In A Good Way 我的自由年代 Ep7 Review

Sorry guys! Since I’m still out of town and my internet speed is very unstable, the recap is a lot less detailed than the previous episode but I’ve wrote more commentaries for this episode. Pardon me for any grammar mistakes as I’ve no chance to read through it yet…

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WARNING: Beware of spoilers, read at your own risk.

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Be prepared for a roller-coaster ride of emotions in this episode as the initial frustrations I had in the beginning turned out to be soooo satisfying at the end. A prime example of how a good resolution can fully compensate the frustrations felt from the conflicts. This may be the most thoughtfully written episode so far.

The childhood friends, Jia-En and Ren-Wei are definitely the highlight of this episode. Ren-Wei continues to be awesome and I can’t help but to root for him to get Bai-Xue. At this point, I can’t imagine him feeling anything other than sibling love towards Jia-En so I think that there may be slight changes in SETTV’s character description for Ren-Wei. I really don’t know how the writers are gonna make a huge turnaround and make him have any romantic feelings for Jia-En. But for now, I’ll just cast doubts aside and enjoy anything that is being served on my plate. They’ve came this far in growing up and I feel very proud of them like a mother, Heh!

The show portrayed youthful raw emotions so thoughtfully. As a bystander, I felt a bit emotional looking at the growing friendship of these buddies, it’s those little tiny moments and small chats that easily gets me invested. The slice-of-life vibe of the show is really working on full force during the New Year celebration event.

The love interests also find themselves interlaced through the misunderstanding created by Liu-Chuan himself. He really struggled with conflicted feelings

This is youth, their era of freedom!

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3631,Who Are You?

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Alarmed that Jia-En know about the politics background 3631 has, Liu-Chuan rejects Jia-En’s request to find 3631 as he says that being a site admin, he has to protect the privacy of the members. He notes the disappointment in her face as she rides away with her bicycle.

Liu-Chuan is fixated on the old post he written as 3631 as it was the reason Jia-En finds out that one of 3631’s family member is a member of parliament. A-Qing who sees him struggling advise him to disappear and as time goes by, Jia-En will forget about it. However, he reminds Liu-Chuan that the longer he drags on with this lie, the bigger the hurt Jia-En will feel after finding out

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Liu-Chuan and Ri-Qi meets Jia-En, Xiao-Wei and Tracy who are having lunch together. They chat for a while as Tracy reveals that the girls are talking about 3631. She also teases Jia-En for having a crush on 3631 and 3631 must be ugly as he don’t dare to appear in front of Jia-En. Jia-En denies and say that they’re merely friends who are able to understand each other. Ri-Qi notes that they must share a deep platonic relationship and they like each other for the inner qualities instead of just looks. As they are chatting, Jia-En mentions about 3631’s family political background, making Liu-Chuan becoming uncomfortable and he quickly hurries Ri-Qi to leave the girls alone.

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Ren-Wei and Bai-Xue hangs out in a bookstore together. Ren Wei notices her good mood and thinks of Christmas dance party when she was in a bad mood, he asks about how is she feeling right now and is concern about her. Sensing that Bai-Xue don’t want to talk about it, he quickly changes the topic. They talk about books but Ren-Wei ends up embarrasing himself as he mistakes a foreign author as a local author.

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Liu-Chuan meets with his mom who he haven’t meet for 3 years as she traveled around the world. He asks whether her recent trip in Sahara is fun and asks how is she. His mom reminds him that there’s only a little bit more than a year left to the promise with his dad to grant him freedom in college and she asks about his plans after graduation. He says he haven’t think of that yet and will tell her when he thinks of something. Her mom advise him to make good use of the opportunity and not end up like her, being a person with no freedom. He asks why is she back in Taiwan and she replies that she have to cooperate with his dad to shoot a commercial for the recent Typhoon.

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Jia-En encounters Auntie Mary who is struggling with herself for whether or not to go and meet her penpal. She tells her the reason why she is so conflicted is because her penpal wrote that “he will wait for her until she shows up”. Ren-Wei join in their talks and confides that he’s feeling frustrated from the earlier embarrassment in front of Bai-Xue. He asks Jia-En whether Bai-Xue have someone she likes but Jia-En have no clue about it. Auntie Mary recommends him to ask her out and meet on a festive day as the atmosphere will definitely be great. They also advise him to tell her that “he will wait for her until she shows up” .

