Chinese Dramas, Drama Recaps

Recap: The Journey from Tonight is White (Ep. 6)

Episode 6 of The Journey from Tonight is White (路从今夜白) is an episode of truths, as the truth comes out in more ways than one. Ye Bai and You Yan make strides in strengthening their relationship, with Ye Bai finally deciding to be honest and speak for once. Meanwhile, Zi Jian finally discovers one of the truths that he’s been getting close to.

Recap

Ye Bai tells You Yan that he likes her right as her music ends. She takes out her earphones and asks him what he said, but he says he didn’t say anything. Then, You Yan says, she’ll go downstairs and buy some dinner. She starts to dash for the door in an almost deer-in-headlights way, but Ye Bai stops her, saying he has a confession to make.

He apologizes for lying to her. She thinks that he’s still talking about his fake injury from before, and says that he doesn’t need to worry about that, but he says that’s not it. He tells her about his color blindness and how he’s been keeping her by his side and using her this whole time because he can sometimes see color when he’s around her.

You Yan asks why he’s suddenly telling her all of this, and silently wonders if he’s trying to say goodbye and end their partnership. Instead, he asks her: knowing all this, is she still willing to be by his side?

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Shan Shan wakes up in the middle of the night and is startled to see You Yan awake on the balcony. She goes over to see how she’s doing, and You Yan asks her, “Do you think I need to fall in love in order to have a complete college experience?” Shan Shan wants to talk about You Yan, but You Yan keeps turning the conversation around back to Shan Shan. You Yan admits that she’s not sure if she wants to be in a relationship. After all, Shan Shan knows about her circumstances. Her body might betray her at any moment, and that would complicate any relationship. You Yan tells Shan Shan to go to sleep first, and stays up a bit longer.

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The next morning, You Yan takes a few steps out of her building after class, then promptly turns around and runs back inside, leaving Shan Shan and Xiao Cong bewildered. It’s probably because Ye Bai is quickly approaching the building. Shan Shan asks Ye Bai what he’s doing there, and he looks around awkwardly before saying that he’s going to the cafeteria, and starts heading off in the wrong direction.

Thinking the coast is clear, You Yan exits the building. She gets a text from Ye Bai, telling her that he can accept whatever decision she makes, and that she shouldn’t worry about it too much. She wonders aloud how she can not worry, not realizing that Ye Bai is right behind her. He taps her on the shoulder, making her jump. She asks him what he’s doing here, and he says that he hadn’t heard from a certain someone all morning, so he had to come and look for her himself. She claims that she was busy and in class all morning, so she didn’t have a chance to respond.

Now that he’s here, she might as well respond in person. She takes a step closer to him, then says that she will forever keep his secret for him, and now that she knows his secret, she will try to help him find a way to recover his color vision. He’s overcome with gratitude and starts thanking her profusely. She smiles in embarrassment, saying that it’s something she should do, then says that they don’t have much time and should get to the studio. She sighs in relief when Ye Bai can’t see her face, and Ye Bai smiles after her.

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They experiment with colors at the studio, but don’t find much success. Ye Bai hovers over You Yan’s shoulder while she paints, which makes her uncomfortable, so she exiles him to the couch. He sketches her while she paints. She finally presents him with two cutesy, colorful paintings, which make him chuckle, but don’t help him see color. She moves to throw away her inferior paintings, but he asks if he can keep one of them. She thinks that he’s just trying to humor her: her paintings are no match for an artistic genius’s, but lets him keep it.

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She starts trying to paint more, but he tells her to stop for now. They should go eat instead. There will be more opportunities to experiment.

They end up at a Caffe Bene (product placement?), where You Yan asks Ye Bai when he started having problems with his color vision. His mind flashes again to broken images of a red car, a fallen umbrella, and squealing brakes. The memories are painful and his head starts hurting. Alarmed, You Yan tells him to stop thinking about it and tries to get him to drink some hot water.

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Zi Jian and Long Li also happen to be in Caffe Bene. Long Li notices Ye Bai and You Yan and points them out to Zi Jian, recognizing You Yan only as the pretty girl who confessed to Zi Jian at the basketball game. He wonders what they’re doing together. Zi Jian looks unhappy about seeing them together, and goes off abruptly.

