One thing I’ve learned since entering the blogosphere is how possessive us fangirls are. In fact, I was a little disturbed by all these women claiming my men to be theirs. Like, who ARE you, and no, you’re not going to mess with my men. They’re all mine, mine, mine! *Evil laugh* But before I do another post claiming who these men are so you’d know to keep your hands off, here’s a pre-edition featuring actors in various dramas who gave me butterflies in my stomach and made my heart go “dugeun, dugeun.”
I’m not sure whether it was the actors or the characters they played, so let’s just say it’s the actors’ portrayal of their characters. In fact, I don’t claim all these men to be mine, and vice versa, there are other men not listed here who I do claim as mine. So instead, here is a list of men whose drama characters I crushed on in my drama-watching history. Share yours, but at your own risk! If yours include those men who I claim to be mine (a separate post coming), you’ll surely witness Blue’s wrath. Hear me roar~ growl!
Kang Suk Woo (1987) - Kang Suk Woo was the original “pretty boy” and my first official celebrity crush. I don’t remember which drama it was, but the year was 1987. I was sitting around in the living room while playing with my dolls, and I happened to glance up to watch my aunt watching TV. I saw Kang Suk Woo on-screen, and immediately demanded to know who he was because “I plan to marry that man!”
I still remember how upset I felt when he got married in 1990. “Why, why couldn’t he wait for me?!” Mama Blue comforted me, telling me that he was way too old for me and when I grow up, I’ll meet an even better man. Seeing him play father characters in dramas now, I realize how right she was back then, but I still smile whenever I think of my first childhood crush.
Lee Jong Won (Love is Blue, 1994 & Sunny Place of Youth, 1995) - I’ve listed these two dramas because they stand out to me, but you can pretty much say that most of my 90s was spent crushing on this man. At one point, I even made a comment musing about how someone can look so… well, perfect. It still makes me sad to see how time has not been so kind to him, proving to me once again that Korean men DO NOT age well.
Lee Jung Jae (Feelings, 1994 & Sandglass, 1995) – If there’s a scale for your obsessive level, my crush on Lee Jung Jae back then was simply off the chart. I don’t think I’ve ever had as huge of a crush on any celebrity like I did with Lee Jung Jae. Further, he was my longest-lasting crush, lasting a good two years.
How big was my crush on him? I’ve already mentioned that I cried myself to sleep because of his drama character in Sandglass. I once ripped a photo of him from a magazine just to carry it around with me. I declared that I was going to move back to Korea once I finish school, certain that as soon as he laid his eyes on me, he’d see that we were meant to be and it would be game over.
Despite thinking that I’d never “get over” my crush on him, during his long absence for his military service, I gradually realized that I was in fact over him and he no longer had the effect on me that he once did. But one day while watching a TV entertainment program that featured teenage girls crying over the disbandment of an idol group, I made the mistake of making the comment, “Silly girls.” And all my mom had to say was, “Looking who’s talking! Remember your crush on Lee Jung Jae back then?” Yup, that shut me up for good.
Jang Dong Gun & Son Chang Min (Medical Brothers, 1997) – Even though many people consistently vote Jang Dong Gun as the best looking actor in Korea, I disagree. (I think that title belongs to Jung Woo Sung.) But I did love the two brothers in Medical Brothers, although now that I think about it, I might have loved Son Chang Min more than Jang Dong Gun even back then.
Park Jung Chul (Shinhwa, 2001) – It saddens me how Park Jung Chul’s career has stagnated (the last time I checked, he had resorted to doing daily morning dramas), whereas the careers of others in his age group all seemed to have taken off. But Park Jung Chul used to make regular appearances on my desktop wallpaper just a decade ago, with Shinhwa being his greatest performance to date.
Jang Hyuk (Bright Girl’s Success Story, 2002) – There’s a scene in this drama where Jang Hyuk, dressed in a gray suit, dashes out of his red convertible and makes a quick run. I don’t know how many times I’ve rewinded that scene over and over again because of how hot Jang Hyuk looked while running.
Kim Rae Won (Snowman, 2003) – I do like Kim Rae Won, and in fact, I think I’ve liked him in all his dramas so far. But if I had to pick one in which he had me swooning the most, it would have to be his character in Snowman. If I recall, I think he played a hockey player in the drama? There’s a scene where he had Gong Hyo Jin’s character pinned against the wall, and although I would normally frown upon such roughness, I envied her and secretly decided that Kim Rae Won has my permission to pin me against the wall anytime. (Hmm, that didn’t come off right, now did it?) Hated the drama though. Seriously, how could Gong Hyo Jin choose her… umm, brother-in-law over Kim Rae Won?!
