Celebrity News
Goodbye, Kim Rae-won
by | August 13, 2009 | 87 Comments

Oh, this makes me sad. We frequently see male entertainers head off to enlist in their mandatory army duty so it’s not like this comes as a surprise, but I’ll really miss Kim Rae-won as he serves over the next two years.

Kim Rae-won isn’t the most conventionally good-looking actor out there, but he has a wonderful energy and warmth, and a very genuine way of embodying his characters that makes him so lovable once you’ve seen him acting. (Titles to watch: Movies …ing, My Little Bride, Sunflower, Mr. Socrates. Dramas: My Love Patzzi, Attic Cat, Gourmet.)

He’s an actor who grows on you the more you watch him act (which is not unlike So Ji-sub or Cha Seung-won in that regard). I’d liked him in the past, but it was really his 2008 drama series Gourmet that rekindled my love. (Perhaps that’s because I’d seen him mostly in movies before, and those tend to fade from memory rather quickly; dramas leave more lasting impressions for me.)

In any case, Kim reported for duty on the afternoon of August 13 sporting his crew cut and was sent off by a small group of fans, mostly Korean and Japanese.

*sniffle* Bye, Kim Rae-won!



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87 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. langdon813

    What a sad and happy thing to wake up to this morning! Sad because he’s leaving and we won’t get to see him for so long…and happy, because those photos are worth waking up to, no doubt! Nothing wrong with a little eye candy with your coffee.

    Good luck Kim Rae-won!

  2. Gembul10

    I will miss him and his acting…
    I agree with you, the more you watch him, the more you like him. His acting is so natural…
    God bless you KRW, may you return from the army as a stronger and more mature man!

  3. Lemoncat

    He just left and I’m already hoping he’ll return soon! Wish him all the best of luck during his army service and hope he’ll come back soon in a new drama~

    I only recently discovered his charm when watching Gourmet, too; I totally know what you mean, Javabeans, when you said he adds a certain warmth and energy to his characters. His talent is so natural that he’s completely grabbed your attention before you know what’s happening, and by the time the drama’s over, you feel like you’ve made a new friend.

  4. Lilis

    he’s really amazing actor with good personality..
    No matter what happens, i will support and love you forever My Kim Rae Won..
    You are the only one….
    I’m gonna miss him…hukhuk…

  5. chajjye

    he is one of the best looking k-actor, imo.

    Love all his characters, so adorably charismatic.

    he also acted with jung ryeo won in which star u’re from.

  6. Arivle

    OMG I’M REALLY SADDDDDDDDDD!!!!!!!!! he is one of my favorites actors……two years..wow….I’m truly going to miss him…..I love all his dramas and movies…good luck!!!!

  7. waimee78

    his fans were old.

  8. Tha

    I fell in love with him in My Love Patzzi and hadn’t fell out of love with him yet!!!

  9. lb_tmi

    so sad…

    is it just me, or is he really thin in those photos?

    ahhh… just watched the beginning of Plum Blossom.. now, that’ll be all that i’ll be seeing of him.. his nice, white arse..

    *tears* so sad… imma hafta go back to watching the rest of Plum Blossom to cheer myself up.

  10. 10 findland

    I’ll miss him soon, good luck and come back to us KRW!

  11. 11 qaseih

    # 7 waimee78

    his fans were old.

    That means, he has a lot of fans…
    From the younger one to the elders…
    And i am one of young people that admire and love him!!
    I bet there are thousands of young people outside there also love him..
    Because he is truly talented actor, honest and amazing person..
    The more you know him, the more you love him..hehehheh

  12. 12 meirav

    it is sad i will miss frist time saw was him was which star u came from
    and i feel in love with him he is the best actor i seen all his dramas
    i wish him good luck

  13. 13 jenn

    He actually looks pretty good with his cut; many people don’t. I’ve never had an urge to watch his dramas/movies…sometimes it’s the exact opposite, he deters me…but even so, he’s a likeable person with a sweet smile.

  14. 14 Molly

    I saw him in What Star Are You From? with Jung Ryeo Won. I didn’t like the plot too much but he was a good actor there too. I also saw Attic Cat – it was my first drama ever! I remember loving that one, although I can barely remember anything from in now. :)

    Just wondering, what are the standards of “conventional beauty”?