Making use of the great idea she gets from Auntie Mary, Jia-En wrote a message to 3631, asking him to come and meet her on the 31st at the place where they planned to meet during the Christmas party and “she will wait for him until he shows up”. Liu-Chuan who saw the message feels very conflicted about it.

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The Treasure Hunter club members are discussing about the upcoming New Year celebration event and A-Qing suggests to set up tents and campfires on the field. His idea is accepted by everyone. Jia-En have to leave earlier for her class, as she is leaving the clubroom, A-Qing tells her to bring Tracy and Xiao-Wei along for the event. Jia-En agrees and also informs him that she will be late on that day as she will be meeting a friend. Liu-Chuan who overhears immediately ask whether she can change the meeting to another day as they will be setting up the tent earlier.

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On the day of New Year celebration event, Jia-En waits for 3631 from day to night and finally, Ri-Qi come to meet her and says that he is 3631. It turns out that Liu-Chuan have asked Ri-Qi for help to pretend as 3631 as he doesn’t want her to know about his family political background. Liu-Chuan watch them from afar, feeling conflicted. Get a taste of your own medicine, Liu-Chuan!

Jia-En and Ri-Qi returns the the field and gather with the Treasure Hunting Club members. As the members find out that 3631 is Ri-Qi, they start teasing them, saying that they must be dating and Ri-Qi likes Jia-En. Xiao-Wei starts to feel uncomfortable and her mood turns sour from this turn out of event.

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They start playing the truth or dare game and the teasing of Jia-En and Ri-Qi as a couple escalates as Ri-Qi has to do a dare with Jia-En. At this, Xiao-Wei and Liu-Chuan looks uncomfortable and Liu-Chuan impatiently ask them to proceed to the next game as the dare game ended. Ren-Wei and Jia-En has to do the dare game as they loses the truth game, all of them had a lot of fun playing the game.

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It is Bai-Xue’s turn and she got a question whether the person she likes is present. As she replies yes, everyone insists on her telling them who is the person. Clearly looking uncomfortable from the question, Ren-Wei deflect the question by joking that he is the person she likes.

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Liu-Chuan gets a question about what is the recent lie he told and he chooses to do the dare game instead, he has to do 100 push-ups with the tallest girl (Jia-En) sitting on his back.

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The friends count-down to New Year and everyone jump across the word “1996” formed by many candles as the count-down ended. They play the card game together in the tent but end up destroying the tent as the game become heated. Since the tent is destroyed, they all decided to sleep outside using sleeping bags while looking at the starry sky.

The friends start chatting as A-Qing asks Jia-En whether she likes Taipei and asks the reason why she and Ren-Wei come so far to Taipei from their hometown, Ping Dong. Ren-Wei replies that it’s for his own freedom and Jia-En admits that at first, she was just following Ren-Wei as it is her habit since small but now she’s starting to search for her Taipei’s dream. A-Qing mentions that he is a childhood friend of Liu-Chuan and Bai-Xue adds on that it’s been 5-6 years since she met Liu-Chuan in high school.

Unable to sleep, Bai-Xue and Ren-Wei decides to leave the sleeping ground and have a talk. Ren-Wei asks her who is the person she like but decides to not be concerned about it anymore as Bai-Xue doesn’t want to talk about it. He ask for her permission to let him continue liking her. Bai-Xue asks him whether it is tiring to like someone and Ren-Wei replies that although it is tiring at times, it is worth it. Bai-Xue thanks him for liking her. She is happy to have him as a friend and emphasize that she only sees him as a friend for now. She asks him whether he is willing to continue to be her friend and he replies that as long as she is happy, everything he does for her is worth it. Ren-Wei tells her that it doesn’t matter what the person she likes feel about her and promises to make her happy if he become her boyfriend in the future.

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Back at the sleeping ground, Jia-En who is in deep sleep turns around and put her arms on Liu-Chuan. This awaken Liu-Chuan and he clearly feels something stirring in his heart as he lingers at her sleeping face. He quickly turns back to sleep as he hears Ren-Wei and Bai-Xue walking back.

