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The Daily Dose: Daily Oppas (Part 2)

Updated: Mar 10, 2022

As our Valentine's gift to all our followers, each day in February, an actor who is either the next big thing, or an established heartthrob whom we all love, is featured.

Ahn Bo-hyun | Kim Soo-hyun | Lee Je-hoon | Cha Eun-woo | Park Hyung-sik | Song Joong-ki | Kang Ha-neul | Nam Joo-hyuk | Park Hae-soo | Lee Seung-gi | Wi Ha-joon | Lee Min-ho | Lee Jun-ho | Ji Chang-wook


February 15: Ahn Bo-hyun (안보현), The Lust Cell

GwenchaNoona The Daily Dose: Ahn Bo-hyun, The Lust Cell

Ahn Bo-hyun has such a lethal combination of intensity and charm that his mere presence onscreen—even before he utters a word of dialogue—is enough to make viewers sit up, notice, and inevitably swoon.

And swoon we did.

His path to stardom has certainly not been easy. He began acting in 2014 and featured in several small roles, most notably in “Descendants of the Sun” (2016) where he played First Sergeant Im Kwang-nam (code name: Piccolo). But he still needed part-time jobs, even doing construction work to help pay for his living expenses.

Four years passed and things looked bleak. That was until he portrayed the saturnine chaebol heir Jang Geun-won in “Itaewon Class” (2020). His unforgettable turn as a slick villain who blended the persona of a reprehensible bully with that of the desperate son seeking his father’s acknowledgment earned him a nomination for Baeksang Best New Actor for TV that same year.

But before anyone could pigeonhole him as a bad guy, he did a complete 180 and even generously flaunted off his tanned muscles to woo Yumi (Kim Go-eun) in the semi-animated hit “Yumi’s Cells.” As the awkward yet adorkable Woong, he was again a premium blend of the lovable and smart boyfriend everyone wishes they had. Then almost immediately, he went back to his boxing roots for his role as a narc detective in “My Name." He even delicately handled the risqué scene with Ji-woo (Han So-hee). We hear his fans have still not recovered.

In real life, Ahn Bo-hyun is a proud softie despite his intimidating profile and radiant masculinity. He has appeared as a fun guest in several variety shows, where he shows off his impressive cooking, camping, and fishing skills. When he's not making us swoon in k-dramas, he can be found in his fun vlogs. As a certified YouTube star, he received the Silver Play Button for his channel “Bravo Hyun.”

With all the buzz surrounding him now, his fans can only expect more complex and adrenaline-pumping roles in the future with him as a bona fide lead. In fact, the next one is coming right up. This February 28, Ahn Bo-hyun returns in tvN's “Military Prosecutor Doberman" as an indifferent soldier-prosecutor.

Hold on to your seats, ladies and gents. There's more swooning to do.


February 16: Kim Soo-hyun (김수현), Our Love from the Stars

GwenchaNoona The Daily Dose: Kim Soo-hyun, Our Love from the Stars

Kim Soo-hyun can probably win a contest for actor most likely to wring tears from a rock. And we’re not just talking about his beautifully toned rock-hard abs. Over the years, he’s honed his talent to such a level that he can quite believably and effortlessly inhabit one complex character after another.

In his latest role as a college student wrongfully accused of rape and murder in “One Ordinary Day,” the cops take one look at his pretty face, and ask aloud how anyone could say no to that. Even if the role required him to tone it down, he could not hide the sensuality simmering underneath the doe eyes and sharp jawline. He has an appeal that toes the line between the everyday and the ethereal.

Yet beyond the pretty, his depth and finesse as an actor are also well known, ever since he starred in the teen musical drama "Dream High" (2011). He then steadily rose to superstardom after his hit dramas "Moon Embracing the Sun" (2012) and "My Love From the Star" (2013), winning awards and even featuring in both soundtracks. He has also done well for himself in the movies, featuring on both box office hits and in art films. It was only a matter of time before all that hard work would reportedly make him Korea’s highest paid actor in 2021. And if the accolades weren’t enough, this beautiful man with the soulful eyes also proved that he has the heart to match—he also donated 100 million won to support low income families during the COVID-19 pandemic.