  15. 15 Sonam

    No, no . I don’t know what you mean by conventional beauty. KRW is classic Asian handsomeness. And then he has that ‘genuine article’ radiance. And yes, he looks so good in that crew cut. He is lovely lovely lovely. Asia is huge and we just don’t have one kind of beauty. Unless you mean the western standard.

  16. 16 Steph

    Nooooooooooooo! I love me some Kim Rae Won. He has such charisma. He’s adorably handsome and such a great actor. I’m going to miss him. ::sniffle::

  17. 17 AWC

    Sad to see him go, but now I have a reason to finally finish Gourmet. Also, he looks good in his crew cut! That’s a rarity among the guys I’ve seen beginning their military duty.

  18. 18 tuswit

    it’s sad, i first saw him in MLPazzi & will surely miss him! i hope 2 yrs wld just go by quickly not only for KRW but for all the ones who left recently to go for their military training. i pray that they be safe & come back unharmed! God bless you Kim Rae won ssi & your other colleagues who left before you like Kim Jae Won among many others. he’s looking really good in crewcut h.style.

  19. 19 B.B.

    Big THANK YOU JB, for the heap of pics, KRW was one awaited with some dread at the enlistment hair mowing. But he still looks great YAH…..

    Very best wishes to KRW, back to the date marking and waiting again

    Aja fighting.

  20. 20 nanaee

    awww… he looks hot..

  21. 21 coco

    Sad day at my house! 2 yrs without KRW. Oh well, knew it was coming but it still feels like a void in my future drama viewing. I got hooked after watching Attic Cat and he’s headed up my favourites list ever since. Good actor, handsome and great bod!
    Is it ok for an old lady to say that? Maybe old but not dead yet!
    So long Kim Rae Won.

  22. 22 Gaston

    Javabeans, sorry to be rude but it bothers me your double standard moral. You do not consider the men and women equally. The compulsory military service only for men is a sexist discrimination but it seems natural for you. Treat a person differently because of his/her sex or nationality is not very nice.

  23. 23 Auntie Mame

    Oh my, another one gone from our sights, for two years.

    It would interesting to see a list of all the actors doing their military service and their return to civilian life dates. Because, at this point, I can’t even remember who is in and who is coming back soon. hee, hee.

  24. 24 coco

    Whoa Gaston!
    Lets just send KRW off to serve his country on a more positive note!

  25. 25 lovenyc52

    o i’ll miss you KRW… loved you in ‘what star are you from’

    he def looks good with the crew cut :)

  26. 26 loveydovey

    :'( this makes me think of Gong Woo =[

  27. 27 javabeans

    I have no idea what Gaston’s complaint is. ????

    It seems “natural” for me? I agree that compulsory military conscription is sexist and outdated. It’s also not something I have any power to control. ???

  28. 28 Snikki

    KRW was my 2nd k-celeb crush (Won Bin was the first). That was eons ago, since I have a fickle fan heart I’ve moved on to Gong Yoo. Anyway, what I really wanted to say is, KRW holds a sentimental place in my heart, I got hooked on kdramas and kmovies because of him. I may not have seen all his projects, but any news about him interests me.

    Buh-bye for now!

  29. 29 jinkzz

    Awww… i knew this was coming but still feel sad that he is finally going off to do his 2 year MS… love him in Attic Cat and Which Star are you from… will surely miss this adorable actor.

    On the up side, 2 years is not that long …it will go by fast….i still remember the day we sent off Gong Yoo to MS but now he barely has 4 months to go…

  30. 30 emeldy

    KRW is one of those guys who is effortlessly charming. He just takes ya heart away. I will miss u.

    He look so good in that military hair cut, hope he use that look in some of his drama.

  31. 31 avalony

    Kim Rae Won was actually my first K-celeb crush lol. I first saw him in an old drama series called 학교 (school) where he played a basketball rebel with a heart of gold. I was totally hooked and that series was what made me start watching kdramas in the first place.

    Farewell oppa!

