KajoPicks: 10 Korean thriller dramas from OCN you should watch
Orion Cinema Network (OCN) is a movie channel on basic cable in South Korea. It is one of the cable channels in the country besides Joongang Tongyang Broadcasting Company (jTBC), Channel A and Total Variety Network (TvN).
Among Korean drama fans, OCN channel is known to air the best thriller dramas.
If you are looking for thriller dramas, here are 10 of them you should watch from OCN:
After his wife is murdered while he is at work, Moo Jin-hyuk (Jang Hyuk) is crippled with guilt. The successful detective’s life spirals out of control after her death.
In the meantime, Kang Kwon-joo (Lee Ha-na) is a driven rookie officer working at the emergency 112 call center.
While working there, a brutal murder takes place and her police father was the first to arrive. Unfortunately, her father is killed by the killer and Kwon-joo hears everything over the phone.
After the incident, she goes to the US to further her studies and returns to Korea as a voice profiler.
Together with Jin-hyuk, the duo go on a hunt for the serial killer who is responsible for the deaths of their loved ones.
All thanks to its popularity, OCN renewed the series for the second season in 2018 and the third season in 2019.
Starring Choi Jin-hyuk, Yoon Hyun-min and Lee Yoo-young, the drama first sets in 1986.
Park Gwang-ho is a successful detective assigned to a series of killings. One day, something mysterious happens when he passes through a tunnel while pursuing a suspect. He finds himself time-travelling 30 years into the future.
There he meet Kim Seon-jae, an elite but eccentric detective. As it turns out, the serial murders in the 80s continue to happen in the present.
The duo works with psychology professor Shin Jae-yi to solve these unsolved murders.
3.Missing Noir M (2015)
In this police procedural-thriller drama, Missing Noir M circles around the special missing persons task force.
This task force only takes 1 per cent of the toughest unsolved cases. Its leader Gil Soo-hyun (Kim Kang-woo) is a genius who worked for the FBI.
His partner is Oh Dae-young (Park Hee-soon), a senior detective with a strong sense of justice.
Soo-hyun goes by the book and is very analytical while Dae-young is the I-have-a-hunch kind of detective.
Can they put aside their different working styles and solve cases together?
4.Save Me (2017)
Based on the webtoon Out of the World by Jo Geum-san, this drama airs on OCN from Aug 5 to Sept 24 in 2017.
After her father’s business fails, Sang-mi and her family move from Seoul to the suburb of Muji County.
On the surface, there is peaceful church in the county. Behind closed doors, the church is the religious cult Goseonwon.
In their new school, Sang-mi’s brother Sang-jin is being bullied. Due to this, he commits suicide, leaving his family falling apart.
The cult leader then takes this chance to lure Sang-mi’s parents into Goseonwon.
Trapped by the cult, Sang-mi has nowhere to go and her parents are completely brainwashed.
Three years later, her classmate Han Sang-hwan, the son of the county chief who is now a law student, and his two friends Jung-hoon and Man-hee have a chance encounter with Sang-mi.
She whispers to them, “Save me.”
Kang Woo-hyun (Lee Seo-jin) is a respected anchor at a broadcasting station. He has a lovely family and his life seems perfect.
One day, he goes on a trip with his family and a tragic situation occurs.
Meanwhile, Ko Dong-kook (Sung Dong-il) is a veteran detective with uncanny instinct.
He takes Kang Woo-hyun’s case and starts to investigate about his family.
6.Hell is Other People (2019)
Yoon Jong-woo is a handsome writer who comes from the countryside. After landing a new job in a new city, he moves in room 303 at Eden Dormitory.
His next door neighbour in room 304 is Seo Moon-jo, a mysterious dentist.
At first, Jong-woo is willing to cope with the almost rundown place until he saves enough money to move out.
Then mysterious things start to happen around the dormitory, making him wanting to stay in order to investigate these occurrences.
Fifteen years ago, a murder took place which turned the lives of three people upside down. Perhaps by fate (or Korean drama logic), these three people were brought together to search for answers.
Do Chi-Gwang (Han Suk-kyu) is an elite detective. But after awhile working in the force, he realises that all the important tasks are handed to the corrupt police. Hence, he decides to join the internal affairs investigation team.
In the meantime, Kim Young-koon (Seo Kang-joon) is another police officer who is affected by the murder case 15 years ago. At first glance, he seems to be uncaring and have a cold personality .
Actually, it is just a facade to hide himself and his struggle with the past. He too, joins Chi-gwang and his internal affairs investigation team.
The final member of the group is Han Tae-joo (Kim Hyun-joo). She used to be a prosecutor before quitting to become a lawyer. Together, they slowly begin to unravel what actually happened 15 years ago.
With 16 episodes, the drama manages to keep the suspense throughout the series. Many viewers praised it for being able to keep them in its grips until the very end.
Watcher (2019) is directed by Ahn Gil-ho who is known for his works Stranger (2017) and Memories of the Alhambra (2018).
8.The Lies Within (2019)
Dead body? Check. Missing person? Check. A conspiracy theory? Check. The Lies Within (2019) has all the above components which make the basics of a thriller drama.
It circles around Jo Tae-sik (Lee Min-ki), a detective who moved to a police station in a small country village.
Thinking that he could get away from the nasty crimes of big city, a dead body shows up in his area.
It belongs to Lawmaker Kim Seung-cheol. At first, his death looks like a car accident but his hunch tells Tae-sik there is more than meets the eye.
His suspicion grows when he finds out that Seung-cheol’s son in-law goes missing.
In the mean time Kim Seo-hui (Lee Yoo-young) is the youngest daughter of Seung-cheol. Together with Tae-sik, she aims to find out what happen to her father and missing husband.
Developed and produced by Studio Dragon for OCN, this thriller drama is based on a novel by Joo Won-gyu.
9.Bad Guys (2014)
This answers the question, what if the Suicide Squad was made up of a bunch of South Korean inmates.
Detective Oh Gu-tak (Kim Sang-joong) comes up with a brilliant plan; to use criminals to investigates and hunt down other criminals. Who know the minds of criminals than the criminals themselves right?
So he releases three convicts from jail to form his team.
Lee Jung-moon (Park Hae-jin) is a psychopath serial killer. Putting that aside, he is the youngest member of Mensa with an IQ of 165 and doctorate degrees in Math and Philosophy. (Of course.)
The second convict is a mob boss, Park Un-cheol (Ma Dong-seok).
Lastly, Jung Tae-soo (Jo Dong-hyuk) a professional killer who never been caught but suddenly turned himself in one day.
10.Tell Me What You Saw (2020)
Oh Hyun-jae (Jang Hyuk) was once a top criminal profiler. Everything crumbles around him when he loses his fiance in an explosion caused by a serial killer. The serial killer is never caught.
Since then, he gave up his career and live in seclusion.
Five years later, a new murder case happens using the same method as that serial killer.
This prompts Hyun-jae to return to his field in order to catch the killer. He is joined by Cha Soo-young (Soo-young), a rookie detective who has a photographic memory.
Produced by Studio Dragon, this drama is one of the high-rated series from OCN in 2020.