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Korean drama

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(September 2021) ()

Korean dramas (Korean:한국 드라마; Hanja:韓國드라마; RR: han-guk deurama), more popularly known as K-dramas, are television series in the Korean language, made in South Korea. Korean dramas are popular worldwide, partially due to the spread of Korean popular culture (the "Korean Wave"), and their widespread availability via streaming services which often offer subtitles in multiple languages. Many K-dramas have been adapted throughout the world, and some have had great impact on other countries. Some of the most famous dramas have been broadcast via traditional television channels in other countries. For example, Dae Jang Geum (2003) was sold to 150 countries. K-dramas have attracted attention for their fashion, style and culture all over the world. The rise in popularity of Korean dramas had led to a great boost to fashion line.

Contents

Yongin Daejanggeum Park, a filming site where historical dramas for Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation are produced

South Korea started to broadcast television series in the 1960s. In the 1990s, traditional historical series transformed into the present miniseries format, creating the notion of fusion sageuks.

A single director usually leads Korean dramas, which are often written by a single screenwriter. This often leads to each drama having distinct directing and dialogue styles. This differs from American television series, which can rely on multiple directors and writers working together.

Series set in contemporary times typically run for a single season and usually contain 12 to 24 episodes of 60 minutes each. Historical series may be longer, with up to 200 episodes, but they also generally run for only one season. This differs from American television series, where the first season does not have a definitive end as the plot is being set up to last for multiple seasons.[citation needed]

The broadcast time for drama series has been 22:00 to 23:00, with episodes airing on two consecutive nights: Mondays and Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, or weekends. Most of these drama series appear on each of the nationwide networks: SBS, Korean Broadcasting System (KBS), Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) and on the cable channels, including Channel A, JTBC, TV CHOSUN, tvN, SKY and OCN. Some of drama series might turn into seasonal serials just like famous American weekday drama series.

The 19:00 to 21:00 evening time slot usually have been reserved for daily dramas, which run every night from Monday through Friday. Dramas in these slots are in the telenovela format, rarely running over 150 episodes. Unlike American soap operas, these daily dramas are not broadcast during the daytime. Instead, the daytime schedule often includes reruns of the flagship dramas. The night time dailies can achieve very high ratings. During late 2000s, for example, not only the weekend series First Wives' Club recorded 41.3%, according to TNS Korea, and also the evening series Temptation of Wife peaked at 40.6%, according to TNS Korea. During early 2010s, as side footnote, KBS1 Weekend Household Opera serials for family like Please Marry Me, Ojakgyo Family, My Husband Got a Family, Wang's Family, and What Happens to My Family? gained such a popularity, reputation and influence.

Many Korean dramas follow the live-shoot model and thus are usually shot within a very tight schedule, sometimes finishing just a few hours before actual broadcast. Screenplays are flexible and may change anytime during production, depending on viewers' feedback, which can be difficult for production teams.

Plots and storylines

K-dramas have a multitude of different genres such as action dramas, historical dramas, school dramas, medical dramas, legal dramas, or even horror comedies. While most dramas carry romantic elements and deep emotional themes, there are various styles and tones.

The main themes of Korean television dramas are friendship, family values, and love, blending traditional values of Confucianism with Western materialism and individualism.

However, it is an emerging trend amongst Korean dramas to showcase ongoing societal issues of Korean society such as stigma of mental illness, gender inequality, suicide, classism, bullying, spy cameras, corruption, homophobia or racism.

Historical

Main article: Sageuk

The term sageuk refers to any Korean television or film drama that is either based on historical figures, incorporates historical events, or uses a historical backdrop. While sageuk literally translates to "historical drama", the term is typically reserved for dramas taking place throughout the course of Korean history.

Since the mid-2000s, some sageuks have achieved major success outside of Korea, such as Asia-Pacific, Central Asia, Greater Middle East, Central and Eastern Europe and Latin America. Sageuks including Dae Jang Geum (Jewel in the Palace), Yi San and Jumong enjoyed strong ratings and high satisfaction ratings in countries such Vietnam, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Fiji and Iran. Jumong, which aired on IRIB (Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting) in 2008, had 85% viewership.

Romance

Often centered around a love story, series set in contemporary times often focus on family ties and romantic relationships. Characters are mostly idealized with Korean male protagonists described as handsome, intelligent, emotional, and in search of "one true love". This has also been a contributing factor to the popularity of Korean dramas among women, as the image of Korean men became differentiated from that of other Asian men. The romantic tension typically "is built up so expertly that it is more emotionally resonant when the main couple finally hold hands halfway through the series than when a full-blown bedroom scene happens in an American series". Also, due to Korea's culture, "love scenes rarely progress past kissing" and "even seeing a Deep tongue kiss in a Korean drama is newsworthy".

Early years

Radio broadcasting, including the broadcasting of radio dramas in Korea, began in 1927 under Japanese rule, with most programming in Japanese and around 30% in Korean. After the Korean War, radio dramas such as Cheongsilhongsil (1954) reflected the country's mood.

Television broadcasting began in 1956 with the launch of an experimental station, HLKZ-TV, which was shut down a few years later due to a fire. The first national television channel was Korean Broadcasting System (KBS), which started up in 1961. The first Korean television film was a 15-minute piece titled The Gate of Heaven (천국의 문, Cheongugui mun), on HLKZ-TV.

The first television series was aired by KBS in 1962. Their commercial competitor, Tongyang Broadcasting (TBC), had a more aggressive program policy and aired controversial dramas as well. The first historical TV series aired was Gukto manri (국토만리), directed by Kim Jae-hyeong (김재형), depicting the Goryeo era. In the 1960s, television sets were of limited availability, thus dramas could not reach a larger audience.

In the 1970s, television sets started to spread among the general population, and dramas switched from portraying dramatic historical figures to introducing national heroes like Lee Sun-shin or Sejong the Great. Contemporary series dealt with personal sufferings, such as Kim Soo-hyun's influential Stepmother (새엄마, Saeeomma), aired by Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) in 1972 and 1973. As technology and funding was limited, Korean channels could not make series in resource-heavy genres like action and science fiction; American and other foreign series were imported instead.

1980s–2010s

Chae Shi-ra, the leading actress of Eyes of Dawn (1991)
Actress Lee Young-ae played the titular Dae Jang Geum in the series of the same name.

The 1980s saw a change in Korean television, as color TV became available. Modern dramas tried to evoke nostalgia from urban dwellers by depicting rural life. Kim Soo-hyun's first real commercial success, Love and Ambition (사랑과 야망, Saranggwa yamang), aired on MBC in 1987 and is regarded as a milestone of Korean television, having recorded a 78% viewership. "Streets became quiet at around the airing time of the drama as 'practically everyone in the country' was at home in front of the TV", according to The Korea Times. The most outstanding classical historical series of the era is considered to be 500 Years of Joseon (조선왕조500년, Joseonwangjo 500 nyeon), a serial that ran for eight years, consisting of 11 separate series. The serial was produced by Lee Byung-hoon, who later directed one of the biggest international successes of Korean drama, Dae Jang Geum.The 1990s brought another important milestone for Korean television. As technology developed, new opportunities arose, and the beginning of the decade marked the launch of a new commercial channel; Seoul Broadcasting System (SBS), which facilitated and re-initiated a race for catching viewers' attention. The first real commercial success among Korean television series was Eyes of Dawn (여명의 눈동자, Yeomyeongui nundongja), aired in 1991 by MBC, starring Chae Shi-ra and Choi Jae-sung. The series led the viewers through turbulent times from the Japanese rule to the Korean War. New channel SBS also produced successful series, one of them being Sandglass in 1995. Sandglass was a "trendy drama", which the Korean Culture and Information Service considers an important milestone, having changed the way Korean dramas are made by introducing a new format. In this decade, the new miniseries format became widespread, with 12 to 24 episodes. This era marked the start of export for Korean dramas, setting off the Korean Wave.

The beginning years of the 2000s gave birth to famous Korean dramas and also marked the period of overseas distribution of Korean dramas. Some popular ones are Full House, Autumn in my heart and Winter Sonata. It is marks the birth of a new genre, called "fusion sageuk", essentially changing the ways to produce historical series, with successful pieces such as Hur Jun, Damo and Dae Jang Geum.

Since the 2010s, "web dramas", has become a popular genre. It is a short form of drama mostly streamed on video streaming service such as Naver TV and YouTube.[citation needed] It started to take over the popularity of conventional dramas among 10s and 20s because the shorter runtime, and often feature trendy contents which teenagers are easy to sympathize with.

Webtoon dramas are also another drama type that is gaining popularity. These dramas are adapted from comic strips called webtoons. As such, the plot is more imaginary instead of realistic, and add to the diverse content of K-dramas. Some notable webtoon dramas are Cheese in the Trap, Misaeng and Itaewon Class.[citation needed]

2020s-present

The late 2010s and 2020s saw newfound attention of K-dramas from international markets. Bong Joon-ho's 2019 film Parasite became the first South Korean film to win the Academy Award for Best Picture, in addition to numerous other film accolades. Netflix had begun seeking productions from South Korea and other countries since around 2018 to expand offerings for their service with a growing international audience. These efforts came to fruition when Hwang Dong-hyuk's Squid Game drew in more than 111 million viewers within 17 days of its released in September 2021, become the service's most-watched program.

In the 2020s, several dramas began to produce dramas even before the first season was aired, keeping in mind the season system. The most representative series is The Penthouse: War in Life series, which gained sensational popularity as it aired over three seasons. The biggest reason why Korean dramas introduced the season system is interpreted as changes in the industry due to the 52-hour workweek, viewers' rejection of feature-length dramas, and excessive supply of dramas. At the same time, MBC and tvN's anomalous organization began to be criticized a lot. tvN extended one episode of the drama to 2 hours and 20 minutes. delaying it to the late night of another drama. In particular, the running time of the last episode of Hospital Playlist was close to three hours, but even though it was reduced after editing, it delayed the formation of the next The Road: The Tragedy of One to late night as it passed two hours. and MBC canceled Telenobella The Second Husband and reruned the push drama The Veil at that time.

Korean series were originally produced in house by the television channels themselves, but have been outsourced to independent production companies since the 2000s. In 2012, as much as 75% of all K-dramas were produced this way. Competition is fierce among these companies; out of 156 registered firms, only 34 produced dramas were actually aired in 2012. The budget of the production is shared between the producing company and the broadcaster, with the broadcasting channel covering around 50% of expenses usually. If top stars and famous scriptwriters are employed, they may cover even more. The rest of the budget has to be brought in by the production company with the help of sponsors. In the case of product placements, income is shared by the producer and the channel. The channel keeps 100% of the advertisement income during airtime; this could amount to 300–400 million. 2020s, A typical Korean drama may cost as much as ₩700 million per episode. historical dramas cost more than that. Recently, factors such as improving the production environment along with whether to sign contracts with domestic and foreign OTT companies such as Netflix have served as variables. For example, Kingdom ₩2 billion per episode.

In Korea, much of the budget is spent on the appearance fees of top stars since they are heavily dependent on celebrities' popularity. In some cases, the actors may take up as much as 55–65% of the whole budget, while it is 20–30% in Japan, and roughly 10% in the United States as dramas there tend to avoid casting famous actors when starting off. Everything else, including salaries of lesser-known actors, extras, and technical staff, location rent and other expenses, have to be covered from the remaining amount. Often, production companies overrun their budgets and cannot pay salaries. In 2012, actors held a demonstration in front of the headquarters of KBS, expressing their concerns. Actors are usually paid after the last episode is aired at the end of the month. In series made by smaller production companies for cable channels, there have been cases where the companies went bankrupt and could not pay their actors and crew, while the channel denied all responsibility, claiming all liability was with the bankrupt production firm. Producer Kim Jong-hak spent as much as ₩10 billion on Faith, which was considered a commercial failure, resulting in the inability of Kim to pay crew salaries and other overheads. Kim, who had produced successful dramas such as Eyes of Dawn and Sandglass, committed suicide after he was accused of embezzlement. The biggest stars may earn as much as ₩100 million per episode. Bae Yong-joon, the star of Winter Sonata, reportedly received ₩250 million per episode for The Legend in 2007.

Filmmaking process

Song Joong-ki of Descendants of the Sun is considered a top star.
Kim Soo-hyun in costume for the sageuk Moon Embracing the Sun. Soo-hyun is one of the most popular Korean actors.

As producing a series involves high expenses, production companies seek to shoot the episodes in the shortest time possible. In contrast to practices elsewhere, the first four episodes of Korean series are usually shot in advance, but the rest are shot continuously as the series is being aired. Scripts are not finished in advance, and may change according to viewer feedback and viewership ratings, where popular characters receive increased screen time and plotlines are changed to match audience expectations. These changes may occur a few hours before daily shooting, and the crew might receive only a few ready pages. The production usually works with three camera crews, who work in a rotating manner to speed up filming. Because of unregulated script changes and tight shooting schedules, actors are almost continuously on standby, and have no time to leave the set or sleep properly. The Korean media have a separate word to describe irregular, short sleeps that actors resort to, in often uncomfortable positions, or within the set: jjok-jam (쪽잠), or "side-sleeping". Dramas usually air two episodes a week, one after the other, with the following episodes having to be shot within the intervening five days. Some Korean actors have admitted to receiving IV therapy during filming, due to extreme schedules and exhaustion. Nonetheless the live-shoot model remains widely used since the production team can react to real time audience feedback.

Production teams originally sent two tapes to the channels; a primary copy and a backup copy. However, due to the tight filming schedules, a 70-minute episode might arrive at the broadcasting station on seven separate tapes in ten-minute installments. It happens that while the episode is being broadcast, the crew would be still shooting the last minutes or cutting the rest of the episode. During the airing of the nineteenth episode of Man from the Equator, screens countrywide went black for 10 minutes. Actor Kwon Sang-woo was openly complaining that he was still shooting Queen of Ambition 30 minutes before the last episode began airing. In South Korea, some production teams still do planning and scheduling manually, instead of using dedicated software.

From late 2014 onwards due to the popularity of Korean dramas abroad, especially the success of My Love from the Star in China, producers have increasingly been pitching and pre-selling the overseas broadcast and streaming rights of their dramas. This has given production teams the budget to move away from the live shoot basis to one in which the drama is completed before broadcast. In 2016, dramas such as Descendants of the Sun, Uncontrollably Fond, Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo and Hwarang: The Poet Warrior Youth were all pre-produced before airing. Nonetheless, some pre-produced episodes are often re-edited or even reshot the day of airing, due to audience feedback.

The larger broadcasting companies have their own dedicated shooting locations for historical dramas, with extensive and elaborate sets. MBC's series are shot at MBC Drama in Gyeonggi, while KBS dramas utilize the Mungyeongsaejae Studio (문경새재 KBS촬영장) in North Gyeongsang and their studio in Suwon.

Production companies

Independent production companies are classified into:

Actors and actresses

The leading actors of Korean dramas have become popular outside of South Korea, due to the Korean Wave.

