Two binge-worthy k-dramas

Get ready to queue up some new streaming content over the December break Joseph Holoien

These two Korean dramas are absolute tear-jerkers

Why are Korean dramas worth your time?

Korean dramas are the result of South Korea’s expanding cultural influence. These shows are very popular in Asia and are increasingly more popular in North America due to major platforms like Netflix.

People see one and they just can’t get enough – though for some people, watching a show with subtitles takes some getting used to. I do it all the time, but for my family, it is nearly impossible to get them to watch anything beyond English.

I think three major things that keep people from enjoying K-dramas are their focus, energy, and interests.

Some people work busy days and as soon as they get home they can’t wait to throw on some background noise on the TV, or they view subtitles as energy-consuming and a bother. Additionally, they might just not be interested due to their own assumptions about K-dramas, or as a result of what little experience they have in viewing them.

If you find yourself one of these people I would like to challenge you to watch one or both of the K-dramas I recently just watched: Hi Bye Mama and Crash Landing on You.

The former is a bit slower when compared to the intensity of the latter, but both had my wife and I in tears. Disclaimer: if you’re scared of your partner crying, don’t watch Korean dramas. Second disclaimer: if you’re watching Korean dramas with your partner, they might be secretly crying.

There is something healthy about embracing the emotions that Korean dramas can foster within us. They show us things about ourselves and the people we watch them with as we share an emotional experience.

No spoilers here, but Hi Bye Mama is all about a mother’s relationship with her daughter. The main character, Cha Yu-Ri, is struck by a car while pregnant. She passes away but her baby is saved. As a ghost, she watches her daughter grow up and her husband re-marry until she is mysteriously brought back to life for a second chance. Prepare the tissues and cancel work. This show will consume you in empathy.

The second show is about a rich South Korean woman with a “crash landing” in the North. This K-drama will keep you desperate to see what happens and also blown away with the dynamic storyline. Honestly, this is a great show for anyone who says, “K-dramas are boring.”

Since it focuses a lot on North Korea, I wondered what North Koreans thought about the show, so I went and found what North Korean escapees were saying about it. Apparently it is pretty accurate in some ways, and K-dramas are secretly watched in the North. One video I saw said that North Koreans actually find the show intriguing because they get to see how the South views them.

I highly recommend these two shows, and whether you watch them by yourself or with others, prepare for the waterworks and a whole new addiction to and appreciation for Korean dramas and culture.

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