Run On Korean Drama - Im Siwan and Shin Se Kyung

2021 is here!  It’s a new year for drama watching. While the new premieres are slim for the month, there are plenty of ongoing dramas to choose from too. Let’s see what we have to look forward to in this January 2021 edition of “Korean Dramas You Need to Be Watching.”

This monthly series is meant to keep you updated on what’s happening in that amazing world of Korean dramas so that you don’t miss out on anything! Here are the kdramas you should keep an eye out for in January 2021:

My Pick:

1. She Would Never Know

Sunbae, Don't Put on That Lipstick Korean Drama - Rowoon and Won Jin Ah

She Would Never Know looks like a cute rom-com that has the potential to be a lot of fun with a noona romance at the center between Won Jin Ah and Rowoon.

She Would Never Know is an office romantic comedy set at a cosmetics company about the romance between a sunbae (Won Jin Ah) who is a brand marketer that has dreams of starting her own cosmetics brand and a hoobae (Rowoon) who is also a brand marketer.

She Would Never Know is scheduled to premiere in January 18 on JTBC.


2. Marriage Lyrics and Divorce Music

Marriage Lyrics and Divorce Music Korean Drama - Sung Hoon and Lee Ga Ryeung

Marriage Lyrics and Divorce Music is about three women in their 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s (Lee Ga Ryeong, Park Joo Mi, Jeon Soo Kyung) who face difficult times alongside their husbands.

Marriage Lyrics and Divorce Music is scheduled to premiere in January on TV Chosun.


3. Royal Secret Agent

Secret Royal Inspector Korean Drama - L

Royal Secret Agent is about a secret royal inspector (L) during the Joseon Era whose job is to spend his nights among the regular people while hiding his identity and then report back to the king the problems they face.

Royal Secret Agent airs Monday and Tuesday on KBS.

4. Run On

Run On Korean Drama - Im Siwan and Shin Se Kyung

Run On is about a national track and field athlete (Im Siwan) who is forced to retire after an accident that meets a foreign film translator (Shin Se Kyung) who always has to look back because she goes over the same scenes repeatedly.

Run On is scheduled airs Wednesday and Thursday on JTBC.

5. Mr. Queen

Mr. Queen Korean Drama - Kim Jung Hyun and Shin Hye Sun

Mr. Queen is about a modern man who is transported back in time to the Joseon era where he inhabits the body of a queen (Shin Hye Sun) and gets involved with a secretive king (Kim Jung Hyun) who has a Jekyll and Hyde type personality.

Mr. Queen airs Saturday and Sunday on tvN.

6. Live On

Live On Korean Drama - Hwang Min Hyun and Jung Da Bin

Live On is about a popular high school student (Jung Da Bin) who finds out someone is trying to reveal a secret about her past so she joins her school’s broadcasting club and enlists the help of the perfectionist head of the club (Hwang Min Hyun) to find the culprit.

Live On airs Tuesday on JTBC.

7. True Beauty

True Beauty Korean Drama - Cha Eun Woo and Moon Ga Young

True Beauty follows the romance between a woman (Moon Ga Young) who would never be caught without makeup on and the only man (Cha Eun Woo) who has seen her bare face.

True Beauty airs Wednesday and Thursday on tvN.

8. Lovestruck in the City

Lovestruck in the City Korean Drama - Ji Chan Wook and Kim Ji Won

Lovestruck in the City is a realistic romance about the dating lives of young people including a passionate architect (Ji Chang Wook) and a freelance marketer (Kim Ji Won) posing as a free spirit in a new city.

Lovestruck in the City airs Tuesday and Friday on Kakao TV.

9. Please Don’t Date Him

Please Don't Meet Him Korean Drama - Jun and Song Ha Yoon

Please Don’t Date Him tells the story of a an AI programmer (Song Ha Yoon) who wants to fall in love but avoid the wrong men, so she ends up creating an AI program that helps identify bad people. She then meets a firefighter (Jun) that her AI program is unable to analyze.

Please Don’t Date Him airs Tuesday on MBC.

10. Hush

Hush Korean Drama - Hwang Jung Min and Yoona

Hush is an office drama focusing on the problems and struggles of newspaper reporters including a veteran reporter (Hwang Jung Min) and an intern reporter (Yoona) he mentors.

Hush airs Friday and Saturday on JTBC.


The Uncanny Counter

Amazing Rumor Korean Drama - Jo Byung Gyu, Kim Se Jeong, Yu Jung Sang, Yum Hye Ran

The Uncanny Counter is about a group of people (Jo Byung Gyu, Kim Se Jeong, Yu Jung Sang, Yum Hye Ran) with special abilities called Counter who disguise themselves as employees at a noodle restaurant, but they actually hunt evil spirits.