In the 2000s, it became customary to cast popular K-pop idols in dramas. Initially, this generated mixed reactions. Their appearance had provoked predominantly negative reactions outside their fandom because singers and dancers acting outside of their musical circle was regarded as unprofessional. Also, some idols were criticized for poor acting. Nowadays, this has become much more common feature in Korean dramas, as the public has been getting more used to the concept of "idol actors" and some idols have become known for their excellent acting skills. Their critical reception is still mixed, however, some of them, like Bae Suzy, IU, Seo In-guk, Ok Taecyeon and Im Yoon-ah, became successful as actors and actresses.

There were also instances of children taking up careers as child actors or actresses, usually portraying either the younger versions of some characters or the children of the adult characters from dramas. Subsequently, there were some child actors and actresses who continue pursuing acting careers even after reaching adulthood, and with some achieving success even after adulthood. Notably, such people include actors like Yoo Seung-ho and Yeo Jin-goo; and actresses like Kim So-hyun, Lee Se-young, Nam Ji-hyun, Kim Hyang-gi, Park Shin-hye and Kim Yoo-jung.

Scriptwriters and directors

Scriptwriters and directors of Korean dramas are often as well known as actors are. An overwhelming majority of scriptwriters (90% according to the Beijing Metro Reader) are women, who not only write love stories but action series as well. Compared to Korean cinema, television is more appealing for scriptwriters as contract conditions are better, acknowledgment is greater, and the salary is higher.

Famous scriptwriters tend to have a say in their field. The most well-known scriptwriters include the Hong sisters, who wrote popular series such as My Girl, You're Beautiful and My Girlfriend Is a Nine-Tailed Fox; Kim Soon-ok, the screenwriter of The Penthouse: War in Life, The Last Empress, Band of Sisters, Jang Bo-ri is Here! and Temptation of Wife; Kim Eun-sook, the screenwriter of Lovers in Paris, Secret Garden, The Heirs, Descendants of the Sun and Guardian: The Lonely and Great God; Lee Kyung-hee, famous for I'm Sorry, I Love You and The Innocent Man; male writer Choi Wan-kyu of Midas and Triangle; Noh Hee-kyung, the author of That Winter, the Wind Blows; and It's Okay, That's Love; and Park Ji-eun, who wrote My Husband Got a Family, My Love from the Star, The Producers, Legend of the Blue Sea and Crash Landing on You. In particular, writer Kim Soon-ok is famous for captivating male viewers who did not watch dramas well. "Kim Soon-ok's work" is so popular that articles are constantly posted, called 'Soon-ok Queen'.In 2021, an article called "Kim Soon-ok, Kim Eun-sook, and Kim Eun-hee" was also published, referring to star writers.

Acknowledged TV directors include Lee Byung-hoon, who directed Hur-Jun, Dae Jang Geum and Yi San; Kim Jong-hak, the director of Eyes of Dawn, Sandglass, The Legend and The Great Doctor; and Pyo Min-soo [ko], the director of Full House, Worlds Within and Iris II.

While scriptwriters are mostly women, directors are usually men. Some female directors have risen to prominence, such as Lee Na-jeong (이나정), who directed The Innocent Man, and Lee Yun-jeong (이윤정), whose most famous works are The 1st Shop of Coffee Prince and Heart to Heart. The latter director is also the first female television producer employed by Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation (MBC).

Balladeer Baek Ji-young has been named "OST Queen" after providing the songs for several hit dramas such as Secret Garden (2010) and Love in the Moonlight (2016).

Music plays an important role in Korean dramas. Original soundtracks, abbreviated OST's, are explicitly made for each series, and in contrast to American series, fans have a need to buy the soundtrack album of dramas. This trend started in the 1990s, when producers swapped purely instrumental soundtracks for songs performed by popular K-pop singers. Tom Larsen, director of YA Entertainment, a distributor of Korean TV series, thinks that Korean soundtracks are polished enough musically to be considered standalone hits.

During the 2000s, it became customary for lead actors to participate in original soundtracks, also partially due to the employment of K-pop stars as actors. Actor Lee Min-ho, and leader of boy band SS501, Kim Hyun-joong both recorded songs for Boys Over Flowers, while the actors of You're Beautiful formed a fictional band and held concerts, where they perform the soundtracks live.

OST songs of popular K-dramas can also become hits on regular music charts, with good sales of both physical and digital albums. The chart performance of the OST songs usually co-relate to the popularity of the drama. Songs from the OST of Secret Garden for example, had high digital sales and high rankings on music charts. My Destiny, performed by Lyn for My Love from the Star, led music charts in Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, and other Asian countries. It also won the Best OST award at the 2014 Baeksang Arts Awards. The soundtrack album of You're Beautiful sold 57,000 physical copies. Performers of OST songs for action series Iris held two concerts in Japan in front of an audience of 60,000 people.

Although the songs in Korean dramas may have only a selective few or are repetitive, the choosing of the songs are not that easy of a process. An example of this can be found in the OST for the Korean drama: Guardian: The Lonely and Great God. Songs usually are made to convey emotions or scenes especially in dramas and the emotion was assigned to be conveyed by Rocoberry was suffering and beauty. Rocoberry is a Korean indie pop duo with the members of Roco and conan and they are famous for composing songs in Korean dramas. Even though they had quite the experience with composing songs, for Guardian: The Lonely and Great God, they had to create 12 different compositions for this drama until finally one of their most famous songs I Will Go to You Like the First Snow was chosen. Not only did it take 12 compositions for this song to be chosen but after the approval of this songs, there had to be 7 rewrites until it was finally complete and met the satisfaction standards of the production team. link The song was used in only two episodes despite the hard process. The song was placed in two scenes that later on were shown to be connected to each other and also became some of the most important scenes in the drama. This is only the beginning of understanding how much time and effort goes into the choosing of songs for these types of dramas and how they can enhance a scene in many different ways.

OST composers usually look for singers who have previously had success in the genre. Songs are written to reflect the mood of the series and their structure. Sometimes performers give their own songs for a series. For example, Baek Ji-young thought her song That Man, originally written for her own album, would fit Secret Garden. There are popular OST singers who are often employed, like Baek Ji-young, Lyn, and Lee Seung-cheol. Sometimes, foreign singers are invited to perform songs for Korean OST. For instance, Swedish artist Lasse Lindh sang several songs for series like Angel Eyes, Soul Mate, I Need Romance, and Guardian: The Lonely and Great God.

The television rating system is regulated by the Korea Communications Commission, and was implemented in 2000. According to the system, programs, including Korean dramas, are rated according to the following principles (ratings irrelevant to dramas are omitted):

  • : programs that may be inappropriate for children under 12, such as mild violence, suggestive themes or language.
  • : programs that may be inappropriate for children under 15. Most dramas and talk shows are rated this way. These programs may include moderate or strong adult themes, language, sexual inference, and violence.
  • : programs intended for adults only. These programs might include adult themes, sexual situations, frequent use of strong language and disturbing scenes of violence.

According to a researcher at the University of Vienna, popularity of Korean dramas have their foundation in Confucian values they transmit, which Asian viewers can easily identify with. Respect for elders, filial piety, family-orientedness, and the display of perceived "Asian moral values" play an important role in Korean series. YA Entertainment, the American distributor of Korean dramas, believes that part of the attractiveness of these series come from the quality of camera work, scenic locations, and spectacular costumes, which make the "final product very stylish and attractive, with arguably some of the highest TV production values in the world." Korean series follow their own formula, are innovative and don't conform to Western television productions. Stephan Lee from Entertainment Weekly called Korean dramas "fascinating and weirdly comforting".

Exports of Korean series yieldedUS$37.5 million in 2003, which was three times higher than the amount reached in 1999. According to data from Korea Creative Content Agency, in 2013 K-dramas constituted 82% of the culture content export of South Korea, with an income of $167 million, which is four times more than a decade before.

A driving force behind the rising popularity is the intense involvement of fans. Because of the live-shooting production of K-dramas, Korean-speaking fans have the opportunity to participate in their creation—a unique phenomenon in the mass media world. They can influence the content of later shows in the series through complaints and suggestions, which are frequently adopted by the production teams.

The global community of non-Korean-speaking fans, on the other hand, is more involved in the consumption aspects: Fans share their opinions through tweets and comments on newsgroups (for example, the Soompi discussion forum) as well as reviews and recaps on websites and blogs. However, the impact of their social media activity goes beyond the fan community. It spreads the word about the K-drama genre to social connections like acquaintances, friends and family (e.g. Facebook friends or followers on Twitter) and thereby generally raises its popularity. But it also has an effect on the creation of new dramas. It influences the popularity of certain dramas, leading to higher demand for those videos from streaming sites and additional income for broadcasters. When a substantial profit results, it raises not only the prestige of people involved in the production but also provides feedback for production teams and indirectly influences future productions.

International reception

East Asia

Won Bin gained wide popularity in 2000 after starring in the television drama Autumn in My Heart and has since gained critical acclaim for his performances in the films Taegukgi, Mother and The Man from Nowhere.
China

In China, South Korean programs on Chinese government TV networks accounted for more than all other foreign programs combined in 2006. Hong Kong has its own channel for airing Korean dramas, TVB J2, but ATV also airs Korean series in prime-time slots.My Love from the Star received enthusiastic feedback from China. It was viewed 40 billion times on numerous Chinese video sites. The drama also spurred interest about Korea, shown by China's increased consumption of Korean products such as Chi Maek (chicken and beer) and Korean cosmetics. Due to the success of Korean dramas in China, some dramas have been compiled to create feature-length films by combining all episodes into one film. The prodigious popularity of Korean dramas in the country has, on some occasions, been caught in the crossfire over diplomatic issues between China and South Korea. Most notable being the THAAD deployment in South Korea which resulted in the blocking of Korean dramas on streaming services across the country in late February 2017. Following the block, Chinese TV shows showcasing Chinese culture and other similar content replaced Korean content on TV networks' prime time schedules in the country. In November 2017, the ban was lifted unannounced following the appearance of Kpop groups on national TV and the move to resume importation of Korean dramas by Chinese streaming services. In China, apps like IQiyi, which is currently also available in Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan and some other countries in multiple different subtitles, are available to stream and download Korean dramas for viewing.

Japan

The first Korean drama to gain widespread popularity in Japan was Winter Sonata, which was broadcast on the NHK satellite channel NHK BS2 in 2003. The program was aired twice in the same year due to high demand from viewers. NHK also hosted a classical concert featuring Winter Sonata's tunes performed by Korean musicians. Korean dramas boost tourism between Korea and Japan, and is considered a possible way of improving strained relationships between the two countries, as series have become increasingly popular with Japanese viewers. Conversely, the series Iris had several pivotal scenes shot in Akita, Japan, which led to an increase of Korean tourists in that part of Japan.

Mongolia

In Mongolia, Korean dramas have become popular and are broadcast at prime time. Dae Jang Geum achieved success in the country and was broadcast five times due to this. Autumn in My Heart, Winter Sonata and Stairway to Heaven were other popular dramas. Popularity in Korean dramas has resulted in interest in the learning of the Korean language as well as Mongolians travelling to South Korea. It has also led to increased mutually cooperative relations between Mongolia and South Korea.

North Korea

Watching films or TV dramas from South Korea is a serious offence in North Korea, punishable by execution, but people still manage to acquire them on CDs and DVDs.

In 2021, there was an article that young people who were watching the popular drama The Penthouse: War in Life were caught in Pyeongseong-si, Pyeongnam-do, and were should be forced to serve more than 10 years. Later, the residents of Yanggang-do began to imitate the famous lines from the Penthouse series, and the residents were also unable to avoid punishment.

Taiwan

In Taiwan, interest in Korean dramas began when Star in My Heart aired in 1999. Since then Korean dramas have become very popular and according to the South Korean mission 120 K-dramas had been broadcast in Taiwan in the first half of 2011.

Southeast Asia

Brunei

In recent times Korean dramas have experienced growing popularity in Brunei. The growing impact of Korean culture in Brunei led to the hosting of the ninth Korea Forum in the country at Universiti Brunei Darussalam in 2010. Korean television dramas, movies, music, and clothing have had a great impact on the people of Brunei.

Cambodia

The first Korean drama to be broadcast in Cambodia was Winter Sonata; it was, however, Full House that launched the interest in Korean dramas and entertainment in the country. Following the success of Full House, more Korean dramas have been dubbed into the Khmer language. Korean dramas have become popular particularly amongst youth in Cambodia.

Indonesia

In Indonesia, Korean dramas have gained popularity and the popular Korean dramas Winter Sonata and Endless Love were aired on Surya Citra Media in 2002. Some Korean dramas have also been remade into Indonesian versions such as Demi Cinta in 2005 which was a remake of the popular drama Autumn in My Heart and Cinta Sejati, a remake of Stairway to Heaven. RCTI and Indosiar are examples of Indonesian television networks that air Korean dramas in the early times, but later Trans TV airing some of popular Korean dramas until today.

Laos

The popularity of Korean dramas and pop culture in Laos has led to many Laotian tourists travelling to South Korea. Korean pop culture has gained popularity in Laos through the Thai TV channels broadcasting Korean dramas and K-pop bands in the country.

Malaysia

In Malaysia, Winter Sonata began airing on TV3 in 2003, which started an interest in Korean pop culture in the country. Dae Jang Geum and Autumn In My Heart were also aired in Malaysia. The popularity of Korean dramas have resulted in a positive reception of Korean expatriates in Malaysia.

Myanmar

In Myanmar, the K-drama Autumn in My Heart was broadcast in the country in 2001, which led to interest in Korean entertainment. When Dae Jang Geum was on air, the drama sparked an interest in Korean cuisine in the country. The rising popularity of Korean dramas and music in Myanmar has led to the Korea Foundation for International Culture Exchange (KOFICE) distributing Korean dramas in the country for free.

Philippines

In the Philippines, Korean dramas are politically popular on free-to-air television since 2003. GMA Network, ABS-CBN and TV5 are regularly airing Korean dramas dubbed in Tagalog. As of the 2020s, GMA Network has the highest number of Korean dramas broadcast in the Philippines.

Singapore

In Singapore, Prime 12 (now known as Suria) originally aired the Korean drama Sandglass on a weekly basis in 1996 and aired Asphalt Man in 1997. Since 2001, they are shown on Chinese language channel MediaCorp Channel U daily. The launch of KBS World, ONE TV ASIA, Oh!K, Channel M and streaming app, Viu in Singapore allows viewers to watch Korean dramas with a variety of subtitles in a matter of hours after the original South Korean telecast. Currently, Singaporeans also get access to Korean dramas through China-originated online platform IQIYI, which first soft-launched its app in 2019 and planned to expand its international bases in Singapore.

Thailand

When Dae Jang Geum was on air in Thailand, Korean food started gaining wide popularity. Due to the lop-sided nature of entertainment exports favoring South Korea, the Thai government requested increased introduction of popular Thai films to South Korean media outlets. This led to the signing of an Agreement of Cultural Cooperation between the two countries in August 2004.

Vietnam

Korean dramas have also gained popularity in Vietnam, particularly among women and young people. The fashion and hairstyles presented in Korean dramas have become very popular among the youth of the country.

