised to see Nara at the internet cafe and ask her if she plans on attending Jungmin’s Open Mic session later on that night. But Nara has no plans of going because she has work. Upset, one of Jungmin’s friend calls her selfish after all that Jungmin’s done for her. His other friend hands her a piece of paper with a link to Jungmin’s instagram account and asks that she visit the link at least once.
It’s almost time for Jungmin’s Open Mic performance. He waits nervously in front of everyone for Nara to enter through the doors, but she remains at work. Instead, Jungmin’s uncle enters the room to watch him perform. Aww.
The clock hits 8PM and it’s time for Jungmin to perform. While he performs the same song that he had written for Nara, she visits his Instagram account while at work and witnesses all the videos and hard work he’s put into all the songs he’s made. As for Jungmin? He’s doing just fine and slightly opens his eyes to take a peek at the reactions of the audience members.
Nara’s finally had enough and prepares to leave work to watch Jungmin’s performance. But somehow, she finds herself standing directly across from him at work (WAIT WHAT??? I’M SO CONFUSED??? WHAT’S GOING ON?? Lol).
He performs in front of her (and all the other people in the internet cafe) yet another song he’s written about her. After all the recent incidents with the break-up, her stolen song, and life in general, Jungmin was inspired to write her an encouraging song. Through the song, he reassures her that everything will be fine and that she’s perfectly fine the way she is. There’s nothing wrong with her or what she did. A huge smile widens on her face after he finishes performing the song while everyone else goes back to playing their games. Hey! He performed in front of an audience! Lol.
Jungmin’s description on his Instagram bio has changed from ‘to. jenny’ to ‘Jenny&mini.’ Through an Instagram Live story, he performs a rendition of the song that he wrote for Nara, but is soon joined by Nara herself. Together, the duet perform with each other the meaningful song and it’s not just the two who enjoy the tune and find a sense of solace on it. The increasing amount of viewers on the Instagram Live story also feel the same way about the song.
I’m just gonna sit here in silence and disappointment because I finally realized and learned that the song that Jungmin and Nara sang is a cover of Sam Kim and Kwon Jin-Ah’s ‘Your Song.’ I’m so mad because I love Sam Kim and he’s one of my favorite artists, but yet I didn’t know that the song Jungmin and Nara sang was originally his. ASKFJD. WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME.
Anyways, there might be things wrong with me, but there definitely wasn’t anything wrong with this drama. Although I do wished Nara would have been there to watch Jungmin’s open mic performance, it also made sense the way that he went to her to perform for her. He’s doing the Open Mic performance FOR her and she was the one who motivated him to go out of his comfort zone, to overcome his fears, and to sign up for that Open Mic session. He wanted her there and when she didn’t come, he decided to go to her so that he could express his gratitude and appreciation and love for her in the same platform that he’s used in the past: music.
I don’t think I’ve ever been so satisfied with a mini-drama the way I am with ‘To. Jenny.’ This second episode especially really blew me away and surprised me with how sweet, well-paced, smooth, and logical of a development the hour long episode was. It transitioned well and the story never fell flat and there was this build-up to the long anticipated moment where Jungmin would perform in front of an audience again. Episode one was great but it was introductory and foundational so there wasn’t a whole lot going on. But man, episode two really blew me away because so many things happened within this one episode and everything was so well done.
We clearly got to witness how important and crucial Jungmin and Nara has been in each other’s lives and their contributions towards helping the other grow as individuals. Because of Nara, Jungmin was finally able to overcome his trauma and perform in front of an audience again. Because of Jungmin, Nara was able to not only sing a song that she finds comfort and solace in, but also overcame her struggles of isolation and put herself back out there. The two grew as a result of meeting each other and spending time together. Music has bonded the two in ways that they never expected but are ultimately grateful for and the drama did a wonderful job in emphasizing this connection throughout its two-episode run.
I can’t say this enough, but I just really loved the relationship between Nara and Jungmin. They were so adorable and cute together, but even when they faced a few bumps along the way in their relationship, Jungmin never stopped showing that he cared. He cried for her when she was so vulnerable in front of him and shared with him her fears. He sent food to her house even though she didn’t order any because he knew that she wasn’t feeding herself. He didn’t have to physically be with her to show her that he cared; he showed her his love and support in other ways and it was in these small subtle ways that really proved how beautiful and strong their relationship was.
