K-drama Friday Club #4 : Gender Bender~


I haven’t been posting for exactly two weeks and now I’m back with my fourth #KFC. Like I said before, my brother went to Birmingham for a robot competition with my laptop last week so I wasn’t able to post but now that he is back, so are my posts! Anyway back to this post. As most of you can see, a majority of dramas revolve around a cross-dressing theme where a girl disguise as a guy for a particular reason. And magically, no one seems to notice their extremely feminine girly appearance/behavior/voice. In this post I’m going to tell you the reasons why the cross-dressing girl can be easily recognized as one.

You’re Beautiful 


Like I said before, You’re Beautiful is one of my very first dramas and it’s funny because I actually loved it and think it was the best drama ever. Now, I’m not degrading the drama of anything but I just think there are better dramas out there. The very thing that attracted me to this drama was the whole girl-pretends-to-be-boy theme but now I blame this drama for starting the trend.

Reasons why it is not hard to spot that Go Mi Nam is in fact a girl:

Appearance: Go Mi Nam definitely looks feminine but in the drama she has a male twin (I still can’t imagine a guy that looks like her). She is also really short for a guy and she has a small bone frame. Jeremy mentioned that she has fair skin before but I guess you really don’t go around thinking that people are girl just because of their fair skin. I don’t think she could pass as a guy if I show her photo to my friends~

Voice: She has an extremely girly voice, especially when she sings. I could actually tell that she is a girl from the very first episode when she started to sing .

Behaviour: Once while watching TV after dance practice, a model with great legs came on and Go Mi Nam said she wants to wear high heels while the others were looking at the model’s legs. If all of the above isn’t suspicious enough, she doesn’t shower with the staff (who are men) and she never changed in front of them.

Nail Shop Paris


Nail Shop Paris was such a fun watch for me since it was short and light. I’m not sure about the cross-dressing thing in this drama though. I’m still not working yet so I don’t really understand the hardships to do with jobs. I wasn’t so sure if a person would be that desperate enough to cross-dress as a guy just to get novel ideas. I’ve had a British writer coming to my school for a visit but from what she told me, I’m pretty sure she didn’t cross-dress:P

Appearance: Gyuri is actually known to be the prettiest of the group KARA so I was surprised to see her in this drama. Even though Gyuri is considered tall among girl groups, she is still pretty short as a guy.

Voice: Gyuri is the only one who makes the effort from this list to change her voice. It’s hard to explain but she has a unique voice in this drama. I’m not sure if it is the same in real life because her voice doesn’t sound like that when she sings. She actually did sound less like a girl!

Behaviour: Like Go Mi Nam, Gyuri doesn’t change in front of her colleagues. She acted like Kay has transmitted disease or something when Kay asked her to help him put medicine patches on his bare back. Then she is also caught spying on Alex and secretly kissing him by Kay~

SungKyunKwan Scandal


There is even cross-dressing in Joseon Era~SungKyunKwan Scandal is the first drama that comes to mind. It actually makes more sense that people in Joseon Era were cross-dressing because before most poor female peasants would try to avoid being concubines of rich lords by dressing as a man. In this drama it is one of the factors that made Yoon Hee cross-dress but another common factor is education. Women back then weren’t allowed education so women who wish to study would also disguise themselves as guys as well.

Appearance: Yoon Hee doesn’t look as feminine as the other two in my opinion. I guess she could pull off as a pretty boy to Asians but definitely not to others. (Since Asians are familiar with the idea of flower boys)

Voice: Yoon Hee has a middle-high range voice but she still sound feminine. I think if she is acting as a boy who hasn’t hit his puberty yet, it would work but not what she is acting as now.

Behaviour: I think the reason Yoon Hee wasn’t discovered is because she is so brave and courageous. In this way, she is masculine and it is the reason why Cho Sun was attracted to him(her), thus giving her the nickname Daemul (meaning Big Thing for those of you who don’t know, I’m pretty sure I don’t have to tell you what Thing it is:P) Regardless of that, it is still hard for Yoon Hee as there is a “female detector” in her room (Jae Shin’s hiccups).

