The Unreality of Reality TV Reaches K-Dramas

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What’s real and what’s not is a big question, but one thing we know for sure is that reality shows are not real. Much of the action is staged, and many of the conflicts are hyper-exaggerated to provoke laughter or tears and generate ratings. Despite this obvious artifice being general knowledge, reality/variety shows continue to be very popular both in the U.S. and Korea.

Reality shows are so popular that they are moving into K-drama. Lately, these shows have even inspired a trend of fictional TV about the making of reality shows.

In the U.S. “Unreal,” a show about the Machiavellian schemes maneuvering a reality show styled on “The Bachelor,” scored big at several award ceremonies, winning honors that included Critic’s Choice Awards and a Peabody. K-dramas have taken the bait too. From the hilarious to the chill-invoking, several K-dramas have tackled the topic of the unreality of reality shows, using the topic to explore the bigger question of how one’s sense of reality is vulnerable. “Wanted” is the latest of these dramas.

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In “Wanted,” an actress is planning to retire and leave her unhappy marriage when her son is kidnapped. The only way she can ensure his survival is to film a reality show with missions doled out by her captors. The husband she is about to leave is the producer of the show.

The plot premise raises plenty of questions about the role of the media in tailoring what viewers think of as reality. Who kidnapped the child? Is the kidnapping real or a publicity stunt? Did her soon-to-be ex kidnap the child to make money? Who can you trust? Should TV shows give criminals the wrong idea by publicizing crime?

The drama, which stars Kim Ah Joong, Uhm Tae Woong and Ji Hyun Woo, has only been on for a few episodes but already plot developments have demonstrated that reality is all a matter of perception and that perception can be manipulated.

It’s not the first time that K-dramas have tackled reality shows from a dark perspective. “The Liar Game,” starring Kim So Eun, Shin Sung Rok, and Lee Sang Yoon, focused on the filming of a psychological survival game wherein participants trick and lie to each other. To win, you had to be a really good and confident liar. What’s real and not real? What’s the truth and what’s a lie? The contestants and reality show participants were often not sure what the truth was and which goals to pursue. If they were honest when they began the game, they lied to survive. The sinister game show drama kept viewers guessing until the very end.

Other K-dramas have tackled the reality show format on a lighter note. In “Eccentric Daughter-In-Law,” a fading K-pop star attempts to revive her image by appearing on a “We Got Married” style reality show. Only the singer, played by Kim Da Som, is paired with more than a prospective husband, played by Ryu Soo Young. She also acquires a prospective mother-in-law, played by Go Doo Shim. It’s a very traditional family and the fading K-pop idol Kim Da Som is not the daughter-in-law that Go Doo Shim’s very critical character was expecting.

“Producers” focused on the variety type of reality show, but there was plenty of staging going on in that drama too. While it mainly focused on the characters who made the program, it provided plenty of glimpses of the off-screen manipulation that goes on when producers film reality/variety shows. The producers, played by Cha Tae Hyun, Gong Hyo Jin, and Kim Soo Hyun, knew that their show needed ratings to survive and they worked hard to make it dramatic, placing characters in difficult situations and pitting them against each other. Called a “variety drama,” it was actually filmed by the variety department at SBS, rather than the drama department.

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“The Greatest Love,” starring Gong Hyo Jin, Cha Seung Won, Yoon Kye Sang, and Yoo In Na, was one of the first to parody a reality show. Also based on the real matchmaking reality show, “We Got Married,” the drama shows that true love can even happen in the unreal world of staged entertainment. That has not been the case with the real “We Got Married,” which has featured real-life couples but has not resulted in matchmaking a lasting relationship.

The reality show is here to stay. Part of the appeal may be seeing people react in real time to unexpected situations. Whether it brings out the worst or the best in participants, it has become a staple in prime time entertainment. Does it work in K-dramas? The viewers will have to decide.

What are your thoughts about the reality TV concept within K-Drama? Let us know in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on FacebookTwitterInstagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.

8 Korean Shows To Cuddle Up With This Holiday Season

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December is the holiday season throughout much of the world, and even if you’re not celebrating anything and Dec. 25 is just a normal day, there’s something about holiday films and television shows that just fit this time of year. Christmas in South Korea is more of a couple’s holiday and Christmas (let alone Chanukah or Kwanzaa) is not particularly popular in K-dramas and Korean reality shows. But the ideas of the season – being with family and friends- is easy enough to find. So if you’re with your loved ones, or trying to hide from them, this December it’s time to watch some of these seasonal Korean dramas.