South Asia

Actor Lee Min-ho achieved pan-Asia popularity with his hit dramas Boys Over Flowers (2009), The Heirs (2013) and The Legend of the Blue Sea (2016).
Bangladesh

Korean dramas have gained popularity in Bangladesh in recent years. Their rising popularity in the country has led to the Korea Foundation for International Culture Exchange (KOFICE), an organisation which aims to distribute Korean dramas for free to countries, cooperating with broadcasters to distribute Korean dramas for free in the country. With the growing number of K-drama fans in Bangladesh, more and more Facebook groups are popping up, giving them a platform to share their love of the shows with fellow K-drama enthusiasts and take part in events and activities hosted by the groups. One of the largest Bangladeshi K-Drama groups, BD K-Family, arranges a yearly get together for its members. Other popular Facebook K-Drama groups include K-Drama Archive BD, Korean Lovers Bangladesh, and BD Korean Drama Fam- all of which create opportunities for both local and international fans to participate in discussions about their favourite shows.

Bhutan

In the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan, Korean dramas and entertainment have gained popularity particularly amongst youth. Prior to interest in Korean entertainment, Bollywood had largely been the most popular form of entertainment in the country. When the Bhutanese film industry launched in the mid-1990s, Bollywood was the only form of influence on the industry. However, in recent years Korean entertainment has made significant inroads in the country and influence the entertainment industry alongside Bollywood. Korean entertainment has managed to influence fashion, and many video shops now sell Korean dramas and movies alongside Bollywood films. The interest in Korean entertainment has also led to controversy with older generations voicing their concern that Korean entertainment will deteriorate Bhutanese culture and traditions.

India

In India, after the late 1990s and around 2000 Korean dramas started becoming popular through piracy particularly in north-eastern states such as Manipur, Assam, Meghalaya, Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Tripura, Mizoram and Nagaland as well as parts of eastern state like West Bengal and more recently in southern state Tamil Nadu. Hindi films and TV serials were banned in Manipur in 2000, as a result local television stations began broadcasting subtitled Korean dramas instead from Arirang TV and KBS World. Many young people in north-eastern, eastern and southern parts of India mimic the hairstyles, clothes of Korean actors while Korean fashion became very popular in the region. As part of cultural exchange, public broadcaster Doordarshan telecasted Emperor of the Sea and Dae Jang Geum. Korean dramas are dubbed in Tamil on Puthuyugam TV such as 'Boys over flowers', 'My love from another star','Playful Kiss' and many more. Full House and Hwang Jini started airing on Firangi channel in 2008. Reliance Big TV offered KBS World to its subscribers from 2009 on satellite television. Local fan clubs got help from Consul-General of the Republic of Korea while Korean Cultural Centre in India (KCCI) under South Korean embassy started mapping popularity of K-dramas. As per KCCI, the motivation to understand Korean drama properly without subtitles is driving the uptake of Korean language classes among the youth with females outnumbering males. DD Bharati broadcast period drama Hur Jun in 2014 that received highest viewer ratings of 34 million from January to October 2014. Online streaming platform ZEE5 launched Descendants of the Sun to test the Indian market from 8 February to 1 March 2017 and found overwhelming positive response for Korean content with viewer-ship ran close to 56 million. The telecast of Korean drama on Cable TV in 2017 stopped as Korean Broadcasting System Network wanted to raise syndication charges due to accumulation of large viewer-ship base in India that included pockets of Bihar, Kerala and Uttar Pradesh due to short 16 to 20 episodes format that are easier for binge-watching. With increasing interest in Korean content among younger generation from tier-1 cities, Samsung through its My Galaxy mobile application is partnering with Korean Broadcasting System (KBS) in 2019 to bring exclusive content for 20 million Indian users. With COVID-19 pandemic, Dish TV started premium K-dramas dubbed in Hindi and Tamil. Korean dramas are also driving highest viewer-ship on Netflix with second season of TV series Kingdom attained the Top 10 series row as of March 2020. It's Okay to Not Be Okay is on Netflix Top 10 list in India for several weeks in August 2020 which has jumped to number 3 position. Netflix is increasing investment on Korean content to capture the Indian market. Over-the-top media service (OTT) MX Player confirmed rising popularity and demand of Korean dramas among millennial population especially the women audience and is now making deals with South Korean television and radio network company Seoul Broadcasting System (SBS) to bring more content in India. Korean dramas and films became most visited category for ShortsTV in India. As per media experts, the relatable themes in Korean content is fast catching the imagination of general public of almost every age group that is going mainstream and driving highest viewing especially after 92nd Academy Awards winning movie Parasite due to the shared Asian cultural heritage and societal values. As per Parrot Analytics report, k-drama series 'Crash Landing on You', is on demand 1.2 times than an average TV series that is 89.8% more than all drama titles shown in India forcing broadcasters to make extra slots as women are at the forefront of consumer demand in Korean content category. The COVID-19 lockdown in India proved to be an inflection point in 2020-2021 when Korean drama moved from a niche sub-culture segment to mainstream due to services like Netflix, Rakuten Viki and YouTube. It penetrated to every age group and social background. The popularity of Korean drama forced many over-the-top media service in India such as MX Player, Viu and ZEE5 to bring the dubbed versions in local language that will help cater to large non English speaking audience.

Nepal

Interest for Korean dramas in the Nepal began when Winter Sonata aired on Kantipur Television Network in the mid-2000s. This led to the popularity of other K-dramas such as Boys Over Flowers, Autumn In My Heart, You Are Beautiful and Full House to name a few. Popularity of Korean media products has also led to interest of learning the Korean language and has resulted in the emergence of Korean language tutorials that air on ABC Television in the country. Korean dramas have become popular among Nepali youth and markets are often frequented by teenagers looking to buy the latest dramas. The hairstyles and fashion of Korean actors have influenced the fashion sense of Nepali youth. Fascinated by the lifestyle and food of Korea, restaurants serving Korean cuisine have also been established in the country.

Sri Lanka

In Sri Lanka, the Independent Television Network aired Full House in 2009 and it proved popular. Dae Jang Geum aired on Rupavahini in 2012 and was dubbed in Sinhala under the title Sujatha Diyani (සුජාත දියණී), meaning "The Pure, Valuable Daughter" and received a viewer rate of over 90%. The Independent Television Network, Rupavahini, TV Derana, Sirasa TV, Swarnavahini and TV1 air Korean dramas dubbed in the Sinhalese language. Streaming service, Iflix also streams many Korean dramas with English and Sinhalese subtitles in the country, some as early as 24 hours after their original Korean broadcast. Additionally, the popularity of Korean pop culture in the country has led to an increasingly warm reception towards Korean people.

Middle East and North Africa

Since the mid-2000s, Israel, Iran, Morocco and Egypt have become major consumers of Korean culture. Following the success of Korean dramas in the Middle East & North Africa, the Korean Overseas Information Service made Winter Sonata available with Arabic subtitles on several state-run Egyptian television networks. According to Youna Kim (2007), "The broadcast was part of the government's efforts to improve the image of South Korea in the Middle East, where there is little understanding and exposure towards Korean culture" (p. 31). The New York Times reported that the intent behind this was to contribute towards positive relations between Arab & Berber audiences and South Korean soldiers stationed in northern Iraq.

MBC4 (Middle East Broadcasting Channel) played a major role in increasing the Korean wave's popularity in the MENA region (Middle East and North Africa). This broadcasting channel hosted a series of Korean drama starting 2013 such as "Boys Over Flowers" (أيام الزهور), "You're Beautiful" (أنت جميلة), "Dream High" (حلم الشباب ), "Coffee Prince" ( مقهى الأمير). Some Arab countries opposed Korean content (dramas, reality show) out of fear that their youth would abandon Islamic traditions in order to adopt Western modernity. However, this did not stop the Korean industries from exporting more Korean Dramas to the Arab world in the following years such as "The Heirs" ( الورثة). The popularity of Korean dramas in the MENA region-and its continuous growth- originates from the content of these dramas. As the majority of the plots of Korean dramas focus on social issues (love between different social classes or family problems for instance), the Arab audiences fit themselves and could relate to the Korean socio-cultural values as they seem appealing to them. So Korean dramas play the role of an equilibrium point where two, somehow, different cultures could create a new cultural space where these two different cultures could meet.

Iran

Iran's state broadcaster, Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting (IRIB), aired several Korean dramas during prime time slots in recent years, with this decision attributed by some to their Confucian values of respect for others, which are "closely aligned to Islamic culture", while in contrast, Western productions often fail to satisfy the criteria set by Iran's Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance. In October 2012, the Tehran Times reported that IRIB representatives visited South Korea to visit filming locations in an effort to strengthen "cultural affinities" between the two countries and to seek avenues for further cooperation between KBS and IRIB. According to Reuters, until recently audiences in Iran have had little choice in broadcast material and thus programs that are aired by IRIB often attain higher viewership ratings in Iran than in South Korea; for example, the most popular episodes of Jumong attracted over 90% of Iranian audience (compared to 40% in South Korea), propelling its lead actor Song Il-gook to superstar status in Iran.

Iraq

In the early 2000s, Korean dramas were aired for South Korean troops stationed in northern Iraq as part of coalition forces led by the United States during the Iraq War. With the end of the war and the subsequent withdrawal of South Korean military personnel from the country, efforts were made to expand availability of K-dramas to the ordinary citizens of Iraq. In 2012, the Korean drama Hur Jun reportedly attained a viewership of over 90% in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. Its lead actor Jun Kwang-ryul was invited by the federal government of Iraq to visit the city of Sulaymaniyah in Kurdistan, at the special request of the country's First Lady, Hero Ibrahim Ahmed.

Egypt

Autumn in My Heart, one of the earliest Korean dramas brought over to the Middle East, was made available for viewing after five months of "persistent negotiations" between the South Korean embassy and an Egyptian state-run broadcasting company. Shortly after the series ended, the embassy reported that it had received over 400 phone calls and love letters from fans from all over the country. According to the secretary of the South Korean embassy in Cairo Lee Ki-seok, Korea's involvement in the Iraq War had significantly undermined its reputation among Egyptians, but the screening of Autumn in My Heart proved "extremely effective" in reversing negative attitudes.

Europe

Romania

The first Korean drama in Romania was aired on TVR in August 2009 with Dae Jang Geum, and in the following month it became the third most popular television program in the country. Since then, Korean dramas have seen high ratings and further success.

North America

USA

The Asian American-targeted cable TV channels AZN Television and ImaginAsian aired Korean dramas alongside content from China, Japan, India, Thailand and other parts of Asia. The dramas were aimed at the Asian American community before the channels dissolved in 2008 and 2011 respectively.

In November 2008, Netflix began offering several Korean dramas as part of its video selection. In August 2009, DramaFever began offering free subtitled video streaming service, with video advertisements, in the United States.

Singapore-based Viki streams popular Korean dramas across the world including North America, with subtitles in 70 languages. Companies in Asia have also designed streaming services available online and as mobile apps targeted towards overseas Asian communities. "MobiTV" created by the Sri Lankan company, Bhasha is a streaming service and mobile app aimed at the Sri Lankan community and streams Korean dramas dubbed in the Sinhalese language alongside other content aired in Sri Lanka. "Roopa", created by the same company, is another service available as a mobile app also aimed at the Sri Lankan community, it too streams Korean dramas dubbed in the Sinhalese language. Chinese company PPTV is another example, a mobile app, "PPTV网络电视HD" streams Korean dramas aimed at the Chinese community alongside content that is primarily available in Mandarin, Cantonese and Korean but also increasingly in English.

Additionally, Korean dramas are available at online DVD retailers. Some Korean dramas, however, are not available for region 1 (North America) encoding and NTSC video format. Amazon offers streaming of Winter Sonata for a fee.

KBFD-DT in Honolulu, Hawaii broadcasts a majority of Korean dramas on its daily schedule, as well as offering the programs on sale at its website and on demand through its K-Life channel on Oceanic Time Warner Cable. Another Honolulu outlet, KHII-TV devotes three hours of its Sunday afternoon schedule to Korean dramas.

KTSF, a channel aimed at the Asian American community in San Francisco, California airs Korean dramas as part of its schedule alongside content in Mandarin, Tagalog, Hindi, Korean, Vietnamese, Japanese, Taiwanese and Cantonese.

South America

Between 2001 and 2002, South America began to absorb Korean programming. The 1997 series Star in My Heart began its successful broadcast in Chile, Peru and other countries in the area, but these last two were where More had repercussions, including an Ahn Jae-wook fan club founded. In 2002, Winter Sonata, produced by KBS 2TV, became the first series in the region to match the success of Meteor Garden, attracting a cult following in Asia. Marketing sales, including DVD sets and novels, exceeded $3.5 million in Japan. In 2004, then-Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi noted that the series' male lead was "more popular than I am in Japan." Other Korean dramas released in later years such as Jewel in the Palace (2003) and Full House (2004) had comparable levels of success.

Chile

In Chile, which was one of the first countries on a global level, the phenomenon of Korean wave, which is also known as hallyu, began with the first drama aired that was the original 1997 MBC series Star in My Heart in 2001 by Chilevisión past midnight and later years later in 2003 it was retransmitted by Canal 21 (Chillán) [es] in Chillán, but it was not until 2006, when Stairway to Heaven was broadcast at 1:00 pm on the public television channel Televisión Nacional de Chile, which achieved notoriety of this genre being compared to La madrastra—an old very successful Chilean soap opera—due to the high audience figures in its schedule competing directly with other channels, it was also broadcast by TV Chile to other continents dubbed into Spanish.

Viewership ratings are provided by two companies in South Korea: Nielsen Korea and TNmS. Originally, Media Service Korea (MSK) was the sole company providing TV viewership ratings using people meter since 1992, but was only limited to Seoul Capital Area. In 1998, TNS Media Korea began as a rival company in partnership with Taylor Nelson Sofres (TNS) which extended the service to five major cities; it was officially launched in June 1999 with a more sophisticated viewership rating survey technique. While, in August 1999, AC Nielsen acquired MSK and rebranded it as AC Nielsen Korea and expanded the audience rating survey to the whole country with the aim to increase the credibility of the ratings. In 2005, AC Nielsen Korea signed a merger with AGB Group and AGB Nielsen Media Research was established. AGB Nielsen Media Research merged with KADD Nielsen Media Research in January 2013, and the official name was changed to Nielsen Korea.

In 2010, TNS Media Korea was renamed to TNmS (Total National Multimedia Statistics). Since late 2018, TNmS stopped providing data to the public through their websites, and instead occasionally releases the ratings through news agencies such as BreakNews.

List of highest-rated series on terrestrial television

The list was compiled from data by Nielsen Korea, based on the episode of the highest viewership since 1992.

By household rating

List of highest-rated series on cable television

  • The following dramas air on a cable channel/pay TV which normally has a relatively smaller audience compared to free-to-air TV/public broadcasters (KBS, SBS, MBC and EBS).

