With the craze of “Crazy Rich Asians” these days, we’ve completely fallen under the spell of charming, handsome, successful, and wealthy leading men. Henry Golding’s portrayal of Nick Young in the flick has us thinking about our favorite K-drama chaebols. Since there’s no harm in fantasizing, here’s a look at some of our favorite characters who played the similar Nick Young role, who we really wouldn’t mind dating in real life. If the opportunity came our way, of course.

Warning: spoilers below. 

“Boys Over Flowers”

“Boys Over Flowers” has a very similar setting to “Crazy Rich Asians” in that it involves a group of rich chaebols who live extravagantly lavish lives, driving expensive cars, wearing designer clothes, and basically using money to do or get whatever they want. The drama follows the “F4”, which consists of four rich high-school students who are the most popular group of boys in their high school – for obvious reasons. When Gu Joon Pyo (Lee Min Ho) falls in love with a poor girl named Geum Jan Di (Ku Hye Sun), he realizes that money isn’t enough when it comes to love.

Lee Min Ho has played a chaebol in more than one drama, but his original rich boy role as Gu Joon Pyo is totally worth mentioning. Mainly because he comes off as being a big jerk at the beginning, but then totally softens up as he fell in love with Geum Jan Di. Aside from the fact that this chaebol wears his heart on his sleeve and is so puppy dog sweet to Jan Di, we can’t ignore the fact that it’d be pretty awesome to be taken away on a whim to an island on a random day and be able to get beautiful makeovers!

Catch episode 1 below: 

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“W”

“W” tells the story of a comic book character named Kang Chul (Lee Jong Suk), who has too much money that he doesn’t even know what to do with it. When he meets Oh Yeon Joo (Han Hyo Joo), he realizes that there’s more to life than just money. The story involves a complex web of lies, deceit, family, fate, and true love, which are all elements that make a great series.

Yes, Kang Chul is technically a comic book character who comes to life, but he does make for a good chaebol to fantasize about. Especially with his adorable romantic gestures and how passionate he is for the comic book artist’s daughter, Oh Yeon Joo. I mean, how sweet was it when he bought that book on love and asked Yeon Joo how she would like to be loved?

And obviously, there is the added bonus of our leading man driving cool cars and looking quite handsome in his fashionable and expensive clothes.

Catch episode 1 below: 

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“What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim”

“What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim” stars Park Seo Joon as Lee Young Joon, an heir that owns a big company. He’s used to eating gourmet food, having people admire him, and getting nothing but the best when it comes to clothes and cars. But, when he starts to fall in love with his secretary, Kim Mi So (Park Min Young), he realizes the true value of love.

Maybe it’s the fact that Park Seo Joon is so charming, or maybe it’s because his character shut down a whole amusement park just so he could go on a date with Mi So. Whatever it is, we love how vulnerable Lee Young Joon is for his leading lady. Even the small subtle events he does are so profoundly romantic. Who wouldn’t love to get that adorable cow stuffed animal from him?!

Young Joon’s persistence and ability to show his undying love to Kim Mi So makes him the perfect candidate and the perfect ideal chaebol boyfriend. He is so sweet and charming that we can even look past his arrogant and narcissistic ways.

Catch episode 1 below: 

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“Strong Woman Do Bong Soon”

Park Hyung Sik plays a rich CEO of a video game company who falls in love with Do Bong Soon, a girl gifted with superhuman strength who dreams of designing her own game. When chance brings them together, he can’t help but fall for her charm and decides to hire her as his personal bodyguard.

It really didn’t take much for this CEO chaebol to win our hearts over. All it basically took was that doe-eyed look in An Min Hyuk (Park Hyung Sik)’s eyes every time he looked at his super strong and adorable bodyguard, Do Bong Soon (Park Bo Young).

The vulnerability and sincerity that he looks at her with are heart-stopping. He is willing to do basically anything for her – even risk his life. We are even introduced to his sweet fatherly side towards the end of the series as he takes care of his twin baby girls. Swoooon.

