A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

Maybe I’m getting older or maybe my taste has never changed to begin with. Boy-crazy heroines drive me off the wall. Lol. My experience with this drama is interesting. While I recapped, my level of frustration level was kept at bay, but after the recap, in hindsight, I had to tskk-tskk at all the good moments that the writer let pass for the sake of love. Had it been in a stronger writer’s hand, these moments would have demonstrated good character growth and depth.

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Episode 2 RECAP:

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School. Our female lead trails behind two fellow students and eavesdrops about a forum called Chun Chun bar wanting to hire a new moderator. She perks up at the idea and asks what a moderator does and gets weird looks from the two girls as they walk off, calling her ignorant.

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I think it’s literature class and the teacher picks Xiao Xi to explain a phrase after catching her reading texts. She, of course, doesn’t know what the phrase is about and the teacher sighs, then encourages the students to treat their parents better right now because the fate you share with your parents is only in this life. It’s apparent the story affects Jiang Chen the most as he stares down quietly, deep in thoughts.

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At the water station, Xiao Xi voices her observation of Jiang Chen’s extra quiet behavior but Jing Xiao is quick to add that he never speaks more than three sentences anyway, to the point she thought he was mute at the beginning of the school year. Xiao Xi asks Jing Xiao what a moderator does and loves the idea of being below the admin but above 100,000 of users. Jing Xiao tells Xiao Xi to stop dreaming of the high-powerful position because she’s doomed to live a peasant’s life but Xiao Xi smugly shows Jing Xiao and the other girls the text messages she received during class from the admin, offering her the all-power position!

Lunch time and I’m glad Lu Yang has the smarts to call the boys – Jiang Chen and Bai Song, to sit with the girls. He then asks the boys to come to the internet cafe later because he’s getting married online. He teases the boys, wondering when it will be their turn to find wives and Xiao Xi furtively throws daggers with her eyes. Lol.

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No is not an answer. After school Lu Yang manages to drag the boys to see his online wedding ceremony, with Xiao Xi pulling Jing Xiao to the same internet cafe. When she learns that the other two boys are still lacking a love interest, she happily sits next to Jiang Chen. There’s funny moment when Lu Yang sees Jing Xiao peeking by his side and dreamily mutters “Sister-in-law!” Boy, that is so not what you want her to be!

Bai Song sees Xiao Xi logs into her QQ chatting account and asks about it. Xiao Xi is surprised he doesn’t have an account and he explains that his swim coach forbids them from playing on the computer. He then points out a swimming competition he’s participating in and invites Xiao Xi to come. She asks if it’s free and he smiles that he’ll pay if she agrees to come. She will come to show him support and on the side, our Jiang Chen throws secret daggers with his frown. Lol.

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Xiao Xi’s smile turns upside down when she sees some reminder notes on screen, the first one is about Jiang Chen’s father and that she needs to stay by his side to console him. She turns to look at him sadly but the moment is ruined when Lu Yang spots their teacher hunting for them at the entrance. They run for their lives. Outside Xiao Xi notices that her bike got stolen and Lu Yang yells at her to prioritize things, so he hops on the same bike as Jiang Chen and Xiao Xi gets on Bai Song’s bike. Lu Yang is like my perverted spirit animal, feeling Jiang Chen’s toned body and getting slapped repeatedly. Lol. On the other hand, Bai Song avoids hitting a pedestrian and his bike tumbles over but notice how his right arm reaches back at lightning rate and protects Xiao Xi from the fall. He says he’s okay but a close-up later shows he might have injured his shoulder. Oh no, my swimmer boy!!

Later that day, she tells her parents about the stolen bike and says she can walk to school as a form of training. She then hints about Jiang Chen’s father’s death anniversary coming up and that his mother will be visiting then. But he’s a boy and might need help preparing things for his mom. Her dad gives her some money. Next morning, Xiao Xi sings excitedly as she walks out of her building, knowing for sure that Jiang Chen will wait for her since he knows she lost her bike.

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Unfortunately, she doesn’t see his bike and has to walk to school. Ha. Lucky for her, her swimmer knight on silver bike Bai Song sees her running and breathing out of her mouth, so he gives her a ride. During the ride, she asks what present would a mom like? Thinking about his mom, he jokes that she might want a new hubby.

They arrive at school and there’s a girls moment as Jing Xiao runs up to greet Xiao Xi and sees Bai Song next to her and doesn’t say a word. Bai Song recognizes that the girls need their privacy and walks away to swim practice. Aww.

Now that she’s a Little Moderator with power at Tieba, Jing Xiao tells Xiao Xi to accept benefits aka bribes and act high and mighty. Hehe. I like this girl. Get it!!

Literature class teacher praises Jiang Chen’s essay and wants him to read it out loud but he quietly refuses so Xiao Xi raises her hand for the task (Good friend Jing Xiao smacks another student’s offer down. Lol).

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The gist of Jiang Chen’s letter: his memory of his dad is an incomplete picture. He doesn’t remember or know when the last time his father has cheered for him. His lasting impression of his dad was the year when he was seven and accidentally made his younger brother fall. Younger bro cried very loudly and as dad approached them, he pushed Jiang Chen to the side. Feeling unloved, young Jiang Chen decided to run away from home, sitting by the river, crying and waiting for dad to come find him. He waited until the sun set for dad to come. Dad then treated him to a bowl of noodle and as he sat behind dad’s bike, it was the moment he felt closest to dad.

During lunch time, Lu Yang compliments Jiang Chen’s essay as touching and asks if his dad still treats him like so, not knowing his dad has passed away already. Xiao Xi makes a face and suggests to Jiang Chen to go home together today and he agrees.

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They walk side by side quietly until she stops him by pulling the back of the bike. She wants him to drop by their home for dinner tonight and without giving her an answer, he hands her the key and the bike, citing he has something to do. He walks listlessly past the noodle restaurant and does not go in.