By household rating

  1. As of 2010 it remained 38th in ranking, as of January 2013, it remained 41st in ranking, as of May 2015, it remained around 40th in ranking, as of June 2018, it remained 39th in ranking.
  2. The number of viewers was released by Nielsen Korea starting January 2018.
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  252. "September 9, 2012 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 주말연속극(넝쿨째굴러온당신) 45.3%
  253. "July 26, 2009 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 특별기획(찬란한유산) 45.2%
  254. "March 11, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 주말드라마(황금빛내인생) 45.1%
  255. "July 2, 2006 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 주말극장(하늘이시여) 44.9%
  256. "March 10, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 주말드라마(하나뿐인내편) 9,246
  257. "February 4, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 주말드라마(황금빛내인생) 8,366
  258. "September 6, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 주말드라마(한번다녀왔습니다) 6,893
  259. "September 9, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 주말드라마(같이살래요) 6,669
  260. "September 22, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 주말드라마(세상에서제일예쁜내딸) 6,247
  261. "January 31, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 주말드라마(오삼광빌라) 6,145
  262. "September 12, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 주말드라마(오케이광자매) 5,823
  263. "March 8, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 주말드라마(사랑은뷰티풀인생은원더풀) 5,693
  264. "March 27, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 금토드라마(WARINLIFE펜트하우스2) 5,601
  265. "January 5, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 월화드라마(WARINLIFE펜트하우스) 5,354
  266. "October 24, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 주말드라마(신사와아가씨) 5,324
  267. "February 25, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 월화드라마(낭만닥터김사부2) 5,210
  268. "November 21, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 수목드라마(동백꽃필무렵) 4,491
  269. "April 20, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 금토드라마(열혈사제) 4,325
  270. "February 3, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 2nd (MBC) 주말특별기획(돈꽃) 4,085
  271. "March 19, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS1) 일일연속극(꽃길만걸어요) 3,950
  272. "February 14, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 금토드라마(스토브리그) 3,921
  273. "October 1, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS1) 일일연속극(여름아부탁해) 3,897
  274. "August 24, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS1) 일일드라마(기막힌유산) 3,852
  275. "June 4, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 금요드라마(WARINLIFE펜트하우스3) 3,778
  276. "March 14, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 수목드라마(왜그래풍상씨) 3,692
  277. "March 1, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS1) 일일드라마(누가뭐래도) 3,599
  278. "February 10, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 일일드라마(비밀의남자) 3,502
  279. "January 1, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 일일드라마(내남자의비밀) 3,480
  280. "November 1, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS1) 일일연속극(내일도맑음) 3,478
  281. "March 5, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS1) 일일연속극(비켜라운명아) 3,459
  282. "February 27, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS1) 일일연속극(미워도사랑해) 3,330
  283. "February 21, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 드라마스페셜(황후의품격THELASTEMPRESS) 3,282
  284. "November 6, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 2nd (SBS) 금토드라마(원더우먼) 3,235
  285. "April 17, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 금토드라마(복수대행써비스모범택시) 3,117
  286. "February 16, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 3rd (MBC) 주말특별기획(신과의약속) 3,112
  287. "January 14, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 3rd (MBC) 주말드라마(밥상차리는남자) 3,082
  288. "March 26, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 2nd (KBS2) 일일드라마(우아한모녀) 3,080
  289. "July 12, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS1) 일일드라마(속아도꿈결) 2,951
  290. "November 8, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 일일드라마(빨강구두) 2,913
  291. "May 15, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 수목드라마(닥터프리즈너) 2,832
  292. "February 7, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 드라마스페셜(리턴) 2,817
  293. "April 16, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 일일드라마(미스몬테크리스토) 2,808
  294. "October 4, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 2nd (KBS1) 저녁일일극(국가대표와이프) 2,799
  295. "April 11, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 3rd (SBS) 금토드라마(하이에나) 2,789
  296. "October 2, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 일일드라마(태양의계절) 2,754
  297. "December 24, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (SBS) 월화드라마(VIP) 2,688
  298. "February 17, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 5th (MBC) 주말드라마(내사랑치유기) 2,660
  299. "May 22, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (KBS2) 일일드라마(인형의집) 2,613
  300. "August 28, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 3rd (KBS2) 일일드라마(위험한약속) 2,604
  301. "February 8, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 2nd (KBS2) 수목드라마(흑기사) 2,492
  302. "April 9, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 2nd (KBS2) 일일드라마(왼손잡이아내) 2,488
  303. "November 23, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 3rd (SBS) 금토드라마(배가본드) 2,472
  304. "April 18, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 3rd (SBS) 금토드라마(더킹영원의군주) 2,453
  305. "December 28, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 2nd (KBS2) 일일드라마(끝까지사랑) 2,445
  306. "May 16, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (JTBC) 금토드라마(부부의세계) 28.371%
  307. "February 1, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (JTBC) 금토드라마(SKY캐슬) 23.779%
  308. "February 16, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 토일드라마(사랑의불시착<본>) 21.683%
  309. "Reply 1988 Writes Cable Television History". Stoo Asaie.
  310. "January 16, 2016 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 응답하라1988<본> 18.803%
  311. "January 21, 2017 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 쓸쓸하고찬란하신도깨비<본> 18.680%
  312. "September 30, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 미스터션샤인<본> 18.129%
  313. "February 14, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 토일드라마(철인왕후조선중전영혼가출스캔들<본>) 17.371%
  314. "August 8, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (TV CHOSUN) 주말미니시리즈(결혼작사이혼작곡2) 16.582%
  315. "February 29, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (JTBC) 금토드라마(이태원클라쓰) 16.548%
  316. "May 2, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 토일드라마(빈센조<본>) 14.636%
  317. "October 30, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 월화드라마(백일의낭군님<본>) 14.412%
  318. "May 28, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 슬기로운의사생활<본> 14.142%
  319. "September 16, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 슬기로운의사생활2<본> 14.080%
  320. "October 17, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 토일드라마(갯마을차차차<본>) 12.665%
  321. "March 12, 2016 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 시그널<본> 12.544%
  322. "종영 '품위녀' 12.1%로 자체 최고 기록..무서운 뒷심". Star News (in Korean).
  323. "August 19, 2017 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (JTBC) 금토드라마(품위있는그녀) 12.065%
  324. "September 1, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 토일드라마(호텔델루나<본>) 12.001%
  325. "December 28, 2013 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 응답하라1994 11.509%
  326. "January 18, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 수목드라마(슬기로운감빵생활<본>) 11.195%
  327. "January 24, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 2nd (OCN) 경이로운소문<본> 10.999%
  328. "March 4, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 월화드라마(왕이된남자<본>) 10.851%
  329. Kim, Tong-hyung (25 February 2013). "Childless Comfort looks like TV game-changer". The Korea Times. Retrieved4 March 2013.
  330. "February 24, 2013 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (JTBC) JTBC특별기획드라마(무자식상팔자) 10.715%
  331. "October 24, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 특별기획지리산<본> 10.663%
  332. "June 27, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 마인<본> 10.512%
  333. "November 29, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 수목드라마(남자친구<본>) 10.329%
  334. "January 13, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 토일드라마(알함브라궁전의추억<본>) 10.025%
  335. "June 28, 2016 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 월화드라마(또오해영<본>) 9.991%
  336. "July 4, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (MBN) 종편특별기획드라마(보쌈운명을훔치다) 9.759%
  337. "March 19, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (JTBC) 월화드라마(눈이부시게) 9.731%
  338. "March 25, 2017 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (JTBC) 금토드라마(힘쎈여자도봉순) 9.668%
  339. "February 14, 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (TV CHOSUN) 주말미니시리즈(결혼작사이혼작곡) 9.656%
  340. "October 4, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 토일드라마(비밀의숲2<본>) 9.408%
  341. "July 1, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 무법변호사<본> 8.937%
  342. "October 27, 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 월화드라마(청춘기록<본>) 8.740%
  343. "July 11, 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (tvN) 수목드라마(김비서가왜그럴까<본>) 8.665%
  344. "October 17, 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings". Nielsen Korea. 1st (MBN) 우아한가 8.478%
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Korean drama Language Watch Edit 160 160 Redirected from South Korean drama This article needs additional citations for verification Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources Unsourced material may be challenged and removed Find sources Korean drama news newspapers books scholar JSTOR September 2021 Learn how and when to remove this template message Korean dramas Korean 한국 드라마 Hanja 韓國드라마 RR han guk deurama more popularly known as K dramas are television series in the Korean language made in South Korea Korean dramas are popular worldwide partially due to the spread of Korean popular culture the Korean Wave and their widespread availability via streaming services which often offer subtitles in multiple languages Many K dramas have been adapted throughout the world and some have had great impact on other countries 1 Some of the most famous dramas have been broadcast via traditional television channels in other countries For example Dae Jang Geum 2003 was sold to 150 countries K dramas have attracted attention for their fashion style and culture all over the world The rise in popularity of Korean dramas had led to a great boost to fashion line Contents 1 Format 1 1 Plots and storylines 1 2 Historical 1 3 Romance 2 History 2 1 Early years 2 2 1980s 2010s 2 3 2020s present 3 Production 3 1 Filmmaking process 3 2 Production companies 4 Crew 4 1 Actors and actresses 4 2 Scriptwriters and directors 5 Music 6 Rating system 7 Reception 7 1 International reception 7 1 1 East Asia 7 1 1 1 China 7 1 1 2 Japan 7 1 1 3 Mongolia 7 1 1 4 North Korea 7 1 1 5 Taiwan 7 1 2 Southeast Asia 7 1 2 1 Brunei 7 1 2 2 Cambodia 7 1 2 3 Indonesia 7 1 2 4 Laos 7 1 2 5 Malaysia 7 1 2 6 Myanmar 7 1 2 7 Philippines 7 1 2 8 Singapore 7 1 2 9 Thailand 7 1 2 10 Vietnam 7 1 3 South Asia 7 1 3 1 Bangladesh 7 1 3 2 Bhutan 7 1 3 3 India 7 1 3 4 Nepal 7 1 3 5 Sri Lanka 7 1 4 Middle East and North Africa 7 1 4 1 Iran 7 1 4 2 Iraq 7 1 4 3 Egypt 7 1 5 Europe 7 1 5 1 Romania 7 1 6 North America 7 1 6 1 USA 7 1 7 South America 7 1 7 1 Chile 8 Ratings and viewership 8 1 List of highest rated series on terrestrial television 8 1 1 By household rating 8 1 2 By viewers 8 2 List of highest rated series on cable television 8 2 1 By household rating 8 2 2 By viewers 9 See also 10 Footnotes 11 References 12 BibliographyFormat Edit Yongin Daejanggeum Park a filming site where historical dramas for Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation are produced South Korea started to broadcast television series in the 1960s In the 1990s traditional historical series transformed into the present miniseries format creating the notion of fusion sageuks A single director usually leads Korean dramas which are often written by a single screenwriter This often leads to each drama having distinct directing and dialogue styles This differs from American television series which can rely on multiple directors and writers working together 2 Series set in contemporary times typically run for a single season and usually contain 12 to 24 episodes of 60 minutes each Historical series may be longer with up to 200 episodes but they also generally run for only one season This differs from American television series where the first season does not have a definitive end as the plot is being set up to last for multiple seasons citation needed The broadcast time for drama series has been 22 00 to 23 00 with episodes airing on two consecutive nights Mondays and Tuesdays Wednesdays and Thursdays or weekends Most of these drama series appear on each of the nationwide networks SBS Korean Broadcasting System KBS Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation MBC and on the cable channels including Channel A JTBC TV CHOSUN tvN SKY and OCN Some of drama series might turn into seasonal serials just like famous American weekday drama series The 19 00 to 21 00 evening time slot usually have been reserved for daily dramas which run every night from Monday through Friday Dramas in these slots are in the telenovela format rarely running over 150 episodes Unlike American soap operas these daily dramas are not broadcast during the daytime Instead the daytime schedule often includes reruns of the flagship dramas The night time dailies can achieve very high ratings During late 2000s for example not only the weekend series First Wives Club recorded 41 3 according to TNS Korea 3 and also the evening series Temptation of Wife peaked at 40 6 according to TNS Korea 4 During early 2010s as side footnote KBS1 Weekend Household Opera serials for family like Please Marry Me Ojakgyo Family My Husband Got a Family Wang s Family and What Happens to My Family gained such a popularity reputation and influence Many Korean dramas follow the live shoot model and thus are usually shot within a very tight schedule sometimes finishing just a few hours before actual broadcast Screenplays are flexible and may change anytime during production depending on viewers feedback which can be difficult for production teams Plots and storylines Edit K dramas have a multitude of different genres such as action dramas historical dramas school dramas medical dramas legal dramas or even horror comedies While most dramas carry romantic elements and deep emotional themes there are various styles and tones 5 The main themes of Korean television dramas are friendship family values and love blending traditional values of Confucianism with Western materialism and individualism 6 However it is an emerging trend amongst Korean dramas to showcase ongoing societal issues of Korean society such as stigma of mental illness 7 gender inequality suicide classism bullying spy cameras corruption homophobia or racism 8 Historical Edit Main article Sageuk The term sageuk refers to any Korean television or film drama that is either based on historical figures incorporates historical events or uses a historical backdrop While sageuk literally translates to historical drama the term is typically reserved for dramas taking place throughout the course of Korean history 9 Since the mid 2000s some sageuks have achieved major success outside of Korea such as Asia Pacific Central Asia Greater Middle East Central and Eastern Europe and Latin America 10 Sageuks including Dae Jang Geum Jewel in the Palace Yi San and Jumong enjoyed strong ratings and high satisfaction ratings in countries such Vietnam Uzbekistan Kazakhstan Fiji and Iran Jumong which aired on IRIB Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting in 2008 had 85 viewership 11 Romance Edit Often centered around a love story series set in contemporary times often focus on family ties and romantic relationships Characters are mostly idealized with Korean male protagonists described as handsome intelligent emotional and in search of one true love This has also been a contributing factor to the popularity of Korean dramas among women as the image of Korean men became differentiated from that of other Asian men 2 12 13 14 The romantic tension typically is built up so expertly that it is more emotionally resonant when the main couple finally hold hands halfway through the series than when a full blown bedroom scene happens in an American series Also due to Korea s culture love scenes rarely progress past kissing and even seeing a Deep tongue kiss in a Korean drama is newsworthy 15 History EditEarly years Edit Radio broadcasting including the broadcasting of radio dramas in Korea began in 1927 under Japanese rule with most programming in Japanese and around 30 in Korean 16 After the Korean War radio dramas such as Cheongsilhongsil 1954 reflected the country s mood 17 Television broadcasting began in 1956 with the launch