”Winter Sonata”

The title says it all, but this drama is more than just about the snow. “Winter Sonata” was the start of all things Hallyu, or at least the K-drama portion of it. Released in 2002 featuring Bae Young Joon and Choi Ji Woo, this drama is all about first loves, memory loss, evil mothers, and all the good things that will take you off into a wintery K-drama wonderland.

”Answer Me 1988”

If you are watching this show, you know that the first snow is the perfect time for a kiss. And if you’re not watching it, why not? “Answer Me 1988” is a feel good, family-oriented drama filled with nostalgia. The characters don’t celebrate Christmas, but do celebrate the new year and it’s like the winter, and family bickering, never ends in this feel-good show.

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”She Was Pretty”

This and “Answer Me 1988” were two of the dramas that multiple members of KultScene’s staff just couldn’t stop watching this year. “She Was Pretty” put a large emphasis on the greater realm of relationships, which is exactly what you want to snuggle up with in the dark days of the winter. The lovable, laughable relationships between the characters played by Hwang Jung Eum, Choi Si Won, and Go Joon Hee is just the thing to make you value friendships during the winter months and holiday season, beanies and all. (“She Was Pretty” is also part of Viki’s 12 Days of Oppa, so definitely don’t miss out on all of their offerings!)

”You Who Came From The Stars”

The story of an alien and actress falling in love surpasses time and the seasons, but much of this drama takes place in winter months. A key moment takes place as the two main characters (played by Jun Ji Hyun and Kim Soo Hyun) freeze their butts off ice fishing. There’s support from friends, mysterious villains who could easily double for the Grinch, and just a lot of shiny things that look like they’d fit right in place on a Christmas tree.

”The Return of Superman” & “Dad, Where Are We Going?”

These two family-oriented reality shows aren’t dramas, per say, but… We’ll throw them on this list anyway. The variety shows are all about family’s playing around together, enjoying one another’s company. And the kids are freaking cute. You can watch summer episodes if the winter months are getting you down, but when these adorable children stars play in the snow with their dads… Our hearts just go to mush.

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”The Winter, That Wind Blows”

This heart wrenching drama about mistaken identities and disabilities takes a backdrop to the winter weather. The warm family relationships, and the lack of, will make you look towards those around you and appreciate all the good things in life. And you may even find yourself hoping that some of the jewelry Song Hye Kyo wears makes it way into a prettily wrapped box this holiday!

”White Christmas”

What better way to end this list than with something called “White Christmas”? But this drama isn’t all about the presents and religious aspects of Christmas. “White Christmas” may take place during the last week of December, but it’s also the least feel-good holiday cheer drama. Which could be the perfect recipe for some people! No, this 2011 drama is a school-based murder mystery featuring young stars like Kim Woo Bin, Sung Joon as more.

What’s your favorite holiday-oriented K-drama? Share your thoughts in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.

5 Korean Actors Who Can Carry A Tune Better Than K-Pop Idols

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When you see the phrase “actors who can sing,” famous examples such as Lee Seung Gi and Seo In-Guk immediately come to mind. Reason being, they are amazing actors and vocalists alike, but perhaps more known for their dramas than their released albums. It is hard to remember that they started off in the K-pop industry before venturing into the world of acting. In fact, these occurrences are getting more and more common. There is virtually no K-drama showing now that does not involve an idol actor, whether they are playing supporting roles or even having leading ones. All of this made me wonder whether there were existing all-rounded actors and actresses who could go against the norm, to debut as actors before entering the K-pop industry. Lo and behold, I found five of them.

1. Park Seo Joon

You might recognise this multi-talented actor from his currently airing drama “She Was Pretty,” but did you know that he can sing? Unfortunately, his releases have only been limited to drama OSTs so far, but he undoubtedly has a really beautiful voice. Not just that, there is also evidence of training in his voice because he controls it skilfully. He doesn’t just act with passion and emotion, he sings with it as well. Take “Letting You Go” from the “Kill Me Heal Me” OST for example.