  32. 32 lenrasoon

    i’m sad! i’ll miss Kim Rae won >.<~

  33. 33 capricious

    so far, i think he looks the best with the crew cut than any other actors i’ve seen being send off to military duty.

  34. 34 snowanh

    I do think Kim Rae Won is the best beat actor of his age group by far…so many have left for military service this year…who is getting out of service soon???? I am looking forward to Rae Won’s next project in two year time….

  35. 35 Yoo Jin

    god I’m gonna miss him so much…he’s such a great actor =(

  36. 36 Anonymous

    He looks good with this short hair cut.

  37. 37 silly

    #31 – Ahh, “School 2″! Another person who’d seen this teen drama. ^^ The “School” series (there were four of them) was a springboard for a slew of today’s stars, among them:
    School – Jang Hyuk, Ahn Jae Mo, Choi Kang Hee, Bae Doo Na, Yang Dong Geun, Kim Min Sun
    School 2 – Kim Rae Won, Lee Yo Won, Ha Ji Won, Kim Min Hee
    School 3 (my fave) – Lee Dong Wook, Jo In Sung, Park Kwang Hyun
    School 4 – Im Soo Jung, Gong Yoo, Lee Yu Ri

    Good memories….

    KRW’s debut project, “Na,” was another teen drama. Has anyone else seen that? All I remember about it now is that it also starred Ahn Jae Mo. As you can tell, I’ve been a fan for a long time. ^^

    Needless to say, I’m going to miss him. T.T

  38. 38 frash

    I love Kim Rae Won sfm.
    he was my first korean male crush *SNIFFING FOREVER*
    LOL. and his smile makes me melt D:
    two years is too long ):

  39. 39 Carrie

    I am sad to see him go. I absolutely *heart* him… I hope these 2 years are good to him and they fly by. I’ll miss his charm, smile and acting. :(

  40. 40 Lumi

    The day has finally come for KRW to start his military compulsory service,SNIFF, SNIFF.! Bitter sweet news to wake up to. (He does look very handsome in that crew cut)

    Attic Cat was the first drama I ever saw him and became his fan immediately (He’s number two in my long list). I’ve always considered him to be the Korean Tom Hanks. An incredibly versatile and charismatic actor.

    I’ve seen most of the dramas and movies he has been in, but had had my reservations about Plum Blossom because I’ve learned that there is a lot of nudity. Would anyone recommend me to see it? I’m no prude, but it bothers me to see someone who looks so wholesome to be in a adult movie.

    So many of my favorite actors have recently entered or are going into their MS.

    Good luck and God bless you KRW!!

  41. 41 Alyssia

    lol it’s mostly ahjumma that are ther eto send him good byes. I thought he had a more younger fanbase.lolz

    Dont watch Plum blossoms. I watched the movie because of him. Sadly the movie has too much adult content. I mean some movies does need the sex scenes to show the passion between the lovers. But this movie is all about sex. I had to skip most of it. We dont need to see all that. I really did not like his character. The way he treated the first girl was rather bad. I’ll probably ruin some of your wholesome image of KRW if you see it.

  42. 42 Elena

    Well – as for the ahjummas – we usually have more time and money to attend stuff. :)

  43. 43 elise

    so many good looking guys in the military right now!

    Good Luck, KRW! See you in two years!

  44. 44 Cherry

    I first acknowledge Kim Rae-won from his drama Love story in Harvard. It’s one of my all time favorite drama. He is very good actor and he’s also good looking to me. Good luck in the army Kim Rae-won.

  45. 45 ripgal

    Aww… that was quick!
    One minute he was considering a project and was close to doing it, and next, he’s off to MS.. T.T

    Will miss him dearly.

    Hwaiting KRW!

  46. 46 bspanda

    “He’s an actor who grows on you the more you watch him act (which is not unlike So Ji-sub or Cha Seung-won in that regard).”

    I think you really summed up Kim Rae-Won (as well as the other 2 of my favs) Javabeans! A sad day. I am really going to miss Kim Rae Won.

