7 of The Best Upcoming K-Dramas In April 2024

Apr 1, 2024

1. Parasyte: The Grey

Lead cast: Jeon So-nee, Koo Kyo-hwan, Lee Jung-hyun

After producing Netflix’s The Bequeathed earlier this year, Train to Busan director Yeon Sang-ho has once again teamed up with the global streaming giant to present his latest directorial effort, a reimagining of the classic Japanese manga Parasyte, which has already been adapted in Japan as a popular anime and a pair of films.

Set in the same world but with different characters, Parasyte: The Grey takes place in Korea, just as parasitic aliens rain down from the sky and take over human hosts.

Jeon So-nee (Our Blooming Youth) is a cashier who is only partly infected and teams up with a low-level gangster, portrayed by Koo Kyo-hwan (D.P.), to escape both the human-eating aliens and the government’s Team Grey, which has been tasked with wiping them out.

Director Yeon’s previous collaborations with Netflix include Hellbound and Jung-E, with Hellbound 2 also due out in the near future. (Netflix, April 5)

2. Lovely Runner

Lead cast: Kim Hye-yoon, Byeon Woo-seok, Song Geon-hee, Lee Seung-hyub

Kim Hye-yoon (Snowdrop) stars in Lovely Runner as Im Sol, a woman whose dreams of becoming a filmmaker were dashed after an accident that left her paralysed. Now her only escape is the music of idol Ryu Sun-jae (Byeon Woo-seok, Strong Girl Nam-soon), but tragedy strikes once again when her beloved musician dies following his own accident.

Then, one morning, Sol wakes up in a classroom, only the clock has gone back 15 years. Magically returned to her high-school days, she sees this as another chance to change both of their destinies.

This bright and peppy high-school fantasy romance co-stars Song Geon-hee (Joseon Attorney: A Morality) and Lee Seung-hyub (Sh**ting Stars). (tvN, April 8)

3. Blood Free

Lead cast: Ju Ji-hoon, Han Hyo-joo

In the near-future dystopia sci-fi series Blood Free from Disney+, a biotechnology company has ushered in a new era thanks to its product BF (blood free), an artificially cultured form of meat that quickly comes to dominate the market.

The company is run by Yoon Ja-yu (Han Hyo-joo, Moving) and her actions, as well as their moral implications, soon draw a number of other characters out of the woodwork, including the ex-soldier Woo Chae-woon (Ju Ji-hoon of Kingdom).

Blood Free is the latest project from writer Lee So-yeon, the mastermind behind both seasons of the hit K-drama Stranger. (Disney+, April 10)

4. Under the Gun

Lead cast: Zuho, Jo Soo-min

Zuho of the K-pop outfit SF9 and Jo Soo-min, known for her pivotal role in the drama series The Penthouse, team up for new series Under the Gun.

Zuho plays Go Gun, the son of a professional poker player who faces a difficult choice when his family’s honour is left in tatters. The only way he can see out of his predicament is by following in his father’s footsteps and joining the Korean Poker League.

With the help of transfer student Cha Se-young (Jo), Gun learns to overcome his fears in his quest to save his family. (Lifetime, April 12)

5. Missing Crown Prince

Lead cast: Suho, Hong Ye-ji

MBN transports us back to the Joseon Era (1392-1894) in Korea with the tale of Yi Geon, who becomes crown prince of the land after his father wrests control of the kingdom through a rebellion.

However, Geon is then kidnapped by none other than Choi Myung-yoon, the woman who is destined to become his wife. While the pair flee for their lives, attraction blossoms between them.

Playing the crown prince is Suho, a member of the K-pop band EXO, who featured in the fantasy romcom Behind Your Touch.

The daring Myung-hoon will be portrayed by Hong Ye-ji, who recently headlined the series Love Song for Illusion. (MBN, April 13)

6. Chief Detective 1958

Lead cast: Lee Je-hoon, Lee Dong-hwi

Lee Je-hoon, star of Taxi Driver, is back as the titular character of the period investigation series Chief Detective 1958.

The series acts as a prequel to the original Chief Detective, one of South Korea’s most popular classic shows, which ran for close to 900 episodes during the 1970s and 80s; the series features in the Bong Joon-ho serial killer classic Memories of Murder.

Lee plays Detective Park Young-han, who busies himself with catching petty criminals with the help of three colleagues. All the while he goes up against corruption on his way to becoming the “detective of the people” he will become known as. (MBC, April 19)

7. Goodbye Earth

Lead cast: Yoo Ah-in, Ahn Eun-jin

7 of The Best Upcoming K-Dramas In April 2024

A still from Goodbye Earth. Photo: Netflix.

Based on the novel The Fool at the End of the World by Japanese author Kotaro Isaka, Goodbye Earth is described as a pre-apocalyptic drama. Its characters grapple with the fact that an asteroid is on a collision course with the Earth in 200 days and nothing can stop it.

The series was originally expected to air last year but was delayed following the legal troubles of embattled actor Yoo Ah-in. Goodbye Earth is the first of Yoo’s completed projects to be released since scandal erupted over his alleged illegal use of an anaesthetic drug. (Netflix, April 26)