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New k-dramas to watch in December 2022

Updated: Dec 16, 2022

It certainly is Christmas (or the year-end holidays) with k-dramaland gifting us with 20 TV series from a wide range of genres—crime thriller, melodrama, fantasy, romance, comedy, and boys’ love (BL)! This month, a Japanese filmmaker also makes his k-drama debut in Connect, two renowned writers make a comeback through The King of the Desert and The Glory, and a movie superstar returns to the small screen through Big Bet after more than two decades. Finally, four k-dramas resume with part 2 or return for a second season.

GwenchaNoona | December K-dramas & Shows (from left to right): "Connect", "Work Later, Drink Now 2," "Alchemy of Souls" Part 2, and "Big Bet"

Photos from HanCinema


Dec. 1: Recipe for Farewell

Respected actors Han Suk-kyu (Dr. Romantic) and Kim Seo-hyung (SKY Castle), star as a recently-divorced couple in this 12-episode Watcha Original series. Based on It May Be a Little Spicy Today, the memoir of writer Kang Chang-rae, Recipe for Farewell chronicles the final days of Da Jung (Kim Seo-hyung), who asks her ex-husband to cook for her everyday following her terminal cancer diagnosis. You’re going to want to have a box of tissues handy for this one.


Where to watch: Watcha/Viki (in select territories), Thursdays


Dec. 1: Oh! My Assistant

R-rated webtoon artist Seon-ho (Song Seung-hyun) hires Mu-yeong (Ko Chan-bin) to be his assistant, who turns out to be a fan of his work. Will the overqualified assistant help him with his art—and in other aspects of his life?


Where to watch: Viki, Thursdays and Fridays


Dec. 7: Connect

Renowned Japanese filmmaker Miike Takashi (Ichi the Killer) makes his first foray into k-drama. In this disturbing action thriller adapted from a webtoon, a man with self-healing powers (Jung Hae-in, D.P.) crosses paths with illegal organ traffickers. He ends up sharing an eyeball with (and the eyesight of) a vicious serial killer (Go Kyung-pyo, Love in Contract)—so the fight begins. Who will win in the end?


Where to watch: Disney+, Wednesdays


Dec. 7: Unlock My Boss

There’s a literal ghost in the machine and Park In-sung (Chae Jong-hyeop), a regular company employee, now needs to help the ghost find his murderer. This 12-episode ENA drama based on a webtoon about CEO Kim Sun-joo (Park Sung-woong), who finds himself murdered and mysteriously stuck in a phone as a ghost, also stars Seo Eun-su as his secretary. With a murder mystery and 10 billion won (USD 7.5 million) as reward money, this show will have plenty of excitement to go around.


Where to watch: Viki, Wednesdays and Thursdays


Dec. 9: The Forbidden Marriage

The king of Joseon Lee Heon (Kim Young-dae, Sh**ting Stars) has refused to find a second wife since his wife died seven years prior. That would all be well and good except for the fact that he has also forbidden his subjects to marry. Meanwhile, in order to get out of prison, commoner Ye So-rang (Park Ju-hyun, Extracurricular), claims that the spirit of the late queen resides in someone else in the palace. One lie turns into another, and before she knows it So-rang now has to act as though she is possessed by the late king’s wife. And now the king is curious. How will So-rang ever be able to get out of this one?


Where to watch: Prime Video/Viki, Fridays and Saturdays


Dec. 9: Work Later, Drink Now 2

Our favorite chaotically drunken female trio is back! Lee Sun-bin, Han Sun-hwa, and Jung Eun-ji reprise their roles as a tight-knit group of 30-something year old friends who love to unwind and share their sorrows after work over several gallons of alcohol. Based on a popular webtoon, the second season of this comedy series is bound to serve up more laughter, friendship, and love.


Read our review of Work Later, Drink Now Season 1 here.


Where to watch: Viu/TVING, Fridays


Dec. 9: Money Heist: Korea — Joint Economic Area Part 2

Back for six more episodes in the Korean adaptation of Money Heist, "The Professor" Yoo Ji-tae (Healer) and his gang of criminals played by Park Hae-soo (Squid Game), Jeon Jong-seo (The Call), Kim Ji-hoon (Flower of Evil), among others, attempt to rob and escape from the unified Korean mint.


Where to watch: Netflix, Friday (all episodes)


Dec. 10: Alchemy of Souls: Light and Shadow / Alchemy of Souls Part 2

Taking place three years after the controversial cliffhanger ending of Part 1, Alchemy of Souls: Light and Shadow, returns with more drama, politics, and of course, magic. Shaken by the unexpected turn of events, Daeho's young mages Jang Uk (Lee Jae-wook, Extraordinary You), Seo Yul (Hwang Min-hyun), Jin Cho-yeon (Arin), and Park Dang-gu (Yoo In-soo, All of Us Are Dead) return as darker versions of themselves. With Go Yoon-jung (Law School), seen mostly in flashbacks as the soul-shifter Naksu in part 1, stepping in as the female lead in this next chapter, will the Hong Sisters writing duo be able to deliver a satisfying conclusion to this epic historical fantasy series? We can't wait to find out.


Check out our review of Part 1 here.


