OKAY. I HAD to talk about this.
I’ve recently been watching an ongoing daily drama called: “A Man In A Veil” on Viki. I usually stay away from these because they run up to about 100 episodes and that’s way too much for my attention span. However, I’ve been enjoying it.
Is it crazy? Yes. Is it cliche? Yes. But is it enjoyable, yes, to a certain degree. I went over to the review section of the drama and noticed SO many people giving it a bad review. Their reasons? I found out people really don’t know the difference between the different types of dramas that air on TV in Korea. So, I said, why not write a blog about it and explain the difference? Here’s a little KDRAMA 101…let’s get started!
These dramas air Monday through Friday for many weeks. They are typically low budget, not very high quality. Filmed in bad lighting studios, where you can absolutely tell it’s NOT a real home, office, etc. They are 30 minutes long per episode and only one episode is released per day.
Daily Dramas are usually about family, revenge, betrayal and they tend to be a bit outrageous! For example, people WILL get into car accidents, MIRACLES WILL happen, characters WILL die, a lot of memory loss will happen, the evil character will get away with a lot of things. Basically, these dramas are the equivalent of Mexican telenovelas (if you know, you know hahaha) where the shows run for way too long, and the writers have to scramble to keep adding more problems to the plot to keep things interesting so you keep tuning in, day after day. So if you think they are crazy and outrageous, dramatic, then the drama is achieving its goal. That’s the point of daily dramas.
Now the cast of these dramas might surprise you, there are actually some really good actors and actresses in these dramas. There are usually some familiar faces too, actors who usually star in your favorite weekday TVN high quality dramas, they are sometimes filming various dramas at the same time, so you might see them in your cheap daily drama on one day, and on the weekend watch them play a completely different role in a high quality highly rated drama.
These dramas are meant to be entertaining for your everyday “What’s on TV?” needs. They don’t really have any substance to them, they are simply made to entertain you briefly. They can’t be compared to your favorite high quality A-list Kdrama, so let’s not compare them but rather embrace them for what they are.
These dramas air during the weekends, and are usually more family oriented. Why? Because weekends are when the family is home together, and what’s better than sitting down in the living room with the family to watch a Kdrama together? It all depends on the drama and their broadcast station but weekend dramas can range from 50 Episode dramas, to your typical 16 Episodes. These dramas achieve some of the largest ratings, but not necessarily because they are phenomenal but rather because more people have time to watch them. They are sweet, fun, and mostly happy dramas.
They can get a little cliche too, but not as bad as daily dramas. They usually feature A-list actors too.
The drama I am currently very much into Start-Up (Check out my review here!) is also a weekend drama. It’s only 16 episodes though, and at the later time slot for TVN. It’s also very family oriented, but given the 16 Episodes, it’s of much higher quality, and features a major A-List cast.
I like a good weekend drama, they are usually more easy and relaxing to watch, and also they air on the weekends, so you always have something good to look forward to! (Especially during this pandemic where there is literally nothing to do on the weekends – 11/04/20)
Last but not least! Weekday Dramas! I can guarantee, most of your favorite Kdramas have been weekday dramas. Usually released as follows: Monday/Tuesday, Wednesday/Thursday, Friday/Saturday. So you only get TWO episodes per week, and they are only 16-24 Episodes long. These dramas are usually at much later time slots, usually air at around 10pm and are perfect for the younger crowd. People in Korea usually get out of work pretty late, then go out for dinner and drinks, so these dramas are perfect for unwinding after a long day before going to sleep. Since they air later, they are also rated 15+, which honestly is just your typical PG-13 here in the States. They allow for more riskier topics and themes. Themes for these weekday dramas include: thriller, melodramas, rom/com, action, crime. KBS, MBC, SBS and TVN always release very high quality weekday dramas with tons of A-list actor/actress favorites.
I love weekday dramas, because they offer escape from the day to day work life. They are usually very intriguing and interesting so they keep your mind busy even after you finish the episodes. Who doesn’t love a good high quality drama?
At the end of the day, I think a true Kdrama addict, loves all types of dramas. I know I do. What about you? Which drama type is your favorite? Have you ever watched a daily drama? Did you love it, did you hate it? Let me know! Thanks for showing up to class, see you next time for another lesson on KDRAMA 101!