K-Dramas Saved My Life During Midterms

I can finally breathe a sigh of relief because Midterm season is officially over. All the hours of pouring over notes and lectures have paid off, but I can't say that I didn't have a little help along the way. It's good to take a break from studying every now and then; during my breaks, I watched K-Dramas (Korean Dramas). Korean pop culture has found its way into the United States and is slowly taking over. I certainly have no qualms about this, especially because of the excellent music and television that we now have the opportunity to explore. For those of you who are new to K-Drama, I find it's always helpful to start with a few recommendations before you branch out and find your own little niche. There's plenty of options to choose from, but these are some of the most popular. They are also my personal favorites, and I've seen quite a few K-Dramas at this point in my life. It has almost become an addiction but in the best way possible. Therefore, I am excited to share with everyone this list of my favorite K-Dramas, the one bright light in the midst of my midterm stress.

 

Boys over Flowers

I feel like a list of the best K-Dramas would be incomplete without this addition. This was the very first K-Drama I ever watched, so it has a special place in my heart. The plot is about as cliche as you can get: Geum Jan-Di is just a normal girl who finds herself suddenly on the receiving end of attention from four very attractive boys (known collectively as the F4) who attend a prestigious high school. Basically, it's the equivalent of a Cinderella story where Geum Jan-Di goes from rags to riches when one of those popular boys, Gu Jun-Pyo, falls in love with her. Thus, begins their insanely rocky relationship that endures all sorts of challenges: Jun-Pyo's arrogant mother, Geum Jan-Di's jealous "friend," and even a secondary love interest from one of the other F4 members (who I desperately wanted her to end up with). Trust me when I say, despite this brief synopsis, it is a show that will suck you in and hold your attention until the very end. 

Goblin

This may very well be my all-time favorite K-Drama (at least for now). I am a huge fan of Fantasy, and this show has that element in abundance. I mean, its title is Goblin, its main protagonist is the Goblin's bride and one of the other characters is the Grim Reaper. Confused yet? You probably are because this show has so many twists and turns that you'll find yourself questioning everything. Of course, at its heart, it is very much a show about romance, and the relationship between the Goblin and Ji Eun-tak is so incredibly beautiful. Just a fair warning: the ending of the show will definitely mess with your emotions; it's one of the few pieces of television that has actually managed to touch my cold heart. Trust me when I say that I don't ever cry, but this show managed to wrench a tear or two from me which is a big kudos because I wasn't sure what to make of it after the first episode. However, just like with other K-Dramas, they will slowly grow on you, and you won't be able to let them go.

Strong Girl Bong-Soon

This is my most recent binge, and the biggest reason why I started watching it was because of Park Hyung-Sik, the lead male character. Of course, I was also intrigued by the plot, which is quite simple: Do Bong-Soon has a very special gift that has been passed down to every woman in her family. From the title, you can probably discern that it has something to do with being really strong, and you would be quite correct. As such, it is also important to keep in mind that this special ability comes with a caveat: if you misuse the power to hurt someone innocent, it will be gone forever. Bong-Soon does her best to keep her power under wraps but accidentally exposes it in front of, you guessed it, our male lead who happens to be the CEO of a gaming software corporation. He invites Bong-soon to be his new bodyguard, thus beginning their adorable romance. Finally, at the forefront of this particular drama, is a police investigation into a man who has been kidnapping women from the area where Bong-soon lives. When our feisty heroine decides to take matters into her own hands, she tests the very limits of her abilities.

You're Beautiful

I am under the firm belief that this show does not receive enough credit. It has all the elements that draw me into a drama: a strong, independent female lead, a killer soundtrack and an original plot. Basically, the drama revolves around Mi Nyu Go who is trying to become a nun. Yes, you read that correctly, a nun. However, when her brother, Mi Nam, is unexpectedly forced to the United States to fix his botched plastic surgery, his manager seeks out Mi Nyo Go, his twin sister. Mi Nam has successfully scored a vocalist position in the band A.N.Jell, but because of his surgery, his sister is forced to pose as her brother for a month until Mi Nam can return. Cue various shenanigans when Mi Nyo Go goes undercover as her brother and joins the idol band. She meets all of the group's members who, in one way or another, start to fall in love with her, as they discover her real identity. 

Marry Me, Mary!

Do you remember my previous addition, You're Beautiful? Okay, so the male lead from that show also stars in this one. He also happens to play a musician again, though he is stuck on the independent scene and not nearly as popular. In this series, Mary, the lead character, is being forced by her father to marry someone she has never met before. Refusing to give in to this arranged marriage, she pretends that she is already married to Kang Mu-Gyul, a musician she accidentally runs into with her car. Striking up a friendship, Mu-Gyul agrees to play along; although, more often than not, he finds himself in quite the predicament because of Mary. However, Mary's father refuses to acknowledge their "marriage." He proposes that Mary spend 100 days with both suitors before deciding who she will choose. Now, there are plenty of other important plot developments to drive the narrative along, but this is hopefully enough to capture your interest.

 

Already a huge K-Drama fan? Which shows do you enjoy watching most?