More than Real, Korea’s Now Trending Reality Dating Shows
There is something more popular than K-dramas in Korea to the millennials this year. This is in a way more dramatic than K-dramas written by professional script writers. It is the “reality television dating game shows” that are trending once again in Korea. You might say haven’t we always had these reality dating shows? Like Netflix’s Too Hot To Handle or Love Island have been aired for seasons in different countries. But there are more spices added to the new dating shows in Korea that has captured Korean’s eyes.
1. Transit Love (2021)
Transit Love (환승연애) is the first original series by Tving. As you may have guessed from its title, it stars 4 different couples who have already broken up in the past. For three weeks, they are invited to a house to live together. There is a rule though, they cannot reveal who their ex-girlfriend or ex-boyfriend is until they are allowed to. They can either choose to date new one from the program or go back to their ex.
2. Change Days (2021)
Change Days (체인지데이즈) is another popular dating reality show in Korea. It’s produced by Kakao TV but you can also stream it on Netflix, so this may be a good news to international subscribers. Unlike other reality dating shows that normally cast only “singles” willing find a new partner, Change Days casted three “couples” that are on the threshold of breaking up. By spending time and dating casts that are somebody else’s partner, the casts decide whether to keep their relationship or start fresh with another cast.
3. Divorced Singles (2021)
Divorced Singles (돌싱글즈) originally aired on MBN, is also on Netflix. Basically 8 single women and men who have divorced have gathered in a mansion to find a new relationship. With its popularity on the first season, they have already started filming the second season and will be aired on 17th October. While Change Days and Transit Love are more targeted to people in the 20s, Divorced Singles is more popular among 30s since it deals marriage and divorce.
Other than these three reality dating game shows that have been aired in 2021, there are also other shows that have been very popular recent several years like Heart Signal (하트시그널) and Love Catcher (러브캐처). But there lies a difference to these three shows in that the casting of reality shows has become more candid and bolder. Bringing out real couples who are not celebrities or candidly speaking the topic of divorce hasn’t been common in the media in the past. By having non celebrities couples and casts, people relate themselves more to the program, reflecting their own relationship in real life. The stories and events taking place in the program are not plotted, it’s break ups and marriage lives of people next door, so it becomes even more dramatic than K dramas. You can always get the glimpse of these programs by searching them on YouTube, so if you are interested, you can check out some of the short clips on YouTube.