Can you imagine? Despite the limitations to filming amidst the pandemic, we still get to enjoy a lot of good K-dramas for the past six months? Now that we’ve gone past the halfway mark, what were your favorites so far?
You may still be reeling from new Hospital Playlist episodes but this month is also teeming with exciting releases! July offers mystery, thrillers, and a whole lot of excitement that will surely keep you hooked again every week. So if you want to make that commitment, here are 6 new drama releases for this month!
The Devil Judge – July 3
In this mystery-legal drama, Ji Sung transforms into Kang Yo Han, a judge in the highest court of the land in this dystopian South Korea of the future. He is a powerful judge whose courtroom drama is flashed for all the world to see through reality TV. In a twisted way, the legal process involves some sort of trial by publicity because viewers are encouraged to participate. Through this process, greed and corruption were exposed and punishments were meted out. In the middle of it all, Kang Yo Han rose to popularity, even earning the nickname “The Devil Judge” as he hands out decisions with no mercy.
However, behind that hero complex, he actually hides his true identity and ambition. Unfortunately for him, rivals are preying on his secrets, and one particular person hungry to find incriminating evidence is Jung Sun Ah (Kim Min Jung). Just like Kang Yoo Han, she is as cunning behind-the-scenes, holding close ties with people in power and those with influence.
In this chaotic world are two childhood friends who are out to seek true justice, but do they have what it takes to go against the Devil Judge?
This 16-episode drama is directed by Choi Jung Gyu and is written by a former judge! So if you want a fictionalised version of a lived experience, tune in to “The Devil Judge” as it airs on July 3rd on tvN at 8PM KST.
You Are My Spring – July 5
“You Are My Spring” is a romance drama about healing revolving around three people who live in an apartment where a murder took place. They go about their adult lives while holding on to their childhood innocence.
Seo Hyun Jin stars as Kang Da Jeong, a hotel concierge manager who moved into the old building wishing to have a fresh start. Kim Dong Wook plays Joo Young Do, a psychiatrist who wants to help others rediscover the will to live. He rents the space below Kang Da Jung’s apartment and uses it as a psychiatric clinic. Chae Joon, played by Yoon Park, is a CEO of an investment company. He also comes into Kang Da Jeong’s life and he seems to understand her perfectly as if he owned a manual for her heart. Eventually, these three characters get entangled in a tense love triangle.
“You Are My Spring” is written by screenwriter Lee Mi Na who also penned the 2015 drama “Bubblegum”. It is directed by Jun Ji Hyun of “The King: Eternal Monarch” and “Search: WWW”. So if you think this genre floats your boat, catch it as it premieres on July 5th on tvN and Netflix at 9 p.m. KST.
The Witch’s Diner – July 16
The month of July also offers a dark fantasy in its menu with the upcoming drama “The Witch’s Diner”. The plot centers around an unconventional restaurant that sells food that grants wishes in exchange for the customers’ souls.
Jeong Jin (Nam Ji Hyun) is a 28-year-old who is in the prime of her life—she had a great job and an amazing boyfriend. Jin felt that her life was close to perfect, but little did she know that her seemingly perfect world would soon come crashing down!
After a string of bad luck, Jin is now without a job, a boyfriend, and any clue on what to do next. Left with no concrete plan, she agrees to open a restaurant with her mother, but it didn’t take long for this investment to start going down the drain as well! With her mother leaving for the countryside, Jin is now left feeling like a failure again up until an unexpected encounter that is about to change her life!
Jin comes across Jo Hee Ra (Song Ji Hyo), a sorceress who has the power to grant wishes. She wants to use Jin’s restaurant and run it as her own. Jin agrees to this odd request which turns out to be a good decision as she sees the place suddenly raking in a lot of customers, and that is because Hee Ra offers more than just great food. The people who go there are well-aware that the Hee Ra serves wish-granting dishes at the price of their own soul.
While she is thrilled at the amazing turnover, Jin can’t help but question if the price of Hee Ra’s dishes are just a tad bit too much! Chae Jong Hyeop completes their team as the part-timer Gil Yong.
“The Witch’s Diner” is based on the 2016 novel “Manyeosikdangeuro Oseyo” by Goo Sang-Hee and it is set to air on July 16 at 8 PM KST on Viki.
Blue Birthday – July 23
Blue Birthday is one of the much-awaited dramas because it starred K-pop stars, Yeri of Red Velvet and Pentagon’s Yang Hong Seok.
This story is a fantasy romance drama where Oh Ha Rin (Yeri) gets a chance to revisit the past through mysterious photos left by her first love, who died on her birthday 10 years ago. This tragedy came after Ha Rin found the courage to confess her feelings to her male friend, Ji Seo Jun (Yang Hong Seok). Seo Jun ended up taking his own life, much to Ha Rin’s shock and horror. Ji Seo Jun has always been a man whose personality appeared bright and optimistic. But he seems to hide another side to him that no one can touch.
On the 10th anniversary of the incident, Ha Rin, who now works at an abandoned pet shelter, come across some old photos that Ji Seo Jun left behind. In some strange twist of fate, these photos transported Ha Rin back in time to that fateful day 10 years earlier.
Can Ha Rin finally get to the bottom of Seo Jun’s untimely demise? Could his death be really what it seemed? Or is there something more to it?
This 12-episode web drama is set to premiere on NaverTV on July 23 at 6 PM KST and August 6 on YouTube!
Kingdom: Ashin of the North – July 23
If there is anything that gets a lot of K-drama fans excited for July, that would be the return of the phenomenal zombie drama “Kingdom”. However, the anticipation is only heightened further as they release a one-hour “sidequel” with “Ashin of the North”.
For those who still haven’t seen the first two seasons, Kingdom is a Netflix Original South Korean horror series written by Kim Eun-hee. The story is based on the book Land of the Gods, which was also written by Kim Eun-hee. Since it debuted in 2019 it became one of the most popular non-English series available to stream on Netflix.
Now in the story, it was teased in the last season that despite removing the worms from the young Prince as a baby, at least one of the parasites remained in his system. It lay dormant until his brain had developed enough for it to take over. But for now, all that is known is that the worm carrying the infection has spread to the Prince’s brain. Taking into consideration it has been lying dormant for seven years, it may impact the young royal differently from other victims.
However, Ashin of the North focuses on the origin of the resurrection plant and the mystery behind Ashin’s identity. We may not see our favourite crown prince in action, but this sidequel can sure add more depth to the story.
“Kingdom: Ashin of the North” stars no less than the beautiful Jun Ji Hyun as the titular character, and it is set to air on July 23 at 11 PM on Netflix.
Police University – July 26
This drama is about a violent crimes detective Yoo Dong Man (Cha Tae Hyun) who boasts of two decades of experience in criminal homicide and cyber-investigation, but he now spends his time teaching at the National Police University campus. There he meets Kang Sun Ho (Jung Jin Young), a computer hacker who eventually becomes a first-year student at the university. Oh Kang Hee (Krystal Jung) is also a freshman who has no pretense, secrets, or grudges. She is a good person who is righteous to her core.
Together, with Yoo Dong Man, they form a team to jointly investigate crimes. Along the way, the young students learn so much from their teaching along with real-world experience, while the veteran detective also relearned a lot of things along the way!
Police University caps off our list for July, and you can catch it on KBS2 as it airs on July 26 at 8:30 PM KST.