In the drama, his character Oh Ri On has to make several painful and difficult decisions regarding his adopted twin sister Oh Ri Jin, such as enabling her romance with the main character Cha Do Hyun, even when he himself has romantic feelings towards her. This heartbreaking dilemma is portrayed perfectly through Park Seo Jun’s acting, but even more so through this appropriately titled OST. Even for a person who doesn’t understand Korean like me, his voice transcends the boundaries of language and makes me understand fully what he is trying to convey through the song. Park Seo Jun is a real gem in the making, and I hope that he will release more OSTs and even an album soon.

2. Kim Soo Hyun

This actor is still at the height of his popularity a year after his hit drama “You Who Came From The Star,” but there is more to his charm than just his acting. He is a great singer as well and has released OSTs for every drama he has been in, with the exception of his latest drama, “The Producers.” Kim Soo Hyun’s voice is extremely skilled, and he sounds very sincere whenever he sings. He also loves to sing randomly, as can be seen by behind the scene videos of his dramas. Even in the 2011 drama “Dream High,” his vocal abilities stood out amongst the several idols who acted in the drama as well, especially in his emotional performance of “Dreaming.”

It is already difficult to act well or sing well, but to be able to do both well is a feat that few can pull off. Kim Soo Hyun’s singing in the wrong key for the first half of the song was impressive to me, because believe it or not it is hard to sing in a different key from the music that is playing around you. Not to mention the fact that he had to portray his difficulties clearly through his expression and his singing, and when he did this perfectly it created an extremely memorable scene in this drama.

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3. Sung Joon

When I first watched Sung Joon in “Shut Up Flower Boy Band,” his raw acting captivated and moved me to fall in love with his character. As I downloaded and listened to the OSTs of the show however, his tough and gentle voice reached out to me even further. He has the ability to carry rock songs powerfully but also melt your heart with his sincere ballads. It is a comfort to listen to his voice because he sings so effortlessly. In particular, I especially loved his rendition of “Words You Shouldn’t Know” from the OST of said drama.

While not as skilled as the previous two actors mentioned above, he definitely knows how to express himself through his voice and has the potential to become an even greater singer.

4. Lee Minho

Perhaps the most famous actor on this list, Lee Minho is an internationally recognised Hallyu actor. He debuted as a singer with “My Everything,” but was never recognised by fans as a good vocalist. That was what I thought initially as well, while I did enjoy the song his voice definitely had lots of room for improvement. He did not have many vocal techniques nor did his emotions come through in his singing, much like his acting for that matter. This all changed in 2013, when he acted in hit drama “The Heirs.” The drama as a whole left much to be desired, but it was through this drama that I discovered Lee Minho’s astounding improvement as a singer, evident through the OST he released, “Painful Love”.

If I remember correctly, the first time I cried in this drama was when this OST was played. I didn’t like Kim Tan (Lee Minho’s character) at all, but when he cried so painfully in an empty apartment, it broke my heart. Those emotions are brought across perfectly through this OST and Lee Minho’s voice has become a lot more confident since “My Everything.” He is even able to reach high notes and create climaxes in his songs. The OST is very moving because his pain is so believable and it just shows how talented he is both as a vocalist and an actor.

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5. Jo Jung Suk

Ever since I watched him in “The King 2 Hearts” and “You’re The Best, Lee Soon Shin” I’ve been in love with this actor. And over the years, I can see how much he has improved in terms of his acting. As a vocalist however, he only has one OST under his belt but his natural talent shines through very well. “I Completely Love You” is an adorable acoustic song that suits his gentle voice, and the way he sweetly sings it makes his affection for Lee Soon Shin (played by IU) so believable. He has confidence in his voice and reaches the high notes effortlessly, which is perhaps aided by his background in theatre and various musicals. He also applies more vocal techniques than the other actors listed above and uses them smartly to convey his emotions.

He shows great potential both in acting and as a vocalist, while I’m happy that he is being given more lead roles in dramas and movies, I hope that he will receive more opportunities to sing as well. I want an album Jo Jung Suk!

Do you agree with the actors on this list? What do you think about actors who can sing?Let us know in the comments below. We’d love to hear you thoughts and don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, and Bloglovin’ so you can keep up with all our posts.

5 Tear-Inducing K-Drama OSTs Pt. 3

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4 K-Dramas That Need To Be On Your ‘To Watch’ List Right Now

4 Dramas That Should Be On Your 'To Watch' List

This is definitely the season for new Korean dramas, with three new dramas from different channels premiering on the same day last week. With the annual drama awards coming up soon, the competition between the dramas in their respective timeslots is heating up. Out of the many dramas airing at the moment, here are four exceptional dramas that need to be on your ‘to watch’ list right now.

