8 Must-Watch K-Dramas From 2016

Whether you are a new or veteran fan of K-Dramas, chances are the show you’ve watched at least more than once is from 2016. Why? 2016 was an absolutely amazing year for K-Dramas. From grim reapers to mermaids, first loves to worst loves, alternate worlds to historical eras, and more, viewers were given characters and stories to escape reality. Not to mention the number of K-Dramas produced that year that ranked above 3% on the nationwide average TV ratings from Nielsen Korea is enough to keep you binge-watching for the next few months at least.
Here are the 8 must-watch K-Dramas from 2016.

1. Descendants of the Sun

Kang Mo Yeon (Song Hye Kyo) is a cardiothoracic surgeon at Haesung Hospital whose life is forever changed when she meets Yoo Shi Jin (Song Joong Ki), the Captain and team leader of Alpha Team (a special forces unit) whose rule is to protect beauties, elders and children, even if it goes against the order of his superiors. 

Stars: Song Joong Ki, Song Hye Kyo, Kim Ji Won, and Jin Goo
Where to Watch: Viki & Hulu


2. The K2

Kim Je Ha (Ji Chang Wook) is a former mercenary soldier who is framed for the murder of his lover while in Iraq. Now a fugitive, he returns to Korea and becomes a bodyguard for Choi Yoo Jin (Song Yoon Ah) and her step-daughter Go An Ha (Im Yoon Ah), in exchange for resources he needs in order to get revenge on the man who previously ordered the killing of his lover.

Stars: Ji Chang Wook, Im Yoon Ah, Song Yoon Ah, and Jo Sung Ha
Where to Watch: Viki & Netflix


3. Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo

During a total solar eclipse, 25-year-old Go Ha Jin (IU) is transported back in time to the Goryeo Dynasty under King Taejo’s rule. She wakes up in the body of 16-year-old Hae Soo among many royal princes. She finds herself caught up in palace politics and rivalries for the throne as she falls for the 8th Prince Wang Wook (Kang Ha-neul), and later Wang So (Lee Joon Gi), the fearsome 4th Prince. 

Stars: Lee Joon  Gi, IU, Kang Ha Neul, and Hong Jong Hyun
Where to Watch: Viki


4. Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo

Kim Bok Joo (Lee Sung Kyung), is a young woman chasing her dream of weightlifting on a professional scale at an athlete college campus. When she develops a crush on her friend and swimmer Jung Joon-Hyung’s (Nam Joo-Hyuk) older brother, Jung Jae-Yi (Lee Jae-Yoon), Joon Hyung teases her, helps her, and eventually falls in love with her himself.

Stars: Lee Sung Kyung, Nam Joo Hyuk, Lee Jae Yoon, and Kyung Soo Jin
Where to Watch: Viki


5. Goblin (Guardian: The Lonely & Greart God)

Kim Shin (Goo Yoo) was once an unbeatable general in Goryeo’s military who was framed and killed by the young king. Cursed by the Almighty, he becomes an immortal goblin, helping people with his powers while grieving his own past. In the present day, Goblin is summoned by Ji Eun Tak (King Go Eun), an upbeat high school that can see and hears the whispers of ghosts thanks to her tragic past.

Stars: Gong Yoo, Kim Go Eun, Lee Dong Wook, Yoo In Na, and Yook Sung Jae
Where to Watch: Viki


6. Legend of the Blue Sea

During the Joseon Dynasty, mermaid Shim Chung (Jun Ji Hyun) falls in love with newly appointed governor Kim Ryung, (Lee Min Ho) after he releases her back into the ocean. In the present day, Shim Chung runs into Ryung’s modern doppelgänger, Heo Joon Jae, a smooth-talking conman with his eye on Shim Chung’s $6 million jade bracelet. After following him back to Seoul, Shim Chung is taken in by Joon Jae and his con partners, Jo Nam Doo (Lee Hee Joon, and Tae Oh (Shin Won Ho) as they hide from vengeful victims and unsuspecting hitmen sent to kill Joon Jae.

Stars: Lee Min Ho, Jun Ji Hyun, Lee Hee Joon, and Shin Won Ho
Where to Watch: Viki & Hulu

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7. W (W: Worlds Apart)

Oh Yeon Joo (Han Hyo Joo) lives in the real world. She is a second-year cardiothoracic surgeon, the daughter of the super-popular webcomic “W,” and a huge fan of the webcomic’s main lead Kang Chul (Lee Jong Suk). Kang Chul is a webtoon character. He is a former Olympic gold medalist and self-made millionaire who was wrongly accused of murdering his family. The two become intertwined in life and love when Yeon Joo’s father decides to end the webcomic series by killing off Kang Chul. 

Stars: Lee Jong Suk, Han Hyo Joo, Jung Eugene, and Lee Tae Hwan
Where to Watch: Viki


8. Cheese in the Trap

After taking some time off to make money for tuition, hardworking, Hong Seol (Kim Go Eun), returns to college and after a series of unfortunate run-ins gets on the wrong side of her deceptively kind senior, Yoo Jung (Park Hae Jin). After months of her friends running interferences, Jung unexpectedly invites Seol on a date, beginning their awkward relationship that only gets further complicated by the arrival of former childhood friend Baek In Ho (Seo Kang Joon) and his sister In Ha (Lee Sung Kyung). 

Stars: Park Hae Jin, Kim Go Eun, Seo Kang Joon, and Lee Sung Kyung
Where to Watch: Viki & Netflix


Which of these 2016 K-dramas is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below!

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