We love our Oppas and we definitely love them dressed up as handsome, dashing Joseon Kings. Here are our most favorite portrayals of Joseon Kings by our Korean Drama Oppas:
Kim Jung-hyun as King Cheoljong of Joseon, the 25th king of the Joseon Dynasty in historical comedy drama Mr. Queen (2020). Cheoljong ascended to the throne in 1849 at the age of 19 after previously living in exile and in poverty. To portray history accurately regarding his living conditions prior to succeeding the previous king, King Heonjong, the drama Mr. Queen also depicted Cheoljong living in desolate condition in a fishing village.
South Korean comedy miniseries Mr. Queen, starring Shin Hye-sun as Queen Cheorin and Kim Jung-hyun as King Cheoljong.
Lee Min-ho in The King: Eternal Monarch (2020). This fictional monarch is nowhere in the history of Joseon, but this South Korean superstar was indeed dashing in his monarch attire.
South Korean drama miniseries The King: Eternal Monarch, starring Lee Min-ho and Kim Go-Eun.
Kim Soo-hyun in The Moon That Embraces the Sun (2012) as Lee Hwon, a fictional King of Joseon. This historical-fantasy drama is adapted from the novel of the same name written by Jung Eun-gwol, of a poignant love story between a fictional king of the Joseon Dynasty and a female shaman and conflicts between powers in Joseon court. It won multiple awards at 2012 MBC Drama Awards including Drama of the Year.
The Moon That Embraces the Sun starring Kim Soo-hyun and Han Ga-in
Do you know? Yeo Jin-goo starred as young Lee Hwon, Crown Prince of Joseon. He then starred as a Joseon King in the drama The Crowned Clown.
Yeo Jin-goo as young Lee Hwon, Crown Prince of Joseon in The Moon Embraces the Sun
Yeo Jin-goo as Yi-heon, King Gwanghaegun of Joseon, the 15th Joseon Dynasty monarch, in the drama The Crowned Clown (2019). According to history, he was deposed in a coup d’état and therefore the Joseon court did not give him a temple name like Taejo or Sejong.
Do you know? Lee Se-young, who starred as Yi-heon’s wife and queen consort Princess Munseong (later Deposed Queen Yu) in the historical sageuk drama The Crowned Clown, later starred as another Joseon character also based on real life, Sung Deok-im, later Royal Noble Consort Uibin Seong to King Jeongjo, the 22nd ruler of Joseon Dynasty.
Yeo Jin-goo and Lee Se-young in The Crowned Clown.
Lee Se-young and Lee Jun-ho in The Red Sleeve (2021)
Lee Jun-ho as King Jeongjo of Joseon in South Korea sageuk historical drama The Red Sleeve. Also known as Jeongjo the Great, the 22nd ruler in Joseon monarch was considered as a good king in his efforts to reform and improve the nation during his reign, despite his sad family background.
Lee Joon-gi as Wang So, the 4th prince in the Wang family, during the Goryeo reign of King Taejo in year 941, in historical drama Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo (2016). This drama was the South Korean version of the Chinese Scarlet Heart based on the novel Bu Bu Jing Xin. I personally think the ending of the South Korean version was better than the Chinese version. Unlike the Chinese version, the South Korean Scarlet Heart Ryeo didn’t get a second season.
Technically, Do Kyung-soo was a Crown Prince, not a Joseon King in his portrayal of Lee Yul in historical comedy sageuk 100 Days My Prince (2018) , but he was too dashing in his performance not to be put in this list! If you haven’t seen this talented EXO member off idol stage, you should! As his costar Han So-hee said, she couldn’t believe how cool DO was as an idol when she only previously saw him in his Joseon costumes during filming of the drama.
Which ones are your favorite?