I have been in a committed relationship since 1 year 2 months and 21 days and every day I have fallen deeply, irrevocably and utterly in love with… K-dramas (Korean Dramas). After my first tryst with K-dramas, I am pretty sure I looked just as love-struck as Mr. Darcy when he confessed his feelings to his beloved Miss Elizabeth Bennett. It was on 3rd July, 2017 that I finally understood what he must have felt when he said the following words to Elizabeth- ‘You have bewitched me body and soul and I love, I love, I love you!’
But before I list down all the reasons why I absolutely adore K-dramas, I would like to share the story of how it all began.
It was a hot and sultry afternoon and after a long day at college, Kaajal and I hungrily devoured our lunch and settled comfortably on our couch to peruse that day’s newspapers. Out of habit I picked up the Bombay Times and directly opened the page to check my daily horoscope. After giving the rest of the newspaper a cursory glance I was about to reach for the Mumbai Mirror when suddenly my eyes fell on an article that changed my life forever.
The article was about the launch of a new online digital platform by Zee Entertainment- OZEE, which would entertain viewers by streaming popular TV shows including regional and international shows, movies, music and lifestyle videos that too free of cost. OZEE was also going to show, for the first time, a Korean drama called ‘Boys over Flowers’ dubbed in Hindi. Kaajal and I found the storyline interesting and decided to give it a watch. By the time we finished watching the 1st episode we were super impressed and couldn’t wait to watch the next episode. It was love at first episode!
Till that day I was not even aware that Korean dramas existed, and it was only through a chance encounter that I stumbled upon this whole new world that was so charming, captivating and mesmeric that instead of waiting for the next day to watch the next episode on OZEE, we searched online and finally stumbled upon another website that streamed all the episodes. Although the drama was not dubbed in Hindi, Kaajal and I were more than happy to read the English subtitles and within a matter of few days we binge-watched the entire drama and loved every minute of it.
Now having watched some 30 odd K-dramas, I am still as spellbound as I was when I had my first taste of K-drama. There are myriad reasons for turning me into a hard-core K-drama fan, and now in a bid to spread some cheer and joy, I am going to list down each and every one of them, hoping that it will convince you to enter this beautiful world that has the power to bewitch you, body and soul! So without further dawdling, let’s get you hooked to K dramas!
1. Story-line par excellence
If a drama has luxuriant and splendid sets, extremely good-looking actors, stylish and chic clothes, excellent camera work but an ordinary storyline, it is bound to tank. It is always the storyline and the plot that is the true hero of every drama. It is precisely the unique and super creative storyline that has made me a die-hard fan of K-dramas which has a plethora of genres ranging from romance, comedy, slice of life, thriller and also fantasy. If you love good quality content as much as I do then I’m pretty sure you will love watching k-dramas and will savour every moment of it.
2. Short and sweet
Unlike our Indian daily soaps, K-dramas are miniseries that have only 16-20 episodes, each episode being 45 mins to 1 hour in duration. The longest K-drama that I’m aware of has 50 episodes. This means that every K-drama is a finite series with no meaningless prolonging and superfluous drama to bore you. . Every episode is carefully crafted and deftly takes the narrative forward. So the good news is that bizarre plot twists that make you laugh in disbelief and tortuously stretched never- ending dramas that can get irksome are not a part of this deal. If the potent combination of brevity, originality and quality works for you, then you have found the perfect match in K-Dramas.
3. Ridiculously good-looking and talented actors
Every time I watch a new K-drama I’m stumped by the sheer number of good looking actors in just one serial. It’s not just the main leads, but almost every other supporting actor is a head turner be it men or women. Another thing that never fails to amuse me is the miraculous Korean genes. No matter how hard I try, I just can’t guess their age because they all look so young and there is absolutely no difference in the way a 20- something and 30- something actor looks. Not only do the actors play their parts supremely well, they can also sing and dance with equal panache and with every new drama, I develop a new crush on the lead actor. It is always a treat to watch these actors who act as remarkably well as they look.
4. Fashion hub
If you are a fashion fanatic who likes to stay on top of his/her game then K-dramas are the ideal spaces to assuage your modish cravings. Every actor is elegantly dressed from head to toe in all the latest fashion gear and this is probably because South Korea especially Seoul is South Asia’s fashion hub. Actors sport trendy attires and accessories which is sure to make you sit up and notice the clothes and jewellery pieces. Their apparel style ranges from classy to breezy to blingy but each and every one of them is sure to leave you dazzled.
5. Window to a fascinating new culture
It truly is surprising how one can learn so much about another country’s culture and tradition by simply watching dramas. While most of us are well-acquainted with the culture of the west we don’t know much about the lifestyle and customs of East Asia. After I began watching K-dramas, I learnt a lot about the Korean culture and I find many things quite endearing such as the way they bow their heads while thanking or greeting someone and how they always wear slippers at home instead of walking around barefoot. Food plays an important role in their culture with Kimchi (spicy pickled cabbage) being a regular side dish in every meal. If language could sound cute then Korean language is sure to walk away with the 1st prize. (You’ll know what I mean once you listen to the Koreans speak!) Having observed a few aspects of Korean culture I’m looking forward to visiting Korea and personally experience its vibrant and fascinating culture.
6. Mesmerizing Music
Every K-drama has a special OST (Original Soundtrack) dedicated to it just like our Indian Telly dramas and I must say they sound unbelievably good. Despite not being able to understand the lyrics, I’m still awestruck simply by the way it sounds. “Music is the only international language that needs no translation” and I can totally relate to this quote when I listen to any Korean OST. You have to hear the OSTs of Goblin, Scarlet heart Ryeo and Boys over Flowers to name a few to know what amazing and melodic music K-drama creates for its series. Also KPOP (Korean Pop music) is another unexplored world out there and BTS, EXO and Black Pink are some famous KPOP groups who create sheer magic with their music.
(The 1st video is Goblin’s OST -‘Stay with me’ and the 2nd one is Scarlet Heart Ryeo’s OST- ‘For You’. Watch these videos to find out why I’m waxing lyrical about K-drama OSTs.)
(Video Credit- YouTube)
(Video Credit- YouTube)
Now that I have shared all the reasons why I love K-dramas, in the upcoming posts, Kaajal and I will list our all-time favourite top 9 K-dramas. So if you’re planning to give K-dramas a shot, you can kick start your journey with these 9 K-drama recommendations that are bound to leave you captivated, intrigued and eager for more!