Best Korean Medical Dramas to watch

Best Korean Medical Dramas to watch

best Korean medical drama

Best Korean Medical Dramas to watch

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Too bored watching Korean thrillers, romance, and comedy dramas? If so, there is a whole new K-drama genre you should give it a go too, and it is the best Korean medical drama genre. 

The Korean medical dramas are some of the popular and worth watching medical series. They are not only entertaining to watch but may also teach you a thing or two both in real-life issues as well as in the medical environment too. Some of these medical dramas have seen remakes in other countries medical dramas, such as the American Movie Good Doctor (2017), which is a remake of the Korean medical series Good Doctor (2013).

In this article, we will discuss some of the best medical dramas that are popular and exciting to watch. And so, with that said, let’s get started.

1. Hospital Playlist (2020)

hospital playlist the best Korean medical drama
Hospital Playlist

Hospital Playlist (Wise Life series) is currently the best Korean medical drama series and highly rated too in the k-drama entertainment history. This drama is about five friends who attended the same medical school and now working together in one hospital. These five roles are played by Jo Jung-suk, Yoo Yeon-Seok, Jeon Mi-do, Kim Dae-Myung, and Jung Kyung-ho. The five doctors who are now in their 40s have been friends since 1999 the year in which they all joined the same medical school.

This incredible piece of the show was written by Lee Woo-Jung and directed by Shin Won-ho. It first premiered on tvN every Thursday from March 12 to May 28, 2020, but is now available for streaming on Netflix. Following the release of this show’s first season, it got a rave response that triggered the renewal of the second season, which aired between June 17 and September 16, 2021. Surprisingly, episode one of season two recorded the highest tvN’s premiere rating of 10.007%, according to Nielsen Korea.

What’s the most popular medical drama?

2. Dr. Romantic (2016)

Dr. Romantic the best medical Korean drama
Dr. Romantic (2016)

Besides the Hospital Playlist being one of the best medical korean drama series, there is another medical drama series that has got a lot of people talking. Dr. Romantic (2016) is arguably one of the most popular medical dramas as of now, competing with Hospital Playlist for the top spot in terms of popularity. Also, this series is among the best Korean medical romance drama.

Dr. Romantic series is about a triple-board certified surgeon, Boo Yong-Joo (Han Suk-kyu), who disappears and changes his name to Kim Sa-bu after a traumatic incident in his previous job. In fact, Yong-Joo used to work in Seoul’s top medical center and was at the top of his field. He then moved to Gangwon Province, where he began working at Doldam, which is a small hospital.

So, what is this medical drama about, and what makes the best Korean medical drama?

First of all, it is important to note that this show is one of the most beloved medical K-dramas. And besides being popular, it is also one of the best medical dramas out there. It features meticulous script writing that effortlessly captures peoples’ attention and gets them hooked to the show. The plot is strong and entertaining, even though it may feature some hard-to-understand medical terms.

Apart from a strong and entertaining storyline, this show does feature likable characters who are cleverly chosen to fit their roles. Their different qualities and flaws make them uniquely amazing, inspiring unbelievable affection from fans.

What medical drama should I watch?

Good question!

Currently, there are a ton of k-drama best Korean medical drama series that have been produced. And so, choosing the best series to watch can be a hectic task. Therefore, to help with that, here are the best and binge-watch worthy series that you can watch alone or with friends:

3. Good Doctor (2013)

Good Doctor (2013) one of the best Korean medical drama series
Good Doctor (2013)

Besides the first two medical dramas mentioned above (Dr. Romantic and Hospital playlist), The Good Doctor (2013) is also another must-watch medical drama. This show is starred by non-other than the great Joo Won the Fashion King star who plays the role of Park Si-on, an autistic savant who becomes a doctor.

Park Si-On has detailed memory and spatial skills despite being an autistic savant. Additionally, despite his brilliant skill as a surgeon as well as incredible photographic memory, he struggles with bedside manners. Also, due to his autism and emotional capabilities, he has a hard time proving his worth to other doctors after joining the hospital as a pediatric surgery doctor. Given 6 months to prove himself, he starts falling in love with Yoon-seo making the odds against him even more than it was. 

The other lovely part of this show is the Yoon-Seo story and stylish looks. She resembles ko mun yeong actress with a somewhat ko mun yeong outfits vibe.

This Korean medical drama performed well that it even inspired a remake of the American version with the same name in 2017. And so, if you haven’t watched the original Good Doctor k-drama version, be sure the stream it today on Netflix.  