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Xiao Xi and Jing Xiao go shopping to buy stuff for Jiang Chen’s mom and our heroine drops a wisdom she learned: to defeat a man, one has to conquer his mother. Truer words have never been said! Jing Xiao then asks what’s it like to like someone and Xiao Xi describes the moment when everything around becomes a blur when your crush appears, and Jing Xiao calls it a glow like when gods show up. Heh. Xiao Xi then tells Jing Xiao how she first fell for Jiang Chen at the bookstore under the glimmering lights of sunset.

Unfortunately, her moderating days come to an end immediately after since her study takes a huge chunk of time and she couldn’t keep up with her designated tasks. She honestly explains her situation to the two female classmates who have been clamoring for favors but the two are now upset that she took their “gifts” aka “bribes.” She promises to return their things tomorrow and escapes on Bai Song’s bike when he offers a hand.

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After a short distance, she signals for him to stop and complains that being a mod wasn’t that cool after all. Bai Song agrees with her, being his big boss is way better because he’s a swimming champion. She’s surprised he’s a champion and he promises to take first place to show her tomorrow. OMGAH. You’re so cute.

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At the competition, she comes armed with snacks and a banner. Aww next time girl, bring the whole detention unit with you!! She cheers him on but he lands at second place, ruining his first place record. The reporter asks how he feels to be second and he struggles to find some words until Xiao Xi’s loud voice gets his attention. “Wu Bai Song, you’re the best!” while waving the banner “Wu Bai Song, Fighting!” His frown turns upside down at her sight and he smiles sweetly. I’m dying inside. With his confidence back, he turns to the reporter and coolly adds that being second is being second. “It’s still pretty good.” That’s the true spirit of a graceful loss!

Pause here. The writer is being snarky here, isn’t she? Our Wu Bai Song is second in sports and in love? I want to hug him more because in the locker room, he gets creamed by the coach for losing. 🙁

As if today’s episode is to break my heart, Jiang Chen receives a text message from his mom, saying that his younger brother is sick and she can’t come back but she has sent over money. T_T

Outside the locker room, Xiao Xi tells Bai Song it’s okay to be second today because something better is about to happen! “Big Boss is treating you!”

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Cut to Bai Song’s stoned face staring at her as she pokes her chopsticks into a plateful of nuts. LOL. She tells him to cheer up, the other guy also got second place before. Moreover, she tells him to look at her, she hasn’t gotten that many first place in life and she’s fine. He asks how many and she tries her best and comes up with two times, stating that he’s in a better position than her. But what is killing me right now is the way Bai Song looks at her like she’ll always be first place in his heart. GAHHHHHH!!

She advises him to follow her way of life, despite being wrong and losing in the last 16 years, those things have shaped her tenacious and inspiring attitude. He should learn from her, he nods. Bai Song peeks at the banner behind her and asks if he can have it. Xiao Xi then apologizes for misspelling his name and promises to give him a new one, but he insists on having this one, pushing her to trade the banner with his silver medal. Though she reluctantly agrees, she can’t have dinner with him because she’s late for her date with Jiang Chen.

Man….two sad boys and one eager girl! How to split her so my heart doesn’t quiver for the other boy left behind?!

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Jiang Chen sits on his sofa at home, eyes fixated on his mother’s text message when the door bell rings and Xiao Xi wheedles her way in excitedly. She doesn’t even have to lower her height much to bypass Jiang Chen’s outstretched arm. Ha. She’s excited to have brought some stuff for his visiting mom but Jiang Chen coldly tells her to bring the stuff home. They go back-and-forth about the stuffl; Jiang Chen refusing to reveal the fact that his mother is not coming back and Xiao Xi wondering out loud why he’s so aloof these days. “Do you find other people’s kindness a nuisance?” She angrily shouts at him to open up since his mother always asks her mom how he’s doing, is he eating well? Is he sick? “Are you pretending not to see?!”

He pushes her outside the door and tells her to leave. She huffs and puffs, kicks his door and leaves the stuff at the entrance. Only for three seconds. She gathers the grocery bags and heads home, only to learn that his mother isn’t returning from her parents during dinner time. Her mom criticizes Jiang Chen’s mother for being negligent and heartless, not returning even during her husband’s funeral, while her dad is somewhat defending Jiang Chen’s mother.

The moment her mother gives her some housing document to deliver to Jiang Chen, Xiao Xi wolfs down her rice bowl without breathing and heads out.

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Jiang Chen returns home after a trip to the convenience store and conveniently leaves the door slightly ajar. Hur hur. He takes some medication and slumps against the sofa, which is how Xiao Xi finds him and measures his temperature. Sick! She gathers as many blankets and sweaters as possible to place over him and watches as he sleeps peacefully. At some point in the night, she reaches out and touches his long lashes and jerks back after contact.

In the middle of the night, Jiang Chen wakes up, sees the document, and heads out to the same restaurant he frequented with his father and orders the same noodle dish with extra egg. It’s then that he decides to reply to his mother’s text, acknowledging that he has read the messages and tells her to take care of little brother well. Aww, he’s listening to Xiao Xi. He actually smiles after he sent the text. Be the bigger person and the world will continue to spin, Jiang Chen.

Next morning, Xiao Xi wakes up to a similar scene from episode 1’s ending, Jiang Chen waiting for her.

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She kills me when she approaches him from behind and caresses his backseat, saying sneaky things like it looks comfortable, and perhaps it’s warm in the winter and cool in the summer? LOL. Girl, stop talking and just hop on that darn bike! It’s not a car with heat warmers! XD

She asks quietly if she can sit on it but he quickly refuses and she deflates. Then he passes his bag to her, an unspoken invite for her to hop on. She gets on and adds that she’s very light. Hehe. I would think so girl, you’re only half his height!

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And off they go, riding in the highs of love under the shimmering sunrise.

Today’s epilogue is a huge second-hand embarrassment scene with Xiao Xi dressed up like a widow and singing a song of longing for her dead husband, not knowing her father has entered her room and witnessed the whole fatherless and widowed speech. LOL. REPLAY.

