This year K-dramas have taken us to new adventures — from North Korea to the fictional world of startups — without leaving the safety and comfort of our homes. Here’s our list of the best K-dramas 2020 had to offer.
‘Crash Landing on You’
The year was off to a good start before the pandemic as “Crash Landing on You” landed in the hearts of many. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you may have heard of this Hyun Bin and Son Ye-jin starrer. We were swept off our feet by the romance between a North Korean soldier and a South Korean chaebol heiress who met in an extraordinary circumstance.
While some might argue that suspension of disbelief is needed to enjoy this drama, “Crash Landing on You” remains to be inarguably one of the most romantic (albeit fantasy driven) K-dramas by far. The simple provincial life in fictional North Korea, as well as the enchanting beauty of the Swiss alps, provided the perfect backdrop for the love story between Captain Ri Jung-hyuk and Yoon Se-ri. We also fell in love with the minor characters, including the charming North Korean soldiers and the sassy North Korean ajummas.
The popularity of “Crash Landing on You” lies heavily on its two main leads Hyun Bin and Son Ye-jin, whose chemistry is off the charts. Both are already stars on their own but they shine even brighter together onscreen. There’s no doubt that the two make the best couple in our best K-dramas of 2020 list.
‘Kingdom Season 2’
It took us more than a year to finally see the second season of the period horror K-drama “Kingdom,” and the wait was definitely worth it. Crown Prince Lee Chang (Joo Ji-hoon) and his gang are back to face-off with the undead and the ruthless Queen Consort Cho (Kim Hye-jun), who will do anything to get the throne.
In “Kingdom” season 2, the humans battle it out with the zombies, who are now more difficult to defeat because of the colder weather. It is also revealed how and where the infection started. The season finally culminates with an epic showdown in the palace, both against the undead and the queen consort.
Most K-dramas usually end with one season, and there’s a good reason for that. Most of these dramas do not generate enough excitement or subplots to last more than 16 to 20 episodes. However, “Kingdom,” with its six episodes per season, is jam-packed with horror, suspense, drama, and action, leaving us wanting for more. We see a chapter of the story ending in the season 2 finale. However, the epilogue set seven years after the great battle proves that there’s so much more to be told.
If there’s a drama that is most representative of the current generation and trends, that would be “Itaewon Class.” Park Saeroyi and his gang, with their street-style fashion, take the cake for the coolest bunch this year. Who would argue against Park Seo-joon’s trending chestnut hairstyle?
The most exciting part of this drama though is watching Park Seo-joon’s growth as an actor. We all cried with him when Saeroyi’s father died, cheered for him to get his revenge, and rejoiced with him when he finally got the ending he deserved.
There were several scenes bordering on the melodrama that might not sit well for everyone. However, “Itaewon Class” is a class of its own in terms of art direction, cinematography, and scoring, which is why it deserves a spot on the best K-dramas of 2020.
We have more on our list. Here’s the second part of our list of best K-dramas of 2020.