The Soompi Awards are back, and this round, we are paying tribute to the amazing ensembles that have elevated our favorite dramas. While we love our main leads, more often than not we also find ourselves falling in love with the other characters that orbit around them. Be it their friends, co-workers, family, or even nemeses, we are just as invested in their stories and can’t get enough of them! And with a great ensemble, these stories are told to the fullest, and thanks to them, we are transported to fantastical lands each time we watch the dramas.
And so without further ado, here are your 10 nominees for Best Acting Ensemble:
Age of Youth 2
“Age of Youth 2,” like the first season, centers around five women in their twenties who are also housemates. We follow these strong, complex women as they navigate life’s various challenges, including eating disorders, victimization, employment, and relationships. The strong cast delivers nuanced performances, and it’s easy to find ourselves wanting to live with them too!
Even though “Because This Is My First Life” is centered on Lee Min Ki’s and Jung So Min’s characters, we can’t help but fall in love with their friends and colleagues (Bomi!) as well. Whether it’s girl-crush Woo Su Ji (Esom), or the relatable couple Ho Rang (Kim Ga Eun) and Won Seok (Kim Min Seok), the drama allows us to firmly join in on the ride with them, thanks to their solid and layered acting.
Catch the first episode of “Because This Is My First Life”:
“Bride of the Water God” is a story about different gods vying for power, and among them is water god Habaek (Nam Joo Hyuk), who inexplicably loses his power when arriving in Seoul. Although many viewers found the drama to not live up to the original manhwa, we still need to give credit where credit is due, and that is the cast. Among them, Gong Myung and Krystal imbue their characters with a sense of vulnerability, and of course Im Joo Hwan undoubtedly delivers a strong performance.
Catch the first episode of “Bride of the Water God”:
A very endearing and heartwarming family-centered drama that captured many viewers’ hearts, “Father Is Strange” enjoyed huge popularity and also received much attention during awards season. This is truly a large ensemble cast, and everyone gets their chance to shine and to tug at our heart strings. Thanks to the veteran actors Kim Yeong Cheol and Kim Hae Sook anchoring the family (and drama), as well as the many talented young actors who play their onscreen children, viewers are able to easily immerse themselves in a very realistic display of family life.
Catch the first episode of “My Father Is Strange”:
This is a drama that will make you laugh one second, and cry a river the next. It is a story that deals with regrets, reconciling with them, and understanding that while life will have inevitable heartbreaks, there will always be people standing by us. The cast delivers very poignant performances, with a special shout out to Kim Mi Kyung who plays Jin Joo’s (Jang Na Ra) mother – always a joy to watch.
Catch the first episode of “Go Back Couple”:
“Goblin” is an undeniable hit of 2017, breaking records and becoming a cultural phenomenon. A main reason for this is no doubt the stellar casting, both individually and as an ensemble. Even the actors playing Goryeo-era Wang Yeo (Kim Min Jae) and Kim Sun (Kim So Hyun), who only appear for a few minutes each time, deliver grounded performances. There really are no weak links in this chemistry-filled cast!
Catch the first episode of “Goblin”:
If “Age of Youth 2” is led by a strong female cast, then “Hwarang” is its male counterpart. This drama is a coming-of-age story which follows (very handsome) young men from different social classes trained to protect Silla. The chemistry is evident among these young men and will have you constantly longing for more bromantic scenes. In fact, the cast are pretty chummy off-screen as well, as seen by their support for each other well after they finished filming.
Catch the first episode of “Hwarang”:
This mystery and suspense drama starts out with a plane unexpectedly crashing and having its passengers stranded on an island. Among these passengers are nine personnel from Legend Entertainment, who mostly are hiding their own secrets and agendas. Though the ending isn’t perfect, we certainly can’t deny that the casting of these characters and their characterizations are pretty much on point!
“School 2017” is a teen drama that captures the growing pains and a sense of yearning for the future that we’ve all felt while in high school. And while most of the cast are younger and less-experienced than most of the ensembles on this list, they’re able to hold their own and deliver very natural, layered performances. They’ve definitely earned recognition and fans through this drama, and we can’t wait to see them in their next project!
Catch the first episode of “School 2017”:
The Best Hit
“The Best Hit” is a “variety-drama” that follows in the veins of “Producer.” And with many “2 Days & 1 Night” personnel being involved in this project, it’s fun to see the many nods to and cameos from the variety show. Seeing the cast’s chemistry both on and off-screen, and knowing that they’re having such a blast during filming, undoubtedly makes it so much more fun to watch for viewers as well.
Hey Soompiers, which ensemble do you think had the most chemistry and did their characters the most justice? Let us know in the comments below, and don’t forget to vote, vote, and vote!
Belinda_C believes that a great ensemble is really the glue that holds a drama together! And pure bromance is what holds Shinhwa together! 20 years and counting!