Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo: A Feel-Good Youth Romance Drama (Review)


Overall Rating 

Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo is a youth sports romance drama series aired every Wednesdays and Thursdays on MBC network starting November 16, 2016 to January 11, 2017.

Though the drama series was considered a failure gaining only single-digit viewership ratings below 5 percent in South Korea, it obviously gained a lot of attention from other countries in Asia as support from different social media platforms (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube) poured into the show and the lead casts even gained more followers in their Instagram accounts than before because of the show. I won't forget how they delivered each scenes with so much eye candy pastel cinematography plus amazing, makes you want to sing official soundtracks--( You can the beautiful OSTs in this YouTube channel, click here.)

Nam Joo Hyuk's Instagram


A photo posted by 남주혁 (@skawngur) on

Lee Sung Kyung's Instagram

오늘밤 만나요❤️ #역도요정김복주

A photo posted by 이성경 (@heybiblee) on

What I liked about the drama is that the drama itself is not too heavy and it makes you feel good. Since it is a youth drama maybe that's why it was created to make you feel that way. It is unlike other dramas which involves a lot of crying and emotions poured in for you to relate but with this, you feel good and you laugh almost all the time. ​

The romance is purely very cute and wholesome. In some  levels, I wish I would have a boyfriend like Joon Hyung. It will really make you feel like that as you giggle about the romance between Kim Bok Joo and Joon Hyung. ​

Finally, dramagoers were showed a female lead who did not went through unrealistic transformation in order to attract her love interest instead it’s they way she is that made her beau loved her.

Finally, one male lead who is kind and supportive to his girlfriend and one who’s not afraid to cry in front of his love interest and show his weakness.

Finally, female bonding and friendship that have authentic habits and rituals. A solid girl friendship that the girls were not hesitant towards each other because of their family background.

Kisses that weren’t awkward and seemed natural, casts that were too authentic and very natural, really realistic, this drama really brings so much to my KDrama feels.

I find it very light and good for me as Kim Bok Joo is not a heroine, Joon Hyung is not a hero or some chaebol heir to save the damsel in distress. They were their own hero.

The realistic story, the characters, the set, they were all good and also good for the heart. I don’t think I can even move on easily from this drama. Komawo!

Let’s meet the two lead cast:

Lee Sung Kyung as Kim Bok Joo​

I like how Sung Kyung portrayed her role in this drama. According to plot synopsis, she is a natural gifted weightlifter. She is warm and will do anything for her family and friends. She works hard to become one of the best weightlifter in Korea and aims to join the weightlifting national team. 

There are different sides of Kim Bok Joo in the drama wherein Sung Kyung portrayed it on point.​

A serious athlete

A good friend. Swag!

A jealous girlfriend. Aigoo!

​Kim Bok Joo, a good eater

Well, my point is that I love the drama because it feels good to see someone so natural when acting. I felt like Sung Kyung wasn't even need to try acting in order to accomplish the scenes. I totally love her and she is so cool! Swag! 

Nam Joo Hyuk as Jung Joon Hyung

In order to balance, the cool sporty chic personality, Nam Joo Hyuk's portrayal of Joon Hyung as a talented swimmer with playful personality balances their chemistry. Joon Hyung developed a trauma when he was left by his biological mother for another family. He grew up in his aunt and uncle's home and he considered them his own family. Though he is playful, he has his own  struggles especially about the idea of being abandoned by his own biological mother. 

He portrayed the boy-next-door aura in the drama but is head over heels with Bok Joo. Sweet!​

The clingy boyfriend

A very good swimmer and athlete

The kind and obedient nephew/son 

I'm a bit surprised to see how Nam Joo Hyuk developed his acting so much like,  I don't mean to say that he's not a good actor but from "Cheese in the Trap" to "Scarlet Heart Ryeo" and now, he really did develop more. His facial expressions are more convincing and are great assets of him when acting, plus point because he is so handsome. 

Other casts members:

Lee Jae Yoon as Jung Jae Yi/ Joon Hyung’s cousin and older brother

Kyung Soo Jin as Song Shi Ho, the ex-girlfriend of Joon Hyung

Ahn Gil Kang as Kim Chnag Gul/ Kim Bok Joo’s father

Kang Ki Young as Kim Dae Ho/ Kim Bok Joo’s uncle

Jung In Gi as Joon Hyung’s uncle and foster father

Lee Jung Eun as Joon Hyung’s aunt and foster mother

Jo Hye-jung as Jung Nan-hee, Bok-joo's best friend

Lee Joo-young as Lee Seon-ok, Bok-joo's best friend

Choi Moo-sung as Yoon Deok-man, Professor/Coach

Jang Young-nam as Choi Sung-eun, Coach

Oh Eui-sik as Bang Woon-ki, Team Captain

Lee Bit-na as Bitna, Bok-joo's junior

Moon Ji-yoon as Sang Chul

Ji Il-joo as Jo Tae-kwon, Joon-hyung's roommate and close friend

And oh! There are wonderful surprise cameo appearances in the drama too. 

Lee Jong Suk from MBC's W Two Worlds, and he is known to be a close friend  of Sung Kyung. 

Ji Soo is known to be a close friend of Nam Joo Hyuk, he also act with him before in "Scarlet Heart Ryeo."

Nam Joo Hyuk's leading lady in "Scarlet Heart Ryeo" appeared in the drama, too. 

It might be better if you read this article with this music background(credits to Naver Music Channel YouTube). Oh, so much feels. I already miss them! 

Disclaimer: All images in here are screengrabbed. Credits to MBC