The first half of 2022 has been filled with K-drama projects that star the top Korean actors and actresses.
It has been a pretty great time to be a K-drama fan, seeing that big names have constantly appeared in recent works. For example, we have Son Ye Jin with “Thirty Nine”, Park Min Young with “Forecasting Love and Weather”, Kim Tae Ri with “Twenty Five Twenty One”, Lee Min Ho with “Pachinko”, and most recently, Ji Chang Wook with “The Sound of Magic”. So, below are how these works have performed with such stars in their cast list.
Lee Min Ho
After not having any new work for 2021, Lee Min Ho returned in a completely different image for the 2022 series “Pachinko”. While the series is exclusive to Apple TV+, it managed to achieve better reviews compared to Lee Min Ho’s previous work “The King: Eternal Monarch”, which ended up performing below expectations.
In “Pachinko”, Lee Min Ho transformed into Koh Han Su, the first love interest of the female lead. This character first appeared just as rich as Lee Min Ho’s previous character, but as the show went on, managed to show more complexities with his turbulent past and jaded personality.
Lee Min Ho’s 2022 return has truly proven the megastar as more than a one-trick pony, and is an evidence that challenges are no issue to the actor.
Son Ye Jin
“Thirty Nine” was the first K-drama of top actress Son Ye Jin for a while, following her 2019 series “Crash Landing On You”. Like all her other previous works, Son Ye Jin managed to deliver an outstanding acting performance, and delivered a perfectly friendly and kind, yet emotional and torn Cha Mi Jo.
Unfortunately, “Thirty Nine” was not as successful as expectations due to its somber atmosphere that contradicts initial posters. Certain details in the plot were also said to be controversial, leading to unremarkable viewerships and low discussion. However, there are still a large number of viewers who find the series their thing, and who were deeply impacted as the series ran its course.
Park Min Young
After her last appearance in the 2020 series “When The Weather Is Fine”, Park Min Young once again returned to office attire for her 2022 project “Forecasting Love And Weather”, where she starred alongside young actor Song Kang. Once again, Park Min Young played to her strengths with an office drama, but the series’ pretty bland plotline wasn’t enough to retain its audiences.
Regarding her role, Park Min Young easily transformed into the beautiful, independent, and fashionable head of the forecasting department. However, there was nothing too remarkable about this role, and it didn’t feel too much different from the actress’s previous characters in “What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim” and “Her Private Life.”
Kim Tae Ri
Since Kim Tae Ri’s last K-drama acting chops in the 2018 series “Mr. Sunshine”, the actress never disappoints. This time around, she participated in “Twenty Five, Twenty One”, a super well-received series that succeeded both critically and commercially, and is one of the best in 2022 so far.
In the series, Kim Tae Ri became 14 years younger, playing the high school freshman and professional fencer Na Hee Do. Despite being in her 30s, Tae Ri managed to look not a day older than 18, and her manners and acting also exuded youthfulness. It was thanks to this brilliant performance that Kim Tae Ri has later crowned the Best Leading Actress at the 2022 Baeksang Arts Awards – one of the most prestigious acting awards in Korea.
Kim Woo Bin
Kim Woo Bin has been absent since the 2016 series “Uncontrollably Fond” due to his cancer treatment. After 6 years, the actor finally returned as the quiet but extremely romantic captain Jung Joon of “Our Blues”. Despite his little screen time in the omnibus K-drama, Kim Woo Bin still managed to deliver spectacular chemistry with his co-star Han Ji Min.
Despite facing some controversies, “Our Blues” saw high viewership ratings and a lot of public discussion. Meanwhile, Kim Woo Bin only improved after his long hiatus, with convincing actions, gazes, and expressions. So far, “Our Blues” and Kim Woo Bin’s portrayal in the series are totally watch worthy.
Ji Chang Wook
Missing from the Korean small screen since the late 2020 web-drama “Lovestruck in the City”, Ji Chang Wook also made a grand return in the first half of 2022. This year in particular will be pretty hectic for Ji Chang Wook’s fans, seeing that alongside his recently released Netflix drama “The Sound of Magic”, there are already 2 more upcoming projects. Unfortunately, since “The Sound of Magic” is an Netflix original with a musical format, it wasn’t going viral like Chang Wook projects often do. However, the series still achieved some notable accomplishments and was most-watched in many nations.
Through “The Sound of Magic”, Ji Chang Wook also got the chance to boast his beautiful singing and dancing skills. His character shined throughout the series, and would be among the most iconic of the actor.
2022 is truly a year of success for K-dramas, with many big stars making their comebacks and hit series being released. Hopefully, the rest of the year will be filled with just as quality works.