KDrama Bucket Listing: Trusting the Actor for your KDrama/Movie Binge Part 1

Here goes another spree watching suggestion perfect for when you are currently in an imaginary romance with your favorite Korean actor.

Jung Woo Sung

He rarely does linger in kdramaland and works incessantly in stringing movies in the past ten years. Jung Woo Sung oppa is your quintessential poster boy for your ideal action/drama star, but he did well in Romantic Melodramas as well.

FAMOUS WORKS: The Fox with Nine Tails, Born to Kill, Beat, City of the Rising Sun, Musa the Warrior, A Moment to Remember, Sad Movie, Daisy, The Good The Bad and the Strange, The Restless, Reign of Assassins, Athena the Movie, Cold Eyes, The Divine Move, Scarlet Innocence, Don’t Forget Me, Athena Goddess of War, Padam Padam

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Jun Ji Hyun

As the other half of the pairing that led me to kdramaland, Jun Ji Hyun secured a special place in my heart. I have been religiously watching her movies and her recent side trips in dramaland.  She has reinvented herself over the years. Watching her will educate you on the difference between a real actress’ portrayal versus a girl group idol turned actress role playing.

FAMOUS WORKS: Il Mare, My Sassy Girl, Windstruck, Daisy, The Thieves, You who came from another star, The Berlin File, Assassination, Legend of the Blue Sea

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So Ji Sub

I have been in a long running one-sided romance with him. Who won’t? His mesmerizing gaze and his countenance just disarms me and sends me to a world where only the two of us exist. *giggles In movies, he typically do action so when he made a comeback with the hit Master’s Sun in an engrossing and eccentric department store CEO role, I loved him even more.

FAMOUS WORKS: We Are Dating Now, What Happened in Bali, Sorry I Love You, Cain and Abel, Road Number One, Ghost, Master’s Sun, Oh My Venus

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Son Ye Jin

A chameleon actress, she can easily transition to any role given to her with her expressive gaze and almost perfect rendition of her roles.  Most of her movies were a hit for me as she can easily draw you to her characters.

FAMOUS WORKS:  Lover’s Concerto, The Classic, Crazy First Love, Summer Scent, A Moment to Remember, April Snow, Alone in Love, My Wife Got Married, Spotlight, White Night, Personal Taste, Spellbound, The Tower, Blood and Ties, Shark, The Pirates, The Truth Beneath, The Last Princess

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Jo In Sung

I first met him in The Classic but fell in love with him in What Happened in Bali. Jo In Sung oppa fits the leading man role especially in Romance genre because of his handsome features. He has also experimented on his roles to challenge himself and improve his acting.

FAMOUS WORKS: Piano, Shoot for the Star, What Happened in Bali, Spring Day, The Classic, Love of North and South, A Dirty carnival, A Frozen Flower, That Winter The Wind Blows, It’s Okay that’s Love, The King

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Han Hyo Joo

“Dong Yi” made me a fan of Han Hyo Joo since I was not that into her in her earlier dramas.  Since then she has successfully crossed the film scene with memorable pictures in the most recent years.

FAMOUS WORKS:  Spring Waltz, Iljimae, Shining Inheritance, Dong Yi, Postman to Heaven, W: Two Worlds, Adlib Night, Always, Love 911, Masquerade, Cold Eyes, Cest si Bon, Beauty Inside, Love Lies

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Kang Dong Won

Kang Dong Won oppa is more famous in the big screen.  His last stint in dramaland was “One Percent of Anything” which is a dear watch.  As a sought after movie actor, his collection includes box office and critically acclaimed films.  

FAMOUS WORKS:  One Percent of Anything, Magic, Too Beautiful Too Lie, Temptation of Wolves, Duelist, Maundy Thursday, Voice of Murderer, M, Jeon Woo Chi, Secret Reunion, Psychic, Camella Love for Sale, The X, Kundo Age of the Rampant, My Palpitating Life, The Priests, A Violent Prosecutor, Vanishing Time, Master

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Song Hye Gyo

A known kdrama royalty, we first loved her in the tearjerker Autumn Tale and loved her even more in Full House.  Her charming demeanor and stunning beauty transcends through time a decade and a half after and still going on.

