If you think Korean dramas are just all about complicated love lines and poor-girl-rich-guy tropes, we'd say you probably haven't tried the right one for your tastebuds yet. There's a K-drama for everyone—yes, even for those who are into gory and deliciously bloody scenes. Don't worry, we did the research for you. Here are fan-favorite vampire dramas to add to your binge-watch list:
1. The Scholar Who Walks The Night (2015)
Lee Joon Gi's lesser-known sageuk came out a year before he was known as the great Wang So of the tragically beautiful K-drama series Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo. His performance as a guardian vampire in an alternate Joseon Dynasty earned him the Top 10 Stars Award from MBC Awards and it definitely cemented the fact that Joon Gi looks best in a hanbok. In The Scholar Who Walks The Night, Joon Gi is a vampire disguised as one of the king's court scholars. He frequents a library manned by a cross-dressing bookseller played by Lee Yu Bi who, coincidentally, began her career as a supporting character in the 2011 Korean sitcom Vampire Idol.
2. Vampire Idol (2011 to 2012)
It's old and it's crazy, but it's definitely a funny twist to the vampire trope we all love. Vampire Idol marries the fun in K-pop and the weird in fantasy K-dramas through a cable sitcom starring real-life singer Lee Jung. He plays a prince from planet Vampire (yes, vampires are technically aliens in this show) who descends to Earth in order to see a live idol performance. He gets stuck and becomes an idol himself along with his minions, and they all end up in a K-pop group called Vampire Voice. Want to know who played his minions? Hong Jong Hyun, also known as the evil prince Wang Yo in Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo; Lee Soo Hyuk, who played Dara's male lead in 2NE1's "It Hurts" music video and crown price Gwi in The Scholar Who Walks The Night; and Kim Woo Bin from School 2013 and Uncontrollably Fond.
3. Blood (2015)
Written by the same guy who made the K-drama masterpiece Good Doctor, Blood is a fantasy medical series about a vampire doctor played by Ahn Jae Hyun from Cinderella And The Four Knights and Beauty Inside. This good-natured vampire lives on blood packs because he vowed not to let his thirst get in the way of his mission to save lives in the best cancer research hospital in the country. But he falls in love with his snooty co-worker played by Ku Hye Sun, best known for her iconic role as Geum Jan Di in Boys Over Flowers.
4. Orange Marmalade (2015)
If you're into coming-of-age high school tropes and fantasy, this K-drama is the right mix for you. Orange Marmalade has a pretty unique premise: The existence of vampires is more or less an open secret due to a peace treaty created 300 years ago. They have also evolved throughout the years so that they don't have to rely on human blood for sustenance. But in modern-day alternate Seoul, vampires are still ostracized and this is exactly what Baek Mari faced when they were driven out of their previous town. Wishing to blend in with her human classmates and live a peaceful new life, Mari accidentally kisses the neck of Mr. Popular Jung Jae Min who happens to have a crush on her. Mari is played by AOA member Kim Seol Hyun while Jae Min is played by former child actor Yeo Jin Goo. BTW, Jin Goo also plays the titular role in the just-aired Korean remake of My Absolute Boyfriend.
5. Vampire Detective (2016)
Sucker for crime series? This is no CSI but it's definitely intriguing. Vampire Detective follows the story of private detective Yoon San. He suddenly turns into a vampire and gains a special ability which he utilizes to solve cases for his clients. This 12-episode show not only unpacks salacious crime cases but also explores the mystery of Yoon San's transformation and his past. Yoon San is played by Lee Joon from the now-defunct K-pop group MBLAQ, a group which includes Dara's brother, Thunder. He's currently enlisted in the military but you may remember him from his last drama, My Father Is Strange.
6. Hello Franceska (2005 to 2006)
Dubbed as the Korean Adams Family, Hello Franceska created television mainstays in South Korea. The show became a cult hit and was extended to three seasons from 2005 to 2006, and most of its cast members are now known as veteran actors. Hello Franceska is a comedy sitcom about a dysfunctional fake family of bloodsuckers headed by Franceska, a 500-year-old vampire. The titular role is played by Shim Hye Jin, South Korea's ultimate drama mother whose long list of filmography includes Strong Woman Do Bong Soon, Princess Hours, and Endless Love. Other casts include veteran comedian Lee Doo Il from Black, well-loved variety show MC Park Seul Gi, as well as actors Lee Kyun from The Three Musketeers and Jung Ryeo Won from Wok Of Love.
7. Vampire Flower (2014)
If you're looking for a quick and sweet escape, Vampire Flower is a mini-series that's right up your alley. This vampire romance drama only has six episodes and each one lasts for 10 minutes so you'll surely be able to finish it in one sitting. A lot of viewers likened the drama to Twilight because of its plot. Vampire boy falls in love with a human girl and they fall into a you-and-me-against-the-world whirlwind romance. K-drama newbie and former A-Jax member Seo Jae Hyung lands his first main role as an adolescent vampire named Louis while Kim Ga Eun (Because This Is My First Life) takes up the role of his love interest.
8. Vampire Prosecutor (2011 to 2012)
Another crime and legal drama that features a vampire lead character is Vampire Prosecutor. It garnered top TV ratings during its run in 2011 and even earned a second season which is pretty rare for dramas with fantasy tropes. The show centers on Min Tae Yeon, a prolific prosecutor who gets bitten by a vampire and turns into one. He then uses his ability to bring down bad guys in power while trying to live a decent life by sucking the blood of dead people instead of harming civilians. One day, he lands a mysterious case and finds out that the suspect is a vampire like him. Min Tae Yeon is played by Yeon Jung Hoon, who also played a prosecutor in East Of Eden.
9. The Vampire Lives Next Door (2015)
Okay, fine, we cheated. This one isn't actually a drama series. The Vampire Lives Next Door is a 20-minute short film featuring Park So Dam, known notably for being the adorable lead role in Cinderella And The Four Nights. She plays a dead girl who drowned and was sent to a morgue that also serves as a home to a vampire played by Ji Sung (Kill Me, Heal Me and Protect the Boss). They soon learn that their fates are comically intertwined and the plot twist is enough to leave you wanting for more.
10. Beautiful Vampire (2018)
Not a drama series either, but this Korean vampire romantic-comedy definitely fits the bill. The movie is a bit low-key but some fans swear by its lighthearted and funny storytelling. Beautiful Vampire is about a 500-year-old vampire named Ran who runs a fledgling dressing room in modern-day Seoul. She meets Lee So Nyun and finds her dormant vampire instincts being rudely awakened as they get to know each other. The vampire is played by Dream High 2 alumna Jung Yeon Joo and her love interest is played by Song Kang from The Liar And His Lover and the manhwa-drama Love Alarm.