Love triangles in K-dramas are one of the biggest tropes in the genre and sometimes the main source of the drama in the series. In almost every K-drama, there is a new character who comes in, even if it’s for one episode, to confess their love to one of the main characters, causing drama before they disappear again.
But in many K-dramas, the drama surrounds the idea that viewers don’t really know who the main character is going to end up with or which of the two love interests is better suited for the main character. Here are some of the best love triangles in K-dramas.
Updated on November 21st, 2020 by Gabriela Silva: Love triangles in dramas add a level of suspense, intrigue, and anticipation. Two characters fight for the love and attention of the main character. K-dramas have a way of nailing this theme. It’s a tug and war of the heart when it comes to the moment the main character realizes their true feelings. For fans looking for this type of drama, there are more than enough popular shows to get hooked on.
The supernatural/fantasy show Black is a peculiar type of love triangle. The main female character has the ability to see someone’s death. She becomes the lackey to a grim reaper who possessed a body to get back his rogue assistant.
Along the way, she starts to make him feel human emotions which are forbidden. She also starts to feel a certain way towards him. But intermixed is a young CEO who trusts her abilities and helps her. He develops feelings of his own but sees she might be in love with someone else.
14 Boys Over Flowers
Boys Over Flowers is a popular K-drama from 2009 that still manages to make viewers’ hearts leap over the riveting love triangle. Based on a Japanese manga, it follows a young woman who gets mixed into the wealthy lives of a group of young men at school.
Feelings and interactions blossom between the main female character and the boys. But out of all of them, there’s one that she has an undeniable connection to. But will they make it in the end?
13 Record Of Youth
Record of Youth is a Netflix K-drama that will intrigue fans mostly for the love triangle. A talented makeup artist has a crush on a lesser-known male model. She gets the opportunity to do his makeup for a show and sparks a friendship. It soon turns into a relationship.
There’s one problem. The model turned actor, also has a childhood friend who’s at the top of their careers. The friend also becomes smitten with her. There are moments where fans will question whose the better fit for her.
12 She Was Pretty
She Was Pretty is a K-drama that will have viewers dying of laughter while also having their hearts ache from the romance. It all started when she backed out of meeting her childhood friend due to him becoming gorgeous and her inheriting her father’s frizzy hair and red cheeks.
She instead forces her best friend to take her place. The female character is given a new job by accident at a fashion magazine. She then discovers the childhood friend to be the new editor of the magazine, hence her new boss. But two love triangles occur. Another staff member starts to fall in love with her just as her boss starts to remember who she is. All the while, her best friend who pretended to be her at the first meeting, starts to fall for the childhood friend.
11 Cinderella and Her Four Knights
This K-drama arguably has the most complicated love triangle to appear on television. It’s not a love triangle but a love quadrangle. A hopeful high school senior is forced to take up many part-time jobs to pay for college. She meets an old man who convinces her to move into his home.
She finds herself living with four billionaire cousins all equally handsome. Hence begins the complicated love drama as each of the cousins starts to develop feelings for her. She’s in a pickle for a majority of the series until she comes to terms with who she really loves.
10 Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo
Kim Bok Joo and Jung Joon Hyung had been childhood friends, went to the same school, and even saved each others’ lives within the first episode. The only issue was that Kim Bok Joo was in love with Jung Joon Hyung’s older brother, who was a doctor.
This love triangle was cute and innocent, as Bok Joo seemed to have a naive crush on the doctor who did not reciprocate her feelings. Instead of making a move on Bok Joo before she got over her crush, Joon Hyung comforted her through her first heartbreak, became best friends with her, and later confessed his feelings.
9 Romance Is A Bonus Book
Romance is a Bonus Book features more of a love square than a love triangle, and each member of the square ends up happy in an adorable couple by the end.
Kang Dan I is best friends with Chan Eun Ho and has been in love with her for years and years. But this author and editor is pretty popular with the ladies himself and has had a casual fling with his coworker, Song Hye Rin before he found out that Dan I was single and homeless. To add even more drama, famed book cover artist, Ji Seo Joon, also liked Dan I and was attempting to win her over, as well.
8 Love Alarm
This drama, based on a popular webtoon, features a fairly complex love triangle that raised a lot of eyebrows. Lee Hye Yeong is in love with Kim Jo Jo and has been for some time now. He wants to confess to her but also enjoys just watching and helping her from afar, acknowledging that he doesn’t want to make her life messy. However, everything changes when Hye Yeong’s best friend comes back and learns about his crush.