The next morning, Jia-En asks her friends to have breakfast together at the place where 3631 recommended. As others are unable to go for the breakfast, only Ri-Qi and Jia-En is left to go alone together. Liu-Chuan who arrives at the club later notice them heading out together and quickly follows them. Bai-Xue tries calling out to Liu Chuan but to no avail as Liu-Chuan leave the clubroom. Ren-Wei notice Bai-Xue’s disappointment as she stares at Liu-Chuan’s back, clearly noting that there’s more to it.

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Liu-Chuan trails behind Ri-Qi and Jia-En who are chatting happily. Ri-Qi brings Jia-En to a different breakfast shop and she notes that this is not the shop 3631 recommended. He quickly makes an excuse that he wants to recommend her another good breakfast shop. Ri-Qi compliments Jia-En’s earring and asks where she bought it. Jia-En is confused at his question but before she can reply, Liu-Chuan quickly joins them for breakfast and tell Ri-Qi to not try and hear compliment for his own purchase. Jia-En asks what brings Liu-Chuan here and he counter-question them why did they not ask others along for breakfast. I smell petty jealousy in Liu-Chuan, Haha! Jia-En replies that he was not around when she ask them for breakfast.

As they are eating breakfast, the typhoon commercial starring Liu-Chuan’s parents is airing on the TV and they start to discuss about how it is rare to see political figures to be concern about current issues. Jia-En says that her parents like Liu-Chuan’s dad and he’s a nice political figure unlike those corrupted ones. However, Liu-Chuan rebukes that claim as he thinks that his dad just make use of this commercial to earn good publicity. Jia-En quickly notes the sudden change in Liu-Chuan’s mood and feels concern about him.

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Jia-En wants to ask 3631 (Ri-Qi in her mind) about what happened to Liu-Chuan during the breakfast but quickly decides that it is not a good idea as Liu-Chuan is his roommate and may see this. She wonders whether she is thinking too much into it. Ren-Wei visits her and start reading her shojo-mangas. Jia-En asks what happened to him as Ren-Wei keeps on sighing. He confides to her that he seems to know who is the person that Bai-Xue likes. Jia-En curiously ask who is the person but Ren-Wei replies who is the person is not important as long as he will be the last person for Bai-Xue. Jia-En cheers for him as he assures himself that he can be the last person for Bai-Xue.

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Liu-Chuan shows Ri-Qi the chat history between him and Jia-En. Ri-Qi is amused at their conversation because this is his first time seeing this different side of Liu-Chuan. Jia-En knocks on their door, looking for 3631. Liu-Chuan’s face immediately fall hearing that. Definitely getting a taste of his own medicine, hahaha! This is so fun to watch!

Jia-En tells Ri-Qi that there’s something she want to discuss with him so Liu-Chuan leaves the room for them to be alone. But he quickly returns and asks them to chat outside as he need the room to write a report. Okay, this is really satisfying to watch! Liu-Chuan and his petty interference, hahaha!

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As they stand outside the dorm building, Jia-En asks whether he notice anything strange with Liu-Chuan after they come back from the breakfast shop. Ri-Qi replies that Liu-Chuan is pretty emotional lately and there seems to be things bothering him. Ri-Qi looks up the building and sees Liu-Chuan watching them from the window. As Liu-Chuan’s eyes meet with Ri-Qi’s, he quickly uses his dog, Momo to hide his face, LOL! That’s not the best way to hide your face as I’m sure your face is bigger than the dog, hahahaha!

Jia-En gives Ri-Qi a soundtrack CD of the Japanese movie Loveletter as a present in return for the earrings he gave her. Ri-Qi returns back to the dorm and asks whether Liu-Chuan waited for a long time. As Liu-Chuan denies, he teases him that since he don’t really care, there’s no need to report what he and Jia-En talked about and he will keep Jia-En’s CD present for himself but will kindly lend him to listen to it first. He advises Liu-Chuan to start thinking about love and relationship. Soon after Ri-Qi is out of sight, Liu-Chuan immediately picks up the CD left on the table and have a good look before putting it back on the table, fuming in pettiness. Good job, Ri-Qi!