Kim Ju Hyuk (Like the River that Flows, 2003) – If there’s one word to describe Kim Ju Hyuk, it would be “maeryuk” (매력). I don’t think he’s exactly handsome or good-looking in the conventional sense, but you just have to see him in action to see what I’m talking about. So I’ll just leave it at that.
Kwon Sang Woo (Into the Sun, 2003 & Stairway to Heaven, 2003-2004) – Okay, I often make fun of his lisp, his affinity for taking off his shirt, and his propensity to continue playing characters much younger than his age. But there was a time when I crushed on him and crushed on him bad. When I confessed it to Bella, she threatened to blackmail me as a good friend she is. So instead, I’ll just confess it to the world to make her blackmail now defunct. But gosh darnit, his body looks really good dressed in a navy officer uniform (like he did in Into the Sun), okay?! Hmph.
Ji Jin Hee (Dae Jang Geum, 2003-2004) – Naeuri! Can I just say how much I love Ji Jin Hee dressed in a traditional Korean garb? His eyes look extremely gentle and extremely playful all at the same time, making Blue go crazy.
Jo In Sung (What Happened in Bali, 2004) – Loved his obsessive, psychopathic, stalkerish antics. Loved his silly backpacks. Loved his long legs. Loved how he wept like a baby, scared of his father and what he may do to the woman he loves. Loved Jo In Sung in this drama.
Park Shin Yang (Lovers in Paris, 2004) – Made me wish that I too can have my own Cinderella story. I absolutely loved all his colorful ties in the drama.
Ji Hyun Woo (Old Miss Diary, 2004-2005) – Ji PD! Okay, I must seriously have a thing for male characters who secretly harbor a crush on a girl, but are inept at expressing their feelings and instead, act out by being mean. (Think Han Kang from 49 Days.) It’s juvenile, but also adorable.
Gong Yoo (Biscuit Teacher and Star Candy, 2005) – Before he became public property due to his fame from Coffee Prince, Gong Yoo was all mine and mine alone. Thankfully, by the time Coffee Prince came along, I was already done with him and did not have the urge to fight the herd of girls claiming him to be theirs. But remember! I had him before y’all!
Lee Dong Wook (My Girl, 2005-2006) – Oh gosh, I loved Seol Gong Chan in My Girl. (Haha, notice how my paragraphs are getting shorter with each new actor? I swear it doesn’t mean I loved them any less. I’m just running out of things to say…)
Chun Jung Myung (What’s Up Fox, 2006) – Chun Jung Myung’s character in What’s Up Fox made me lament on my own life. Why, why don’t I have a cute younger brother of my best friend whose diaper I helped change crushing on me all his life and now declaring his undying love? For sure, my life was in vain!
Lee Bum Soo (Surgeon Bong Dal Hee, 2007) – Okay, this might offend fans of Lee Bum Soo, but again, I think you must admit that he’s not exactly handsome, right? But I think he is living proof that what makes an actor (or any man, for that matter) attractive is not strictly his looks, but how he carries himself. And there’s no doubt about it that Lee Bum Soo’s portrayal of Dr. Ahn Joong Geun was hella sexy!
Song Chang Eui (Golden Bride, 2007-2008) – Wow, he looks HOT in that suit! But I digress. There’s a very boy-next-door charm about Song Chang Eui. For sure he’s a handsome looking man, and unfortunately, I’ve never had any boy next door look like Song. But there’s something very approachable and unassuming about him that I just adore.
And likewise, I just loved how his character in Golden Bride was like any loving husband you’d find around you and wish for yourself, once you get past the whole “I’m suffering from a severe anxiety disorder after getting dumped by my ex-girlfriend and being locked up in a jail cell in Chicago.” (Like, seriously?) All throughout watching this drama, all I could think about was how I wanted to find a hubby like him and grow to be a loving wife like Lee Young Ah’s character.
Kim Hyun Joong (We Got Married, 2008) – Whenever he made any of his 4D comments, I’ve always wondered to myself, “Hmm, is he… serious?!” But he was quite simply endearing as the younger husband to Hwangbo in the “reality” marriage variety program.
