Sunday, November 1, 2015

Cheer Up! Episode 8 Recap

Hi friends and future friends! I'm posting 7 & 8 back to back today if you haven't noticed. It took me some time to sort out my emotions this week. I don't think I was alone. Shall we get to it?

When we last left off, Yeon Doo got a text from her aspiring videographer friend from Real King that showed footage of her and Yeol in the convenience store, the day wormy teacher’s usb drive got stolen.  She meets with Ha Joon to show the footage, which shows the usb drive in the teacher’s bag, after the time that Yeol was in the office. Their claim so far has been that Yeol stole it when he was in the teacher’s office, but this clearly shows that Wormy had it after that.  

Ha Joon and Yeon Doo decide that they want to go show Yeol the footage right away, so they decide to sneak out of school and go visit him. Unfortunately they get caught and the teacher that catches them makes them duck walk as punishment.  Ha Joon helps support Yeon Doo’s back to make it easier for her to walk. He’s always looking after her with such a caring smile, one that he uses with few others. He just wants to take care of her. Yeon Doo sends a picture of her and Ha Joon serving their punishment to Yeol, who finds it amusing at first, but then realizes that he’s jealous that they’re spending time together.

Back in his room, Ha Joon smiles at the time he just spent with Yeon Doo and uses the cream and bandages that she gave him before on the new scrape that he acquired while they were trying to sneak out. Yeol must have felt he couldn’t take the jealousy anymore and called Yeon Doo as she’s in the laundry room on the phone with him.  They’re smiling the way you do when you’re on an all-night phone call with your crush. I don’t think his feelings are at all one sided. He teases her about how the footage alone probably, won’t be enough, but knowing that he’s not alone has encouraged him. He tells her the fact that he knew she believed in him made this ordeal manageable.

The next day at school, the Yeol we were waiting for during episode 7 shows up.  He shows the footage to the principal and wormy along with other footage and witness that accounts for him for all the time between him in the convenience store and when Wormy first realized the USB drive was missing.  The principal points out that it was still in Yeol’s bag, but then he points out that anyone could have put it there.  Yeol’s case is 100% solid and even the principal has to recognize that and she agrees to readmit Yeol to school.

Yeon Doo and Ha Joon wait anxiously to see the outcome of Yeol’s meeting with the principal.  While they’re waiting Ha Joon teases her for always being worried about other people’s problems and she teases him for always saying the opposite of what he means.  She tells him that he acts cold on the outside, but he’s really soft on the inside.  It’s adorable that she recognizes this about him.  It’s something that probably 99% of the people that know Ha Joon don’t know, but she can see it.

Teacher Yang announces in his class, that they are going to find the real culprit who took the USB drive, but that the best course of action would be to come forward now and he would be on their side and help them remedy their actions.  Wouldn’t it be nice if I could say…and then Soo Ah confessed? But alas, that’s just against her character.  

Yeol, Ha Joon , and Yeon Doo are on the roof having a little celebration for Yeol’s return.  That’s one thing these kids have definitely got down pat and something we could learn from them – they always take the time to celebrate their victories.  They are thankful for the things in life that go their way.  It’s much better to focus on the positive rather than the negative and they are a walking example of this.  Yeon Doo shakes a can of pop and says he’s going to get Yeon Doo back for the time in the first episode when she did that to him, but she uses Ha Joon as a shield.  Yeol playfully tells Ha Joon he has to choose between him or Yeon Doo.  Ha Joon responds that he’d choose Yeol of course, but Yeon Doo is so persistent.  I can’t help but wonder if this is a bit of foreshadowing, or rather if it’s just reflecting how Ha Joon feels at the moment. I guess I’m inclined to go with the second.  He’s not pursuing Yeon Doo because of Yeol at this point, because he’s choosing his friendship with Yeol.

Yeol has been welcomed back to the cheer team and while Soo Ah is ignoring him, he approaches her and says it must have been fun to earn the number one spot while he was away.  It’s as if he knows that she was the one behind it all, although he hasn’t given any indication so far that he believes this to be true. Soo Ah calls her mom to ensure that Yeol isn’t going to be able to take a make-up exam and she reassures him that he won’t be able to.

To me it just seemed obvious that Yeol should be able to retake the exam, but the principal doesn’t feel the same.  She tells him that it wouldn’t be fair to the other students since they already took the exam and therefore they can’t give him the same test and it would be an unequal grading scale if they gave him a different test. But Yeol is not okay with this and it seems that neither is Yeol’s dad who’s now ready to show Yeol that he’s on his side.  

Yeol’s dad shows up to school with a team of lawyers and reminds the principal that Yeol was falsely accused and has every right to retake the exam. The principal says that they were not going to count Yeol’s mid-term against his final grade and Yeol point out how that would be unfair to him, because what if he didn’t do great on his final exam This obviously isn’t really an issue. Yeol’s always been number one, but regardless the principal is crazy if she thinks this is a fair solution. Shouldn’t they have a process in place if something like this happens? I highly doubt that it’s the first time, which makes it seems like she’s an even worse principal. Not only is she corrupt but she also appears to be incompetent. 