Bai-Xue visits Jia-En to wish her good luck for her exams. They start chatting about Ri-Qi and she tells him that Ri-Qi’s family is running a pawn shop business. This alarms Jia-En and she asks her whether there’s any political figure in Ri-Qi’s family. Bai-Xue replies that there’s no political connection in Ri-Qi’s family. Jia-En is starting to suspect something is amiss, smart girl!’

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The next morning, Ri-Qi finds Jia-En and gives her a book on code-studies. He tells her to solve the code and find out the meaning behind 3631. He also hints her that he prefers to ride his bicycle than riding a train, leaving Jia-En confused.

Liu-Chuan arrives at the club and sees Jia-En reading a book about code-studies, he asks her why is she reading about code-studies when exams are over. She doesn’t directly reply him but tells him that she’s suspecting that Ri-Qi is not the real 3631 as he often forget many parts of their conversation and she feels that she doesn’t connect with him as well as 3631. There’s always many things to talk about with 3631 but she can’t seem to do that with Ri-Qi. She also notes that she hears that Ri-Qi’s family runs a pawn shop and that is different from 3631’s family background. As she decides to clear things up with Ri-Qi, she asks Liu-Chuan whether he knows where is Ri-Qi’s exam venue. Clearly affected, Liu-Chuan quickly replies that he don’t know and continue flipping the Treasure Hunting Club message book.

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As he flips the pages, Jia-En spots a message with a familiar handwriting that resembles 3631’s handwriting and ask him to stop flipping, only to see that it’s written by Liu-Chuan. Jia-En stares at him as she falls deep in thought. They paused for a moment as Liu-Chuan stares at Jia-En and notes her missing an earring on one side. She panics and look all over the room. Liu-Chuan calms her down and ask her to think carefully about the places she passed by just now. She replies that she passed by the Christmas dance party meet-up venue before coming into the clubroom. Hearing that, he immediately runs out to find the missing earring for her. However, he is so fast that Jia-En have no chance to tell him about where is the meet-up venue.

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Liu-Chuan finds the missing earring on the wooden trestle and happily heads back to the clubroom. Jia-En asks where did he find the earring and without thinking, he immediately replies that it’s at 3631’s meet-up venue, before slowly realizing his slip of tongue. Realizing the truth behind 3631’s identity, Jia-En stares at Liu-Chuan who is awkwardly avoiding her gaze. As he returns to his seat, Jia-En tells him that she seems to know that Ri-Qi is not 3631 but now, she doesn’t want to know who is 3631 anymore. What a perfect OTP moment!

At night, Liu-Chuan receives a new message from Jia-En and she says that she spent a lot of time finding 3631 but after meeting up with him, he immediately disappears. So she asks whether they could return to what they were like in the past and chat freely in the internet.

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Comments:

First, I wanna applaud the writers for surprising me with unexpected events and developments, FANTASTIC! Who knew that misunderstandings can be this delicious when it’s done right? It acts more than a mere plot device as it succeeded in bringing out unexpected sides of Liu-Chuan, the hidden intelligence in Jia-En and the conflicted feelings in an organic manner.

Jia-En, well done! That’s my girl!! For the very first time, I feel that Jia-En’s growth is this apparent. She have become a girl full of good qualities which make Liu-Chuan’s affection for her so “right”.

Not that she wasn’t endearing before, but now, I feel that she’s starting to stand on the same ground with Liu-Chuan. In the past, she was inexperienced and was in the phase of growing up. On the other hand, Liu-Chuan always felt like a mentor to her and she always needed the push to grow up but through this resolution, she showed that she’s capable to be a thoughtful, observant, intelligent and understanding person.

I wasn’t expecting that Jia-En will find out who is the real 3631 in such a way, I really like how the writers develop the whole misunderstanding. Jia-En is able to solve the puzzle through bits and pieces of clues given. She found out who is the real 3631 and know that Liu-Chuan had been lying to her but instead of feeling angry, she chose to forgive, understand and patiently wait for him to open up to her.

Liu-Chuan and Jia-En always felt like soulmates who naturally syncs in perfection, they’ve this impeccable mutual understanding and their interactions are always so subtle. That is really the biggest charm of our main OTP.