The Uncanny Counter airs Saturday and Sunday on OCN.

The Goddess of Revenge

The Goddess of Revenge Korean Drama - Yoon Hyun Min and Kim Sa Rang

The Goddess of Revenge is a about a reporter (Kim Sa Rang) who was a popular influence but lost everything after a false scandal and a successful lawyer (Yoon Hyun Min) whose family is ruined because of a scandal. The pair seek revenge on those who wronged them.

The Goddess of Revenge airs Saturday and Sunday on TV Chosun.


Awaken Korean Drama - Nam Goong Min

Awaken is a mystery romance drama about the connection between a mysterious incident that happened in a village 28 years ago and events happening in the present. A detective (Nam Goong Min) and a police officer (Seolhyun) team up to solve the case.

Awaken airs Monday and Tuesday on tvN.

The Penthouse

Penthouse Korean Drama - Eugene, Lee Ji Ah, Uhm Ki Joon, Kim So Yeon

The Penthouse is about a woman’s (Eugene) ambitious goal to rise into high society through the real estate business, and she will do anything to succeed, even if she becomes a monster along the way.

The Penthouse airs Monday and Tuesday on SBS.

Delayed Justice

Delayed Justice Korean Drama - Bae Sung Woo

Delayed Justice is about a lawyer (Kwon Sang Woo) and a reporter (Jung Woo Sung) who fight for justice for people who are falsely accused.

Delayed Justice airs Friday and Saturday on SBS.

Cheat On Me, If You Can

Cheat On Me, If You Can Korean Drama - Go Joon and Jo Yeo Jung

Cheat On Me, If You Can is a comedy mystery drama about people doing bad things involving marriage, divorce, and affairs with the focus on a bestselling novelist (Jo Yeo Jung) and her husband (Go Joon) who is a divorce lawyer.

Cheat On Me If You Can airs Wednesday and Thursday on KBS.

What dramas are you looking forward to or enjoying in January?

Make sure to get caught up because there are more dramas coming your way in February!

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22 responses to “10 Korean Dramas You Need to Be Watching in January 2021”

  1. seankfletcher Avatar

    This is a good list, Kay. Probably my favourites of those currently airing is Run On and Please Don’t Date Him. I am also liking Awaken.

    The Uncanny Counter seems popular. I find it’s up and down for me.

    I dropped Cheat On Me fairly early on.

    I am warming to Royal Secret Agent, but reserving my judgement re Mr Queen. The cast is so good, but I haven’t taken to it yet.

    1. Kay Avatar

      I’ve been hearing good things about Run On. It is on my watch list since I’m a big fan of Shin Se Kyung 🙂 So is Please Don’t Date Him pretty fun? I haven’t been hearing much about that one.

      I’ll also be checking out both Royal Secret Agent and Mr. Queen. We didn’t get enough historicals last year, but 2021 seems to be making up for it with a deluge of them coming our way!

      1. seankfletcher Avatar

        There are great match ups in Run On, with very good performances and a very watchable story.

        Please Don’t Date Him is very good fun. It has a bit of everything in it and pokes fun at appliances operated by AI and a cafe that serves health conscious drinks/food. It doesn’t skimp on dealing with more serious subjects either.

        You are right regarding not enough historicals last year. It took me a couple of minutes to get back into the groove with Royal Secret Agent 😂

        1. Kay Avatar

          Both Run On and Please Don’t Date Him do sound like good watches that I might enjoy 🙂

          Yes, I can see how it could take a bit to get back into the swing of things, hehe. I only completed one historical last year, and it was early in the year, Queen: Love and War. It’s a favorite genre of mine, so I can’t wait to get back into them with so many already on the line up 🙂

  2. D Avatar

    Thanks for the list Kay. My pick this month is the same as yours. 🙂

    1. Kay Avatar

      You’re welcome! Hopefully, we have chosen a solid pick for this month 🙂

  3. Kate Avatar

    That’s a great list to start the year! As I’m on a “currently airing” viewing schedule at the mo’, I’ll check out She Would Never Know, Royal Secret Agent, and Live On. I’m liking Run On, Uncanny Counter, and Mr. Queen but LOVING True Beauty. Is anyone liking Lovestruck in the City? I’m only watching because the eps are short and JCW but I’m not liking.

    1. Kay Avatar

      It definitely looks like a promising start to the new year in Dramaland 🙂 Hopefully, you’ll keep a nice crop of currently airing dramas to keep you entertained. I want to see many of the ones on your list.