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Episode 3 RECAP:

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Literature class. English teacher struts in to announce the transfer of their class president and thus she selects Jiang Chen as the new appointed president. Jing Xiao leans back and whispers to Xiao Xi, “You’re gonna be the future Class President’s wife!” Sadly, the victim doesn’t think he’s suited for the role, rendering more hands in the air for the job, so Teacher Liu suggests a voting system to be fair and square.

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Therefore, the sweet-talking and students campaign begin! Xiao Xi wonders why a lot of students vie for the role and Jing Xiao simply states that one who hasn’t been there won’t know its benefits. The two walk into class and Xiao Xi eyes Jiang Chen wiping the chalkboard and offers to help, but he says no. On the side, she sighs, “How could they let Jiang Chen wipe the chalkboard!” And Jing Xiao sneers at her, “You think your Jiang Chen is the king? Why can’t he erase the board?” Lol. Xiao Xi defends Jiang Chen, saying that he’s sick and inhaling chalk is not good, which leads Jing Xiao to an idea, “You’re hurt? How about you run for class president. Then you have the power to decide and Jiang Chen won’t have to erase the board anymore.”

Our smitten puppy brims at the idea.

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Lunchtime. Xiao Xi finds out that Jiang Chen doesn’t want to become class president because it’s a nuisance but when Li Wei approaches and asks for his advice on her essay, he agrees to help. Lu Yang thinks there’s something going on with the high-ranking students since he’s positive Li Wei will become the new class president. Xiao Xi bristles when he looks down on her capabilities, “What do YOU know?” but Lu Yang is quickly interrupted by a loud smack on the table by Xiao Xi’s black knight. Bai Song glares to the delight of the ladies and Lu Yang swallows hard and unwillingly spits out, “It’s you, it’s you.” Heh.

In class, english teacher counts the number of participants and Xiao Xi is the last to join. Each of the four has to prepare an election speech.

As Jing Xiao gathers snack, Xiao Xi mutters repeatedly about her regret of joining the election and Jing Xiao thinks she could chop off that naughty hand and let her mother cook it and sell it for money. Lol. Then she hears another student trash-talking Xiao Xi to Li Wei, who doesn’t egg on the topic. That’s good, I don’t like when they make the other love interest villainous on purpose.

Xiao Xi wonders why people are trash-talking her participation and doesn’t think her results in academic is that bad. Always the voice of reason when her friend is in denial, Jing Xiao doesn’t beat around the bushes. Love her honesty and that she’s not unkindly stepping all over Xiao Xi’s dream, still encouraging her friend to show the world her best sides.

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So Xiao Xi begins writing and reading her speech at home but it feels like she’s talking about her father’s accomplishments instead of hers. Dad walks in again to bring her some snacks and overhears her speech. He exchanges an awkward glance and doesn’t say anything. She relocates and practices her changed speech at the school field, which is where Bai Song finds her and shakes his head at her speech. But he’s here to help and wonders if she has advantages over others and she believes it’s her friendliness. Bai Song drops his head and squeezes between his eyes to ease the tension and corrects Xiao Xi, “It’s sincerity! You need to let others know that you might be lacking now but you’re willing to work towards becoming a capable class president.” He also recommends that she spices her background up to be more pitiful. “Aunts and uncles still alive?” HA.

She hits him for joking around and once they are off the green grass, he supports her to say the things she wanted to say out loud. “I want to become Class president.”

“Can’t hear you!”

“I WANT to become Class president!”

“Louder!”

“I WANT TO BECOME CLASS PRESIDENT!”

Bai Song begins running and Xiao Xi chases after him. “Chen Xiao Xi will become class president!” he screams.

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She’s practicing at the water station when Jiang Chen stops by to refill his and she mutters quietly if he’s going to vote for her. He tells her to guess and she brightens, sure that she has his vote.

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Xiao Xi’s turn on the podium and she clears her throat nervously and I love how protective Jing Xiao is because she warns the students to stop laughing. Xiao Xi’s speech is pretty honest as she says what everyone is thinking, that it’s a laughable idea to see her running for class president when she was never a good student in people’s eyes. She admits she makes a lot of mistakes and often finds herself in embarrassing situations. Bai Song signals for their friends to raise the “Fighting” banner. You sweetie. Xiao Xi: “But for everyone I’m willing to change.”

She drops her speech letter and continues naturally, “Starting today, we will begin the next three years together. During these three years, we might argue, we might dislike each other, but we will strive forward for our class. I hope that the image I will imprint in your mind isn’t a Chen Xiao Xi that is tricksy and implicating to others but a Chen Xiao Xi that is of help to everyone. I hope to become a class president who strives forward with everyone. I seek for your help.” *bows*

Impressive. I have to say that Xiao Xi despite being our heroine and is super adorable, is NOT my first choice for class president because her priority doesn’t seem to be studying and that Jiang Chen seems to outrank everything else in her mind. But if taking this title will push her out of that zone and challenge her to become a better person for the good of the people and not for one person, I’m all for it. Now let’s show the viewer a changed Chen Xiao Xi.

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As the voting begins, Xiao Xi’s crestfallen face is seen when she continues to notice the absence of Jiang Chen during class. The results are in, Chen Xiao Xi wins by one vote but she tries to dig her grave (this girl!!) by stating that Jiang Chen also needs to vote, but the teacher says he’s on an errand. As if on cue, he walks in and chooses….. Li Wei. Well, one cannot be angry with his reasonable choice but his loud verbal voting stings Xiao Xi like a slap and she hangs her head. See girl, this is why you’re lucky to be winning! Stop putting all your eggs in one person’s basket. Sigh.

Since it’s a tie, the teacher allows them each to be class president for the next week and does a re-voting next friday. Next week is sports competition week and each girl is in charge of collecting funding from the students.

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Li Wei gives Jiang Chen some snacks, thanking him for the vote but he says he has eaten already. She persists and so he accepts but Jing Xiao turns around to Xiao Xi and calls them the cheating couple. Lol.

Outside, Jing Xiao tells Xiao Xi to change her love interest and receives a no, then Jing Xiao suggests she fight back or risk losing both to Li Wei and Xiao Xi finally freaks out. Jing Xiao: “Raise up your head and straighten your back! Show them the real you!”

