Top 12 Recommended Korean Dramas for 2023! From popular classics to the latest productions!

In recent years, Korean dramas have become readily available through distribution services such as Netflix, U-NEXT, and Amazon Prime Video. However, it is often difficult to decide which ones to watch. Therefore, we have created a ranking! We'll explain everything from the 2023 classics to the latest releases, so be sure to check them out.

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Top 3 Recommended Popular Korean Dramas by Genre

Top 3 Recommended Popular Love Dramas

1 Love's Emergency Landing
2019
2 The Red Sleeve Tip"
2021
3 The Year We Were
Year 2021

Recommended Top 3 Popular Suspense Korean Dramas

1 The Penthouse
2020-2021
2 The Trial of a Minor
2022
3 Vagabond
2019

Recommended Top 3 Popular >Human Korean Dramas

1 The Smart Doctor's Life
2020 , 2021
2 Misen
2014
3 My Dear Mr. - My Uncle
2018

Recommended Top 3 Latest Korean Dramas

1 The Sisters
2022
2 Shulp
2022
3 Golden Spoon
2022

No. 1 "The Emergency Landing of Love" (2019)

愛の不時着 | Netflix (ネットフリックス) 公式サイト

Hyun Bin loss after Hyun Bin loss! A story about love that transcends the North-South barrier

Main Cast. Hyun Bin, Seo Ye Jin
Number of episodes 16 episodes (each episode runs approximately 80 minutes)
Genre Romantic Comedy

Synopsis

Yoon Se-ri is a professional woman, the daughter of a Korean conglomerate and a businesswoman. One day, while flying a paraglider for product testing, she gets caught in a tornado and crashes into North Korea. She is rescued by Lee Jung-hyuk, a North Korean soldier she met by chance, and hides her identity by taking shelter at his house. ......

Highlights

A royal love story about the "unforgivable love" between a Korean and a North Korean. Hyun Bin and Son Ye Jin are already a couple in real life, and their love scenes are not to be missed. There is also a heartwarming scene at the end of each episode, so don't miss it until the end! Although this is a romantic drama, the realistic depiction of the situation in North Korea and the inner workings of the military, as well as the many action scenes, make it an enjoyable watch for men as well. The four subordinates of Lee Jung Hyuk, an elite North Korean soldier played by Hyun Bin, are also one of the highlights! They are full of individuality, including Jumok, a big fan of Choi Ji-woo, and Gwang-beom, the handsome guy in charge, whose interactions with Yoon Se-ri (Son Ye-jin) are most interesting.

No. 2 "Red Sleeve Tips" (2021)

赤い袖先」ドラマ公式サイト

A new type of period drama depicting the sad yet beautiful love between a man and a woman

Main Cast Lee Juno (2PM) , Lee Se-yeon
Number of episodes 17 episodes (each episode is about 70 minutes)
Genre Love , Human Drama

Synopsis

In the early 17th century, Lee San, a prince of the Joseon Dynasty, has lived alone ever since his father was forced to die by his grandfather. Meanwhile, Song Duk-in, who has been a courtesan since childhood, has grown into a remarkable woman who spends her days thinking about her life. One day, these two fatefully meet and fall in love. However, both Sun and Duk-kee-shin have other priorities than love. This is a tragic love story of a man and woman trying to protect their lives and their country, despite being at the mercy of power struggles and other factors.

Highlights

Although the film is based on historical facts, the meaning of the picture on the poster and the catchphrase can only be understood by those who have seen the film to the end. The ending can be seen as either happy or sad depending on how you feel, and it is such a popular theme that the term "sad ending" has been coined. The ability to make various predictions and interpretations is one of the main attractions of this film, and even though it is a historical drama, many people end up watching it in one sitting because they are curious about the backstory.

No. 3 "That Year We Are" (2021)

韓流]ドラマ「その年、私たちは」 ネトフリ世界9位 | 聯合ニュース

Two former high school sweethearts who appeared in a documentary reunite! Two opposites who are attracted to each other.

Main Cast Choi Woo-shik , Kim Dami
Number of episodes 16 episodes (each episode is approximately 60 minutes)
Genre Love , Comedy

Synopsis

Former high school documentary film co-stars Kuk Yeon-su (Kim Dami) and Choi Eun (Choi Woo-shik) have gone their separate ways, but Eun suddenly returns home and reunites with Yeon-su for the first time in five years. Yong-su arrives and proposes a joint project, but Eun is unable to approach him. Kim Ji-eun (Kim Sung-chul), who shot a documentary about the two of them in high school, tries to convince him to shoot another documentary about Yong-su and Eun. ............

Highlights.