FAMOUS WORKS:  Autumn Tale, All In, Hotelier, Shining Days, Full House, Crazy First Love, A Reason to Live, Hwang Jin Yi, The World that they Live in, That Winter the Wind Blows, The Grandmaster, The Queens, Descendants of the Sun

Yoo Ah In

I actually liked Yoo Ah In when he was just a second lead in Sungkyunkwan Scandal.  He has rich emotions when working on his roles without appearing exaggerated.  He initially got me with his kissable lips *chuckles, but he has clearly proven his passion for his craft as he progressed to a bankable actor of his generation.

FAMOUS WORKS:  Sungkyunkwan Scandal, Fashion King, Jang Ok Jung Live In Love, Secret Love Affair, Six Flying Dragons, Antique Bakery, Punch, Tough as Iron, Veteran, The Throne, Like for Likes

Park Bo Young

Acting wise, Park Bo Young is definitely the front-runner in the batch of actresses in her generation. Her knack on owning her roles has made her synonymous to the projects she starred in. Whether it may be young or zippy or heartbreaking, she always bring her A-game to her portrayals.

FAMOUS WORKS: Our School ET, Jungle Fish, Speedy Scandal, Don’t Click, A Werewolf Boy, Snow Queen, Hot Young Bloods, The Silenced, You Call it Passion, Collective Invention, Oh My Ghostess, Strong Woman Do Bong Soon

Cha Seung Won

The young generation might not find this ajussi hot, but his Dokko Jin and Jo Gook characters I keep dearly in my heart. You have to watch City Hall and realize how the wedding proposal there looks so surreal. He is known these days for his chajumma stint in variety show “Three Meals a Day Fishing Village” which is fun to watch if you like laid back cooking show set up.

FAMOUS WORKS: City Hall, Athena: Goddess of War, The Greatest Love, You’re All Surrounded, Hwajung, Blades of Blood, 71 Into the Fire, Athena the Movie, Man on High Heels

Gong Hyo Jin

Like a wine, Gong Hyo Jin keeps getting better and her drama choices hits home in me. She’s best served in rom-coms. She was able to establish impeccable chemistry with her lead men and her comic timing is also impressive.

FAMOUS WORKS: Sang Doo Let’s Go to School, Biscuit teacher and Star candy, Thank you, Pasta, The Greatest Love, Master’s Sun, It’s okay that’s love, The Producers, Jealousy Incarnate, Crush and Blush, Love Fiction, Missing Boomerang Family, Sisters on the Road

Song Seung Heon

I have a complicated relationship with Song Seung Heon oppa because I was not consistently drawn by him since his projects are kinda sporadic.  I sure lovw his classics so he deserves a spot on this list.

FAMOUS WORKS:  Happy Together, Calla, Autumn in my Heart, He Was Cool, Make it Big, Summer Scent, East of Eden, A Better Tomorrow, My Princess, Dr. Jin, Ghost in your arms again, When a Man Falls in Love, Obsessed, Wonderful Nightmare, Saimdang Light’s Diary

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Kim A Joong

She is that one actress who surprisingly made this list without me realizing it.  *chuckles  Her excellent choices on tackling roles given to her in varied colors made her roles memorable hence she is trusted with amazing offers.

FAMOUS WORKS:  200 Pounds Beauty, My PS Partner, The Accidental Couple, Sign, Steal My Heart, Punch, Wanted, The King

Eric Moon/Moon Jung Hyuk

This oppa I dearly love. He is quite lucky because the history of his works is quite successful. He has also picked interesting roles and made it his own. His previous three rom-coms were all love drama spectacle for me.

FAMOUS WORKS: Invincible Parachute Agent, Diary of June, Que Sera Sera, Strongest Chil Woo, Myungwol the Spy, Discovery of Love, Another Oh Hae Young

Lee Yeon Hee

Smartly traversing films and television dramas, Lee Yeon Hee has picked her acting challenges very well based on the positive outcome of her works.