We get to know more details on the relationship of the three musketeers and I really enjoy their friendship. However, I’m really hoping that A-Qing will refrain from making bad suggestions to Liu-Chuan as it gave him a lot of wrong ideas. Even though A-Qing is Liu-Chuan’s childhood friend, Ri-Qi is clearly the better influence for Liu-Chuan and also understands him better, Haha!! Ri-Qi earns a brownie point from me for being such an awesome friend!

Though I was a bit miffed and frustrated at Liu-Chuan, it was all smoothly resolved as Liu-Chuan gets a taste of his own medicine and I love jealous Liu-Chuan, that is so satisfying to watch. Can I get more of jealous Liu-Chuan?? Still, although I understand that his political background is his complex, I don’t see the big deal of having Jia-En finding out about his family’s political background as I believe that Jia-En won’t think badly of him because of that. Tsk tsk… dude, you better not try to take anymore suggestions from A-Qing as it will be you who suffer in the end.

The side romance managed to shine in this episode as Ren-Wei continues his streak of sheer awesome-ness as a sincere and a dependable person for Bai-Xue to rely on. That’s the right way to get Bai-Xue! You go boy!! Rather than sulking and becoming too occupied on disappointments and finding out who is the person Bai-Xue like, he is more concerned on how to get the affection of Bai-Xue. It’s his sincerity that moves Bai-Xue and marks the first start of their two-way communication as it is no longer a one-sided thing from Ren-Wei, Bai-Xue starts seeing him as a friend and that’s a good start. I’m fully rooting for the Ping Dong childhood friends.

On the other hand, our poor Xiao-Wei may be the only sacrifice in this misunderstanding as the introverted girl is slowly returning to her own shell because of the shock she experienced. Ri-Qi and Xiao-Wei may not have started on a relationship yet but there was a clear mutual affection and seeing her crush becoming close with her good friend is definitely uncomfortable for her to watch. Her reaction is understandable as she’s inexperienced, timid and soft like a small creature, a little bit of setback can make her immediately retract back to her own shell. I just hope that someone can clear the misunderstanding for this poor girl and I can only depend on Ri-Qi for that.

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carolies541

A lazy person who loves to procrastinate and burn the midnight oil to watch Asian dramas instead. She can't live without dramas, variety shows and indie music.

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3 Comments

  • galen • 4 years ago

    I think the writing was a piece of art, they set up the fakeout and the reveal all in one ep! And it was so fun to see Liu Chuan squirm in jealousy when Jia En paid so much attention to Ri Qi. I also liked the beat when Jia En thanks the real 3631, like she said she wanted to all episode.

    I’m finding Ren Wei a really well-written character. He may seem superficial and rather dim, but he’s actually quite clear about his standing with Bai Xue. It’s just in his character to forge ahead despite the odds.

    Also loving Ren Wei and Jia En’s friendship. Every episode, the writer shows us that Ren Wei and Jia En have this easy, fantastic friendship. He tucks her into her sleeping bag, borrows her comics without asking, and tells her everything. They’ve really been friends forever.

    Poor Xiao Wei! But it seems from the BTS that there may be more than one reel to real life pairing in the air!

    • carolies541 • 3 years ago

      It seems like Xiao Wei and Ri-Qi are really close in real life, hmmm… When you gather all these young good looking stars, there will be sparks flying off everywhere.

      Because Ren-Wei has been such a good friend in the recent episodes, I almost forgot that he was the guy who changed Jia-En’s university application card. Hahaha!

      In PTT, I saw this fun cover for Taiwan Drama board, it’s basically a graph of Liu-Chuan and Ren-Wei’s character growth and their lines intersect at Ep7, Ren-Wei is basically becoming a better person and good reviews for Liu-Chuan is decreasing because he asked Ri-Qi to pretend as 3631….

      It’s difficult to describe fully… but here is the screencap: http://i.minus.com/iAVQgfNHPsBVQ.jpg

    • galen • 3 years ago

      It’s good that the BTS is moving away from the focus on Lego and Rongrong, it’s nice to see more of the rest of the cast, and they’re all super cute in how they all get along.

      Haha, I forgot about the uni application as well. That graphic is so on point! I guess because Ren Wei started out looking like such a jerk, and Liu Chuan has always been cool and perfect. It’s nice to see Liu Chuan’s flaws; after all, he is still just a uni student.

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