Afterward, Yeol’s dad tells him that he’ll go as far as Yeol wants him to.  Yeol is surprised at the change in his dad’s attitude and responds somewhat coolly, but I think it really meant a lot to him. Yeol’s dad meets up with Yeon Doo’s mom. She encourages him about standing up for Yeol. He begs her to reconsider his proposal once more, saying he’ll be a good dad to Yeon Doo. Ouch! Things are getting complicated.  He’s offering to be a dad to Yeon Doo and yet, he’s the actual father of the boy who has feelings for her. There are too many fragile pieces for this puzzle to be put together unbroken.  Be prepared for pain, friends. It’s inevitable at this point. 

The principal tells Wormy that it’s his responsible to take care of the Yeol ordeal, since it’s his fault. But he’s also determined to not let Yeol walk all over him either.  It’s going to be interesting to see how he tries to pull this off. There’s no winning when you go up against Yeol. This has been proven time and time again. Soo Ah has asked the lady that’s helping her build her get into college, to get the CCTV footage for her.  Well, she gets the footage only to find out that another student had gotten to the security company and taken away a copy before the woman could buy the footage off of the security officer. Soo Ah has no idea who it is and begins to suspect everyone. Yeon Doo reveals to Yeol how impressive he was in getting himself admitted back to school and he tells her that she can’t be that in awe of him already.  She doesn’t seem to understand what he’s saying, but he’s pleased that she’s giving him praise.  

 After he parts from Yeon Doo, he comes across Wormy in the hallway. Wormy puts on a bold front and tells Yeol it was reasonable to accuse him and Yeol tells him that he’s going to file a petition against him to the Education Office, but he might be persuaded to change his mind if Wormy stops giving his friends unfair penalty points.  So Yeol puts this to the test right away as he orders take out and he and the guys from the cheer team eat it together in the classroom. Wormy comes in ready to pitch a fit when he sees Yeol, smiles weirdly, and then exits the room. It’s absolutely hilarious.

Yeol’s deal with Wormy seems to be benefiting him already and he’s ready to make a deal with the principal that will do the same.  He agrees to her that he won’t press any further on the retest issue if she lets Teacher Yang continue to work at the school and renews his contract. She tells him she’ll consider it.Soo Ah has found an intimidating note from whichever Sevit High student has the security footage.  The note lets Soo Ah know that they have it and they’re watching.  Dong Jae happens upon her later as she’s freaking out and she asks him why he’s always showing up and seeing the ugly side of her.  She then wonders if it was him who left the note. 

The coach thinks it a good idea that the cheer team go on a retreat to practice and to have some fun together, but they don’t think that the principal will allow it at all. However, when they go to ask permission, the principal not only agrees but says that Soo Ah’s mother will be funding the entire trip. Even Wormy is confused as to why until he realizes out loud that she wants Teacher Yang to forget that she was against him.

Dong Jae and Yeon Doo leave early with Teacher Yang to go set things up at the campsite, while Wormy comes to escort the rest of the students via bus. Wormy sees the students wearing make-up and hair gel like they’re not supposed to and is about to give them penalty points when Yeol sticks his head out to remind Wormy he’s there and Wormy recants. But both Yeol and Ha Joon are displeased to learn that Yeon Doo has already left and they grumble to each other about how much time she and Dong Jae spend together.

When they get to the campsite, the cheer team muses over who might have framed Yeol.  They can’t come to a conclusion since they agree everyone at school benefitted from him missing the test and therefore, anyone would have had the incentive. Meanwhile Soo Ah is off sitting alone and suspecting everyone else of having the footage. The students are getting ready to grill and have a bonfire that night. Soo Ah goes into her tent just as Yeon Doo is coming out of it and finds a note in her backpack that says “The bonfire is your last chance. Confess now” And so Soo Ah is highly suspicious of Yeon Doo, thinking that it’s Yeon Doo who has the footage.

Yeon Doo and Yeol share a moment while they’re stocking the cooler and talking about their dads.  Yeon Doo tells him how cool his dad was today and reminisced about how she was like her own dad in that she liked titles just like him. Yeol reveals that he and Ha Joon pretty much only had each other from the time they were kids because both had absent parents.  Yeon Doo compliments him on growing up so well in spite of it and all tells him she’s proud of him. I had a wave of emotion washing over me during this scene remembering early when Ha Joon hurt himself and horrible that must have been for Yeol. They are closer to each other than to anyone else, and not only did Yeol have to see Ha Joon hurt, but he also would have been alone if Ha Joon had died.