The story, art, and OST are stylish and subtle. Some people are deeply absorbed in its worldview. The fact that the writer and director are new means that they are of the same generation as the show's main audience (in their 20s and 30s). This way, the sensibilities of the audience and the creator can be in sync, and the work can remain in the hearts of those who watch it. Kim Dami's performance is also a highlight. She is similar to Isao in "Itaewon Class" in terms of her strict character, but still manages to make Yeon-soo a completely different woman and an appealing character. Meanwhile, Choi Woo-shik also shows off his charm in a variety of acting roles, from his puppy-like appearance to the serious expression on his face when he paints. Good friend BTS V also participates in the OST, and V's gentle singing voice fits the atmosphere of the movie perfectly!

No. 4 "Penthouse" (2020)

韓国ドラマ「ペントハウス」​ - 番組一覧 | アジアドラマチックTV(アジドラ)公式サイト

Educational war and love-hate drama set in a 100-story tower apartment building

Main Cast Yoo Jin , Lee Jia , Kim So Yeon , Ohm Ki Joon
Number of episodes 21 episodes (each episode runs approximately 75 minutes)
Genre Suspense , Love-Hate Drama

The drama "Penthouse" won nine awards at the 2020 SBS Acting Awards. Written by Kim Seung-ok of "The Dignity of the Empress" fame, this highly anticipated drama recorded an instantaneous highest rating of 31.1% and became a social phenomenon. It is a story of educational warfare, pride, and love/hate that takes place in the "Hera Palace," a 100-story tower apartment building in an upscale residential area of Seoul. The main cast consists of Lee Jia, Kim So-yeon, and Yoo-jin, who together won the Best Actress Award at the SBS Acting Awards.

Synopsis.

A woman falls to her death in "Hera's Palace," where property values and the education of her children reached the highest level. Time goes back, two months ago. Rona had applied to the vocal department of the prestigious Albanian Central High School of Arts, but her mother Uni, who was raising her as a single mother, was very much against it. Indeed, Yuni had also aspired to become a vocalist, but her dream was thwarted by Seojin, the daughter of a conglomerate. The feuding rivals are reunited when Rona requests lessons from Seo-jin, who has become a voice teacher. Rona manages to get into the school of her choice, but Seo-jin's daughter is there too. ......

No. 5 "Underage Trial" (2022)

韓国ドラマ「未成年裁判」実際の事件がモチーフ!6話から10話(最終話) あらすじ・ネタバレ・感想 | 映画・ドラマを動画配信で見放題!  あらすじ・感想・ネタバレブログ

An unparalleled film dedicated to "juvenile crime." Also, watch out for Kim Hye-soo's impassioned performance!

Main Cast Kim Hye-su , Kim Mu-yeol , Lee Sung-min
Number of episodes 10 episodes (each episode is approximately 60 minutes)
Genre Human drama

Juvenile delinquency is not only a problem within Korea, but also the entire world. By showing the various perspectives of the judges who are the characters in the film, it makes the viewer think about difficult issues. One of the highlights of this film is the performance of the female lead, Kim Hye-soo. Despite her trauma, she puts her body on the line as a female judge who confronts youth crime head-on. Also not to be missed is Lee Sung Min, who gave a fine performance in "Misen" (2014), this time as a powerful boss. The powerful performances of the other characters are also noteworthy.

Synopsis.

Shim Eun-seok is a juvenile court judge who judges boys and girls on a daily basis and has a strong aversion to juvenile delinquency. He is sometimes called "the devil's judge" for his ruthless and harsh trials. One day, a boy is murdered and one of the boys turns himself in. The boy is not remorseful for being a minor. How would Eunseok sentence him? Contrary to Eun-seok, his colleague Cha Tae-joo, who wishes to rehabilitate the boy, and his boss Kang Won-jung, a judge who stands up against juvenile delinquency, appear in this human drama.

No. 6 "Vagabond" (2019)

韓国ドラマ] イ・スンギ×スジ 主演 「バガボンド」 – 韓国エンタメ・トレンド情報サイトKOARI(コアリ)

Spy suspense, reuniting Lee Seung-ki and Bae Su-ji of "The Book of the Nine Family" fame.

Main Cast. Lee Seung Gi , Bae Suji , Shin Sung Rok
Number of episodes 16 episodes (each episode is approximately 60 minutes)
Genre Suspense , Action

Lee Seung Gi and Bae Suji, who co-starred in "The Book of the Nine Family" (2013), take on full-fledged action in the spy thriller "The Wanderer," airing on SBS in 2019 and available on Netflix Japan the same year! Lee Seung Gi plays Cha Dal Gong, a stuntman who loses his nephew in a passenger plane crash, while Bae Suji portrays the two men as they are drawn to each other and solve the mystery of the crash.

Synopsis.

