We’ve heard some rumblings of Netflix getting into the Korean drama game with Signal writer Kim Eun-hee’s next drama Kingdom, but the first official original Korean drama series from the online streaming platform has been announced as an adaptation of the webtoon Love Alarm. The popular youth romance webtoon is about a fantasy phone app that notifies you if someone within a ten-meter radius likes you. As if high school weren’t awkward enough as it is?
Love Alarm is a current webtoon series by manhwa creator Chun Gye-young, of Pretty Man, The Girl in High Heels, Audition, and Ungplugged Boy, among others. The romance, a love triangle between the heroine and two boys who like her, is complicated by the existence of a phone app that rings an alarm every time a person who likes you is within ten meters. The characters are familiar archetypes: The heroine is a hardworking everygirl, the male lead is a tsundere type who’s cold on the outside and warm on the inside, and his best friend is the sweet, classic second lead who ends up becoming his buddy’s rival in love.
Netflix is planning to adapt the webtoon into a 12-episode Korean drama, and will release all of the episodes at once, as they usually do with other original dramas that they produce. Former CJ producer Lee Jae-moon (who worked on Misaeng and Signal) is producing, and the series is being planned for a 2018 release, to over 190 countries.
I’ll be curious to see who comes aboard to write and direct, and how they’ll cast it, or even just the format, since this drama will be produced and distributed entirely outside the normal broadcasting system. Here’s hoping for some experimentation, and a chance for drama-makers to broaden their horizons.
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