Fantasy K-drama recommendations

We all know how Netflix works. Watch one show about cars and it suggests you see all the other shows about cars. The same happened after I saw Hellbound, My Holo Love and Abyss. Netflix is now advertising all its other South Korean fantasies at me. So this week I tried four I hadn’t seen before.

Zombie Detective (2020, 12 episodes) is about Kang Min-ho, a young man with amnesia who wakes up on a rubbish tip as a zombie. He spends a year relearning human skills and then assumes the identity of a private detective. Min-ho teams up with journalist Gong Sun-ji to investigate the mystery of his past. Genre: Comedy

I’ve only seen one episode of Zombie Detective so far. I’m impressed by the show’s wry humour and its character writing. Sun-ji and Min-ho are both very likeable. I’ll definitely watch this again.

Hotel Del Luna (2019, 16 episodes). The hotel in the title is in central Seoul. Only dead people can see it! The hotel’s owner is Jang Man-wol. She looks like a young woman but she’s over 1,300 years old. In the first episode Man-wol encounters the story’s hero Gu Chan-sung. He’s in his late twenties and a Harvard graduate. A bit of an age gap there, methinks. Genre: Dark fantasy

Korea has a tradition of ghost belief that’s far more defined than anything I’ve seen in my native Britain. Our ghosts hang around old buildings looking pale. Korean ghosts seem to have far more get up and go. That’s why I’m really intrigued by Hotel Del Luna. I’m one episode in and I think it’s going to be good viewing. I don’t really like the characters yet. Jang Man-wol is jaded and cynical. Gu Chan-sung wasn’t on screen for long enough to tell much about him.

My Love From The Star (2014, 21 episodes) is the story of Do Min-joo, a world-weary extraterrestrial and resident of Korea for 400 years. He’s been there for so long he’s done military service 49 times! Gosh. Min-joo is due to leave Earth when he falls in love with a famous actress. Genre: Romantic comedy

I’ve watched one episode of this. Do Min-joo comes across as arrogant and his heavy fringe (bangs) annoyed me. I liked the actress character far better. Her scenes were an interesting insight into what life might be like for a K-drama star. I’ll definitely watch this again.

Blood (2015, 20 episodes). Park Ji-sang is a top surgeon and he’s also a vampire! Genre: Medical drama and romantic thriller

I love vampire dramas but couldn’t get interested in Blood. I’ll give it another go, just in case. So far it doesn’t look like Vampire Diaries has anything to be afraid of.

I was drawn to these four South Korean shows by their fantasy elements. Who doesn’t like aliens or vampires or ghosts or zombies? Not me, I love them. Have you seen any fantasy k-dramas that you’d like to recommend? Leave a comment below or tweet me at @spookycupboard.

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