Kdramas, Kpop and variety shows are like the triple threat of the Korean entertainment industry. I first started off by a drama that had K-pop idols as the main leads (Siwon and Donghae from Super Junior), and it was natural for me to discover more dramas and even music because of them, but variety shows were such a foreign concept to me.
My 1st variety show was Running Man Episode 135 with Siwon and Jackie Chan. Honestly, it was such a cultural shock, I didn't know what I was watching, but it was super addicting because here I am 8 years later and all caught up to every single episode of Running Man (plus a few rewatches on my favourite episode). xD
There's really no need for an introduction to this one, it's been around for almost 10 years now and everyone probably heard of it if not watched an episode for their favourite idols or actors.
This show is about celebrity dads taking care of their kids for 3 days and 2 nights without the mom around to help them. Overall it's such a cute heartwarming and educational show that kinda encourages normal dads to stay at home and bond with their kids.
I love them all, but my favourites are the Song Triplets, Nauen and Gunho, Rowoon, Jam Jam, and most recently Hao. ❤
This show had 3 seasons in total, and they were all great. It's basically a life-size reenactment of the board game Cluedo. The cast members would each choose a role and improvise in the mystery the writers wrote either based on real-life cases or just stories they made up, and 1 (or 2) of the cast is the killer, while the rest would try to search for clues to find the killer.
The stories and mystery in this show were really cool, and the audience was just as clueless as the cast members so we'd get a chance to participate and choose our own suspects. Sadly though it's been 3 years and still no news about a 4th season. ;(
This show is basically a life-sized large scale Escape Room game. There are 3 seasons, and the 3rd one is currently airing.
Every 2episodes have a theme, either it's about ghosts, zombies, time travelling, serial killers, a virus, or even cults. One of the best thing about this show, besides the funny cast and their great chemistry, is the fact that the stories are all connected.
Thankfully all 3 seasons had the same cast, and we could slowly see them bond xD They are all such unique characters, we have Shin leader, the genius, the scaredy-cat, the lucky one, the young cutie and the strong muscle man. xD
Basically, it's a mystery music show. they started with 8 contestants (now they have 6), and the guest needs to eliminate the tone-deaf ones so they can perform the last stage with a talented singer, but usually, it doesn't work out for them. xD
The 7th season of this show is currently airing, and it also got a Filipino remake, and they are working on an American adaption as well.
It's really fun to guess alongside them, and the people coming on this show are so talented and so funny!
The 1st season was more about Super Junior, but this season it was like a super junior vs idols. Each episode new groups would come on the show and "fight" with super junior and they play games together, it was fun both as an ELF and as a Kpop fan~ I honestly hope they'll come back with a third season. ;(
This show was like the grownup version of TROS, the writers would set up the celebrities' kids while the dads would watch how the date went from the studio and so they'd get to see a new side of their daughters. xD
Usually, the daughters or their dates could agree to continue throughout the show, or the writers would set them up with someone new, and at the end of the show, the couple's would either part ways or agree to continue dating outside the show. A couple from the previous season's ended up getting married, and I'm still waiting for the 5th season. ;p
The concept of this show was based on the manga/drama The Lair Game, the best part about this show was that we got to see the smart and sometimes manipulative side of the cast. They would also try to form alliances or show their leadership skills.
This show gathered foreigners living in Korea and discussed a lot of world issues and topics through the perspectives of each country. Overall it was enlightening and funny, but it was slightly really long so I couldn't keep up with it. xD
There are of course many many many more variety shows, and I usually watch some of them on a less regular basis, like Busted, Knowing Bros, Weekly Idol, 2 Days & 1 Night, I Live Alone, King of Mask Singer among many others.
For one thing, variety shows are funny, and they are more lighthearted and easy to watch, so they become a nice break away from the never-ending list of dramas, and at times they make us see a new outlook to our favourite idols as well.
Have you seen any of these variety shows?
And which one is your favourite?
*Gif and picture credits to owners, all found around Google, Instagram, Twitter, Youtube or recap pages.