Coffee Prince


Coffee Prince is in fact the earliest Gender-Bender drama I’ve ever seen but I think the Gender Bender theme became more popular after You’re Beautiful. This doesn’t mean I love this drama any less! This drama has one of my all time favourite drama kiss and it has secured its spot for 3 consecutive years! I’ve noticed that a lot of cross-dressing moments start from the lack of work, looks like the government will know what to do:P

Appearance: Eun Chan has the most masculine-looking face. That still doesn’t mean she looks like a guy but together with her behaviour, she is the most convincing one.

Voice: Eun Chan doesn’t have that high of a voice but since her partner is Han Gyul who has super deep manly voice, the contrast is distantly shown.

Behaviour: Not only is Eun Chan the most mascine-looking but she also has very masculine behaviours. She slurps noodles and doesn’t care what she looks like when she eat. She is very tough and does martial art. She even talks like one, her speeches aren’t lady-like.

To The Beautiful You


This drama is more recent and it is based on a popular Japanese manga. This is the only k-drama where the female lead cross-dress to help her role-model. I agree with Jae Hee’s brother, no matter how crazy you are with an idol, you shouldn’t leave your studies just to meet them. Everyone has different life values though but since studies are so important to Koreans, I guess Tae Joon is really important to Jae Hee.

Appearance: Like Gyuri, Sulli is considered very beautiful in her group f(x), she even looks like a gisaeng from long ago! Seriously the casting team needs to work on the skills. Sulli wouldn’t pass as a guy to me in a million years! And don’t get me wrong, this has nothing to do with acting skills. I guess it is hard to get everything perfect. At least Sulli is reasonably tall but her partner is MinHo who is gigantic so it is still the casting team’s fault~

Voice: Sulli sounds alright when she doesn’t sing but when she entered that cross-dressing contest and sang IU’s peach, it is impossible to not know that she is a girl.

Behaviour: Since Sulli enrolled into an athletic school and she is pretty sporty, there is really nothing wrong. But seriously, when she arrived the first day, took a shower only to find out that someone is opening the door and wrapped her body with the towel. It is ridiculous the way she stood with the towel. There is no guy I know that wraps their towel up to their chest!

So here are my opinions on the gender-bender in K-dramas. My conclusion? I find it ridiculous sometimes but it is such a fun watch especially when you are tired! By the way, is it just me or all the girl who cross-dress tend to have a bowl haircut? Nevermind SungKyunKwan Scandal since in the Joseon Era all guys have long hair but look at the modern ones~ My favourite gender-bender is Coffee Prince. What is yours? tell me in the comments^^ Thank you for reading this week’s KFC and I hope you enjoy it:D


11 thoughts on “K-drama Friday Club #4 : Gender Bender~

  1. i’ve only seen You’re Beautiful and Coffee Prince but if someone tells you that someone is of a certain gender and they are of a good reputation your going to believe them. Go Mi Nam wasn’t the most masculine boy but are you going to question your boss? Eun Chan was pretty masculine and if she never corrects you, you will just go on assuming they are of the the make gender…

    • This is so true! I never thought about it this way. I guess if people tell you their gender you wouldn’t really stop to think whether they are lying or not since there’s no reason to in my opinion. Of course everything can happen in dramaland so I’m just going to accept it as it is and enjoy the most out of it.

  2. I did think Eun Chan was convincing. Coffee prince is still my favourite gender bender. But whether they are convincing or not, I still enjoy gender Bender’s.

    • I guess she was convincing because she was boyish by nature and instead of actually pretending to be a boy, she is just being herself. I agree that gender-benders are enjoyable~ especially the misunderstandings that come with it 😉

  3. Also for me the most convincing and my favorite was Coffee Prince. But generally I guess that actually part of why I enjoy gender bender is how ridiculous it seems that no body know about it 😀

  4. wel fr You’re beautiful when you mentioned her signing voice, her manager said that she had the same voice as her “twin brother” so her brother also has a really high pitched singing voice i assume

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