Hwang Sun Oh sees that Hye Yeong is crushing on Jo Jo and encourages him to tell her, but all the while he begins falling for her too. Because Sun Oh is more open about his feelings, he kisses Jo Jo, sparks immediately begin to fly, and the two begin dating shortly after, all the while with Jo Jo still not knowing that Hye Yeong had feelings for her. The season ended with fans unsure of who she would choose. Both boys are still very much in love with her, but the situation has got even more complicated.
Heirs, much like Boys Over Flowers, is an iconic drama that features a love triangle that had fans rooting for both of the boys. Cha Eun Sang was a normal girl who got to attend a super-rich school. Her main love interest, Kim Tan, loved her a lot and tried to help her fit in, but it didn’t always work out so well.
Enter: total bad boy and jerk (with a big heart), Choi Young Do. Young Do was Tan’s closest friend before they had a big fall out. Initially, he tried getting close to Eun Sang to get revenge on Tan, but over time, he developed genuine feelings for her and comforted her in times when Tan couldn’t understand.
6 Hwarang: The Poet Warrior Of Youth
Hwarang is a bit more of a confusing (albeit disturbing) love triangle. Ah Ro meets Moo Myung, who pretends to be her long lost brother who actually passed away within the first episode. Moo Myung and Ah Ro’s brother were close friends, and Moo Myung swore to protect her before the brother died.
Around the same time, Ah Ro meets the young king Sam Maek Jong, who loves how feisty and stubborn she is. Things get complicated and weird when Moo Myung and Ah Ro start developing feelings for each other. Ah Ro thinks she is in love with her brother and tries to block out her emotions. Eventually, she learns the truth and chooses which boy she likes more.
5 Oh My Ghost
Oh My Ghost is another complicated love triangle due to its number of layers within its plot. Na Bong Sun is a super shy and quiet chef who can see ghosts. She isn’t too noticeable to her boss, Kang Sun Woo, who she has a crush on. That all changes when the loud, flirty, and eccentric ghost of Soon Ae possesses her body.
This love triangle gets confusing because viewers never really know which girl Sun Woo likes until the ending. The girls switch places pretty often and, over time, Bong Sun opens up and becomes more like the ghost within her. To make matters more complex, Sun Woo’s old crush, who didn’t share his feelings for him, comes back into the picture and confesses that she had been wrong to reject him.
4 Cheese In The Trap
Cheese in the Trap is another drama based on a webtoon and has one of the biggest cases of “Second Male Lead Syndrome” in any K-Drama. The idea of this syndrome is that viewers typically want the girl to end up with the second guy because of how much better he is, as a character, and for her.
Such is the case in this drama. Hong Seol likes Jung Yoo, but Jung Yoo is pretty reserved and quiet, and no one can really tell what he’s thinking. The two quickly start dating with a ton of ups and downs. All the while, Hong Seol is becoming closer to Jung Yoo’s ex-best friend, Baek In Ho. In Ho is loud and eccentric, but comforts Seol and knows how to put a smile on her face. Over time, he develops feelings for her, but she’s already too invested in Yoo.
3 Scarlet Heart: Ryeo
Another complicated love triangle that’s more than just a triangle, Scarlet Heart has about four different guys (all brothers) who like Hae Soo. It gets even more complicated due to the fact that all the guys are princes and their father, the king, wants to marry her at one point.
Hae Soo was whisked away from another time and landed in the Goryeo Dynasty as someone else. She falls in love, gets her heart broken, falls in love again, and gets it broken once more. This drama is utterly tragic and viewers shouldn’t expect a happy ending when this one is over.
2 Strong Woman Do Bong Soon
This drama is fantastic in a number of ways, one way being how it handles its love triangle. The series starts with Do Bong Soon in love with her childhood friend-turned-cop, In Kook Do, who doesn’t really give her the time of day and has a girlfriend.
Do Bong Soon ends up being roped into becoming a bodyguard for game company CEO, An Min Hyuk. Min Hyuk thinks Bong Soon is fantastic and “sexy,” as he likes to say time and time again, but she finds him nothing but annoying. This drama pans out beautifully with a happy ending for the love triangle.
1 Reply 1988
Reply 1988 is arguably one of the greatest K-dramas of all time and features a widely popular love triangle that fans are still talking about. Close friends Choi Taek and Kim Jung Hwan both like their friend Sung Deok Sun, who is pretty naive and likes both of them at different points in the series.
This drama focuses on the consequences of waiting too long and how showing your affection for someone is the best course of action when competing for love. This drama will leave fans rooting for both boys throughout the series.
NEXT: 15 Best South Korean Movies
It’s Always Sunny: 10 Moments From “The Gang Gets Quarantined” That Are Peak 2020
About The Author