    There has always been something about watching Kim Rae Won that is comforting. (Yes he still had it even in ‘Harvard” *eye roll* That is one awesome demo of his talent!) He always comes across as warm and ‘true” in playing his characters. KRW seems like a humble and lovely guy, someone that would be lovely to have as a bestie or boyfriend. If only….. :)

    I’ll take comfort in seeing the smiling photos of him enlisting. That megawatt smile (and his cheery look) will help me in my denial that he will not have any new projects for the next 2 yrs. Suppose that is where the KRW DVDs come in handy. May he keep safe and return to bigger and better things on his return.

    *Waves* Kim Rae Won!!! Take care ok? *Waves*

    @22 Gaston
    Perhaps you can direct your complaint to your local Korean Consulate. That would be more constructive.

    As much as I think Javabeans is all powerful with her awesome blog, unless she is the President of Korea in disguise (are you JB?) JB has no control over the compulsory military service in Korea.

    • 46.1 Jomo

      A almost two years later LOL!

  47. 47 Tippy

    Not only is he rocking the crew cut, but he looks fab in a plain tee and jeans!

    See you when you get back! :)

  48. 48 Jae Young

    Hum, I think it’s sort of interesting that most of the fans on the send off appear to be ajummas. I enjoy Kim Rae Won, so that’s not a slight, just me wondering out loud. Kids are out on break, I think, so yeah, it’s prolly cos he’s not crazy pretty. Ah, Korea.

  49. 49 yo

    not good looking? – I’d say he’s HOTT *^^* aw i’m gonna miss him though.. he was one of my fav actors. T.T

  50. 50 asianromance

    good luck Kim Rae Won! and he’s like one of the few actors who actually look good in that army haircut!

  51. 51 nomad

    we’ll miss you Kim Rae Won :(

  52. 52 (^.^)Boink(^.^)

    I will miss KRW..

  53. 53 (^.^)Boink(^.^)

    I will miss KRW…

  54. 54 yvhsien

    Everytime one of these cuties leave for MS, it seems like a huge void. Even though 2 years seems like a long time, I agree with jinkzz that it passes faster than we expect i.e. in the case of Goong Yoo. Still, it’s never a happy moment to say good-bye to them.

  55. 55 Lin Z

    I will not be alone in missing KRW obviously…. me and my best buddies are all his fans!!..ahh..hope he will come back even much a stronger actor later (now he is already a talented one anyway..)

  56. 56 amktsy

    bye bye to him…
    kind of like him……..
    like him in gourmet,my love pattizi………

  57. 57 Sogba

    ill miss this guy and his acting Kim Rae-won is such a wonderful actor and he
    really does grow on you

    good luck Rae won ssi and Gid bless You

  58. 58 CyNurse

    I’ll miss KRW so much. I guess I’ll have to watch his dramas and movies again.

  59. 59 coco

    I just read that after 4 wks basic training he’s been assigned to Namsan Public Library as a Public service worker. I’m thinking the Library will see a few more visitors in the future!

  60. 60 Allie

    I’ve loved him through every drama he’s starred in. Attic Cat, What Star Are You From, Love Story in Harvard, Gourmet, etc… I didn’t know of his army departure until just now. How sad :( SERVE KOREA WELL KRW! I KNOW YOU WILL 😀

  61. 61 Amanda

    I think it’s cute that all the women who showed for his entering his service years are all ajummas! lol. LOL. it makes me feel like I’m looking at the korean version of the Josh Groban Fanclub.

    I don’t see why though- Kim Rae Won has broad spectrum appeal! you’re totally right about his transparency and warmth as an actor. Maybe its the direct contrast to his award winning smile- but i’ve always felt that Kim Rae Won’s crying scenes were the most heart breaking scenes ever! Its like watching a little kid cry.

    Anyway- bye Kim Rae Won. hopefully we’ll SEE YOU SOON!

  62. 62 goere

    Gonna miss you oppah rae
    You are my one and only one in my hear,,,

  63. 63 tina

    i miss you for two years

  64. 64 Lumi

    Thank you Alyssia.

    I appreciate your answering my post. I’ve seen most of KRW’s movies and most recent dramas. I appreciate a good movie with a good plot. I’ve never felt that sex scenes were absolutely necessary in a lot of ‘romantic’movies to attract viewers..

