Ask a Korean! Wiki: How is Korea different from Korean dramas?

Dear Korean,

I was born and raised in France, growing up we had a lot of TV shows from the United States, and although they were fictions they somewhat gave me a good idea of how people lived in the United States. The first time I came to the US, I was actually surprised of how "accurate" they were and since I have been living in the US for many years, I still think that these shows were a good introduction to the US way of life.

So the question is: Are Korean Dramas a good introduction to Korean culture?

Celine T.

Of course, it is always a tricky thing to glean a country by the way it is depicted in a TV show. For example, although the Korean has visited the beaches of America many times over, he has never seen this type of thing...

In slow motion, too.
... ever happening. Nope, the lifeguards usually wear shorts and sometimes a shirt. And in case of an emergency, they usually run as fast as they can, not in slow motion.

But all jokes aside, TV shows often do provide a clue about a given country is like, particularly for those who have hardly any idea about that country. If you knew absolutely nothing about Korea, you will know at least something about Korea after having watched a Korean drama, however distorted and out of perspective that knowledge may be. However, the trouble for the Korean is -- he learned about Korea by being born there, and he never watches Korean dramas.

So the Korean will tweak the question a bit, and ask for the readers' input here. Do you watch Korean drama? Have you visited Korea? If your answer is yes to both, how was Korea similar to, or different from, what you observed in Korean dramas? The Korean is really looking forward to the answers for this one.

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