by MattPeddlesden, June 21, 2021


There’s never a dull moment in the K-Drama scene, whether you’re watching the seemingly endless supply of amazing shows or engaging in discussions and reading reviews on this amazing site. But have you been keeping an eye on those charts to the right hand side of the front page? These are Top Airing Shows, Top Upcoming Shows, and the most exciting one of all, Most Popular Shows.

What excites me most about these charts is that they give some really interesting insight into the interests and moods of MyDramaList watchers, what they're enjoying at the moment, and the long-term popular shows which newcomers will most likely watch first. What are these shows and how do the charts change over time?

A little about me: 

Currently, I’m a video game producer, but I'm also a data enthusiast. I get far too excited about data. I used to write software that produced hundreds of pages of reports for local government contact centres, telling them everything they could ever want to know about how they were performing. To others, it may be dry and tedious work, but to me, it’s a bottomless pit of fun! :)

I used to write these reviews on my feed, but I thought I'd have a go at writing an article and see what kind of feedback I get from it!

Anyway, enough waffle. On to the charts!


No changes in the top three, with Goblin (123k), Strong Woman Do Bong Soon (112k), and Descendants of the Sun (106k) remaining dominant and holding their positions well. Just in the last month, Goblin gained about 4,000 watchers, so there's no sign of it slowing down. These are three absolutely amazing dramas and great ones for newcomers to sink their teeth into and start off that addiction... umm... I mean, fantastic new hobby!

From here onwards, there has been nothing short of earthquakes on the charts. This isn’t about movers and shakers anymore, this is about the charts being turned upside down!

In my last review, Position 4 was held by Boys Over Flowersbut that’s fallen two places and is now in Position 6, while W: Two Worlds (102k) and Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo (101k) are sitting in Positions 4 and 5, respectively. These are two more amazing dramas, and when you’ve got Lee Jong Suk in one and Lee Sung Kyung in the other, what is there to lose!

But wait… how is Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo in 5th with the same watcher count as W: Two Worlds in 4th? Well, it’s not exactly the same. There’s a tiny difference between them, and that means that it won’t be long -- two to four weeks I’d guess -- before the 4th and 5th swap places. Even more interesting, Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo's site ranking is only a little behind Goblinso I’m anticipating Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo to take over some spots in the long run, and we may see it challenging the top three! SWAG!

Coming in at Number 7, we have the stalwart You Who Came From the Stars (98k). It’s been hanging around Position 7 for a while now, but maybe we’ll see some movement here over the next months, as Boys Over Flowers continues it’s graceful descent down the charts.

At Number 8 we’ve got The Heirs (97k), another drama following a gentle descent like Boys Over Flowers, as people are watching it less and less compared to other dramas.

In the final two slots we have a flip from my last review: What’s Wrong with Secretary Kim (90k) has taken over Pinocchio (89k) to steal the 9th slot and is building some distance. While it has a bit of a journey to move any further up the charts, it certainly has the momentum to do so. Both awesome dramas with a strong cast, I'm conflicted about which one I liked better.

The charts don’t just stop at Number 10; I could go on forever, but I only want to cover two more. I am keeping a close eye on two dramas in particular because a) I loved them to bits, and b) so did everyone else, it seems. They are STORMING up the charts and have been since they were broadcast. Look at the age of everything that is in the top ten, and now realize that in Position 14, we have the utterly fabulous Crash Landing On You (77k) and at Position 17, the unforgettable It’s Okay to Not Be Okay (74k).  

What’s even more exciting here, backing up their meteoric rise through the charts, is that both Crash Landing On You and It’s Okay to Not Be Okay have site rankings that are much better than even Goblinwith It’s Okay to Not Be Okay having the best of the bunch. This tells me we should expect great things, including these shows climbing up the list and appearing in the top ten. This is absolutely appropriate; a top ten chart that doesn’t eventually feature these two shows is frankly wrong! :)


Before I wrap up, let’s take a quick look at the Top Airing Shows. There’s been an amazing number of watchers for the shows that are currently running. 

Doom At Your Service (21k) is 10 episodes into its run and if it continues the current pace, it will follow a similar trend to both Crash Landing On You and It’s Okay to Not Be Okay.  Park Bo Young and Seo In Guk’s latest drama is an interesting one, and I, for one, am continually intrigued to see where the team will take the story.

Most shows on the top airing list have more than 10k watchers, which means there’s nothing but great shows that people are really enjoying. 

I’m disappointed to see Sell Your Haunted House (9k) lagging behind, but hopefully it’ll pick up. I might be biased though, as I’m a huge Jang Na Ra fan; she can do no wrong! I enjoy fantasy stories and this is a slightly different take on it, so it’ll be interesting to see how it concludes. 

I’m finding My Roommate is a Gumiho to be great fun on iQIYI, and it's another opportunity to see another favourite of mine, Kang Han Na, in action.  Only four or five episodes in so far, but with 13k watchers, I fully expect to see this one easily bust past 20k. 

That’s it for now, folks! I’d love to hear your feedback about this article and any questions you have about trends in K-Drama. Do you find this kind of article interesting and entertaining? Let me know!

Thanks for taking the time to read my first article!

Acknowledgment and creditsThank you to the editors who edited this article.  We do not own any of the images; credits go to their respective owners. The images are from drama photos in MDL. GIF sources: GIF1GIF2GIF3. Charts were taken on June 8, 2021. Visual design by Cho Na

Edited by: Mina (1st editor), devitto (2nd editor)

kdrama charts top ten most watched