More often than not, women in K-dramaland are depicted as beautiful, feminine, soft, fragile, and adorable (cue the aegyo)–the kind you would want to bubble wrap to protect her from harm. As K-dramas (or the entertainment industry, in general) play a pivotal role in shaping society, this portrayal of women has become one of the leading reasons for gender stereotypes and preconceived notions. Fortunately, female roles in Korean productions have evolved in recent years and K-dramas are changing the way they portray female characters.
The days of women waiting around for an oppa in shining armour to come and save them are long gone and we’re here for it. No longer damsels in distress, K-drama female leads are stronger than ever, defying the odds against them, and taking matters into their own hands (quite literally).
1. My Name: Han So-hee as Jiwoo
Han So-hee stars in the action noir series My Name as Jiwoo, a revenge-driven woman looking to avenge her father after he was killed outside of their home. She sacrifices everything to find her father’s killer–including her name. Jiwoo joins the largest crime syndicate in Korea and goes undercover as a police officer in order to find her father’s killer.
To perform the intense action scenes in the series, So-hee dedicated herself to attending action school daily, honing her techniques in not just bare fist fighting, but also combat involving knives, guns, and batons used by the police.
Stream it on Netflix here.