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That night, Zi Jian waits for You Yan in front of her dorm building and gives her a gift. It’s a necklace, which she refuses to accept, but he says that it’s a thank-you gift and his way of asking her to model for him again in the future. She doesn’t want to model for him, since she agreed to model for Ye Bai first, but he says very sincerely that he’s willing to wait for her for as long as it takes, and can wait for her to change her mind. She gives him a different kind of creative inspiration.

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She thanks him for his faith in her, but she says that she’s not as great as he thinks he is. She quickly puts the gift back into his hands, then runs off into her dorm.

The Sunshine Girl painting by Chi Zheng has finally been restored to the Yi Xin Gallery. Some of the workers at the gallery tell Huai An that a client stopped by and asked to be notified when the painting returned to the gallery. They hand Huai An a business card for “Lin.” Huai An looks at the business card with a thinking face on. Clearly, she’s wondering why Ye Bai would be so interested in this painting.

Professor Lin takes his art class outside again for a surprise evaluation that will count toward their final grade. They have to produce a painting with an apple as the prompt. But Ye Bai is skipping class that day. Zi Yan starts texting Ye Bai to tell him to get to class, but before he can finish sending his message, Professor Lin sees him with his phone out and confiscates it.

Ye Bai and You Yan are at Ye Bai’s apartment, where You Yan plays with changing the colors of an LED light and asks Ye Bai if he can notice the color changes. He can’t. He receives a text from Zi Yan telling him that they’re having a quiz in class that day, but doesn’t seem to care much. He doesn’t even know if he can successfully paint anymore, so what does class and graduation matter? This makes You Yan cross her arms and ask him why she’s helping him if he doesn’t care anymore. He starts to try to respond, but she doesn’t let him, saying that now that he’s told her everything (and she flashes back for a moment to Ye Bai’s actual confession that he likes her — she knows!), she has to help him, and insists that he go to class.

She stares him down and he smiles as he grudgingly agrees to go, telling her to wait for him there at his apartment.

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By the time Ye Bai gets to campus, the class is already wrapping up. Professor Lin refuses to give Ye Bai a chance to make-up the quiz, but Zi Jian is there and steps in, offering to proctor if the professor is okay with it. Professor Lin agrees.

Zi Jian watches over Ye Bai’s shoulder as he paints, and asks him if he’s sure he wants to use only those two colors. Ye Bai doesn’t say anything and just looks at him in response. Zi Jian backs away and Ye Bai turns back to his painting. But Zi Jian takes this opportunity alone with Ye Bai to start interrogating him with questions, asking him to if he has plans for after graduation, if he’s submitted works to art magazines or entered art competitions before. Ye Bai gives him very noncommittal answers. Zi Jian asks if he’s heard of the International Young Artists award, to which Ye Bai pauses, then says no. Zi Jian wonders when China will next win the award: in all these years, only Chi Zheng has won. Ye Bai doesn’t respond, and instead snarkily comments on how he had never discovered before how annoyingly talkative Zi Jian is.

Once Ye Bai is done, Zi Jian spends a long time analyzing his painting. He has his thinking face on.

Huai An goes looking for Ye Bai at the art studio, where Zi Yan and some of his classmates are painting. Zi Yan tells her that Ye Bai usually paints at his apartment, not the studio, and she leaves to look for him. But once she’s gone, he suddenly remembers that Ye Bai isn’t at his apartment right now — he’s painting outside.

She goes looking for Ye Bai at his apartment, and is surprised to find You Yan there. “You…” she says, then pushes past You Yan into the apartment. She asks You Yan what she’s doing there, then criticizes the colors that You Yan has been mixing. She starts lecturing You Yan on the art of mixing colors, and asks if Ye Bai has been teaching her how to mix colors. She asks You Yan if she likes Ye Bai, right as Ye Bai opens the door and enters the apartment. They don’t notice him. Huai An warns You Yan that this is an important time for Ye Bai and that she doesn’t You Yan to be a distraction to him. He has much more important things to do than teaching You Yan how to mix colors, such as working on his submission for the International Young Artists contest.

They finally notice Ye Bai in the apartment, and Huai An says they were just talking about mixing colors and asks him which color he likes better. There’s an awkward moment in which Ye Bai doesn’t respond, then You Yan jumps in and says, “Of course it’s Zhou-jie‘s color.”

