The K-Wave continues for Netflix as the streaming giant announces its biggest annual slate of South Korean content.
On January 19, Netflix announced 25 original films and movies made in South Korea, its biggest line-up ever. The streaming platform has invested over $1 billion in generating Korean-language shows since 2016, and the success of shows like Squid Game and Hellbound has ensured that the investment only goes up.
In 2021, Netflix was awarded the Korea Image Stepping Stone Bridge award for bridging the gap between Korea and the world, after having invested 550 billion won in 2021.
Don Kang, vice-president of content for Netflix Korea, recently announced,
“Last year, Netflix saw huge success, thanks to the popularity of content like Squid Game, My Name and Hellbound. We are currently working on producing the webtoon-based zombie series All of Us Are Dead, which will be released later this month. On top of that, we will showcase some movies – in which we took part in the production – as well as more entertainment shows that go beyond existing genres and formats.”
Here is a list of Korean dramas that Netflix is offering in 2022
1) All of Us Are Dead
- Directed by: Lee JQ, Kim Nam-su
- Release date: January 28, 2022
- Starring: Yoon Chan-yeong, Park Ji-hu, Cho Yi-hyun, Lomon, Yoo In-soo, Lee You-mi, Lim Jae-hyeo
It’s the season of the walking dead for Netflix, starting with the eagerly awaited All of Us Are Dead. Based on the webtoon named Now at our School by Joo Dong-geun, this gory drama promises to be the next big winner.
All Of Us Are Dead builds around a young crop of students confined to a school during a zombie infection spread. The situation will test their friendship and integrity as each one tries their best to come out alive.
The series features a number of rising stars including Yoon Chan-yeong, Park Ji-hu, Cho Yi-hyun, Lomon, Yoo In-soo, Lee You-mi and Lim Jae-hyeok.
2) Twenty Five, Twenty One
- Directed by: Jung Ji-hyun
- Release date: February 12, 2022
- Starring: Kim Tae-ri, Nam Joo-hyuk, Kim Ji-yeon, Choi Hyun-wook, Lee Ju-myung
This coming of age drama revolves around the love story of Na Hee-do (Kim Tae-ri) and Baek Yi-jin (Nam Joo-hyuk). Na Hee-do is an aspiring fencer on the national fencing team. She struggles in high school due to her team disbanding while also being affected by the IMF crisis.
She crosses paths with Baek Yi-jin, the eldest son of another family affected by the IMF crisis. The duo cross paths at the age of eighteen and twenty-two, while their romance hits off when they are twenty-five and twenty-one.
3) Forecasting Love and Weather
- Directed by: Cha Young-hoon
- Release date: February 12, 2022
- Starring: Park Min-young, Song Kang, Yoon Bak, Yura
Park Min-young makes her comeback in this romantic comedy, opposite Netflix regular and Nevertheless star Song Kang. Forecasting Love and Weather revolves around the lives and loves of the office workers at Korea Meteorological Administration.
Park Min-young plays Jin Ha-kyung, an intelligent and highly efficient, albeit icy, individual, who is a stickler for the rules. While her personality might make her the ultimate outsider, Jun Ha-yung’s life takes a 180 degree turn when she meets newcomer Lee Si-woo, played by Song Kang’s character.
The lead pair’s fiery chemistry has ensured that Forecasting Love and Weather is one of the most anticipated romantic comedies of 2022.
4) Money Heist: Korea – Joint Economic Area
- Directed by: Kim Hong-sun
- Starring: Yoo Ji-tae, Kim Yunjin, Park Hae-soo, Jun Jong-seo, Lee Won-jong, Park Myung-hoon, Kim Seung-o, Kim Ji-hun, Jang Yoon-ju, Lee Joobeen, Lee Hyun-woo, Kim Ji-hoon,Lee Kyu-ho
An adaptation of the incredibly successful Spanish Netflix drama, Money Heist: Korea – Joint Economic Area aka House of Paper, is one of the most eagerly awaited Netflix dramas of 2022.
The show, much like the original, narrates the story of a genius strategist called the Professor and his talented crew – composed of top-class thieves – attempting to pull off an unprecedented heist in the Korean Peninsula.
