Updated: December 30, 2022
We have been introduced several great Korean drama series across different platforms this year. While some of the starring Korean actors are considered popular for a long time, new names have emerged stealing people’s hearts with their onscreen presence and visual impact. From main to supporting roles, here are 17 Korean drama heartthrobs of 2022:
Lee Jae-wook in tvN’s Alchemy Of Souls
Lee Jae-wook played a young mage in tvN’s Alchemy Of Souls (2022) and captivated the audience with his unique onscreen charm and talent. He played a troublemaker from a noble family yet one who has been granted the power of the sky, known as the King’s star. Due to his past that is “as painful as a stab to the heart”, he becomes a ruthless hunter of soul shifters with the power of ice stone in his body. He is definitely an ace at representing Jang Uk, gaining more fans as a new K-drama heartthrob.
Park Solomon in Netflix’s All Of Us Are Dead and Disney+ Revenge Of Others
From a heartthrob student who survives the zombie apocalypse in Netflix’s All Of Us Are Dead (2022), Park Solomon impressed the audience with his ability to perform a dark role in Disney+ Revenge Of Others (2022). He played Ji Sooheon, a student who takes revenge for bullied students by beating up bullies. He displayed action scenes and charm in boxing sports that made him more a cool and handsome actor.
Moon Sang-min in tvN’s Under The Queen’s Umbrella
Moon Sang-min becomes the newest K-drama heartthrob by the end of the year for his impressive visual as Grand Prince Seong-nam turned Crown Prince in tvN’s Under The Queen’s Umbrella (2022). He carried an irresistible charm onscreen, captivating hearts with his good looks, height, deep voice, and promising performance as a rookie actor.
Yoon Chan-young in Netflix’s All Of Us Are Dead
Yoon Chan-young captivated young hearts with his amazing stunts and capability for action scenes in Netflix’s All Of Us Are Dead (2022). He played Cheong-san, known as a fast runner, fearless, and warmhearted friend and son who fought for everyone’s sake until the end. He climbed walls, shelves, and fought the zombies with his wise tactics and fast moves, exerting all efforts to bring the survivors to safety.
Kang Tae-oh in ENA’s Extraordinary Attorney Woo
Perhaps the most adorable K-drama lover for the year belongs to Kang Tae-oh in ENA’s Extraordinary Attorney Woo (2022). Why not? He played Lee Junho, an employee in the litigation team at Hanbada who is madly in love with our favorite lawyer, Attorney Woo. He looks at her with tender eyes, calms her worries with his bright smile, and always offers a helping hand anytime—a K-drama heartthrob worthy to be admire for his beautiful heart.
Hwang Minhyun in tvN’s Alchemy Of Souls
Who wouldn’t fall for this handsome face and talented singer-actor? Hwang Min-hyun played Seo Yul, an introvert and genius young mage of the most distinguished family who is “as noble as the sunset in fall and lacks nothing” in tvN’s Alchemy Of Souls (2022). He is astonishing to watch in general, who slayed, and totally fit his role as a heartthrob mage.
Choi Hyun-wook in tvN’s Twenty-Five Twenty-One
Choi Hyun-wook impressed with his onscreen visual and role as a cool dude and young lover in tvN’s Twenty-Five Twenty-One (2022). He played Moon Ji-woong, the most popular boy in school who loves photography and has a crush on Ko Yurim, the famous fencer. He becomes a favorite character for his display of growth in life and love.
Yook Sung-jae in MBC’s The Golden Spoon
Yook Sung-jae has obviously the unique charm and talent to captivate young hearts with his role in MBC’s The Golden Spoon (2022). He played Lee Seung-cheon, an intelligent student from a poor family who is a victim of bullying and therefore dreams of becoming a rich kid through a golden spoon to overcome discrimination. He becomes one of the most buzzworthy drama actors of the year for his overall performance and presence.
Daniel Kang in Disney+ Rookie Cops
Singer-actor Daniel Kang made a mark as one of the rising K-drama heartthrobs of the year for his effortless ability to capture fans with his overall visual and talent. He played Wi Seung-hyun, an intelligent and passionate student who aims to follow the path of his father as a police officer in Disney+ Rookie Cops (2022). This role earned him the Outstanding K-Pop Idol Actor Award at the 2022 Seoul International Drama Awards.
