What’s up Kdrama fans?
Are you ready for a top 10 list?
I’m sure you are! Get ready fam. Today, I will be listing my top 10 favorite Korean Dramas as of April, 2019.
Don’t worry! This is just my opinion. You are totally free to let me know what your favorites down in the comments. Until then, enjoy my top 10 favorite Kdramas List. Let’s start with my number 10 choice…
Number 10. “Oh My Ghostess”
Ah, this Kdrama. I was very lucky to check this show out with my mom when it was playing on Netflix, and I was very impressed with the story. Basically, “Oh my Ghostess” is a Supernatural/ Crime Drama that tells the story of Na Bong-sun (Park Bo-young). Bong-sun is an extremely shy assistant chef at Sun Restaurant, and struggles with the ability to see ghosts (an ability inherited from her shaman grandmother). Her life gets even more complicated when she becomes possessed by a virgin ghost named Shin Soon-ae (Kim Seul-gi), who believes that she must lose her virginity in order to pass on to the after-life. This plan, of course, becomes difficult as Soon-ae and Bong-sun fall for Sun Restarant’s star chef, the arrogant Kang Sun-woo (Jo Jung-suk).
It’s a pretty simple plot on the surface. We have a love triangle between a chef, his assistant chef, and a ghost. Initially, this was the plot that kept my attention (mostly because Bong-sun’s painfully awkward personality drove me crazy). As the show went on though, I grew to appreciate Boyoung’s acting ability (since she was in charge of portraying two completely different characters), and cheered when Bong-soon showed growth as a character. Then, we got the mystery behind Soon-ae’s death in the series, and Oh… my… GOSH! If you haven’t watched this drama, yet, please do it! The story is actually really good, and the performances from the main actors are AMAZING!!!
Number 9. “You’re Beautiful”
“You’re beautiful” was one of the first Kdramas that I fell in love with. In this show, an aspiring nun named Mi-nyeo (Park Shin-hye) must pose as her identical twin brother, Mi-nam, in the band A.N.Jell, so he can fix a botched eye-surgery in the United States. Life gets complicated as Mi-nyeo becomes close to the other members, Hwang Tae-kyung (Jang Keun-suk), Kang Shin-woo (CNBLUE’s Jung Yong-hwa), and Jeremy (FTIsland’s Lee Hong-gi), and they each fall for her.
Honestly, this show is super cute, and it has so many hilarious moments (including a scene where Tae-kyung is chased by a wild bore). Not only that, but “You’re Beautiful” happens to be the only show where I didn’t only have 2nd Male-Lead Syndrome, but I also managed to fall for all of the boys in A.N.Jell. It was hard for me to watch Mi-nyeo fall in love with one member because I loved them all. The only way I could get over it was by coming to the decision that I must date the other members that she rejects (I mean, it’s not like I have a boyfriend or anything).
Number 8. Gu Family Book
So, here we have another Supernatural Kdrama, but this one actually takes place in the Joseon period. “Gu Family Book” is an action packed drama that tells the story of Choi Kang-chi (Lee Seung-gi), who is half-man, half-gumiho (nine-tailed fox). Kang-chi longs to be normal, and so he searches for a centuries old book that contains the secret to becoming human. Meanwhile, Kang-chi’s world is in even more turmoil as the show’s villain, Jo Gwan-woong, stirs up trouble in his community causing pain to the people that Kang-chi holds closest.
Yeah, this show was definitely one that caused a lot of emotions for me. With this show, I must warn people to be prepared for the first four episodes of this show because there are so many things that happen. “Gu Family Book” is the only historical drama that I have on my list, mostly because all of the others that I’ve seen make me so dang sad. Thankfully, this show balances that sadness with comedy, action, and romance, while giving viewers an ending that left us with hope for the future of its lead couple. I really enjoyed this drama, but man do I wish they filmed a season two to this series. Also, the main male characters of this show are hot, like, RIDICULOUSLY hot!