of an experimental station HLKZ TV which was shut down a few years later due to a fire The first national television channel was Korean Broadcasting System KBS which started up in 1961 18 The first Korean television film was a 15 minute piece titled The Gate of Heaven 천국의 문 Cheongugui mun on HLKZ TV 19 The first television series was aired by KBS in 1962 Their commercial competitor Tongyang Broadcasting TBC had a more aggressive program policy and aired controversial dramas as well 20 The first historical TV series aired was Gukto manri 국토만리 directed by Kim Jae hyeong 김재형 depicting the Goryeo era 21 22 In the 1960s television sets were of limited availability thus dramas could not reach a larger audience 23 In the 1970s television sets started to spread among the general population and dramas switched from portraying dramatic historical figures to introducing national heroes like Lee Sun shin or Sejong the Great 23 Contemporary series dealt with personal sufferings such as Kim Soo hyun s influential Stepmother 새엄마 Saeeomma aired by Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation MBC in 1972 and 1973 24 As technology and funding was limited Korean channels could not make series in resource heavy genres like action and science fiction American and other foreign series were imported instead 25 1980s 2010s Edit Chae Shi ra the leading actress of Eyes of Dawn 1991 Actress Lee Young ae played the titular Dae Jang Geum in the series of the same name The 1980s saw a change in Korean television as color TV became available Modern dramas tried to evoke nostalgia from urban dwellers by depicting rural life Kim Soo hyun s first real commercial success Love and Ambition 사랑과 야망 Saranggwa yamang aired on MBC in 1987 and is regarded as a milestone of Korean television 26 having recorded a 78 viewership Streets became quiet at around the airing time of the drama as practically everyone in the country was at home in front of the TV according to The Korea Times 17 The most outstanding classical historical series of the era is considered to be 500 Years of Joseon 조선왕조500년 Joseonwangjo 500 nyeon a serial that ran for eight years consisting of 11 separate series The serial was produced by Lee Byung hoon who later directed one of the biggest international successes of Korean drama Dae Jang Geum 21 23 26 The 1990s brought another important milestone for Korean television As technology developed new opportunities arose and the beginning of the decade marked the launch of a new commercial channel Seoul Broadcasting System SBS which facilitated and re initiated a race for catching viewers attention 27 The first real commercial success among Korean television series was Eyes of Dawn 여명의 눈동자 Yeomyeongui nundongja aired in 1991 by MBC starring Chae Shi ra and Choi Jae sung The series led the viewers through turbulent times from the Japanese rule to the Korean War 27 New channel SBS also produced successful series one of them being Sandglass in 1995 Sandglass was a trendy drama which the Korean Culture and Information Service considers an important milestone having changed the way Korean dramas are made by introducing a new format 27 In this decade the new miniseries format became widespread with 12 to 24 episodes 28 This era marked the start of export for Korean dramas setting off the Korean Wave The beginning years of the 2000s gave birth to famous Korean dramas and also marked the period of overseas distribution of Korean dramas Some popular ones are Full House Autumn in my heart and Winter Sonata It is marks the birth of a new genre called fusion sageuk essentially changing the ways to produce historical series with successful pieces such as Hur Jun Damo and Dae Jang Geum 21 Since the 2010s web dramas has become a popular genre It is a short form of drama mostly streamed on video streaming service such as Naver TV and YouTube citation needed It started to take over the popularity of conventional dramas among 10s and 20s because the shorter runtime and often feature trendy contents which teenagers are easy to sympathize with 29 Webtoon dramas are also another drama type that is gaining popularity These dramas are adapted from comic strips called webtoons As such the plot is more imaginary instead of realistic and add to the diverse content of K dramas Some notable webtoon dramas are Cheese in the Trap Misaeng and Itaewon Class citation needed 2020s present Edit The late 2010s and 2020s saw newfound attention of K dramas from international markets 30 Bong Joon ho s 2019 film Parasite became the first South Korean film to win the Academy Award for Best Picture in addition to numerous other film accolades 31 Netflix had begun seeking productions from South Korea and other countries since around 2018 to expand offerings for their service with a growing international audience These efforts came to fruition when Hwang Dong hyuk s Squid Game drew in more than 111 million viewers within 17 days of its released in September 2021 become the service s most watched program 30 In the 2020s several dramas began to produce dramas even before the first season was aired keeping in mind the season system The most representative series is The Penthouse War in Life series which gained sensational popularity as it aired over three seasons The biggest reason why Korean dramas introduced the season system is interpreted as changes in the industry due to the 52 hour workweek viewers rejection of feature length dramas and excessive supply of dramas 32 At the same time MBC and tvN s anomalous organization began to be criticized a lot tvN extended one episode of the drama to 2 hours and 20 minutes delaying it to the late night of another drama In particular the running time of the last episode of Hospital Playlist was close to three hours but even though it was reduced after editing it delayed the formation of the next The Road The Tragedy of One to late night as it passed two hours 33 and MBC canceled Telenobella The Second Husband and reruned the push drama The Veil at that time 34 35 36 37 Production EditKorean series were originally produced in house by the television channels themselves but have been outsourced to independent production companies since the 2000s In 2012 as much as 75 of all K dramas were produced this way Competition is fierce among these companies out of 156 registered firms only 34 produced dramas were actually aired in 2012 38 The budget of the production is shared between the producing company and the broadcaster with the broadcasting channel covering around 50 of expenses usually If top stars and famous scriptwriters are employed they may cover even more The rest of the budget has to be brought in by the production company with the help of sponsors In the case of product placements income is shared by the producer and the channel The channel keeps 100 of the advertisement income during airtime this could amount to 300 400 million 2020s A typical Korean drama may cost as much as 700 million per episode historical dramas cost more than that Recently factors such as improving the production environment along with whether to sign contracts with domestic and foreign OTT companies such as Netflix have served as variables For example Kingdom 2 billion per episode 38 39 40 In Korea much of the budget is spent on the appearance fees of top stars since they are heavily dependent on celebrities popularity 2 In some cases the actors may take up as much as 55 65 of the whole budget while it is 20 30 in Japan and roughly 10 in the United States as dramas there tend to avoid casting famous actors when starting off 38 Everything else including salaries of lesser known actors extras and technical staff location rent and other expenses have to be covered from the remaining amount Often production companies overrun their budgets and cannot pay salaries In 2012 actors held a demonstration in front of the headquarters of KBS expressing their concerns Actors are usually paid after the last episode is aired at the end of the month In series made by smaller production companies for cable channels there have been cases where the companies went bankrupt and could not pay their actors and crew while the channel denied all responsibility claiming all liability was with the bankrupt production firm 41 Producer Kim Jong hak spent as much as 10 billion on Faith which was considered a commercial failure resulting in the inability of Kim to pay crew salaries and other overheads Kim who had produced successful dramas such as Eyes of Dawn and Sandglass committed suicide after he was accused of embezzlement 42 43 The biggest stars may earn as much as 100 million per episode 44 Bae Yong joon the star of Winter Sonata reportedly received 250 million per episode for The Legend in 2007 38 Filmmaking process Edit Song Joong ki of Descendants of the Sun is considered a top star Kim Soo hyun in costume for the sageuk Moon Embracing the Sun Soo hyun is one of the most popular Korean actors 45 46 As producing a series involves high expenses production companies seek to shoot the episodes in the shortest time possible In contrast to practices elsewhere the first four episodes of Korean series are usually shot in advance but the rest are shot continuously as the series is being aired Scripts are not finished in advance and may change according to viewer feedback and viewership ratings where popular characters receive increased screen time and plotlines are changed to match audience expectations 47 These changes may occur a few hours before daily shooting and the crew might receive only a few ready pages The production usually works with three camera crews who work in a rotating manner to speed up filming Because of unregulated script changes and tight shooting schedules actors are almost continuously on standby and have no time to leave the set or sleep properly The Korean media have a separate word to describe irregular short sleeps that actors resort to in often uncomfortable positions or within the set jjok jam 쪽잠 or side sleeping Dramas usually air two episodes a week one after the other with the following episodes having to be shot within the intervening five days Some Korean actors have admitted to receiving IV therapy during filming due to extreme schedules and exhaustion 41 44 48 Nonetheless the live shoot model remains widely used since the production team can react to real time audience feedback 47 Production teams originally sent two tapes to the channels a primary copy and a backup copy However due to the tight filming schedules a 70 minute episode might arrive at the broadcasting station on seven separate tapes in ten minute installments It happens that while the episode is being broadcast the crew would be still shooting the last minutes or cutting the rest of the episode During the airing of the nineteenth episode of Man from the Equator screens countrywide went black for 10 minutes Actor Kwon Sang woo was openly complaining that he was still shooting Queen of Ambition 30 minutes before the last episode began airing 41 In South Korea some production teams still do planning and scheduling manually instead of using dedicated software 49 From late 2014 onwards due to the popularity of Korean dramas abroad especially the success of My Love from the Star in China producers have increasingly been pitching and pre selling the overseas broadcast and streaming rights of their dramas This has given production teams the budget to move away from the live shoot basis to one in which the drama is completed before broadcast In 2016 dramas such as Descendants of the Sun Uncontrollably Fond Moon Lovers Scarlet Heart Ryeo and Hwarang The Poet Warrior Youth were all pre produced before airing Nonetheless some pre produced episodes are often re edited or even reshot the day of airing due to audience feedback 47 The larger broadcasting companies have their own dedicated shooting locations for historical dramas with extensive and elaborate sets MBC s series are shot at MBC Drama in Gyeonggi 50 while KBS dramas utilize the Mungyeongsaejae Studio 문경새재 KBS촬영장 in North Gyeongsang 51 and their studio in Suwon 52 Production companies Edit See also Category Television production companies of South Korea Independent production companies are classified into Those founded and or owned by industry veterans e g Kim Jong hak Production Logos Film iWill Media Owned by the broadcast companies e g Studio S Monster Union MBC C amp I JTBC Studios Owned by entertainment companies e g Studio Dragon LOTTE CULTUREWORKS SM Life Design Group YG STUDIOPLEX studio amp NEW Studio Santa Claus Entertainment Big tiered e g Pan Entertainment Chorokbaem Media Small tieredCrew EditActors and actresses Edit Further information List of South Korean actresses and List of South Korean male actors The leading actors of Korean dramas have become popular outside of South Korea due to the Korean Wave In the 2000s it became customary to cast popular K pop idols in dramas Initially this generated mixed reactions Their appearance had provoked predominantly negative reactions outside their fandom because singers and dancers acting outside of their musical circle was regarded as unprofessional Also some idols were criticized for poor acting Nowadays this has become much more common feature in Korean dramas as the public has been getting more used to the concept of idol actors and some idols have become known for their excellent acting skills 53 Their critical reception is still mixed however some of them like Bae Suzy IU Seo In guk Ok Taecyeon and Im Yoon ah became successful as actors and actresses 54 55 56 There were also instances of children taking up careers as child actors or actresses usually portraying either the younger versions of some characters or the children of the adult characters from dramas Subsequently there were some child actors and actresses who continue pursuing acting careers even after reaching adulthood and with some achieving success even after adulthood Notably such people include actors like Yoo Seung ho and Yeo Jin goo and actresses like Kim So hyun Lee Se young Nam Ji hyun Kim Hyang gi Park Shin hye and Kim Yoo jung 57 Scriptwriters and directors Edit Scriptwriters and directors of Korean dramas are often as well known as actors are An overwhelming majority of scriptwriters 90 according to the Beijing Metro Reader are women who not only write love stories but action series as well 58 Compared to Korean cinema television is more appealing for scriptwriters as contract conditions are better acknowledgment is greater and the salary is higher Famous scriptwriters tend to have a say in their field 59 The most well known scriptwriters include the Hong sisters who wrote popular series such as My Girl You re Beautiful and My Girlfriend Is a Nine Tailed Fox Kim Soon ok the screenwriter of The Penthouse War in Life The Last Empress Band of Sisters Jang Bo ri is Here and Temptation of Wife Kim Eun sook the screenwriter of Lovers in Paris Secret Garden The Heirs Descendants of the Sun and Guardian The Lonely and Great God Lee Kyung hee famous for I m Sorry I Love You and The Innocent Man male writer Choi Wan kyu of Midas and Triangle Noh Hee kyung the author of That Winter the Wind Blows and It s Okay That s Love and Park Ji eun who wrote My Husband Got a Family My Love from the Star The Producers Legend of the Blue Sea and Crash Landing on You 60 In particular writer Kim Soon ok is famous for captivating male viewers who did not watch dramas well Kim Soon ok s work is so popular that articles are constantly posted called Soon ok Queen 61 In 2021 an article called Kim Soon ok Kim Eun sook and Kim Eun hee was also published referring to star writers 62 Acknowledged TV directors include Lee Byung hoon who directed Hur Jun Dae Jang Geum and Yi San 21 Kim Jong hak the director of Eyes of Dawn Sandglass The Legend and The Great Doctor 63 and Pyo Min soo ko the director of Full House Worlds Within and Iris II 64 While scriptwriters are mostly women directors are usually men 65 Some female directors have risen to prominence such as Lee Na jeong 이나정 who directed The Innocent Man 66 and Lee Yun jeong 이윤정 whose most famous works are The 1st Shop of Coffee Prince and Heart to Heart The latter director is also the first female television producer employed by Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation MBC 67 Music Edit Balladeer Baek Ji young has been named OST Queen after providing the songs for several hit dramas such as Secret Garden 2010 and Love in the Moonlight 2016 Music plays an important role in Korean dramas Original soundtracks abbreviated OST s are explicitly made for each series and in contrast to American series fans have a need to buy the soundtrack album of dramas This trend started in the 1990s when producers swapped purely instrumental soundtracks for songs performed by popular K pop singers Tom Larsen director of YA Entertainment a distributor of Korean TV series thinks that Korean soundtracks are polished enough musically to be considered standalone hits 68 During the 2000s