Hi everyone!! I recently finished watching Itaewon Class series on Netflix. Loved it. So after finishing the series I went through social media for its reviews & reactions & came to know that many people did not like PSRY & JYS pairing. Many people were shipping PSRY & OSA. I totally loved PSRY-JYS pairing. Here are my thoughts about the so called love triangle.
For me PSRY & OSA pairing was dead in the water in epi 2 itself. They had cute moments in epi 1 but after the accident of PSRY father, this relationship also died romantically at least. After this tragic incident, they had no significant moments which made me believe that they are in love in the first place. OSA was not under any pressure to accept help from Jangga Co. Mr. Park had already paid for her college tuition. I know other expenses are there but her initial plan might have anyways been working part time to pay for her expenses. Chairman Jang did not pressurise her in anyway for accepting scholarship or job at Jangga Co. She was no threat to him at any point in the show. But she still accepted it & led a comfortable life working at Jangga even after she knew how they had killed Mr. Park & how PSRY had to go to jail because of them. His entire life was ruined by that family. She still continued to work for them.
Life gave her many chances to become a part of PSRY's life as a romantic partner. But she never took that risk. She was content thinking that PSRY continued to “ like” her even though she was actively working with his father’s murderers.
I never thought that PSRY was in love with OSA at any point in the story. He had a first crush on her & after he lost his father, he designated OSA as his first love & kept her in that box. She represented hope of a better future for him after he avenges his father. But he was so indifferent to her. He was so emotionally removed from her that her actions against him didn’t even evoke a strong response in him. Being a good person is all well & good, but he showed more passion in his dislike for the Jang family than he ever showed in his so called love for OSA. He mentions that he likes her a few times in the series but never actively pursues her. He never even discusses his personal issues & emotions with her except the same old I like you thing. What she knew about him was what had happened in the earlier part of their acquaintance. Their relationship was stagnant after that. Their relationship dynamics never changed. So I never really bought into his love for OSA. So this leg of the love triangle never had any growth after the initial foundation & remained at the same state.
JYS came into PSRY's life like a storm- all thundering & extreme. She was a functioning, high intelligence girl with sociopathic tendencies. She could never be empathetic or sympathetic towards others. She reminded me a lot about BBC Sherlock who was also a high functioning intelligent human with no empathy & sympathy. He also said whatever he deduced about a person without thinking about their feelings.
JYS is the same. She uses her intelligence to be an influencer & earns a living for herself while still being in school. She is aware of her own genius as well as faults & it never mattered to her how her truth bombs hurt another person. Her 1st interaction with PSRY didn’t leave an impression on her. But her 2nd interaction with him at the police station where she saw him lose his cool against the police & Jang Guen Won left an impression. She became intrigued by him. Then later on the more she spent time with him the more she liked him & fell in love with him.
After knowing about his past & goals, she actively started working with him to achieve his goals. She did not expect anything in return from him at that point. She had a year plan to make him fall in love with her. She was in love with him & wanted to do everything in her power to bring him success. Even after he rejected her love for him, she didn’t flounce off in hurt & rage. She continued working besides him & still showed her affections to him. She made him feel loved even if didn’t reciprocate her feelings.
JSY antis complain that she was transphobic, racist & a stalker. I do not believe the show depicted her actions in such a light. It is just that they have misinterpreted what was shown onscreen.
Transphobic- She did not care about Hyun Hi’s sexuality personally. But let’s look at the sequence of events for her advise for firing Hyun Hi. Hyun Hi was not making food as per the standards expected from her. JYS recognised this as an issue for DanBam's growth. She hinted about the food being not up to the mark to Hyun hi as well. On top of that she discovered Hyun Hi was a transgender which would impact the pub's popularity as the society in which they live was not tolerant against trans people.
She personally had no issue with it one way or another but it would affect the business if the patrons had come to know because her cooking was not the reason people were coming to the pub. If she was a great cook, then it wouldn’t affect that she was a transgender. But because it was not, her being a transgender was another negative point for the pub’s success. That is why her natural conclusion was to fire Hyun Hi. Also the point that she asked Hyun Hi that why did she not go to a transgender club instead of the normal one was because Hyun Hi herself confidently came out & said she was a transgender. She didn’t try to hide it. So JYS made this catty remark to her not because she was transphobic but just for needling her. Hyun hi also gave her back with her reply that she can go to any club that she wishes. Both she & MHY are similar in the way they interact with people to some extent. They can dish it as well as take it. SK had even made this observation about them. This was also one such interaction between JYS & MHY.
JYS did not show any discrimination against her. So I don’t know where people got the idea that she was transphobic.