Where to watch: Netflix, Saturdays and Sundays


Dec. 15: The Director Who Buys Me Dinner

New December 2022 K-drama: "The Director Who Buys Me Dinner"

Photo from HanCinema

Adapted from a webtoon of the same name, Min Entertainment Director Yu Dam (Park Young-woon, The King in Love) seems to be the perfect man, except that he has been reincarnated many times and asks newbie Dong Baek (Park Jeong-woo) for a date. He even exclaims that if they don’t date, they die!


Where to watch: other sites, Thursdays


Dec 16: The King of the Desert

From writer Kim Bo-tong, he of D.P. and D.P. 2, comes another bleak k-drama about five people faced with difficult choices. Will everything go away with enough money, or are there things that money should not even buy? Yang Dong-geun (Yaksha: Ruthless Operations) and Jang Dong-yoon (The Tale of Nokdu) head the drama and may come up against a mysterious CEO played by Jin Goo (Descendants of the Sun).


Where to watch: Watcha, Fridays


Dec 16: Fanta G Spot

New December 2022 K-drama: "Fanta G Spot"

Photo from HanCinema

The 10-episode mini-series stars Ahn Hee-yeon (How to Be Thirty), Bae Woo-hee (Business Proposal), Park Sun-ho (A Poem A Day), and Choi Kwang-rok (Green Mothers’ Club). A mature romance drama, it features women who want not only to do right but also feel right.


Where to watch: Coupang Play, Fridays


Dec. 17: Red Balloon

Looks like the ensemble marital/infidelity drama is here to stay. Seo Ji-hye (Crash Landing on You) returns as a mysterious private tutor, while Lee Sung-jae (Show Window) is a powerless husband who married into a successful family. Hong Soo-hyun (From Now On, Showtime) is a married jewelry designer who suffers under her harsh mother-in-law, while Lee Sang-woo (Sh**ting Stars) plays her dermatologist husband. Soon, they find their lives intertwining in interesting ways.


Where to watch: Viki, Saturdays and Sundays


Dec 19: Trolley

Trolley marks the return of Kim Hyun-joo (I Have a Lover) and Park Hee-soon (My Name). They will play a successful married couple who have their secrets spilled to the world.


Where to watch: Netflix, Mondays and Tuesdays


Dec 19: Missing: The Other Side 2

Too many deceased people have gone missing in 3 Gongdan Village, and it’s up to Detective Shin Joon-ho (Ha Joon, Insider) and his police crew to get to the bottom of these mysterious disappearances.


Where to watch: other sites, Mondays and Tuesdays


Dec. 21: The Interest of Love

Ah, love in the workplace. It’s a slice-of-life romance that sees four employees of Nara Bank, Ha Sang-soo (Yoo Yeon-seok, Hospital Playlist), An Soo-Young (Moon Ga-young, True Beauty), Park Mi-kyung (Keum Sae-rok, Youth of May), and Jung Jong-hyun (Jung Ga-ram, Love Alarm 2) juggle their lives, dreams and work in this JTBC drama. Will love bloom or will they have to admit that the interest of love is altogether too high?


Where to watch: Netflix, Wednesdays and Thursdays


Dec. 21: Big Bet / Casino

Veteran and multi-awarded actor Choi Min-sik (Oldboy) makes his small screen comeback after 24 years. We can all look forward to a high-stakes game in an action drama starring Choi Min-sik alongside Son Suk-ku (My Liberation Notes) about a casino boss who has nothing to lose.


Where to watch: Disney+, Wednesdays


Dec. 21: The New Employee

New December 2022 K-drama: "The New Employee"

Photo from HanCinema

A late bloomer, Seung Hyun (Moon Ji-yong, Kiss Goblin) scores an internship in his dream company. He meets the icy, good-looking Kim Jong Chan (Kwon Hyuk, Graceful Friends), who turns out to be his boss. The eight-episode romance series is adapted from a BL web novel of the same name.

Where to watch: Viki/Watcha, Wednesdays


Dec. 23: The Fabulous

Life is so much more interesting off the runway than on it! Seoul’s vibrant fashion world acts as a backdrop for Chae Soo-bin (I Am Not A Robot, Young Actors’ Retreat) and Choi Min-ho (Hwarang) as they and their millennial friends try to balance career, romance, and friendship in the eight-episode rom-com The Fabulous.


Where to watch: Netflix, Friday (all episodes)


Dec. 30: Island

After his critically acclaimed portrayal of South Korea’s first criminal profiler in Through the Darkness at the beginning of the year, Kim Nam-gil ends 2022 with this highly anticipated fantasy horror thriller. Set in Jeju Island, Island unites Kim with Lee Da-hee (Search: WWW) and Astro’s Cha Eun-woo (True Beauty) in an epic battle against powerful evil forces threatening to destroy the world.


Where to watch: Prime Video, Fridays


Dec. 30: The Glory

Blockbuster writer Kim Eun-sook (Goblin, Mr. Sunshine) reunites with Descendants of the Sun star Song Hye-kyo in this eight-episode Netflix series. The Glory is a revenge drama centered on a teacher hellbent on getting back at her tormentors from high school. Joining the cast are Lee Do-hyun (Youth of May) and Park Sung-hoon (Into the Ring).


Where to watch: Netflix