it became customary for lead actors to participate in original soundtracks also partially due to the employment of K pop stars as actors Actor Lee Min ho and leader of boy band SS501 Kim Hyun joong both recorded songs for Boys Over Flowers while the actors of You re Beautiful formed a fictional band and held concerts where they perform the soundtracks live 69 70 71 OST songs of popular K dramas can also become hits on regular music charts with good sales of both physical and digital albums The chart performance of the OST songs usually co relate to the popularity of the drama Songs from the OST of Secret Garden for example had high digital sales and high rankings on music charts 72 My Destiny performed by Lyn for My Love from the Star led music charts in Hong Kong Taiwan South Korea and other Asian countries 73 It also won the Best OST award at the 2014 Baeksang Arts Awards 74 The soundtrack album of You re Beautiful sold 57 000 physical copies 75 Performers of OST songs for action series Iris held two concerts in Japan in front of an audience of 60 000 people 76 Although the songs in Korean dramas may have only a selective few or are repetitive the choosing of the songs are not that easy of a process An example of this can be found in the OST for the Korean drama Guardian The Lonely and Great God Songs usually are made to convey emotions or scenes especially in dramas and the emotion was assigned to be conveyed by Rocoberry was suffering and beauty Rocoberry is a Korean indie pop duo with the members of Roco and conan and they are famous for composing songs in Korean dramas Even though they had quite the experience with composing songs for Guardian The Lonely and Great God they had to create 12 different compositions for this drama until finally one of their most famous songs I Will Go to You Like the First Snow was chosen Not only did it take 12 compositions for this song to be chosen but after the approval of this songs there had to be 7 rewrites until it was finally complete and met the satisfaction standards of the production team link The song was used in only two episodes despite the hard process The song was placed in two scenes that later on were shown to be connected to each other and also became some of the most important scenes in the drama This is only the beginning of understanding how much time and effort goes into the choosing of songs for these types of dramas and how they can enhance a scene in many different ways 77 OST composers usually look for singers who have previously had success in the genre Songs are written to reflect the mood of the series and their structure Sometimes performers give their own songs for a series For example Baek Ji young thought her song That Man originally written for her own album would fit Secret Garden There are popular OST singers who are often employed like Baek Ji young Lyn and Lee Seung cheol 78 Sometimes foreign singers are invited to perform songs for Korean OST For instance Swedish artist Lasse Lindh sang several songs for series like Angel Eyes Soul Mate I Need Romance and Guardian The Lonely and Great God Rating system EditFurther information Television content rating systems South Korea The television rating system is regulated by the Korea Communications Commission and was implemented in 2000 According to the system programs including Korean dramas are rated according to the following principles ratings irrelevant to dramas are omitted 79 programs that may be inappropriate for children under 12 such as mild violence suggestive themes or language programs that may be inappropriate for children under 15 Most dramas and talk shows are rated this way These programs may include moderate or strong adult themes language sexual inference and violence programs intended for adults only These programs might include adult themes sexual situations frequent use of strong language and disturbing scenes of violence Reception Edit Princess Hours teddy bear exhibition at N Seoul Tower 2012 According to a researcher at the University of Vienna popularity of Korean dramas have their foundation in Confucian values they transmit which Asian viewers can easily identify with Respect for elders filial piety family orientedness and the display of perceived Asian moral values play an important role in Korean series 80 YA Entertainment the American distributor of Korean dramas believes that part of the attractiveness of these series come from the quality of camera work scenic locations and spectacular costumes which make the final product very stylish and attractive with arguably some of the highest TV production values in the world 81 Korean series follow their own formula are innovative and don t conform to Western television productions 81 Stephan Lee from Entertainment Weekly called Korean dramas fascinating and weirdly comforting 82 Exports of Korean series yielded US 37 5 million in 2003 which was three times higher than the amount reached in 1999 83 According to data from Korea Creative Content Agency in 2013 K dramas constituted 82 of the culture content export of South Korea with an income of 167 million which is four times more than a decade before 49 A driving force behind the rising popularity is the intense involvement of fans Because of the live shooting production of K dramas Korean speaking fans have the opportunity to participate in their creation 84 a unique phenomenon in the mass media world They can influence the content of later shows in the series through complaints and suggestions which are frequently adopted by the production teams 85 The global community of non Korean speaking fans on the other hand is more involved in the consumption aspects Fans share their opinions through tweets and comments on newsgroups for example the Soompi discussion forum as well as reviews and recaps on websites and blogs However the impact of their social media activity goes beyond the fan community It spreads the word about the K drama genre to social connections like acquaintances friends and family e g Facebook friends or followers on Twitter and thereby generally raises its popularity But it also has an effect on the creation of new dramas It influences the popularity of certain dramas leading to higher demand for those videos from streaming sites and additional income for broadcasters When a substantial profit results it raises not only the prestige of people involved in the production 86 but also provides feedback for production teams and indirectly influences future productions International reception Edit East Asia Edit Won Bin gained wide popularity in 2000 after starring in the television drama Autumn in My Heart and has since gained critical acclaim for his performances in the films Taegukgi Mother and The Man from Nowhere 87 88 89 90 China Edit In China South Korean programs on Chinese government TV networks accounted for more than all other foreign programs combined in 2006 91 Hong Kong has its own channel for airing Korean dramas TVB J2 but ATV also airs Korean series in prime time slots 92 My Love from the Star received enthusiastic feedback from China It was viewed 40 billion times on numerous Chinese video sites 93 The drama also spurred interest about Korea shown by China s increased consumption of Korean products such as Chi Maek chicken and beer and Korean cosmetics 94 Due to the success of Korean dramas in China some dramas have been compiled to create feature length films by combining all episodes into one film The prodigious popularity of Korean dramas in the country has on some occasions been caught in the crossfire over diplomatic issues between China and South Korea Most notable being the THAAD deployment in South Korea which resulted in the blocking of Korean dramas on streaming services across the country in late February 2017 95 Following the block Chinese TV shows showcasing Chinese culture and other similar content replaced Korean content on TV networks prime time schedules in the country 96 In November 2017 the ban was lifted unannounced following the appearance of Kpop groups on national TV and the move to resume importation of Korean dramas by Chinese streaming services 97 In China apps like IQiyi which is currently also available in Malaysia Singapore Taiwan and some other countries in multiple different subtitles are available to stream and download Korean dramas for viewing Japan Edit The first Korean drama to gain widespread popularity in Japan was Winter Sonata which was broadcast on the NHK satellite channel NHK BS2 in 2003 The program was aired twice in the same year due to high demand from viewers 14 NHK also hosted a classical concert featuring Winter Sonata s tunes performed by Korean musicians 14 Korean dramas boost tourism between Korea and Japan 14 and is considered a possible way of improving strained relationships between the two countries as series have become increasingly popular with Japanese viewers 98 99 Conversely the series Iris had several pivotal scenes shot in Akita Japan which led to an increase of Korean tourists in that part of Japan 100 101 102 Mongolia Edit In Mongolia Korean dramas have become popular and are broadcast at prime time Dae Jang Geum achieved success in the country and was broadcast five times due to this Autumn in My Heart Winter Sonata and Stairway to Heaven were other popular dramas Popularity in Korean dramas has resulted in interest in the learning of the Korean language as well as Mongolians travelling to South Korea It has also led to increased mutually cooperative relations between Mongolia and South Korea 103 North Korea Edit Watching films or TV dramas from South Korea is a serious offence in North Korea punishable by execution 104 but people still manage to acquire them on CDs and DVDs 105 In 2021 there was an article that young people who were watching the popular drama The Penthouse War in Life were caught in Pyeongseong si Pyeongnam do and were should be forced to serve more than 10 years Later the residents of Yanggang do began to imitate the famous lines from the Penthouse series and the residents were also unable to avoid punishment 106 107 Taiwan Edit In Taiwan interest in Korean dramas began when Star in My Heart aired in 1999 Since then Korean dramas have become very popular and according to the South Korean mission 120 K dramas had been broadcast in Taiwan in the first half of 2011 108 109 Southeast Asia Edit Brunei Edit In recent times Korean dramas have experienced growing popularity in Brunei The growing impact of Korean culture in Brunei led to the hosting of the ninth Korea Forum in the country at Universiti Brunei Darussalam in 2010 Korean television dramas movies music and clothing have had a great impact on the people of Brunei 110 Cambodia Edit The first Korean drama to be broadcast in Cambodia was Winter Sonata it was however Full House that launched the interest in Korean dramas and entertainment in the country Following the success of Full House more Korean dramas have been dubbed into the Khmer language Korean dramas have become popular particularly amongst youth in Cambodia 111 Indonesia Edit In Indonesia Korean dramas have gained popularity and the popular Korean dramas Winter Sonata and Endless Love were aired on Surya Citra Media in 2002 Some Korean dramas have also been remade into Indonesian versions such as Demi Cinta in 2005 which was a remake of the popular drama Autumn in My Heart and Cinta Sejati a remake of Stairway to Heaven RCTI and Indosiar are examples of Indonesian television networks that air Korean dramas in the early times but later Trans TV airing some of popular Korean dramas until today 112 113 Laos Edit The popularity of Korean dramas and pop culture in Laos has led to many Laotian tourists travelling to South Korea Korean pop culture has gained popularity in Laos through the Thai TV channels broadcasting Korean dramas and K pop bands in the country 114 Malaysia Edit In Malaysia Winter Sonata began airing on TV3 in 2003 which started an interest in Korean pop culture in the country Dae Jang Geum and Autumn In My Heart were also aired in Malaysia The popularity of Korean dramas have resulted in a positive reception of Korean expatriates in Malaysia 115 Myanmar Edit In Myanmar the K drama Autumn in My Heart was broadcast in the country in 2001 which led to interest in Korean entertainment When Dae Jang Geum was on air the drama sparked an interest in Korean cuisine in the country 116 The rising popularity of Korean dramas and music in Myanmar has led to the Korea Foundation for International Culture Exchange KOFICE distributing Korean dramas in the country for free 117 Philippines Edit See also South Korean television dramas in the Philippines In the Philippines Korean dramas are politically popular on free to air television since 2003 GMA Network ABS CBN and TV5 are regularly airing Korean dramas dubbed in Tagalog As of the 2020s GMA Network has the highest number of Korean dramas broadcast in the Philippines 118 Singapore Edit In Singapore Prime 12 now known as Suria originally aired the Korean drama Sandglass on a weekly basis in 1996 and aired Asphalt Man in 1997 Since 2001 they are shown on Chinese language channel MediaCorp Channel U daily 119 The launch of KBS World ONE TV ASIA Oh K Channel M and streaming app Viu in Singapore allows viewers to watch Korean dramas with a variety of subtitles in a matter of hours after the original South Korean telecast 120 Currently Singaporeans also get access to Korean dramas through China originated online platform IQIYI which first soft launched its app in 2019 and planned to expand its international bases in Singapore 121 122 Thailand Edit When Dae Jang Geum was on air in Thailand Korean food started gaining wide popularity 123 Due to the lop sided nature of entertainment exports favoring South Korea the Thai government requested increased introduction of popular Thai films to South Korean media outlets This led to the signing of an Agreement of Cultural Cooperation between the two countries in August 2004 124 Vietnam Edit Korean dramas have also gained popularity in Vietnam particularly among women and young people The fashion and hairstyles presented in Korean dramas have become very popular among the youth of the country 125 South Asia Edit Actor Lee Min ho achieved pan Asia popularity with his hit dramas Boys Over Flowers 2009 The Heirs 2013 and The Legend of the Blue Sea 2016 Bangladesh Edit Korean dramas have gained popularity in Bangladesh in recent years 126 Their rising popularity in the country has led to the Korea Foundation for International Culture Exchange KOFICE an organisation which aims to distribute Korean dramas for free to countries cooperating with broadcasters to distribute Korean dramas for free in the country 127 With the growing number of K drama fans in Bangladesh more and more Facebook groups are popping up giving them a platform to share their love of the shows with fellow K drama enthusiasts and take part in events and activities hosted by the groups One of the largest Bangladeshi K Drama groups BD K Family arranges a yearly get together for its members Other popular Facebook K Drama groups include K Drama Archive BD Korean Lovers Bangladesh and BD Korean Drama Fam all of which create opportunities for both local and international fans to participate in discussions about their favourite shows 128 Bhutan Edit In the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan Korean dramas and entertainment have gained popularity particularly amongst youth Prior to interest in Korean entertainment Bollywood had largely been the most popular form of entertainment in the country When the Bhutanese film industry launched in the mid 1990s Bollywood was the only form of influence on the industry However in recent years Korean entertainment has made significant inroads in the country and influence the entertainment industry alongside Bollywood Korean entertainment has managed to influence fashion and many video shops now sell Korean dramas and movies alongside Bollywood films The interest in Korean entertainment has also led to controversy with older generations voicing their concern that Korean entertainment will deteriorate Bhutanese culture and traditions 129 130 India Edit In India after the late 1990s and around 2000 Korean dramas started becoming popular through piracy particularly in north eastern states such as Manipur Assam Meghalaya Sikkim Arunachal Pradesh Tripura Mizoram and Nagaland as well as parts of eastern state like West Bengal and more recently in southern state Tamil Nadu 131 132 Hindi films and TV serials were banned in Manipur in 2000 as a result local television stations began broadcasting subtitled Korean dramas instead from Arirang TV and KBS World 133 134 Many young people in north eastern eastern and southern parts of India mimic the hairstyles clothes of Korean actors while Korean fashion became very popular in the region 135 136 137 As part of cultural exchange public broadcaster Doordarshan telecasted Emperor of the Sea and Dae Jang Geum 