Racist- Kim Toni did not look like a Korean from his appearance. He genuinely looked like an African national because he was in fact biracial. His nationality was also from Guinea. Though his father was Korean, Kim Toni was not automatically registered as Korean citizen since he was born in Guinea. His citizenship was not Korean even though biologically he was Korean. Hence when the club security refused to let him enter the club, racially discriminating against him, JYS suggested going to another club instead of fighting with the racist establishment because they could not prove that he was Korean national. She was not being racist. If she was racist, she wouldn’t have hired him at DanBam in the first place itself. So this racist moniker for her is untrue.
Stalkery/Creepy/ Pushy love for PSRY- JYS has a very selfish personality when it comes to her loved ones. Since she does not emotionally connect to people in general, the people with whom she does connect are very important to her. She decided to quit going to university to work besides PSRY because she liked him. She vowed to herself to help him succeed in his life. She believed that she could bring both success & love in his life. She got jealous of OSA as she was introduced to her as love interest of PSRY. But she also knows that they are not together in a relationship. So why should she give up her love for a love relationship that is not even realised. She did not put any obstacles between them & did not do any scheming against them. She even cleared their misunderstanding wrt the pub being reported to police. She just loved him.
JYS was pushy with him because like a normal person who has a crush on a person she also wanted to know more about him. After learning his past she cried for all the pain he has suffered & worked with him actively to bring down Jangga Co. She got rejected by him but she didn’t turn vengeful against him. She continued to love him & express her love to him constantly so that he knows that he is loved. Some people interpreted this as sexual harassment. I seriously don’t understand this pov as she herself has told PSRY many times that if he is so bothered by her love , he can ask her to leave anytime. She would have seriously left him alone if he had asked her seriously. So I don’t know why people make this an issue against her.
PSRY was not a kid. He was a grown intelligent adult who though idealistic was not weak or a pushover. He was quite ruthless at many points in the story- his insistence that detective should turn himself in so that his father’s accident case be investigated even if it caused his daughter hurt was one such instance. Him pointing out to Director Kang that only she had truly lost everything when their plan to dismiss Chairman Jang from the office failed was another. He continued with his plan to take down Chairman Jang even though he knew that JGS whom he considered as a brother was not onboard with it. His refusal to give up his revenge plan when OSA pleaded with him to do so. Other instances are also their. If he believed that someone has harmed him or his people he was ready to take action against them. He was even ready to fire JYS when she asked him to fire Jang Guen Soo so that they can stay in the same location & this was at a point in his life when he actually needed her intelligence & expertise to succeed in business. Whether he would have really accepted her leaving DanBam if she didn't come back willingly is another matter.
So if he had such an issue against JYS expressing her love to him even after his refusal, he could have fired her since he was already in a successful position in his business life. He had no reason to tolerate her so called harassment. But he didn’t because he didn’t actually mind it even if he said so. He subconsciously liked it. The last person who had expressed love for him was his dad. After his death his life was utterly devoid of love & happiness. It was bitter. He was craving for love & sweetness in his life. That is why he even named his pub as DanBam which he had revealed to JSY in their 3rd meeting itself. He was always connected to her on an emotional level since his outburst at the police station. He instinctively trusted her.
Though people saw JYS constantly pushing him to open about himself as some pushy obsessive move by her, PSRY opened up to her on his own. If he did not want to be open with her, he would have refused her. Also he had expectations from her that when she made a mistake he scolded her openly. With others he was cool & calm but with her he was all fire in the incident when he asked her to leave after she advised him to fires Jang Guen Soo. Even OSA noticed that he was very emotional in his interactions with JYS. She had not seen such passion from him in her own interactions even after almost a decade.
I honestly think he was also very selfish when it came to JYS. He had come to know from JGS that she was working at the pub after ditching going to university but he still didn’t advise her against it. He said to her because he needs her for his business but I think he also needed her in his life emotionally. Her concern for his health due to lack of sleep, working hard to make the pub a success, believing in him & his plans so much that she bet her life on it did impact him emotionally in a positive way. It did matter to him that she not leave him.
When JGW had come to their pub to make a job offer to JSY & Seung koi had expressed his worry about it, the camera had panned to PSRY who was drying the dishes. For a moment his hands had stopped but then he once again resumed. He was definitely worried on a personal level about her leaving seeing flashbacks wherein she had made remarks regarding quitting, that they are not a match from A to Z swirling in his mind. When he had seen her being manhandled by JGW, he had punched him & worried more about her injuries than what she was saying. He was about to pummel JGW but stopped at her one command.
Though he was affectionate with his people but I think he was extra affectionate with JYS. He used to praise her extensively if she did some good work, used to pat her hair, even allowed her to sleep in lap & then himself kept her head on his shoulder to sleep in the bus, side hugged her occasionally. All their interactions were emotionally charged that even Kim Toni had asked if anything was going on between them after observing them for hardly 2 occasions. JGS also asked his feelings for her a few times to get clarity. A person knows if someone else is having romantic intentions for their object of affection instinctively. I saw this as the same.
