Following the record-breaking popularity of K-dramas such as Squid Game, Hellbound and Vincenzo, streamer Netflix’s Korean arm has announced that they are launching more than 25 Korean shows in 2022, its largest number to date.
According to a release by the platform, Korean shows dominated global popular culture in 2021 with Squid Game alone becoming the streamer’s biggest show ever, most viewed in 94 countries.
The 95 per cent of Squid Game’s viewership came from outside Korea and led viewers to explore more K-content on Netflix.
The streamer said the global viewing hours of our Korean shows grew six-fold last year, compared to 2019.
“Credit for this growing global interest goes to the talented Korean creators we have been working with for the past few years. From 2016 to 2021, we launched more than 130 Korean titles. As a result, Netflix has become a compelling destination for fans of Korean content, who know that this is the home of diverse and high-quality Korean storytelling.
“As this fanbase increasingly includes viewers from all over the world, we are excited to continue collaborating with Korean storytellers to bring the K-wave to new heights,” Don Kang, VP, Content (Korea), shared in the release.
Some of the shows that viewers can look forward to include All of Us Are Dead, in which zombies invade a high school; Money Heist: Korea Joint Economic Area, an adaptation of the popular Spanish series; and the action-packed thrills of Seoul Vibe, a film where the adventures of a special-ops team take place against the backdrop of the 1988 Seoul Olympic Games.
The slate reintroduces some of the famous South Korean actors in new drama settings. For example, Crash Landing on You star Son Ye-jin stars in Thirty Nine alongside Hospital Playlist fan-favourite star Jeon Mi-do and Justice actor Kim Ji-hyun. The drama explores the life and friendship of three women who are about to turn 40.
Similarly, Forecasting Love and Weather features What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim star Park Min-young, Netflix favourite Song Kang and You Are My Spring actor Yoon Bak. The romantic drama revolves around the life and love stories of the people working at the Korea Meteorological Administration.
Fantasy drama The Sound of Magic stars popular South Korean actor Ji Chang-wook, best known to K-drama fans for shows Healer, Suspicious Partner and Lovestruck in the City, as a mysterious magician alongside Beyond Evil star Choi Sung-eun and Hwang In-youp of True Beauty fame. The series is directed by Kim Sung-youn of Itaewon Class fame. He is reuniting with writer Kim Min-jeong after Love In The Moonlight.
Black Knight, a dystopian drama, will mark the return of popular Korean actor Kim Woo-bin following his recovery from nasopharyngeal cancer. It also features Taxi Driver actor Esom and is set in 2071 where people depend on respirator masks to breathe. Woo-bin plays a delivery driver in the drama.
Other noteworthy titles in the list include Kim Hye-soo-starrer legal drama Juvenile Justice, romance drama Twenty Five, Twenty with Kim Tae-ri and Nam Joo-hyuk, fantasy show Tomorrow, Business Proposal, Remarriage and Desires, Model Family, Glitch, The Fabulous, Love to Hate You and Somebody.