My Introduction to Korean Dramas (한국드라마)

korean drama

I don’t know why it took me so long to get into Korean dramas, but I am now deeply enamoured with the genre and have been watching them non-stop throughout the lockdown. Not only is it helping me learn Korean, but they’re just so much fun! The romance is always top notch, the acting is superb, and as a lady who needs bad-ass action scenes in everything, these shows more than provide.

I’ve written up long reviews of Crash Landing on You, Suspicious Partner and When the Camellia Blooms, but all of these deserve their own posts, honestly. And I’m going to try and write up some longer reviews for them when I can.

I’m now almost done with Oh My Venus and My Secret Terrius, which I’m loving. Both have So Ji-sub and he’s definitely one of my new favourite actors. No one enters an action scene like him! (Except maybe Ji Chang-wook, haha.) The action scenes in these shows are just so satisfying to watch.

*All of these are available on (Irish) Netflix, but I think they’re pretty widely available in most countries.*

The K2 (더 케이투) – [action, politics, romance] This one follows a framed soldier-turned-mercenary-turned-bodyguard as he protects a wealthy family with nefarious intentions. The romance and political intrigue in this was great, but the action scenes were by far the best. SUCH GOOD ACTION SCENES.

Suspicious Partner (수상한 파트너) – [romance, comedy, drama, mystery] My review. If you like adorable courtroom dramas with a touch of action, this one’s for you.

Because This is My First Life (이번 생은 처음이라) – [romance, drama] My (short) review. This show is actually one of my top favs despite the short review. It’s really, really good and the relationships are wonderful.

Doctors (닥터스) – [romance, medical drama] This one follows a troubled student who becomes a doctor and the mentor who becomes her co-worker years later. I haven’t finished it yet, but I’m really enjoying the main character. She’s such a legend (and throws quite the punch)!

Descendants of the Sun (태양의 후예) – [romance, military drama, action] Two Special Forces soldiers are sent to Uruk and are joined by a group of doctors. The angst in this one is wonderful, the friendships are so great, and the awesome brotps are fierce.

My Secret Terrius (내 뒤에 테리우스) – [romance, action, comedy, drama] I am loving this one. When a young mother to twins is left widowed, her strange neighbour offers to be her babysitter as he tries to unravel the mysterious circumstances surrounding her husband’s death. This one is just pure fluff at times and I am HERE. FOR. IT.

Oh My Venus (오 마이 비너스) – [romance, drama] After passing out on a plane from a toxic combination of diet pills and an untreated thyroid condition, a lawyer joins a trio of fitness enthusiasts who help her get healthy and fit.

Crash Landing on You (사랑의 불시착) – [romance, politics, drama] My review. My first ever Korean drama and still one of my top favs. Just start this one right now!

When the Camellia Blooms (동백꽃 필 무렵) – [romance, mystery, drama] My review. A cosy, smalltown mystery show with the cutest of characters.

Vagabond (배가본드) – [action, politics, touch o’ romance]  This one is super intense. The chase scenes are some of the best ever. The story follows Cha Dal-gun, a former stuntman as he tracks down those responsible for the death of his nephew.

Something in the Rain (밥 잘 사주는 예쁜 누나) – [romance, drama] This is a quiet, lovely show that follows the romance between a woman in her thirties and a man in his twenties, and the judgements they get from their friends and family. I started this one for Son Ye-jin, but Jung Hae-in totally stole the show.


If anyone has any Korean drama recommendations, definitely link me! For once I have the time to watch new television, so I may as well watch them all 😉

Show Review: Crash Landing on You (2019)

show_film review (1)

Crash Landing on You is a new(ish) Netflix show, and I AM IN LOVE. It’s a spin on the classic star-crossed lovers story and one I totally, totally recommend. It follows Yoon Se-ri (played by Son Ye-jin) and Ri Jeong-hyeok (played by Hyun Bin) after Se-ri, a South Korean woman, ends up in North Korea after a paragliding accident sends her over the border.

Right, so Se-ri is a successful businesswoman from Seoul, the head of an international company, multi-millionaire; and Jeong-hyeok, the man who finds her, is a captain in the army. He stumbles upon her in the woods after she crashes, and tries to bring her in to his superiors, but ends up getting stuck and she escapes. Se-ri manages to elude him for a time, only to find her way to his village where he finds her again. (The jokes they make about destiny later are so true!)

Jeong-hyeok wants to turn her in, but she threatens to report his crew for not doing their jobs properly (one was drinking, one was watching a South Korean television show while on watch, etc.) and he begrudgingly agrees to hide her until she can leave the country. Unfortunately, Se-ri’s caught fairly early on by soldiers, and he’s forced to spin a story that she’s his fiancée to save her life. Jeong-hyeok soon enlists his soldiers – Kim Ju-muk, Pyo Chi-su, Park Kwang-beom and Geum Eun-dong – to help him get Se-ri home, and they quickly grow to adore her.

There are numerous storylines going at once outside of the main romance storyline: Se-ri’s older brothers want their father’s company and hate their sister’s success; Jeong-hyeok’s brother Ri Moo-hyeok died before the series begins and the mystery of what happened slowly unfolds in the background; and Seo Dan, an heiress who’s spent most of her life studying music in Russia, was arranged to be married to Jeong-hyeok, only to return at just the wrong time. There’s also Jeong Man-bok, who has history with Moo-hyeok and knows something about his death; Cho Cheol-gang, who hates Jeong-hyeok and wants to ruin him; and Gu Seung-joon, an exile who knows Se-ri and befriends Seo Dan. (Like I said, there’s a lot of plot.) 

I love the little moments the most: the found family aspect of the soldiers and Se-ri; the flashbacks to the brothers; the bond and solidarity of the village women who befriend Se-ri; and the loyalty of Se-ri’s team manager and insurance agent, who are determined to find her and bring her home. There’s a level of kindness and love to the show that’s in the quiet moments and made me tear up frequently. It offsets the darker, grittier moments. Seriously, I cried so many times watching this show. But there are also great action moments – a car chase, lots of fighting, even more running, etc. It’s impossible not to be on the edge of your seat the entire time.

One of my favourite parts about Se-ri and Jeong-hyeok’s relationship is that they both spend the time actually trying to look out for each other. There’s no selfishness between them, no unnecessary drama or chaos. They fall in love, they know the reality of their circumstances, and they have very understandable reactions. They’re such OTP material, it’s insane. I JUST LOVE THEM. (/◕ヮ◕)/

I want to give a shout out to the fashion, too. Se-ri’s outfits are stunning, and Jeong-hyeok rocks some serious style. Without question, the fashion in the show is lush. The cinematography in general is also on point and there were so many moments where I was so wowed by the views. Lovely, lovely, lovely.

I totally recommend this show to everyone! It’s utterly romantic, but not over the top or cheesy, and the characters are given such great backstories and plots. I’m a few episodes from the end and I can’t wait to see how it all wraps up!