PSRY had immense trust in her that is why he went ahead with the investor plan even if he wanted to initially open other pub’s one by one. I think the audience had come to know enough about him by that time that he always did what he wanted to in his own time without paying heed to another person’s advise. Once he had made his decision he stuck to it. But he changed his decision for her. Even when it was proven to be a wrong decision later on, he didn’t allow JYS to accept the entire blame. He in fact allowed her to become more close to him on a personal level after they were able to handle the investor crisis even though he had known about her feelings for him & he had rejected her.
PSRY was subconsciously close to her but passed off his gestures with her as those of a friend or business partner. He was oblivious not only to her feelings towards him but of his own self as well. So when she confessed her love for him he was blindsided. He did not go after her himself when in any other case he might have. He went after urging from Hyun Hi. He tried giving her explanation for his refusal- age, business, his so called love OSA, even JGS love for her. But she cut to the chase & asked him point blank whether he even sees a possibility that he might ever reciprocate her feelings, he tells her No & asks her not to like him. He did not say that he does not like her.
Up until that time he consciously never thought of her in romantic light. He had boxed OSA as his true love but was not in a relationship with her. He planned that he would be with her after avenging his father & JYS would be with JGS like a neat package. But this incident shook his dreams foundation. He became aware of JYS in a romantic light. He stopped his affectionate gestures like patting her hair. But you could clearly see a different kind of warmth in his gaze for her.
He continued his denial & worked hard to achieve his goals. He allowed JYS to be by his side even though he could have asked her to quit since he said he didn’t like her expressing her love for him. But he was never going to. He has always been selfish with regards to her even though he was selfless with others. He was just denying his feelings for her after 4-6 years of working together because he truly didn’t think that she would ever be lost to him. Even JGS sarcastically pointed out to him that why was he being selfish & not allowing her to leave him because his business needs her. Even when he knows that his denial hurts her. He was coming to realisation of his feelings for her slowly. That is why he couldn’t get angry at her & ask her to leave, couldn’t give a straight answer when OSA asked him whether he still liked her. Also please note that he knows her drawer password but she also knows his computer password when she was shopping from his computer. Their relationship has developed from strength to strength in the duration since they work together but his relationship with OSA was not only stagnant but actually more distanced after so many years. No wonder he realised his feelings for her when the answer to every love test question was her. So though his realisation was abrupt it was not unanticipated.
Also it was not like he had only JYS & OSA as romantic options. He was a good looking, fit, intelligent & rich businessman. He wouldn’t have any shortage of women if he wanted to date. But he had no desire to do so because he was already emotionally involved with JYS & busy in his revenge plans. But then he had no problem in going down on his knees in front of Chairman Jang when JYS's life was on the line because she was that important to him.
The show could have delayed or scrapped the kidnapping plot but it is what it is. But when he talked to his father in limbo he realised that though his life has been a burden, full of hardships but he still wants to live it because JYS makes it worth it for him. He wanted sweetness in his life but he had not realised that she had already dissolved sweetness in his life by loving him through all the obstacles.
So therefore they are my OTP of the show & I was happy that they got their happy ending together.
Now if the OSA fans are going to defend her by saying that oh she was working on her own plan for taking down Jangga then I would say it was too little too late. By the time she did anything against him PSRY did not consider Chairman Jang as a worthy opponent & he would still be facing criminal charges for hiding his criminal son who had abducted JYS & JGS. It was anyways not going to be swept under the rug as even IC Co were very powerful by then.
So yes, she did help in bringing down Chairman Jang but her revenge also came from a selfish place. She knew that PSRY had dedicated his life to avenge his father’s death & his goal was also same as hers. Still she continued working alone in her own revenge. Where she could have worked together with him, she worked alone when there was no need for her to do so. If that was her plan all along then she should have at least informed just PSRY about it & helped him from within Jangga.
I don’t even know if she would have actually resigned in the 1st place if Chairman Jang had not told her how he saw her as a despicable person not even worth as a human to him. He had tamed her like the livestock that he saw her as. Many people interpreted this scene as them having some father- daughter bond but I didn't think so. He was not even loving to his own sons, so him having any care for OSA is a far-fetched idea. But I do think OSA at least had conflicting feelings regarding his position in her life as a mentor & object of her hate.I think only after that interaction she made the decision to be a whistle blower. God knows how long she would have wallowed in her own self pity, thinking of herself as a martyr had that conversation & the kidnapping incident had happened.
So though I am happy that she got her own revenge & freed herself from Jangga company, I don’t think she would have done it if she has not realised how pathetic she was behaving from Chairman Jang'a pov. So she definitely was not the right person for PSRY. She was too selfish & distant emotionally to ever be the support & sweetness that he was craving for in his life.
Wow. That was a long post. But I had to get my feelings out somehow. Please share your comments if you agree or disagree with me.