Series: Boys Before Flowers
Left to right: Song Woo Bin, So Yi Jung, Goo Jun Pyo, Geum Jan Di, Yoon Ji HooBoys Before Flowers
is a Korean Series
created in 2009 and based on the Japanese manga, Hana Yori Dango
. The live Adaptation Distillation
used similar characters but with different names and outcomes over the course of a 25-episode arc. It is actually the fifth, most recent, and only Korean-produced adaptation
After saving a rich kid from suicide, Geum Jan Di is invited to go to Shin Hwa Academy, a kindergarten through University campus set up strictly for the rich and beautiful
. There she gets bullied by F4, a foursome of bored rich upperclassmen who rule the school. After standing up to their leader, Goo Jun Pyo, her life becomes a Love Dodecahedron
as several of the members become attracted to her.
The series contains examples of:
- Adorkable: Jun Pyo.
Yi Jung (listening to him flirt with Jan Di): "Seriously, I'm embarrassed to be around this guy."
- All of the Other Reindeer: Jan Di gets bullied quite a lot by the other schoolmates.
- Amnesiac Lover: In the last episode, thanks to Easy Amnesia
- Anger Born of Worry: Jun Pyo's preferred method of showing concern.
- Arranged Marriage: Jun Pyo's engagement to Jae Kyung.
- Attempted Rape: Averted in episode 2 when Yoon Ji Hoo shows up and saves the day.
- Bastard Boyfriend: Goo Jun Pyo. He starts all of Jan Di's misfortunes, then decides he likes her. He is also a control freak around her as well.
- Bathe Her and Bring Her to Me: In one episode, Jan Di is kidnapped, drugged, then cleaned up and brought to Jun Pyo's house.
- Batman Gambit: Lee Jae Ha's revenge plan, involving Madam Kang (Jun Pyo's mother)
- Beach Episode: Spent entirely in New Caledonia, a string of tropical islands in the South Pacific Ocean.
- The Beautiful Elite: Most of the students and specifically, F-4. Justified in that most of it is due to plastic surgery.
- Belligerent Sexual Tension: Jun Pyo and Jan Di.
- Berserk Button: Jun Pyo is not pleased when Jan Di is threatened.
- Of course a lot of her bullying was instigated by him anyway in the beginning of the series. But once he starts to warm up to her , it's better not to mess with Jan Di for your own safety.
- Beta Couple: Yi Jung and Ga Eul. They could also fit under Ensemble Darkhorse, considering the fact that there is probably more fanfiction written about them than about the two main leads.
- Big Damn Heroes: Jan Di gets saved a lot. While in Macau, Jan Di gets her wallet stolen. Jae Kyung calls attention to it, and saves her from the mugger. The members of F4 (minus Jun Pyo) save Jan Di when a kid steals her luggage, and leads her to a gang of guys who are thinking about selling her.
- Big Damn Kiss: Jan Di and Jun Pyo get several, all in slow motion.
- Big Fancy House: There are several, predominantly Jun Pyo and Ji Hoo.
- Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Oh Min Ji, Jan Di's best friend at the High School. Hinted at in that she gives Jan Di a stuffed sheep toy wearing the school uniform.
- Bland-Name Product: Jun Pyo on the cover of "Porbes" magazine.
- Break the Haughty: Jun Pyo
- Bridal Carry: When Jan Di gets bullied into unconsciousness, Jun Pyo saves the day.
- Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: Yi-Jung was the Brooding Boy to Eun-Jae's Gentle Girl. Ga-Eul later takes over Eun-Jae's role.
- Bumbling Dad: Jan Di's dad
- Calling The Old Lady Out: Both of her children do this to Madam Kang.
- The Casanova: Yi Jung
- Catch Phrase:
Jun Pyo: "If sorry was enough, then why would the law and police exist?"
Jae Kyung: "Let's go together!"
- Chairman of the Brawl: Jan Di gets a chair smashed on her shoulder during the kidnap episode. The long-term damage means the end of her swimming career.
- Chekhov's Gunman: Jae Kyung shows up many times in Macau before and after meeting Jan Di, and even runs into Jun Pyo a few times, before she becomes Jun Pyo's fiancee.
