Pop Culture February 14, 2021
True K-drama fans know this: Once you’ve been pulled into the world of K-drama, it’s really hard (or actually impossible) to come back from it. One amazing Koreanovela is all it takes to keep you wanting even more. And we can’t blame you—these shows really do have incredible storylines, breathtaking cinematography, and noteworthy moments that make you either laugh out loud or cry and reach out for that box of tissues. Then, of course, there are the talented and attractive actors.
Although we hate to admit it, part of the reason why K-dramas are so addictive is because of all the insanely good-looking male leads in each and every one of them. Agree? Not only do they give us butterflies in our stomach, but most of the time, it’s in the way they tug at our heartstrings and make us feel more in touch with our own emotions that make us fall in love with them.
If you need a little inspiration to get you through this week, here are 7 K-drama leading men we definitely love having on our screens!
Before becoming Captain Ri Jeong Hyeok on Crash Landing On You, Hyun Bin became famous for his other breakout television roles such as Kim Joo Won in Secret Garden and Hyun Jin Heon in My Lovely Sam Soon. The multi-awarded actor is known for sweeping many of his fans off their feet through his acting prowess, versatility, and charming personality. His portrayal as a handsome restaurant owner in My Lovely Sam Soon who eventually falls for the broken-hearted pastry chef Kim Sam Soon (Kim Sun-A) is what solidified his name in our hearts. The fun but sometimes heated banter between the two as well as his knack for being the character with the quiet, brooding disposition display just how much Hyun Bin regards his acting roles. In Secret Garden, his character, an arrogant department store CEO, also made waves among K-drama fans, leading to the birth of the “Hyun Bin Syndrome” (which admittedly we also have!). Ironically, it’s often in his callous and arrogant roles that draw us to this actor. Perhaps, it’s in his desire to change for the better for the woman he loves that makes us realize how his characters are also human and are bound to realize their mistakes. And that, for one, is the driving force of what makes us love Hyun Bin’s roles so much.
Sweet, dorky, and adorable Park Bo Gum… need we say more? Don’t you just love the way he smiles on-screen and captivates your heart? He seriously has this unique way of making you feel like nothing can go wrong and that he’s never going to break your heart. You might have seen him in one of his most popular TV shows titled Love in the Moonlight. He plays as Lee Yeong, a noble Joseon crown prince, who unknowingly sets his sights on a disguised Hong Ra On (Kim Yoo Jung), thinking she’s a man, and tries to convince her to be a loyal eunuch herself. The romantic historical drama showcases Park Bo Gum’s more serious side. His other roles, namely the free-spirited Kim Jin Hyuk in Encounter and the psychopathic and aloof Jung Sun Ho in Hello, Monster prove his diversity as an actor. If you didn’t know it yet, he’s also a singer (he sang “My Person” which is part of Love in the Moonlight’s OST) and has won numerous awards for his acting roles. His kind-hearted demeanor off-screen as well as his hardworking side is what really shines through for his avid fans.
Starting his acting career at the young age of 19, Kim Soo Hyun since then has become a widely acclaimed actor in the Korean entertainment industry. His baby face and shy personality are what often appeal to his die-hard fans. His recent striking performance as Moon Gang Tae in It’s Okay to Not Be Okay garnered him the admiration of the world. The K-drama series focuses on mental illness and its struggles and follows the life of a man employed in a psychiatric hospital who chances upon the renowned children’s book writer Ko Moon Young (Seo Yea Ji). Suffering from Anti-Social Personality Disorder, Ko Moon Young begins her journey towards emotional healing with the help of Kim Soo Hyun’s character. His patient understanding for Moon Young and his innate ability to know when to give her space are the characteristics that make him more endearing to us. Kim Soo Hyun is also known for his other roles in Dream High and My Love from the Star. He is a very talented singer too who has performed quite a number of songs for the OSTs of the Koreanovelas he acted in.
