Drama Casting & News
Namgoong Min and Lee Young-ah headline cable rom-com
by | August 9, 2013 | 68 Comments

Here’s another fall drama to look out for — I know, as if we really needed MORE fall dramas this year — cable network E Channel will be broadcasting an original drama, a ten-episode romantic comedy series called Unemployed Romance. It has Namgoong Min (Gu Am Heo Jun) and Lee Young-ah (Vampire Prosecutor) as headliners, and tells a bright relatable story about a woman who dreams of being a writer but lives off of unemployment checks.

The new series comes from a rookie PD/writer team and stars Lee Young-ah as an aspiring drama writer who dreams of one day being the next Kim Soo-hyun. But in reality the only credit she has to her name is a third-rate drama on endless reruns called Love and Ruin (ha), where she was just one of many wage-collecting staff writers. She goes from that to rock bottom, living off of unemployment wages in order to get by.

It’s at the unemployment benefits office where she runs into Namgoong Min, who — horror of horrors — is her first love from college. I’m already cringing for her. He’s working there on a short-term contract as a civil servant, in order to qualify for some scholarship. So he’s literally the guy cutting her the unemployment check? Ack.

What’s more is that he happens to think of her as bad mojo — everything goes awry in his life when he’s with her, and he blames her for things going badly for him during their college days. The chance meeting at the unemployment office brings her back into his life, and then she starts to mess things up for him again, this time starting with a potential new woman in his life. The premise sounds really cute and down-to-earth, which in the sea of ghost-seers and high melodrama these days, would be a rather nice change of pace. I hope the writing and directing deliver something worthwhile.

Unemployed Romance will air on Saturday nights and premieres October 5.

Via Xports News


68 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. snow__white

    Sounds cute

  2. Laura

    the story sounds really nice ๐Ÿ™‚ I haven’t seen Lee Young-ah in anything more apart from Vampire Prosecutor, so I’m waiting for her in a different role.

    • 2.1 windsun33

      I think this is one of the few shows coming out with no ghosts or doctors. YAYYYY!!

    • 2.2 sweetcapuxiiino

      Watch her in Golden Bride. Very nice and family drama. Still one of my favorites until now. Haven’t seen her in a while. I’m looking forward to this drama.

  3. Saima

    oh, yes!! Namgoong Min leading a show – aboutttt tiiiime!!

    • 3.1 the other kay

      i know! took long enough. he looks sort of like cn blue’s yonghwa in that photo, but with the acting chops lol

      • 3.1.1 Waiting

        I agree! I don’t care for his character in Gu Am Heo Jun, but I would miss him once this series wraps in the next few weeks.

        So good to read he will be lead and back on TV!

    • 3.2 bluemoon

      This time, it seems like’s going to get the girl too. rooting for him

  4. Angeliam

    Why does it have to be only 10 epi when lee young ah is in want more

  5. Mystisith

    I like the cat and dog story and I like this pairing very much. Girl should stop falling for civil servants of any kind, just saying. ๐Ÿ˜‰
    1 episode a week = Waiting will be a torture, as usual.

  6. Amberscube

    Ahhhhhh! I like Namgoong Min and this is exciting news!

  7. Emaan

    Nam Goong Min a Male Lead!! Yes drama please be good!! He is such a good actor. ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. ryoko

    Nam Goong Min in the LEAD role, oh thank goodness finally! This news just made my day. ๐Ÿ˜€
    Wow, and I also really like Lee Young Ah from Vampire Prosecutor as well. Thank you, drama gods.

    • 8.1 Ennayra

      I’m totally with you on this one. I’ve only seen Namgoong Min in Can You Hear My Heart, and let me tell you, I adored his character. I couldn’t quite hate him and I couldn’t quite love him, so I just decided he was the best thing about the show and settled with adoration.

      I also like Lee Young Ah from Vampire Prosecutor. I went to a Korean BBQ place near DC the other week and saw a big old picture of her on the wall by our table. It was good times ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Kay

    is that Golden Bride!!?! – she looks so different!

  10. 10 Trina

    Yes, Namgoong Min as a male lead!!!! Thank you kdrama gods!!!!!!! I hope it is good….

  11. 11 kumi

    Oh, it’s Mi Sun from ‘Baker King’! ๐Ÿ™‚

  12. 12 True2U

    Lee Young-ah (Vampire Prosecutor)?????? Do you need to ask? But aside from this. I wonder when the next installment for VP is going to air. I’ve been waiting for it, for awhile now.

    • 12.1 Grumps

      It won’t air this year. OCN posted on their facebook page that they are searching for a new writer so most likely VP3 will air only next year.

