In the past few years, with the Kwave taking over the world, it is very unlikely that you will find a person who has not entered the Kdrama world yet. With releases such as Train to Busan, Parasite, and of course Squid Game, the global audience is now convinced that kdramas and kmovies are top tier. Furthermore, it is no doubt that we all get attached to the touching stories and fresh characters that kdramas introduce to us. How can we not when the actors are so convincing in their roles. Let’s be honest, we are not the only ones who believed that Lee Dong Wook is an actual grim reaper in Goblin, right?
All the characters in kdramas are so realistic that you laugh in their joy and sob in their sorrows. The couples in kdrama never fail to make our hearts swoon. While there are countless characters in kdramas that pull out all the right kinds of emotions from the audience, there are plenty of problematic kdrama characters whose sole purpose is just to make our blood boil. In this article, we will be listing down all the kdrama characters that we feel are problematic.
Disclaimer: The list does not intend on hurting your feelings if you like the characters in any way.
Problematic Kdrama Characters That Tested Our Patience:
5. Moo Tae Gu from Voice Season 1
The ‘Voice’ series is one of the most well-known Korean thrillers that had over four seasons from 2017 to 2021. Furthermore, the mastermind behind this intriguing series is Ma Jin Won, who has written the screenplay for all four seasons. Voice is directed by the well-known director Kim Hong Seon, who will also be directing the Korean remake of Money Heist. You can read more about it over here. Each year, Voice returns with a gripping storyline and new villains that will give you nightmares. However, none of them will ever be able to surpass the psychopath that Moo Tae Gu from Voice Season 1 was.
Additionally, Voice Season 1 was set around the hard-working detective Moo Jin Hyeok played by Jang Hyuk (My Country: The New Age) who is trying to find how his wife was killed. He meets Kang Kwan Joo, played by Lee Ha Na (A Piece Of Your Mind), who is a voice profile. Furthermore, Kang Kwan Joo is also hunting the killer of her father. Over the course of sixteen episodes, the two of them discover the horrifying reality behind the death of their loved ones.
The series features Moo Tae Gu as the main villain. Moo Tae Gu is the good-looking and charming president of Sungwoon Express in the day. And at night, he likes to kill people with kettlebells. He is a typical psychopath who plans every single detail of his murder, and the detective’s failure in finding him only makes him feel even more powerful. Furthermore, Moo Tae Gu mercilessly smashes the victims with workout equipment. Need we say more? When he was caught in the end, the creepy smirk that he gave will never fail to appear in our nightmares. The reason behind why Moo Tae Gu is so popular is the beautiful man that played his role to perfection. Kim Jae Wook (My Private Life) as Moo Tae Gu proved that his acting talent had no boundaries. You can watch this mad man in Voice Season 1 on Rakuten Viki.
SKY Castle is one of the greatest gems that kdrama land has given us. From the plot build-up to the unpredictable characters, SKY Castle was perfect. Written by the incredibly talented screenwriter Yoo Hyun Mi (Thank You My Son) and directed by Jo Hyun Taek (Mirror Of The Witch), SKY Castle is a must-watch. The drama revolves around the toxic environment and unrealistic expectations that students have to deal with it. But this isn’t just any toxic environment. The drama is set up around SKY Castle, where only the most prestigious and educated families can live at. Although there isn’t a sign that says ”No Outsiders Allowed!” the message is pretty clear. It mainly focuses on the four families inside SKY Castle that are ready to eat up all the plastic in the ocean if it guarantees that their child will be able to get into Seoul National University.
As this drama is based on how crazy people can become to achieve what they want, there are plenty of problematic characters that will make you want to slap them across their faces. But none of them beats the level of evil that Coach Kim Joo Young is. Spoiler Alert: Coach Kim Joo Young took the quote ”I don’t meet the competitor, I destroy it!” a little too seriously. Her character is played by none other than the queen Kim Seo Hyung (Mine, Tempted, The Good Wife) herself. Although we were all watching her through our screens, Coach Kim Joo Young made us all shiver in our seats.
Additionally, if you look up the word ‘manipulative’ and it does not show you a picture of Coach Kim Joo Young, then your dictionary is wrong. From having a weird meditation chamber that she used for controlling students’ minds to destroying families without shame, this lady deserves to be in jail. You can watch this mind-blowing kdrama on Rakuten Viki.
3. Yoo Jung and Baek In Ha From Cheese In The Trap
There is no kdrama that has as contrasting of an audience as Cheese In The Trap. Whereas one part of the viewers believe that this kdrama is an incredibly realistic portrayal of how humans truly are. The other part of the audience believes that the drama was written by an angsty teenager. The drama is an adaptation of the popular webtoon ‘Cheese In The Trap‘ written by Soonkki. Side note, this kdrama became such a train wreck in its second half that even Soonkki spoke up about the lack of communication from the drama’s crew. Furthermore, Cheese In The Trap is directed by Lee Yoon Jung (The Lies Within), and the screenplay is written by Kim Nam Hee (Little Mom Scandal).
Park Yoon Jae, who plays the main lead Yoo Jung in Cheese In The Trap, made headlines when he spoke about how he was mistreated during the show. Despite all the chaos that the drama digressed into during its making, here we will solely be focusing on why Yoo Jung and Baek In Ha are two of the most problematic characters in kdrama.