From Boys Over Flowers to The Legend of the Blue Sea and The King: Eternal Monarch, the highly sought-after Lee Min Ho still seems like he has yet to show us everything he has up his sleeve. He is no stranger to the admiration he gets from his female fans across the globe. Down-to-earth, funny, and ridiculously handsome, he’s everything you could ever hope for in a partner. His breakthrough role as Gu Jun Pyo in Boys Over Flowers with his leading lady Koo Hye Sun, who plays as Geum Jan Di, made him an international success overnight. His gorgeous curly locks and bad boy attitude jived pretty well with Jan Di’s more meek and optimistic disposition towards life. The stark differences between the two contributed greatly to their on-screen chemistry. Lee Min Ho’s undeniable charm is also apparent in his portrayal of Lee Gon in The King: Eternal Monarch. Who could ever forget that memorable and romantic first meeting between him and Jeong Tae Eul (Kim Go Eun) in a parallel world, which led many of us to believe they were really destined for each other? Despite all of Lee Min Ho’s fame, he remains very humble and never forgets to show his sincere love for his fans.
Nam Joo Hyuk is probably that cute, goofy, and perpetually amusing boyfriend who doesn’t miss the chance to give you a good laugh when you’re down. The South Korean model-slash-actor is popular for the many K-dramas he starred in including our favorite Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo. His role as the ever supportive Jung Joon Hyung to Kim Bok Joo (Lee Sung Kyung) has melted our hearts and created his mark in the Hallyu industry. We don’t think we’ll ever stop LOL-ing at that famous scene with Joon Hyung where he “saves” poor Bok Joo from an incoming vehicle and instead gets her wet from the puddle on the street. The coming-of-age TV series resonates with the young audience as the two experience life and love while chasing after their dreams as college athletes. Even Nam Joo Hyuk’s outstanding performances as the narcissistic Ha Baek in The Bride of Habaek and the star swimmer Han Yi An in Who Are You: School 2015 do not go unnoticed. He portrays his characters well and always finds that good balance and distinction between his roles. This, paired with his handsome face and outgoing personality are the recipe for his being the perfect companion. In one of his interviews, he revealed that his love languages are words of affirmation and acts of service.
If you’re looking for a gentleman who would do anything in his power to make you feel comfortable and special, then Park Seo Joon is your guy. You all probably know Park Seo Joon for his role as the snotty, self-important vice-chairman of Yumyeong Group in What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim. But very much unlike his role, PSJ has a good rep among his co-actors and all the people he’s worked with. He’s warm, approachable, and exudes that air of sophistication for which a lot of women are attracted to. Did we also mention that he has amazing fashion sense and can also sing very well? Trivia: He actually sang Hwarang’s “Our Tears” and A Witch’s Love’s “Come To My Heart.” The guy is a natural-born superstar. Some of the other K-dramas we all loved him in are Fight For My Way where he portrayed as the swoon-worthy Ko Dong Man, She Was Pretty where he played as Ji Sung Joon, and Itaewon Class for his role as Park Sae Ro Yi. Park Seo Joon’s hard work, dedication, and passion for everything he does really just show that he’s worthy of the affections of millions of his fans.
Raise your hand if you’re still not over Descendants of the Sun. Five years after its release, we still find ourselves pining over the very friendly, kind, and caring Song Joong Ki. We just can’t get enough of him! And that’s thanks to his more than stellar performance for the hit K-drama series. When you think about it, it’s not that difficult to come up with reasons why Song Joong Ki is also boyfriend material. Case in point: His role as the brave and cool Korean Special Forces Captain Yoo Shi Jin has managed to gain him a spot in this list. His iconic cheesy lines alone for Dr. Kang Mo Yeon (Song Hye Kyo) like “You are already beautiful” and “Don’t feel embarrassed just because I found out that you like me. Even so, it doesn’t change that I like you more” make us wish he was saying them to us instead. He seems like the kind of partner who would do everything it takes to make you feel loved and special. Aside from this K-drama, SJK also shone really bright in Sungkyunkwan Scandal for his role as Gu Yong Ha and The Innocent Man as Kang Ma Roo. Song Joong Ki has always been supportive and considerate with the people he’s worked with. What many people also like about him is his genuine character and good manners. We think it’s safe to say that our love for him lives on forever.
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