FAMOUS WORKS:  A Millionaire’s First Love, M, One Fine Day, My Love, Hello Schoolgirl, East of Eden, Paradise Ranch, Phantom, Marriage Blue, My Way, Phantom, Miss Korea, Detective K, Hwajung

Kim Soo Hyun

I know it’s surprising but Kim Soo Hyun has not reached yet the oppa stage for me. As we all know the rule is anyone younger as long as he is cute and gives you the hear flutter, he is considered oppa. I enjoyed his recent dramas and movies, but I don’t swoon that much the way I do with my resident oppas. I’m still waiting for that one drama that will make my knees weak.

FAMOUS WORKS: Jungle Fish, Dream High, Giant, The Moon the Embraces the Sun, You Who Came from the Stars, Producer, The Thieves, Secretly Greatly, Real

Kim Ha Neul

As a veteran actress she has explored various genres on her decorated celebrity life.  What I like most about her is how she reinvents herself by taking risks on her acting choices than playing safe to roles she is comfortable with.

FAMOUS WORKS:  Secret, Ditto, My Tutor Friend, Piano, Stained Glass, Too Beautiful to Lie, Almost Love, Lovers of Six years, My GF is an Agent, On air, Blind, You’re my Pet, Road Number 1, A Gentleman’s Dignity, Don’t Forget Me, On the way to the Airport, Misbehavior

Lee Min Ho

His mother might have prayed a lot for his son’s success and we cannot disregard how he has been honing his craft through the years to prove that he is more than just a pretty face. From trendy to action dramas, we can’t help but be amazed at his charisma and dimples. *chuckles

FAMOUS WORKS: Boys Before Flowers, Personal Preference, City Hunter, Faith, The Heirs, Legend of the Blue Sea, Bounty Hunters, Gangnam Blues

Han Ji Min

Her charming demeanor helped a lot in landing her lingering roles and commercially successful projects. While she has an impeccable comedic timing, she is also good when tears are to be summoned from her arsenal.

FAMOUS WORKS: Capital Scandal, Yi San, Cain and Abel, Padam Padam, Rooftop Prince, Hyde Jekyll and Me, Detective K Secret of Virtuous Widow, The Plan Man, Salut d Amour, The Age of Shadows

Kim Sun Ah

She is famous as Kim Sam Soon from the kdrama classic “My Name is Kim Sam Soon”, but I loved her more in City Hall and her stint in Scent of a Woman inspired to make the most out of my life. She is best in portraying women empowering stories celebrating girl power and assuring that vulnerabilities are but normal. While she is not that consistent in hitting big kdrama hitters, she gave me three classics that I watch when I’m sad.

FAMOUS WORKS: My Name is Kim Sam Soon, City Hall, Scent of a Woman, I do I do, Masked Prosecutor, S Diary, She’s on Duty, Happy Ero Christmas, Pitch High, The Five

Joo Ji Hoon

I loved him as Crown Prince Lee Shin in Goong (Princess Hours). Since then, even when he had that scandal, I think he is one of the most expressive actors that can slay characters in romantic melodramas. His movie portfolio is a bit varied but he is known to make his portrayal poignant and neat.

FAMOUS WORKS: Goong, The Devil, Five Fingers, Medical Top Team, Mask, Antique Bakery, Naked Kitchen, I am a King, Marriage Blue, Love Suspects, Confession, The Treacherous

Don’t panic if you are looking for your favorite actor/actress, and it’s not here yet.  This is a two-part list so kindly bear with me until I publish the next part.  -jediprincess♥♥♥

oppa virus: the best kdrama lead men


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Oppa virus (n) – is a virtual addiction caught when someone fictional in kdramaland hits the hearts of a kdrama addict.  The affected woman will exhibit dreamy state after watching the episodes, grumpiness while waiting for the next episodes and craziness watching the cute and sweet scenes over and over again. 

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Because of the recent Yoo Si Jin syndrome, I have looked back on my favorite oppas in the past years.  I think they have also covered almost every dream guy character there is.  And as a known rule regardless if  the character is young… if he is handsome, we call him “oppa”.   *chuckles Let’s see if you remember them all and if I missed someone. ^_^ 

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Lee Young Jae/Rain in Full House – The top star who had an everyday bickering session with his lead girl.  He was so full of himself, but he sure knew how to nurse his girl when she was sick.  The cohabitation plot and the eventual romance was perky and engaging, and I’m sure legit kdrama addicts will agree.