Teacher Yang asks Yeon Doo, Yeol, and another student to do some chores for him. He asks Yeon Doo to bring someone with her to the store to get more drinks for that night.  She agrees, but decides not to bother anyone and go alone with the maintenance man until Soo Ah pops up and says she wants to go with because she has some things to get at the store. Very, very suspect.  But Yeon Doo has no reason to object other than her being annoyed by Soo Ah’s presence.

They get to the store and Soo Ah asks if Yeon Doo looked through all the CCTV footage to clear Yeol’s name and Yeon Doo tells her she did. Then as Yeon Doo is digging for her wallet to pay for the supplies, Soo Ah see a pad of magenta post-it notes, the same kind as the note she got telling her to confess. Now she’s absolutely certain that it’s Yeon Doo who’s threatening her. 

The two go to leave with the maintenance man when Yeon Doo says she has to use the bathroom quickly. Soo Ah offers to take the supplies and Yeon Doo’s bag. Red flag right there, Yeon Doo. But she chooses to believe that Soo Ah had a moment of genuine kindness and leaves to go to the bathroom. Soo Ah gets in the truck with Yeon Doo’s things and tells the maintenance that they can go, that Yeon Doo is meeting up with the teacher. And so he leaves.  

Yeon Doo comes out of the bathroom to find them long gone and realizes what has happened.  She goes back to the store, but it has already been shut up and the owner is no longer there and no one comes no matter how much Yeon Doo bangs on the door. Soo Ah seems nervous, if not a bit guilty, about what she’s done and avoids everyone upon her return to the campsite.  

Yeol begins to get anxious when he notices that Yeon Doo is not around and begins to ask everyone if they’ve seen her. Jae Young tells her that she went to the store and when he asks Soo Ah where she was and if she had seen Yeon Doo she says that she hadn’t and that she was alone on a walk. When Ha Joon also realizes Yeon Doo is missing he starts searching like crazy.  Meanwhile, we see Yeon Doo walking alone down a dark road and she’s scared. Okay, Dong Jae seems a bit too cavalier. He’s supposed to be her best friend and joined the cheer team to protect her, but he really hasn’t been. In fact he’s not done a lot for her except bring her strawberry. That’s and all, but either he must have conceded already to her new protectors, or he needs to step up the game.

He, Yeol, and Teacher Yang go to the maintenance office to see what happened to Yeon Doo, but the maintenance guy isn’t there. Ha Joon can’t wait around anymore and sees a bike so he hops on it and take off in search of Yeon Doo.  Teacher Yang and Yeol bang on the maintenance shed and when they can’t get an answer. There’s a number for the man, but they have no cell service.

Soo Ah has gone back to her tent and open her backpack to find another note placed there since she’d been gone. She is horrified when she realizes that Yeon Doo couldn’t have been the one to do it. Yeol and Teacher Yang force their way into the maintenance shed to use the phone and when they get ahold of the guy, they find out what happened and what Soo Ah did.  Yeol finds Soo Ah immediately, gets in her face, and demands to know where Yeon Doo is. 

Ha Joon is biking down the road and he sees Yeon Doo walking in tears.  He gets off his bike and when he sees her face a look of such relief passes over him that I question whether or not he’s about to cry as well. She looks at him with such gratefulness that it makes her cry more and she staggers slowly toward him. When she reaches him she buries her face into his chest. He is filled with emotion and internal struggle is written all over his face as he remains motionless for a moment before wrapping his arms around her and holding her to him and that’s where our episode ends.

*Takes deep breath* Let’s talk about this scene because I’ll explode if I don’t.  While I had strong sympathetic feelings toward Ha Joon before this, I was still Team Yeol all the way. Yeol and Yeon Doo are so cute together, but this scene. THIS! This is chemistry! This is passion! This is so much more than just a high school crush. There was so much emotion in this scene that it ripped my heart from firmly #TeamYeol territory to right down the middle.  I can’t decide! And I don’t want to because it’s too painful.  Now Yeol hasn’t done a thing wrong. And that’s why this is so awful. He and Yeon Doo have chemistry, and stand up for each other, and she seems like she might like Yeol back. But Ha Joon is always the first to take action to protect Yeon Doo. Never ever ever have I felt like this about a drama. I mean I’ve seen almost 100 Kdramas and I’ve never felt like the lead and second male lead were equally right. I think many of you out there in Kdramaland are feeling exactly what I am, but let me hear it. Are you #TeamYeol #TeamHaJoon or #TeamTORN?  
I’m having serious anxiety about what’s going to happen next week. It took me so long to get to this post, because I couldn’t even properly process my feelings for a few days afterward.  I am loving this drama so much that I’m even more broken up about the fact that we only get 12 episodes. Fingers crossed they’ll extend it. Please drama gods, extend it!!!!

Anyway, we’ll have to wait a few more days to see what’s going to happen next. If you’re behind on episode you can catch up on DramaFever or Viki if you’re in the U.S. or you can always catch my recaps on the whole series so far on the Cheer Up! Main page below. Thanks for reading, friends! Hope you’re able to handle your emotions on this one much better than me.

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