Cheese In The Trap focuses on the daily life of university students. Our male lead is Yoo Jung. Additionally, he is picture-perfect with his wealth, good looks, and amazing grades. But we need to emphasize that the picture is picture-perfect because Yoo Jung is a psychopath in the making. He purposely messes up people’s lives and then blames it on their actions. Furthermore, his one eighty-degree switch from making Hong Seol’s life a living hell to suddenly developing feelings for her will give you a migraine. To make your migraine even worst, Yoo Jung also follows Hong Seol around like a creep. There is an episode in the drama where Yoo Jung follows Hong Seol around for a whole afternoon for no particular reason. Till the very end, Yoo Jung seems to think that no matter what he does, he is making the right decisions.
Coming to the next most problematic character in Cheese In The Trap, Baek In Ha. She is the twin of the second main lead Baek In Ho. On the one hand, we have Baek In Ho, who is working hard to break away from Yoo Jung’s family after he realizes how psychopathic Yoo Jung actually is. And on the other, Baek In Ha is just greedy and uses men for money. Her character is incredibly annoying and played extremely well by Lee Sung Kyung. You will find yourself pulling your own hair every time she is on screen, pulling someone else’s. It is safe to say that Baek In Ha’s chaotic character and Baek In Ho’s charm is what the audience stayed for at the end. You can watch Cheese In The Trap on Rakuten Viki.
At this point, you will be deemed a fake kdrama fan if you have not watched the mega-popular three seasons long The Penthouse: War In Life. Furthermore, this kdrama revolves around the filthy rich who either live in the massive 100 floors long Penthouse called Hera palace or dream of living in it. Shim Soo Ryun, played by Lee Ji Ah (The Ghost Detective), is married to Joo Dan Tae (I’m Not A Robot), the most influential people at the Hera Palace. Another prominent name at Hera Palace is Cheon Seo Jin, who is being played by Kim So Yeon (One More Happy Ending).
Cheon Seo Jin is a soprano prodigy and the director of the Arts Department at Cheong-A High School. Furthermore, she has a daughter named Ha Eun Byul, for whom Cha Seo Jin would keep the world at her feet. Additionally, this thrilling masterpiece is written by Kim Soon Ok (The Last Empress) and directed by Joo Dong-Min (The Last Empress).
When it comes to female villains, kdrama fans are mostly used to the annoying mother-in-law who throws water at the female lead and tells her to stay away from her son. However, Cheon Seo Jin sets the bar to be a villain to the next level. This lady has gained a cult-like following for being the badass diva that she is. Fans were even more amazed when they saw how contrasting Kim So Yeon’s real personality is from the character that she plays. But if we take off our bias glasses, we will be able to see how truly terrifying Cheon Seo Jin’s character is. With the abundance of problematic kdrama characters that this series featured, it was hard to pick one. But Cheon Seo Jin emerged as a true winner.
From slicing the throat of her opponent with a trophy, playing the piano like a madman after killing her father, and yelling ”Oh Yoon Hee!!!” every second minute, Cheo Seo Jin is no doubt one of the most problematic characters in the kdrama world. Additionally, you can see how wild she is in The Penthouse: War In Life on Rakuten Viki.
If you have not watched the Seo In Guk, Jang Na Ra, and Park Bo Gum gem I Remember You, then you are truly missing out. Furthermore, this kdrama is also popularly known as Hello Monster. Written by Kwon Ki Yong (Suspicious Partner), I Remember You is one of the best thrilling mysteries in the kdrama world. Moreover, Hello Monster is co-directed by No Sang Hoon (The Queen Of Office) and Kim Ji Won (My Country: The New Age). I Remember You aired in June of 2015 on KBS2. Fans of the mystery kdrama genre will easily bet their soul on this drama. A crime mystery with not even a single plot hole and genius characters.
The show revolves around Lee Hyun being played by Seo In Guk and Cha Ji An by Jang Na Ra. Additionally, Lee Hyun is a criminal psychologist and is the best in his field. Whereas Cha Ji An is a detective who doesn’t relent until she catches the criminal. The only thing common that the two of them have is the criminal Lee Joon Young, who changed the course of both their lives. Moreover, Cha Ji An actually suspects Lee Hyun of knowing more about Lee Joon Young than he puts on. She has been tracking Lee Hyun for years in hopes of finding out what happened to her father.
As the two get together to solve a case, horrifying truths from their past and barbarous connections with the people around them start coming to light. The series lays out the question of whether monsters are made or do the pain they endure kills off the human inside of them. Although the series did not receive a good viewership rating while it was airing, it is one of the most recommended dramas now.
Park Bo Gum’s portrayal of Lee Min in this kdrama lives in our head rent-free. His emotionless smile will send shivers down your spine. Truly one of the most messed up characters that you will ever find in a kdrama. Instead of looking for his lost brother on social media platforms or by going to the police. This man thought the only way by which he could reunite with his brother was by leaving weird hints in paintings at murder sites. You can watch Lee Min being one of the most problematic kdrama characters in I Remember You on Rakuten Viki.