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They walk into class where Li Wei’s minion is talking to Jiang Chen and wonders why he didn’t want to become class president. “If you were class president and Li Wei is your assistant, it would have been a perfect combination.” She sees Xiao Xi and adds pointedly, “Then the teacher won’t make us re-vote. Chen Xiao Xi’s last vote was hard to watch.” Jing Xiao fumes and pulls a chair away angrily to make her move but Bai Song pulls her back and swings an arm around Xiao Xi. “That’s right. You guys do look stronger than my Big Boss.” That shuts the minion up and Jiang Chen gets up and leaves but Bai Song shouts out at him and wants to know the reason he didn’t vote for Xiao Xi. Er, I’m not sure him revealing the reason OUT LOUD is a good idea, dear friends?

Jiang Chen: “She is not suitable.”

Oh…. the burns x2.

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Xiao Xi runs after him and asks why she isn’t suitable. But Jiang Chen vaguely says Li Wei is more suitable, an answer which earns him a hard kick to the shin. I know I’m not angry at Jiang Chen’s choice but damn that was a satisfying kick for all the aloofness we’ve been getting lately!

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She runs back into class and has to drag Bai Song away before he confronts Jiang Chen. Then during lunchtime, Jing Xiao approves of the kick to Xiao Xi’s horror. HAHHAA. I love Jing Xiao so much! “From now on, I need to look at you with a different pair of eyes!” She always thought Xiao Xi is a meat bun but turns out Xiao Xi is an explosive bun when angered!

Too bad Xiao Xi is a worrying wart right now, thinking of solutions to rekindle with Jiang Chen. “Should I apologize?” Girl, I know you were wrong but I don’t want no apology! Okay, I’m becoming twelve again with all these childish feels.

Down the hall, we see an impressed Lu Yang hearing of the action and says he needs to compliment Xiao Xi for her guts. Heeheee! Xiao Xi avoids eye contact and tries her best to count the money she has collected for next week. I’m suddenly afraid…

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In class, she musters up the courage to tap Jiang Chen on the shoulder to collect money and he gives a bill of 100 and asks for change. While she does her calculation, Li Wei walks up and compliments his handwriting, so pretty that the Teacher wants him to copy the report for him. Xiao Xi slams the change on the table and walks away. Ha. What’s funnier is Bai Song’s teasing of her collecting protection fees. XD

The editing is kinda choppy here because the next moment, Xiao Xi can’t locate her funds and has to drag Jing Xiao to the bathroom before the whole world knows she lost the money. Bai Song naturally follows but Xiao Xi quickly clarifies that she’s just having a stomache.

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As the girls hees and haws in the fields about the missing money, the boys, specifically Jiang Chen and Bai Son are keen to her stressed behavior. Bai Song even locks Lu Yang in a headlock for thinking that Xiao Xi isn’t a girl. Heh. To Lu Yang, only Jing Jing’s stomache will get his attention, everyone else can go to the nurse. Cut to Bai Song faking a stomache and stumbling into Dr. Li’s office. Oh, a handsome, age-appropriate male around here. HEEE.

Smiling, the doctor calls out Bai Song’s horrible acting and Bai Song stutters to say he’s getting meds for a friend, a MALE friend. Dr. Li then clarifies that girls and boys have different reasons for stomache. Bai Song: “Then can you get me medications for girls?” LOL.

He drops the bag of medication to Xiao Xi and hurries off, which is when Jiang Chen walks up the same stairs where stressed Xiao Xi is sitting and pretending not to be stressed. He jumps the gun, “You lost the money?”

“NO, I DID NOT.”

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He rolls his eyes internally and tries to walk away but Xiao Xi grabs a hold of his leg. “I honestly lost it. Please help me.” Why does he have to help her? She will dish out favors when she’s the class president! He sits down and instructs her to remember when she last saw it…. She placed the envelope in between a notebook….collected by Teacher Liu earlier. And who has access to Teacher Liu’s office? Jiang Chen!

He evilly whispers into her ears: “You’re quite good at kicking people’s shin, why don’t you kick Teacher Liu’s?” LOL. He smirks and walks away.

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Xiao Xi tries to go to Teacher Liu’s office but the moment she sees him reprimanding another student, she loses courage and goes back to class. Then she fakes another stomache to escape class, followed by Jing Xiao, Lu Yang, and Bai Song, with Jiang Chen keeping tabs of their collective strange behavior and eventually leaving the class as well. OMG. This group cracks me up. Everyone is trying to help Xiao Xi with only Jiang Chen knowing where the money is right now. Innocent Bai Song is at the pharmacy looking for diarrhea medications while Lu Yang and Jing Xiao are sneaking into the CCTV room to confirm where the girls had been all day.

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Xiao Xi beelines for the Teacher Liu’s office and in comes Jiang Chen sitting pretty and watching her. He’s so helpful. xD He taps his fingers on the table to signal the teacher’s arrival and Xiao Xi is forced to put back her report notebook (she is so slow…). Jiang Chen has an excuse to be there but Xiao Xi declares she’s weighed down by the election and needs to vent it out. She looks to her English teacher and asks dramatically if she believes in her, and if she does, she aspires to be her class president FOREVVVAAA. Jiang Chen dies inside and chokes on her dramatic performance.

As for the other two, Lu Yang has another heart-melting moment when Jing Xiao grabs him out of sight from the guards. The close proximity with his crush has him all shy and bashful and content.

Everyone is back to class and Bai Song drops another bag of medications at Xiao Xi’s desk and she ekes out a small Thank-you. The sad look on Bai Song’s face. T___________T Someone gotta appreciate his thoughtfulness here! And it’s not Chen Xiao Xi!

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After class, Xiao Xi thinks she should play hookie and ask for money from her mother. Girl, what is the big deal? Just ask the teacher for your notebook back (using your dramatic excuse) and get the money back! Or just admit your small mistake! I’m getting frustrated here.

