I’ve decided to do a deep dive into lakorns. What does that mean? Well, looking into lakorns as a genre and finding statistical evidence to either prove or disprove common assumptions/questions about them.
Inspired by this article, I wanted to see if I could use the wonderful search engine at mydramalist as well. Each entry has genres that tell you what you can expect to see in the drama. You can also search for more dramas with the genres you like as well. And the tag system works similarly, only goes into even more detail. Say you like marriage and see the tag ‘marriage’ under a drama. You can click on it and see other dramas that have marriage. And some tags are even more precise, like ‘Arranged Marriage, Fake Marriage, Failing Marriage’ and so on. (Yes, I’ve sent a lot of time in those tags 😊😍.
So I’ve always had several assumptions and I wanted to see if my deep dive into lakorns supported them or not. These are some of the assumptions and questions I have and ones I’ve heard from Internet.
- Are all lakorns romance? In fact, are there any lakorns that don’t feature romance?
- There are a lot of slap and kiss lakorns. That wasn’t my assumption, but a lot of people seem to feel that way. So I asked the question. Are slap and kiss lakorns really a big portion of lakorns released each year?
- Are there more marriage dramas in lakornland than outside it?
- Do other countries have a lot of dramas with past lives/reincarnation story lines?
Methodology: I decided to proceed as follows. First, I would use three years of data and the most recent years because I assumed that most people would be more familiar with and have seen the more recent lakorns as opposed to older ones, so they are more likely to have tags. Undoubtedly, English subbed lakorns would have been seen by more people, so they would have better and more accurate genres. There’s little I can do about inaccurate data outside of seeing every lakorn made myself, 🤣, so I decided to just plow forward. By the way, I started looking into this in September 2019, so by now these statistics may be outdated as people add genres and so on.
In 2016, 175 lakorns released. 2017, 193 lakorns. Lastly, in 2018, 182 lakorns.
2016 – 175 lakorns, 16 lakorns (90.85) supposedly don’t have romance in them according to the tags, but I think it’s more like 6 or 96.57%. I looked at the lakorns without romance to figure it out based on pictures, synopsis and so on. Range is 90 to 96% of lakorns had romance in them in 2016.
2017 – 193 lakorns, romance played a part in all but 26 of them (86.52%). A closer look revealed the number to be more like 8 + of them. So we can say more accurately that in 2017, ~185 lakorns out of 193 lakorns (95.85%) had romance in them. So the range is from 86 to 95% of 2017 lakorns had romance in them.
In 2018, there were 182 lakorns, 164 of those were considered romance for 90.11%. (By the way, did you know there was a web series called The Bitch War (2018) that apparently was part of a tourist campaign for Southern Thailand? No? I didn’t either.)
Ahem. When I looked further into the results, I concluded that at least 5-6 of them probably had romance in them, so the real total of how many lakorns without romance in them at all in 2018 is probably more like 170+ out of 182 or 93.4. So ~90 to 93% of lakorns have romance in them in 2018.
What does this mean? Well, it means, romance lovers, welcome to lakornland! You’ll love it here! ❤ No really, according to my research, Korea dramas in 2016, 108 out of 168 dramas were romance (64%), 2017 had 190 dramas, with romance playing part in 114 of them (60%). And 2018? 151 dramas out of 197 which is 76%. So if you want to watch a romance, chances are much more likely you’ll get it in a lakorn.
What are some other questions you think we should address?