One of the most famous scenes in K-Drama is from 2004 SBS drama Lovers in Paris, where Park Shin Yang grabs Kim Jung Eun‘s wrist and shouts, “Why can’t you say this is my man!” while dragging her with him.
That was considered romantic back in 2004, but with the recent #MeToo movement and an increased general awareness of sexual harassment, this is no longer the case. Unfortunately, dramas are still portraying violence as romance, and fans are getting sick of it.
In episode 2 of Radio Romance, the Yoon Doojoon can be seen forcing Kim So Hyun onto his back and carrying her into his car.
While the scene can easily be described as a kidnapping, it is apparently deemed okay, or even romantic because the man cares for the woman out of worry.
Many Korean dramas still show kiss scenes where a man tries to force a kiss on a woman, even if she is trying to resist, such as in Our Gap-soon.
This particular drama was even sent to the Korea Communications Standards Commission (KOCSC) for review but passed, showing no issues for broadcasting.
In Another Miss Oh, a scene during which the Eric Mun breaks the window of a car in which Seo Hyun Jin is sitting in was highly criticized by viewers.
Enraged after meeting his ex, he drags her outside, and punches the car window while Seo Hyun Jin is still inside the car.
In Return, Bong Tae Gyu smashes a glass cup on a woman’s head and then hands her some money, telling her to use it for treatment and buy herself a bag with what’s left.
Netizens claim that the scene surpasses merely portraying an evil character looking for romance, and seems misogynist. This drama actually did receive a warning from KOCSC, both for its script and violent scenes.
Fans are claiming that scenes such as these should not be taken lightly for they could be sending the wrong message and should be changed:
“Dramas are a form of indirect education so it should’ve already been corrected. Korean dramas are too outdated and its caused by the distortion in views of sexual violence.”
- “These dramas are a problem because those male characters are good people even though they behave that way, but in real life, there’s no such thing. Dragging you by force and forcing skinship is nothing but scary…”