Ye Bai asks Huai An what she’s doing here, and she responds that he knows why she’s here. They go out onto the balcony to talk. She reminds him that the deadline for contest submissions is in three weeks and asks him how he’s doing. He evasively says that he knows and will be doing things his way. She then surprises him by saying that she knows he’s very interested in Chi Zheng’s paintings, specifically Sunshine Girl. That painting is going to be auctioned off, but Huai An can make sure that it doesn’t go to auction if Ye Bai signs the contract with her. He looks troubled.

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Huai An leaves without saying a word to You Yan, giving her only a dismissive look. You Yan stands and respectfully bids her goodbye. Ye Bai apologizes to You Yan for putting her in a difficult situation. He tells her that she should go home, since he thinks that his eyes won’t be making any progress today.

This makes You Yan angry. She asks him why he’s always like this — always insisting on taking things on by himself and refusing to let other people in. She’s willingly helping him, so why is he apologizing? She hasn’t given up on him yet, so why is he giving up on himself? He stammers that he apologized because he felt bad that she was wronged, but she just glares at him, sighing that he’s driving her crazy.

She suddenly gets an idea and grabs his arm: last time he saw color when he met her at the island. Maybe they should go back to the island and experiment to see if they can recreate a situation that will help him regain his color vision!

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Ye Bai asks her if she’s afraid of people misunderstanding. If they go to the island together, everyone will think they’re a couple. She drops his his arm. Ye Bai suggests that they can each bring a friend, and You Yan quickly agrees, then rushes out. They depart tomorrow!

Ye Bai asks Zi Yan to go to the island with him. At first, Zi Yan refuses, not wanting to be the third wheel, but Ye Bai mentions that You Yan will also be bringing a friend. This makes Zi Yan perk up — is it someone as pretty as she is? But Ye Bai doesn’t know, and says that it’ll probably be her best friend. Zi Yan recalls that her best friend is Shan Shan, and immediately refuses again, but Ye Bai threatens him with their final project.

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The next day, You Yan, Ye Bai, Shan Shan, and Zi Yan eat by the shore. Zi Yan asks Ye Bai to pass the red-capped spice over, and You Yan quickly jumps in to hand it over for him. She then stops Zi Yan when he offers Ye Bai the spice, saying that he doesn’t eat spicy food. This makes Shan Shan and Zi Yan smile knowingly and they tease her about how well she knows Ye Bai’s tastes.

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The four of them enjoy themselves on the island, and Zi Yan and Shan Shan constantly bicker. While on a walk, Shan Shan twists her ankle, and Zi Yan carries her back to their hotel, leaving Ye Bai and You Yan alone. They go to the beach, where Ye Bai buys You Yan her favorite ice cream bar. She asks him how he knows what she likes and he thinks back to the day he followed her, but says that he also likes the same flavor. You Yan asks why he didn’t get the same flavor, and he responds that he wanted to try something different, then leans in to wipe some ice cream from the corner of her mouth.

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Zi Jian flips through an issue of Primary Colors art magazine, and stops on a spread of Lin’s artwork, finding it familiar. He frowns and then grabs the painting that Ye Bai made earlier, comparing it to one of the works in the magazine. They both feature a style that is undeniably similar. Gu Ye Bai is Lin? “It can’t be,” he says out loud to himself.

Thoughts

I don’t get why Zi Jian was so surprised to finally discover that Ye Bai is Lin. He’s been dancing around the idea for so long that it should’ve been obvious: and I guess it was, otherwise he wouldn’t have figured it out. But still! But what will he do with this information? I understand that he’s curious, but is he going to take the villainous route, or does he just want to know for the sake of knowing? I’m sure this will pump up the rivalry between them, and add more fuel to Zi Jian’s fire to compete with Ye Bai.

There were a lot more cute moments in this episode between Ye Bai and You Yan, but I still don’t love them as a couple. I’m glad Ye Bai is finally being more honest with You Yan, but I really feel like he doesn’t deserve all the effort she put into him. He hasn’t done anything to deserve it yet other than just existing! She’s just a nice person. It was good seeing her stand up to him and order him around for his own good, but thus far I feel like her efforts are wasted.

I’m still not feeling super invested in The Journey from Tonight is White. It feels a lot like the idol drama it is, especially in terms of acting, and I don’t find the whole color-blindness plot to be exceptionally convincing or interesting. It’s not slice-of-life or real enough to be loved as one of those school/youth dramas, nor is it quite dramatic enough to be one of those addicting, roller-coaster ride dramas. But I’m still here watching. 🙂

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