The following female leads all successfully win the viewers’ hearts, but unfortunately, none of them get a happy ending.
Most viewers like to believe that the female lead characters will eventually have happy endings regardless of the hardships they go through over the course of the series. However, that is probably what would happen in Korean dramas from the past, not 2021. Particularly, the following female leads of the series released this year all receive heart-wrenching endings. If anyone still thinks K-drama female protagonists always get favorable outcomes at the end, this list will change your mind.
Shim Su Ryeon & Oh Yoon Hee – The Penthouse: War in Life
Perhaps until this moment, the viewers of “The Penthouse: War in Life” still find it difficult to believe the “insane” final ending of the drama after 3 seasons. The “OTP” (One True Pairing) of many fans, Shim Su Ryeon (Lee Ji Ah) and Oh Yoon Hee (Eugene) both die and reunite in another world. If Oh Yoon Hee is dropped down a cliff by her biggest rival, Shim Su Ryeon gives up on life because she cannot get over the guilt of the pain she has caused for people around her.
Whatever the cause, according to most viewers of “Penthouse”, such endings are way too harsh for these two female characters because both their hearts are in the right place. If the audience knew in advance that writer Kim Soon Ok would let both Yoon Hee and Su Ryeon die like that, most of them would have given up on the drama from the very beginning.
Cheon Seo Jin – The Penthouse: War in Life
The outcome that the main female antagonist of “Penthouse”, Cheon Seo Jin (Kim So Yeon) receives is considered deserving. But the reason why she is included in this list is because the way she eventually dies in the drama still disappoints many viewers, who claim it is not “satisfying” enough.
Throughout 3 seasons of “Penthouse”, Cheon Seo Jin commits numerous misdeeds. Yet in the end, the person who gives her the ultimate punishment by ending her life is herself, not any of the victims who suffer from her evil actions.
Kim Myung Hee – Youth of May
Although the sad ending of “Youth of May” is predictable, it is still so heartbreaking that it makes viewers cry buckets of tears. The fact that the female lead Kim Myung Hee (Go Min Si) gets shot in the last episode is already a tragic ending, but it gets even more tearful when it takes years for her dead body to be found.
Additionally, the fact that Kim Myung Hee passes away at a very young age, with too many unachieved dreams and an unfinished, difficult but passionate, true love with the male lead makes the audience feel heartbroken and pity her even more.
Kang Sae Byeok – Squid Game
Another K-drama female lead this year who fails to survive until the end is Kang Sae Byeok (Jung Ho Yeon) from “Squid Game”, an extremely viral character all over the world. In fact, this young girl’s life never has a single moment of peace and happiness. She’s a North Korean defector who manages to escape to South Korea, yet what she has to go through in this new chapter of her life is not better compared to the time in her home country.
Many viewers can’t help but expect “Squid Game” to have a strong plot twist in the end to bring Kang Sae Byeok back to life. But unfortunately, this is “Squid Game” we’re talking about, not “Penthouse”, so it’s not easy to just kill than revive the characters. Kang Sae Byeok leaving this world for good without the chance to experience true happiness is one of the most upsetting parts of “Squid Game”.
Boo Hye Ryung – Love ft. Marriage and Divorce 2
Lee Ga Ryeong‘s character Boo Hye Ryung in “Love ft. Marriage and Divorce” may not be a good wife. However, this doesn’t mean her husband is allowed to have an extramarital affair behind her back. It enrages the viewers even more when her husband’s family tries to cover up for “the other woman” to deceive her and when they get exposed, they even put the blame on Boo Hye Ryung for behaving immaturely.
Finally, Boo Hye Ryung gets a divorce and starts a new chapter in her life. But based on what is revealed at the end of season 2, it seems that she is about to go through a series of unhappy events yet again. More dramatically, the person Boo Hye Ryung encounters is the woman who destroys her original happiness with her ex-husband.
Yumi – Yumi’s Cells
Yumi’s (Kim Go Eun) relationship with her boyfriend Gu Woong (Ahn Bo Hyun) takes a turn for the worse in the last episode of “Yumi’s Cells”. Yumi once again has to say goodbye to the love of her life and is devastated to see Woong walk away. Yumi’s love cell was in a coma for 3 years before she could wake up for Yumi to fall in love again. However, Yumi ends up in another heartbreak.
But the good news is “Yumi’s Cells” will be renewed for another season so Yumi will start dating again. In the original webtoon, Yumi‘s next boyfriend will sadly hurt her with a big mistake later on. Nevertheless, let’s just wait for the drama’s release to be sure. What if the writer decides to adjust the story to give Yumi a happy ending that she deserves in season 2?
There are only 2 months left until the end of 2021 and no K-drama viewers want any more female leads to suffer or… die. If this is a new trend among Korean screenwriters to make viewers feel sad and depressed, then this trend had better end this year. It’s time our heroines have their happy endings!