Top Webtoon Comics to Read

 

In the world of comics, whether it’s a graphic novel, a serial comic, or a manga (Japanese comics), the world of webcomics is sort of an underdog. Webtoon comics started in South Korea around 2003. The South Korean company Daum, was the first, and then Naver followed. Since 2010, other companies, such as LINE (which I’m going to be discussing here) started to release online comics and translate them to English. LINE, developed by Naver, is famous for its SMS app, simply called "LINE". What most don’t know is that LINE created a platform called LINE Webtoon, or simply "Webtoon", which releases translated manhwas (Korean comics) as well as comics from other countries. And the best part: it’s free. But then, you’ll wonder: how good can it be if it’s free? Good. This is one of the rare cases where something isn’t too good to be true. Here are my top picks:

 

1. Girls of the Wild’s

This manhwa is about a high schooler named Jaegu Song. The manhwa makes no reference to his father, but it does state that he and his two younger siblings (they’re twins), were abandoned by their mother. He lives a harsh life, working nonstop to provide for his siblings and go to school. The twist is, he’s the only boy in an all-girls’ school, because the school wanted to switch to co-ed, and he received a scholarship (you pay for school in South Korea). Being a poor student, he chose the school with the scholarship. It’s an interesting scenario because Jaegu developed a fear of women because of what his mother’s abandonment of him and his siblings. And in addition to this, the school, Wild’s High, is a specialty school for martial arts. Here he learns to become a boxer and develops lifelong friendships.

 

2. The Stories of Those Around Me

This manhwa follows the lives of Summer, Mira, and Jung-A, all friends, obsessed with the idea of romance. This manhwa has a soft spot with me because it’s realistic about love. Summer suffers from a complex situation because her boyfriend has a job with a top company, but it’s hard for her to get a job, much less keep one. She starts working in a coffee shop, and starts to have feelings for one of the workers. She leaves the job and pushes him away because she doesn’t want to cheat on her boyfriend. Mira doesn’t have romance, but really wants to. The story follows her as she gets a boyfriend and learns what it is to be in a relationship. Jung-A, whose story remains close to me, has lived with her boyfriend for five years. She takes lack of romance for them being comfortable enough to be together without putting in much effort; she doesn’t wear anything fancy and he doesn’t seem to care. But she has been ignoring the facts: he may be comfortable with her, but not in love, and his heart is with someone else.

 

3. Salty Studio

This manhwa, written by the same author as The Stories of Those Around Us, is the story of Taegun, an aspiring artist, who forsook his dream to work at his father’s company until he finally decides to follow his dreams. He quits his job and moves to an apartment to start a studio. However, he cannot seem to be inspired enough to draw. Frustrated, he goes to a party, where he meets Sonagi, another artist. He asks her to help him improve his art, with the deal that she can use his apartment as her studio as well. They begin to fall in love, but Sonagi is hiding who she is...

 

4. Orange Marmalade

This is about a world where vampires are hated and ridiculed because they used to drink human blood. However, the humans have made an agreement with them and the vampires now drink animal blood, but are still hated. If anyone finds out that a vampire lives near them, the vampire often has to move from their homes to another neighborhood and start life again, hiding who they truly are. The story follows Mari Baek, a vampire who stays away from others so that she will not be hurt or rejected. However, things don’t go as planned as she learns to make friends at her new school. While some of her friends have learned to get past their prejudices and accept her for who she is, she still worries about others. She meets Jaemin, a popular boy who hates vampires, but falls in love with Mari without knowing her true identity. Can their love survive her identity and his hate? (This was also made into a Korean Drama of the same name.)

 

There are some other Webtoon comics worth reading, but it would be hard for me to give a synopsis of these particular ones because the series aren't complete. Keeping this in mind, here they are:

5. Space Boy

This is one of the webtoon comics that isn’t a manhwa. It follows the story of Amy, a girl who moved from a mining colony in space to Earth. She meets a mysterious boy named Oliver, who is scared of “The Nothing” (that nothing truly exists). She tries to heal him and calm his fears but he suddenly starts to push her away. She tries to uncover his true identity and past so she can help him.

 

6. Dr. Frost

One of my personal favorites, this manhwa was made into a Korean Drama of the same name. The story doesn't have a general plot with one set goal. Instead, there are multiple goals to achieve, or in keeping with the storyline, multiple psychological cases to be solved. However, there are instances where the plot takes you into the dark pasts of the characters as they deal with personal issues. This is especially intriguing because even though they are talented psychologists, they cannot seem to reconcile their profession with the conflicts in their personal lives. It follows Dr. Frost (a nickname given to him because his hair is white and he has a blunt personality) and his assistant as they solve psychological cases.

 

7. Bluechair

This isn't a manhwa and it's really just a comedy strip that is funny and relaxing. I love to read it to pass the time and it’s very relatable. This artist, as well as the artist for Space Boy, is really interactive with fans and even does Q&As.

 

8. Super Secret

This is a manhwa which has conflicting love stories. Ryan, who is part of a race of monsters, loves Emma, but she doesn’t know he’s a werewolf. He encounters competition when another boy, Victor, a “pureblood” starts to date Emma; but Victor has a dark past and a plan for the future.

 

9. Winter Woods

This is about Winter, a boy created by an alchemist who feels no pain and has no emotions. The scientist testing him takes him to live with Jane, an aspiring writer whose book keeps on getting rejected. It follows Winter’s developing emotions and romantic love for Jane and how her writing is inspired by Winter.

 

10. unOrdinary

This story is about John, a “cripple,” a person who has no magical powers in a world where the hierarchical structure is based on magical abilities. He must learn to get through life without any magic to protect him. It also follows his friend Seraphina as she learns to count on her magical abilities less and appreciate people regardless of whether or not they have magical powers.

 

11. Noblesse

Since this manhwa is too awesome for me to summarize, I'll quote the summary found on LINE Webtoon: “Rai wakes up from [a] 820-years long sleep and starts his new life as a student in a high school founded by his loyal servant, Frankenstein. But his peaceful days with other human students are soon interrupted by mysterious attackers known as ‘Unions.’”

 

12. Cheese in the Trap

I wrote a synopsis of this in my article about top Korean Dramas. Click here to check it out.

 

13. Tales of the Unusual

There’s one word for this: scary. So if you’re into that kind of stuff, this manhwa is very promising. It has no general plot- instead there are multiple unrelated stories. It’s also interesting because there always seems to be wise advice behind these scary stories.

You can read Webtoons without signing up, but in order to bookmark where you left off, download the comic, or subscribe and comment you would need to login. You can create a login using the LINE app login or you can sign in through Facebook. LINE Webtoon also translates the comics into languages other than English, so if you feel more comfortable reading in a certain language, then you will most likely be able to do so. Enjoy the read! Once you start, you’ll never stop.

For more webcomic suggestions, check out this article.

 

Images: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

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