  65. 65 Sarah

    definately sex screens were not necessary but i guess it’s something different for an artiste to be participate in. u won’t want to see KRW being the same nice, romantic, lovely, etc guy in all his dramas/movies(i.e. love story in harward, which star r u from & many more), do u? sooner or later, u’ll get bored of him seeing all the same for so many yrs. it’s good to see KRW with different characters, isn’t it? such as insadong scandal being the latest.

  66. 66 cyna

    My day is not complete with out watching any of his film..(particularly-Which Star Are You From?)We hate to see him go but still im happy that he is willing to serve his country giving up his acting career for 2 yrs is really a sacrifice.Two thumbs up for you KRW! We will miss you…take care and remember that you are always included in my prayers…..Ms.Cyna from the hilippines

  67. 67 Anonymous

    Sorry to ask, but i have something very curious in my mind. I watched KBS world last week and I heard that Kim Rae Won is entering the military service for 2 years. But, does any one know the reason why he is entering the military only at the age of 28?? Im not being offensive here. Im just asking if people can clear my suspense. If no one knows or sometimes its natural, its fine too. I just thought that there might be some reason to it and maybe some fans can answer my question?

    really really no offense here.

  68. 68 sweetie pie

    take care kim rae-won!!!
    i really like him as an actor…

  69. 69 Krypton

    ดูแลตัวเองดีๆนะคะ Take care! ^ ^

  70. 70 jean

    He definitely grows on a viewer. Love that crew cut however. Love it. It suits him since he’s not as “pretty” as other Korean stars. I don’t mind pretty, but I like his slight roughness. I fell in love with him in Say That You Love Me.

    Isn’t he a bit old to do military service? What is the age limit in Korea? And do women have to serve?

  71. 71 Gigi

    Yes. The more you watch his drama and movies, the more you will like him. KRW has tried many different roles, testing his acting skills from funny roles to crying characters. He proves himself as not just a good-looking star, but rather a very hardworking actor contributing lots of energy and emotions in each role. Perhaps his smile is so lovable, when he takes on crying roles, I feel bad. His recent movie, namely Insadong Scandal, gives him a chance to act a mature, metrosexual and charismatic man. I love this movie as well as his other drama. He looks so different from his past work in Insadong Scandal, though the movie plot is far from excellent. Anyway, KRW is the Korean star making me hooked up with K-Dramas. I don’t know how long I will keep up my passion with KDramas, but so long as KRW still acts, I will still watch his work.

  72. 72 Leah

    Aw man. I only just discovered Kim Rae-Won, and now I find out he will be gone for two years!

  73. 73 moonriver

    KRW…i missed him already… i love him in Attic Cat, Love Story in Harvard, Which Star Are You From and Gourmet…for me..he’s one of the BEST GOOD LOOKING GUY AND BEST ACTOR IN KOREA. : )

  74. 74 mahnaz

    Hi raewon I like you movies and dramas. you are very very handsome .

  75. 75 sepide

    من عاشق اقای کیم رائه وون هستم و سریال تو از کدوم ستاره ای بهترین اثر اوست

  76. 76 Chrystaille

    Awww….recently discovered Korean drama …came across this obviously talented, charming dude with the infectious smile….only to find out he’s gone off 2 the military. The buzz cut works 4 him…btw. Attic Cat was my introduction to KRW but it won’t end there. That boy’s got me hook, line & sinker and l’ll keep watching until l’ve seen everything. He should b back by then and l’ll b waiting for new dramas, movies, etc. YAY!!!! Can’t wait!!! :) much luv

  77. 77 emad

    KRW was the reason i started watching korean movies and dramas. one of ur big fans dude and wish u winning cannes best actor in future.

  78. 78 titien afrlianty

    peranya bagus sekali apalagi waktu film love story in harfard….

  79. 79 butterfly5021


  80. 80 krw_lhois

    ah…. time flies so fast. it’s august next month! is kim rae won coming back?

  81. 81 Mari

    KIM RAE WON is finally BACK after 2 years…how time flies…

  82. 82 loyalfan_1

    Love to see him again with Ryeo Won Jung either in a modern or historical drama.

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