Article: Top 10 K-Dramas With “Roommates-To-Lovers” Tropes

The Korean entertainment industry has the ability to hit the right spot with its romance drama. While romance as a genre is often seen as unrealistic and monotonous, this isn’t the case with romance K-dramas. Tens of Korean dramas are released each year, and each content puts a unique spin on the romance genre. In this genre of K-dramas, the “roommates to lovers” trope has become insanely popular. The forced proximity, awkward encounters, and the slow blossoming of love make any content top-notch. This trope masterfully showcases the highs and lows of relationships that develop under a peculiar housing arrangement. Below we have compiled a list of the top 10 K-dramas featuring the “roommates to lovers” trope!

1. Personal Taste

Son Ye Jin and Lee Min Ho do-star in this drama, what other incentive might one need to give this drama a shot? Personal Taste is one of the “old is gold” dramas of the Hallyu industry, which will leave you in stitches while laughing. Unlucky in love furniture designer Park Kae In roommates with architect Jeon Jin Ho, who she presumes is gay (spoiler alert, he is not.). As Jin Ho helps Kae In gain confidence and find her footing, the two start having feelings for each other.  If one were to describe this drama using adjectives, those words would be “chaotic” and “humorous”.

2. My Roommate Is A Gumiho

In this drama, a 999-year-old Gumiho (mythological nine-tailed fox) and a college student weave through a peculiar living arrangement amid humorous situations. Jang Ki Yong and Lee He Ri star in this drama. Based on the webtoon of the same name, My Roommate is a Gumiho tells the story of Shin Woo Yeo (who is, of course, the Gumiho) who while searching for his “fox bead”, finds it in the possession of college student Lee Dam, who accidentally swallowed it. A temporary roommate arrangement ensues as Woo Yeo tries to get his bead back from Dam before it harms her. This is the perfect romance K-drama to watch if you love supernatural romance tropes.

3. So I Married An Anti-Fan

Forced Proximity and roomies-to-lovers tropes collide in So I Married An Anti-Fan.” Choi Tae Joon portrays the role of an arrogant and conceited film star named Hoo Joon. Magazine Reporter Lee Geun Young becomes Hoon’s no. 1 “anti-fan” after a series of unfortunate mishaps with the star. Still seething and full of negative feelings for the star, Geun Young becomes part of a reality TV series, where she has to room with Hoo Joon. Some difficulty ensues as the star and his anti-far live in close quarters, but circumstances change as Joon and Geun Young fall for each other.

4. The Secret Romantic Guesthouse

While roommates to lovers is a subtle idea in his saguek drama, it does have some similar elements to that trope. The Secret Romantic Guesthouse is a comedy romance series that centers around a woman who runs a lodge called Ihwawon Inn in the village. The lodge is frequently occupied by young men preparing for the civil servant entrance exams. The inn owner Yoon Dan Oh along with three inn guests band together to solve a mysterious event that happened 13 years ago. This drama features a stellar cast, quirky banter, and romantic trysts with a hint of mystery.

5. Doom At Your Service

Doom At Your Service offers a unique touch to the same ol’ roommate to lovers trope. The drama has a melancholy tone to it but perfectly balances it with the emotional and sensual aspect of love. Tak Dong Kyung, who has cancer and is dying, drunkenly wishes for the end of the end. Her wish comes true when Doom personified being Myul Mang comes into her life. A 100-day deal between them, where the two live with each other, ends with them falling for each other. Doom at Your Service features incredible cinematography and beautiful soundtracks, and the chemistry between the leads is stellar.

6. Oh! My Ladylord

Two individuals with opposite viewpoints on love, a woman who is unable to love and a man who doesn’t believe in love, fall for each other under peculiar living circumstances. Actress Nana portrays the role of a top actress named Oh Joon In, while actor Lee Min Ki plays the role of a scriptwriter Han Bi Soo. The drama explores the themes of loss and love. The series is praised for the great chemistry between the leads, as well as the witty banter and heartfelt moments.

7. Full House

If you love the “marriage of convenience” trope which ends up with the couples living together, then Full House should be at the top of your watchlist. The series stars Song Hye-kyo, Rain, Han Eun-jung, and Kim Sung Soo. Full House was megastar Hye Kyo’s earlier projects, and her youthful and cheerful is fully showcased in the drama. The plot revolves around Han Ji Eun, whose house is sold without her permission. To take her house back, she enters into a contract marriage with her house’s new owner, Lee Young Jae. A love-hate blossoms between them as the two individuals are forced to be in close quarters under a peculiar situation.

8. Goblin

This cult classic drama needs no introduction. Goblin is a drama that is jam-packed with tropes and typical plotlines, be it living under one roof, humorous banter, bromance, or a tragically beautiful love story. It has great storytelling, supernatural elements, and a theme of the inevitability of fate. Kim Go Eun, Lee Dong Wook, Yoo In Na, and Yook Sung Jae star in this drama.

9. Shopping King Louie

Shopping King Louie is a romantic comedy-drama that tells the story of a wealthy heir Kang Ji Sung (aka Louie), a spendthrift who loses his memory. Penniless with no one to rely on, Ji Sung starts living on the street. He is found by a charismatic woman named Bok Sil, a countryside dweller, who takes Louie under her wing. While learning things like money management and maintaining a thrifty lifestyle from Bok Sil, Louie ends up falling for her. Shopping King Louie has quite a few funny moments that will have you in stitches, and the character development Louie goes through is a delight to watch.

10. Playful Kiss

A young girl after being rejected by her crush ends up living at his house in this romantic comedy. Featuring Kim Hyun Joong and Jung So Min in the main roles, Playful Kiss explores the life of Oh Ha Ni as it goes from one rollercoaster to another. Following an accident, Oh Ha Ni and his father start living at a family friend’s house, which is coincidentally the house of the guy who rejected her, Baek Seung Jo. Their personality clashes at first but as they get to know each other, a genuine romantic connection develops between the two.