138 Korean dramas are dubbed in Tamil on Puthuyugam TV such as Boys over flowers My love from another star Playful Kiss and many more 139 Full House and Hwang Jini started airing on Firangi channel in 2008 Reliance Big TV offered KBS World to its subscribers from 2009 on satellite television Local fan clubs got help from Consul General of the Republic of Korea while Korean Cultural Centre in India KCCI under South Korean embassy started mapping popularity of K dramas 140 As per KCCI the motivation to understand Korean drama properly without subtitles is driving the uptake of Korean language classes among the youth with females outnumbering males 141 DD Bharati broadcast period drama Hur Jun in 2014 that received highest viewer ratings of 34 million from January to October 2014 Online streaming platform ZEE5 launched Descendants of the Sun to test the Indian market from 8 February to 1 March 2017 and found overwhelming positive response for Korean content with viewer ship ran close to 56 million 134 The telecast of Korean drama on Cable TV in 2017 stopped as Korean Broadcasting System Network wanted to raise syndication charges due to accumulation of large viewer ship base in India that included pockets of Bihar Kerala and Uttar Pradesh due to short 16 to 20 episodes format that are easier for binge watching 142 143 With increasing interest in Korean content among younger generation from tier 1 cities Samsung through its My Galaxy mobile application is partnering with Korean Broadcasting System KBS in 2019 to bring exclusive content for 20 million Indian users 144 With COVID 19 pandemic Dish TV started premium K dramas dubbed in Hindi and Tamil 145 Korean dramas are also driving highest viewer ship on Netflix with second season of TV series Kingdom attained the Top 10 series row as of March 2020 It s Okay to Not Be Okay is on Netflix Top 10 list in India for several weeks in August 2020 which has jumped to number 3 position Netflix is increasing investment on Korean content to capture the Indian market 146 Over the top media service OTT MX Player confirmed rising popularity and demand of Korean dramas among millennial population especially the women audience and is now making deals with South Korean television and radio network company Seoul Broadcasting System SBS to bring more content in India Korean dramas and films became most visited category for ShortsTV in India 147 As per media experts the relatable themes in Korean content is fast catching the imagination of general public of almost every age group that is going mainstream and driving highest viewing especially after 92nd Academy Awards winning movie Parasite due to the shared Asian cultural heritage and societal values 148 149 150 As per Parrot Analytics report k drama series Crash Landing on You is on demand 1 2 times than an average TV series that is 89 8 more than all drama titles shown in India forcing broadcasters to make extra slots as women are at the forefront of consumer demand in Korean content category 151 152 The COVID 19 lockdown in India proved to be an inflection point in 2020 2021 when Korean drama moved from a niche sub culture segment to mainstream due to services like Netflix Rakuten Viki and YouTube It penetrated to every age group and social background The popularity of Korean drama forced many over the top media service in India such as MX Player Viu and ZEE5 to bring the dubbed versions in local language that will help cater to large non English speaking audience 153 154 155 Nepal Edit Interest for Korean dramas in the Nepal began when Winter Sonata aired on Kantipur Television Network in the mid 2000s This led to the popularity of other K dramas such as Boys Over Flowers Autumn In My Heart You Are Beautiful and Full House to name a few Popularity of Korean media products has also led to interest of learning the Korean language and has resulted in the emergence of Korean language tutorials that air on ABC Television in the country Korean dramas have become popular among Nepali youth and markets are often frequented by teenagers looking to buy the latest dramas The hairstyles and fashion of Korean actors have influenced the fashion sense of Nepali youth Fascinated by the lifestyle and food of Korea restaurants serving Korean cuisine have also been established in the country 156 157 Sri Lanka Edit In Sri Lanka the Independent Television Network aired Full House in 2009 and it proved popular Dae Jang Geum aired on Rupavahini in 2012 and was dubbed in Sinhala under the title Sujatha Diyani ස ජ ත ද යණ meaning The Pure Valuable Daughter and received a viewer rate of over 90 158 The Independent Television Network Rupavahini TV Derana Sirasa TV Swarnavahini and TV1 air Korean dramas dubbed in the Sinhalese language 159 160 Streaming service Iflix also streams many Korean dramas with English and Sinhalese subtitles in the country some as early as 24 hours after their original Korean broadcast 161 Additionally the popularity of Korean pop culture in the country has led to an increasingly warm reception towards Korean people 162 Middle East and North Africa Edit Since the mid 2000s Israel Iran Morocco and Egypt have become major consumers of Korean culture 163 164 Following the success of Korean dramas in the Middle East amp North Africa the Korean Overseas Information Service made Winter Sonata available with Arabic subtitles on several state run Egyptian television networks According to Youna Kim 2007 The broadcast was part of the government s efforts to improve the image of South Korea in the Middle East where there is little understanding and exposure towards Korean culture p 31 165 The New York Times reported that the intent behind this was to contribute towards positive relations between Arab amp Berber audiences and South Korean soldiers stationed in northern Iraq 166 MBC4 Middle East Broadcasting Channel played a major role in increasing the Korean wave s popularity in the MENA region Middle East and North Africa This broadcasting channel hosted a series of Korean drama starting 2013 such as Boys Over Flowers أيام الزهور You re Beautiful أنت جميلة Dream High حلم الشباب Coffee Prince مقهى الأمير Some Arab countries opposed Korean content dramas reality show out of fear that their youth would abandon Islamic traditions in order to adopt Western modernity 167 However this did not stop the Korean industries from exporting more Korean Dramas to the Arab world in the following years such as The Heirs الورثة The popularity of Korean dramas in the MENA region and its continuous growth originates from the content of these dramas As the majority of the plots of Korean dramas focus on social issues love between different social classes or family problems for instance 168 the Arab audiences fit themselves and could relate to the Korean socio cultural values as they seem appealing to them So Korean dramas play the role of an equilibrium point where two somehow different cultures could create a new cultural space where these two different cultures could meet Iran Edit Iran s state broadcaster Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting IRIB aired several Korean dramas during prime time slots in recent years with this decision attributed by some to their Confucian values of respect for others which are closely aligned to Islamic culture 169 while in contrast Western productions often fail to satisfy the criteria set by Iran s Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance 170 In October 2012 the Tehran Times reported that IRIB representatives visited South Korea to visit filming locations in an effort to strengthen cultural affinities between the two countries and to seek avenues for further cooperation between KBS and IRIB 171 172 According to Reuters until recently audiences in Iran have had little choice in broadcast material and thus programs that are aired by IRIB often attain higher viewership ratings in Iran than in South Korea for example the most popular episodes of Jumong attracted over 90 of Iranian audience compared to 40 in South Korea propelling its lead actor Song Il gook to superstar status in Iran 173 Iraq Edit In the early 2000s Korean dramas were aired for South Korean troops stationed in northern Iraq as part of coalition forces led by the United States during the Iraq War With the end of the war and the subsequent withdrawal of South Korean military personnel from the country efforts were made to expand availability of K dramas to the ordinary citizens of Iraq 174 In 2012 the Korean drama Hur Jun reportedly attained a viewership of over 90 in the Kurdistan region of Iraq 174 Its lead actor Jun Kwang ryul was invited by the federal government of Iraq to visit the city of Sulaymaniyah in Kurdistan at the special request of the country s First Lady Hero Ibrahim Ahmed Egypt Edit Autumn in My Heart one of the earliest Korean dramas brought over to the Middle East was made available for viewing after five months of persistent negotiations between the South Korean embassy and an Egyptian state run broadcasting company Shortly after the series ended the embassy reported that it had received over 400 phone calls and love letters from fans from all over the country 175 According to the secretary of the South Korean embassy in Cairo Lee Ki seok Korea s involvement in the Iraq War had significantly undermined its reputation among Egyptians but the screening of Autumn in My Heart proved extremely effective in reversing negative attitudes 176 Europe Edit Romania Edit The first Korean drama in Romania was aired on TVR in August 2009 with Dae Jang Geum and in the following month it became the third most popular television program in the country 177 Since then Korean dramas have seen high ratings and further success 177 178 North America Edit USA Edit The Asian American targeted cable TV channels AZN Television and ImaginAsian aired Korean dramas alongside content from China Japan India Thailand and other parts of Asia The dramas were aimed at the Asian American community before the channels dissolved in 2008 and 2011 respectively 179 180 In November 2008 Netflix 181 began offering several Korean dramas as part of its video selection In August 2009 DramaFever began offering free subtitled video streaming service with video advertisements in the United States 182 183 Singapore based Viki streams popular Korean dramas across the world including North America with subtitles in 70 languages 184 Companies in Asia have also designed streaming services available online and as mobile apps targeted towards overseas Asian communities MobiTV created by the Sri Lankan company Bhasha is a streaming service and mobile app aimed at the Sri Lankan community and streams Korean dramas dubbed in the Sinhalese language alongside other content aired in Sri Lanka 185 Roopa created by the same company is another service available as a mobile app also aimed at the Sri Lankan community it too streams Korean dramas dubbed in the Sinhalese language 186 Chinese company PPTV is another example a mobile app PPTV网络电视HD streams Korean dramas aimed at the Chinese community alongside content that is primarily available in Mandarin Cantonese and Korean but also increasingly in English 187 188 Additionally Korean dramas are available at online DVD retailers Some Korean dramas however are not available for region 1 North America encoding and NTSC video format Amazon offers streaming of Winter Sonata for a fee 189 KBFD DT in Honolulu Hawaii broadcasts a majority of Korean dramas on its daily schedule as well as offering the programs on sale at its website and on demand through its K Life channel on Oceanic Time Warner Cable Another Honolulu outlet KHII TV devotes three hours of its Sunday afternoon schedule to Korean dramas KTSF a channel aimed at the Asian American community in San Francisco California airs Korean dramas as part of its schedule alongside content in Mandarin Tagalog Hindi Korean Vietnamese Japanese Taiwanese and Cantonese 190 South America Edit Between 2001 and 2002 South America began to absorb Korean programming The 1997 series Star in My Heart began its successful broadcast in Chile Peru and other countries in the area but these last two were where More had repercussions including an Ahn Jae wook fan club founded 191 In 2002 Winter Sonata produced by KBS 2TV became the first series in the region to match the success of Meteor Garden attracting a cult following in Asia Marketing sales including DVD sets and novels exceeded 3 5 million in Japan In 2004 then Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi noted that the series male lead was more popular than I am in Japan 192 Other Korean dramas released in later years such as Jewel in the Palace 2003 and Full House 2004 had comparable levels of success 193 Chile Edit In Chile which was one of the first countries on a global level the phenomenon of Korean wave which is also known as hallyu began with the first drama aired that was the original 1997 MBC series Star in My Heart in 2001 by Chilevision past midnight 194 and later years later in 2003 it was retransmitted by Canal 21 Chillan es in Chillan but it was not until 2006 when Stairway to Heaven was broadcast at 1 00 pm on the public television channel Television Nacional de Chile which achieved notoriety of this genre being compared to La madrastra an old very successful Chilean soap opera due to the high audience figures in its schedule competing directly with other channels it was also broadcast by TV Chile to other continents dubbed into Spanish 195 196 Ratings and viewership EditViewership ratings are provided by two companies in South Korea Nielsen Korea and TNmS 197 Originally Media Service Korea MSK was the sole company providing TV viewership ratings using people meter since 1992 but was only limited to Seoul Capital Area 197 198 In 1998 TNS Media Korea began as a rival company in partnership with Taylor Nelson Sofres TNS which extended the service to five major cities it was officially launched in June 1999 with a more sophisticated viewership rating survey technique 197 While in August 1999 AC Nielsen acquired MSK and rebranded it as AC Nielsen Korea and expanded the audience rating survey to the whole country with the aim to increase the credibility of the ratings 197 In 2005 AC Nielsen Korea signed a merger with AGB Group and AGB Nielsen Media Research was established 199 AGB Nielsen Media Research merged with KADD Nielsen Media Research in January 2013 and the official name was changed to Nielsen Korea 197 200 In 2010 TNS Media Korea was renamed to TNmS Total National Multimedia Statistics 201 197 Since late 2018 TNmS stopped providing data to the public through their websites and instead occasionally releases the ratings through news agencies such as BreakNews 202 List of highest rated series on terrestrial television Edit See also List of South Korean dramas The list was compiled from data by Nielsen Korea based on the episode of the highest viewership since 1992 203 By household rating Edit Top 50 series per nationwide household rating Series Network Nationwide household rating Nielsen Final episode date Ref1 You and I MBC 66 9 26 April 1998 204 2 First Love KBS2 65 8 20 April 1997 205 206 3 What Is Love ko MBC 64 9 31 May 1992 207 208 4 Sandglass SBS 64 5 16 February 19955 Hur Jun MBC 63 5 27 June 2000 209 6 A Sunny Place of the Young ko KBS2 62 7 12 November 1995 210 7 Sons and Daughters ko MBC 61 1 9 May 1993 205 206 8 Taejo Wang Geon KBS1 60 2 24 February 2002 211 9 Eyes of Dawn MBC 58 4 6 February 1992 212 213 10 Dae Jang Geum 57 8 23 March 2004 211 11 See and See Again ko 57 3 2 April 1999 214 12 Truth ko 56 5 24 February 200013 Lovers in Paris SBS 56 3 15 August 2004 215 14 Jealousy ko MBC 56 1 21 July 1992 216 217 15 Blowing of the Wind ko KBS2 55 8 29 March 199616 Men of the Bath House ko 53 4 1 September 1996 210 17 Gook Hee ko MBC 53 1 16 November 1999 218 219 Trap of Youth ko SBS 15 April 1999 218 219 19 Tomato ko 토마토 52 7 10 June 199920 M ko MBC 52 2 30 August 1994 220 221 21 Season of the Storm ko 52 1 30 December 1993 222 223 22 Rustic Period SBS 51 8 30 September 200323 My Mother s Sea ko MBC 51 6 26 December 1993 224 225 24 Legend of Ambition ko KBS2 50 2 25 October 1998 206 25 Ladies of the Palace ko SBS 49 9 22 July 2002 211 26 My Son s Woman ko MBC 49 7 13 April 1995 226 227 Jumong 6 March 2007 228 211 28 Tears of the Dragon KBS1 49 6 31 May 1998 211 29 My Only One KBS2 49 4 17 March 2019 229 30 Star in My Heart MBC 49 3 29 April 1997 230 231 Bread Love and Dreams KBS2 16 September 2010 232 32 My Lovely Sam Soon MBC 49 1 21 July 2005 233 33 Ambition ko 49 0 13 October 1994 234 34 The Moon of Seoul ko 48 7 16 October 1994 235 236 35 The Last Match 48 6 22 February 1994 237 238 239 240 36 All About Eve MBC 48 3 6 July 2000 241 242 Wang s Family KBS2 9 February 2014 243 38 How is Your Husband ko SBS 48 2 19 October 1993 note 1 39 Cinderella MBC 48 0 13 July 1997 248 40 All In SBS 47 7 3 April 200341 Seoyoung My Daughter KBS2 47 6 3 March 2013 249 42 Until We Can Love ko 47 1 28 February 