Im Soo Jung and Lee Do Hyun in Talks for Teacher-Student Romance Melodrama Melacholia

Oh boy, this drama sounds so problematic from the start and now more than ever. Im Soo Jung and Lee Do Hyun are in talks to star in the upcoming K-drama Melancholia, dealing with a female teacher-male student romance that turns things upside down at a prestigious private school. K-ent loves teacher-student romances mostly of the noona-dongsaeng variety seemingly making seem as if the woman were older it would nullify the consent problems as if the younger man would be mentally and physically capable of rendering the choice. I haven’t love any such stories but concede that having the right actress/actor could see the story onscreen and remove the ick factor. Lee Do Hyun is a busy young man currently filming 1980’s period drama Youth of May so this casting isn’t confirmed yet but wanted to share it since I think these two would make a compelling drama pairing but personally wish it wasn’t for this drama.


Im Soo Jung and Lee Do Hyun in Talks for Teacher-Student Romance Melodrama Melacholia — 44 Comments

  1. Pingback: Im Soo Jung and Lee Do Hyun in Talks for Teacher-Student Romance Melodrama Melacholia - Kpopnchill - All About K-pop News

  2. Looks like noona romance is one of the themes for this year in dramaland. Seo Hyun-jin & Kim Young-dae. Now ISJ-LDY? Oh, and let’s not forget the SHK-JKY pairing. Sigh.

  3. Gross.

    I suspect there are market forces at work with regards to 40+ actresses and actors in their 20s being in surplus for dramas (i.e. not in demand for more prestigious movies) and the industry is just working with what they’ve got.

  4. it is a crime nowadays. it is wrong to make this kind of drama where one is in its teens and the other is an adult. i smell a petition coming. the trend this days are cancelling a drama over a smallest of things.

  5. It’s better for actors like Shin Ha Kyun, Lee Hee Joon they could chose to do thriller mystery and the likes while actress who are past 30 keep getting offers to star in a Noona romance. What’s the deal?

    Something in the rain was fine because Jung Hae In was already 30 when he took the role.

    Reading about the dismal news of SHJ to do another Noona romance was already a bummer. And now this. Aren’t there any other stories to mine?

  6. Yucky.

    The only time this plot worked for me was Biscuit Teacher and Star Candy. That one was barely held together by Gong Yoo’s swagger and the fact that the make high schooler was the pursuer.

      • There was another student-teacher drama called Cool Guys, Hot Ramen starring Jung Ill Woo (33) and Lee Chung Ah (36). That one worked for me coz both leads matched visually & I don’t get the ICK feeling.

    • Not as bad as Jung Ill Woo’s 18 year old high schooler who seduced an older female passenger in the very first episode. Met on the flight home to Korea from NYC. She took him home thinking he’s a Lothario and he bedded her as a means to escape from his daddy’s henchmen. Never finished the rest of the drama.

      • Only he didn’t bed her. They slept in separate bedrooms. The next morning she walked out in revealing clothes asking suggestive questions of whether he only slept over and that was it. Then he said she could not “do that” with him because she would get in to big trouble, which was him hinting that he was underage (though she prob didn’t catch on) and that nothing had happened between them.

      • Thank you for correcting. Like many fans, English is not my first language & subs can be confusing sometimes. Not as good like now.

  7. Ewww

    The only way this would be remotely acceptable is if he were a college student. It’s still uncomfortable, but at least he’s an adult. If he’s a teenager in high school… I wonder how they can pull this off.

  8. The number of popular actresses in the 30s and 40s has gone up. While rising male actors is steadily increasing. Male actors in their 30s like LMH, LSG and LJS are focusing on image change and moving away from romance dramas. Actors in their 40s generally focus more on movies even with the depleted ticket sales and fewer movies since COVID actors will still be the first choice over actresses. This leaves more actresses to do dramas forcing even movies stars like KTR, KGE and the Queen of Cannes JDY into dramas. Problem is the type of roles available to women is only various forms of romance dramas : Melo romance, slice of life romance, romantic comedy etc. The lack of available male leads in the 30s and 40s due to the above reasons means all the rising male stars in the 20s will end up getting cast. This is good for the male stars because they can act with experienced veterans with guaranteed audience and don’t have the burden of carrying the dramas. Case in point Dazzling vs Startup. It works for both parties.

    • Great point! Also I believe that its harder for new stars for women then it is for men. Hallyu actresses get paired with rising/hot stars in a romance, and boom instant rise/hit for the ML. Meanwhile, the FL tends not to get the same level of adoration/boost to fame.

      It’s sad that for women in drama land or film land, that their roles tend to deplete as they get older. I do believe that doing action roles, is a great way to expand their careers. Ex. Lee Si Young/Park Shin Hye.

