5 Feel-Good C-Dramas To Watch When You Need A Little Pick-Me-Up
There are days when you crave a clever and mind-bending thriller and days when you want to watch an epic period drama that will leave you bawling.
However, on some days, we need a feel-good drama that will lift us up and make us laugh when we are not feeling up to it. Feel-good dramas often encompass inspiring stories of friendship, love, and personal growth. They are almost always heartwarming and optimistic which are the perfect ingredients for a pick-me-up!
Here are five entertaining feel-good Chinese dramas that will brighten your not-so-great days.
Warning: Minor spoilers for the drams below.
Wei Wei is a smart computer science major who works hard to prove that she is more than her beautiful looks. Xiao Nai is her senior computer science major who is literally perfect in every sense. Not only is he devastatingly handsome, but he is also great in academics, athletics, and gaming. Wei Wei and Xiao Nai get to know each other through an online game and eventually fall in love in the real world too.
The setup of the story is refreshing and draws you in no time. There aren’t your usual cliches and plot devices. Even though the couple encounters obstacles along the way, there is never too much angst and it just makes their relationship stronger at the end of the day. They say couples that game together, stay together. Gotta love our savvy and smart 21st-century couple who are equally matched in all areas!
The show also features scenes of the characters in their fantasy gaming world. And while the CGI in the fantasy world feels low budget, the poor effects work because the drama doesn’t require us to believe that the fantasy gaming world is real. Overall, it’s a charming little show with a fun twist that makes it easy to watch and a perfect escape from reality.
Watch the first episode of “Love 020” here:
“When We Were Young” is a coming-of-age story that follows a group of high school students in the ’90s as they navigate school and life. It covers the pains and joys of growing up – school stress, familial problems, first crush, identity confusion, and friendships. Some of the issues they face might be small and insignificant, but these are everyday problems that will resonate with most of us.
The slice-of-life style of the show really brings the characters to life. Each character gets their own storyline and they gradually mature as the drama progresses. You might not even notice their growth until you compare them to who they were at the beginning of the story. I particularly love how friendships are depicted. The connections and bonds forged among the characters really warmed my heart. By the end, I had grown so attached that it was hard to say goodbye to this group of friends.
“When We Were Young” will make you laugh and cry. It’s sincere and full of heart, like an old friend from school whose presence alone will make you smile when you are having a bad day.
Watch the first episode of “When We Were Young” here:
Meteor Garden (2018)
Adapted from the Japanese manga series, “Boys Over Flowers,” “Meteor Garden (2018)” is about a poor girl, Dong Shan Cai (Shen Yue) who cross paths with F4, the notoriously popular, rich, and handsome boys in the school. The show chronicles her love story with the arrogant Dao Ming Si (Dylan Wang).
There have been so many different adaptations of this popular manga series that most of us are familiar with the plot. I can’t vouch that this is the best one in terms of acting and plot but there’s something about the familiarity of this setup and story that is comforting and addictive. Despite knowing exactly what would happen, I couldn’t stop watching. The main reason for obsession is Dylan Wang’s charismatic portrayal of Dao Ming Si. The way he portrays Dao Ming Si is less hot-tempered and douchy, but a lot more boyish and endearing. His devotion to Shan Cai and how much he wants to make her happy will make you squeal.
Thanks to Dao Ming Si’s adorable and childish antics, the tone of the show is generally more silly than serious. It feels relatively low stake in spite of the many obstacles hindering our main couple. Sometimes when you are not feeling up to it, you don’t really want to have to work your brain too hard while watching a show. “Meteor Garden (2018)” makes a great easy watch for times like this.
“My Mr. Mermaid” is a sports-themed romantic comedy-drama that centers around the romance between Yun Duo (Tan Song Yun), a sports reporter and Tang Yi Bai (Dylan Xiong), a former swimming champion, who hopes to return to the swimming scene after a doping scandal. They become each other’s pillar of support as they overcome challenges while pursuing their dreams.
“My Mr. Mermaid” is a simple and uplifting drama that will cheer you up when you are down. The tone and pacing are light and breezy. Aesthetically, it is such a bright and pretty show – yes, the handsome and occasionally shirtless boys add to the pretty too. It also has a motivating and meaningful soundtrack filled with songs that will inspire you to not give up on chasing your dreams.
I love the sweet friendships, the supportive romance between the leads, and watching the characters overcome all odds to fulfill their aspirations. It won’t change your life but it will leave you feeling warm and fuzzy, making it a perfectly delightful drama that will take your mind off your troubles for a moment.
Watch the first episode of “My Mr. Mermaid” here:
Put Your Head On My Shoulder
“Put Your Head On My Shoulder” is a campus romantic comedy that follows Si Tu Mo (Xing Fei) who is facing uncertainties about her life after graduation. She accidentally ends up living together with handsome science genius, Gu Wei Yi (Lin Yi), who falls for her.
Written by the writer of “A Love So Beautiful,” the show also has a similar light-hearted and joyful vibe. But unlike “A Love So Beautiful,” the reserved and serious male lead actually falls for the cheerful female lead first. It’s fun watching him being endearingly clueless about how to impress her and how he tries to be very logical about his feelings and situations. The accidentally living together trope is overused but it’s so fun to watch because it serves up so many amusing and adorable cohabitation hijinks.
The drama never veers into angst-y territory that will keep our main pairing separated (because that will not do). We just get sweet moments after sweet moments. At 24 episodes, it is quite a short drama so the plot seldom drags. Despite deploying some romantic comedy cliches, the drama still feels fresh and captivating. If you need a little sugar boost to perk you up, this show has plenty to offer.
What do you think of the list, Soompiers? Do you have other feel-good Chinese dramas to recommend? Let me know below!