New Upcoming K-Dramas To Watch In May 2024

By Sandi Thompson
Published: April 26, 2024
May 2024 K-Drama Release Schedule
The 8 Show | Image via Netflix

The May 2024 K-Drama list is packed with so many interesting-looking shows, it will be hard to choose. I for one might have to add ALL of them to my watchlist. How am I expected to pick between these romcoms, mysteries, and slice-of-life dramas, especially when they star some of the best actors and actresses in K-entertainment? For that reason, I have listed the reasons why each one is going on my May watch agenda, and maybe it will help you too.

Still having trouble choosing? Send me a note on X at @SandiRSC18, and I would be happy to help with this drama list or any already aired K-Dramas.

Many thanks to MyDramaList for providing the synopsis for each drama.

Frankly Speaking

A typically polite and respectful newscaster loses his tact after a freak accident.

Genre: Comedy, Romance

Cast: Go Kyung Pyo, Kang Han Na, Joo Jong Hyuk

Episodes: 12

Release Date: May 1

Why watch: Go Kyung Pyo is a master at straight-faced physical comedy (he stole the show as the stoic relationship client in Love in Contract). And if her role in My Roommate is a Gumiho is any indication, Kang Han Na in her first romcom main lead should seal the deal. Trailers seem to indicate a strong comedy focus.

The Atypical Family

A family blessed with superpowers loses them when they undergo typical human maladies of depression, insomnia, bulimia, and smartphone addiction.

Genre: Action, Psychological, Romance, Fantasy

Cast: Jang Ki Yong, Chun Woo Hee

Episodes: 12

Release Date: May 4

Why watch: Superhero K-Dramas are becoming more and more common, and the ones that fare best lean heavily into the emotional connection. (Critically-acclaimed Moving comes to mind here.) This drama seems to set the stage for such an impactful watch. Jang Ki Young, fresh off his military leave, is virtually unrecognizable as a depressed superhero.

Begins Youth Part 2 and 3

The continuation of Begins Youth, which debuted on April 30, about seven boys who learn about life as they come together and face hardships. Parts 2 and 3 expand on the storyline fans have seen throughout BTS’ music videos and the Save Me webtoon.

Genre: Life, Youth, Fantasy

Cast: Seo Ji Hoon, Noh Jong Hyun, Ahn Ji Ho, Seo Young Joo, Kim Yoon Woo, Jung Woo Jin, Jeon Jin Seo

Episodes: 4 each

Release Date: May 7 and May 14

Why watch: With all seven members of BTS doing their military duty, this long-awaited drama based loosely the BTS Universe is a gift.

The Midnight Romance in Hagwon

A man returns to his former tutoring academy, this time as an instructor working alongside his unrequited first love.

Genre:  Comedy, Romance, Life, Melodrama

Cast: Jung Ryeo Won, Wi Ha Joon, So Ju Yeon

Episodes: 16

Release Date: May 11

Why watch: Wi Ha Joon as a romantic lead has been on fans’ wishlists since his near-misses in some of his latest dramas (Little Women, The Worst of Evil). The drama is taking the place of Queen of Tears on its respective South Korean channel, so it will provide a nice follow-up to keep the K-Drama romance vibes going on the weekend.


The Traffic Crime Investigation Team looks into unusual crimes involving vehicle and traffic incidents.

Genre:   Mystery, Comedy, Action, Thriller

Cast: Lee Min Ki, Kwak Sun Young, Heo Sung Tae, Lee Ho Chul, Choi Moon H

Episodes: 12

Release Date: May 13

Why watch: Sometimes you want your crime dramas fun and loud, with car stunts aplenty, and the aptly-named drama might be what you’re looking for.  Lee Min Ki is back, playing another straight-laced genius cop after a similar role in Behind Your Touch.

Dare to Love Me

A disciplined Confucious scholar and village heir meets an ambitious but underestimated art teacher.

Genre:  Comedy, Romance

Cast:  Kim Myung Soo, Lee Yoo Young

Episodes: 16

Release Date: May 13

Why watch: Pure romcoms are a treat when they come along, and Dare to Love Me appears to meet this description. Tropes abound by the truckload in this setup, with two opposite personalities with different goals than their current job positions allow, meeting each other in the unlikeliest of places. Hijinks ensue.

Uncle Samsik

A friendship grows amongst struggle during the turbulent 1960s.

Genre:  Historical, Business

Cast: Song Kang Ho, Byun Yo Han, Lee Kyu Hyung, Jin Ki Joo, Seo Hyun Woo

Episodes: 16

Release Date: May 15

Why watch: Song Kang Ho (Parasite) headlines his first K-Drama ever after a highly successful 28-year film career. This Disney drama, with its note-worthy cast in a period piece typically not seen in K-Dramas, seems poised to establish itself as an epic drama.

The 8 Show

Eight desperate people play a reality game show where they must all survive 100 days in an eight-story concrete bunker. Should they succeed, they split 44.8 billion won equally. However, all daily survival necessities come out of that amount, at 1000 times their cost.

Genre:  Thriller, Mystery, Psychological

Cast: Ryu Jun Yeol, Chun Woo Hee, Park Jeong Min, Lee Yeol Eum, Park Hae Joon, Lee Joo Young, Moon Jung Hee, Bae Sung Woo

Episodes:   8

Release Date: May 17

Why watch: It is so tempting to label this Netflix death game-adjacent show as a Squid Game wannabe, especially with so many obvious similarities between them. While both dramas have financially-strapped contestants battling it out amongst confined spaces with similar whimsical touches, The 8 Show seems to have a decidedly more absurd lens. With the “Psychological” genre tag on its mdl show page, I am hoping for a more thoughtful watch than its more action-driven precursor.

Bittersweet Hell

A famous psychologist must team up with her novelist mother-in-law to fight an unknown blackmailer.

Genre:  Thriller, Mystery, Comedy

Cast: Kim Hee Sun, Lee Hye Young, Kim Nam Hee, Yeonwoo

Episodes: 12

Release Date: May 24

Why watch: Dark comedies can be tricky to navigate, but Bittersweet Hell by its name alone seems to indicate we are in for a good time. Two frenemies must come together against a blackmailing threat of several of their family members, who probably have what’s coming to them.


An ace detective in the narcotics division investigates the mysterious death of a friend and his unreliable friendship circle in the aftermath of a 5 billion won insurance payout.

Genre:   Thriller, Mystery, Crime

Cast: Ji Sung, Jeon Mi Do, Kim Kyung Nam, Kwon Yool

Episodes: 16

Release Date: May 24

Why watch: Two acting pros Ji Sung (The Devil Judge) and Jeon Mi Do (Hospital Playlist) headline the month’s only crime thriller drama that seems to setting itself up with plenty of twists to make the weekly wait for the next episodes difficult. At one point in the drama, Ji Sung’s character wakes up unexpectedly addicted to drugs (a bit like his Defendant character, but with drugs instead of prison), so stakes are legitimately high in this setup.

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