      The formula between established FL and rising ML works well. But I do wonder if this will get stale in the future? I’m getting a bit tired of seeing 20s age actor paired with 30s/40s aged actress. I want to see similar or same age pairings again in drama land.

      • @Ahrin Well, I mean in the 2000s era to now, we seen those pairings a lot. So I was basing on that period til 2021. But in terms of career, its a huge plus for rising ML to get a leading role opposite a FL in a romance show. I think that big or small, they gain a big following from it. Romance is what made Hallyu dramas huge. So I don’t think even w/ faded success compared to the past, I think we’ll continue seeing those type of pairings unless more film actors come on board drama land.

      • @Pam Women in action roles is yes but it needs to be without romance other wise it tends to become the same thing. Sweet Home female leads yes but not Sisyphus female lead because again she plays second fiddle to the male lead.

      • Noona romances are working well who said they weren’t? ICHYV, the drama with PSJ and UJW, RIBB, HDL, Search WWW, Rookie Historian, Something in the Rain, Biscuit Teacher, Encounter, WTCB, Sam Soon. Almost every noona romance drama is popular hits.

      • Rattling off a few shows over a period of almost 20 years doesn’t mean that noona dramas are guaranteed hits. Most aren’t.

      • @Mindy This point is exactly one of the reasons I feel RWTMR stands out! FL does action and there is heavy romance but she still doesn’t become secondary to the male characters! In fact neither of the FLs has become less important than the MLs. When you give characters their own agenda and make them complex there is a chance that they can all stand out without over powering each other! There is still hope!

    • This is very true because male stars are always more in demand than female stars even in female centric dramas. Sci-fi dramas should have been a genre that could work for both men and women but if you look at all the dramas in this category romance is always shoehorned in, the worst case being Memories of Alhambra. Thus female leads end up being reduced to romantic interests unless the male lead is younger like in Alice and even that was badly written. The only time women only dramas do extremely well are makjang dramas like Penthouse, World of the Married, Lady in Dignity or Sky Castle. Even then as pointed out it only works for women in the 30-40 range.

    • Totally agree with your point! In addition to what is going on with actors in their 30s and 40s. With army service, there are always fewer star-power actors in their late 20s/early 30s available, so you have to dip into an even younger pool of availabilities. Also, the late 20s/early 30s pool isn’t that strong either. I feel like there was an explosion of super famous actors born between 1985-1987 and then an okay amount for the next few years until another explosion for 1995-1997.

      • Its the 10 year gap, the time period it takes for actors to move from one age range to the next which is when the ‘drought’ happens. Although I would argue even with the surge in new actors the drought for ‘hallyu’ stars continues.

  9. I’m curious that the ardent k-netz mob which has an opinion on everything does not get grossed out by these multiple teacher-student romances (regardless of which gender is older) which is considered unethical in most countries, and that’s to protect the student since the teacher is in a position of power. I can understand a movie or two every x number of years with that theme, but to have this theme in multiple dramas year after year seems to indicate that this is probably normalized and romanticized? Looks like every new and upcoming actor needs to star in a drama with this theme lol.

  10. And now Kim Hee Sun – Rowoon… hopefully there is no romance.

    It is so disturbing to me how easy it is for these young actors to get leading roles. I feel quite sad for young actresses just starting out.

    • Basically the point someone made above. There are more actresses in that age category who are established and still dominate the industry. There are also fewer dramas being made for TV these days and priority will always go to seniority.

    • Given Kim Hee Sun’s tenancy to not do kiss scenes since marriage, prob not. She said after Alice ended, that even though she wants to work with Nam Joo Hyuk and Park Bo Gum, she feels like an ahjumma next to them so nope.

      It’s a competition, and with models, singers, idols, MCs, and etc its harder than ever. Esp. for women, its a blood bath fighting to play second fiddle as @Mindy said to the ML.

    • Rowoon still not confirmed, even though he accepts that, hopefully there’s no romance too.

      These young actors really on high demand, Song Kang, Lee Do Hyun, Jang Dong Yoon, and now Rowoon too, but I’ll not say it’s easy for them to get a lead role. They did minor role too, but people seeing them when they get on spotlight as a lead role. They did drama more than once a year, not like senior and popular actor who tend to be in drama only 1 in a year.

      • What I don’t understand is why these boys do 3-4 dramas in a year, while the 86-88 generation only did it once a year in the past. Maybe that group is more famous at a younger age.

        I feel that the trend now is 1 famous + 1 not so famous lead. This include KSH, SJK and LSG recent drama. The FL is not the same caliber as them.

        So same for these higher profile ladies, matching them with the rookie male actors. It then ended up in Noona-themed romance.

        Personally I prefer similar age casting. We had HHJ/LSG, PMY/LMH, PMY/JCW, LJK/MCW, SJK/MCW etc these couples are quite perfect match compared to those with huge age gap. I really miss the older K drama of that generation compare to the current K drama.

