I have been planning for a couple of months now, to write a post about the “Reasons why I love K-Dramas”. For some time, I thought no one has given enough focus on why it is addicting, or why korean entertainment attained a great success worldwide. To my surprise, however, there are already a lot of articles and posts. These were just published two or three years ago. And apparently, I haven’t check those articles and posts coz I have no interest during those years.
Anyway, I decided that I will make these as my sources. And in fact, I already listed my reasons before I have read their articles. It just happened that they thought first what I just thought. That’s the essence of research, isn’t it? (But as of now these links or quotes will not be available. This post will be updated gradually.)
And just like other fans, I will compare these Korean dramas to our local dramas.
1. Simple Plots and Few Characters
Most Korean Dramas have their stories and episodes well-planned before they start shooting. Too lengthen the episodes, I believe, rarely happens. Since there are also a few characters, viewers can easily go with the flow of the story.
Unlike our local shows, there are many subplots, and when it happens, a new character comes or a character dies/disappears. The story becomes complicated and sometimes too draggy, that most of the times it lasts for a year.
When Mexican soap operas were still popular in the Philippines, local drama shows lasts for more than two years. I can’t remember how long Mara Clara was, but it lasted I guess for more than five years. Whew!!! Also, local drama shows then involved a whole community of characters. LOL. A guessing game once you will missed a month of episodes.
So when Korean Dramas (we call it koreanovelas) are aired in the Philippines, and become a hit, local shows started shortening their air time.
Actually not all Korean Dramas have excellent stories, but it is still proper to say that most of these are well-written, and they have captured the interests of the young and the old audience.
2. Good Looking (and Fashionable) Korean Stars
Next to a good story is asking “Who are the stars of that show?” To see handsome and beautiful celebrities make me eager to watch the story more. I want to see them everyday (if I watched it on our local TV)
I remember when Full House was a big hit in the Philippines, I dreamt of wearing the skirts of Song Hye Kyo, and had my hair as hers. Oh, especially in Princess Hours… I wish I can wear Yoon Eun Hye’s clothes. LOL
I’m not really a fashionista, but at least I noticed that shops here are selling Korean Fashion Clothes, and I’ve seen some Filipinas wearing them.
3. Putting values on relationships, such as family relationship, friendship, and romantic relationships (to be updated still)
Korean Dramas don’t show so much intensified emotions or events like a character being raped, physically abused by relatives, went crazy because she got poor…Kidnapping, Setting a house on fire, or Blasting cars. Most of the stories are focused on human relationships, how to deal with other people well. Most of the viewers can easily relate once a conflict arises. Viewers empathize with the characters in Korean Dramas, however simple their lives are.
4. Better Production Values (to be updated still)
Great Shots (Sceneries / Camera Angles)
I really like how the angles are taken in most Korean series I already watched like in Princess Hours and Winter Sonata—really great cinematography. Most of the time, natural frames were used in the scenes in Goong….making the scene more artistic. I also like the cinematography of Temptation of Wolves, The Classic, Sad Movie, and Lover’s Concerto. Oh, how I love the opening credits of Temptation of Wolves.
South Korean cinema has remained a “full service cinema”.
Hmmm… I can’t explain this but I just agree to the article I have read about it. I believe, that is what lacking in our local cinema. Filipino entertainment, however, is trying to catch up little by little. I hope a film school will be put up in the Philippines, in the near future, like in South Korea. A school just focused on improving the value of entertainment industry in the Philippines. I just miss the times I hear from the news that Filipino movies and shows got International Awards.
5. Collectible Soundtracks
Really cool, enchanting, enjoyable to hear. One of the reasons I got hooked in watching Korean dramas / movies are the background music of the scenes. Although we can’t understand the lyrics, music has no language barrier… it touches our hearts. I like the soundtracks from Goong, IRRLY, WSAYF, The Classic, Sad Movie, Full House, Dalja’s Spring, among others.
6. Learning Korean Culture (to be updated still)
Bowing their heads when they greet someone, respecting the elders, eating kimchi, the piggy back carry, singing in Noraebang or the Karaoke house, drinking Maekju when got problems, having their weddings in Modern and traditional way…
These are the most obvious things you’ll observe once you watch Korean dramas, and learning a different culture from yours is very interesting indeed.
Disclaimer: I don’t hate all our local drama series. In fact, I salute most of our Filipino Stars because they really can act well especially the antagonists of the shows. But it is just boring to watch shows with same themes over and over again. Themes like corruption, vengeance, stories involving gunmen, and other acts of violence. Is that the typical life of an ordinary Filipino? Well…
I’m actually glad that most local shows now are adapting the stories in Komiks, though these are still complicated stories. At least, Filipino Entertainment is making a distinction among Asian Dramas. (Filipinos are really good in hard-hitting dramas.)
After watching Korea’s Sad Movie, however, I realized that there are simple experiences in our lives worthy to be seen in TV or in Movie screens. And Wonderful Life, though the story is about a child with a leukemia, the flow of the story was inspiring and light. It hits your heart slowly.