Number 7. Reply 1997
Oh, how I love a good coming of age story. Especially when it’s done right, and “Reply 1997” is a great example of a show that does it right. Told in a series of flash backs, this Kdrama follows Shin Shi-won (Apink’s Jung Eun-ji), as she reminisces about her life as a teenager in the late 90s with her five high school friends. Due to its use of 90s Korean pop-culture, “Reply 1997” is a show not like many others.
While I may not have been a teen in the 90s or in Korea, “Reply 1997” is a show that still struck a chord with me. Growing up isn’t easy, and the characters definitely make you reflect on who you may have been as a teen. Also, “Reply 1997” had a great cast of actors, and the mystery of who Shi-won’s husband was had me streaming this show like crazy.
Number 6. Heartstrings
This is a Kdrama that I’ve always enjoyed no matter how many times I’ve watched it. “Heartstrings” is a musical drama that has kind of a complicated plot to explain. It basically starts out as a set up to a normal romantic comedy Korean drama. In the first episode, we are introduced to the drama’s lead characters: Lee Gyu-won, (Park Shin-hye) a college student majoring in traditional Korean music, and Lee Shin (Jung Yong-hwa) a college student who is the lead singer of a rock band called “The Stupid”. In normal Kdrama fashion, Gyu-won and Lee Shin do not get along with each other, but through a series of mishaps (including being forced to live together and working on a musical together) they begin to fall for each other.
Despite this usual setup, “Heartstrings” proves to be more than just a rom-com, as this show navigates themes of following your dreams, as well as the need to make the authority figures in your life proud of you. I really enjoy this show. It is super entertaining and it also managed to give me an unhealthy obsession with cute boys who play guitar.
Number 5. Strong Woman Bong Soon
Now, I must admit, my Kdrama top 10 list would be incomplete without this drama in it. “Strong Woman Bong Soon” is an Action/Crime Kdrama. It follows Do Bong-Soon (Park Bo-young) a young woman who was born with super human strength. When she is spotted using her powers to defend an old man from a group of thugs, she ends up being hired as a bodyguard to the spoiled and eccentric Ahn Minhyuk (Park Hyung-sik), who has been receiving mysterious threats . Things get even more complicated when kidnapping cases start to occur as well.
“Strong Woman Bong Soon” is such a great show. It’s both funny and action packed. Not only that, but it really gives me comic book super hero feels. This is also a show that doesn’t follow typical Kdrama formulas. Bong Soon can actually handle herself, which isn’t always the case with Korean Drama female leads.
Number 4. She was Pretty
This was a drama that had me hooked from the start! “She was pretty” is a Kdrama that follows Kim Hye-Jin (Hwang Jung-Eun), a woman who grew up with both looks and money, but later loses both of these attributes later on in life. Her first love Ji Sung-joon (Park Seo-joon) was unattractive and shy, but later grew out of that as an adult. These two decide to meet once again as adults, but Hye-jin’s fear of what Sung-joon might think of her new looks forces her to ask her best friend Min Ha-ri (Go Joon-hee) to pretend to be her at their meeting. This becomes a problem, however, when Hye-jin gets a job at The Most magazine publishing office where Sung-joon is the deputy chief editor! Complications arise even further when Ha-ri falls for Sung-joon herself!
Yeah, this show is SOOOO good! While romance is a part of the package in this show, what I really enjoyed was how it discussed issues that come from living in a society focused on looks. I also really liked how Hye-jin was a character who, despite once being very pretty, was never actually super conceited. This is definitely a show that reinforces the idea of loving who you are, and I think that is SUPER awesome. Not to mention, Siwon from Super Junior is part of the main cast in this drama, and he literally steals every scene that he is in!
