Have you ever wondered why most Thai people prefer to watch Korean dramas (K-drama) instead of Thai lakorn, even watching Thai Lakorn is one of the easiest ways to support their own nation and they do not even have to read the subtitles to understand or find the Thai dubbing.

The difference between Korean dramas and Thai Lakorn

Before knowing why most of the Thai people prefer to watch Korean dramas instead of Thai Lakorn, what we have to know first is the difference between these two. The difference can clearly be seen from the strength and weakness of Korean dramas and Thai lakorn that are different.


The biggest difference between Korean dramas and Thai Lakorn in the production and the Budget is the main thing that is used to determine the quality of the production. So the reason why Korean dramas have an advantage over Thai Lakorn is they have budget in entertainment industry. Compared to Thailand, the budget that the Korean government gives to the cultural/creative industry is totally different.

Health budget

Why Korea gives a lot Budget to the entertainment industry

It started when the Asian financial crisis happened in 1997. Kim Dae Jung, Korean president in 1998, aimed to use the soft power to restore the financial situation at that time. So he changed the policy to increase the budget for the entertainment industry and also used the cooperation between the ministry of culture and the private company to expand the target for the Movies, the Dramas and the Songs they produced, not just in their country but also the foreign.

After a few years, in 2002 Korea succeeded with a drama named ‘Winter Sonata’. The drama became popular in many countries around the world, especially in Japan.

The series is widely considered to be the Korean drama that launched the Korean wave throughout Asia and worldwide. This makes Korea even aim for this industry, exempt the tax and  increase more budget for the entertainment industry to produce more work.

In Thailand, soft power such as entertainment is not the main industry of the country, so the budget that the government supports the entertainment industry cannot be compared to Korea fairly.


The other strength of Korean dramas that can clearly be seen is the realistic in the dramas. Most of the netizens said that realism is the main thing that makes them choose Korean dramas instead of Thai Lakorn. This can also link to Thai Lakorn weakness which is the unrealistic.

Most of the Korean dramas will focus on the naturalness of the characters and the dialogue, while most Thai Lakorn will focus on the emotion of the characters, the dialogue will focus on the satisfaction of the audience instead of the realistic, which might be the reason why Korean dramas are easier for the audience to reach than in Thai lakorn. For example the makeup of the character when they are sick or when the female lead have to disguised as a man.


Acting skills

Dramabeans Korean drama recaps

Not only the realistic or the production but also the ability of the actor/actress. Most Thai Lakorn producers focus on the looks of the characters too much or choose the one who is famous to grab the audience’s attention which makes them sometimes overlook the suitability of the characters and the acting skills that are the most important thing in the actor. While in Korea, people who are going to role in the drama or movie will have to be trained in the company until they pass the company’s standard first.

To sum up, it does not mean that Korean Dramas are better than Thai Lakorn there are many factors that makes each country’s entertainment industry different and many reasons people use to choose what they gonna watch and one of them is the personal preference, so this blog can only explain the overview of the differences in Thai and Korean dramas.