- Color-Coded Characters: Ji Hoo wears white or light colors; Jun Pyo generally wears black, and they both drive vehicles in their preferred colors.
- Cool Big Sis: Jun Hee, Jun Pyo's older sister who drives a white Ferrari and is known at school as "The Charisma Queen". She becomes like an older sister to Jan Di, as does Jae Kyung.
- Comforting Comforter: Nonromantic example when Ji Hoo does this to Jun Pyo. Jan Di and Jun Pyo do this to each other a few times.
- Dances and Balls: Several are showcased in the series, mostly set up by the school.
- Disposable FiancÚ: Jae Kyung to Jun Pyo, although the bride is the one to call off the wedding.
- Distant Finale: The final scenes of the series show us what has happened to various characters four years after the main events. For some characters, it's a case of Fast Forward To Reunion.
- Dynamic Entry: Jun Hee introduces herself by running Jun Pyo's car down, cartwheeling over, and then whaling on him with a wooden sword.
- The Dog Bites Back: Reconstructed. Lee Jae Ha wasn't the dog that Jun Pyo kicked; his older brother was. However, he did feel the effects of F4's bullying as his brother is his only family member. His Revenge scheme is pretty much this trope: quiet previous victim tries to take vengeance on unsuspecting villain.
- Driven to Suicide: Lee Jae Ha's older brother, who high-dives off a school building after being bullied by the school thanks to a "red card" from F4. Jan Di attempts to stop him, which is the reason she is invited to become a student at the school.
- Drowning My Sorrows: Jan Di accidently gets drunk, but still uses the situation to mumble her sorrow over Ji Hoo to Jun Pyo. This starts the transfer of her feelings to Jun Pyo.
- Yi Jung in the later episodes.
- Easy Amnesia: In the very last episode.
- Eiffel Tower Effect: Several important scenes are either at or within viewing distance of Namsan Tower in Seoul.
- Elaborate University High: Shin Hwa Academy
- Even Evil Has Standards: this is the Alpha Bitch's response to Min Ji's betrayal of Jan Di.
- Everyone Can See It: Pretty much everyone who sees Jan Di and Jun Pyo together ships them.
- Evil Matriarch: Jun Pyo's mother. Emotionally neglectful of both her children and vindictive toward Jan Di.
- Extreme Melee Revenge: F4 vs. Jae Ha
- Five-Man Band: A perfect example of the traditional version
- Friend Versus Lover: Jae Kyung, after finding out that Jan Di and Jun Pyo had a relationship and still like each other. She asks Jun Pyo whether he would choose love or friendship and he says he wouldn't give up on either. She eventually calls off the wedding, giving up on Jun Pyo.
- Food Slap: Ga Eul throws a drink in Yi Jung's face for being rude to her on their date. Jan Di's mother also pours a bowl of salt over the head of Madam Kang.
- I Want My Beloved to Be Fashionable: Goo Jun Pyo gives Jan Di a complete wardrobe before whisking her off to New Caledonia for a tropical weekend.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Jun Pyo
- Kiss of Life: When Jan Di rescues Jun Pyo from the pool.
- Ladykiller in Love: Yi Jung. Also his father, who claims that "once you let The One go, all the others are the same."
- Lonely Rich Kid: All the F4 members, with the exception of each other.
- Malaproper: Jun Pyo butchers every quote. Jae Kyung also qualifies, with blunders such as "A man's word is as good as a blond."
- Manic Pixie Dream Girl: Ga-Eul comes off as this in the Bodyguard CF with Yi-Jung.
- Meaningful Name: Jan Di's name is played with throughout the series because it also means "grass" or "lawn".
- Misplaced Retribution: Jae Ha's revenge plan involves kidnapping Jan Di.
- Mr. Fanservice: F4, and how! He's a Sharp-Dressed Man who gets Shirtless Scenes and Shower Scenes.
- Multiple-Choice Past: Is Woo Bin's family the mafia or involved in the construction business? Or both?
- Nosebleed: Used in this series to indicate overwork and a general shutdown of the body. It mostly occurs with Jan Di when she is working more than two jobs.