Number 3. Pinocchio
Never did I think that being a reporter would be super bad ass until I watched this Kdrama. “Pinocchio” is another show that has a tough plot to explain. Basically, it follows Ki Ha-myung (Lee Jong-suk), a man who has a very complicated past. As a young boy, his life and family had been completely destroyed by the media, due to an incident that took the lives of a group of firemen in an exploding building. He ends up being adopted by a family in a rural area after being lost at sea, and changes his name to Choi Dal-po. Years later,Ha-myung decides that he wants to take revenge on the reporter who ruined his family’s name, but in order to do that he must become a reporter himself. This, of course, is a complicated situation as he has fallen for Choi In-ha (Park Shin-hye), who happens to be the daughter of that exact reporter.
Did you catch all of that? Yeah, it’s a show that has a lot of twists and turns, but I think that’s why I love it so much. “Pinocchio” is a show that shines a heavy light on the world of reporting, and I think it is done incredibly well. It navigates the theme of “Truth”, and its importance to a reporter. Also, did I mention the other catch? In ha suffers from a disorder called Pinocchio Syndrome, which causes her to hiccup whenever she lies. I love this plot point, because it forces this Kdrama to have a character that is completely honest. This makes misunderstandings with her incredibly unlikely, and I SOOO appreciate that. Also, I have a HUGE crush on Lee Jong-suk (just thought I’d put that out there…).
Number 2. Descendants of the Sun
Yay! It’s the show that brought us the Song-Song couple!!!! “Descendants of the Sun” is the show that gives me so many FEELS. It basically follows two characters, South Korean Special Forces Officer, Captain Yoo Shi-Jin (Song Joong-ki), and a surgeon from Haesung Hospital, Doctor Kang Mo-yeon (Song Hye-kyo). When they meet at Haesung Hospital, these two characters fall for each other, and start a relationship. Things become crazy, as they start dealing with each other’s insane job schedules, and they end up breaking their relationship off. Later, the ex-couple meet, once again, in the war-torn country of Urk, and soon they start falling for each other all over again.
Gah, this drama! What I think I enjoy most about this drama is how adult their relationship feels to me. There are no love triangles. There are no hot rich guys trying to woo girls with their money. It’s just a couple trying to figure out how to be together, while working the crazy jobs that they have. And they are not they only relationship discussed in this show! Sergeant Major Seo Dae-young (Jin Goo) and First Lieutenant Yoon Myung-ju (Kim Ji-won) is another couple that we follow (again without a love triangle). Not only that, but this drama is much more than a romance. There is so much action, and character growth in this show. “Descendants of the Sun” was another show that made me reconsider my career choice. Also, Onew from Shinee is in this drama, and I love his character so much!
Number 1. Dream High
And here we have my (possibly controversial?) number 1 choice! “Dream High” is a musical drama that follows the lives of six students at Kirin High School as they each work to debut as K-pop Idols. Among these students, we have: Go Hye-mi (Bae Suzy), an aspiring opera singer, who is forced to take up mainstream pop music to pay off her father’s debt owed to a gangster, Song Sam-dong (Kim Soo-hyun), a country bumpkin, who is a music prodigy with a rare disease, Jin-guk (2pm’s Ok Taec-yeon) a troublemaker, who has a complicated relationship with his father, Yoon Baek-hee (T-ara’s Ham Eun-jung), Hye-mi’s former best friend turned rival, Jason (2pm’s Jang Woo-young) an American-born dancer who wants to make his debut in America, and Kim Pil-sook (IU) a talented singer who struggles with her weight.
Whew! Were you able to follow all of that? This show was actually the first Kdrama that I have ever watched, and I have loved it ever since. While it isn’t perfect, it’s such an entertaining show. The music is amazing, and it is great to see the character growth that takes place throughout the series. Also, it’s theme of following your dreams is something that really strikes a chord with me, and I think it portrays the hard work that goes into succeeding very realistically. “Dream High” is a show that I will never get tired of watching. I love it so, so much, and if you haven’t watched it, you TOTALLY should.
Well, I hoped you enjoyed reading my Top 10 Favorite Kdrama’s list. This took, like, SOOO long to write, and it was a tough list to make. Let me know what you think of my list down in the comments and feel free to let me know what your favorites are as well.