Crash Landing On You
Descendants of the Sun
The Moon Embracing the Sun
Mr. Queen

Sandra’s K-Drama Recommendations

In November, 2020 a young friend recommended the K-drama Crash Landing on You as a way to entertain myself during the Covid lockdown. I didn’t know what to expect as the storyline—South Korean CEO/heiress paraglides into North Korea by mistake—seemed so implausible. One Google search later, I discovered it was an international sensation. I began watching and was immediately enchanted and fascinated. K-dramas mix romance, action, comedy, and fantasy in ways that are quite different from the way films are made in the West (which are more “monotone” – single genre). K-dramas offer a window into family life, corporate culture, political machinations, and values and beliefs, and address issues of social status and corruption due to power and resource/money imbalances. Food features largely. All include villains who threaten the protagonists – even in rom-coms. My recommendations are below; several are on Netflix, most are on – the Rakuten Asia streaming service. All are in Korean with English subtitles.

K-Dramas that mix action (the eternal fight of good vs. evil) with some romance:


Vincenzo: Netflix

Descendants of the Sun


Lawless Lawyer:

You’re All Surrounded:

Joseon era (Korea’s imperial age – historical/costume dramas)

Moon Embracing the Sun

Mr. Queen

Haechi (wonderful depiction of a leader who learns how to contend w/ politics)

K-Dramas: straight up romance

Unattainable male eventually falls for accomplished, often plucky female. Frequently involve a love triangle in which two males compete for the same female.


Crash Landing on You: Netflix

It’s OK to Not Be OK: Netflix

What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim?

Guardian: The Lonely and Great God:

My Love from the Star:

While You Were Sleeping:


Secret Garden:

The Legend of the Blue Sea:

Joseon era

The Tale of Nokdu:

Love in the Moonlight:


Teenage rom-com

K-Dramas do a wonderful job with stories set in high school (really)

True Beauty:

Boys Over Flowers: