20th Century Boy and Girl Title: 20세기 소년소녀 / 20th Century Boy and Girl Also known as: Twentieth Century Boy and Girl / Boy and Girl From the 20th Century Formerly known as: No Sex in the City Chinese Title: 20世紀少男少女 Genre: Romance, Comedy Episodes: 32 (35 minutes/episode) Broadcast network: MBC Broadcast period: 2017-Sep-25 to 2017-Nov-14 Air time: Mondays & …Read More »
20th Century Boy and Girl Episode 1 Recap
If you’re looking for something fizzy and fun, with a sweet romance and a lot of laughs, then you’ve come to the right place! 20th Century Boy and Girl is an easy watch, with characters you’ll love instantly and just enough conflict to hook you in and keep you interested. This show is pure entertainment, which is just what I’ve been needing to get me out of my drama slump—so who wants to join me?
EPISODE 1: “The boy we liked back then”
In 1991, a pair of mothers watch dramas as their 9-year-old children lay nearby in their pajamas. The little boy and girl make faces at each other, poking and fighting like kids do. A few years later, in 1997, the little girl is now a teenager. It’s her turn to watch dramas with her two best friends, and they agree that the 26-year-old characters in the show are waaay too old to get married.
By 2005, the girl, SA JIN-JIN (Han Ye-seul), is 23 years old, and she and her friends are still watching dramas—today it’s My Name Is Kim Sam-soon), particularly the scene in which Sam-soon gets called a spinster at thirty. Jin-jin narrates that at that age, they thought it was a sin to be thirty and unmarried.
But time passes, and the three are 35 years old now, and all of them still single. They toss around questions like “Park Bo-gum or Song Joong-ki?” and argue about which celebrity they’d prefer.
HAN AH-REUM (Ryu Hyun-kyung) asserts that the sexiest part of a man is a sinewy forearm, describing a hard-working, responsible man rolling up his sleeves. Then she starts to chide Jin-jin and their third friend, JANG YOUNG-SHIM (Lee Sang-hee), for “saving” their precious bodies, putting on airs of someone much more experienced and worldly. The friends just roll their eyes, used to Ah-reum’s ramblings.
Jin-jin brings the conversation back to the game, where the final round contenders are Gong Yoo (cue excited squeals) and… Anthony. Ah-reum and Young-shim sigh heavily as Jin-jin does an enthusiastic I Love Anthony dance on her bed. Hee, I love these three already.
The camera pans across Jin-jin’s dresser, which is crammed with photos of her life as a successful idol, model, and actress. She narrates that she’s an unmarried woman over 30, and while she no longer believes that marriage is a happy ending, people still treat her as a fool and send her hurtful, disapproving looks. But she concludes: “I won’t blame myself. Today was good, and I look forward to tomorrow.”
The last picture we see is of the three girlfriends back in high school, as Jin-jin says that she hopes that whoever is listening to her story feels the same way. There seems to be a fourth person in the picture, but they’re covered by a picture frame so that all we can see is their hand.
Back in 1997, a boy in blue-striped sneakers steps up to the school photo case, stopping in front of a large picture of Jin-jin. We don’t see his face, and he stands looking at Jin-jin for a long time.
In the present, the celebrity that Jin-jin was squealing over, ANTHONY (Lee Sang-woo), goes on a radio show, and at home, Jin-jin watches the video of the interview like it’s her job. Her surly little brother MIN-HO (Shin Won-ho) sneers at her, calling her ugly and snapping that her manager wants to see her.
Jin-jin takes her time getting ready, taking great care with her clothes, makeup, and accessories before stepping out of her room.
Meanwhile, Jin-jin’s mom (Kim Mi-kyung) goes to the department store with Ah-reum’s mom, and they both beam proudly at a large ad featuring Jin-jin as the spokesmodel. Ah-reum’s mom mentions to a salesgirl how pretty Jin-jin is, and the girl says that she often comes shopping with her mother.
Jin-jin’s mom is excited to be part of the gossip, until the salesgirl says that reportedly, Jin-jin’s mother looks nothing like her daughter, and in fact is mean-looking. Mom barks angrily that Jin-jin’s mother is REALLY NICE OKAY, pfft.
Jin-jin’s parents run a little restaurant, and her dad seems to be a sweet, soft-spoken man. But when a customer complains about a poster featuring Jin-jin has an apron strategically draped across her cleavage, Dad bellows, “Leave it alone!” HAHA.
On her way to a makeup CF shoot, Jin-jin listens to the same radio show again, where the members of idol group Golden Child fanboy over Jin-jin as their ideal type. Meanwhile, Jin-jin’s manager fields calls from reporters, all of whom want to know who Jin-jin will sign with now that her contract is ending.
Jin-jin’s stylist, MI-DAL, complains about the fact that there will be two models in the ad they’re filming today. The other model, a younger actress named JUNG DA-YOUNG (cameo by Han Sun-hwa) whines to her manager that she wants a big van like Jin-jin’s.
