As the title clearly indicates, this is a companion piece to the post I did about the memorable and heart-warming parental figures in K-dramas. This was ordered by His Baejesty suggested by Thundie. When I first started watching K-dramas, it was actually the hateful and manipulative parental figures that really stood out. I think the early Hallyu dramas really enjoyed using crappy parents to create roadblocks for our OTP.
This trend seems to have waned considerably in the recent years. It’s fitting that I started on a positive note, to salute the wonderful parents and grandparents that have touched my heart, before moving on to the despicable and selfish parents that I want to skin alive and roast their hearts on a turning spit.
Now don’t go thinking I’m a bloodthirsty wench. I’m really a big giant marshmallow, except when it comes to the mistreatment of children, and especially when such mistreatment happens at the hands of the parents. Parents are supposed to take care of their children, and when the abuse happens at the hands of the caregiver, it hits a raw nerve in me, turning me batshit insane with fury (ockoala, Mad!).
The one silver lining when I was compiling this list is that all the horrible parents are drawn in such crude, ridiculous levels of evil that it renders their machinations cartoonish, if not outright unrealistic. Nonetheless, they pissed me off to no end, and I wish a Gumiho would come and eat each of their liver. Please be reminded that this list does not include bad “people” in K-dramas, but bad “parental figures.”
These Hall-of-Fame shitty parents are placed in no particular order (it’s a waste of time to do side-by-side comparisons to determine degree of crappy parenting). I am, however, 100% sure this list is not exhaustive in the least. But at least this list is gender neutral and equally represented by both genders.
The Hall of Ignominy:
Choi Il Hwa as BB in City Hall – This is a bad man, and an even worse excuse for a father. He combines the two traits in this drama to force his illegitimate son to do his bidding and pollute an entire city for his political gain. He gets bitch-slapped by his son, who turns out to be every bit as cunning as his father.
Jo Min Ki as Shin Tae Hwan in East of Eden – He forcefully aborted the love child his mistress was carrying. ‘Nuff said! Actually, he went on to be a spectacularly shitty dad to both the son of his enemy that he unknowingly raised and his real son that later came back to his side. I think he may have been too busy plotting world domination to take parenting seriously.
Lee Mi Sook as Wang Ja Shi, Second Queen of Nakrang and Moon Seung Goon as King Daemushin in Jamyungo – Wow, two world-class shitty parents in one drama. Both went on to mind-screw their respective kids so bad the entire second generation went to hell in a handbasket because everyone was so traumatized. [Actually, there is a third crappy parent in this drama, King Daemushin’s wife, step-mother to Prince Hodong, who spends the entire drama trying to assassinate him, no shit.]
Kim Mi Sook as Baek Sung Hee in Shining Inheritance – She is only the second most evil of the evil-stepmothers in a K-drama. All she cares about is money, security, and the happiness of her daughter. All are perfectly understandable, if only she didn’t abandon an autistic teenager and kick a step-daughter out on the street in her quest for the above.
Lee Hui Hyang as Tae Mira in Stairway to Heaven – THE, I repeat, THE single most evil step-mother in all of K-drama. It’s like the writers threw every evil step-mother stereotype at her and she ran with it. As much as I hated her, she made this piece of crap drama fun while everyone else was moping, crying and Kim Tae Hee’s eyes looked like it was about to bug out in every scene.
The Troll Parents of Jung Jae Min in What Happened in Bali – Troll mommy both coddles and emasculates her son. Troll daddy just beats him with a golf club. How can anyone hate Jo In Sung’s character in WHIB knowing the dysfunctional hell he grew up in.
Jo Min Soo as Cha Chun Hee in Will It Snow For Christmas? – When being a selfish person pays you back via karma on your kid. She’s really the kid in the relationship, while her son becomes the parent. So sad and unfair.
Song Ok Sook as Jung Sang/Min Hyung’s mother in Winter Sonata – She’s an evil pianist. Who tells lie after lie to manipulate her son, and screw with everyone’s mind.
Please feel free to share some horrific K-drama parental figures with me. As much as we hate these parents, the drama sure wouldn’t have worked without their machinations and evil-ways.
