Asian Drama Synopsis Fail: Who Are You? School 2015

Welcome to this week’s edition of Synopses Fails. I hope you’re enjoying this series as much as I do. This week’s topic is the popular addition to the school series Who Are You: School 2015.Yook Sung Jae, Kim So Hyun, Nam Joo Hyuk

Okay, so the synopsis found on isn’t all that bad. It’s fairly accurate in it’s simplicity, but it could be better.

Set at a prestigious private high school in Gangnam, Seoul, South Korea. Eun-Byeol is a popular student at the private high school. She goes missing and returns, but she has lost her memory. She tries to find out the truth.

Probably one of the biggest fails in what it leaves out is the synopsis in the DramaWiki:

Lee Eun Bi, a student at Tongyeong Girls High School, through being bullied and hurt at the school, takes on her twin sister’s life uncovering what exactly happened to her twin. She goes to Segang High School in Seoul, her sister’s school. Coincidentally, Eun Bi’s old bully transfers to the school. Will things work out for Eun Bi?

And the absolute worst synopsis due to how misleading it is? It’s from DramaFever:

Lee Eun Bi (Kim So Hyun), a student at Gangnam’s top high school, suddenly and mysteriously wakes up with total amnesia. However, when she discovers she was once cruelly bullied, Eun Bi becomes determined to right the wrongs of her past by transforming herself into a popular and glamorous girl. But along the way, she begins to recover fragments of her memories that slowly reveal the insidious truths of Segang High School.

Han Yi Ahn (Nam Joo Hyuk) is a student at the same school as Lee Eun Bi. In addition, he is also a skilled swimmer and adored by many of the school’s female students. He is portrayed as “cold” on the outside, but is actually a warm and romantic person. His relationship with Lee Eun Bi will be central to the story, as well as her history.

While the synopsis isn’t bad, I really think it should mention the twin part. It’s not like the twin story line was a big secret waiting to be revealed, so I think it’s safe to include that without giving a lot away. By just talking about the Eun Byul aspect, you’re missing the whole point of the plot.

The problem with DramaWiki’s synopsis is that it’s sole focus is on Eun Bi with only a brief mention of Eun Byul. This is problematic as it’s really only in passing that a twin is mentioned. The amnesia part doesn’t come up at all and, if we’re being honest, Eun Bi isn’t trying to uncover what happened to her twin (once she regained her memories she pretty much understood that somehow Eun Byul died in her place and thus no investigation in that goes on). Saying that implies that something did happen, but there’s not enough information there to give you anything to go on about what could have happened to her sister. The bullying aspect and transfer student issue is pretty spot on and good to have, though.

With DramaFever they again only mention Eun Bi. So they completely leave out the twin part of the drama, which, like I said, was no big secret from even before the drama aired. Leaving it out is misleading towards the actual point of the plot. Another thing that is terribly misleading is that they talk about Eun Bi discovering her bullying and setting out to right wrongs by becoming glamorous and popular. What the hell? Um…that…has NOTHING to do with the plot! Seriously. And it’s not Eun Bi uncovering her own memories to piece together that major incident at Segang HS, so completely divorcing Eun Byul who is a major player (although not in most of the series) is just wrong.

I get that Han Yi Ahn is an important character, but to not mention Gong Tae Kwang? What the what? I prefer Tae Kwang over Yi Ahn. Yes, our swimmer is outwardly cold, but he’s really warm and romantic when it comes to Eun Byul. That’s accurate. But what about our whipped puppy Tae Kwang who is reviled by his father and kept from his famous actress mother? What about all the things he does just to protect Eun Bi from the evil bully transfer student? Why no mention? Wae? What a horrible omission…particularly when BTOB member Yook Sung Jae’s acting was so awesome in this role.

This drama centers around two twins. The wealthy and popular Eun Byul knows she has a twin sister and sends her gifts and letters posing as her own adopted mother. Eun Bi had a relatively good life for an orphan until she stood up for a girl being bullied and became the target of the bullies herself. She has no idea that she is the youngest in a set of twins. When the bullying becomes too much and she’s forced to unfairly leave school, Eun Bi decides to take her own life. She is saved and wakes up with amnesia while her twin sister Eun Byul goes missing. She’s mistaken for Eun Byul and is taken back to Seoul where she tries to fit into a life she believes is her own. Her memories eventually return and she’s on a mission to discover the person who was stalking and threatening her sister.

Another major fail is that two synopses leave out the men in Eun Bi’s life. One she comes to love and the other becomes her best friend and protector. That’s kind of important. One reason Eun Bi becomes such great friends with Tae Kwang is simply because he was not friends with Eun Byul so she doesn’t have to lie to him all of the time and feel guilty about it.

My synopsis which still doesn’t quite capture what I really want it to?

Lee Eun Bi is a bullied orphan who tries to end her life one day. Unknowingly she is saved by her rich and popular twin sister she never knew she had. She wakes up in a hospital with amnesia and is mistaken for her missing twin. She’s taken back to Seoul where she tries to remember Go Eun Byul’s life with the help of Eun Byul’s closest friend the popular swimmer Han Yi Ahn. When she discovers her true identity she is forced with a decision to either reclaim her old life or stay in Eun Byul’s life to comfort Eun Byul’s grieving adopted mother. Eun Bi stays and becomes good friend with resident bad boy Gong Tae Kwang who falls head over heels for her. Can she discover the truth that haunted Eun Byul before her disappearance? Can she handle lying to all her new friends and staying away from her beloved younger orphans?

The best synopsis I’ve found can actually be read on Viki:

The lives of identical girls with very similar names – one who disappears without a trace and one who loses her memory – collide in unexpected ways. Lee Eun Bi (Kim So Hyun) grows up in an orphanage and deals with the relentless bullying from a group of girls at her school. Go Eun Byul (Kim So Hyun) attends Segang High School, a top-notch school in Gangnam, but disappears without a trace during a school field trip. As Eun Bi tries to escape from her miserable life and ends up in the hospital with no memories of her past, Eun Byul’s mother (Jeon Mi Seon) thinks Eun Bi is her lost daughter and takes her back to live her life as Eun Byul. As Eun Bi tries to recover her lost memories, can she discover what happened to the real Eun Byul and why she looks so much like the missing girl?

I have only two more episodes to finish. Why is it the best guy friend usually always gets the shaft? Poor Tae Kwang does everything he can for Eun Bi and while she does care for him and helps in at certain times, she never expresses half the concern an attention that he does to her. And he really is the best choice over the slightly obsessed Yi Ahn.

One comment

  • Oh my. I hadn’t read all those synopses, so I had no idea such terribly inaccurate synopses were out there, conspiring to mislead the innocent drama fan! XD I must agree that the viki one is the most helpful, without being too spoilery. I think that’s the difficult balance, when writing a synopsis. You can be extremely accurate but take all the fun away by being spoilery, or you can be so vague that even though you’re not giving away anything, you’re also not TELLING anyone anything useful either! Nice work on this series, btw, NeeNee! These are fun to read 🙂

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