Jiang Chen overhears the ladies and mocks Xiao Xi, “You’re such a good class president. Very suitable to be one.”

Time to collect the money and Xiao Xi stands up and says she has lost it. I really don’t understand when she said “Lost” when she clearly misplaced it in her book report! Jiang Chen is currently at Teacher Liu’s office, passing in his copy and “accidentally” knocking over some book reports and successfully retrieving the envelope.

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He returns to class and claims that Xiao Xi left the money with him but it’s too late to backpedal now and Xiao Xi confesses her crime and says she’s not suitable to become class president, to Jiang Chen’s shock. English teacher doesn’t criticize her but repeats her election speech and adds in another statement, “It is in these three years that you kids will truly grow, it’s not a matter of completing homework and solving the last math question, it’s about transforming into a mature adult. If you do wrong, you must bravely admit those wrongs.” Having the courage to admit your wrongdoing is only the first step to having a forgiving heart.

The students then tell Chen Xiao Xi that it’s okay. Awww, teacher, I was wrong for holding a grudge at you. Forgive my 12-year old inner self.

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Xiao Xi voluntarily gives up her position. After class, she tries to return the medications to Bai Song but he tells her to keep it. She walks behind Jiang Chen and pulls at his shirt, admitting that his assessment was right, she’s not suitable to be class president. I like that he then sits on his bike to be at eye-level with her, “Actually, you make quite a good class president.” She beams and I’m like dude, stop giving her mix signals!

He bikes away and she shouts after him to wait for her. “Why should I wait? So you can kick me again?” She gives chase and he actually laughs out loud.

Today’s epilogue is a cosplaying one with Jiang Chen wearing a cape and getting rocked by the girls in class….in comes his savior….. Sailor Moon Xiao Xi in full costume and make-up. They stare at each other holding hands, then erase the board together ~

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Episode 4 RECAP:

Xiao Xi does her morning exercise by jumping from one rock to another, and falling when Jiang Chen happens by. She has one good news and one bad news to share with Jing Xiao. Good news is the arrival of Jiang Chen’s birthday and the bad news is that she doesn’t know what to get him. But she has nothing to worry about because she has a trusted advisor like Jing Xiao.

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Li Wei tries in vain to get the class attention for them to sign up for extracurricular activities because a lot of small things are happening with everyone. When Lu Yang criticizes an idol, both Jing Xiao and Xiao Xi tell him to shut up, rendering Bai Song to wonder when a girl would chase after him. Aww. Lu Yang sees a chocolate box in Jiang Chen’s desk and steals it. Xiao Xi asks for it and Jiang Chen agrees to give it to her. When she smiles and brags to Jing Xiao, Jiang Chen has the smallest smile on his face. Boy, you’re quite transparent!

Shopping for present time. Xiao Xi stutters at all the prices….turns out she only has a meager amount to start with. Jing Xiao receives an international letter from her dad with some money. They have a date later ~

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Sports teacher creams the students for their lack of interest in sports and gives them incentives to join by revealing the prizes for each sport. A pair of adidas shoes….a watch for high jumping…. For those who don’t pick a sport, they are forced to be cheerleaders! In class, Li Wei chooses Jiang Chen to do track and Xiao Xi and Jing Xiao volunteer for horseless jumping obstacles.

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I love lunch time. All the jealous glances and openly display of affections. Lu Yang thinks Xiao Xi is eating too much and Xiao Xi quickly puts the extra bowls away when Jiang Chen sits with them. Lu Yang wants to feed Jing Xiao but she doesn’t want to be fed so Xiao Xi volunteers but is rejected by him, then Bai Song tricks Lu Yang to look the other way and steals his egg in broad daylight. Then he gives his own egg to Xiao Xi, to Jiang Chen’s daggered looks.

Xiao Xi broaches the topic of Jiang Chen’s high-jump experience and he knows her line of questioning immediately. “I won’t teach you.” Hehe.

After school, Xiao Xi reads comics at the bookstore and smiles to herself, not knowing Jiang Chen is watching her, a mesmerized expression on his face. They lock eyes and Jiang Chen looks down awkwardly, only to search for her smiling face again seconds later.

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Jing Xiao openly declares a fair and square battle with Xiao Xi about the high-jumping. Heh.

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When Jiang Chen checks out some books, Xiao Xi wonders what he’s reading. He says he’s trying to understand her. She brightens at that until he shows her the book cover…. “Abnormal Psychology.” HAHAHA.

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Next day, our heroine sports a cute little pigtail and jumps for her life, slamming down obstacle after obstacle until she runs straight into Bai Song’s chest. Ha. He offers to help her and he thinks she needs to understand the basics first. She thinks he’s Jing Xiao’s spy but Bai Song adds that that role isn’t offered to him first. Cut to Lu Yang being Jing Xiao’s cheerleader while she jumps over obstacles with ease. Aww, she wants to win the watch for her dad.

Jing Xiao and Xiao Xi are so adorable with their friendly trash-talk about each other. HA. Xiao Xi approaches Jiang chen in class and sneakily hints how helpful a watch would be for him but he says he’s different, he only needs his brain. Lol. She wants him to help her with obstacle jumping and he vaguely responds that they can talk later.

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While Xiao Xi is smitten at the idea of Jiang Chen tutoring her later, she has no idea that RIGHT BEHIND HER is this hard-working boy writing tips about high-jumping from a book onto his bare skin. Bai Song, ah. YOU KILLED ME.

Xiao Xi, you blind puppy! How could you tell Bai Song to tell Jiang Chen that you’re waiting for him at the field. I can see Bai Song’s heart drop. But he does as instructed but Jiang Chen says he’s going home.

Lu Yang is the last student in class and based on his devious expression, he’s up to something. He sneaks a candy heart into Jing Xiao’s book and sees the international letter. Hmm. He joins Jing Xiao and asks about it, acting the part of Xiao Xi in earlier episodes, like a potential son-in-law. Jing Xiao doesn’t reveal her reason for joining high jumping.

