These are the 2021 Korean dramas that failed to achieve high ratings but still receive compliments quality-wise.
Despite the impact of the pandemic, 2021 is still an exciting year for Korean TV with the release of many hit dramas. Besides the famous works that have achieved great success on both television and online streaming platforms, there are still many dramas that fail to grab the attention of viewers despite having stable quality.
1. L.U.C.A: The Beginning
The sci-fi series tells the story of Ji O (Kim Rae Won), who has special powers and does not remember his past. He is the target of a mysterious figure who holds the secrets he has been trying to discover all this time. Meanwhile, Goo Reum (Lee Da Hee) is a detective. Her parents disappeared when she was only a kid. Goo Reum tries to find out the truth behind the disappearance of her parents. When she meets Ji O, Goo Reum’s life takes a turn.
Starring a talented cast, but lacking those who are noticed by many viewers, together with a difficult topic that is not easy to exploit on screen, L.U.C.A could not achieve the expected success even though it is considered a decent work.
2. Sell Your Haunted House
Originally expected to be another hit drama of the ageless visual Jang Nara, Sell Your Haunted House’s ratings eventually failed to live up to the expectations. In the series, Jang Nara plays Hong Ji Ah, a beautiful licensed agent who runs Daebak real estate. Despite her nice look on the outside, Ji Ah is actually short-tempered and grumpy. She is also an exorcist, specializing in fighting off evil spirits in the real estate properties, in order to sell them.
3. Dark Hole
Produced by OCN – a station specializing in psychological drama series, Dark Hole deserves to be the most impressive sci-fi horror work of the year. However, the drama is not well known among the general public, which is understandable given the genre of OCN’s series.
Lee Hwa-Sun (Kim Ok-Vin) is a detective at the regional investigation unit of the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency. She receives a phone call from the person who murdered her husband. Lee Hwa-Sun then travels to Muji City. There, people inhale a mysterious dark smoke and turn into monsters. The residents in Muji City become terrified. Lee Hwa-Sun struggles to save people there and she also chases after her husband’s murderer.
Meanwhile, Yoo Tae-Han (Lee Joon-Hyuk) has lived in Muji City all of his life. He once worked as a detective, but he had to quit because of a case. He now works as a wrecker driver. He still has his strength of justice, while he is also easy going and often jokes around. Yoo Tae-Han now faces his city falling into chaos because of the dark smoke that causes people to turn into monsters. He joins Lee Hwa-Sun to save people in Muji City.
4. Hello, Me!
This romantic comedy tells the story of Ban Ha Ni (Choi Kang Hee), a 37-years-old and single woman. She holds a temporary position at work, which makes her nervous that she might get fired. She is generally servile and timid. Considering her current state, she does not want to be single. One day, 17-year-old Ban Ha-Ni (Lee Re) from the past comes to 37-year-old Ban Ha-Ni. 17-year-old Ban Ha-Ni is totally different from her older self. The younger Ban Ha-Ni is bright and optimistic.
This is a fairly easy-to-watch drama with an interesting subject, but it is not of interest to international audiences.
Undercover is a remake of the UK television series of the same name. This drama also marks the reunion of two actors, Ji Jin Hee and Kim Hyun Joo. Undercover tells the story of Han Jung-Hyun (Ji Jin-Hee), an agent of the NIS (National Intelligence Service). While he studied at the police university, he was selected by the NIS. He then worked on a top secret case and he met Choi Yeon-Soo (Kim Hyun-Joo). Using his alias, he fell in love with her and they eventually married. Meanwhile, Choi Yeon-Soo works as a civil-rights lawyer who seeks justice and the truth. She is nominated for the Chief of the Civil Servant Corruption Investigation Unit. Because of her nomination, her husband’s true identity becomes involved in an uncontrollable situation.