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Jung Jae Min and Kang In Wook/Jo In Sung and So Ji Sub  in What Happened in Bali – This is my first serving of second-lead syndrome.  Who won’t be crossed between them?  Albeit the sad ending, I enjoyed the promising portrayals So Ji Sub and Jo In Sung oppa offered that I accepted the let’s-all-die-together closure without any objections.  *lol  Now that I’m looking back on old melodramas, I can’t help but compare how agonizing they did it back then without so much weep fest compared to how they do it these days.

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Kang Hyun Woo/Ji Sung in Save the last dance for me – Hyun woo’s story is now “the problematic chaebol prototype storyline mixed with series of unfortunate events before the love finally gets realized”.  He literally went through sickness  and defied fate and made my  college self swooned over him.  Brimming with cliches, the romantic melo’s love story did not wash out its beauty because of the heartfelt love fulfilment.

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Kim Hyun Woo/Kim Rae Won in Lovestory in Harvard – Kim Rae Won can fit any dream guy character and make it work.  His I’ll-be-your-hero kind of love to  his girl while challenging law school in Harvard was just as piercing as when they finally claimed their disrupted love when they  became a lawyer.

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Choi Seung Hee/Kim Rae Won in What star did you come from – Laid back Seung Hee oppa moved mountains and solidified his top actor who really knows how to act status in this I-fell-in-love-with-twin-sisters drama, but made sure that his girl would not feel that he was trapped in her sister’s memories.

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Hyun Jin Hun/Hyun Bin in My Lovely Samsoon – The guy who made all the chubby girls feel happy on the thought that a you-and-me-against-my-flabs-and-pesky-ex-gf is achievable.  *chuckles

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Gong Chan/Lee Dong Wook in My Girl – With the premise of hiring a fake cousin to appease his rich grandpa and finding himself loving his fake cousin in the process, Gong Chan had a lot of cutesies and refreshing chemistry moments with the con girl he hired.

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Lee Shin/Joo Ji Hoon in Goong/Princess Hours – I think Lee Shin is one of my favorites because of how he progressed in the story and how he made me so dreamy on   his projection of a crown prince who got in an awkward arranged marriage to a normal girl.  He literally came out fresh from a fairy tale book in a modern twist.

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Jung Ji Oh/Hyun Bin in  The World that they live in – this underrated drama is one of my favorites because of its rawness and spontaneity.  I think the reason  why I like Ji Oh oppa’s character here is because it was not coated and tailored fresh from a woman’s euphoric state, his being natural in his approach to love was relatable and his interaction with his woman was delightful and soothing.

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Choi Han Kyul/Gong Yoo in First Shop of Coffee Prince – Distant cafe boss who struggled thinking he was falling in love with a guy was adorably fun. period.  When he was liberated with the truth about his lead girl’s identity, boy he was so smooth in showering the love that he initially denied.

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Gu Jun Pyo/Lee Min Ho in Boys over Flowers – Suiting up for a famous manga character, Gu Jun Pyo swept the women of kdramaland with his undeniable charisma and pretty face.   His love approach started off bullying his girl and when he realized the girl seemed to be lingering in his heart, he did adorkable things by parading his wealth and protecting his girl at all cost even defying his witch-like mother.  He had to prove that rich-guy-poor-girl love affair can be achieved at the right time.

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Jo Guk/Cha Seung Won in City Hall – My ideal man is very close to Jo Guk oppa’s brilliant character.  He was smart and encouraging to his woman’s dreams.  He listens well, contemplative and yet he gives you some charming surprises.  His declaration of love in the closing scene of this drama is still my favorite  up to this date.

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Seo In Woo/Park Shi Hoo in Prosecutor Princess – With his killer gaze and the secret-vengeance-twist-turned-love-wins plot, I liked that In Woo’s pained character chose his emotions than revenge.  He was blithe at one moment and then blatant at the next which has made him more interesting and engaging aside from his handsome self.

