It’s one of the most painful things that can happen when watching a K-drama: falling for the second male lead. Doomed from the start, our love for that frequently more patient, quiet, and nicer guy than the lead only causes heartache and bitter complaints; why doesn’t she choose this guy instead?! At the end, many K-drama fans can only soothe their broken hearts with this offer: “It’s okay. If she doesn’t take you, I will!”
Here is a list of 10 second leads that may have stolen your heart this year. Your blood pressure may rise again as you relive the angst of not seeing them end up with their hearts’ desires, but keep cool- there has to be a fanfic out there to live out that fantasy for you.
It’s hard not to fall for the dependable body guard who will rescue you from thugs that stalk you through dark alleyways. Okay, he might have been even cuter with Little Tae-yang, but he was still adorable with Big Tae-yang.
He liked her so much and for so long! That is what I wail every time I think of Kim Ji Hoon and his unrequited love for Park Shin Hye‘s character in “Flower Boy Next Door.” He left little drawings on her milk carton every day, which would come together as pages of a flip-book depicting a guy falling in love and giving the girl flowers. Sweet!
Okay, we can argue that he may have been the tertiary male lead, after Yoo Yeon Seok. Still, the way he was so protective over Suzy and the sour faces he made at any creature with the XY chromosomes whenever they got near her make him a viable candidate for the sweet-but-doomed love category.
4. Kim Bum (“Goddess of Fire, Jung-yi“)
We don’t have to go to fanfics for this fantasy to come true; Kim Bum ended up with the real Moon Geun Young in the end. Yet, in the drama, he was oppa-zoned right from the beginning, no matter how many times he risked his life for her.
Compared to the icy cold Lee Dong Gun, Jong Yong Hwa was a warm fire to Yoon Eun Hye‘s character in “Marry Him If You Dare.” Was he the better choice for Yoon Eun Hye? There is no answer for this one, at all.
6. Lee Chun Hee (“Dating Agency: Cyrano“)
Master! Mysterious and looking incredibly dapper in a white button-down, Lee Chun Hee was so far from the “Chunderella” image from his “Family Outing” days. Cook for me, Master!
Kang Ha Neul could sing and play the guitar, cello, and piano! He was also smart, handsome, and sweet to Ha Yeon Soo. Sure, he was a bit snooty, but it was fun to see Yong Jun Hyung get all riled up at Kang Ha Neul’s little jabs.
8. Ji Chang Wook (“Empress Ki“)
Incredibly immature, he is nothing but trouble to Ha Ji Won’s character in “Empress Ki” at first. Still, who can’t help but root for the guy who is trying to become a strong and brave leader for the woman he loves?
9. Yoo Yeon Seok (“Reply 1994“)
Chilbong! And that darn drama that teases us so. Trash oppa quickly stole many hearts in the beginning of “Reply 1994,” but Chilbong came out with punch in the latter half with his sweet, shy smile, and sad puppy eyes that look at Na Jung with so much adoration.
Kim Woo Bin doesn’t have traditional good looks, but man, is he charismatic on screen. And when he pulls in Park Shin Hye for that hug in the police station? He pulled in our hearts too!
Which second lead in a K-drama stole your heart this year?