10 Most Heartbreaking Scenes in Korean Dramas

Heeeeya, it’s summer! And since this means that I now have unlimited time in my hands, I finally decided to update my blog. For this blog post, I made a list of the 10 saddest scenes in Korean Dramas that I’ve watched for the past years.

Let’s start!

NOTE: SPOILERS ALERT! Read at your own risk! 

10. Reply 1997 – Because you’re you (Episode 10)

I love honest talks. Especially when the characters finally tell what they feel for another character. I didn’t shed tears as I watch this scene but there’s just a complete rawness to Joo Hee’s confession that hit me. His confession no matter how plain it is, struck my heart. It was brave of him to say the truth right in front of Yoon Jae’s face but it’s also sad because if you look in his eyes, he knows deep down that his love won’t be reciprocated. And the proof of course, was Yoon Jae’s laughter after the confession. He thought it was all a joke and Joon Hee just smiled a sad smile.

“The reason I like you? Because you’re that person. Because you’re you. Is there another reason besides that one? I’d rather know the reason if there was one. Then I could find a way to not like you. If I can’t avoid it, then there’s only one thing I want: to remain by your side, unchanged, for long time. Here’s to our love, that chills our hearts.” -Joon Hee, Reply 1997

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Joon Hee’s the guy wearing the plaid shirt

9. I Hear Your Voice – I’m so sorry but I love you, noona (Episode 8)

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Oh hello there tears, I didn’t notice that you were there. To be honest, the whole episode was heartbreaking. Starting from Hye Sung’s mother dying up to Su Ha’s disappointment to himself because he wasn’t able to protect Hye Sung’s mother from Min Joon-gook.

The scene was supposed to be romantic. I mean, they are in a (sort of) DATE. But Su Ha just wanted to continue their date to say goodbye to Hye Sung. He was convinced that the only way for all of them to be in peace is for Min Joon-gook to die. He knows that Hye Sung wouldn’t agree to his really stupid quest so he pretended that he is going to focus on his life from now on since he hypothetically ‘heard’ Min Joon-gook say that he is now satisfied to have killed someone both important to the two.

It was heartbreaking because you literally could see Su Ha’s love for her. He was ready to get even no matter how it takes. He made a vow to protect her but not just because he owes her. It was more than that now. And Hye Sung (God bless Lee Bo Young’s acting skills) was so confused. She doesn’t want Su Ha to leave yet she doesn’t want to admit this. After all, she shouldn’t keep him away from his own life, right? (If only she knows that he is off to kill Min Joon-gook. *sighs*)

8. Queen In Hyun’s Man- I checked the history book for you (Episode 14)

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It was so hard to pick the saddest moment in this beautiful drama but I decided to pick this one. There is something so heartbreaking in checking a history book only to found out that the man you are waiting for had been shot by arrows and declared dead.

Hee jin knows that she cannot do anything. She cannot turn back time to save Boong do and she cannot change the fact that there is more than 300 years gap between them. It’s the painful truth and she does not have the power to alter it. Boong do was the one with the talisman, not her. The only thing she could do is hopelessly cry.

7. The Master’s Sun- Are you really dead? (Episode 12)

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Gong Hyo Jin, you win! Who doesn’t love this woman? She’s a splendid actress and she never disappoints. This is the reason why when she cries, every single viewer cries with her. Add a fantastically written script with that and there you go, a perfect heart-wrenching scene!

When Joong Won appeared in front of her as she waits outside of the emergency room, it’s done. My eyes were producing so many tears. Despite the screams from my logical mind that Joong Won cannot die because hello, we have four more episodes to watch, I still cried. I mean, Hong Sisters, why must you make her see the ghost of Joong Won?! Why?!!!!!

“It’s true. You really are as bright as the sun. Have I died? I feel extremely wronged, but since my woman can see me, I can tell you this before going. Tae Gong-shil, I love you.”  -Joo Joong Won, The Master’s Sun 

6. You’re Beautiful- Why won’t you pick me? (Episode 14)

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As much as I love the pairing in this drama, I was a pile of tears when Jeremy confessed to Mi Nam. That was the most sincere confession ever created. Lee Hong Ki surprised me in this scene. He didn’t just cry, he ugly cried. And he did it while singing. Who does that?! Plus, we all know that unrequited love doesn’t only sucks, it also hurts. Big time.

