Kdrama Beginner’s Tour: Young Love


Stop 2

Welcome back to our Kdrama Beginner’s Tour, where we are introducing all you newbies to the fantastic world of Korean drama romance shows! Our first post, Gateway Dramas, was your introduction to how addicting these Korean shows can be. Today, I’ll be showing you a sub-genre of Korean dramas that are plentiful, fun, quirky, and heart-hammering romantic.

Get ready for some…

Young Love

Playful Kiss


This classic love story has been adapted many times, from its manga version, to its anime rendition, and on to many interpretations, including the Korean drama I love so much. This is the story of a High School girl who must move into the house of a family friend after her house collapses in an earthquake. Except she finds out when she gets there, that she’ll be living in the same house as the very popular, insanely hot Baek Sung Jo. She has loved him for a long time, and sees this as her chance to finally get close to him.

If cold and unfeeling heroes make your skin crawl, you might want to skip this one. Baek Sung Jo takes a long time to admit his feelings for Oh Ha NI. But I adore the character development of this drama, and it is the real essence of a young love that matures into marriage. It’s also the most satisfying love victory of all time when Oh Ha Ni finally breaks down this guy’s iron-clad walls. No one else could love Baek Sung Jo like Oh Ha Ni!

Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo


What a delightful surprise this drama turned out to be! This drama tells the story of a young college weightlifter who struggles with going for the gold, but also finding self love and true love. The chemistry between Kim Bok Joo and athletic swimmer (I repeat, SWIMMER. The bod.) Jung Joon Hyung is really sort of palpable. I loved the pace of this show, and I felt like it was both romantic and sweet as a coming-of-age story.

The only thing you have to get past is that the actress does not look like a weightlifter. At all. She’s a model in real life, and she does look like it! But that’s okay, because her acting was on point, and the entire plot is delicious from beginning to end. I think I might have to lick sugar off my fingertips after even typing about it.

Reply 1997


I hesitate to post this one only because I haven’t actually seen it! But that’s not because I think it will be a bad drama–I know it’s one of the best Kdramas of all time! (Literally, it’s last episode broke viewership records!) I just haven’t been in the mood for a High School drama recently, and I’m keeping up with current ones!

But enough about me and my excuses. You SHOULD watch this drama. It’s a charming story about High School friends and their love lives as they develop in 1997, and then where they are at 14 years later. The cool thing about this show is that is has tons of adorable, romantic moments (yes, I happen to know that even without having seen it!), but it also strategically keeps you guessing about who ended up with whom, and how they got there! It’s clever, humorous, and poignant in all the best ways.

I will take my own advice and watch it soon!

Coffee Prince


Oh, this drama. I’m categorizing it as “young love,” even though the characters are totally adults. But there’s a lot of self-discovery, and the main girl is pretty young.

This one is about a young woman who has always been mistaken for a boy. She doesn’t particularly mean to look boyish, but that’s just how she appears, and she has accepted it. She is in desperate need of a job, and in a moment of insanity, takes a job as a MALE waiter, or “coffee prince.” But soon her manager starts to get some funny feelings about the new “boy” on his team, and their romance ensues.

I think my favorite thing about this drama is that their relationship develops almost entirely with him thinking she’s a boy, and at first assuming he just likes “him” as a younger brother. She falls for him hard, but she doesn’t want to lose her job and tell him she’s actually a girl!

The kisses in this drama are off. the. chain. You can spoil it for yourself by googling them if you don’t believe me. *fans face*

My Girlfriend is a Gumiho


Context: A Gumiho is a nine-tailed fox creature from Korean folklore.

This story is about a female Gumiho who has been trapped for hundreds of years in a temple. A young man stumbles upon the temple, and accidentally frees her. Little miss Gumiho, attaches herself to him, and although he isn’t totally sure he wants to help a nine-tailed demon learn how to human, he obviously falls for her cuteness.

And you guys, YOU will fall for her cuteness, too. Like, immediately. She’s perfectly quirky, and he’s adorably unfit to teach her how to actually adult, and the whole story was sheer enjoyment from the first episode to the last.

And that’s it for our “young love” stop!

I hope you enjoy these dramas, and if you find that this category really appeals to you, then you will be happy to know that there are many, many more! Including, but not limited to:

Boys Before Flowers, You’re Beautiful, Monstar, Heartstrings, Shut Up Flower Boy Band, To the Beautiful You, and School 2013.

If you head over to http://www.mydramalist.com, you will find several lists about High School and young love!

If you’ve seen these dramas, which one was your favorite? Any that I missed that you would want to add?

Stay tuned for our next stop: ACTION!



Kdrama Beginners Tour List

Gateway Dramas

Young Love Dramas

Action Dramas

Sageuk Dramas

Rest of the Best


6 thoughts on “Kdrama Beginner’s Tour: Young Love

    1. I went back and forth about adding it to this list…I felt like it maybe wasn’t for *beginners* really. It’s quite long, and you’ve got to build up some Kdrama tolerance for it! Maybe that was just how I looked at it. I both loved and hated Goong because of how frustrated but then happy it made me lol


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