One of the hottest K-Dramas right now has to be Cheer Up. The show airs on SBS and follows a group of students in a high school cheerleading club.
Since airing, the show has received praise from netizens for the storyline, characters, and refreshing attitude towards topics.
Yet, a past scene has recently gained attention after a Korean media outlet described it as unrealistic, and it’s surrounding the topic of “dating violence.”
In the scene, Tae Cho Hee, played by fromis_9‘s Gyuri, had an encounter with her ex-boyfriend. As her ex-boyfriend enters the scene, he proceeds to slap Tae Cho Hee across the face without any reason except that she “Blocked” him.
Rather than take it or allow the person she is with to stand up for her, Tae Cho Hee took matters into her own hands. Starting by saying, “You hit me first,” Tae Cho Hee proceeds to slap her ex-boyfriend back before continuing the attack with her knees and then her bag.
After her ex-boyfriend falls to the ground, Tae Cho Hee leans over him and explains, “It would hurt your ego to hear rumors about you getting beat up by a girl, right?”
She then states, “Don’t ever come to see me again,” before walking off in a strong manner.
In an article by Insight Korea, the outlet explained that netizens had mixed views about the accuracy of the portrayal.
Many explained that although it was refreshing, it seemed unrealistic, with others pointing out the size difference was just too much, and one even pointed out that women should just call the police in these circumstances.
Yet, while Korean media outlets criticized the scene in many ways, international fans had a more positive view of the portrayal. While many explained that the scene was actually empowering, explaining that women should be able to stand up to abuse and not always be represented as weak.
One fan even created an edit showcasing that Tae Cho Hee was actually a figure of female empowerment throughout her scenes.
jang gyuri as theia's vice captain tae chohee in cheer up (2022) pic.twitter.com/lDHjl4DZpZ
— div's media (@10yearsticket) October 20, 2022
It isn’t surprising that Korean and international netizens have different views on the scene. The scene showcased something out of the norm and not what is expected from a K-Drama in a society with quite patriarchal views on gender expectations.