12 K-Dramas That Prove Happily Ever After Does Exist
Who doesn’t love a happy ending? At KrakGist, we definitely love our K-dramas and the variety of satisfying conclusions they give but we ultimately live for the ones that prove that happily ever after does exist! Because, really, who doesn’t?
There are so many satisfying happy endings in K-drama land so we’ve broken this story into two parts, this being Part 1. In this, we list 12 of some of our favorite titles that are surefire happy pills to binge watch and escape into!
Fight For My Way (2017)
Starring two of our faves, Park Seo-Joon and Kim Ji-won, with Ahn Jae-hong and Song Ha-Yoon, Fight For My Way is a must-watch for its realistic plot, storytelling, and good vibes! The drama is ultimately a story about underdogs with big dreams struggling to survive and striving for success and is also a story of friendship and perseverance.
It tells the tale of Ko Dong-Man (Park Seo-joon) and Choi Ae-Ra (Kim Ji-won), who both have childhood dreams that didn’t materialize quite as they had hoped they would. The longtime friendship between the two blossoms into romance, whose childish (but very cute!) dynamic hasn’t changed despite reaching adulthood.
Strong Girl Bong-Soon (2017)
Here’s a series that will make you shout: “You go, girl!” Starring Park Bo-young in the title role as a woman with superhuman strength, with Park Hyung-Sik and Ji Soo, Strong Girl Bong-Soon tells the story of Do Bong-soon who inherited her strength from the women in her family and harbors dreams of creating a video game with herself as the main character.
Bong-Soon desperately wants to become a delicate and elegant woman, which is the ideal type of her crush, In Guk-doo (Ji Soo), a police officer. Thanks to her strength, she gets a job as a bodyguard to rich heir Ahn Min-hyuk (Park Hyung-Sik), the CEO of a gaming company, Ainsoft. With help and training from Min-hyuk, Bong-Soon manages to control her strength to use it for good causes. Something else blossoms from this time spent together, as Min-hyuk and Bong-soon find their relationship growing into something more, as well!
W: Two Worlds Apart (2016)
Starring Lee Jong-suk and Han Hyo-Joo, this thrilling fantasy romance drama centers on the clash between “two worlds”: the real world and an alternate universe inside a webtoon, from which the title of the television series was taken.
Kang Chul (Lee Jong-suk) is a handsome and intelligent boy who is also skilled in shooting. He becomes famous in South Korea as he won a shooting competition during the 2004 Athens Olympics. But this fame is interrupted when the unknown murderer massacres his family, and he is erroneously accused of the crime. Flash forward to ten years later, Kang Chul is a multimillionaire who starts “Project W” in an effort to catch the real culprit behind his family’s death; part of the project is his television broadcasting company dubbed “W,” after the initials of the interrogatives “who” and “why”. In his search for the real culprit, he gets in harm’s way and is saved by Oh Yeon-Joo (Han Hyo Joo), and they (you guessed it) end up falling in love!
Descendants of the Sun (2016)
Who hasn’t seen (and cried happy tears to) Descendants of the Sun? Starring Song Joong-ki, Song Hye-Kyo, Jin Goo, and Kim Ji-won, the melodrama is filled to the brim with action and romance—a perfect combination!
The drama sees Song Joong-ki portray the role of Captain Yoo Si-jin (Lucas Yoo) and Song Hye Kyo as Dr. Kang Mo-yeon (Maxine Kang) who end up falling for each other while providing aid in a country dealing with a natural disaster and civil strife.
Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo (2016)
The coming-of-age sports drama, inspired by the life of Olympic gold-medalist Jang Mi-ran, tells the story of Kim Bok joo (Lee Sung-Kyung), a young woman chasing her dream of weightlifting on an athlete college campus. She develops a crush on her friend Jung Joon-Hyung’s (Nam Joo-Hyuk) older brother, Jung Jae-Yi (Lee Jae-Yoon).
Joon Hyung teases her and helps her at first, but soon finds himself falling for her. The series also takes a dive into the individual stories of a group of college athletes who are fighting for their dreams, experiencing and finding love in the process, and growing every step of the way.
The Greatest Love (2011)
Starring Cha Seung-won, Gong Hyo-jin, Yoon Kye-sang, and Yoo In-na, The Greatest Love is about finding real love in the fake world of entertainment. We meet Gu Ae-jung (Gong Hyo-jin) who was the most popular member of girl group called Kukbo Sonyeo, which literally means “National Treasure Girls,” but fell from grace after becoming embroiled in scandals.
