It has been around 10 months since I’ve made the list of K-varieties to watch for 2014. Hence, it is time for a new list, biased in April 2015! Please do read the first part before reading this! Once again, The shows that I’ll be listing are currently running on the Korean TV channels. The information of the shows are mostly from Wikipedia, while I’ll add on my own comments/opinions and ratings of the show.
1. Running Man
I believe this show has to be on this list no matter what, because it is so well known, even if you’re not a fan of Kpop. And even though it is not as interesting as compared to the past, when the show is still new, it is still a show that I will watch every week once the episode is being subbed. The most recent episode stars FTIsland Hongki, CNBlue Yonghwa and Jung II Woo gets a little more interesting as the games are suggested by fans from around the world. And the first game was from a Singaporean fan, with the well-known, “What time is it Mr. Big bad wolf”. The episode ends with the legendary Name-tag tearing game which was missed by the global fans.
2. Real Man
Real Man had undergone a total change in their casts, which was quite a pity because I was looking forward to Henry. From the initial, Seo Kyug Suk, Kim Soo Ro, Sam Hammington, Park Hyung sik, Park Gun Hyung,Chun Jung Myung, K.Will, and Henry, the casts have been changed to: Im Won-hee, Kim Young-chul, Sam Kim, Kim Seung-hyun, Lee Kyu-han, Jung Gyu-woon, Kangin, Sleepy, Sam Okyere, Youngmin, Kwangmin, Jo Dong-hyuk & HighTop. Unlike Season 1 where the guys are all in different batches, Season 2 gathers all of the current casts except for Donghyuk and Hightop to enter the military in the same batch. There was also the female special, season 1 and season 2, where the female artistes go through the same treatment as the male casts. I personally think that season 1 was more interesting than the second season.
3. Superman is Back
This show is getting hotter and hotter due to the kids’ cuteness, growth, everything. The twins and triplets are the ones who set the Noona’s giggling and coo-ing at their cuteness, be it the citizens who’ve met them or the viewers watching them from miles away. Sarang is no longer cute but she’s getting prettier as the episodes goes by. The newest member of the show is Uhm Ji-on, daughter of Uhm Tae Woong, making Ji On the new mankae of the show after the twins. This show is a must-watch for me every week too.
4. Dancing 9
Yay, dancing 9 is back! Having won a season each, Red Wings and Blue Eye are back for a final match which will determine the final winner for the whole Dancing 9 show. In this season, instead of finding new dancers from the public, they are finding their past dancers in each team from the past two seasons. And including the MVP of each team, there is also another member added. So technically, there are 11 dancers per team. In this season, the losers of the first round will have 2 members eliminated, making the next round 11:9 dancers. The team who wins 4 rounds out of 7 will be the final winner. I think this will be the most exciting season of all, since only the best of the best makes it into this season. Even though not all of my favorite dancers are inside, but most of them are and the dancers are really very strong. Unlike the past seasons, I still cannot make my decision on which team I would like them to win. I like Red Wings’ masters but I personally like Blue Eye dancer more.
5. Crime Scene
Crime Scene (Hangul: 크라임씬) is a South Korean variety program with Hong Jin-ho, Park Ji-yoon, NS Yoon-G, Jun Hyun-moo, Lim Bang-geul, and Kang Yong-suk as the hosts for its first season. The second episode has hosts of Jang Jin, Jang Dong-min, Hani,Hong Jin-ho, and Park Ji-yoon. At the start of the game, the players (both recurring cast members and guests) are introduced to the “Crime Scene”, which is a mockup of a murder scene replicated on a stage area, and are tasked with figuring out who the murderer is. Upon discovering the crime scene, the players are given the “case briefing”, which includes a summary of events that occurred before the murder and a list of the possible suspects. Immediately afterwards, each player chooses a suspect to roleplay as for the remainder of the game. The players are then given more detailed information about the suspect they are respectively portraying, including the suspect’s personality, whereabouts during the crime, relationship to the other suspects, and (in the case of the murderer) evidence that can be used against them.
After the Final Criminal Vote, the player who receives the most votes is “arrested” and locked in a makeshift prison, and the players who voted for that person are revealed. If the arrested player is the criminal, everyone who voted for that player receives a bag of gold coins. However, if the arrested player is not the criminal, the actual criminal wins all of the gold coins that the other players would have won. This show is also a interactive show, where viewers can cast their votes on which host/guest is the suspect. This show requires some logic and IQ, if not some plot for the crime scene.
6. A Style for You
Following “A Song for You”, “A Style for You” is hosted by HeeChul, Hara, Bora and Hani which is a fashion related show. The hosts/guests on the show will offer viewers beauty know-how and also take them through seasonal trends, and also offer style advice and highlight key fashion and beauty must-haves. For those who are interested in K-fashion, or simply Hani’s Make up, do watch this show! (PS. I’ll never understand Heechul’s fashion style)
7. Fluttering India
Where the casts Kyuhyun, Minho, Sunggyu, Jonghyun (CNBlue) and Suho heads to India, where all of them has not been there before even though they’re Kpop idols. Even Kyuhyun, and thus he confirmed that the rest has not headed to India in the first episode. (His logic.)
The program, produced by Lee Ye Ji of the “Hello Counselor” fame for KBS 2TV, revolves around the cast members’ interactions with the people in India and the challenges faced by them, such as language barriers.
“It’s a program that was planned as a series. But it was so hard to coordinate the members’ schedules. As they say, it’s hard to even catch a meal with each other and it’s the dream of the ‘Fluttering’ series that these same members would stay on,” the producer said, according to Soompi.
Again, there are much more variety shows, 2D1N, Weekly Idol, Infinity Challenge, etc. The above listed are the shows that I watch frequently and are still running.