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Upon learning about Jiang Chen’s dismissal, Xiao Xi sulks for a bit but Bai Song assures he’s just as good. Bai Song lists out all the steps to achieve success and Jing Xiao runs past the two with a strong scream of determination, making Xiao Xi wonder if her friend is really competing for the watch.

Later, Xiao Xi catches up to Jiang Chen outside of their home, more like he catches her dozing off on a bike. She brightly says she’s improved, no longer knocking down the obstacles and he thanks her on behalf of the obstacles. Lol.

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Bai Song gets yelled by the coach for his recent poor performance in swimming but he doesn’t reveal a single emotion to Xiao Xi later, only watching her with a smile on his smitten face. Jing Xiao gets challenged by another boy nearby and when she ignores his attempt, he yanks on her leg to stop her from running, but that sudden brake makes her fall. The friends rush over but it’s Lu Yang who fumbles around and tries to bridal-style carry Jing Xiao. He can’t…. So Bai Song pushes him out of the way. Dr. Li warns Jing Xiao not to continue with the high-jump competition…. Awww…

That night, Xiao Xi stares at her phone and decides to call Jiang Chen. She laments the fact that they haven’t gone home together in a long time and he briskly tells her to stop acting like they are living together. She follows up with a request, “Do you want to open your window and see me?”

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“Am I crazy?”

Lol.

She then talks about Jing Xiao’s injury and Lu Yang’s failed heroic moment and we see Jiang Chen laying the phone next to him as he listens to her rambling with a small smile.

Lu Yang finds Xiao Xi at the field the next day and drops the bomb about Jing Xiao’s reason for wanting to win the watch for her father, but Xiao Xi says if his words could be believed, female pigs could also fly.

Jing Xiao tries in vain to convince Dr. Li to approve her running but he’s unyielding in his decision and for her health. She jokes later with Xiao Xi that she will give way this time so Xiao Xi better win and gift the watch to Jiang Chen. Awww, I foresee what’s happening at the end.

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Lu Yang runs around the school madly, asking for favors from his previous love letter recipients. He wants someone to join the high-jump competition and win…so you can give the watch to Jing Xiao? You sweetie. He stops Jiang Chen and asks him to convince Xiao Xi to participate in Jing Xiao’s place because Jing Xiao really wants to win the watch for her dad. Little does he know, Xiao Xi is above them, listening to the conversation. Not getting an answer from Jiang Chen, Lu Yang is upset and walks off. Jiang Chen then sees Xiao Xi and she asks him whether she should help? Girl, if you have to ask him, then I’m really upset with you right now.

During class later, Lu Yang makes it known that he’s upset with Jiang Chen and Xiao Xi gets implicated as well. Bai Song bristles at him for being upset with his big boss and wonders about the reason, and Lu Yang gives one readily, “She said Jiang Chen is more handsome than me.” The others agree with Xiao Xi….hehehe.

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After school, Jiang Chen finds Xiao Xi sitting on his bike, obviously waiting for him. She wants him to teach her but he refuses and rides off. Jing Xiao follows him and tells him that Xiao Xi wants to give him the watch as a birthday present. He’s taken aback and rides off uneasily.

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Now that he knows why she’s in the competition, Jiang Chen shows up at the field the next day. I kinda wish he didn’t know the reason and decided to help her anyway. They run side-by-side as he instructs her to do this and that. Despite it all, our Xiao Xi continues to knock down the obstacle racks, much to Jiang Chen’s chagrin. He then tells her that it’s okay for her to knock the racks down since all the girls at school have the same problem, hence she needs to focus on speed instead.

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Competition day. I have no idea where our three lovable boys found those adorable headbands. Doesn’t seem like them to wear one. LOL. Lu Yang and Jing Xiao make it to the podium because they are indignant their speeches are not being read so they take over and cheer Xiao Xi up with their lame speeches, only to be pulled away by some big boys.

Jiang Chen walks up to Xiao Xi and tells her not to be nervous. Lu Yang wonders where Bai Song went….

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Xiao Xi begins running at full force and right on the sideline, a clown man runs side-by-side with her. GAHHH. BAI SONG AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. I can’t with you.

The way the clown boy pats pats an unbeknownst Xiao Xi when she finishes first place stabs me right *here*. She thanks the person behind the clown suit, unaware of who it really is.

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The friends gather around the prize and Xiao Xi presents it to Jing Xiao like a good friend, but turns out the watch is PINK. HAHHAHAHAH. Jing Xiao then remembers her date with dad at five and to everyone’s surprise, it’s Jiang Chen who suggests climbing over the school walls to escape. The friends stop the external forces while Jing Xiao climbs over the fence and lands on her butt, ripping her pants in the process. It’s Dr. Li who she comes upon. He makes sure she’s not skipping school to do bad things and even gives her new pants. Awww.

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The friends walk home later and Jiang Chen has to sarcastically adds that Xiao Xi is different from Jing Xiao, because her room to improve is boundless. HA. They split up and that’s when Jing Xiao receives a text from Lu Yang, who tells her not to be sad, when he saves up enough money, he will buy a watch for her dad. ^________^

It’s down to Jiang Chen and Xiao Xi taking the bus together and she inquires about his sudden interest in taking the bus and he says that his shoulder hurts, which prompts our girl to fuss ALLL OVER HIM, her hair in his face. He gently pushes her back to her seat and then looks curiously at the strand of hair on his sweater. Girl, you’re shedding! XD

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Today’s epilogue explains how the red mickey mouse headband made its home on Jiang Chen’s head. It was Xiao Xi hopping around him like a bunny trying to put it on. She finally pulls the pity card Im-so-nervous-about-the-competition-cant-you-play-along-with-me?

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He bent down and let her put it on.

—————————– END —————————–

Kappy: Here’s my issue with the way things played out in these episodes. 1) The writer focused so much on Xiao Xi’s love for Jiang Chen that everything else feels secondary, which they shouldn’t be. Youth is beautiful because it encompasses the highs and lows of family, friendships, and romantic developments. The writer places all her eggs into a romantic love that was built very flimsy to begin with. Up until now, I still don’t know why she harbors this deep, loyal love for Jiang Chen. But I can shut one eye for that since she’s a teenager in the highs of affections. In the same line of thought, the story should spread out the scenes to show that Xiao Xi has a life (family?) outside of pining for Jiang Chen. We need to make her an individual character that is independent of her affections for Jiang Chen.

