My First, First Love Season 2 is recognizably joyful and sweet but also journeys to the darker corners of youth as the series tackles more pressing social issues.
Netflix’s Korean romance-drama My First, First Love is back on our screens for Season 2. With it returns the same four lovable housemates, thrown together under extenuating circumstances learning how to navigate the world of friendship and dating. My First, First Love Season 2 is just as adorable, naive and lovable as the first installment although often sickeningly so. Audiences will also be delighted to know that the world of our four housemates has hardly changed and should feel content to feel very much back at home in the familiar surroundings of Seoul. Returning to the disorganized and chaotic shared house this season you can expect a whole new line up of heartbreaks, betrayals and easily avoided misunderstandings as the group of friends come to grasps with adulthood.
My First, First Love Season 2 follows four housemates, Tae-o, Songi, Ga-rin, and Hoon, alongside love interests Do-Hyun and Ji-Yoon. Tae-o and Songi have been friends their whole lives and depend on each other for almost everything; as they enter college each grows apart and falls in love with different people. Only when they realize how much they appreciate each other do things become a bit complicated as they try to figure out what or who it is they actually want. Friendship is also tested between Ga-rin and Hoon, the giddy troublemakers who surprisingly take on very different roles this season. Previously enjoyed for their immature and playful chemistry, the pair come into conflict as they face themes of betrayal and deception. A somewhat darker turn of events causes Hoon to take drastic measures in order to save himself from the path of poverty.
My First, First Love Season 2 is refreshingly different whilst simultaneously being comfortably familiar. The soundtrack remains delightfully youthful and immature with scores that could fit neatly in the background of a children’s story. With the characters still teasing each other relentlessly and often using rudeness as a way of bonding, audiences get to enjoy the silliness of young friends. For the romantics at heart My First, First Love remains corny and tender with frequent close-ups that switch back and forth, sharing glances of fluttering eyelids, seemingly lasting a lifetime in the build-up to delicate moments. The long pauses and comically over the top stares can sometimes be a bit too sentimental and banal, honestly leading to a few impatient eye rolls. That as it may, there are also some genuine moments of great heart and softness that make viewers feel a part of something very private and meaningful.
My First, First Love Season 2 tackles noticeably more serious content with the dilemmas and situations our characters face. The show consistently remains lighthearted and bright but the creators have clearly decided to tackle far more pressing topics such as sexual assault, homelessness, unemployment, and poverty. A surprising move considering how naive and frivolous My First, First Love usually is, previously choosing to focus on less hefty and more upbeat scenarios. Personally, this is a welcomed change as audiences get to experience the juxtaposition of innocence and dilemma. Watching the characters come face to face with very adult problems whilst still being fairly inexperienced and candid results in some very chaotic and impulsive decision making. Our doe-eyed characters are blissfully naive and watching them learn big life lessons and taking responsibility for themselves is frequently moving and inspirational.
Overall My First, First Love Season 2 is pleasant and fun, it provides a delightfully satisfying watch for anyone who enjoys a bit of romantic gooey cheese. This being said My First, First Love has evolved this season to be more topical, including heavy content that faces youth around the world. It is an engaging show for young audiences to relate to, the passion and excitement that comes from new friendships and relationships is nostalgic and soothing. My First, First Love also has a way of not being ridiculously pretentious, which sometimes is common within typical K-drama romances, no one takes themselves too seriously and it only adds to its offhand charm. Although being integral to the series, romance doesn’t always take center stage, leaving breathing room for purposeful secondary storylines. Finally, My First, First Love displays impressive duality and I know I will not be alone in welcoming the cast and characters back to the screen as we learn what love and friendship truly mean.
Maggie has been a film critic for Ready Steady Cut since 2018. Maggie gained a BSc in Film Production and Technology leading to her most notable credit for the production designer for a short film screened as part of the London Film Festival line up.