His latest performances in 2020’s “It’s Okay To Not Be Okay“ and 2021’s “One Ordinary Day” are Kim Soo-hyun at his best—quiet, riveting, and powerful. No ordinary Hallyu star could have pulled it off like he did.


February 17: Lee Je-hoon (이제훈), The Hero

GwenchaNoona The Daily Dose: Lee Je-hoon, The Hero

The sexiest thing about a man… is his intelligence. And if it comes dressed in Lee Je-hoon’s intense gaze and softened by his disarming smile, then we’ll take it as a gift from the Hallyu gods.

Once majoring in Biotechnology, the young actor eventually pursued his artistic passion in the School of Drama at the Korea National University of Arts. There, he dabbled in student and indie films and played extras in several commercial films.

His talent couldn’t be hidden for long and with only a few movies under his belt, he was nominated for not just one but nine Best New Actor awards, from prestigious award giving bodies (Critics Choice Awards, Grand Bell Award, Blue Dragon Film Awards, and the Baeksang Arts Awards among others) for three separate films, and won seven of them.

With his natural good looks, he could have easily chosen the romantic-lead-instant-stardom path and heartthrob status. But looking at Lee Je-hoon’s filmography, one sees that he often chooses stories about difficult social issues. In “My Paparotti” (2013), he plays a high school gangster who wants to be an opera singer. In “Anarchist from Colony” (2017), he plays an independence activist. In “I Can Speak” (2017), he plays a civil servant who tutors an elderly woman who used to be a comfort woman during the Japanese occupation.

Even in k-dramas, Lee Je-hoon opts to play less than perfect characters struggling with their own humanity, but want to make a difference. In “Signal” (2016), he takes on dirty cops in the police force. In “Where Stars Land” (2018), he changes the lives of the people he meets in the airport where he works. In “Taxi Driver” (2021), he makes a living out of exacting vengeance on perpetrators of heinous crimes. And in “Move to Heaven” (2021), he becomes a reluctant trauma cleaner who cleans up after the dead.

He takes his role as an artist very seriously. He once said in an interview: "We are constantly thinking about how we should live and what opinions we should voice to create a positive change. As an actor, I believe the decisions I make about what projects to choose are also impacted [by such social phenomenon].”

If his intelligence shines through in his choice of projects, his talent is displayed in the vast range of characters he’s played, and his passion is revealed in his off-screen involvement in filmmaking. He opened his own entertainment company and recently released a short film that he both wrote and directed.


February 18: Cha Eun-woo (차은우), A True Beauty

GwenchaNoona The Daily Dose: Cha Eun-woo, A True Beauty

Cha Eun-woo is so utterly, so breathtakingly beautiful that people run the risk of obsessing over his looks and fail to notice that this man is also ridiculously talented. His elven features portray him as an ethereal, other-worldly being that was sent down from the heavens to shock and awe us with his beauty. All he needs to do is to look at you and smile, and I guarantee you will be living the rest of your life as a puddle of uwus. Fans, castmates, and even veteran MCs just end up gushing when he arrives.

His looks are so captivating that you may overlook that he’s actually a very talented and emotionally evocative singer, as a member of boy group ASTRO. It’s worth watching a clip of him singing Ben&Ben’s “Kathang Isip” during his 2019 Manila Fan Meet (fun fact: he studied in the Philippines for six months back in elementary!). He also excels at playing the piano and songwriting, which he demonstrated in the YouTube Originals drama "Top Management." He was also the ace player in the basketball reality show "Handsome Tigers." Seriously, what did he do in his previous life to warrant such an abundance of talent?