2) By making everything else secondary, our heroine loses brownie points in both maturity, depth, and agency. The whole episode 4 about the competition could have been much more impactful and touching had it played out with the focus on frienship. When Xiao Xi asked Jiang Chen whether she should help, I flipped a lid, because whyyyyyyy whyyyyyyy did she ask him when he doesn’t even know Jing Xiao the way she does. To be honest, Jing Xiao has done so much for Xiao Xi that she’s now my favorite girl. In my heart, I know that Xiao Xi is a good kid and will definitely help her friend out but because it was played out with Lu Yang’s begging, Xiao Xi’s overhearing their conversation, and ultimately asking Jiang Chen for direction, the driven point of friendship is lost and Jiang Chen became the focal point once again.

What they should have done is let Xiao Xi be the one to find the Dad’s letter because then it adds conflict, agency, and depth to Xiao Xi as she faces the first wrench in two worlds – love and friendship. Letting Lu Yang find the letter serves no purpose for his character nor the story.

The whole time I was watching these kids, I wished they were handled by a stronger writer, like the writer behind Korean hit franchise Answer Me. You can hate the frustrating husband-hunting trope, but you can’t deny the writers’ magic in making every character their own person, from the siblings, to the neighbors, to the parents. They make mundane everyday things interesting and touching.

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  1. 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

    Up to this point in the drama, my views were similar to yours. I felt the pacing was off in some of the earlier episodes, with certain things rushed and too much focus being placed on the central romance. However, after watching up to episode 13, I can safely say that from episode 6 and on (up to 13), it has settled into a better pace and the quality has improved greatly. In particular, the main five students have been given more moments to interact and bond as a whole. I like how supportive/protective everyone is of Xiao Xi. Likewise, I like how one of the teachers noticed/acknowledged that while Xiao Xi is a weaker student in terms of grades, she has strengths in other areas (art/drawing) which should be encouraged. No doubt, in Xiao Xi’s eyes, Jiang Chen is still the most important thing in her life as she mentioned in episode 1, but there are other things demanding her attention now.

    Apparently, there’s like 7 credited writers which may explain the odd pacing of this drama thus far but as I mentioned, I feel like since episode 6, the cast has been given more to do and have settled nicely into their roles.

    • 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

      Thanks for the input JayElls! I was really frustrated with how everything played out that I don’t think I will continue watching. Lol. I really crave for that balance of life, love, and friendship in a youth drama. I think I will wait until it finishes to read the final assessment from everybody to decide.

      • 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

        Yeah I understand how you feel, initially I had high expectations for this drama and even though I somewhat enjoyed the first four episodes, I didn’t feel like the drama did enough to differentiate itself from other similar dramas. But I pushed through mainly because I had such high expectations for it in the beginning and i’m glad I did.
        However, I understand everyone’s time is precious(especially with Tribes and Empires airing now..), so it might be best to see how this one ends before fully committing to it.

        Thanks for the recaps by the way!

  2. 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

    Love to read so many different opinions. In my very business and stressful life. This drama is really sweet and relaxing to watch. I did not have any exp citation on this drama. Just thought it was another low budget webdrama. Was pleasantly surprise how the drama unfolds. The cast are newbies and they don’t have wealth of acting experienc yet they are so prefect together. I enjoy the chemistry the team has.
    As Kappy said this story lack the depth of a good youth drama. That is very true. I suspect the writers in this drama are also not high profile writers. But with high profile writers the cast will be some A list actors, I am glad more you until writers and actors are given more change to display their heir art and work thru such lower budget dramas.
    There is a place and time for growth and maturity. This drama has gather enough of interest to form a firm stepping stone for the writers and cast involved.
    Looking at the preview, I am not sure the next 8 eps is going to be fab. As the supporting cast will hav k as screen time. And the focus will be on Xiaoxi and Jiang Chen. I wonder how will it affect the pace of the drama. And will it hold our interest?

  3. 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

    I actually don’t mind the lack of depth in this drama because I find that a lot of youth dramas have this very forced depth in it. Something bad has to happen to them and then it just spins into a bunch of dark misunderstandings, separations, loss of a loved one and etc to push character growth but I actually find it very unrealistic in a way. This drama is by no means perfect though, I do think it’s a little too fluffy and doesn’t strike the right balance. But my biggest issue with this drama is actually the main girl. She’s adorable in her love for Jiang Chen but I just don’t find her very likeable otherwise. She seems very caught up in her own world without thinking about others, she comes off as a very obsessive teenage girl wrapped up in her own problems and her own world which doesn’t make for a very likeable main character.

    And something else that really bothers me is her and Wu Bo Song’s relationship. She seems so quick to accept that he was joking and doesn’t like her so that she can accept his kindness without any burden and she does accept all his kindness. Letting him spend money on her and essentially benefiting from everything he does for her without actually thinking about what is truly going on so again, going back to my point of being so wrapped up in her own little world without consideration for other people.

    But regardless, I still do find it cute and will probably continue watching.

    • 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

      i think a story with depth could be without all the angst that usual dramas dish out. It has to be the hands of good writers and i rarely see one in modern cdrama world. Lol.

      there were potentials for character growth throughout these episodes but the writer rather use those as a stepping stone to show her love for jiang chen than show her character growing/maturing. like the issue of becoming class president, what is she lacking? has she tried to improve? Nope.

      the heroine in here to me is very attention-seeking. she doesn’t want to return the same kindness she has accepted. jing xiao has done so much for her in all possible ways but the return of friendship is not there. same with bai song but he’s a lost cause already. i dont even know why he likes her, why she likes jiang chen, etc. Lol!

      Im not feeling the heroine either…sigh. Moving on to the next one!