1. “Twenty Again”

If you are looking for a new drama to encourage you and brighten up your day, this is the right one for you.

This drama is reaching the end of its airing, but for people who have yet to catch it, it is a must-watch for several reasons. For starters, if you are a person who enjoys watching romantic comedy, this drama is a perfect fit for you because of the adorable chemistry between the two main characters No-ra (Choi Ji-Woo) and Hyun-seok (Lee Sangyoon). What makes this couple a winning pair, however, isn’t just the actors who play them but rather the fact thattheir characters feel well-fleshed out and developed, which makes their relationship all the more believable. The strength of this drama’s scriptwriter (So Hyun Kyung) is that she is able to come up with an admittedly basic plot but turn it into an engaging and lively story, with well-thought out plot lines and character interactions.

This drama isn’t just about romance however. More importantly, it is an empowering story about how a middle-aged housewife, No-ra, can return to college and continue to pursue her dreams. It is heartwarming to see the transformation in her character as the series goes along, especially as she regains her spirit and confidence of her youth. Choi Ji-Woo fits this role to a tee, with her never-ageing beauty and her cheerful personality. Lee Sangyoon finally has a chance to smile in this drama, after serious dramas like “Liar Game,” and it is definitely great to be able to see his amazing dimples so often this time around.

2. “She Was Pretty”

If you are looking for body gags and a lot of laughs, this is the drama for you.

If you were a fan of Oh Ri-Jin and Oh Ri-On’s relationship in the drama “Kill Me Heal Me,” you cannot miss this show. This drama is centered around a magazine company with Hye Jin (Hwang Jung Eum) and Sung-Joon (Park Seo Joon) working in the same office. Not just that, they used to know each other when they were younger, and Hye Jin was Sung-Joon’s first love. As the title suggests, Hye Jin, who used to be a pretty girl, grew up to look very different. The conflict of this drama is born out of Hye Jin’s hesitance to show herself to Sung-Joon, creating lots of comedy and melodrama along the way.

The storyline does get frustrating sometimes when Hye Jin constantly hides her identity from Sung-Joon, but the characters are endearing enough to make this drama a fan favourite. A highlight of the drama would be the character of Shin Hyuk (Choi Siwon of Super Junior). He’s eccentric, handsome, and super caring. Although he is playing the second lead of the drama, Choi has been drawing a lot of attention for his realistic acting and at times has even stolen the spotlight of the other actors in the drama. His character may be too awesome to exist in real life, but it is well-written and developed. He also enjoys great chemistry with his fellow co-stars, especially with Hwang Jung Eum and Go Joon Hee, who rounds out the rest of this love square. With great performances put out by the cast and a fun storyline, this drama is well worth a shot.

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3. “The Village: Achiara’s Secret”

If you are looking for something to scare you at night, this is the drama for you.

Personally, I’m more attracted to dramas filled with suspense rather than predictable romantic ones, and ever since the promotions for this drama came out, I was super excited to begin watching it. Currently only two episodes have aired so far, but it shows a lot of promise and lives up to the high expectations created by the posters and teasers. So we have a mysterious village called Achiara (a fake Korean village) filled with even more mysterious characters, and the drama follows Han So-Yoon’s (Moon Geun Young) arrival in the village as a new English teacher. She encounters a lot of weird and creepy things in her first few days, such as being followed by a scary guy in the pouring rain, living in the house of a “missing” person, and finding a skeleton. All of these suspenseful and horrifying moments are played out very well with Moon Geun Young’s acting and the accompanying music, which just serves to hype up the tension.

What I’m loving the most about the drama so far are the supporting characters, the other people living in the village. Whether they are artists, pharmacists or school teachers, they all have complex characters and are all painted in a shade of grey;none of them seem to be completely good or completely evil. Of these characters, Yoon Ji-Sook (Shin Eun Kyung) is slowly becoming my favourite, for the sole reason that she has so many layers to her character. It confuses me but it keeps me guessing as well. There is an exception, however, with Park Woo-Jae(BTOB’s Sungjae), who plays a cheerful police officer in the village. He’s literally the only bright spot around, and Sungjae’s acting is definitely on point here. He’s an extremely promising idol actor and I hope his skills will improve over the course of this drama.