Park Shi Hoo (Family Honor, 2008-2009 & Prosecutor Princess, 2010) – Park Shi Hoo always seems to play a character who has that cold, mysterious exterior. There’s a Korean saying, “He looks like like he won’t shed any blood even if you prick him with a needle.” I’ve always thought that that saying was perfectly suited for Park Shi Hoo’s appearance. But when such a character starts getting affected by love, the impact is that much stronger and more powerful.
Lee Min Ho (Boys Over Flowers, 2009) – I first laid my eyes on him and gasped, “Who is THAT?!” Yes, yes, I was part of the BOF’s Gu Jun Pyo groupie. I mused at how seemingly perfect he looks and ooh-ahed at how his lips was in the shape of a heart. I visited his thread daily to look at new photos of him.
Bella called out three months – the length of time it would take before I’d grow tired of him. In fact, to both our surprise, it lasted five months. But before long, I started noticing all his flaws. What is that about quickly lit flames also going out quickly? Oh, how fickle is Blue’s heart!
Cha Seung Won (City Hall, 2009) – I will admit it right now that Cha Seung Won’s looks is far from my personal taste. In fact, as shallow as it may sound, the reason why I did not watch City Hall until just this year was because I did not find Mr. Cha attractive, including his cow-mustache and the cleanly-shaped eyebrows.
But boy, was I wrong! Cha Seung Won oozed of charisma and sex appeal in City Hall, and as weird as it may sound, I felt like I was going to get drunk from the smell of his cologne that seemed to come off through the screen, making me want to do things with him that I never realized I’d want to do with a 40+ year old man. This man just demands for women to throw panties at him.
Jung Kyung Ho (Smile You, 2009-2010) – Sniff, sniff. I miss Hyun Soo! Hmm, I hope Jung Kyung Ho’s doing well in the army…
Kang Hyun Soo is definitely one of my favorite male leads ever. He seems nerdy and dorky at first glance, but he is one of the strongest characters ever – unmoved and unswayed by the difficulties ahead of him. Solid as a rock. By the way, I never realized that a green tracksuit can look so good on anyone until Smile, You.
Lee Seon Kyun (Pasta, 2010) – Chep! I joined this bandwagon rather late. Even when everyone was touting him Mr. Voice, I didn’t really see what was so special about him until Pasta came around. And for that, I will always be grateful. Hmm, I love the way he seems to wear his clothes, as opposed to his clothes wearing him. I love how he doesn’t seem to “try” so hard, but is just “cool” as he is. I love his broad shoulders. I love how one side of his lips goes up when he smiles. (Hey look! he’s doing that in the photo above too!) Reminder to self: “He’s a married man, he’s a married man.”
Park Yong Woo (Jejoongwon, 2010) – Park Yong Woo is just another actor who you just have to see for yourself to realize why he’s so special. But in particular, he was just made to be Hwang Jung, and for having played Hwang Jung, Park Yong Woo will always have a special place in my heart.
His character was far from being refined. He stutters, he speaks slowly, and he has a slight accent when he speaks. But you can’t help but root for him to overcome all the odds against him and succeed. There’s no doubt that he’s an incredible man, disguised as a “nobody”. But his success story made you feel empowered yourself and believe that you too can do anything you’ve set your mind to since Hwang Jung was able to make it as well.
Few episodes in, I was already a goner for Park Yong Woo. But in the scene above when he lifted his hat to reveal his sparkling eyes, my heart literally stopped beating for a few seconds because I felt overwhelmed by how beautiful his eyes looked.
Micky Yoochun (Sungkyunkwan Scandal, 2010) – Anyone who’s been with me since my Sungkyunkwan Scandal craze days will know of my love for Micky’s portrayal of Lee Sun Joon. His always so righteous, proper, and well-spoken character had me swooning from left to right. His voice, his speech, his gaht kiss… Kyahh! Thanks to him, my second-half of 2o10 was simply blissful.
Jo Hyun Jae (49 Days, 2011) - I’ve always considered Jo Hyun Jae to be a good-looking actor, but despite so, I never really cared too much for him in the past. But did the army duty do him good? His portrayal of Han Kang and his love for one woman was just spot on and made my heart go “dugeun, dugeun” for 10 weeks. And every time I see Jo Hyun Jae now, I have this new urge to just shout, “Kang-ah!”
*Note: Please note that this is not necessarily the order that I’ve crushed on these men, as some dramas were watched out of order.