      • 12.1.1 Ennayra

        Aw, sadness. I hadn’t heard this news.

  13. 13 Lovebug

    Finally!!! I love the both of them! so happy for Namgoong Min! (Boy can that boy cry!)

    • 13.1 ryoko

      I know, right? He rips my heart out when he cries.

      • 13.1.1 houstontwin

        Yes! He was so moving in the last episodes of Birth of a Rich Man!

        • ryoko

          You mean he plays the type of character that makes you ache for him in that drama as well?! (I haven’t seen Birth of a Rich Man yet, though it’s on my watch list.) Did you see Can You Hear My Heart? That was the first time I saw him in anything. He acts with such pathos. His tears really got to me. I wanted to reach into my screen, give him a hug and tell him everything would be all right. I’m not usually affected by actors to that extent, lol.

          • houstontwin

            He plays a guy who does bad things to please his father and ends up broken hearted.

          • Peridot

            “He acts with such pathos.” That is a very good way to put it, ryoko :). I also noticed that there is this shaky quality to his voice that always makes him sound as if he is at the point of tears. He is a wonderful actor and I hope that he receives more recognition for his talent.

      • 13.1.2 houstontwin

        I hope that Viki or Dramafever will sub it!

      • 13.1.3 eny

        he make me cry when i watch early episode of Cheung damdong Alice even i didn’t continue that drama in the half way because bore, i only see Lee Young Ah in Baker king

        • ryoko

          Me, too. Even though it was only an extended cameo, he managed to remind me all over again how much his acting can affect me. I was sad when his role in the drama came to an end. The scenes between him and MGY were so powerful.

  14. 14 alua

    I like the sound of it, I kinda dig the title in its frank simplicity and totally fresh faces for me, which is welcome!

  15. 15 Revy

    I am so watching this. Glad Lee Young Ah is getting more roles.

  16. 16 Miky

    First of all yeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee,at last Nam Goong Min is the lead and in a rom com…i like Lee Young Ah,has that chearfull vibe around her…the sinopsis sounds so cute and full of laught…can’t wait to see it

  17. 17 crazedlu

    ooh. sounds cute. ugh that would be so embarrassing. ha.

  18. 18 danna

    Awww this sounds so cute! Plus Nam Going min!!!

  19. 19 canxi

    YAY! Nam Goong Min! Hopefully this leads to many more lead roles for him as well because he totally should have them. And love Lee Young Ah, too!

    This premise sounds pretty fresh and different and having ten episodes isn’t bad either (especially since considering Monstar each episode will literally be movie length,lol). So, going to keep an eye out for this one!

  20. 20 tiffshin

    Excited for this!! Nice to have both of these stars back on the small screen

  21. 21 eli_n

    Aw, this sounds so cute! What are the chances of this being subbed? The premise seems refreshingly normal, which is something dramaland (and me) sorely needs these days..

  22. 22 al

    Nam Goong Min as a male lead! Finally! There’s justice in this world ๐Ÿ˜€

  23. 23 bandaid

    Oooooh! This one sounds cute. :)) I mean, I might be cringing a lot for the heroine, but I think I’ll enjoy watching it. :)) I used to watch from Dramacrazy but last time I checked, the site’s down.. (Haven’t watched anything since forever T_T) I wonder if it’s going to be covered by any of my usual asian streaming sites..

  24. 24 Anv

    I’m always game about Nam Gong Min.. Why doesn’t this guy get good dramas? I mean, really big broadcaster’s dramas? He is a great actor..

    The premise is cute! I’ll watch it if it ever gets subbed….

  25. 25 Noelle

    This kind of reminds me of an old movie. Seems like a nice change of pace and it’s only 10 episodes! Sweet.

  26. 26 Cee

    This sounds very sweet, in a classy way. Nam Goongmin is a sweetheart and Lee Youngah is just flawless.
    I’m anticipating this drama <3

  27. 27 piggy68gal

    Oh yes! I really really like Lee Young Ah, hope this show turns out to be great! ๐Ÿ™‚

  28. 28 Viki

    Oooh, sounds good. Adding this to my “to watch list” hehe…Lee Young Ah is a good actress! and the lead guy looks cute!

    • 28.1 Viki

      Wait, this is Nam Goong Min???!!! Wow, he looks 5+ years younger in that picture! I didn’t even recognize him!!! I love him in Can You Hear My Heart and he was in that Billionaire drama with Lee Bo Young

  29. 29 Perrie

    Wow, this sounds very original! I like that a lot!
    I’ve been missing Namgoong Min since Can You Hear My Heart?
    By the way, his first name is Min right? Not Goong Min?

