First Look at Park Hae Jin and Lee Jong Seok as the Titular Doctor Stranger for SBS

I’m still waiting for someone to convince me of the appeal of Lee Jong Seok. Back when School 2013 aired I thought he and Kim Woo Bin would forever be popular actors I would never find interesting enough to watch. I don’t need cookie cutter good looks, far from it really, but I do need my actors to have some sort of “it” factor that makes me sit up and take note. Kim Woo Bin went on to do that in Heirs and now I find him the bees knees, but I couldn’t get past a few episodes of Lee Jong Seok in I Hear Your Voice and for the life of me he totally looks like ย a cross between The Joker and an anemic vampire. I concede he’s definitely more mainstream attractive than his best buddy Kim Woo Bin, but between them I’d take Kim Woo Bin to headline a drama any day.

IHYV was more a Lee Bo Young drama when it first started before Lee Jong Seok really came to the forefront and won audience hearts, while School 2013 was an ensemble piece. That makes the upcoming Doctor Stranger on SBS Lee Jong Seok’s first real headlining drama with him playing the titular Dr. Stranger. Lee Jong Seok plays a South Korean who was abducted to North Korean along with his doctor dad. He was raised and educated in the North and follows in his father’s footsteps to become an accomplished heart surgeon. He becomes the doctor in a strange land when he returns to South Korea but bearing the education and life experiences of growing up in the North. Park Hae Jin is a fellow rival doctor while Kang Sora and Jin Se Yeon round out the female portion of the cast and the love interests. Check out the first official pictures from the drama, including a first look at the overseas shoot in Hungary. Dr. Stranger will premiere the last week of April following God’s Gift: 14 Days on Mon-Tues.

Lee Jong Seok and Jin Se Yeon are adorable together. I hope they are a couple and Park Hae Jin and Kang Sora are a couple. The more the merrier.

Park Hae Jin looks gooooood here, the centered parted wavy hair that dorkifies him notwithstanding. He definitely rocks the scrubs and white coat.

I find the title that odd mash-up of Korean and English – Dakteo Yibangin – rather then sticking with either English or Korean for the two words. Directing this drama is PD Jin Hyuk who did The Master’s Sun, Prosecutor Princess, City Hunter, Brilliant Legacy/Shining Inheritance, and Painter of the Wind. He’s an SBS regular and I always love his directing eye. Writing is Park Jin Woo who hasn’t done a drama in a few years, the last one was being part of the ensemble writing team of Kingdom of the Wind and before that working on Snow Flower with famed screenwriter Kim Soo Hyun.

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First Look at Park Hae Jin and Lee Jong Seok as the Titular Doctor Stranger for SBS — 41 Comments

  1. Yay! I <3 Kim Woo Bin too!
    Every time if showed non kdrama frens pics of School2013, they always say LJS is cute and KWB looks strange, so like what Ms koala says, prob he is more mainstream attractive.
    Why isn't Park Hae Jin a lead yet? Sigh …

  2. Koala the same problem you have with LJS I have with Lee Min Ho. I just don’t get the buzz about him. I tried, god knows I tried, but it is just not happening. I watch Heirs but Kim Woo Bin acted circles around him and he hasn’t been an actor that long. Kim Woo Bin has the “it” factor as you said.

    I am not digging the hair on Lee Jong Seok. That is not an approved hairstyle in North Korea. But let’s hope the show is decent.

    • Crawling out of hiding. Thanks for saying this. I have tried to get on the Lee Min Ho train as well. He seems very nice . . . and that is all I can say. I actually like him as the evil brother in the Toyota commercials the best and probably the only person who actually liked Personal Taste. But whenever I see Captain Koala trying to figure out the appeal of LJS, I think of me trying to do the same for LMH.

    • *whispers*

      LMH does nothing for me either. I can see how he’s objectively attractive and charismatic (before Heirs and ugly ajumma sweaters/looking like a high schooler who’d failed about ten years) but his appeal is lost on me.

      As for this drama….I love the PD’s previous work and three out of four of the main leads, so I’m hoping Jin Se-yeon isn’t as insipid as usual to spoil what could be a very good mix. She’s pretty I guess, but there are dozens of actresses in her age range with far more talent, who have yet to score the kind of opportunities she does (maybe they should double-book too? Ha.)

      • HA! I too simply don’t understand the need to cast Jin Se Yeon in everything. But I guess she’s a safe bet, if boring (double-booking multiple dramas not withstanding ha)

    • Exactly, and the much too taut cheekbone area pulled too tight. I found him quite attractive enough in Secret Garden days, though.

      • yeah, totally unnecessary PS on an actor who was talented and good-looking even before. But, much like Hwang Jung-eum, he’s a good enough actor to get me into his performance despite the PS

        (objectively, I agree that he’s weird-looking, but he still has the soft puppy eyes and smile that make him appealing to many, and he has an uncanny tendency to really connect with his costars – I’ve yet to see him in a drama where he doesn’t have chemistry with his costars – whether it was Park Se-young and Woobin in School 2013, Kim Ji-won in High Kick 3, or Lee Bo-young & Co. in IHYV )

  3. I think it’s the makeup and lighting that makes him look more gothic because he is thin but in those stills he even looks anemic ๐Ÿ˜
    To me he looks attractive in the reading pictures!!

