Forbidden Love has always been a point of fascination for those who dabble in literature and art. Previously, it was a genre portrayed either too cautiously or too stereotypically. However, in recent times, writers have been experimenting with unique storylines that keep the yearning, the pining and frustration typical of forbidden love stories while moving away from the convention of mere class differences. Following are 10 Kdramas with unique plots revolving around the theme of forbidden love.
1. The King's Affection
The King's Affection is a Korean Drama starring Park Eunbin and former SF9 member Rowoon. Dire circumstances force the female lead to fill in the position of her twin brother as the Crown Prince of Joseon. As she grows up adapting to a life that is not hers, she comes across Jung Jieun, a scholar who must tutor him on philosophy and morals. Jieun, however, was the first love of the Crown Prince back when she was just an ordinary girl. As both of them start falling in love, the kingdom slowly starts falling apart, requiring the Crown Prince to take on the role of the King. Under these circumstances, it becomes difficult to love and keep the 18-year-long facade.
2. Crash Landing On You
No drama became as explosive in 2019 as Crash Landing on You. This hit Kdrama starring Hyunbin and Son Hyejin gained even more popularity after the actors announced their real-life romantic relationship. The story is about a businesswoman from South Korea who somehow gets swept into the land of North Korea and is found by a military officer there. The officer is initially cold, but there is something soft in him as he lets her stay at his place to hide from dangers that could find her if her identity is revealed. The story is as forbidden as it can get between the two countries, which makes it a fascinating watch for everyone.
3. Something In The Rain
The central theme of Something in the Rain is family drama, but it also creates an aspect of forbidden romance because of the same. The story also has an age gap trope where a woman in her mid-30s who has never been able to love or be loved in the way she deserves finds herself falling in love with the younger brother of her best friend. The story projects prejudices against women, their struggles at a certain age and how easy it is for men to treat them horribly.
Teacher-student relationships have always been some of the most forbidden yet fascinating romances depicted in media. Loveholic is a K-drama where a high school teacher, Yul Joo, and a disobedient student, Kang Wook, fall in love despite it being illegal. However, their love never takes wings because Yul Joo goes to jail for a crime Kang Wook committed under drug influence. Five years later, when he comes out of jail, the right moment has passed, and both have someone else looking out for them.
5. Tree Of Heaven
Tree of Heaven is a drama starring Lee Wan and Park Shinhye which features dark love triangles, tragic pasts and a forbidden love story between step-siblings. When their parents decide to marry each other, Hana and Yunsuh have to accept each other as step-siblings for their sake. Yunsuh, however, is very cold to Hana, who just wants him to open up to her. After much effort, as he becomes more friendly, she realises her feelings for him run deep. Both of them struggle to battle against this attraction and even look into finding comfort in other people. The story is quite intense and raw in its presentation.
6. Secret Love Affair
Secret Love Affair is a 2014 drama that aired for 16 episodes. It is the story of a 20-year-old man who gave up on studying to earn money and the director of an elite art director who decides to give him lessons on the piano, which he could never pursue. Slowly, they end up falling in love against all odds, leading to a forbidden love story involving infidelity. They know about the retribution that could come to them for their relationship, but they cannot hold back.
7. The Moon Embracing The Sun
Moon Embracing the Sun follows the love story between a Crown Prince and a mysterious Shaman named Wol. The story involves a heavy theme of resurrection and family politics as the Shaman, in reality, was once a novel woman. She and the Prince were engaged, but a spell was cast on her to kill her before their wedding. Years later, as the Prince looks into her murder, she emerges into his life again with no memory of her past before the resurrection. Both of them fight to keep the young King from getting overthrown by the Queen's political powers.
8. Angel's Last Mission: Love
If sobbing is your mission, then Angel's Last Mission: Love is the K-Drama for you. The story features Kim Myungsoo and Shin Hyesun, with the former being an angel and the latter a blinded prima ballerina and heiress. The angel is tasked with the job of finding love for the ballerina, who has stopped trusting those around her following the death of her parents and her strange accident. If he can fulfil his mission, the angel can return to heaven. The story is exceptionally moving and will leave you in tears watching the pain of an artist who can no longer practice her art like she used to.
9. Hotel Del Luna
Hotel Del Luna is a hit drama starring IU. She plays the role of the keeper of a hotel that houses all ghosts with unresolved resentments or desires. Their job is to see to it that their issues in the mortal world are resolved before they can be safely assisted to the afterlife. The keeper, Man Wol, however, is cursed and bound to the hotel for eternity, and it is not until she realises what led to her punishment that she can free herself from it. Goo Chansung is a promising assistant manager hired by the hotel because of his father's promise to Man Wol.
10. The Smile Has Left Your Eyes
The Smile Has Left Your Eyes is a drama about a seemingly cold-hearted man who occupies an essential position in a Korean Brewery. However, his life takes a turn when a woman's suicide and eventual death point him as a murder suspect. Conversely, we have a kind-hearted but traumatised advertising designer who wants to protect him from all wrongs. However, her brother seems to be against their love. He is a detective hell-bent on exposing Kim Mooyoung. This makes it difficult for their passion to persist.