How Lee Min Ho Has Been Gifting Fans With K-Drama Boyfriends That Magically Cures Stress Every Time
Chances are that among the all-time favorite K-Drama picks from fans, a work from Lee Min Ho is normally (definitely) included.
That is expected given how the actor has never looked back since he broke mainstream success with Boys Over Flowers.
Adored by fans, Lee Min Ho has been returning the love he is getting through memorable projects in the last 10 years. As one of the most sought after Korean actors, he has an impressive portfolio of top-rating and popular series. In fact, his last six dramas had all hit double-digit average viewership rating, a feat that is rarely achieved by lead actors.
Additionally, he is one of the few actors who has won year-end drama awards given by the three biggest South Korean networks. Moreover, he usually pairs up with top actresses in a wide variety of roles and genres that cater to different audiences.
Something about Lee Min Ho dramas always call for some hot choco, warm blanket and me-time. From youth-oriented dramas to stories that career people can enjoy, he has been one of the very few actors with uncanny ability in giving justice to his roles.
Today, let’s take a trip to how the actor has perfectly captured fictional boyfriends that never fail to cheer us up every time when we need a therapeutic K-Drama binge.
Here it is… Lee Min Ho’s all-flavored sweet and healing drama beans.
K-Dramaland’s boy crush
Appearing on school and youth dramas is a rite of passage for Korean actors. Lee Min Ho is no exception having started bit and supporting roles in a slew of dramas taking student characters. Among the school dramas he appeared in, he had shaped the defining roles that opened opportunities for him as an actor.
Gu Jun Pyo in Boys Over Flowers
Lee Min Ho’s breakout performance in Boys Over Flowers propelled him to stardom. The shojo manga based series has been adapted in films and television in Japan, China and Taiwan. While the latter is popular to middle-aged Asian drama aficionados, the Korean version has won the hearts of younger generation of fans in its own way.
At the time of its airing, such was the online fame of the series. Averaging 25.7% nationwide viewership, it inevitably became a household favorite in Korea and overseas.
When watched in the perspective of teens, Gu Jun Pyo is a heart-fluttering feast. Flash forward to three or more years since you last saw him, and you’d be surprised in a nostalgic attack. Like he found a way to stay in your system, albeit fictional, he somewhat left an imprint like how the boy you first loved in real life does.
Kim Tan in The Heirs
Four years after the celebrated success of Boys Over Flowers, then 26-year old Lee surprised fans by picking a high school character role. His first collaboration with star writer Kim Eun Sook went on to become another hit series, averaging 16.7% nationwide viewership rating based on Nielsen.
The star-studded youth drama which depicted the struggles of children raised from uber rich families were represented by rising actors, who at present, have also successfully established their respective career as the most bankable actors at present. To recap, Kim Woo Bin, Kim Ji Won, Kang Ha Neul, and Park Hyung Sik are some of the cast members from The Heirs.
As Kim Tan, Lee Min Ho portrayed the second son of a chaebol family, who fell in love with the daughter of their housekeeper. Pairing up with Park Shin Hye, the actor made audience empathize to his rich-yet-lonely-life. At the same time, his swoon-worthy moments, of chasing after the girl who suited his heart well but did not fit in to his social status, were also a sweet delightful watch.
The actor who persevered with Career Defining Roles
Diligently working to dig deeper on his depth as an actor, it was no easy task for Lee Min Ho to transition in roles that would show otherwise – he is more than a handsome face. With that, he challenged interesting characters that would make him work on his craft even more.
Yoon Sung in City Hunter
Owning his City Hunter role well, his first action-drama film generated another widespread following. It scored an average of 16%, effectively becoming another top-rating SBS drama in 2011.
Showcasing his stage combat skills, Lee endeared fans when he switched with the character’s humor. The emotional confrontation scenes with veteran actor Kim Sang Joong, who portrayed his foster father in the series, nostalgically proved how he has grown so much as an actor through the years. Adding to that, his on-screen chemistry with Park Min Young yielded solid support from K-Drama fandom.
Choi Young in Faith
For his first historical drama, Lee Min Ho played the role of the King’s most trusted general. Starring opposite seasoned actress Kim Hee Sun, the Song Ji Na written drama was also his first foray to fantasy-themed series.
Portraying Choi Young, Lee’s manly charisma overflows while sustaining the authentic appeal of historical drama. It effectively engaged the audience with the slow burning yet lingering aftermath of the emotions of the love pairing. The SBS series is one drama you can watch at different age perspective, and still feels the gravitating pull of its romantic elements.
Hallyu’s favorite leading man
Following the continuous success of his dramas, Lee Min Ho strengthened his leading man status. Working with South Korea’s top actresses, the generous artist included trendy but well-written treats for his fans.
Jeon Jin Ho in Personal Taste
The pressure was then high for Lee’s post-Boys-Over-Flowers drama. He did not disappoint and went on to appear opposite popular actress Son Ye Jin. Personal Taste signaled the actor’s shift to more mature roles. In the drama, he suited up as an architect, who ended up on a cohabitation contract with a clumsy furniture maker.
Even with Son’s five-year seniority, Lee hardworkingly worked his way to match the seasoned skills of the top actress. Thereby, proving his inescapable fate on becoming one of the most versatile actors.
Heo Joon Jae in The Legend of the Blue Sea
After venturing in two films Gangnam Blues and Bounty Hunters, Lee Min Ho broke his three-year small screen hiatus, with anticipated love pairing with Jun Ji Hyun in 2017.
Threading on a fantasy-romance premise, Lee owned the role of mischievous con-man Heo Joon Jae, who fell in love with a mermaid. Their time-transcending romance rated high scores and generated impressive online raves. Along with that, like his other dramas, the series was released in multiple territories overseas.
Gearing up for his small screen comeback after completing military service, Lee is set to reunite with writer Kim Eun Sook. Through historical-fantasy series The King: The Eternal Monarch, he will next challenge dual roles in the ambitious parallel-world themed series. Eyeing early 2020 broadcast date, the actor will pair up with actress Kim Go Eun, who is most well-known for her lead role as Ji Eun Tak in tvN’s phenomenal hit Goblin starring opposite Gong Yoo.
[Photo Credits: KBS2, SBS, MBC]
ABOUT THE WRITER
abbyinhallyuland reads and sleeps a lot when she is not traveling. Her calendar reminders are mostly K-Drama broadcast schedules and birthdays of her favorite Korean actors. Promoting K-Drama watching as stress therapy is her life advocacy. She is fond of Spencer Reid, Gregory House, Kenshin Himura, Starwars saga, Haruki Murakami and Hunter x Hunter.
Recommended Korean Dramas: Reply 1988, Nine, Misaeng, Gaksital, Discovery of Love, Because This is My First Life, Descendants of the Sun, My Love from the Star, Healer, Punch, You’re Beautiful, Coffee Prince, Princess Hours, The Greatest Love, Sungkyunkwan Scandal, City Hunter, and The Smile Has Left Your Eyes.