K-dramas, Crash Landing on You and the Korean wave in India
K-Dramas, BTS , BlackPink , K-pop , Korean Skincare - I used to hear all these terms from friends , social media and Youtubers ; Netflix frequently recommended me K-dramas and some of these trended in India for weeks.
"The Korean Wave has finally hit India", I thought to myself while randomly scrolling through the Netflix home page. I finally gave in and decided to watch the first K-drama I spot on Netflix. I started watching this popular K-drama called "Crash Landing on You" ; almost all the K-drama fans have watched this one , celebrities have recommended the show and the internet can't stop talking about it. I was curious and I binged the whole show in a couple of days.
"Crash Landing on You" felt fresh to me - I loved the North Korea - South Korea twist and specially the depiction of North Korea.
North Korean defectors helped in writing the script of "Crash Landing on You" so that the makers are able to present an accurate picture of North Korea.
Since, the internet is NOT flooded with content on North Korea (specially "fictional" content) , this part of the show was surely interesting to watch.
The soundtracks and the amazing outfits in "Crash Landing on You" couldn't be ignored ; too many stories were taking place at the same time - a love story , a revenge story , North Koreans illegally in South Korea story , a dysfunctional family story ; I might have missed a couple of them :P
However, these stories perfectly came together in the show. Each episode was one and a half hour long which is honestly TOO MUCH ; one hour episodes would have been nicer. I liked how the makers of "Crash Landing on You" did not give a quintessential ending to the show. I cannot lie, the show was addictive and also "BOLLYWOODish" in certain episodes. After watching Crash Landing on You , I feel like watching more K-dramas. (Suggest some K-dramas in the comments section, please )
The Korean wave ( or HALLYU ) has finally washed India , the pandemic gave people the time and patience to watch shows in another language , immerse themselves (virtually) in a foreign culture. Korean snacks can now easily be found in the local grocery stores ; who hates hot ramyun noodles with their favourite k-drama!
Korean skin care routines are also becoming popular in India. Face masks from Korean brands are flooding the markets. Indian Influencers frequently mention K-dramas, thousand-step Korean Skincare routines , South Korea "hauls" and the most ridiculous trend ever - MUKBANG
What is MUKBANG?
According to Google, Mukbang is a video, especially one that is live-streamed, that features a person eating a large quantity of food and addressing the audience.
Sounds interesting? Well, it doesn't. Watching these Mukbang videos regularly can trigger unhealthy food habits in individuals.
The pandemic definitely had a role to play in the sudden popularity of the Korean culture in India.
There was a 256 percent rise in the number of Indian users learning Korean on Duolingo in 2020.
Korean is the seventh most popular language on Duolingo, from a global perspective.
From Gangam Style to BTS, Parasite and Blackpink - the Korean "soft power" is spreading in India like wild fire ; if this influence is temporary or permanent, only time can tell.