      I haven’t started Lovestruck in the City, but so far I’ve heard more negative than positive about it. I think people are like you and just sticking around for Ji Chang Wook which is probably what I will do 😂

      1. star Avatar

        well lovestruck in the city is a really good drama for us international viewers. its difference from those old tiring dramas and different narration is the main reason that it is so good and refreshing. also i do understand why the viewers of contemporary style dramas do not like it but as an individual i think this drama is awesome

        1. Kay Avatar

          Oooh, it’s good to hear some more positive takes on this drama 🙂 I’ll admit I tend to prefer more traditional dramas, but this one is still on my list, and I will definitely check it out. I’ve seen enough dramas to know that sometimes they surprise you, so maybe I’ll like it too! hehe 🙂

  4. Snow Flower Avatar
    Snow Flower

    I am thinking about checking Mr. Queen, The Uncanny Counter, Secret Royal Inspector, and Awaken. But I have to finish Kairos first.

    1. Kay Avatar

      Kairos will be next for me, and I’ll also be checking out Mr. Queen, Secret Royal Inspector, True Beauty, and Run On. We have a good looking crop of dramas 🙂

  5. MyKDramaticLife Avatar

    Horaaaay! I dont have any pick among the January premiers. But ‘Marriage Lyrics Divorce Music’ headline is kind of picking my interest. Not quite sure about Sunbae Put on that Lipstick since I’m not into noona romances.

    Among the currently airing, I’m watching Mr. Queen and find it very fun and quirky. On my 2021 prio list are Uncanny Counter and Penthouse: the ratings are telling me to check them out. 😁 And Lovestruck in the City for sure out of my love for Wookie. I also have to check out Run On to see what’s going on with that one, and to see what else Siwan can show since I really really liked him last year in Strangers From Hell (8.5/10).
    I initially planned to try Cheat on Me and True Beauty but havent gotten through them yet: time constraints. And so I’m not giving them any priorities. Hahaha.

    Happy New Year everyone!


    1. Kay Avatar

      January definitely gave us a much needed break in terms of new dramas. Hopefully, it will give me a chance to make some headway on my drama list, hehe.

      I do plan to check out a bunch from the list like Mr. Queen, True Beauty, Royal Secret Agent, The Penthouse, Lovestruck in the City, and Run On. So I will be busy!

      Happy New Year to you!

      1. MyKDramaticLife Avatar

        What do you think about Run On ?
        Havent seen Shin Se Kyung for a while. So I’d love to see her on screen again.

        1. Kay Avatar

          I haven’t started that one yet. I definitely will though because I’ve been missing Shin Se Kyung big time ❤

  6. Sahara🌵 (@saharadesserted) Avatar

    I’m loving Run On, Uncanny Encounter, and Mr. Queen right now. I’ve been meaning to watch True Beauty maybe tonight lol. I watched the first 2 episodes of Lovestruck in the City, but I’m not sure if I like it. I might keep watching for Ji Chang Wook lmao. Always love your lists. I’ll need to check some of these other dramas out 😁

    1. Kay Avatar

      It’s good that you’ve found quite a few dramas to enjoy right now 🙂 I plan to check in Run On, Mr. Queen, True Beauty, Lovestruck in the City, and Royal Secrete Agent. We have a good selection to choose from 🙂

      1. Sahara🌵 (@saharadesserted) Avatar

        Sorry for the late reply! University started up again 😭 Mr. Queen is so hilarious so definitely watch it! Run On is really cute 🥺 I’m debating on True Beauty like I know it’s super popular, but I can’t get myself to because I read the webtoon. They did really good with casting so I’ll have to get myself to watch it lol. I love L so I just added Royal Secret Agent to my list. I hope you enjoy everything and let us know your thoughts!

        1. Kay Avatar

          I’ve been hearing such good things about Mr. Queen and Run On, so I’m glad to hear that you are still enjoying them 🙂 Hearing good things about True Beauty too. I haven’t read the webtoon, but I will definitely be checking it out. And yes, the cast is really great for it! Royal Secret Agent is still on the list too. I know you probably have less drama time with University now, but I hope it’s going well for you 🙂

  7. drmlvr Avatar

    my currently watching
    _ true beauty
    _ mr queen
    _ cheat on me if you can
    _ a love is beautiful (this drama is so cute)

    I’m looking for another drama to watch while waiting for new eps of all those dramas I mentioned above hehe , thank you for recommendations :))

    1. Kay Avatar

      You’ve got a good line-up going there! I definitely plan to eventually check out True Beauty and Mr. Queen.

      I know it’s tough when you have downtime between the currently airing dramas. As for recommendations, are you all caught up on recent dramas? I recently loved Start-Up and Tale of the Nine-Tailed. Also, if you watch other Asian dramas, I would highly recommend Someday or One Day if you like fantasy romance. If you’ve seen all of those, we can try to find something else for you 🙂

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