From “Pervert” to “Prince”: Funny and Unique Names in K-dramas

Korean dramas are always playing with our emotions and taking us, the viewers, on an emotional roller coaster ride. However, with so many dramas being continuously produced, one of the important features of a memorable drama is to create a character that viewers will remember. Thus, drama writers will think of the funniest or most unique names so that such character will be engraved in our minds. Here are 9 funny or unusual names given to past Korean drama characters!

i.said.hi is a Soompi writer who loves catching up on the latest Korean entertainment buzz. She wishes that there was a university purely dedicated to Korean entertainment because she is confident that she would graduate at the top of her class!

sam soon

Kim Sam Soon – “My Name is Kim Sam Soon” (2005)

As if the drama’s title wasn’t enough to give the drama away, actress Kim Sun Ah plays the talented pâtissier Kim Sam Soon who has dreaded her comedic name since she was young. As ‘Sam’ means ‘three’ and ‘soon’ means ’10,’ the fact that Sam Soon’s name meant the term ’30’ did not settle well with the baker who was soon to turn thirty years of age. Yet, through the romance and opportunities of life Sam Soon experiences, the once insecure woman accepts her name and identity as Kim Sam Soon. 

What spawned from this drama were many nicknames such as ‘Sam Shik‘ that Kim Sam Soon utilized to refer to actor Hyun Bin‘s character. 

lee seung gi

Hwang Tae Ja – “Seven Princesses“(2006)

When Lee Seung Gi announced that he would play the character Hwang Tae Ja in “Seven Princesses,” many laughed due to the hilarity of his name. The full name of the character, Hwang Tae Ja, literally translates to ‘prince,’ which was convenient since Lee Seung Gi’s character was portrayed as a spoiled mama’s boy. Of course, this drama was full of other hilarious names. Thank goodness in the drama this ‘prince’ eventually matured and became an amazing family man!

boys over flowers

Geum Jan Di – “Boys over Flowers” (2009)

Who could forget the lucky girl who was constantly surrounded by very handsome boys while she attended the prestigious Shinhwa High School? However, what made her more memorable was probably her unique name: Geum Jan Di. If translated word for word, ‘Geum’ means ‘gold,’ and ‘Jan Di’ means grass. Thus in reality, Geum Jan Di’s name literally translated to Gold Grass. Phew, thankfully Geum Jan Di had F4 around her to protect her from such possible bullying, with Goo Jun Pyo by her side during her time at the competitive high school. 


Gae In – “Personal Taste“(2010)

It seems that the writers of the drama decided to add some pun, using the name of Son Ye Jin‘s character Gae In, to intertwine with the drama title. As the name ‘Gae In’ can translate to ‘of being of one’s own, the title “Personal Taste” perfectly matched with the drama’s character. Of course, the drama’s main question was whether in the end Gae In would personally choose Lee Min Ho. That doesn’t seem like a tough decision at all!

lee seung gi shin min ah

Gu Mi Ho – “My Girlfriend is a Gumiho“(2010) 

Although Lee Seung Gi’s character continued to call Shin Min Ah‘s character ‘Mi Ho,’ it wasn’t a sweet name that Gu Mi Ho’s parents named their daughter. Far from that, Mi Ho was the shortened term for the word Gumiho, a word that means ‘nine-tailed fox.’ Indeed, Mi Ho was actually a nine-tailed fox who followed Lee Seung Gi’s character around after being accidentally released from a seal. Despite seeming cute and quirky, one had to always be on guard for fear that she might eat their liver. Yikes!


Lee Soon Shin – “You’re the Best, Lee Soon Shin (2013)

If having a boy’s name was not enough, being a girl named after one of Korea’s most recognizable historical figures, Lee Soon Shin, would probably make her the center of attention.

Okay, here is a brief History 101 from a former history major: General Lee Soon Shin was a distinguished naval commander who led victories for the Joseon Dynasty. 

Despite the name of IU‘s character initially causing quite a stir, in the end many remembered IU for her role as a girl named after one of Korea’s historical heroes. 


Garbage – “Reply 1994” (2013) 

There were many nicknames in this particular tvN drama as most of the male characters had nicknames throughout the episodes. Yet, the funniest nickname of them all belonged to Jung Woo‘s character who was continuously called Garbage or Trash. Hilariously, Jung Woo’s character was known as Garbage for all 21 episodes, up until the last 30 minutes of the drama. Although it was revealed that the actual name of Jung Woo’s character was actually Kim Jae Joon, many preferred to call him Garbage over his lackluster name. Personally, I prefer to call him Garbage as well!

shining romance

Byun Tae Shik – “Shining Romance ” (2014) 

Although his full name is Byun Tae Shik, the annoying ex-husband in the drama probably deserves his comedic name. When the end syllable is pronounced with a bit more emphasis, the name Byun Tae Shik can be translated to “Like a Pervert.” Frankly, Byun Tae Shik deserves such a hilarious name for his wrong doings in the drama!


Ah Mo Ne – “Hotel King  (2014)

If you watch “Hotel King,” you must try following along with Lee Da Hae‘s character when she pronounces to the world that her name is Ah Mo Ne. The unique name perfectly describes the character’s unique personality amid being in a battle to maintain her father’s hotel. Now I dare you to try and say “It’s me, Ah – Mo – Ne,” with high confidence, and in no time that you can be just like the main character!

Did you find any names memorable when watching a drama? Comment below with some of the names of drama characters that you found funny or unique!

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