4. Hospital Ship (2017)

Hospital Ship one of the best best Korean medical drama
Hospital Ship

This medical drama is somewhat unique in its own way. It’s about a group of young doctors providing medical services to people in rural places on small islands. Their hospital is built on a ship, and the team comprises different individuals with different personalities, qualities, and skillsets. This show is thrilling and super entertaining to binge-watch.

Each doctor in this team of 4 doctors specializes in different medical disciplines. It is a mix of capable individuals and comprises of a dentist (Cha Joon-young), a beautiful woman surgeon (Song Eun-Jae), an oriental doctor (Kim Jae-gol), and a doctor (Kwak Hyun) who joins this team as part of military service. They focus on offering medical services and treating patients on islands on each island they visit.  

And so, if you’re a K-Drama enthusiast, this is a must-watch drama.

5. D-Day (2015)

D-Day the best korean medical romance drama
D-Day (2015)

Here is another entertaining, fictional and best Korean medical drama that topped the charts in 2015. This drama is about Lee Hae-sung, a top surgeon who was transferred after disobeying his previous hospital director, Park Gun. He was moved from the best hospitals in Seoul to a less known rundown hospital with no emergency room (ER).

The major storyline about this drama is how the two doctors Lee and Jung Ddol-Mi, an orthopedic resident, deals with a natural disaster that befalls Seoul. Following an earthquake, a sinkhole appears in the city, blocking access to the city, meaning they are stuck in Seoul. And to make it even worse, electricity, phones, and water stopped working moments after the disaster. Therefore, Lee and Jung started treating the people trapped in that zone.

The D-Day TV series features 20 episodes and is now available for streaming on Netflix. Check it out to know what happens once the medicine starts to run out. Notably, this show is among the best Korean medical romance drama.

6. Doctor John (2019)

Lee-Se-Young and Ji-Sung in Doctor John Korean drama
Lee-Se-Young and Ji-Sung in Doctor John

Doctor John is a fictional medical drama about top anesthesiologist Cha Yo-han (Ji Sung), who comes of as a cold and rude individual. This drama is super lovely. Everything about this drama is likable, from the leading cast chemistry to a well-defined plot. This a just a few features of what makes it one of the best Korean medical drama shows.

This drama is ideally one of the most educative and realistic to watch. It teaches you a lot, makes you realize the pain a person may really be going through during such moments. Additionally, it also helps you understand that death is inevitable. By watching this series, you can note that staying by the side of a person in a great deal of pain will help ease their pain in a way you will not explain nor understand.

The greatest lesson you can take from this drama is, “we could never say we do really understand their pain until we feel it ourselves.”

The show features 16 Episodes, and it is now available for streaming on Netflix.

7. Soul Mechanic

Soul mechanic is another top best k-drama that’s worth watching. the funny part is that this drama is not a psychiatric drama, but there is a drama in which the main character, Go Won-young, shows antisocial personality disorder.

Why do people like the medical series?

best Korean medical drama
Doctor John and Lee se Young

There are lots of vast reasons why many people like medical k-drama, but I’m going to touch on a few reasons here.

First of all, all k-dramas are well-researched shows, as shown by their well-defined deep plots. While watching each episode, they ooze an absolutely perfect amount of thrill and tension that keeps you entertained.

Also, the progressive flow of almost each and every medical series is 8/10, if not 10/10. The starting and ending of tales, the chemistry, the relationship between characters, and the turn of events are hilarious to watch.

Medical dramas, just like any other k-dramas, are well-curated shows that are delightful and must-watch. This is simply because of the way the story unfolds itself and a hint of romance, which adds an element of nosiness to the viewer.

Overall, the key feature to their likeability is how realistic they seem to be. How Korean medical series deliver medical emergencies/procedures is so realistic and amazing to watch. You can binge-watch them to ‘death’ – that is how good they are.

Why are medical dramas so popular?

Medical series
The cast of the Hospital Playlist K-drama series

Medical-based dramas’ popularity is ideally and mainly linked to their intriguing stories. In fact, medical dramas are usually considered the main source of stories and intrigue, which is why they are prevalent nowadays.

According to the Royal Society of Medicine’s psychiatry section president, Prof George Ikkos says it is more to do with learning about ourselves from other people. Realistically, it is dramatic and exciting to watch programs like a casualty. This is simply because it involves people like us that we can easily and directly relate to. Prof George Ikkos even noted that “watching medical dramas are not like watching something related to nuclear physics or stamp collecting.”

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