Cute, cheesy, and crazy…
Yes, that’s how I remember these Korean dramas I’ve watched last year. I hope anyone reading this would agree with me. I’ve enumerated some of them.
Spy Myungwol aired by KBS was a hit for me. Starring Han Ye Seul as the beautiful, kick-ass North Korean spy, she had a great chemistry with Eric who plays Kang Woo–a Korean Hallyu star that the NK wants to kidnap. HYS is a great tandem also for Lee Jin Wook who plays NK officer Choi Ryu. Though the filming of this drama suffered glitches, with HYS walking out in the middle of the dram, I found myself enjoying this rom-com. Its great that even after the controversial ‘spat’ she had with the director, the rom-com ended well and good.
Secret Garden, on the other hand, became popular in the Philippines after GMA-7 aired it on prime time TV. This fantasy-based rom-com may have been a little confusing for some with the constant switching of bodies of Gil Ra Im (played by Ha Ji Won) and Kim Joo Won (Hyun Bin). But make no mistake it’s a tear-jerker too.
Baby-faced Beauty also got me hooked. I may not be a fashion junkie but I loved the story of Lee So Young (Jang Na Ra) a 34-year old budding fashion designer who falls in love with a 25-year old university graduate.
Romance Town, meanwhile, is a story of housekeepers working in a rich household. This rom-com explores that rags-to-riches love story but with a healthy twist of greed apparent in the early episodes. Watching this K-drama made me feel like I won the lottery.
I won’t lie to you, but Lie To Me really got me bored at it during the first episodes. But as the rom-com progresses I find myself wanting to know how two successful career-oriented individuals find the time to overcome hitches in their relationship. Honestly, I watched this mainly because of Yoon Eun Hye (Princess Hours).
I wouldn’t forget My Princess even if I wanted to. This K-drama series really got me seeing Kim Tae-Hee (Iris) in a different light. KTH who plays an ordinary college student who suddenly finds out she’s a royalty. But she figures out that life as a princess can earn you fans and “anti-fans” and that she is no Cinderella, as she learns the heavy responsibility of being the nation’s princess. Also, I rooted for KTH tandem with Song Seung Hun (East of Eden) who plays “Mr. P” or Park Hae Young a diplomat who was put in charge by the South Korea’s president of educating our princess. This rom-com really led me into an emotional roller-coaster.
Man of Honor or Glory Jane was not originally on my list but after seeing my mom watching it avidly every Wednesday and Thursday night at KBS World, I got interested myself. What got me also into this drama was the fact that the writer was the one who wrote Kim Tak Gu or Baker King which I previously also watched. And I noted similarities to it. Though it ended on a positive note, still I think the ending was left hanging.
Apart from these K-dramas, I was happy to watch a rerun of the dramas of two of my favorite Korean actresses: Lee Yo Won’s Surgeon Bong Dal Hee and Go Hyun Jung’s Spring Day both on Arirang TV.
Watching SBDH made me think of American medical drama ER. This drama is about a first year resident doctor, Bong dal Hee, played by LYW, who strives to become a successful surgeon despite having a heart problem. How she and her senior boss Ahn Geun (Lee Bum Soo) finally ended up together despite getting off from a bad start is something you shouldn’t miss. It’s very heartwarming and full of life lessons.
Spring Day is said to be loosely adapted from Japanese drama Heaven’s Coins. It’s a story of a lady Suh Jung Eun (played by GHJ) who suffered a trauma so great that it made her mute. Two doctors vied for her attention: one who helped her overcome her past and enabled her to use her voice again and his step brother who was there for her when the latter lost his memory in an accident. It’s a heavy drama that makes you wonder if sibling rivalries would never end and if true love would finally be possible for a quiet and gentle woman. GHJ’s portrayal of that woman here is very much so different with her acting as Mishil, the cunning leader in Queen Seon Deok.
There are others, but I think I will reserve another writing space for those other Korean dramas I’ve watched 🙂