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Hwang Tae Kyung/Jang Geun Seok in You’re Beautiful – In the spirit of presenting how idol stars could be when they are in love, Hwang Tae Kyung and the rest of ANJELL’s fired up a following on how an idol star faced the same dilemma coffee prince did.  He emerged victorious even with the second lead’s equally mesmerizing run for the lead girl’s hand.  He operated on a stuffed toy, took care of her when she was sick and a lot more little things that melted my heart.  

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 Sungkyunkwan Scholars/Park Yoo Chun, Yoo Ah In, Song Joong Ki in Sungkyunkwan Scandal – Before they became established lead men of their generation, they were the righteous, the charming and the dangerously sweet scholars of Sunkyunkwan.  I rooted for Geol Ah and this was before I was caught with Song Joong Ki syndrome.  If you haven’t seen this drama, please free your time.  More than the amazing story, you will be showered with pretty  boy faces that will bring you good vibes.

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Jun Jin Ho/Lee Min Ho in Personal Preference – He just walks in a drama set effortlessly bringing out the vibrancy of the character with his looks and charisma.  Architect Jin Ho not only protected Kae In but has  urged her to protect her dreams.  

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Cha Dae Woong/Lee Seung Gi in My GF is a Gumiho – Going extra mile to provide meaty food for his supernatural dream girl whom he has to protect against the rain, this vivacious love affair was well handed by Dae Woong matching the memorable portrayal of Shin Min Ah.  His I-will-be-here-for-you promise was just enough to win every girl’s heart.

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Kim Joo Won/Hyun Bin in Secret Garden – His sparkling jumpsuit and the dimples and the thirst to prove to the stunt woman he loved his devotion to be by her side was addictive and took kdrama addicts in frenzy.  The curl-up sweet scene still gives a smile on my face.

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Dokko Jin/Cha Seung Won in The Greatest Love – The top actor who fell in love with the struggling then-famous actress was so quirky and competitive that it made the drama a superb watch.  The crazy antics and the crazy development of love story was a runaway hit and the see how much i love you showcases of the crazily sweet Dokko Jin will sweep you off your feet.

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Kang Woo/Eric in Myungwol the Spy – Another top actor who used efficiently a manual to woo a secret North Korean spy.  It was no easy task but with heartfelt desire, Kang Woo oppa moved me with his unwavering strength to conquer the divided country conflict.

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Lee Shin/Jung Yong Hwa in You’ve Fallen For Me – Served youthful and cute, Lee Shin is every school girl’s dream boy.  He reminded us of those days when I have secret crushes and when we I do things so that they will notice me.  

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Lee Yoon Sung/Lee Min Ho in City Hunter – There’s something appealing to a man with a dangerous job.  His enigmatic performance was a high-octane hit and the added bonus of his suave ways of making his girl’s heart flutter was an icing on the cake.

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Kang Ji Wook/Lee Dong Wook in Scent of a Woman – All a woman needs is for a man to stay by her side and support her dreams and worries.  Ji Wook oppa encouraged his woman who realized too late how she missed enjoying her life that it was not too late to chase dreams.  He made sure his terminally ill girlfriend would be loved by a man who knows how to love and stayed with her even if she kept pushing him away.

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Cha Chi Soo/Jung Il Woo in Flower Boy Ramyun Shop – The persistent chasings of Chi Soo on his noona romance were most of the time hilarious but definitely worth the wait.  The rest of the flower boys alongside the main lead were also additional perks.

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Lee Jae Ha/Lee Seung Gi in King2Hearts – He proved that a man’s pure love can be a driving force to change for the better.  In this utopian unified korea story, he was a delightful mix of a man every girl wants to have.  Cheeky and charming, not perfect but caring, refraining from complicating things and loving.

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Choi Young/Lee Min Ho in Faith – Wielding sword has never been sexy until Choi Young.  His suave and manly ways in protecting the time traveling lead doctor made me resurrect those girly dreams of a knight in a shining armour.  *giggles  That scene where he chew the meds to give to the sick lead girl was oh so sweet.  

