Lee Kyu-hyung is a South Korean musical performer and actor who made his acting debut through a minor role in the 2001 movie, “Kick the Moon”. But he later went on to star in various Korean dramas that further brightened his star in the Hallyu map. Check out the different roles he played over the years.
Hi Bye, Mama! (2020)
This Korean drama series features Kim Tae-hee as a mother named Cha Yu-ri who comes back to life five years after her death and must win back her place in the land of the living within 49 days.
Lee Kyu Hyung plays her husband, Cho Gang-hwa. He is a surgeon who had been struggling to cope with his wife’s passing, despite the fact that he already remarried. Even up to the present he could not bring himself to take on another surgery because the operating room brought back a lot of painful memories. It reminded him of how he failed to save her pregnant wife. When he accidentally saw the reincarnated Cha Yu-ri one fateful night, his life turned upside down yet again.
This drama showed Lee Kyu Hyung’s versatility in a heavy drama. He perfectly portrayed the brokenness of a husband who longed only for his wife and is now left conflicted that he can’t be with her anymore despite the miracle that answered his prayers. He relayed the right emotions when he learned that he had to lose his wife yet again. For all it’s worth, the man sure knows how to give a good cry.
So, if you are ready for 16 episodes of heavy drama that also shows us the value of the time we have with loved ones, this show is definitely worth binging on!
Doctor John (2019)
Cha Yo-han (Ji Sung) is a very talented and promising anesthesiology doctor who can diagnose patients’ conditions in just 10 seconds. Kang Shi-young (Lee Se-young) is a warm-hearted anesthesiology resident who listens very carefully to her patients. These two try to find the causes of the people with a mysterious pain in a hospital. The recurring theme of this series is euthanasia.
Yo-han spent three years behind for performing euthanasia on a dying patient whose pain he could not alleviate. He is often called “Doctor Ten Seconds” for his gift of diagnosing one’s disease very quickly.
Lee Kyu-hyung plays Son Seok-ki, a prosecutor who is against the practice of mercy killing. He was present during Yo-han’s trial and wanted to sentence him to ten years in prison. He holds a grudge against the doctor who ended the life of Yoon Sung-gyu, a murderer who killed Seok-ki’s son. He also suffers from stomach cancer. It was also shown that he is opposed to the death penalty, seeing it as an act that is nothing less than murder, albeit a legally-sanctioned one.
At the center of this story is Sangkook University Hospital, a teaching hospital in the heart of Seoul, where medical students train to be respected doctors in their specialties. Recently, it has been acquired by a corporation that is hell-bent on turning the hospital into a profitable business.
Life kicks off with the death of the hospital’s director under suspicious circumstances, which is then followed by the appointment of a savvy businessman Koo Seung-hyo (Cho Seung-woo) as the new CEO. Seung-hyo’s first order of the day is to close down three departments in the hospital that are bleeding money, and transferring the doctors from those departments to rural areas in South Korea. One of the departments which he plans to shut down is the emergency room, where Dr Ye Jin-woo (Lee Dong-wook) works at.
Lee Kyu Hyung portrayed the Health Insurance Evaluation Committee judge Ye Sun-woo, who is also an orthopedic doctor. He is also Jin-woo’s younger brother.
The series aims to emphasize that good healthcare should be available for all and not only for the wealthy. Otherwise, the poor could be sidelined if a hospital becomes fully corporatized.
“Life” offers viewers an exciting ride from start to finish. This show is a well-written and superbly executed series and is definitely something that Kdrama fans should watch. If you’re down for a very cerebral show, then this should be right up your alley.
Prison Playbook (2017)
Je-hyeok (Park Hae-soo) is recognized as the best relief pitcher in Korea. He is slated to fly to America. and sign a contract with a major league team. But in a twist of fate, he turns into a convicted fellow overnight. When he heard his sister screaming and saw a man running out of her apartment, the two got into an altercation with Je-Hyeok striking the man with a rock. Later, Je-hyeok receives a 1-year prison sentence for using excessive force. Having fallen hard from grace, he must learn to adapt to life in prison.