With all these things under his belt, you’d think he’d be arrogant—but he’s a shy introvert who even admitted to never having the courage to confess to his school crush. Most people may know him from his most recent starring role as tsundere Suho in “True Beauty,” but he’s been cutting his teeth as an actor as far back as 2014, even before his official debut with ASTRO. More seasoned fans will recognize him from “My ID is Gangnam Beauty,” his first starring role. Since then he’s been a regular in the k-drama circuit, gaining leading roles in shows every single year (“Rookie Historian Goo Hae-ryung,” “True Beauty”). He’s also a regular cast member in the variety show “Master in the House” / “All the Butlers": There’s no reason for this young oppa’s meteoric rise not to continue its trajectory!


February 19: Park Hyung-sik (박형식), The Boyfriend

GwenchaNoona The Daily Dose: Park Hyung-sik, The Boyfriend

From the way his eyes turn into adorable crescent moons when he laughs, to the intense gaze that can melt you when he stares into the camera, or the captivating innocence he exudes when his eyes go wide, it’s evident Park Hyung-sik was created by the gods with extra doses of irresistible boy-next-door charm.

And that’s before you even hear him sing. Endowed with what should be an illegal amount of talent, Park Hyung-sik inevitably finds success in all areas of his life.

After successfully debuting as a member of idol group ZE:A in 2010, he appears to have found his true calling in the world of acting. Following notable roles in “The Heirs” (2013) and the weekend drama “What Happens to My Family?” (2014-15), his breakthrough projects came: “Hwarang” (2016-17), where he met some of his closest celebrity friends, and “Strong Woman Do Bong-Soon” (2017), his wildly successful first lead role that earned him the “romantic comedy king” title. When it came time for his big screen debut—the legal film “Juror 8” (2019)—he delivered and brought home the Best New Actor award at the Korean Association of Film Critics Awards.

His real charm, though, lies in his affable personality. To the entertainment industry, he may be the multi-talented kpop-idol-turned-romantic-comedy-king. But to the people he works with on set, he’s a human vitamin, energizing any room he walks into. And to close friends in the Wooga Squad—with actors Park Seo-joon and Choi Woo-shin, and singers V from BTS and Peakboy—he’s family.

After a successful post-military comeback drama with the zombie thriller “Happiness” (2021), he’ll have his charm and talents out on full display in the musical k-drama “Soundrack #1” opposite Han So-hee, streaming on Disney+ next month. We're eager to be charmed once more.


February 20: Song Joong-ki (송중기), The Big Boss

GwenchaNoona The Daily Dose: Song Joong-ki, The Big Boss

When Captain Yoo Si-jin first peeked from behind hospital curtains in the first episode of "Descendants of the Sun" (2016), an audible gasp reverberated across Asia. In that brief moment, millions were instantly drawn to the combination of intrigue, mystery and warmth emanating from his gentle face and expressive eyes.

Over the next 15 episodes, a heady mix of Song Joong-ki’s gentle confidence, self-effacing humor, and sinister slant for combat proved to be irresistible for audiences who had long wished for a modern, sensitive male lead. Almost overnight, the boyish Joong-ki was catapulted from domestic heartthrob to global Hallyu superstar.

But way before that record-breaking k-drama, the smart (he holds a business degree from the elite Sungkyunkwan University) and athletic (he was a short track speed skater in high school) actor was already making hearts flutter. His charisma and comedic talent were on full display as a mischievous student in "Sungkyunkwan Scandal" (2010), as well as in the heart-warming rom-com "Penny Pinchers" (2011).

The following year, he proved he had serious acting chops behind all that charm, transforming into "A Werewolf Boy" (2012) and into a scorned lover seeking revenge in "The Innocent Man" (2012).

Naturally shy, and private, his co-workers all attest to how easy it is to get along with him. We see snippets of this fun-loving nature in his stint as the “brainy” and “enthusiastic” cast member of the hit variety show "Running Man".