The adaptation boasts a star studded cast, which includes Yoo Ji-tae playing the Professor and Park Hae-soo taking on the mantle of the deliciously evil Berlin.
5) Black Knight
- Directed by: Cho Ui-seok
- Starring: Kim Woo-bin, Esom, Kang You-seok
This upcoming Netflix drama is a comeback project from Uncontrollably Fond’s Kim Woo-bin.
Based on a popular webtoon, Black Knight is set on an Earth too polluted to breathe in. Only one percent of the human race has survived, and strict social stratification has emerged.
Within this system, delivery drivers play a critical role, and for many refugees, becoming a delivery driver is their only hope of survival. In the midst of this chaos, Black Knight tells the story of Sawol, a refugee who aspires to follow in the footsteps of a legendary delivery driver 5-8, played by Kim Woo-bin, who is best known for his exceptional battle skills.
6) Thirty Nine
- Directed by: Kim Sang-ho
- Release date: February 16, 2022
- Starring: Son Ye-jin, Jeon Mi-do, Kim Ji-hyun
A celebration of female friendship, Thirty Nine is a slice of life drama that follows the love and life of three friends who are about to turn forty. Brought together by coincidence in their high school years, Cha Mi-jo (played by Son Ye-jin), Jeong Chan-young (played by Jeon Mi-do) and Jang Joo-hee (played by Kim Ji-hyun) are close friends who have been through both the good and the worst times together.
Mi-jo now works as a dermatologist, Chan-young plies her trade as an acting coach and Joo-hee is a cosmetics sales manager. In the 39th year, life takes a drastic turn.
The Netflix drama’s star studded cast promises this K-drama is one to watch to out for.
7) The Sound of Magic
- Directed by: Kim Sung-youn
- Starring: Ji Chang-wook, Choi Sung-eun, Hwang In-youp
The Sound of Magic is based on the popular webtoon Annarasumanara. Directed by Itaewon Class maker Kim Sung-yoon, the show is about Yoon Ah-yi, a girl who had to grow up too quickly, and Rieul, a mysterious magician who, despite his age, wishes to remain a child.
Ji Chang-wook takes on the role of Rieul, a mysterious magician who lives in an abandoned amusement park, and Yoon Ah-yi is played by Choi Sung-eun. Yoon Ah-yi’s classmate Na Il-deung is played by none other than True Beauty heartthrob, Hwang In-youp.
8) The Accidental Narco
- Directed by: Yoon Jong-bin
- Starring: Ha Jung-woo, Hwang Jung-min, Park Hae-soo, Jo Woo-jin, Yoo Yeon-seok, Chang Chen
The Accidental Narco is based on true events and follows an ordinary entrepreneur who has no choice but to risk his life by joining a government-led secret mission to apprehend a Korean drug lord. This Netflix original marks director Yoon Jong-bin’s first foray into drama and his first collaboration with Netflix.
The thriller boasts a star studded cast including Ha Jung-woo, Hwang Jung-min, Park Hae-soo, Jo Woo-jin and Yoo Yeon-seok.
- Directed by: Roh Deok
- Starring: Jeon Yeo-been, NANA
Glitch follows the story of Hong Ji-hyo, who enlists the help of a community of UFO watchers to track down her missing boyfriend. In the process, Ji-hyo comes face to face with a mysterious secret.
Starring Vincenzo’s Jeon Yeo-been, the mystery series promises to be a thrilling ride. The show has been written by the writer of Netflix’s Extracurricular.
10) A Model Family
- Directed by: Kim Jin-woo
- Starring: Jung Woo, Park Hee-soon, Yoon Jin-seo, Park Ji-yeon
A Model Family tells the story of a man on the verge of bankruptcy and divorce who comes across a car full of cash. In the course of the incident, he runs into the second-in-command of a drug cartel.
Jung Woo, Park Hee-soon, Yoon Jin-seo, and Park Ji-yeon star in this suspenseful tale about an ordinary family on the verge of falling apart, who get a second wind after a chance discovery of drug money.