Can we also give a small shout out to Mo Hwa Ran, Tae Kyung’s mother in YB? Any mother who says to the kid “because of you I lost the love of my life” and therefore my life went to hell in a handbasket and you owe me big time – despite the fact your father raised you, I can’t remember your birthday, forgot your deathly allergy to shellfish, AND you couldn’t even call me mother and now I’m telling you that I would rather have raised lover-boy’s twins (who ironically couldn’t stand her either) – THAT is big time mommy-crap.
And this in a comedy, no less.
Troll mom has gotten even scarier. Who said there is good plastic surgery in korea?
1. The parents–but mostly the dad–in Autumn Tales. Not only was I shocked by the incest angle but shocked that parents would abandon their daughter after raising her for 13 years.
2. Ja Kyung’s step mom in Dear Heaven. Show is farcical but step mom’s relationship with Ja Kyung was disturbingly realistic and still gives me the chills.
3. PSH’s mom in How to Be a Perfect Neighbor. Poison your husband, wipe out your husband’s mistress, force your son into a loveless marriage with a fembot. All in a days work for this mom.
I also hate Young Joo ( Park Yejin)’s mom in What Happened in Bali! The actress ( Kim Hye Ok ) often acts as evil mom, and I think she’s good doing it.
I rarely watch makjang drama, but one I enjoyed the ridiculousness was Miss Mermaid, and the stepmother is an evil – Han Hye Sook. I hate her too in the first half of Assorted Gems.
The mom in Cain and Abel! Now THAT was one bitchy, craaaazy lady.
LMAOing at the troll parents in WHIB. Cha Chun-hee really was a big kid. Forget the elopement and the destruction it caused – she cast the evil eye (and a bucketful of acid) on the Han family portrait. By doing so she destroyed that family and her own son in the process. Tut.
Still liked her in WISFC though – if I blank her out in the middle episodes.
I have some more:
– Munno as Bidam’s father-figure in QSD. Definitely a big fat failure, if you can recall the constant disregard and the talking behind his back – then to top it off nicely; the handleless sword comment ‘’thine only cutteth thy one who wields thee, thus thou must be broken – raarr!’’. Let’s not even mention the real mother, Mishil.
– Commander Hwang’s father-in-law in Chuno. Oh! How awful for that poor daughter of his, what did she do to deserve a father and a husband like that?
daheefanel beat me to Lee Cho In/So Ji Sub’s evil step-mother in Cain and Abel.
Not everyone’s seen this but it’s worth a mention – I would say Jung Bo-suk in Giant too; I won’t bore anyone with the deets but he seriously takes the prize for bad parenting. Scary man.
Oooooh, the collective evil in my post + the even more evil elicited from all the comments makes my toes curl with abject fear!
Most of these evil parents are in dramas I either have not yet watched or didn’t watch enough of to get the gist of all the evil.
Agree with momosan, Tae Kyung’s mom in YB was a big giant beeyotch failure of a human being, much less a mother.
Also agree with supah on both Munno and Commander’s Hwang’s father, but I feel like they both are crappy people first, then crappy father figures second.
@ djes – okay, Young Joo’s mom in WHIB was a world class harridan, and I hated her with zero reservation. I should have tossed her in with the troll parents, my bad. She wasn’t around much, except each time she showed up with her shifty eye smirk, I wanted to wipe with floor with her face.
How about the mom in MiSa? I guess it’s different when you’re cruel to your son not knowing that he IS your son. But still…her relationship with Yoon was bordering on fauxcest, no? Just a liiiiiittle too touchy-feely. if I remember correctly (ick)!
Of course, the same actress played Gu Jun-pyo’s mom in BOF, so…typecasting much? She was certainly no prize-winning mother, either.
The last lady, even though shes kin’ve ok in Oh Dal Ja’s spring. She’s a total evil wiatch on a broomstick in I hate you but its fine. Gosh, she’s such a disgusting mother that I literally wanted to cry with frustration that I couldnt punch her out in that show.
Binnie’s mother in Secret Garden!! grrrrr.