We also encounter Dokko Jin (Cha Seung-won), the most beloved star in the nation, topping all kinds of popularity polls and appearing in many commercials. We later find out that he has several character flaws. Ae-jung discovers a secret about Jin by chance and reveals it on a talk show, incurring his fury. However, their relationship unfolds in an unexpected way as Jin falls for Ae-jung and tries to win her heart.
Hyde Jekyll, Me (2015)
Based on Lee Choong-ho’s ‘Dr. Jekyll Is Mr. Hyde’, a popular webtoon which gave a romantic comedy spin on the literary character, the drama stars Hyun Bin and Han Ji-min. We meet Gu Seo-jin (Hyun Bin), a third-generation chaebol who runs the theme park Wonder Land. He seemingly has everything—looks, brains, and fortune—but we soon find out he has has dissociative identity disorder.
Whenever Seo-jin’s heart rate exceeds 150, another personality emerges—one that is very unlike Seo-jin’s usual cold, cynical and ruthless self, named Robin. He encounters Jang Ha-na (Han Ji-min) and the lives of the two become entangled as she says she has found a cure for his ailment… then gets kidnapped before she can give it to him. Ultimately, Ha-na falls more and more for him as she sees more of Robin appear and the rest is history!
This thrilling action romance drama tells the story of a three people whose lives intertwine when a decades-old incident involving a group of five friends who ran an illegal pro-democracy broadcasting station during the Fifth Republic in South Korea pops up. We meet an illegal “night courier” with the codename “Healer” (Ji Chang-wook) who possesses top-notch fighting skills, a reporter from a second-rate tabloid news website (Park Min-young), and a famous journalist at a major broadcast station (Yoo Ji-tae).
While trying to uncover the truth from that 1992 incident and a series of present day murders, the three grow into honest reporters who try to blur the lines of conflict between truth and reality, even if that means fighting media honchos. Though “Healer” was initially sent out to put an end to reporter Young-shin’s life—he ends up falling for her.
It’s Okay To Not Be Okay (2020)
Written by Jo Yong and directed by Park Shin-woo, the recently concluded It’s Okay To Not Be Okay received a lot of buzz for its production and fascinating story. It stars Kim Soo-hyun as Moon Gang-tae and Seo Ye-ji as Ko Moon-young, and tells the story of a romance between a caretaker at a psychiatric ward and a successful children’s book author.
As the story progresses, we see them help each other to heal emotional wounds and childhood trauma. Ultimately, they prevail over their intertwining pasts, which had been haunting them, and find peace within and around themselves.
Legend of the Blue Sea (2016)
Inspired by a classic Joseon legend from Korea’s first collection of unofficial historical tales about a fisherman who captures and releases a mermaid, this drama tells the love story of a con-artist and a mermaid who travels across the ocean to find him. It stars Lee Min-ho as Heo Joon-jae/Kim Dam-ryeong and Jun Ji-hyun as Shim Cheong/Se-hwa.
Focusing on rebirth, fate, and unrequited love, their tale is juxtaposed with the parallel story of their Joseon era incarnations, the mermaid, Se-hwa and town head, Kim Dam-ryeong. As they are initially unable to stay together due to his arranged marriage and Se-hwa’s inability to turn her tail into legs, she had erased his memories and waited. The two finally met again and suffer a tragic fate together, beginning with the first omen that tie their reincarnations back together.
Itaewon Class (2020)
Another gem of a drama based on a webtoon, Itaewon Class was lauded for its unique (and very satisfying) revenge plot which saw Park Sae-ro-yi (Park Seo-joon) prevail over his life’s many obstacles through a little help from his friends, in particular, Kim Da-mi’s Jo Yi-seo.
Through all the trials he faces avenging his father by focusing on his own success as the owner of DanBam and then as the CEO of IC Group, we see him eventually realizing his own feelings for someone who had been rooting for him all along—Yi-Seo—and the two grow and mature into their own and fall into a relationship with one another.
My Love From The Star (2013)
Who else is still not over this fantasy romance drama? We aren’t! My Love From The Star is about an extraterrestrial alien, Do Min-joon (Kim Soo-hyun), who landed on Earth in the Joseon Dynasty and, 400 years later, falls in love with a top actress, Cheon Song-yi (Jun Ji-hyun), in the modern era.
In her past life, Cheon Song-yi was Yi-hwa, a young girl who loved Min-joon for his true self, an alien. Their lives once again intertwine as they meet all these centuries later, with Min-joon and Song-yi falling hard for each other after he saves her life at a wedding.