Also on Kultscene: 5 Tear-Inducing K-Drama OSTs Pt. 2

4. “D-Day”

If you like to watch “Gray’s Anatomy”, this is the drama for you.

The only reason why I was initially attracted to this drama was because of INFINITE’s Sungyeol, who is starring in this drama as a medical intern. When I started to learn more about the drama however, its storyline drew me in right away. Dramas or movies about natural disasters are not new. In fact, a setting of a natural disaster often makes for a good story and production. What is different about this drama, apart from the fact that it is almost entirely pre-produced rather than shot live like most Korean dramas, is that it doesn’t focus as much on the disaster as much as it does on how people from different professions and lifestyles deal with its aftermath. Although “D-Day” is essentially a medical drama, it isn’t just about doctors or the medical profession. t also glorifies the efforts of other heroes such as firefighters and the random kindhearted strangers. In spite of all the tragedy and cruelty depicted in this drama, there are also several heart-warming moments which, to put it dramatically, allows viewers to restore their faith in humanity. (Trust me, it’s not easy when you watch hospitals prioritize VIP patients at the expense of others.)

Another aspect I am enjoying of the drama would be how realistic it is. Don’t get me wrong, I know how unrealistic the portrayal of the earthquake and its aftermath (destruction of buildings etc) is, and I definitely can see how it is rather impossible for a band of doctors and patients to escape death narrowly so many times in a single episode. To me, it is realistic in the way it presents the moral dilemmas and hardships the characters face every single episode. In the case of Hye-Sung (Kim Young Kwang), he constantly has to choose which patients to treat and which to abandon, for the devastating reason that the hospital no longer has supplies. In their own way, almost every character in the drama has to face their own moral battles, but it is precisely through these instances that the characters grow and change. For a drama with so many characters, it is amazing the way the characters have continual development (so far, at least) and I hope it continues. The drama may be more serious than all the other dramas listed above but it has an important message and is definitely a drama that you need to watch right now.

Which K-drama are you watching now? Are there any K-dramas that you want to put on your ‘To Watch’ list? Share your throughts in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.

K-Dramas as a Window into the Realities of Korean Society

K-dramas, at times crazy and out of the world, at times melodramatic and tear-jerking, at times sugary with romance and heart-warming gestures, they are also at times very realistic in the depiction of real-life situations and problems in the Korean society.  K-dramas are an integral part of the Korean entertainment scene and have played a big part in the globalization of Korea’s culture. From realistic dramas such as Misaeng and the School Series, a lot can be learnt about the Korean society and their way of life, especially for foreign viewers like me who have not experienced this first hand.

The Korean society can be a materialistic one, as shown in a Reuters poll where more than two-thirds of Koreans considered money to be the most important sign of success. When Pope Francis visited Korea in August, 2014, he also urged the Catholic youths in Korea to go against the materialism that was present in the society, showing that Korea’s materialistic society is indeed “well-known” and existent.

Traces of this particular aspect of the Korean society can be found all types of dramas, from teenage rom-coms to makjang weekend dramas (dramas  with very dramatic plots, ranging from birth secrets to revenge, etc.) For example, in SBS’s currently airing drama, Heard It Through the Grapevine, Han In sang (Lee Joon) and his lover Seo Bum (Go Ah Sung) face many oppositions and challenges in their relationship from their families and parents because of their differing family backgrounds and economical status. This drama was even promoted as a black comedy to supposedly satirize materialistic ideas held by the upper class in Korea.

Another common problem in the Korean society accurately depicted by K-dramas is the wealth gap between the extremely rich and the extremely poor. These wealth gaps are depicted normally by “chaebol meets poor person and falls in love” scenarios in rom-coms. And through these dramas, these social classes and the resulting difference in lifestyles is also clearly brought out. Take the example of popular drama The Heirs. The drama is literally filled with rich chaebols, such as Kim Tan (Lee Minho) and Rachel Yoo (Kim Jiwon). In the midst of these rich kids however, there are a few poor ones, such as female protagonist Cha Eun Sang (Park Shin Hye) and Jeon Hyeon Ju (Lim Ju-Eun). The poor characters led significantly different lives compared to their richer counterparts, as shown by Eun Sang’s part time jobs and her mother, who worked as a servant in a rich household. Rachel, on the other hand, was consistently shown shopping extravagantly and her fashion was clearly more expensive than Eun Sang’s. In short, there is always a significant difference between the lives of the rich and the poor characters.