Cha Dargon, a stuntman, loses his nephew in the crash of a passenger plane bound for Morocco. When his nephew's camera shows a suspicious figure, Dargon begins to suspect that the accident was caused by terrorism. He tells his family, who have lost loved ones, about the accident, but their incredulous stories cause an uproar. Meanwhile, Ko Heli, an investigator for the National Intelligence Agency who was working in Morocco, senses that Dagon's story may be true, and the two of them decide to pursue the truth about the accident. ......

No. 7 "The Wise Doctor's Life" (2020 , 2021)

Netflix韓国で連日1位の『賢い医師生活』 異例づくしの人気ドラマが行った“新しい試み”とは?|Real Sound|リアルサウンド 映画部

Season 2 is also available! Work drama about the daily lives of doctors.

Main Cast Jo Jung-suk, Yoo Yeon-seok, Jeong Kyung-ho
Number of episodes Season 1: 12 episodes (approx. 80 min. per episode) Season 2: 12 episodes (approx. 100 min. per episode)
Genre Medical , Human

Synopsis

Five male and female medical students meet at a university medical school and develop a strong friendship. Each became a doctor and kept busy after graduation. Nearly 20 years later, all five are working at the same hospital. Doctors fighting to save patients are still human beings. The film depicts the daily lives of these young doctors with laughter, tears, and worries.

Highlights

The five best friends and colleagues of "99s" are all here! They are all attractive not only as doctors but also as human beings. Especially Lee Il-jung (Jo Jung-suk) is a perfect person who is trusted by his subordinates and superiors and you can't help but fall in love with him! The beauty of this movie is that it warmly portrays the daily lives of doctors and patients. It is made to make you feel that you are part of the same hospital. It is rare to find a medical drama that even depicts a doctor playing in a band as a hobby! That is rare. Choi Sung-hwa is the most popular of the five and is set up to be quite mischievous, but Jung Mido, who plays her, is also a musical actress and a talented singer. She's a good singer and a good tone actor, so watch for her!

No. 8 "Misen -The Unborn" (2014)

ミセン」のあらすじ、見所、口コミ、感想、裏話、登場人物 | 晴れ時々韓国ドラマ

No education, no social experience! A new employee who is a former Go player struggles in his life as an office worker.

Main Cast Im Siwan(ZE:A) , Kang Sora , Kang Ha-neul
Number of episodes 20 episodes (each episode is about 60 minutes)
Genre Human Drama , Work

Synopsis

Jang Gure was proclaimed a Go prodigy at an early age and enrolled in a Go academy, but gave up on the path to becoming a professional due to age restrictions. After his military service, he found a friend and became a trainee at a general trading company. With no education or work experience, Goulet struggled at work, but learned how to move with the sensitivity he had developed as a professional Go player.

Highlights

The film begins with the main character, Jang Gure (Im Siwan), chasing someone in a foreign land, but it is not until the end of the play that we learn what that means. How did Gu Lei grow up? What does it mean to "miss" him? Once you know, you get emotional! You'll know, you'll know, you'll know. Another highlight of the film is the way Gorley's friends are able to break out of their current situation in their own way. It's a story of businessmen, but the way they do it should resonate with people of all ages as a life lesson. As for the other actors, Kim Dae-myung, who played one of the five best friends in "The Wise Doctor's Life," plays Goh Lee's ex quite well. He also shows off his Japanese in a phone scene with a Japanese man, so be on the lookout for that.

No. 9 "My Dear Mr. - My Uncle" (2018)

韓国ドラマ「マイ・ディア・ミスター~私のおじさん~」|映画・ドラマ|テレQ - 株式会社TVQ九州放送

Healing story of a faithful uncle x an unfortunate girl

Main Cast. Lee Sung-kyun , IU, Lee Jia
Number of episodes 16 episodes (each episode runs approximately 80 minutes)
Genre Human , Social , Family

Synopsis

One day, Dong-hoon Park, who works for a construction company, receives a mysterious 50 million won gift certificate. Dong-hoon received it once for family reasons and underwent an internal investigation, but somehow the gift certificate disappeared from his desk. When Dong-hoon finds out that it was Lee Ji-an, a contract employee, who threw away the voucher, he asks her to pretend that he did it, and offers to treat her to a month's worth of meals. In reality, however, it was Ji-an who approached Dong-hoon and tried to deceive him by taking money from Do Jun-yeong, the president of the company, who is having an affair with Dong-hoon's wife.