      • @minikfan while i agree that earlier kdramas didn’t used to have much age gaps..but we still hopes CLOY leads were same aged, StartUp although the drama sucked, the leads were of same age ..Even Mount Jirisan is one such type of drama

    • For once I would like to see a drama written about a mother and her son instead of Noona romance.

      Alice started right with KHS and Joo Won as mother and son. I really liked the start of the story as they showed how a mom deals with a son who is of high school age and is hard to communicate with. There is so much drama and angst to mine in this kind of story. Easier to relate to. Or even an older sister and younger brother story might work too.

      Noona romance doesn’t work for me when the age gap is just too big. Not realistic as well.

      Sunbae dont put on that lipstick worked for me since the gap between them is six years and visually they don’t look that far apart.

      So for KHS Rowoon, better not have love interest despite KHS looking young for her age.

      • I like your idea about a drama that centers around the relationship between a mother and son. The problem with kdramas is they are still obsessed with having romance as a major plot point.

      • Cable networks are pivoting towards non-romance. Good ones are Off the Route starring NJH & Park Ji Young a mother-daughter centred short drama & Navillera about a 70 year old man learning ballet.

  11. I wonder if this is going the route of “A Teacher”- the Hulu series. The story in the Hulu series was presented as a crime- as it should be. So if they are making the ML character in high school, then yes the FL is committing a serious crime. I like both actors, but not sure if this is too much for the conservative Korean audience.

    • I was going to say lol. Isn’t this the Hulu series? I heard that series was debated and not in a good way either. I feel like it’ll be controversial either way. Wonder how K-netizens will take this? They better go the crime route, b/c if they make this romantic and make the student end up with the teacher like Biscuit Candy, then NOPE!!

      • The male lead in “Biscuit Candy” was actually 20, but he was repeating his final year at high school due to failing it,and the female lead is 25.

  12. Why don’t their female co-stars get popular too unless drama productions are purposefully picking talentless actresses?

    The young guys get offered multiple eye candy roles whereas women are consigned to bitchy second lead. K entertainment should be ashamed. Pickings must be real slim if even Son Ye Jin and Jeon Ji Hyun are slumming it in drama land while their male peers seem to be getting by just fine with movies only.

    • It’s about to get worse with SM Entertainment reorganizing its music & actor management subsidiaries. It means more idols, singers, MCs are able to cross over to the acting side to get jobs. XO’s Sehun and Girl’s Day Yura are snagging supporting roles in Song Hye Kyo and Jang Ki Yong’s noona-dongsaeng romance drama. I would much prefer supporting roles go to talented deserving actors/actresses who have been doing it hard for years like Shin Hye Sun.

  13. if it’s done right, it could be good like majo no jouken, Hello my teacher and Romance. I love these 3 to pieces. I didnt like Kim Ha Neul romance Lee Do Hyun in 18 again recently. Disturbed by the fact that she only had kiss scenes with Lee Do Hyun during the run till the last episode.

  14. Gone are the days with similar age pairing – some of the best include SJK/MCW, LMH/PMY, LSG/HHJ, JCW/PMY…I still prefer similar age couple, even Suzy/NJH. The noona and huge age gap couple, just don’t look right to me…maybe I am bias.

    • There are some exceptions though like CLOY and FOE. The upcoming DAYS with SIG & PBY seem like a breath of fresh air. However, they are increasingly rare. Case in point, none of the current k-dramas on Netflix interests me. The ones that capture my attention are older titles like Revolutionary Love, My Shy Boss & some older weekend dramas. Maybe ad revenues and sponsorships dry up during covid times. Budget reduced thus they can’t afford to hire same age male-female stars who cost more compared to one famous + less famous co-lead.

  15. I like this kind of story or cheating story because the focus is on the psychology of the characters and it’s often pretty interesting. I don’t watch dramas to see perfect characters doing perfect things… I watch dramas to make me feel something or think. This kind of stories makes me think about what I would do, where is the limit, etc.

    In Jdorama, there are so many stories between young girs falling for older men, and nobody says they’re pervert, there are older actresses, etc.

  16. Wait, would he be a student in high school or an older university student (like mid 20’s), if he is a high school student, count me out. I do not do movies, tv shows, mangas, whatever that involve relationship between teachers or any adults and kids still in middle school or high school. That’s where I personally draw the line because these relationships always come off as predatory to me in real life and in fictional media. I always assumed Japanese audiences were much more comfortable with this topic than Korean audiences but I guess we’ll see.

    I really like Lee Do Hyun so hope he chooses wisely especially with the recent massive controversies with other dramas. It’s a different topic but korean netizens have set a precedent with Joseon Exorcist. It sucks to feel like you have to censor yourself so much but he’s still an up and coming actor.

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