We are introducing our monthly buzzworthy Korean drama ranking! The ranking is a list of the most talked about Korean dramas in a certain period (based on reports from Good Data Corporation), which are determined by analyzing people’s responses and reactions about the dramas through online news, blogs, communities, videos, social media posts, etc. Take note that it is different from a TV ratings-based ranking, and thus it is possible for low-rated Korean dramas to be on top of the list or for high-rated series to not even make it to the top 10. (In case you’re still confused about what this ranking is all about, here’s the definition of “buzzworthy” according to Merriam-Webster’s dictionary: interesting in a way that attracts or deserves widespread talk or attention.)
For the month of April, terrestrial and cable dramas have equal number of representatives to the top 10 which is dominated by KBS2 and tvN. The two networks have 3 dramas each that made it to the list. Meanwhile, 6 out of the 10 spots are occupied by non-weekend series. At least 19 Korean dramas were included in the analysis.
10. Beautiful World
Beautiful World started off with a third place finish in the first week of April, the highest rank achieved by a JTBC drama last month. It then dropped by seven places in the second week and was completely eliminated from the top 10 thereafter. However, the series still managed to beat other dramas and appeared in the monthly ranking. Starring Choo Ja-hyun, Park Hee-soon, and Nam Da-reum, Beautiful World is a melodrama about a family struggling to uncover the truth behind a school incident that almost killed their son.
9. Mother of Mine
Mother of Mine would have always made it the weekly top 10 if it weren’t for its eleventh place finish in the second week. Its performance is still good overall, especially since it moved up four places in the second half of the month. Starring Kim Hae-sook and Kim So-yeon, the series focuses on the relationship between a single mother and her three daughters and deals with the social and family issues that discourage women to get married.
Confession is the 8th most buzzworthy Korean drama in April. It is a legal thriller headlined by Lee Joon-ho and Yoo Jae-mung, with a story that centers on a man who has become a lawyer in the hope that he could clear the name of his father who is on death row for a crime he did not commit. The series was directed by Kim Cheol-kyu, the PD behind On The Way To The Airport, Chicago Typewriter, and the award-winning melodrama Mother (Best Drama, 54th Baeksang Arts Awards)
7. My Fellow Citizens
My Fellow Citizens claimed the second place in the first week but failed to retain this position thereafter. It is a comedy about a con artist whose life becomes more complicated than ever before when he ties the knot with a police detective and he is forced to run for a seat in the National Assembly. Choi Si-won, Lee Yoo-young, and Kim Min-jung are starring in the drama.
6. Welcome To Waikiki 2
Welcome To Waikiki 2 is the 6th placer with an average score or “buzz” of almost 5%. It occupied the 5th and 6th places until the third week before it got eliminated from the top 10 in the last week. The comedy revolves around the daily life of a group of friends who live together in the guesthouse of Waikiki, which they are also trying to save from bankruptcy in an effort to generate an income that could help them realize their respective ambitions. The lead actors are Lee Yi-kyung, Kim Sun-ho, and Shin Hyun-soo.
5. He Is Psychometric
He Is Psychometric first landed on the seventh place and managed to climb two places a week after. It then remained as the 5th most buzzworthy Korean drama until the end of the month. The series, which is headlined by
Park Jin-young and Shin Ye-eun, is a supernatural thriller about a young man who can read people’s past by simply touching them or their belongings.
4. Doctor Prisoner
Doctor Prisoner consistently came in fourth in the weekly rankings. With an average “buzz” of 6.3%, it sure was a hot topic last month among the netizens. Namgoong Min and Kwon Na-ra are headlining the medical drama, about a passionate doctor who unfairly loses his job at a renowned hospital and subsequently seeks revenge against the people who have ousted him by working at a prison’s health clinic and making connections with high-profile inmates there.
3. Special Labor Inspector
Special Labor Inspector is the only MBC drama on the list. Just like Doctor Prisoner, it stayed at its initial position throughout the month, at no. 3. Starring Kim Dong-wook and Park Se-young, the drama centers on a righteous judo-player-turned-labor-inspector who has promised to lead a normal and quiet life but ends up living the opposite upon seeing the prevalent corruption in his workplace.
2. Her Private Life
Her Private Life enjoyed a sixth place finish in the week preceding its premiere and climbed 4 places in the second week of April. It maintained its position until the last week and got an average “buzz” of 10.1%. The romantic comedy is about a woman who leads a dual life as professional art curator by day and a fangirl by night. It stars Park Min-young and Kim Jae-wook.
1. The Fiery Priest
The Fiery Priest is the most buzzworthy Korean drama in April with a consistent first place finish until it ended on the third week. With a peak and an average buzz of 28.3% and 22.1%, it sure was the subject of hundreds of online discussions and comments. The series also obtained a record viewership during its finale, making it a very popular Korean drama both in terms of TV ratings and “buzz.” It tells the story of a hot-tempered priest who teams up with a slow-witted detective and a headstrong prosecutor to solve a murder case.
Some Notes on Methodology
First, we compiled the weekly buzzworthy drama rankings that are available on Good Data Corporation’s website. Our own monthly ranking is composite in nature and we emphasize the weekly relative rank/position of each drama more than its actual score or “buzz” mainly due to the limited data that are available for computations. We simply took the average of the weekly rankings and created the list above based on the resulting numbers. In case of a tie or a very close difference in rankings, we took the average buzz into account and determined the final rankings accordingly. For more details about the methodology, you can reach us through [email protected]