  4. Well, I get LJS’ appeal looks wise but I don’t acting wise tbh. I don’t think he really has what it takes to lead dramas (yet, he may improve). I really like Kang Sora and the team behind this is not bad at all, so I’ll be watching. I’m more excited for the Joseon Gunman and a New Leaf though, both sound better (on paper) than this show and both have stronger leading actors.

  5. This drama’s premise is really odd. I can’t imagine they’d want to milk the ‘outsider’ aspect for longer than 5 episodes or it will become pretty damn boring. I do hope there’s more to it than that and a doppelgรคnger girlfriend.

    LJS definitely look creeps in the top shots, but the ones with JSY looks cute. I’m not a fan of hers (don’t think she has too many), but I’m expecting her to get on the good books of a few people if she has a decent amount of chemistry with her leading man.

  6. Mmmm park hae jin…if there was ever a reason for me to watch this drama it would be for him! Loved him since man from the star and my daughter seo young.

  7. OMG! That’s who he looks like! I don’t find him attractive either. There was something about his looks that is a turn off for me too but I couldn’t figure what until you put it into words. Especially when he had his blonde hair, it just made him even more fugly. I haven’t been able to watch his dramas or movies because his face was a distraction and not the in love with you kind of way. Kim Woo Bin on the other hand is fascinatingly delicious. I could stare at him lovingly all day long.

  8. I’m glad I’m not the only one. I’m kinda bemused by all the fangirling over LJS. To me, the PS makes his face look a little odd, in a way that I might actually feel a little sorry for him. Luckily for him, that’s not how most people seem to perceive him (and I’m glad). I do get some of his charm, his eyes can be soft and doe-like, and his smile can be really nice from the right angle– so I don’t find him wholly unattractive. I just don’t get (at all) how so many fans consider him to be one of the hottest actors around.

    Woobie is also kinda funny looking, but he has such intense charisma, he’ll own you before you have time to think about whether or not you find him attractive. Also, I think his looks are way more interesting than LJS’s. Of course I’m biased because I first experienced him as Mad Mireu (White Christmas) and he knocked my socks off.

    • I think it’s a case where his acting ability makes up for a face that, objectively, is not everyone’s cup of tea. If I was just looking at photographs or gifs of him, I wouldn’t think he was all that either, but when he’s in motion and speaking, or looking at someone….then I get it.

  9. I didn’t like LJS until after IHYV. His acting got a lot better as the drama progress…so please judge him only if you watched the entire drama.

    Personally, I like him more than Kim Won Bin..to each their own. I never get the appeal of some popular actors but they must have their own charms to attracts certain audiences.

  10. Maybe that’s how some Koreans were born with… Look at Kim Jae Won and Seo Kang Joo from “Cunny Single Lady”, they all have that similar look as Lee Jong Seok. Don’t like when an actor gets too much plastic surgery and starts to look alike as some of those actresses, BUT, please be a little kinder with our words and criticism. Give the boy a break.

  11. I find them both attractive. But I’ll disagree that I Hear Your Voice was about Lee Jong Seok. That was all about Lee Bo Young. Her character, her flaws, her journey – that’s all what it’s about. She’s awesome in that show. Her friendships are the ones that evolve. Her jadedness is the one that dissolves. I love IHYV for Lee Bo Young.

  12. I don’t quite get it, but Lee Jong Seok reminds me of Hans Zhang (appearance wise). *shrud*
    I concede that LJS is the better actor, though.

  13. I am in love with lee jongsuk and kim woobin since school 2013 but he is definitly wouldn’t be the type of guy (face) i’ll find attractive before.

    I love his cute personality and i love to see him in the fashion campaign and magazine he look hot in thoose

  14. Who’s the female lead? Sora or Seyeon? Cuz that will affect my choice to watch this or not. If Jin Seyeon is lead i don’t want another case of gaksital/age of feeling where her character got killed off because the actress is too greedy for another role and double book zzzz

  15. Well, I love Lee Jong Seok since School 2013, and that’s why I decided to watched I Hear Your Voice. But No Breathing disappointed me, may not a kind of movie I want to see. I will pass Hot Young Bloods as well (the reason is simple, his hair style is weird and the set was in 80’s, not into old theme movie he he …). When Dr Strangers air, I will try to watch it. If I find it uninteresting I will pass it. As for Kim Woo Bin, I love him more in Heirs, hope he will find a new drama soon ..

  16. I don’t get the appeal of either Lee Jong-suk or Kim Woo-bin. I find neither one of them attractive. I really want to see Park Hae-jin again, but this drama is full of passes for me that I don’t think I’ll watch it. The only thing I abhor more than medical dramas are saguek dramas.

  17. i am both a fan of LJS and KWB, my tumblog is full of them ๐Ÿ™‚
    each have their own charm and well, as compared to other newbies, both guys can act.

    just the same thing mentioned above, i can’t for the life of me fathom the fandom for Lee Min HO ๐Ÿ™‚ but yeah, to each his own. ๐Ÿ™‚

    thanks for the post koala sis. ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. OMG THANK YOU FOR SAYING THIS.
    I thought I was the only one. I must admit that I liked him in secret garden, but only when him and oskar character shared the screen. Now that he’s getting all these come hither looks im puzzled. But im sorry lee jeon seok ๐Ÿ™ im happy he’s being noticed but my gosh, calling him sexy is like saying Gong Yoo is short….and fat. Now Gong Yoo is YUMMY all over

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