Da-young waits until Jin-jin gets to the studio before making a strategically late entrance, and in front of everyone she blames her manager. Jin-jin isn’t impressed, and things get chilly when both ladies turn out to be wearing the same dress.
The director asks Da-young to change, but she protests, pointing out how the dress emphasizes her fantastic… collarbones. Jin-jin interrupts her wheedling to say in an ultra-professional voice that they should hurry and do the shoot, so Da-young changes and they get the job done.
Afterward, Da-young makes a spectacle of herself, bullying her staff and acting like a complete diva. Jin-jin beckons her over and leans way over, right in Da-young’s face, and tells her about a star who was cursed for acting like a brat. She specifies that she means an actual star, suggesting that Da-young read up on Cassiopeia (a queen who was cursed by Poseidon to be an upside-down constellation, after boasting that she was more beautiful than Poseidon’s sea nymphs).
We rejoin Jin-jin’s best friends: Ah-reum works as an airline attendant, and Young-shim is a lawyer who’s job-hunting. The two talk on the phone about Jin-jin’s twenty-year obsession with Anthony. They can’t understand it, especially since Jin-jin is a much bigger star than Anthony, and she knows she’s not even his ideal type.
On the bus to the airport, Ah-reum is surprised when a handsome young man hands her her bag and introduces himself as Dong-hoon, a co-pilot. He reminds her of a flight they shared a month ago, and she remembers catching him staring at her and thinking he was cute. Dong-hoon mentions that they’re on the same flight today as well.
Jin-jin goes to see her agency head, CEO Jang, who asks her to travel to Hong Kong to film a variety show as a favor for an exec who helped her debut. She balks, not having done a variety show in ten years, but CEO Jang talks it up. He adds that she can stay in Hong Kong an extra night and relax, and she reluctantly agrees.
Jin-jin gets a text from yet another agency wanting to sign her, though she hides it, so CEO Jang thinks it’s from a guy. He tells her to let him know if she’s dating so he can do damage control. He tsk-tsks over the for the way she spoke to Da-young, who claims that Jin-jin made her cry, and clucks that that’s the kind of griping old people do.
After her flight, Ah-reum is surprised again when cute co-pilot Dong-hoon asks for her phone number and suggests they have a beer together sometime. He even gives her a gift of a box of chocolates, and later in their hotel room, her roommate teases her about the chemistry between her and Dong-hoon.
When they arrive back in Seoul, they exchange long looks as they part ways on the bus. Jin-jin pulls up to pick up her friend, who yells excitedly, “Hey, I’m getting married!” LOL.
Jin-jin drives Ah-reum to a doctor’s appointment, where she’s more interested in her doctor’s advanced pregnancy than her own uterine fibroids. The doctor assures Ah-reum that if she has surgery to remove the fibroids, she can still have children safely. Though Ah-reum makes a face like that’s not an appealing thought, she’s very proud to report that she’s not a virgin, hee.
Jin-jin and her friends gather for fried chicken and girl talk, and Ah-reum shares about her newest co-pilot crush. Jin-jin doesn’t think Dong-hoon is that into Ah-reum since he hasn’t made a definite move, but Ah-reum argues that it’s just the age difference holding him back (he’s seven years younger).
When her friends ask what Dong-hoon looks like, Ah-reum compares him to a boy they went to school with named Jung Woo-sung, who was very handsome but also very arrogant. She and Jin-jin argue about which one of them Woo-sung liked, and Young-shim recalls a time when they almost broke up their friendship over a boy.
The girls had been in high school, marking their student numbers on photos. One photo had caught their attention—it showed a boy walking out of the frame, and all you can see is one blue-striped tennis shoe. A sudden tension between them led to a pact that they would never fight over men and be friends forever.
Soon it’s time for Jin-jin to travel to Hong Kong, and she and her team make their way through a gauntlet of reporters at the airport. At one point her stylist Mi-dal stops to tie her shoe and puts down her phone, accidentally leaving it behind.
Mi-dal whines about her phone when they get to Hong Kong that night as they ready for bed. She’s prepared to sleep on the floor, but Jin-jin invites her to share the huge bed, so Mi-dal happily giggles and cuddles Jin-jin as she admires the beautiful view of the city.
The next day, we follow a man on his way to work at a company called National Chemical, where he conducts business in fluent English. The name on his office door tells us that this is GONG JI-WON (Kim Ji-suk), and he’s an analyst and investment specialist. Before long his assistant fetches him for an important meeting, and on the way, they discuss Ji-won’s upcoming return to Korea.
At the hotel where his meeting is to take place, Ji-won spots Jin-jin descending the staircase, looking gorgeous on her way to record her show. He stops dead in his tracks and stares, mesmerized and perhaps with recognition, as Jin-jin smiles and chats with the people prepping her for the show.