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Prince Lee Gak/Park Yoo Chun in Rooftop Prince – The quirky prince who traveled from the past to solve the murder mystery of his princess-to-be threw me at laughing fits when it was airing.  He was so cute that Yoo Chun finally made my list of actors to watch.  With an era he was not accustomed to, he was able to do one thing that is constant from the past and present – a sincere love.

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Kim Boong Do/Ji Hyun Woo in Queen In Hyun’s Man – My smart dream man swept my heart with his nimble mind and spontaneous ability to melt his woman.  He remains to be at my favorite characters’ list along with Healer and now Captain Si Jin.

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Kim Tan/Lee Min Ho in The Heirs – What makes Kim Tan different from Gu Jun Pyo is his reckless attitude defying his family and not waiting if time will resolve something.  It went out fine with him taking the risk to be with the girl he loved.  I think out of all Lee Min Ho’s dramas, it is here where he kissed so well considering his role is a college heir.

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Joo Joong Won/So Ji Sub in The Master’s Sun – This highly anticipated romcom deserved a place on my favorites because of its impeccable romcom storyline with a funny supernatural twist.  Joong Won oppa falling in love with a ghost seeing woman was hilariously fun and sunny.  His straightforward attitude in love cracked me up and drew sigh from me at the same time.  

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Kang Tae Ha/Eric in Discovery of Romance – Discovery of Romance is a secret kdrama gem you should take time to watch.   What I liked about Tae Ha oppa would be his never giving up on love and his realization that just because the first serving in love didn’t go well, it doesn’t mean the second chance won’t be too.  He made his first love realized the reason why after all those time fate still kept them bound.

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Do Min Joon/Kim Soo Hyun in You Who Came From the Stars – If aliens are really as hot as Do Min Joon then all girls would be permitting alien invasion.  The stranded alien who fell in love with a top actress has used his ability to protect his woman at all cost even defying time.  His unmatched chemistry with Cheon Song Yi had raised a frenzy addiction through his alien love definition.

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Jang Jae Yul/Jo In Sung in It’s Okay That’s Love – Jae Yul’s unconventional character won my heart because of his vulnerabilities.  Because he made me think that if I was in that position, I would also become his shield.  You see some girls would appreciate more if their men will be brave to admit to something they can no longer bear.  That’s what made Jae Yul oppa special.

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Seo Jung Ho/Ji Chang Wook in Healer – My 2015 favorite swept me off of my feet because of his manly-McGyver-ish charm.  A courier of impossible missions, his dangerous side made my eyes turned to hearts.  The Healer hideout kisses left me on trance.

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Kim Young Ho/So Ji Sub in Oh My Venus – Coach-nim is women’s solution to weight loss problem.  It would be heaven to do sit-ups with him… to feel his hands and body in the workout drills… and before my comment turns rated R, I have to go back to reality.  So Ji Sub is my dream guy period so if the drama is bad or good I don’t care as long as there will be topless scenes lol.  Thankfully the drama was generally okay so the romantic cuteness was a bonus.

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Kang Sun Woo/Jo Jung Seok in Oh My Ghost – When he thought his lead girl is suffering from bipolar disorder because of her ghost-possessed body, I was so amused with his line of thinking on how he resolves conflicts and was happy that he did  not linger to sulking and chose love over the absurdity of the situation.

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Choi Taek/Park Bo Gum  in Reply 1988 – He only knew baduk but he warmed my heart with his gentleness and knowing when to surge forward when it comes to claiming the love he waited for a long time.

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Yoo Si Jin/Song Joong Ki in Descendants of the Sun – He is the reason why I came up with this post.  haha  I was not so much his fan before but when he suited up in military uniform, everything changed.  His melting gaze, sweet remarks and soldier bearing are and will be putting me in frenzy right now.  

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Kang Chul/Lee Jong Suk in W:TwoWorlds – Strutting his dapper look and protecting the woman he loves while crossing two different worlds sent me to varied emotions ranging from a giddy-ish high-school girl, a woman tapping on her inner goddess and a lady who wants to fall in love again.  

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