In 2019, we saw him shed his youthful looks, and buff up to portray the would-be hero of a mythic ancient city in "Arthdal Chronicles". Who else can still be that attractive when covered in dirt and with unwashed hair?

Yet despite the ups and downs of his career, Song Joong-ki remains focused and unfazed, with his trademark charm still radiating from every non-existent pore. From mischievous Running Man noona-killer to now as the mob boss Vincenzo, he continues to help set the standard for modern Asian masculinity that is all at once desired by women, envied by men, and set as the impossible standard by mothers everywhere for their future sons-in-law.

We’re sure that even as a murdered conglomerate employee reincarnated as the chaebol’s youngest son in his next drama, Song Joong-ki will continue to win hearts everywhere.


February 21: Kang Ha-neul (강하늘), Wide Open Sky

GwenchaNoona The Daily Dose: Kang Ha-neul, Wide Open Sky

The indigenous name "ha-neul" is so unique in the Korean nomenclature that it is spelled with "乻", a character so rare that it isn’t even included in the official hanja registry for Korean names. "Ha-neul" is also an unusual case where the two syllables do not mean two separate ideas; instead, both characters are merged to produce only a single idea: "sky."

Given his heart, his range of talents, and his incredible humility, Kang Ha-neul seems to have no trouble living up to the infinite possibilities of his name.

Kang Ha-neul broke the k-drama leading man mold with his portrayal of Hwang Yong-sik, the adorkable country bumpkin cop in 2019’s "When the Camellia Blooms"—his first leading drama role and military comeback project. WTCB was both a wild critical and commercial success, for which he earned numerous acting awards, including the highly coveted Baeksang award. Prior to this, he had already impressed and charmed TV audiences with his performances in "Misaeng" (2014) and "Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo" (2016), and established himself as a versatile young Chungmuro star, winning acclaim for his roles in quiet films like “Dongju: Portrait of a Poet” (2016) and "Forgotten” (2017) while also headlining such huge box office hits as “Twenty” (2015) and "Midnight Runners" (2017). His most recent movie, “The Pirates: The Last Royal Treasure” is currently reigning over the box office in South Korea, and he has two dramas and one movie lined up for this year.

His success in k-drama and in cinema, impressive they may be for someone so young, is only half of his accomplishments. Many are also surprised to learn that Ha-neul is also a musical actor, and a very successful one at that. With a folk singer for a father and his own degree in theater, he has starred in an impressive number of Korean musicals, and is known to play the guitar at the behest of friends.

With his relentless work ethic, quiet intelligence, and easy-going demeanor, Kang Ha-neul is a sky full of stars and we’re enjoying the heavenly view.


February 22: Nam Joo-hyuk (남주혁), The Heartthrob

GwenchaNoona The Daily Dose: Nam Joo-hyuk, The Heartthrob

Nam Joo-hyuk’s perfectly chiseled jawline could have rightly earned a modeling contract all by itself. So, for that matter, could his expressive eyes that can draw you in for hours, and his manly hands that look strong enough to build you a homestead with nothing but a Swiss Army knife and duct tape. But this 6’1" model-turned-actor is truly greater than the sum of his parts as he has made audiences fall in love with the characters he plays on screen.

Master of the micro-gesture, Nam Joo-hyuk acts literally down to his fingers, as most fans of the k-drama "Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo" (2016) and "Start-Up" (2020) can attest. Add to that is his boyish appeal that instantly makes him boyfriend fanfic material, and you’ve got a recipe for industry success. When he smiles, you smile. When he laughs, you laugh. When he cries, you want to have him crawl into your lap for some cuddle time.

The effect is magnified on the big screen, where his literally larger-than-life characterizations draw you in and make you a willing hostage for the next two hours. His efforts in the historical film "The Great Battle" (2018) earned him several nominations for Best New Actor, and even won him a few awards.