      • 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

        I’m so craving a youth drama right now that I’m going to continue watching it regardless but the day that a well written youth drama that strikes the depth without the angst balance will be a great day.

  4. 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

    I really enjoyed watching this drama. I started it without any expectation. I adore the cast. Fresh and fun to see. Just checked their profiles and oh my, the female lead is the same age as my young bro, lol. And she’s the new Shan Chai.

    I think, i’ve changed. In the past, i stopped watching anything with boy-crazy heroine story. But i found this drama was easy and cute. Im currently on ep 12 (waiting for the engsub). I just hope they stop playing around and the boy needs to come clean about his true feeling. I heard this only has 23 episodes so it wont get draggy, right? Hopefully.

  5. 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

    I agree with the two above posters. I like that it’s an easy watch and yes it’s another girl chase boy type of youth drama, but I think what I like about this drama is the friendship between the kids. Even though the main focus is on Xiao Xi love for Jiang Chen, but the chemistry between the kids is just so sweet. And yes! To no stupid misunderstanding that drags on and on and turning into something super dark.

    I do want the drama to focus more on the friends (which you can see a little in the most recent episodes), but it’s a 22 episodes drama that only last for least than an hour per episode (if you take away the opening and ending of each episode it’s technically only like 30 minutes each episode), so if you want more development for all the characters in the drama it’s quite hard to do so. To ask it to be like Korean Reply is impossible. If I remember correctly one of the biggest complain for the Reply series is how long each episode was. Lasting about 2+ hours for some episodes.

    And I might be the odd one, but I don’t dislike Xiao Xi at all. I find her adorable in her own way. Yes, she’s a little dense but at least she has the gust to tell her crush that she likes him and is quite frank with it too. What I want the drama to stop doing is making puppy boy Wu Bo Song so miserable. We all know he has no chance so can the writer give him a girl that chases after him so he can stop making my heart hurt for him. Poor thing. I’m all for Jiang Chen and Xiao Xi from the very beginning, so there’s no way I will switch ship but man, when they make the second lead so likable too.

    Overall I really am enjoying this little drama a lot 😀 It’s not perfect but it’s such a breeze to watch.

    • 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

      They could focus on friendship by removing all the silly side stories that add nothing to the story! like xiao xi running for president….like what does that add but useless time to the plot because xiao xi ends up not growing or trying to grow to become a better student at all? i was scratching my head the whole episode…..

      reply me got longer as the series got higher ratings, in the beginning, it wasn’t as long and i enjoyed it thoroughly.

      the song boy makes my heart ache. i don’t even want to talk about him, 🙁

      • 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

        I think there was a subplot dealing with Xiao Xi and her efforts to improving her grades/ranking in the school where she went from near the bottom to 13th place overall. However, she regressed and her grades started slipping due to her being distracted/affected by her perception that Jiang Chen and Li Wei were getting closer. This kind of parallels the story her parents told Xiao Xi about a relative(?) who was too obsessive with her interest towards a boy and flunked out of university or something along those lines. So I think the writers are aware and acknowledge that Xiao Xi has a one track mind.
        As well, there was the subplot where Xiao Xi thought she could gain sympathy from Jiang Chen if her home situation mirrored Li Wei’s but quickly discovered what the consequences would be for wishing that and made her appreciate her parents more.

        Also, I don’t have a big issue with Xiao Xi being wrapped up in her world. After all, she is a teenager and not to stereotype but some teenagers do act as if the world revolves around them and every issue, little or not is the end of the world. She does acknowledge that Jiang Chen was the most important thing to her in her teen years so I guess we’ll see how she has matured (if she does..) once the story shifts to their adult years.

        Just my two cents..:-)

      • 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

        I think the moral story behind Xian Xi running for president isn’t technically to implied her growth but more of a life lesson for viewers. The main point of this subplot is not XX running for president, it’s her losing the class money. She went around trying to retreat the money and in the end JC came in to help her, but she stood her ground and admitted she lost it. I personally don’t think it’s a useless part of the story. The lesson is to take responsibility for one’s action. And what the teacher said about it’s okay to make mistake as long as you take responsibility for your action, and how the class cheer her up and tell her it’s okay is quite sweet too. I thought XX’s decision to stop running for president is also a good lesson on not to do things for one’s selfish reason. She only ran for president because of JC, obviously having no interest in being class leader for the purpose of the her fellow classmates’ good. Again my personal opinion, I do want more focus on friendship too, but I’m not mad at how the story is going so far. I’m enjoying it, and despite the lack of friendship story plot, the chemistry between the friends is good enough for me. I see and feel the closeness and that’s the most important factor for me.

        As for Reply Me series, I’ve only like the first one Reply Me 1997, and sort of like the 1988. The 1984 was such a yawn, and I couldn’t get into the lead actress. Just not a big fan of her acting. She’s pretty and I love her real life personality, but acting wise I can’t seem to finish any of her drama. What I like about 1997 is you already know for certain that the husband is going to be Yoonjae, the other two was such a headache to watch.

        And yeah, swimmer boy is just sad. But I think he’s as obsessive with XX as much as she is with JC hahaha.

  6. 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

    What I did was started only EP1 a week ago, and then this week started from EP13 onwards. Hahahaha it really saved me a lot of angst coz I kept thinking of ISWAK (I really dislike one sided chasing). Now after EP14 we get to see the guy reciprocates, which is getting better and more watchable.

  7. 14 thoughts on “A Love So Beautiful: Episode 2 – 4 RECAP “Frustration Levels Sky High.”

    I think all these subplots lack the punchline to deliver the right meaning. Feels like the writer just insert them to drag out the episodes and add more girl chases boy moments. Running for president and knowing her limited capabilities, I wish she would do something about it instead of saying oh well, im forgiven by the students and teacher. moving on. There was no way out since she said she lost the money before jiang chen could burst into the room… she can’t backtrack and said he had it all along.

    i stopped watching after episode 6 so ~~ lols.

    agreed, swimmer boy is just as obsessed, if not more. lol. but he’s so sad i have no words for him. like whyyyyyyyyy whyyy you like her in the first place?

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