Meanwhile, Joon-Ho (Jung Kyung-ho) is a friend of Je-hyeok and works as an elite prison guard where Je-hyeok will be incarcerated. He waits for Je-hyeok’s arrival. Lee Kyu-hyung also plays a remarkable character in this drama as Yoo Han-yang, the son of a company chairman who is subsequently sent to prison for abusing drugs. He defined the character with a distinct nasal sound and ability to act as two different people, depending on if he’s on drugs or not. They call him a “Looney” because he looks and acts like a crazy person. With this role and all his antics, Lee Kyu-hyung attracted a lot of positive feedback.
Stranger: Secret Forest 1 & 2 (2017 & 2020)
In the first season, audiences were introduced to Hwang Si-mok (Cho Seung-woo), an exemplary Prosecutor who suffered from hypersensitivity to certain frequencies of sound. A corrective surgery made him lose his sense of empathy and social skills. While in the middle of an investigation on a murder case, he meets Police Lieutenant Han Yeo-jin (Bae Doona), who assists him in solving it. But as they start to unravel the mystery behind the murder, they also discover that their efforts are being continuously foiled and as they go deeper, it led them to a large corruption scheme between the Prosecutors’ Office and a private conglomerate.
The second season was set two years later, and it revolved around an ethical dispute between the Prosecutors’ Office and the National Police Agency. The former wants discretionary power over all investigative proceedings while the latter seeks for an autonomous authority. Despite their respective agencies’ conflict, Hwang Si-mok and Han Yeo-jin still teamed up to independently conduct their own investigation on a concealed case.
Lee Kyu-hyung played the role of Yoon Se-won, chief of the prosecution’s investigation team in season one. But in season 2, he makes a cameo appearance while he is incarcerated, giving fans some “Looney” vibes.
Tale of the Nine-Tailed (2020)
In this series, Lee Kyu-hyung reunites with Lee Dong-wook for a fantasy-themed drama.
Lee Yeon (Lee Dong-wook) was once the mountain spirit of Baekdudaegan who sacrificed his position as mountain god to resurrect the life of the woman he loved, A Eum. Lee Yeon now lives as a nine-tailed fox in human form. Without any luck yet in finding the reincarnation of his one true love, he has lived this way for centuries.
Meanwhile, Nam Ji-ah (Jo Bo-ah) works for a TVC station as a PD of documentaries. She is out to find stories on the supernatural, but she also has an interesting backstory. Back in 1999, her parents were involved in a car accident in Yeou Gogae. She remembers a man that saved her in that accident. One day Nam Ji-ah reviews CCTV footage from a wedding hall where the bride disappeared. She sees the man that saved her as a child walking out the wedding wall with a red umbrella, which turned out to be Lee Yeon.
Lee Kyu-hyung plays the Governor or Moon Bear, a former mountain spirit who also happens to be Lee Yeon’s best friend. He owned the Mirror of the Moon, one of the four gems of the four mountain spirits and he provided a crucial lead on the disappearance of Nam Ji-ah’s parents. Even though this was a cameo role set for two episodes (Ep. 6 & 15), Kyu-hyung played a memorable character.
Hwarang: The Poet Warrior Youth
This series focuses on the original Hwarang warriors of Silla who are young, elite, and known for being handsome.
Trouble is brewing within the court when Queen Ji So (Kim Ji-soo) ruled the Kingdom of Silla as regent since King Beopheung died. She moved heaven and earth to keep her young son Sam Maek jong (Park hyung-sik) hidden outside of the capital Seorabeol, away from enemies and assassins who are hungry to take his place.
When Sam maek jong come of age, nobles, citizens, officials and even Sam maek jong himself, have all grown impatient for Queen Ji So to cede power. However, the powerful nobles that tried to usurp the throne in the Kingdom continue to eye the throne and Ji So silently fears the consequences if ever she steps down.
In order to break the power of the nobles, who have grown accustomed to their privileges under the bone rank system, Ji So rounds up a new elite group, the Hwarang, that will cut across the existing power factions, and have them bound to protect Sam maek jong and the throne. These new elite group of young men underwent training and became close with each other; they are unaware that among them is their future king, Sam maek jong, and Kim Sun-woo (Park Seo-joon), a commoner with a secret that just might be as surprising for him.
Lee Kyu-hyung may have played a small role as Do Gong, one of the goons in the kingdom of Silla, but his performance was impactful.