199743 My Rosy Life 47 0 10 November 2005 250 44 Pilot ko MBC 46 2 2 November 1993 251 45 Autumn in My Heart KBS2 46 1 7 November 200046 Daughters of a Rich Family KBS2 45 9 30 April 199547 My Husband Got a Family KBS2 45 3 9 September 2012 252 48 Brilliant Legacy SBS 45 2 26 July 2009 253 49 My Golden Life KBS2 45 1 11 March 2018 254 50 Dear Heaven SBS 44 9 2 July 2006 255 By viewers Edit Top 50 series per nationwide viewers million since 2018 note 2 Series Network Nationwide viewers number in million Nielsen Final episode date Ref1 My Only One KBS2 9 246 17 March 2019 256 2 My Golden Life 8 366 11 March 2018 257 3 Once Again 6 893 13 September 2020 258 4 Marry Me Now 6 669 9 September 2018 259 5 Mother of Mine 6 247 22 September 2019 260 6 Homemade Love Story 6 145 7 March 2021 261 7 Revolutionary Sisters 5 823 18 September 2021 262 8 Beautiful Love Wonderful Life 5 693 22 March 2020 263 9 The Penthouse War in Life 2 SBS 5 601 2 April 2021 264 10 The Penthouse War in Life 5 354 5 January 2021 265 11 Young Lady and Gentleman KBS2 5 324 ongoing 266 12 Dr Romantic 2 SBS 5 210 25 February 2020 267 13 When the Camellia Blooms KBS2 4 491 21 November 2019 268 14 The Fiery Priest SBS 4 325 20 April 2019 269 15 Money Flower MBC 4 085 3 February 2018 270 16 Unasked Family KBS1 3 950 17 April 2020 271 17 Hot Stove League SBS 3 921 14 February 2020 272 18 Home for Summer KBS1 3 897 25 October 2019 273 19 Brilliant Heritage 3 852 9 October 2020 274 20 The Penthouse War in Life 3 SBS 3 778 10 September 2021 275 21 Liver or Die KBS2 3 692 14 March 2019 276 22 No Matter What KBS1 3 599 26 March 2021 277 23 Man in a Veil KBS2 3 502 10 February 2021 278 24 The Secret of My Love 3 480 9 February 2018 279 25 Sunny Again Tomorrow KBS1 3 478 2 November 2018 280 26 It s My Life 3 459 26 April 2019 281 27 Love Returns 3 330 4 May 2018 282 28 The Last Empress SBS 3 282 21 February 2019 283 29 One the Woman 3 235 6 November 2021 284 30 Taxi Driver 3 117 29 May 2021 285 31 A Pledge to God MBC 3 112 16 February 2019 286 32 Man in the Kitchen 3 082 18 March 2018 287 33 Gracious Revenge KBS2 3 080 27 March 2020 288 34 Be My Dream Family KBS1 2 951 1 October 2021 289 35 Red Shoes KBS2 2 913 ongoing 290 36 Doctor Prisoner 2 832 15 May 2019 291 37 Return SBS 2 817 22 March 2018 292 38 Miss Monte Cristo KBS2 2 808 2 July 2021 293 39 The All Round Wife KBS1 2 799 ongoing 294 40 Hyena SBS 2 789 11 April 2020 295 41 A Place in the Sun KBS2 2 754 1 November 2019 296 42 VIP SBS 2 688 24 December 2019 297 43 My Healing Love MBC 2 660 3 March 2019 298 44 Mysterious Personal Shopper KBS2 2 613 20 July 2018 299 45 Fatal Promise 2 604 28 August 2020 300 46 Black Knight The Man Who Guards Me 2 492 8 February 2018 301 47 Left Handed Wife 2 488 31 May 2019 302 48 Vagabond SBS 2 472 23 November 2019 303 49 The King Eternal Monarch 2 453 12 June 2020 304 50 Love to the End KBS2 2 445 31 December 2018 305 List of highest rated series on cable television Edit The following dramas air on a cable channel pay TV which normally has a relatively smaller audience compared to free to air TV public broadcasters KBS SBS MBC and EBS By household rating Edit Top 50 series per nationwide household rating Series Network Nationwide household rating Nielsen Final episode date Ref1 The World of the Married JTBC 28 371 16 May 2020 306 2 Sky Castle 23 779 1 February 2019 307 3 Crash Landing on You tvN 21 683 16 February 2020 308 4 Reply 1988 18 803 16 January 2016 309 310 5 Guardian The Lonely and Great God 18 680 21 January 2017 311 6 Mr Sunshine 18 129 30 September 2018 312 7 Mr Queen 17 371 14 February 2021 313 8 Love ft Marriage and Divorce 2 TV Chosun 16 582 8 August 2021 314 9 Itaewon Class JTBC 16 548 21 March 2020 315 10 Vincenzo tvN 14 636 2 May 2021 316 11 100 Days My Prince 14 412 30 October 2018 317 12 Hospital Playlist 14 142 28 May 2020 318 13 Hospital Playlist 2 14 080 16 September 2021 319 14 Hometown Cha Cha Cha 12 665 17 October 2021 320 15 Signal 12 544 12 March 2016 321 16 The Lady in Dignity JTBC 12 065 19 August 2017 322 323 17 Hotel del Luna tvN 12 001 1 September 2019 324 18 Reply 1994 11 509 28 December 2013 325 19 Prison Playbook 11 195 18 January 2018 326 20 The Uncanny Counter OCN 10 999 24 January 2021 327 21 The Crowned Clown tvN 10 851 4 March 2019 328 22 My Kids Give Me a Headache JTBC 10 715 17 March 2013 329 330 23 Jirisan tvN 10 663 ongoing 331 24 Mine 10 512 27 June 2021 332 25 Encounter 10 329 24 January 2019 333 26 Memories of the Alhambra 10 025 20 January 2019 334 27 Another Miss Oh 9 991 28 June 2016 335 28 Bossam Steal the Fate MBN 9 759 4 July 2021 336 29 The Light in Your Eyes JTBC 9 731 19 March 2019 337 30 Strong Girl Bong soon 9 668 15 April 2017 338 31 Love ft Marriage and Divorce TV Chosun 9 656 14 March 2021 339 32 Stranger 2 tvN 9 408 4 October 2020 340 33 Lawless Lawyer 8 937 1 July 2018 341 34 Record of Youth 8 740 27 October 2020 342 35 What s Wrong with Secretary Kim 8 665 26 July 2018 343 36 Graceful Family MBN 8 478 17 October 2019 344 345 37 Misty JTBC 8 452 24 March 2018 346 38 Misaeng Incomplete Life tvN 8 240 20 December 2014 347 39 Familiar Wife 8 210 20 September 2018 348 40 Lie After Lie Channel A 8 203 24 October 2020 349 41 Dear My Friends tvN 8 087 2 July 2016 350 42 The Devil Judge 7 960 22 August 2021 351 43 Live 7 730 6 May 2018 352 44 Arthdal Chronicles 7 705 22 September 2019 353 45 The Good Detective JTBC 7 609 25 August 2020 354 46 My Mister tvN 7 352 17 May 2018 355 47 It s Okay to Not Be Okay 7 348 9 August 2020 356 48 Oh My Ghost 7 337 22 August 2015 357 49 Something in the Rain JTBC 7 281 19 May 2018 358 50 Second 20s tvN 7 233 17 October 2015 359 By viewers Edit Top 50 series per nationwide viewers million since 2018 note 2 Series Network Nationwide viewers number in million Nielsen Final episode date Ref1 Sky Castle JTBC 6 508 1 February 2019 360 2 Crash Landing on You tvN 6 337 16 February 2020 361 3 The World of the Married JTBC 6 248 16 May 2020 362 4 Mr Queen tvN 4 749 14 February 2021 363 5 Mr Sunshine 4 631 30 September 2018 364 6 Itaewon Class JTBC 4 425 21 March 2020 365 7 Hospital Playlist 2 tvN 3 853 16 September 2021 366 8 Vincenzo 3 841 2 May 2021 367 9 Hotel del Luna 3 674 1 September 2019 368 10 Hospital Playlist 3 579 28 May 2020 369 11 Love ft Marriage and Divorce 2 TV Chosun 3 344 8 August 2021 370 12 100 Days My Prince tvN 3 264 30 October 2018 371 13 The Uncanny Counter OCN 3 257 24 January 2021 372 14 Hometown Cha Cha Cha tvN 3 237 17 October 2021 373 15 Prison Playbook 3 063 18 January 2018 374 16 Memories of the Alhambra 2 853 20 January 2019 375 17 Jirisan 2 586 ongoing 376 18 Encounter 2 473 24 January 2019 377 19 The Crowned Clown 2 447 4 March 2019 378 20 Mine 2 429 27 June 2021 379 21 What s Wrong with Secretary Kim 2 383 26 July 2018 380 22 The Light in Your Eyes JTBC 2 223 19 March 2019 381 23 Stranger 2 tvN 2 186 4 October 2020 382 24 Arthdal Chronicles 2 120 22 September 2019 383 25 A Korean Odyssey 2 115 4 March 2018 384 Lawless Lawyer 1 July 2018 385 27 It s Okay to Not Be Okay 2 065 9 August 2020 386 28 Familiar Wife 2 039 20 September 2018 387 29 Record of Youth 1 999 27 October 2020 388 30 The Devil Judge 1 994 22 August 2021 389 31 Voice 2 OCN 1 957 16 September 2018 390 32 Bossam Steal the Fate MBN 1 940 4 July 2021 391 33 Hi Bye Mama tvN 1 915 19 April 2020 392 34 Love ft Marriage and Divorce TV Chosun 1 913 14 March 2021 393 35 Live tvN 1 823 6 May 2018 394 36 Misty JTBC 1 820 24 March 2018 395 37 Lie After Lie Channel A 1 784 24 October 2020 396 38 Life on Mars OCN 1 730 5 August 2018 397 39 The Cursed tvN 1 717 17 March 2020 398 40 Romance Is a Bonus Book 1 687 17 March 2019 399 41 Graceful Family MBN 1 685 17 October 2019 400 42 Something in the Rain JTBC 1 682 19 May 2018 401 43 Tale of the Nine Tailed tvN 1 657 3 December 2020 402 44 Gangnam Beauty JTBC 1 643 15 September 2018 403 45 The Good Detective 1 640 25 August 2020 404 46 Mouse tvN 1 637 19 May 2021 405 47 Watcher OCN 1 602 25 August 2019 406 48 My Mister tvN 1 600 17 May 2018 407 49 Sisyphus The Myth JTBC 1 577 8 April 2021 408 50 Voice 3 OCN 1 534 30 June 2019 409 See also Edit South Korea portal Television portal List of South Korean television series History of Korean animation Japanese television drama Manhwa Mass media in South Korea Taiwanese television drama Television in South Korea WebtoonFootnotes Edit As of 2010 it remained 38th in ranking 244 as of January 2013 it remained 41st in ranking 245 as of May 2015 it remained around 40th in ranking 246 as of June 2018 it remained 39th in ranking 247 a b The number of viewers was released by Nielsen Korea starting January 2018 References Edit What are you opinion korean drama or thai drama Storify a b c Chosun Ilbo 2007 Hong Jae hyun 5 October 2008 SBS 조강지처클럽 자체최고시청률 41 3 로 종영 in Korean Sports Donga Retrieved 22 October 2021 Park Se yeon 13 February 2009 아내의 유혹 40 6 자체 최고 시청률 기염 Newsen in Korean Archived from the 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com in Korean Naver Sports 세계일보 Retrieved 26 July 2020 온에어 스페셜 역대 방송가 드라마 승률 비교 이브의 모든 것 1위 in Korean E daily 2 April 2008 고재완 27 March 2012 40 해품달 로 본 역대 시청률 순위 50 는 불가능 Sports Chosun in Korean 스포츠 조선 February 9 2014 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말연속극 왕가네식구들 48 3 Citation Source 1 Citation Source 2 Citation Source 3 Citation Source 4 김태은 1 November 2007 드라마 배경 방송사는 되고 영화사는 안된다 StarNews in Korean 스타뉴스 March 3 2013 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말연속극 내딸서영이 47 6 장밋빛인생 47 장밋빛 질주 계속된다 Rose Life 47 Rose Sprint continues 스타뉴스 in Korean 다음 뉴스 편집부 Monet Today Star News 13 October 2005 Retrieved 16 June 2020 박준범 10 March 2007 흥행 보증수표 는 없어도 시청률 보증수표 는 있다 OSEN in Korean September 9 2012 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말연속극 넝쿨째굴러온당신 45 3 July 26 2009 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st SBS 특별기획 찬란한유산 45 2 March 11 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말드라마 황금빛내인생 45 1 July 2 2006 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st SBS 주말극장 하늘이시여 44 9 March 10 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말드라마 하나뿐인내편 9 246 February 4 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말드라마 황금빛내인생 8 366 September 6 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말드라마 한번다녀왔습니다 6 893 September 9 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말드라마 같이살래요 6 669 September 22 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말드라마 세상에서제일예쁜내딸 6 247 January 31 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말드라마 오삼광빌라 6 145 September 12 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말드라마 오케이광자매 5 823 March 8 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말드라마 사랑은뷰티풀인생은원더풀 5 693 March 27 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st SBS 금토드라마 WARINLIFE펜트하우스2 5 601 January 5 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st SBS 월화드라마 WARINLIFE펜트하우스 5 354 October 24 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 주말드라마 신사와아가씨 5 324 February 25 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st SBS 월화드라마 낭만닥터김사부2 5 210 November 21 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 수목드라마 동백꽃필무렵 4 491 April 20 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st SBS 금토드라마 열혈사제 4 325 February 3 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 2nd MBC 주말특별기획 돈꽃 4 085 March 19 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS1 일일연속극 꽃길만걸어요 3 950 February 14 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st SBS 금토드라마 스토브리그 3 921 October 1 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS1 일일연속극 여름아부탁해 3 897 August 24 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS1 일일드라마 기막힌유산 3 852 June 4 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st SBS 금요드라마 WARINLIFE펜트하우스3 3 778 March 14 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 수목드라마 왜그래풍상씨 3 692 March 1 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS1 일일드라마 누가뭐래도 3 599 February 10 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 일일드라마 비밀의남자 3 502 January 1 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st 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수목드라마 닥터프리즈너 2 832 February 7 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st SBS 드라마스페셜 리턴 2 817 April 16 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 일일드라마 미스몬테크리스토 2 808 October 4 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 2nd KBS1 저녁일일극 국가대표와이프 2 799 April 11 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 3rd SBS 금토드라마 하이에나 2 789 October 2 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 일일드라마 태양의계절 2 754 December 24 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st SBS 월화드라마 VIP 2 688 February 17 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 5th MBC 주말드라마 내사랑치유기 2 660 May 22 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st KBS2 일일드라마 인형의집 2 613 August 28 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 3rd KBS2 일일드라마 위험한약속 2 604 February 8 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 2nd KBS2 수목드라마 흑기사 2 492 April 9 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 2nd KBS2 일일드라마 왼손잡이아내 2 488 November 23 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 3rd SBS 금토드라마 배가본드 2 472 April 18 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 3rd SBS 금토드라마 더킹영원의군주 2 453 December 28 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 2nd KBS2 일일드라마 끝까지사랑 2 445 May 16 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st JTBC 금토드라마 부부의세계 28 371 February 1 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st JTBC 금토드라마 SKY캐슬 23 779 February 16 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 토일드라마 사랑의불시착 lt 본 gt 21 683 Reply 1988 Writes Cable Television History Stoo Asaie January 16 2016 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 응답하라1988 lt 본 gt 18 803 January 21 2017 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 쓸쓸하고찬란하신도깨비 lt 본 gt 18 680 September 30 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 미스터션샤인 lt 본 gt 18 129 February 14 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 토일드라마 철인왕후조선중전영혼가출스캔들 lt 본 gt 17 371 August 8 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st TV CHOSUN 주말미니시리즈 결혼작사이혼작곡2 16 582 February 29 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st JTBC 금토드라마 이태원클라쓰 16 548 May 2 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 토일드라마 빈센조 lt 본 gt 14 636 October 30 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 월화드라마 백일의낭군님 lt 본 gt 14 412 May 28 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 슬기로운의사생활 lt 본 gt 14 142 September 16 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 슬기로운의사생활2 lt 본 gt 14 080 October 17 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 토일드라마 갯마을차차차 lt 본 gt 12 665 March 12 2016 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 시그널 lt 본 gt 12 544 종영 품위녀 12 1 로 자체 최고 기록 무서운 뒷심 Star News in Korean August 19 2017 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st JTBC 금토드라마 품위있는그녀 12 065 September 1 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 토일드라마 호텔델루나 lt 본 gt 12 001 December 28 2013 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 응답하라1994 11 509 January 18 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 수목드라마 슬기로운감빵생활 lt 본 gt 11 195 January 24 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 2nd OCN 경이로운소문 lt 본 gt 10 999 March 4 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 월화드라마 왕이된남자 lt 본 gt 10 851 Kim Tong hyung 25 February 2013 Childless Comfort looks like TV game changer The Korea Times Retrieved 4 March 2013 February 24 2013 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st JTBC JTBC특별기획드라마 무자식상팔자 10 715 October 24 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 특별기획지리산 lt 본 gt 10 663 June 27 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 마인 lt 본 gt 10 512 November 29 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 수목드라마 남자친구 lt 본 gt 10 329 January 13 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 토일드라마 알함브라궁전의추억 lt 본 gt 10 025 June 28 2016 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 월화드라마 또오해영 lt 본 gt 9 991 July 4 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st MBN 종편특별기획드라마 보쌈운명을훔치다 9 759 March 19 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st JTBC 월화드라마 눈이부시게 9 731 March 25 2017 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st JTBC 금토드라마 힘쎈여자도봉순 9 668 February 14 2021 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st TV CHOSUN 주말미니시리즈 결혼작사이혼작곡 9 656 October 4 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 토일드라마 비밀의숲2 lt 본 gt 9 408 July 1 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 무법변호사 lt 본 gt 8 937 October 27 2020 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 월화드라마 청춘기록 lt 본 gt 8 740 July 11 2018 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st tvN 수목드라마 김비서가왜그럴까 lt 본 gt 8 665 October 17 2019 Nationwide Cable Ratings Nielsen Korea 1st MBN 우아한가 8 478 황소영 18 October 2019 종영 우아한가 MBN 역대 최고 최고 최고 일간스포츠 in Korean Retrieved 10 June 2020 a, wikipedia, wiki, book,

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