I feel more and more like Record of Youth will be a drama worth slow watching AND writing reams of analysis on. There is structure and depth to the character foundations and growth, and a lot of really insightful takes on K-ent and class issues in South Korea. I’m sad I don’t have that time anymore, I miss those 2010-2015 days when I wrote full recaps on the day an episode aired and still had time for my full time day job and kid rearing. I wasn’t sleeping a lot then but I had energy and passion and that’s what I feel radiating from Hye Joon and Jung Ah, such clear as spring water and and just as refreshing go-getting conviction. They aren’t naive either, but they choose to focus on the positive things they can control and finding each other feels like the gods rewarding them in a way outside of each’s expectation while still making their primary dreams a slog. Episode 5 retained the measured pace of the drama, which is either something you like or don’t (I do!) and is once against elevated to greater heights thanks to the charisma of male lead Park Bo Gum. He wasn’t the best thing about any of his previous dramas but he is and remains that here.