Park Ji-hoon in Wavve’s Weak Hero Class 1
Park Ji-hoon did not only earn great reviews for his outstanding performance in Wavve’s Weak Hero Class 1 (2022), but he is also winning hearts anew as a K-drama heartthrob in his generation. He played Yeon Si-eun, a model student who excels at school but an easy target for bullies due to his physical weakness. Nevertheless, he fights back using his brains or intelligence.
Bae In-hyuk in SBS’ Cheer Up and tvN’s Under The Queen’s Umbrella
Bae In-hyuk made a remarkable record in history for having listed in the weekly 10 Most Buzzworthy Drama Actors for his roles in two different drama series that run at the same time. He played the Crown Prince and eldest son of Queen Hwa-ryeong in tvN’s Under The Queen’s Umbrella (2022) and the President of Yeonhee University Cheerleader Club in SBS’ Cheer Up (2022). It became a milestone for him to be known as a rising actor and K-drama heartthrob.
Son Sukku in JTBC’s My Liberation Notes
Son Sukku’s onscreen visuals and performance as Mr. Gu in JTBC’s My Liberation Notes (2022) has made him the newest bae in town. He impressed with his role as the mysterious man who lives alone, avoids people, and spends most of his free time drinking soju while staring at the night sky. There’s also something unique about the way he wears his necklace paired with those countryside clothes or rugged shirt, making him a game-changer in this type of role. As the story progresses, he reveals his luxury car and displays unique skills and warmth as a man that made viewers’ hearts flutter all the more.
Ahn Hyo-seop in SBS’ Business Proposal
What’s not to love about Ahn Hyo-seop in SBS’ Business Proposal (2022)? He totally rocked playing the cold but romantic character of Kang Tae-moo, the archaeopteryx heartthrob you will ever admire—the President and CEO of a food company who graduated from Harvard University, speaks English fluently, and whose accent is to die for. He appears to be a busy man who has no time and desire for romantic relationships, dismisses all blind dates, cold towards people, but hides within him a romantic and extravagant lover.
Hwang In-youp in Netflix’s The Sound Of Magic and SBS’ Why Her?
After stealing hearts for his great visual and promising performance in tvN’s True Beauty (2020), Hwang In-youp gained more fans this year playing two roles in two different dramas. He played a rich kid in Netflix’s The Sound Of Magic (2022) and displayed his singing charms that made fans swoon. In SBS’ Why Her? (2022), he played a law school student who falls in love with a star lawyer, protecting her from all kinds of threats and dangers, while delivering romantic lines that captivate.
Nam Joo-hyuk in tvN’s Twenty-Five Twenty-One
We have seen Nam Joo-hyuk in a lot of dramas and he has always been a sweetheart. But portraying Baek Yi-jin in tvN’s Twenty-Five Twenty-One (2022), he sets a refreshing image of a heartthrob with his fresh aura and charming gaze. Besides his swoonworthy onscreen visuals, he drives a luxury red car and speaks English fluently. While most of the K-drama crushes represent intelligence, elegance, and social status, Baek Yi-jin is a fascinating character who came from riches to rags and worked hard to achieve his dream of becoming a TV reporter. He is a relatable character who is hard-pressed on every side, faced with moments of giving up, but moves forward to build a better life, making him totally a K-drama heartthrob.
Choi Woo-shik in SBS’ Our Beloved Summer
Choi Woo-shik continues to impress the audience with his talent in any given role, but he seems to deliver himself afresh as an actor-lover in the series, Our Beloved Summer (2021-2022). He played Choi Ung, a talented illustrator who hopes nothing but a simple and peaceful life that “basks in the sun during the day and lies underneath a lamp at night.” Everytime he wears his white eyeglasses and starts to scribble with his pen and the yellow lights on, you will find him most endearing—a passionate artist, a warmhearted soul, an endearing lover. He also captivated the audience with the way he portrayed the relatable character of Choi Ung—flawed yet warm as a human being.
Kim Min-gue in SBS’ Business Proposal
From a hot-tempered and dangerous character in Snowdrop (2021-2022), Kim Min-gue transformed into a positive and professional image in Business Proposal (2022). He played Cha Sung-hoon, an intelligent secretary who dresses up neatly, walks and talks professionally, wears eyeglasses, and looks totally good from head to toe. At first glance, he appears to be cold and strict, but is a true gentleman when help is needed and wise in dealing with the CEO’s workplace and personal problems. This made him a swoonworthy drama character, stealing people’s hearts.
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