This problem is an existing one in the Korean society, due to factors such as the changing salary system, where a new ability-based system was implemented in efforts to improve Korea’s economy, thus increasing the income gap between professional and managerial workers. This can also be seen by the Gini Coefficient (measure of inequality of a distribution) for Korea, which increased from 0.256 to 0.280 between 1990 and 2013.

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 K-dramas and realities of society

Skipping away from the technical economics of the complicated Korean society, let us move on to a more light-hearted topic, high schools. Characterized by trends such as glamorous school uniforms and light-hearted romances, school dramas generally attract a younger and more fun-loving audience, but there are still instances in which the cruelty of real life seeps in. For example, a theme that is recurrent in School 2013 is that of the struggle of studying and the stress of getting into a prestigious university. The students in the drama attend school from morning to night and a few of them are constantly shown cramming notes and studying feverishly to prepare for their university entrance exams (Sunueng). An example would be the character of Song Ha Kyung (Park Seyoung), who has immense pressure placed upon her by her family of S University graduates. As a result, she studies all the time (literally, I kid you not) and even resorts to drinking a combination of energy drinks to stay awake and study more, eventually landing herself in the hospital.

This is an extremely realistic situation of the students in Korea now. The long school hours and all the time taken for studying leaves students with no time to think about their dreams and their future as they only have time to study. The reason for all this stress? According to an article from Aljazeera News, college entrance exams are seen as the gateway to a better future, and as a student interviewed in the article stated, it “can determine the rest of your life.” Getting a good score in this exam could lead to entrance into prestigious universities and the achievement of a high paying job and a potentially better marriage.

Another character in this drama that showcases the negative impacts of this study-inflicted stress is Kim Minki Choi ChangYub). Always a model student, Min Ki is a nice and kind boy, who has on many occasions helped his fellow classmates and teachers. His mother, on the other hand, constantly comes to the school to make complaints against the teachers and principals for the “poor teaching standard,” causing Min Ki a lot of embarrassment and stress. She also sends her son to attend private academies after school and even helps him cheat so that he would achieve better grades. Needless to say, this does not bode well with him, and after several years of submitting to his mother, he finally reaches his breaking point when his mother gives him the answer key for an essay competition. Unable to take the pressure anymore, he goes to the rooftop of his school and contemplates suicide. Fortunately for Min Ki, he manages to reconsider his decision and with the help of his caring teacher, Jung In Jae (Jang Nara), he reconciles with his mother and settles his problems.

Sadly, there are many students in Korea who are not as lucky as Min Ki and have succumbed to their internal struggles. This can be seen by the high suicide rate recorded of Koreans, which is at an average of 28.5 people per 100,000 people, one of the highest in the world, according to statistics from the World Health Organisation in 2013. Suicide is indeed the number one cause of death for South Koreans aged 10 to 30.

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When we talk about a society, we can never neglect the working class as they are the basis of a society’s economy. Perhaps the office life may seem too mundane and boring to ever base an entire drama upon, but as proven by the unexpected hit of 2014, Misaeng, realistic office dramas do indeed tug at the heartstrings of viewers due to its relatability and accurate portrayal of the problems in the society. Take for example, the problem of gender discrimination. This is especially poignant in the case of Ahn Young Yi (Kang Sora), who was initially one of the most promising and successful interns in the office before she was transferred to a department full of men who were biased against her. Although she conquered it and won their respect in the end, the lack of respect she was shown because of her gender is a real-life problem that many women in the world (not just in Korea) still face now.

Another real-life situation illustrated through this drama would be the importance of education in one’s career. The main character, Jang Geu Rae (Im Siwan) faced the problem of only knowing one language on his first day at work, as he was unable to answer and understand the calls made to the office by foreign businessmen. He was also looked down upon by his fellow co-workers because he graduated with only a high school diploma. In a direct contrast, Ahn Young Yi was able to succeed at her job because she was fluent in several languages was competent and had more experience as well.

There are plenty of K-dramas out there apart from the ones listed above that also depict several realities of the Korean society, and while some of them may be overly grim or too unrealistic, they are definitely still helpful for viewers to gain a better understanding of the real Korean society and way of life.

How accurate do you think are K-dramas in portraying real life? Do you think that K-dramas should even be so realistic? Share your thoughts in the comment section below and be sure to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr to keep up with all of our posts.