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True Beauty Anime has been announced for release in 2024. Ever since Solo Leveling, Otakus have started to get on the Hallyu train (myself included), and the hype continues. Tower of God, Lookism, and even Solo Leveling get anime adaptations, and many people got into Manhwas and wished for an adaptation for it. Around this time, not too long ago an announcement was made. A Manhwa by the name of True Beauty will get an anime adaptation.

Ever since I got into Webtoon and started reading “I Love Yoo” after finishing “All of Us Are Dead”, I was suggested True Beauty multiple times. But after reading the description, I decided not to read it. Maybe because I didn’t like the word “makeup” *put your pitchforks down*. I was new to webtoon and only downloaded it to read “All of Us Are Dead”, but I got introduced to gems that I would be very happy to suggest should I get the time, but back to the topic.

So, after getting suggested and ignoring True Beauty multiple times, I decided to get into K-Drama. Around that time, I learnt that more than half of the webtoons present in the Webtoon App, have had K-Drama Adaptations, True Beauty was no exception. And so, being new to the K-Drama scene, I decided to start my “official” journey to the land of K-Dramas with True Beauty, while reading the Manhwa simultaneously. And now we’re getting an anime adaptation.

True Beauty (Official Trailer) | WEBTOON

A Reflection Of South Korea’s Beauty Standard

True Beauty, translated as The Advent of a Goddess in Korean, along with various other titles in different countries, is a South Korean manhwa written and illustrated by Yaongyi. The story follows Lim Ju-Kyung, a girl born with a skin condition that leaves her face with acne marks, for which she was bullied all her life. Before starting her high school life, Ju-kyung decided to try makeup. With the help of online forums and instructional videos, Ju-kyung becomes a master at the art of makeup and gets hailed as the Goddess at her new school.

With 223 chapters in total, the story went from Ju-kyung’s high school to adulthood and focuses on her insecurities regarding her look in school, work and love life. And there’s a big reason why it got popular in South Korea. The country has an unbearable level of beauty standards set for its people, including idols. Their status in school, work, life etc is judged by how they look in terms of face value and body mass and many citizens take up plastic surgery. And that’s no joke, South Korea is called the Plastic Surgery Capital of the World.

So, the story of Ju-kyung could be considered a metaphor for the South Korean Beauty Standards. And not just Ju-kyung’s story, but other characters such as Kang Soo-Jin, and Han Go-Woon face the same issue. Another manhwa tried that, and it’s called, “My ID is Gangnam Beauty”. But I am unsure as to whether it did well or not.

True Beauty - Poster - Deshi Geek
True Beauty – Poster – Deshi Geek

Why Is True Beauty So Special?

Concluding with 223 chapters, Ju-kyung’s story ended on a happy note. But did it matter tho? People knew the ending (of sorts) due to some otherworldly knowledge. *cough* K-Drama *cough* On December 9 2020, tvN released a 16-episode worth of drama that tried to tell Ju-kyung’s life as the Goddess of High School. But Ju-kyung’s high-school life ended in chapter 58 and started her venture into adulthood. And I have to say, the high-school arc was not that big of a deal, then how did the drama do better?

Remember the “adaptation game” I mentioned in my Zom100 article? Well, one of the most confusing rules of the adaptation game is, “You can’t completely follow the source material, but you can’t completely ignore it either.” Now what does it mean? Well, let’s look at True Beauty manhwa and drama and analyze them to understand it.

The drama of True Beauty had the same pacing structure as all the K-Dramas have but with a story that the audience could relate to, and it exploded. And of course, if we were to consider that out of the equation, K-Drama has a separate fanbase of its own, and they had to please them as well. In other words, the show creators made a few changes that both Webtoon and Drama audiences could enjoy. And those changes served well.

Apart from the mish-mash of chapters and Hwang In-Youp’s performance as Han Seo-Jun, one of the notable changes made is that instead of making it a struggle for everyday people for their outer beauty, they put more focus on Ju-Kyung via her high-school life. Through that, the drama audience was able to relate to her more than the webtoon did, because we get to see her reactions to these situations. And we as an audience felt it.

True Beauty (Official Trailer 2) | WEBTOON

Is True Beauty Worth Getting An Anime Adaptation?

As readers when we hear of an anime announcement, we think, “Will it be better than the manga?” Mostly because we have some friends that spoil us with the manga. But maybe for the first time, an anime is not competing with its source material, but with one of its adaptations.

The TV drama True Beauty has had a huge impact on the K-Drama Industry. With Hwang In-Youp’s performance as Han Seo-Jun that revolutionized the Second Lead Syndrome, and cementing its status as one of the gateway dramas, the anime has some serious competition.

As mentioned, the manhwa’s 58 chapters that focused on Ju-Kyung’s high school life were “meh,” the drama made it a sensation. They did that by bringing in elements from later chapters and integrating them into the show, all while bringing original characters that make the high-school arc livelier. It is unlikely that the anime will do the same as many anime face backlash for straying from the source material. And it won’t just focus on Ju-Kyung’s high school life. So how will the anime top it?

True Beauty - Visual - Deshi Geek
True Beauty – Visual – Deshi Geek

My Verdict

Well, if you take my advice, I’d say watch the anime when it comes out. As I mentioned, the manhwa is a reflection of South Korea’s beauty standard, and choosing to not watch the anime might do an injustice to the victims of the beauty standard. And if we were to forget about that, then we have the manhwa’s story to consider. The drama told only Lim Ju-Kyung’s story to resonate with the audience, but the manhwa told the people’s story through Ju-Kyung.

Of course, there are other reasons as well, but to me, there’s no other reason better than this. Maybe you guys can generate your own reasons to watch the anime when it comes out. And my only wish for True Beauty anime is, give me something that doesn’t make me feel like I am watching the drama, or something less than that. Give me what you want to show me, the definition of True Beauty.



If my name didn't give it away, I am a Baka and an Otaku. And, I do a pretty good job at being both of them. More often than not at the same time.

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