6 Of YoonA’s K-Dramas To Add To Your Binge List
YoonA’s infectious smile and girl-next-door vibe have made her the poster girl of cool. A member of the ever-popular girl group Girls’ Generation, YoonA has struck a balance between her music and acting careers. For many, she remains their favorite idol of all time. As an actor, she has challenged herself, working constantly on her craft and skills. Here are six K-dramas starring YoonA which show her growth as an actor.
“King the Land”
The hardworking and ever-smiling Cheon Sa Rang (YoonA) has always aspired to work at the King Hotel since she was a little girl. As one of their most sought-after employees, Sa Rang’s amiable personality sees her promoted from concierge to the coveted staff at the ultra luxe “King The Land,” much to the ire of some of her colleagues. Gu Won (Lee Junho), the vainglorious head manager at King Hotel and the heir-in-waiting, has been skeptical about smiles since he thinks they hide maliciousness. Initially weary of Sa Rang and her beaming smile, Gu Won is bewildered when he can’t seem to get her out of his head. It’s not before long before the snarky Gu Won finds himself smiling whenever he spots Sa Rang, and he professes his feelings to her in his own crisp yet cute ways.
A straightforward rom-com, “King The Land” scores on its scorching chemistry between the two leads. Junho and YoonA have an undeniable comfort around the other, which translates into an easy and relatable onscreen camaraderie. From their comic to their romantic scenes together, these two are totally in-sync with each other.
Park Chang Ho (Lee Jong Suk) is a lawyer with a disastrous win rate, who soon finds himself handling a murder case. Given his “Big Mouth,” he bites off more than he can chew. Overnight, he is labeled the genius con artist “Big Mouse” and lands himself in jail. His wife Go Mi Ho (YoonA) is a strong-willed nurse who has relentlessly worked hard to see her husband succeed as a lawyer, and she could well be the trouble-shooter. Though weary of the choices he has made and their current situation, the fiercely loyal Mi Ho decides to do her own bit for her family.
“Big Mouth” is a riveting drama which keeps your interest piqued with compelling performances and its taut narrative. It would not be wrong to say YoonA’s portrayal of Mi Ho is one of her best, as she gets the tone right of Mi Ho’s resilience and shrewdness. Lee Jong Suk and YoonA may not have had as much screen time as expected, but they complement each other and shine throughout the show.
Kim Je Ha (Ji Chang Wook) is a former soldier, now a fugitive, on the run. He has been falsely accused of murdering his girlfriend by a nexus of extremely corrupt and powerful people. In his endeavor to prove his innocence, he lands himself in a murky and dangerous battle with top heavy politicians. And at the heart of it is An Na (YoonA), the illegitimate daughter of the Presidential candidate. Je Ha is assigned as a bodyguard to An Na, but he realizes she needs to be protected from her own kin, especially from her father’s legal wife Choi Yoo Jin (Song Yoon Ah) who sees An Na as an irritant in their political ambitions. An Na suffers from anxiety and has severe post traumatic disorder, and the aloof Je Ha sees himself looking out for and taking care of her in the best and most romantic way possible. What develops is a cute love story between the two, both having their shared wounds of the past, and they find comfort and solace in each other.
Ji Chang Wook is at his best as the drop-dead gorgeous secret agent Je Ha and is the pivotal figure, but that does not take away the importance of An Na. YoonA’s character is a quiet presence; she is a frail and meek character who steps up for herself in her own way in contrast to the raging fierceness between Je Ha and Yoo Jin. From Je Ha taking care of An Na’s ramyun cravings to stealing kisses under a blanket, this drama also had some good “aww” moments.
Watch “The K2” below:
Seo Joon (Jang Geun Suk) is a sought-after photographer who is flirtatious by nature and a bit of a playboy. But when he meets Ha Na (YoonA), a cheerful and vivacious young girl, he falls hard for her. Unbeknownst to the two, their parents, Seo Joon’s father and Ha Na’s mother, were also once in love with each other, but their love story didn’t pan out very well. However, Ha Na and Seo Joon realize history may be repeating itself when they understand how inexplicably their relationship is entwined with that of their parents. Will they have to forsake their love for their parents’ happiness?
“Love Rain” is a nostalgic ride with bittersweet memories of first love, longing, and heartbreak. As the drama switches between the 1970s and the present day, it gives all the retro feels. Plus the chemistry between Jang Geun Suk and YoonA is cute and makes this drama a perfect moody watch.
Start watching “Love Rain”:
Wang Won (Im Siwan) is the Crown Prince who is extremely ambitious and has a lust for power. His best friend and most trusted ally is his bodyguard Wang Rin (Hong Jong Hyuk). Then there’s Eun San (YoonA), the daughter of the wealthiest man in Goryeo, but her identity becomes switched with that of a handmaiden at a young age. The three are inseparable, but when both Wang Won and Wang Rin realize they have fallen in love with her, a complicated love triangle develops.
What would you choose between love, friendship, or ambition? The stakes are high for both Wang Won and Wang Rin, and it gets tough to pick your favorite side here. And Im Siwan and YoonA have adorable chemistry.
Watch “The King Loves”:
Nam Da Jung (YoonA) is a journalist with Scandal News, whose job has been restricted to writing trashy tabloid copies. She is assigned to chase Korea’s youngest Prime Minister Kwon Yul (Lee Beom Soo). Kwon Yul is a man of integrity. A widower, he is struggling as a single parent to raise his three children. Da Jung hopes she can snag a big exposé by being on his trail, which in turn would help her career and help her financially to take care of her ailing father. But what happens when you become the scoop instead? The two find themselves embroiled in a scandal, which could spell the end of Kwon Yul’s political career and have serious repercussions for both. They decide to enter into a contractual marriage to save face, only to realize the deal is for real as they fall in love.
“Prime Minister and I” is a breezy and light-hearted romcom. YoonA’s animated personality fits the character of Nam Da Jung and is a perfect match for Lee Beom Soo’s straight-jacketed Kwon Yul. This drama is the perfect watch if you are in the mood to laugh.
Check out “Prime Minister and I”:
Hey Soompiers, which one of these is your favorite YoonA drama? Let us know in the comments below!
Puja Talwar is a Soompi writer with a strong Yoo Tae Oh and Lee Junho bias. A long time K-drama fan, she loves devising alternate scenarios to the narratives. She has interviewed Lee Min Ho, Gong Yoo, Cha Eun Woo, and Ji Chang Wook to name a few. You can follow her on @puja_talwar7 on Instagram
Currently watching: “King the Land” and “See You in My 19th Life.”