    • 29.1 Rovi

      His last name is indeed Namgoong (๋‚จ๊ถ), a derivative from the Chinese surname Nangong (ๅ—ๅฎฎ, from Heibei). Others reduce their surname to only Nam (ๅ— ๋‚จ) for ease.
      And to add to their uniqueness, there is only one clan, the Hamyeol Namgoong clan (ํ•จ์—ด ๋‚จ๊ถ์”จ ๅ’ธๆ‚… ๅ—ๅฎฎๆฐ).

      Yes, his first name is indeed Min. I didn’t know it was that way, since I came to know him way back 2007 on “Rosy Life”, and thought his name was Nam Goong-min.
      (There’s even a Namgoong Gyeong-ho (๋‚จ๊ถ๊ฒฝํ˜ธ) at “Gag Concert”)

      • 29.1.1 houstontwin

        Thanks for explaining. Tracing family names is so interesting.

  30. 30 BAZINGA!

    LOL! I can already play out their first meeting in my head and let me tell ya… it’s hilarious.

  31. 31 korfan

    Oh wow, Namgoong Min!

    I swear, I haven’t seen him since Can You Hear My Heart, in which he was fabulous by the way.

    About time he gets to be the lead.

    I wish we got to see him more often.

  32. 32 DDee

    Ooh cuteness! Love on the dole. I hope there’ll be subs for this

  33. 33 NaHyun

    Yesyesyesyes love Namgoong Min and Lee Young-Ah. The plot sounds really cute too, definitely my cup of tea.
    Looking forward to this one!!

  34. 34 windsun33


    An original idea…

    I wonder if that is even legal in k-dramas.

    Already on my watch list.

    • 34.1 BAZINGA!

      It’s illegal. That’s why they’re only doing it now on a cable channel. LOL!

  35. 35 Sandyjoan

    I’m a big fan of Nam Goong Min. I saw him for the first time in One fine Day with Gong Yoo. Then I saw Birth of a Rich Man and Can you hear my heart. I hope Viki or Dramafever subtitled the drama. I also hope to be successful to given him the opportunity of a leading role in any of the major TV channels in Korea. Can’t wait!

  36. 36 Suzi Q

    Finally, Nam is in a lead role.About time!
    I like him, but he always plays the second lead bad guy with something stuck up his butt… I hope he loosens up.

    He is such a good actor so it sounds like a fun drama.At first, I thought it was CNBLUE’s Yongwha in the pic.Looks like his doppelganger.

  37. 37 Lilian

    Sounds cute and funny. Gotta say that the smaller channels are beating the biggies in terms of plot!

  38. 38 tayo

    He’s the LEAD !!! *happydance*

  39. 39 ladida

    Hooray! I’ve been on a re-watch binge lately. It’ll be nice to have a new romcom I can wholeheartedly love. This sounds like it’ll be fun and full of hijinks.

  40. 40 ninji

    I thought that name rang some kind of bell and when I looked it up, yup, he was that awesome boyfriend that Se-kyung had in Cheongdamdong Alice. Finally! Lead role!

  41. 41 soprection

    I’m not familiar with these actors but I like the idea of this show. It sounds cute and like it has a lot of potential for humour. I also really like the idea of a 10 episode drama. I always feel like K-dramas have a tendency to drag so I think that could be the perfect length.

  42. 42 rabbitsfortea

    Yay. Lee Young Ah is back to dramaland, albeit only for a short drama but still! Plus Namgoong Min finally gets the leading role. Let’s hope this will be fun!

  43. 43 Melon

    so true about ‘the sea of ghost-seers and high melodrama these days’, need to watch something light n funny instead

  44. 44 BAZINGA!

    Can we have him fall in love with her first, the second time, since he’s her first love and he thinks of her as his bad luck so he’s totally avoiding her? Just to prove that she really isn’t bad luck but that that is just how his life is or was. Then again, he was the one always falling for the heroine in just about every show he starred in so… shucks.

  45. 45 exquisitemelody


    AAAHH LOVE THIS!!! He does the broody so well. I would love to see him actually get the girl and be happy in the end. I wouldn’t mind see him being mean for a while…he’s so cute when he is!! I hope this gets subbed!!!!! I’m so excited!!

    Oh my gosh, I might be more excited for this than Heirs :O

  46. 46 MsB

    Finally a lead!! Must have been why he disappeared for 6 ep of Gu Am Heo Joon!

  47. 47 aX

    Wow, I’m convinced! I may actually just watch this!

  48. 48 Njaas

    WOW… finally Nam Goong Min oppa to be lead role..
    hope that any someone that sub this drama..
    can’t wait to watch it

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