Top 10 Korean Dramas For Beginners

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If you’re someone who’s been wanting to dive into this never-ending journey of K-Drama mania but don’t know what’s the right spot to start, you’re in the right place at the right time, my friend.

Here’s a carefully curated list of the most popular, binge-worthy, and extremely entertaining Korean Dramas that contain the very essence of the culture and live up to the hype. I’ve tried to include as many genres as possible. Enjoy.

1. Goblin: The Lonely And Great God

It is one of the most popular and well-known dramas in Korea. An immortal soul (Gong Yoo ) searching for a partner (Kim Go- Eun) who can take away his pain and make him mortal but ultimately falls in love? Sounds classic, right?

If, like me, you have prejudices about such fantasy television and haven’t seen Goblin yet, trust me when I say that this drama has so much more to offer. It is the perfect blend of romance and suffering but it’s also one of the funniest shows I’ve ever seen.

Rating – 9.6/10

Starring – Gong Yoo, Kim Go- Eun, Lee Dong Wook

No. Of episodes: 16

2. Crash landing on you

A South Korean heiress (Son ye-Jin ) accidentally lands in North Korea while paragliding, where she comes into contact with an army soldier (Hyun bin) who decides to assist her in escaping, and yes! They end up falling in love.

After Crash Landing On You became one of Netflix’s most popular shows in 2020, the company began producing and releasing more such K Dramas on their platform. The chemistry between the actors was undeniable and it made this show much more special when they actually got married in 2022.

Rating – 9.3/10

Starring – Hyun bin, Son ye-Jin

Number of episodes – 16

3. Hotel Del luna

Hotel Del luna is a 2019 TvN original fantasy series. Jang Man-wol (Lee Ji-eun) is the owner of this mysterious hotel, that only caters to ghosts. Gu Chan-sung (Yeo Jin-goo), a human, ends up working as the manager of this hotel, to fulfill an agreement made by his father 21 years ago.

The show introduces new characters with their backstory to tell in almost every episode which helps the audience connect to the show more. The acting of the cast is outstanding which makes the characters more memorable.

Rating – 9.5/10

Starring – Lee Ji-eun (aka IU), Yeo Jin-goo

No. of episodes – 16

4. True Beauty

A high school student Lim Ju Kyung (Moon Ga Young), who experiences bullying and discrimination because of her appearance, transforms herself into a stunning “goddess” after learning the art of makeup. This drama had the industry by a storm back in 2020. And why shouldn’t it.

A refreshing story, high school setting, a bubbly and loveable main character, teenage dreams, self acceptance, an iconic love triangle and an unforgettable cast? You name it, True Beauty has it. Most K drama fans would include True Beauty on their list of the top ten K dramas they love, including me.

Rating – 10/10

Starring – Moon Ga-Young, Cha Eun-woo, Hwang In-Youp

No. of episodes – 16

5. Imitation

This is a K drama that might not appear in any other of these lists because it did not achieve much fame or critical acclaim when it aired. However, the people who have seen it, praised it a lot. This story shows the journey of different idol groups as they try to make it big in the K-Pop industry and their ups and downs through it.

This show also portrays the aspects of this industry that are hidden from the fans and deals with several serious issues. So, If you are a K-Pop fan, consider giving Imitation a shot.

Rating – 8/10

Starring – Jeong Ji-So, Lee Jun-Young, Jeong Yun-Ho

No. of episodes – 12

6. A Business Proposal

Shin Ha-Ri (Kim Se-Jeong) is a single woman who works as a food researcher and is best friends with rich heiress Jin Young-Seo (Seol In-ah). She agrees to go on a blind date, pretending to be Jin Young-Seo, only to discover that the date is none other than, Kang Tae-Moo (Ahn Hyo-seop), the CEO of the company Ha-ri works.

This show gained extreme popularity in 2022 not just in Korea but worldwide and turned a lot of people into K Drama lovers. It was one of the biggest successes of the year and gave birth to a lot of memes and social media trends.

Rating – 9.8/10

Starring – Kim Se-jeong, Ahn Hyo-seop, Kim Min-kyu, and Seol In-ah.

No. of episodes – 12

7. Sweet Home

If there’s one thing that no one does better than South Korea, that’s making Zombies come to life. Not literally of course, but from “Train to Busan” to “All of us are dead” the Korean industry has never disappointed us with “apocalypse scenarios”. This show has some mind-blowing realistic graphics that might even give you nightmares.

The story is about a depressed teenager Cha Hyun Soo (Song Kang), who has recently lost his family and moved to a poor neighborhood when an apocalypse takes place trapping him and several other characters in that building, fighting for their lives. As the show continues, we confront the secrets hidden behind their lives and much more.

Rating – 9/10

Starring – Song Kang, Lee Do-Hyun, , Go Min- Si, Lee Shi Young

No. of episodes – 10

8. Hometown cha cha cha

Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha is a love story set in the seaside village of Gongjin. After unintentionally spending a day in Gongjin, Yoon Hye-Jin (Shin Mi na), a dentist, decides to move and open a clinic in this neighborhood.

In the beginning, she faces numerous challenges fitting in with the community but with the help of Hong Doo Shik (Kim Seon Ho), she overcomes these challenges and ends up falling in love with him. It is a heartwarming drama with an adorable couple that will make your heart melt.

Rating – 9.8/10

Starring – Shin Mi na, Kim Seon Ho

No. of episodes – 16

9. Weightlifting fairy Kim bong song

Weightlifting fairy Kim bong song is a coming-of-age sports drama that gained popularity amongst young audiences and is based on the life of Olympic gold medalist Jang Mi-ran. The story revolves around 20-year-old naïve weightlifter Kim Bong Song(Lee Sung- Kyeong), who is determined toward her sport.

She falls in love with a swimmer named Jung Joon- Hyung (Nam Ju Hyuk) and begins a new journey in life. This is a binge-worthy show with the cutest chemistry between the first leads.

Rating – 9/10

Starring – Lee Sung- Kyeong, Nam Ju Hyuk

Number of episodes – 16

10. Hwarang : The Poet Warrior Youth

Hwarang, a squad of warriors, receives training to defend the country amid royal politics driven by an ambitious Queen, who doesn’t want to lose her throne. This inevitably results in life-threatening circumstances.

For anyone who enjoys Period Dramas, this is a real treat for you. It is the ideal fusion of action, humor, and a dash of romance (And Bromance). And not to mention, the very iconic star cast, including the biggest names in the industry.

Rating – 8.5/10

Starring – Park Seo-Jun, Go A-Ra, Park Hyung Sik, Choi Min-Ho, V of BTS (Kim Tae Hyung)

No. of episodes – 20 + 4 specials

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