- Offscreen Teleportation: In episode 7, Jan Di on her bicycle chases Jun Pyo in the limousine, somehow arriving at the Shin Hwa residence at exactly the same time. Slightly lampshaded: he asks her how the hell she got there.
- Old Retainer: Butler Lee.
- Operation Jealousy: Yi Jung runs one for Ga Eul's benefit, to get back at her cheating boyfriend. Ji Hoo exploits this by using one, together with Distracted by the Sexy, to win a race against Jun Pyo.
- Ordinary High-School Student: Jan Di
- Paper-Thin Disguise: Don't worry Jan Di, nobody will recognize you in those coke-bottle glasses.
- Parental Abandonment
- Parental Marriage Veto
- Peer Pressure Makes You Evil: And how.
- Perpetual Poverty: Jan Di's family.
- Pet the Dog: F4's treatment of Jan Di at first.
- Piggyback Cute: Jan Di and both of her love interests multiple times: getting bullied, trapped in a blizzard, collapsing from overwork, breaking a heel on her shoe, etc.
- Plot-Based Voice Cancellation:
- A passing plane drowns out what Jun Pyo says to Jan Di regarding their relationship.
- Also, a motorcycle roars by when they are setting up a graduation party date.
- Ramen Slurp: Jan Di frequently slurps her instant noodles, to the annoyance of her boyfriend and to the amusement of the rest of F-4.
- Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Ji Hoo and, for a given degree of manly, Jun Pyo.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: Jun Pyo tries to get Jan Di kicked out of school after she kissed Ji Hoo.
- Screw the Rules, I Have Money!: Up to level WTF.
- Sharp-Dressed Man: F4 wears nice clothes
- Shipper on Deck: Jan Di's family really wants her to marry Jun Pyo. At first, it's because he's rich, but they like him a lot when they meet him.
- Shirtless Scene: F4, being Mr. Fanservice. Jun Pyo got more shirtless scenes than the other members.
- Shower Scene: F4, being Mr. Fanservice.
- Shout-Out: Ji Hoo's horse, given to him by Soo Jin, is named Rui after Hanazawa Rui who is Ji Hoo's counterpart in Hana Yori Dango
- Sleep Cute: Jan Di and Jun Pyo after getting stuck in a building overnight. Jan Di falls asleep on Ji Hoo's shoulder in another episode.
- Slut Shaming: Jan Di gets this a few times, such as when a man drugged her and took a picture of them in a hotel room together and after she cheated on Jun Pyo with Ji Hoo. The other students write bad things about on her desk and the board, attack her physically and verbally, and and set her bike on fire. Jun Pyo's mother also does it, accusing Jan Di of trying to seduce Jun Pyo.
- There Are No Adults: School children being bullied to suicide, burning bicycles and throwing trash into the school pool, kidnapping, blackmail, etc., yet no adults seem to exist on campus, and there are no consequences.
- Time Skip: A six-month skip in the middle of the series, and a four-year skip at the end.
- Train-Station Goodbye: Subverted: Ji Hoo has a ticket on the next flight out.
- Triang Relations: Type 1, Type 3, Type 12, actually just about all of them at one time or another throughout the series.
- True Companions: the F4 are each other's only friends.
- Underdressed for the Occasion: Played with. Jan Di shows up in her school uniform for the after-graduation party — but her friends think it's the perfect outfit for her.
- Will Not Be A Victim: Jan Di tries to stand up for herself, even while physically being assaulted by groups of classmates.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Jun Pyo usually, especially as a response to his treatment of Jan Di in the second half of the series. He also got this when he cheated in the horse race against Ji Hoo, injuring the horse in the process, who had to be put down as a result.
- Ji Hoo to his gradfather, for leaving him alone and and letting him think that he blamed him for his parents' deaths.
- Who Would Be Stupid Enough: Almost word for word when Jan Di wonders if Jun Pyo is still going to be waiting for her in freezing weather for hours. After her mother quotes this, she takes off running.
- Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Jun Pyo is flat-out terrified of bugs, snakes, and swimming. Ji Hoo has a driving phobia.
- Zettai Ryouiki: Geum Jan Di has Grade B in her school girl outfit in some of her shots.