Read g.o.d’s Park Joon Hyung’s instagram caption for the regal black dog’s picture he posted over eight months ago.
That may have been his last Instagram post before leaving Sri Lanka with MBLAQ’s Mir (Bang Cheol-yong) and the Korean Broadcasting Corporation’s (KBS) “Suspicious Vacation” crew after winding up two episodes worth filming of the travelling reality show. Groove Over Dose a.k.a g.o.d is one of the few million seller South Korean groups who debuted in 1999 and Music Boys Live in Absolute Quality MBLAQ is Idol star Rain’s Creation in 2009.

Earlier to Taeyang’s (Big Bang) Wedding Dress gracing our media and the broadcasts of Full House or the Sinhalese dubbed Dae Jang Geum, embers of interest in the Korean entertainment scene were apparent in this island nation, but with fewer dialouges.
Not many knew about them and there were not much exposure as there was today. Mainstream international entertainment streamed through Bollywood, Kollywood and Hollywood. Japan too was known as “Oshin”, “Suzuran” and many Anime (cartoons) were telecasted through Television since 1987. Chinese Action themed films were abundant in CD stores. Even with the open employment opportunities with South Korea the variety of Korean culture was closely linked with the border disputes and the ingredients in their meals.

Full House was a refreshing start to many who had no idea about the Hallyu wave. As the drama telecasted was initially a subtitled version, subtle points of their behaviour and OST music, was slowly introduced. Their more modern western look changed many taboos regarding “how Koreans would look like”. In 2008-2009 internet had become a homely assert. The search for more dramas, music hence started off, while others were enticed by the next telecast; Autumn in my heart. What was the main link between these two dramas? The main actress in both dramas was the same. Song Hye Kyo.

I crash into video stores randomly and see a well built K Drama section in many of them. Earlier dramas of famous Soap Opera stars such as Lee Minho, Song Hye Kyo, Park Shin Hye, Park Yoochun, Song Joong ki, Kim So Hyun, Jung Ji Hyun, Lee Seungri or with highest ratings were on display. At present it is ‘what was relevant during the past 10 hours’. I noticed “Legend of the Blue Sea” part by part being on the racks when the 12th episode of the drama was still being aired in South Korea. ‘Hwarang’ was a sensation due to its star studded cast representing S Hinee, BTS and ‘Goblin’ proved how patience to bring in the right cast can result in an awesome outcome. By the way, how is “Missing 9”.

The interesting links between K-Dramas K-Movies and K-pop are the OSTs and the actors or actresses in the dramas. Due to the immense popularity of either culture K-pop artistes take up drama or movie roles and the same artists or fellow group members are commonly and directly involved in the OSTs.  Hence more viewership in either category is achieved. Coming next are the Red Carpets and the Award ceremonies. Fans engage in bittersweet fights and sometimes the trophies are gained by pop idols instead of the dedicated drama veterans when the fan votes count. But these awards themselves arrange a platform to spread interest among the audience to watch and find out just why their favourite drama didn’t rank as the best this year.

Sri Lanka is slowly familiarizing with the world outside its shorelines, especially with South East Asia. Paying attention to this generic growth is KOICA and collaborating with the Embassy of South Korea in Colombo, they have arranged quite a range of activities so inquisitive, curious young Sri Lankans can get engaged in, experience the vibrant Korean Culture as well as spend time submerged in the Hallyu wave by organizing annual festivals, singing competitions, dance and speech contests, Korean language classes and an opportunity to listen to K pop music and watch K Dramas and many other activities free. Learning Korean is now not just limited as job perspectives.
Once I found a mixed artist music line up in Liberty Plaza. I know that there are luckier Sri Lankan fans out there as well who have bought caps, bags, clothing and other stuff affiliated with their Hallyu Fav’s name. I know many Hallyu fans were looking forward to Magnificent Seven, Resident Evil: Final Chapter, The Great Wall and xXx: Return of Xander. So until next time, it’s Annyeong.

Kushni Tillekeratne

Hallyu explosion in sri lanka (2)