K-drama Premieres: June 2020

This month is a relatively lean one for new dramas, with a tendency towards horror/thriller in genre, which feels appropriate given my own horror as I watch the brutality unfold on the streets of my home country. Wishing you all safety and health, as always.

1 | The School Nurse Files / 보건교사 안은영

MDL

Jun. 1, 6 eps, Netflix

Mystery, horror, comedy

Stars:

Jung Yumi, Nam Joo-hyuk

SNF

Photo credit: MyDramaList

Synopsis:

Ahn Eun-young is a school nurse and an exorcist. She has a special ability which allows her to see ghosts and she can also eradicate these ghosts. She uses a toy knife and a BB gun to take out the ghosts. A mysterious thing takes place at the school. Eun-young tries to be a good teacher and eradicate the bad ghosts with the help of Teacher Hong In-pyo.

  • Director Lee Kyung-mi wrote and directed hit comedy Crush and Blush and last year’s Persona
  • Based on the novel School Nurse Ahn Eun-young by Chung Serang, who is also the screenwriter of the drama (Read an excerpt of the novel)

 

2 | My Unfamiliar Family / (아는 건 별로 없지만) 가족입니다

MDL

Jun. 1, Mon-Tue, 16 eps, tvN

Family, comedy, drama

Stars:

Han Ye-ri, Kim Ji-suk, Shin Dong-wook, Joo Ja-hyun, Shin Jae-ha

Synopsis:

Is blood thicker than water? Kim Eun-hee is about to find out. She is the middle child in a family that is slowly starting to drift apart.

Her older sister is a former patent attorney, and her younger brother is a sensitive soul. And although her father is hard-working, he is often distant – an attitude that has her mother poised to begin a new chapter in her life. While she pines for intimacy, Eun-hee keeps her feelings hidden from her family. Instead, she prefers to confide in her close male college friend Park Chan-hyuk – a man who has become more like a brother to her than any of her real siblings. And it is to him that she turns for love advice as she looks to return to the dating scene after a long absence.

But what happens when events take a turn? Could the family pull together in time to weather the storm? And when the going gets tough, will it be Eun-hee’s family or her friends who step up to the plate?

  • Literal Korean title We Don’t Know Much, but We’re Family
  • Screenwriter of Flower Boy Next Door, Sweet Stranger and Me (The Man Living in Our House); director of Search: WWW

 

3 | Backstreet Rookie / 편의점 샛별이

MDL

Jun. 12, Fri-Sat, 16 eps, SBS

Comedy, romance

Stars:

Ji Chang-wook, Kim Yoo-jung

Synopsis:

Choi Dae-hyun runs into a group of female high school students, including Jung Saet-byul. The girls look like troublemakers. Saet-byul asks Dae-hyun to do an errand for them, which is to buy cigarettes from a convenience store. He buys the cigarettes for them and Saet-byul gets his cellphone number, but he never gets a call from her.

Four years later, Dae-hyun is 33 years old, and runs a small convenience store after he quit his job at a large company. He is looking for a part-time worker to work the night shift at his convenience store. Saet-byul comes to his store and she soon starts to work there. She is not a troublemaker anymore, but a university student guided by her strong morals.

  • Literal Korean title is Convenience Store Saet-byul; adapted from a webtoon of the same name
  • Director’s last three projects were Punch, Whisper, and The Fiery Priest
  • Yeah, that real-life age gap is 12 years.

 

4 | Sweet Home / 스위트홈

MDL

Jun. 13, Sat-Sun, 16 eps, Netflix

Horror, thriller

Stars:

Song Kang, Lee Shi-young, Lee Jin-wook

sweethomeMKSports

Photo credit: MK Sports

Synopsis:

The story of a high school student who becomes traumatized after being bullied in school and never leaves his room. He loses his family and moves to a new apartment, and strange and mysterious things begin to happen to him. A story of growth that follows the lead character as he tries to save people who have changed into monsters because of greed and begins to change his pessimistic view of society. 

  • Adapted from a webtoon of the same name
  • Directed by frequent Kim Eun-sook collaborator Lee Eung-bok (Mr. Sunshine, Goblin, Descendants of the Sun)

 

5 | It’s Okay to Not Be Okay / 사이코지만 괜찮아

MDL 

Jun. 20, Sat-Sun, 16 eps, tvN/Netflix

Romance, fantasy, comedy

Stars:

Kim Soo-hyun, Seo Ye-ji, Oh Jung-se

Synopsis:

A fantasy romance drama about a community health worker at a psychiatric ward who lives on 1.8 million won (approximately $1,520) a month and a storybook writer suffering from an antisocial personality disorder. A man who denies love and a woman who doesn’t know love defy fate and fall in love, finding their souls and identities in the process. 

  • Literal Korean title is (I’m a) Psycho but it’s Okay, which was obviously vetoed by Netflix

*Summaries are adapted from those provided by MyDramaList

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