Catch episode 1 below: 

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“Secret Garden”

“Secret Garden” is one of the classic K-dramas that involves a spoiled chaebol who falls in love with a poor girl. Hyun Bin is the CEO of a department store and comes from a wealthy family. His future wife lies in the hands of his mother who wants him to marry a woman that is as wealthy as his family. But when he falls head over heels for a poor stuntwoman by the name of Gil Ra Im (Ha Ji Won), he can’t help but realize that his status is nothing but a hinderance in getting to be with her.

“She loves me, she loves me not…”

Hyun Bin as Kim Ju Won is probably one of my favorite chaebol characters of all time. If we put aside the crazy mom, Ju Won is pretty ideal to date. He’s loyal, persistent and knows what he wants. He’s also got the perfect balance of being realistic and rational. Despite initially telling Gil Ra Im that they are in a situation that can’t be seen into the future because of their different statuses, he makes it work when he realizes that he is in love with her and can’t live without her – even though it means going against his mother’s wishes.

Catch episode 1 below: 

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“Master’s Sun”

“Master’s Sun” is a romantic thriller involving the CEO of a department store named Joo Joong Won (So Ji Sub), who can’t be bothered with love, and Kong Sil (Gong Hyo Jin), a poor woman who can see ghosts. At first, Joong Won is annoyed with Kong Sil as she is a bit clingy, but then he slowly realizes that he’s in love with her.

So Ji Sub is no stranger to playing chaebols in leading roles. Although it’s hard to choose from the ones he’s done, his portrayal as the jerk CEO, Joo Joong Won, is a given in terms of wanting to date in real life. Although he’s not the nicest guy at first, once he falls in love with Kong Sil, he can’t let her go. He’s willing to give her everything she wants; he even gives her space in order for her to figure out what she wants in life. Sounds like a pretty perfect guy.

Catch episode 1 below: 

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“Lucky Romance”

Ryu Jun Yeol stars in this drama as Je Soo Ho, a mathematical genius who owns a big game development company, who meets and falls in love with a superstitious, skilled multi-tasker by the name of Shim Bo Nui (Hwang Jung Eum). Soo Ho’s innocence and ability to show his feelings for Shin Bo Nui are too cute and too endearing for words. Although Soo Ho is beyond wealthy and Bo Nui is in desperate need of money to help her ailing sister, she is reluctant to date him.

Soo Ho text messaging his crush is literally all of us.

Despite this, the sweet part about Soo Ho is that he patiently waits for her. He’s understanding, and even though Bo Nui continues to reject him, he’s persistent and tries to help her as much as he can. It’s also super endearing to see Soo Ho turn from a cold-hearted rich chaebol into a giddy love-struck leading man.

Catch episode 1 below:

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“Radio Romance”

Who wouldn’t want to date a famous actor? When a wealthy actor Ji Soo Ho (Yoon Doojoon) meets his high school first love Song Geu Rim (Kim So Hyun) again, she doesn’t recognize him. And although it takes some time for his cold and bitter heart to melt for Geu Rim, when he does, it’s the sweetest thing. Not only is he willing to put his reputation of being famous on the line, he really doesn’t care for the fame and fortune as long as Geu Rim is by his side.

He wants her to know how much he thinks about her and how important she is to him. On top of the vulnerable way he looks at Geu Rim, he shows his affection through lots of sweet gestures. He buys her a car so that she can drive to work, and he writes post-it notes on the little gifts he buys her. Sounds like a dream come true, right?

Catch episode 1 below: 

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Hey Soompiers, which of these chaebols do you wish you could date? And how did you like “Crazy Rich Asians”? Let me know in the comments below!

binahearts is a Soompi writer who can lately be seen obsessing over Jung Hae In, singing her heart out to BIGBANG at karaoke, walking her dog, or indulging in desserts. Make sure you follow binahearts on Instagram as she journeys through her latest Korean crazes!

Currently watching: “My ID is Gangnam Beauty,” “Mr. Sunshine,” “Familiar Wife,” and “Let’s Eat 3”
All-time favorite dramas: “Secret Garden,” “Goblin,” “Because This Is My First Life,” “Star In My Heart
Looking forward to: Won Bin’s return to the small screen and Song Joong Ki’s next drama



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