As I mentioned earlier, music brought our couple together and lead them to each other and their relationship lasts through time with a song that they both find comfort in. ‘Your Song’ is a song that means so much to the both of them and I guess you can say that the song is theirs (literally and figuratively). It represents their relationship and serves as a reminder of the beautiful struggles they went through, but also of how they will always have each other no matter what.
Episode 2 really did wonders and proved to be such a smooth, beautiful, heart-warming, light, and fluffy episode. It did get a little bit more serious towards the end once Nara shut herself out, but it still maintained the same mood and emotions that it had before. What I appreciated the most was with how Jungmin and Nara’s individual stories were flexed out and then wrapped up. Up until the very end, Jungmin’s uncle didn’t believe in him, but it wasn’t until the open mic performance that he saw the potential in Jungmin that Jungmin so desperately wanted to unleash. Jungmin’s just a normal young adult who has talent in songwriting and production and wants to do music and wants to share his music with the rest of the world. He has a loving, patient, and understanding Mom and younger sister who both provide unconditional love and support to him in many ways.
Then there’s Nara who wishes to start over again as a singer but has doubts about herself and suffers from low self-esteem. She’s not confident, but she hangs onto the last pieces of hope that something bright will happen to her in the future. And even when she is betrayed and let down, she stands up for herself and does what is best for her even if it’s not necessarily what she wants. She had every right to isolate herself and be upset when the CEO gave her song to Aileen, because she’s gone through a lot since she’s been in the agency. But even more so, ‘Your Song’ was a song that meant a lot to her not only because Jungmin wrote the song for her so it was the first time anyone’s ever written her a song (her company had clearly been doing her wrong her entire career) but also because it meant a second shot at her music career and at success which she had been longing for. I totally understand why she shut herself out and down after her argument with her CEO, but I’m glad that she didn’t let it get to her for too long and ventured out again with the support of Jungmin. And I’m glad even more that we got to witness these details within a two hour episode drama. The drama did a great job in storytelling and execution which is just merely one out of its many strengths.
From Nara and Jungmin’s date to Ok-hee and Jungmin’s two best friends helping Jungmin practice to Junho’s special cameo, everything about this episode was honestly so so nice. I honestly wasn’t expecting the second episode to be this fulfilling and refreshing and nice to watch, but it wrapped everything up perfectly and made sense. The episode flowed very well and you just were so happy throughout the entire thing. Unlike some music dramas, ‘To. Jenny’ was able to effectively and efficiently use music and incorporate it into its narrative. Not only were the songs themselves important for the development of our two leads’s relationship, but music itself was a crucial concept and theme of the drama. This is a drama that successfully used music well to tell stories and to provide us with more context on our characters.
An aspect of this drama that really fascinated me but that I feel indifferent about was the unique filming and editing techniques. Scenes where Jungmin would be seen making his song and imagining it in his mind (e.g.: the tiramisu cake song) were so interesting because I’ve never really seen anything like that before. That’s probably why I don’t really feel a certain way about it, but I do think the way those scenes were filmed and edited were unique and different so I’ll give it that.
This drama introduced me to Kim Sung-cheol and now he’s an actor that I know of and that I’m looking forward to. His portrayal of Jungmin as the naive, innocent, lovesick, and caring guitarist was well done and I enjoyed his acting. Jung Chae-yeon impressed me which really doesn’t come as a surprise because I think she has decent acting skills. The character that stood out to me the most though would have to be Ok-hee, Jungmin’s younger sister! She was absolutely so so adorable and I loved her relationship with Jungmin. Often times, it seemed like she was the older one in the sibling relationship and was always there for her older brother when he needed her. She knew the right things to say and the right ways to cheer him up. Ok-hee is hands down the best younger sister in dramaland and I’m glad that the drama portrayed their sibling relationship as comedic and humorous but also healthy, loving, and supportive. Their sibling relationship is the ideal sibling relationship to be honest and it just felt so nice to watch Jungmin and Ok-hee interact in positive, caring, and loving ways.
Maybe one more episode would have been nice to fully wrap everything up
(or maybe that’s just me being greedy and wanting more of this drama asdkfjd), but I’m satisfied with the two episodes that we got. There was a lot more momentum and content in the second episode that was effectively executed and nicely concluded so I don’t really have too many complaints about this drama. I started it without any expectations and only went in because the title of the drama caught my attention, but the drama concluded with such a pleasant surprise. Now I’m kind of wanting a full drama series with the same cast and the same narrative and many more songs about things like tiramisu and pork belly. Even if I have to perform in front of an audience in order to get those wishes to come true, I’ll do whatever it takes!