My Top Five Favorite Korean Variety Shows
I'm a person that gets randomly obsessed with stuff I find on the internet. I'll find a video series or a topic and watch that pretty much exclusively for maybe three months or so, and then I'll find something else and move on to the next.
The list of former obsessions is quite long. Hannah Hart, The Try Guys, Grace Helbig, Dan and Phil, Sorted, Thomas Sanders/Vine compilations, dogs welcoming soldiers home, surprise pregnancy announcements, Buzzfeed Unsolved, Kids React, you get it. It goes on and on and on, and then I find the next thing.
So, now I'm in a new thing. And it's branched out to include other things somewhat related tangentially to it. What is it, you ask?! Korean Variety Shows! There are so many, you guys. So many. And most of them are on Youtube. So anyway, here in no particular order, are some of my favorite Korean variety shows (South Korea, obviously, not North).
1. Hello, Counselor!
This is a sweet show. It features a panel of hosts/comedians who invite various singers, actors and celebrities to join them as "counselors". Then, there are people in the audience who present some of their real life problems with their families. The panel asks questions and offers advice, and the audience votes to see if their problem deserves a prize. Most of the time it's very funny but also touching, because the families really do try to work through their problems.
2. Please Take Care of My Refrigerator.
It's hard to find full episodes of this one with English subtitles, sorry. This show actually seems like something that would be a hit here in the States. There's a couple of hosts, and then a few professional chefs, who bring different celebrities and their fridges on each episode. Of course there's some roasting about the bad food or takeout containers, embarrassing stuff, etc. But then, the chefs take the stuff from the celebrity's fridge and compete to see who can make the best dishes with the ingredients they find.
3. My Neighbor, Charles.
This is another sweet show. This is basically a reality show where the hosts invite a different family or even just a person on each week who is a foreigner living in Korea. It shows their life stories, how they came to live in Korea, and how they're adjusting to the culture/language, etc.
4. Running Man.
This one is mostly focused on games and competition. There's the core group of hosts, and every episode they bring on different celebrities to play games or compete on "missions" for varying charities. Sometimes it's a simple box game, sometimes it's a whole marathon, sometimes it's wrestling, it mixes it up each week.
5. Let's Eat Dinner Together.
Lee Kyung-kyu and Kang Ho-dong host this show, and that's a big deal because they're basically the equivalent of a Dick Clark/Ryan Seacrest of Korean TV. They are considered the "nation's emcee", you get it. So every episode, the guys head out with a different pair or celebrities and try to find a meal. Sharing food is very big in Korea, and it's considered impolite to turn down someone if they ask you for food. So the comedians and their celebrities literally head out with spoons, ring on random people's doorbells, and ask if they can have dinner with them. If they don't find someone who will let them in and feed them in a certain time period, they don't eat. They have to find someone who is actually eating dinner at the moment, not someone who just had dinner, for example. They have to catch them at the right time, or they have to move on to the next house. It's a very popular show that most Koreans know, so if he turns up at your door, you can't fake it, you see.
So there you have it, hopefully you will enjoy some of my favorite Korean variety shows, or maybe you won't. Maybe you don't care. But that's okay. I enjoyed this post, and that's what's important, right? Right.