“When I thought you were a guy, I was okay with it. When I found out you were a girl, I was okay with it. But if you like Tae-kyung hyung, I can’t be okay with it. Why? Why isn’t it me? I told you about my treasure bus, and I let you close to Jolie, and I was going to sing a song only for you. Why don’t you like me?” -Jeremy, You’re Beautiful

5. Shut Up: Flower Boy Band- I lied to protect you, you fool. (Episode 13)

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The things we do for the people we love. I wasn’t surprised that Ji Hyuk went on the Noble Idiocy path for Hyun Soo. He is just that kind of guy. He knows that Hyun Soo wants to succeed and he knows that the whole band is going to be a huge barrier between Hyun Soo and his dreams. So he decided to make him go away in the most heartbreaking way possible. Ji Hyuk told the guys that Su Ah is more important than the whole band–than their dreams, which of course flamed Hyun Soo. This wasn’t the Ji Hyuk he knows. But what’s done is done, and Hyun Soo left not knowing that Ji Hyuk said those words in order to protect him.

4. My Girlfriend is a Gumiho- Don’t disappear, please. (Episode 16)

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Goodbyes. They are really painful and My Girlfriend is a Gumiho gave us a whole new meaning to the phrase: painful goodbye. This scene is beyond painful. And Lee Seung Gi did an amazing job to show that to us. It was a long, long time ago since I’ve watched this drama but whenever I hear the song that they played during this particular moment, I tear up. It hurts that much. (And who honestly is happy to see Mi Ho leave? No one, I tell you. No one.)

“Mi-ho-ya, you must be crying, but it doesn’t rain anymore when you cry. No matter how sad you are, I have no way of knowing…because you’re not here anymore. Mi-ho is gone. Mi-ho is gone. Mi-ho…is gone.” -Dae Woong, My Girlfriend is a Gumiho

3. Cinderella’s Sister- Eun Jo-yah… (Episode 4)

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Making a strong character cry is something. But making a character who didn’t cry even when she was abused by her father or yelled at by her mother is more than something. Eun Jo in this episode became just a young girl who was left alone by the boy she really likes. It was bittersweet because after deciding to show even a little emotion to the boy, he leaves. Without any words, for that matter. (Okay, so he left a note but she didn’t receive it so that doesn’t count.) It was heartbreaking to see the stone walls that Eun Jo made crumble in this scene. She was hurt and betrayed and left alone all over again. So like a hopeless baby bird, she yelled to the air repeatedly, “Eun Jo-yah, Eun Jo-yah…”

“That person…I’ve never called him anything before. So, just like a cuckoo bird cries, ‘cuckoo, cuckoo,’ like a bird, I called out my own name as I cried.” -Eun Jo, Cinderella’s Sister

2. It’s Okay, It’s Love- Farewell, Kang Woo (Episode 15)

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Saying goodbye to a figment of your imagination isn’t supposed to be this sad. But it is. And this scene was heartbreaking because Jae Yeol knows that as soon as he let go of Kang Woo, he needs to face his past. He needs to start walking towards the very thing that he ran away from. It’s time to face the reality; time to finally admit that he is sick and needs medication. It’s time to let go his cut and bruised young self and accept the truth.

And who didn’t tear up while Jae Yeol cleaned Kang Woo’s feet and gave him the shoes that Hae Soo bought? It was Jae Yeol’s last attempt to take care of his younger self. His last attempt to give something beautiful to his younger self’s rough life.

1. Kill Me, Heal Me- What’s your name? (Episode 16)

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Of course, Kill Me, Heal Me wins. Seriously, what is more heartbreaking than this scene?! The whole drama revolved around Do Hyun’s identities and once it was revealed that even his name isn’t real, every single freaking thing falls down. (Best.Plot.Twist.Ever.) I mean, it’s one thing to discover that your father abused a little girl whenever you make mistakes but it’s another to realize that you stole the identity of that girl. That you somehow unconsciously helped in hiding her identity to the whole world. What’s more sad than to take away something that you are sure is yours? On the other hand, Ri Jin’s reaction is just purely painful.

They were victims, both of them. Victims of selfishness, hatred and greed. They didn’t ask for any of this. They didn’t deserve the pain that the adults inflicted into them. I cannot imagine how painful it felt to finally remember that people took away everything from you. Not just your innocence. But everything.

*  *  *

And there you go! The ten most heartbreaking scenes in Korean dramas. I know that there are a whole more heartbreaking scenes from other dramas, but these ten stood out the most in my opinion. This is all for now. I hope you enjoyed this list! 🙂

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