Highlights

The relationship between Ji-an (Lee Ji-woon) and Dong-hoon (Lee Sung-kyung) is great in this movie. No other drama has made me cry so much because of their relationship, which is neither parent-child nor lover. The secondary characters, such as Dong-hoon's brother and friends, are also wonderful, and their presence gives the work great meaning. I've heard that in Korea there is a strong connection between family and place, and the funeral scene is not to be missed. The cast is also gorgeous, and includes many actors who have appeared in popular films, such as Kim Young-min of "Love's Emergency Landing," which ranked first in this article, Park Hye-jung of "Unborn" and Kwon Nara of "The Itaewon Gumi. It is fun to compare their performances in their respective works!

No. 10 "Sisters" (2022)

シスターズキャストや相関図☆あらすじをご紹介/韓国ドラマ|韓国ドラマmania

Can't stop thinking about it! A real suspense based on Wakakusa Monogatari

Main Cast Kim Go-eun , Nam Ji-hyun , Park Ji-hoo
Number of episodes 12 episodes (each episode runs about 70 minutes)
Genre Human Drama , Suspense

Synopsis

Three sisters, In-joo, In-kyung, and In-hye, live a simple life despite growing up in a poor family. One day, however, the three sisters' lives are turned upside down when their senior, whom In-joo, the eldest, loved like a sister, disappears and In-joo is given 2 billion yen. They become embroiled in an eerily huge case. The eldest sister wants to protect her family, the second sister wants to follow her own beliefs, and the third sister wants to live her own life. This is the story of these women's struggle against the darkness of Korean society through "money.

Highlights

A dark suspense directed by Kim Hi-won of the hit drama "Vincenzo. It is based on the story of Wakakusa Monogatari (The Tale of Young Grass) and can be enjoyed by comparing it with the original story. The main attraction of this film is the passionate performance of the main character, Kim Go-eun, who draws you in from the first episode. In addition to a splendid cast including perverted actor Om Ki-joon and Wee Ha-joon, whose popularity skyrocketed with "Squid Game," each episode is full of surprises that will keep you on the edge of your seat!

No. 11 "Shulp" (2022)

韓国ドラマ『シュルプ』が面白い!評価と感想 母性愛や現代的な表現が新鮮な時代劇♪|スマイルズの賢い韓ドラ生活

Heartwarming historical drama featuring Kim Hye-su's struggles as a mother

Main Cast Kim Hye-su , Kim Hye-sook , Choi Won-young
Number of episodes 16 episodes
Genre Human Drama

Synopsis.

Queen Im Hwaryeong, wife of the king, is troubled by her sons who are constantly causing problems. Once a gentle and elegant woman, she finds herself running faster than anyone else in the palace. Nevertheless, she manages to raise her sons as heirs to the throne and educate them to be gifted, but there are many challengers to the throne and many obstacles stand in their way. This new fictional historical drama depicts the mother's tumultuous struggle based on the special education the challenging princes actually received.

Highlights.

For lead actress Kim Hye-su, this is her first topical historical drama in about 20 years. This new historical drama focuses on a group of educated mothers who struggle to make their sons into kings. Kim Hye-su plays a mother who struggles to raise her son, a complete change from the serious role she played in the drama "The Trial of a Minor." The supporting cast is also impressive, ranging from veterans such as Kim Hye Suk and Kim Woo Sung to Yoon Sang Hyun, who makes his debut in this film.

No. 12 "Golden Spoon" (2022)

ゴールデンスプーンを視聴 | Disney+(ディズニープラス)

A life-reversal fantasy that examines the disparities in Korean society

Main Cast Yook Sung-jae , Lee Jung-won , Jeong Chae-young
Number of episodes 16 episodes (each episode runs approximately 70 minutes)
Genre Fantasy , Disparity

In Korea, class is represented by a spoon, and the rich are called "golden spoons. That is the theme of this fantasy drama based on the webcomic of the same name. The drama attracted attention because it was the first drama in which the male lead, Ok Sung-jae, appeared after his military service, but viewers also appreciated the interesting storyline. With its fresh cast and crisp storyline, many people fell in love with this drama! While watching this movie, think about "true happiness."

Synopsis.

Lee Seung-chun grew up in a poor family and spent his days miserably attending a high school where only wealthy students gathered. One day, Seung-Chun receives a "golden spoon" from a mysterious old lady. It is said that this spoon will share the same fate with the person who eats with it three times. In order to become the "golden spoon," or the son of a rich family, Seung-chung finds Hwang Tae-young, a classmate and the sergeant of a rich family. In the end, he succeeds in switching places with Tae-young. ......

Selected by Korean Drama Fans! Watch popular recommended Korean dramas!

From romantic comedies to suspense, we have introduced them in a ranking format. Watch one and then the next, and the next, and the next, and the next, and the next, and the next, and the next, and the next, and the next, and the next, and the next, and the next, and the next, and so on. If you're wondering which other Netflix productions to watch, check out our list of Netflix recommendations.

Best Korean Dramas on Netflix By 2022
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