Recall the things that made you fall in love with this feel-good K-Drama! (For hardcore fans, there’s a list of filming locations down below.)
- Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo is a 2016 Korean drama that stars Lee Sung Kyung, Nam Joo Hyuk, and Lee Jae Yoon, who play the roles of Kim Bok Joo, Jung Joon Hyung, and Jung Jae Yi respectively.
- The series has 16 episodes in total and originally aired on MBC from November 2016 through January 2017.
- If you’re a fan of K-Drama and have Seoul in your bucket list, plan your trip with WAUG —the No. 1 activity booking app from South Korea! Get the app here and start browsing activities near you or overseas.
Explore more: 15 Things Lee Je Hoon Fans Should Know
What We Love About this K-Drama Series
A lot, for sure! But here we list 10 things and scenes that we think are worth rewatching:
1. This awesome trio and their sausage
First few minutes into watching Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo and we found ourselves instantly captivated by the quirky trio composed of Bok Joo, Seon Ok, and Nan Hee. They’re loud talkers, badasses, and women of mean strength. They are also big eaters who are particularly fond of CVS sausages and grilled meat, among others.
Throughout the drama, we see the girls fully supporting each other, be it when Kim Bok Joo gets into the national team, Seon Ok facing a family dilemma, or Nan Hee getting into drunken troubles. They strive to be truthful and protective of each other, and they always exude swaaag. This is definitely a group that’s hard to break.
(You’ll find the exact same stick sausages sold in any 7-Eleven, GS25, Ministop, or CU for around ₩1,000, which roughly converts to $0.9.)
2. Nan Hee’s famous pick-up line: “Do you like Messi?”
Nan Hee loves boys, and she’s got some nifty tricks to lure them. In the first episode of Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo, she reveals one of them, and it starts off with the line: Do you like Messi? Nan Hee thinks that initiating a conversation about football star Lionel Messi will get her crushes to think that she’s “one of the boys” and therefore would like to spend time with her.
“If a girl likes Messi, guys [would] want to have a drink with her. Guys are attracted to girls who share the same interests as them.”Nan Hee (난희)
Pretty good thinking. In fact, Kim Bok Joo (and Jung Jae Yi!) makes good use of this tip as the story progresses, affirming what Nan Hee believes to be an effective strategy. (The pick-up line was also notably picked up by many viewers of the show, particularly Filipinos!)
3. Jung Joon Hyung’s temperament
Nam Joo Hyuk’s character Jung Joon Hyung in Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo used to be a timid kid, but eventually grew up to be a warm, thoughtful, and fun-loving person. He plays the cocky guy in school, but once in a while he reveals his sensitive side and mature outlook. He’s a star swimmer with an unfortunate weakness, but he finds strength when he’s around his family and childhood friend Kim Bok Joo. During his spare time, you can find Joon Hyung hanging at a PC room (PC방).
4. Kim Bok Joo’s facial expressions
Kim Bok Joo trained to become a weightlifter like her father because she grew up to love the smell of weights. She’s the type to work hard, focus on nothing else but her goals, and constantly strive to outdo herself in every competition. But tough as she may seem, she also has cute habits of making funny faces or speed walking, which Jung Joon Hyung likes and teases her for.
5. Lee Jong Suk’s cameo
Remember when Lee Jong Suk suddenly pops in at Bok Chicken as a student?
No? Well, it happened, and Jung Joon Hyung would definitely not feel happy about Kim Bok Joo’s reaction. Take a look at Lee Jong Suk’s cameo on Weightlifting Fairy via the clip below from MBC:
6. Song Shi Ho’s journey
Unlike her typical gymnast peers who have all the time to poke fun at the weightlifters, Song Shi Ho faced some serious issues. She used to be a fine athlete (ribbon gymnastics), then she fell flat to everyone’s dismay. She used to be well-provided for by her parents, until her family had to break due to financial troubles. She used to be happy in Joon Hyung’s arms, but she made the mistake of pushing him away. She used to be healthy, until she chose to overdose on sleeping pills. Life used to be bright for Song Shi Ho, until things rocked her core.
It’s not always easy to understand a character who’s mean-spirited (and someone who tries to get in the way of Bok Joo and Joon Hyung’s happiness), but Song Shi Ho turned out to be an inspiring character in Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo who embraced her reality and found peace.
7. Kim Bok Joo going crazy in love
Everyone could probably relate to this story arc: falling in love for the first time and doing all sorts of crazy things to catch the attention of your crush. Kim Bok Joo almost lost it when she began to entertain feelings for Dr. Jung, who is Joon Hyung’s ‘brother’. She lied about being a musician (Dr. Jung likes classical music), went against her prescribed diet (weightlifters eat a lot!), and deceived her coach, family, and friends.
But despite being caught with her lies, she regretted nothing of it (which we respect). She gave all her best effort, after all.
8. Ji Soo’s ‘oppa’ role
Yes, similar to #5, Ji Soo also happened. He had a longer screen time in Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo than Lee Jong Suk, but it still felt short to us viewers. Perhaps his character’s few minutes with Bok Joo was enough to threaten Joon Hyung? No doubt. LOL.
But Nam Joo Hyuk and Ji Soo actually share a bromance in real life. Here’s one of their episodes from Celeb Bros, if you haven’t seen their part of the show:
9. Joon Hyung trying to win over Bok Joo’s heart
He fortunately finds the weightlifting fairy’s bucket list and fulfills them for her.
Of course, in the end, he succeeds. He was able too woo his 통 (chubby).
10. Their happy ending
Despite the physical distance, misunderstandings, trust issues, and insecurities, weightlifting fairy Kim Bok Joo and Jung Joon Hyung found their happy ending.
Filming Locations: Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo
For those who wish to visit particular shooting or filming locations of Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo, here are the addresses and directions we found on koreandramaland.com and hellokpop.com:
- Oksunbong Peak
- Filming location for the out-of-school activity trek-slash-competition that Kim Bok Joo wanted to ‘win’ at
- Cafe History Incheon
- Shooting site for scenes with Joon Hyung and his psychiatrist
- Korea National Sport University
- Weightlifting Fairy filming site for scenes that include Nam Joo Hyuk’s character’s training
- Myungbo Crossroad
- This is the crossroad where Kim Bok Joo and Dr. Jung met. (Definitely a must-visit shooting location!)
- Weightlifting Fairy filming location for the amusement park scene with Bok Joo, Joon Hyung, and friends.
- Bok Chicken
- Most of the scenes in Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo were filmed here!
Memorable Quote from the K-Drama
Do you know why you are unhappy? Because of the gap between what you want and the reality. Try to be less greedy.Jung Joon Hyung, ‘Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo’
‘Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo’: Synopsis
Here’s the K-drama’s synopsis on Netflix: A rising [female] weightlifting star crosses paths with a childhood friend, a competitive swimmer, and realizes that she has a secret crush on his cousin.
Before you go!
If you love the classic K-Drama Winter Sonata and have not visited Nami Island, check out this awesome tour that you can book for your future trip!