Summing up the year with my personal top 10 Korean drama (Kdrama) of 2021. Since it was quite a list of dramas that I’ve completed, it is definitely a struggle to make the list out.
Weighing several conditions from the storyline, casts and their chemistry, production value, and more. This year there isn’t any dominating genre but a lot of drama that are out-of-the-box.
#1 – The Devil Judge
Dual male lead drama, the chemistry between the four main casts, Ji Sung, Park Jin Young, Kim Min Jung, and Park Gyu Young is beautiful. The plot is so intense and the build-up is unpredictable.
The drama is set in a dystopian South Korea. Kang Yo Han (Ji Sung) turned the courtroom into a reality show. Kim Ga On (GOT7’s Park Jin Young) is an associate judge who shines like a ray of hope in the world of injustices.
#2 – Happiness
Beom arh, Hyun arh… still ringing in my head. Amongst the chaos and intense situation, the little details placed in this drama are amazing.
The story is set in an apocalyptic world where infectious diseases are a new norm. The city hit its bottom line when the infectious disease hits them, people are suffering from unabated thirst. Yoon Sae Bom (Han Hyo Joo) and Jung Yi Hyun (Park Hyung Sik) are friends since high school. Now, Sae Bom became a strong solider of the anti terrorist unit and Yi Hyun is a smart and detailed police detective.
#3 – Yumi’s Cells
Adapted from a webtoon of the same name, Yumi’s Cells is a half animate drama that looks into the complex network of cells in every human. Yumi’s dominating love cell went into a coma after a painful breakup, only to be awake by a new matchmaking date, Gu Woong (Ahn Bo Hyun).
#4 – True Beauty
For those who avoid all romance or too off reality drama, this is not for you. But I personally follow the webtoon, therefore I loved and anticipated for it. Second lead syndrome hit me the most here.
True Beauty is a webtoon adapted drama that talks about the insecurities of a woman due to beauty standards. Im Joo Kyung (Moon Ga Young) was bully in her old high school due to her looks which almost drove her to suicide but saved by Lee Su Ho (ASTRO’s Cha Eun Woo). She moved to a new high school and start fresh, first by dolling up herself every day.
#5 – Imitation
Kpop fans out there, this drama is the one for you. Knowing the hardship and things they have to go through. The dark side of the industry and all.
Imitation is a drama based on the ever-popular K-pop industry and the main characters are living and breathing in daily. Lee Ma Ha (Jeong Ji So) is a member of Tea Party that was called off on the day they suppose to debut. She imitate popular idol La Li Ma (Park Ji Yeon) to gain recognition but gets on her nerves.
#6 – She Would Never Know
Did not expect myself to get too intrigued and be drawn to this drama. The revenge twist in the drama is understandable and not overboard.
The drama is a romance story between a sunbae and a hoobae. Yoon Song Ah (Won Jin Ah) is a brand marketer in a cosmetics company who inspires to create her own brand. Chae Hyun Seung (SF9’s Rowoon) has a crush on Song Ah which is why he applied for the role. Knowing she was betrayed by her secretive boyfriend, Lee Jae Shin (Lee Hyun Wook), Hyun Seung was caught not sure if he should let her know.
#7 – Move to Heaven
If you are looking to venture into a new occupation, something less common and might be a taboo for most. This is the drama for you.
The drama is about a young man with Asperger syndrome, Han Geu Roo (Tang Jun Sang) works for his father’s Jung Woo business Move to Heaven where they arrange items left by deceased people. After his father passed, he was left alone until an uncle came. Kim Do Gi (Lee Je Hoon) became Geu Roo’s guardian.
#8 – Taxi Driver
Full on drama about revenge, staying in the grey area but with a pure heart.
Taxi service that seeks revenge on behalf of victims who are unable to seek justice through law. The five members of the Rainbow Taxi include the former special forces soldier Kim Do Gi (Lee Je Hoon), the leader Jang Sung Cheol (Kim Eui Sang), the IT hacker Ahn Go Eun (Pyo Ye Jin), and the engineering duo Choi Kyung Goo (Jang Hyuk Jin) and Park Jin Uhn (Bae Yoo Ram).
#9 – Monthly Magazine Home
#10 – Hometown Cha Cha Cha
Heart warming drama that not only allows the main characters to shine, but every single actors in the drama has their own story and lime light which is so precious.
The drama sets in a seaside village Gongjin, away from the capital Seoul. A dentist Yoon Hye Jin (Shin Min Ah) seems to have her life together decides to move to the village and start up her own clinic. She met the jack-of-all-trades Hong Doo Shik (Kim Seon Ho) aka Chief Hong from Gongjin village.