• Ji Soo, Park Bo Young and Park Hyung Sik star in the South Korean drama 'Strong Woman Do Bong Soon.'

Ji Soo, Park Bo Young and Park Hyung Sik star in the South Korean drama 'Strong Woman Do Bong Soon.' (Photo : YouTube/JTBC Drama)

Successful K-Drama often have the same elements: a love-hate relationship between the main protagonists, an antagonist best friend or mother, and a dramatic, slow-moving first kiss. Another common element is when characters betray their friends, and here are four key reasons why they do it.

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In several Korean dramas, characters are forced to betray their friends in order to save their family members. Sometimes, they turn their backs on their friends to aid an ailing parent or save kids who are being held captive, OSEN (via Soompi) reported.

For example, in "Golden Cross," the lead character Do Yoon vows to seek revenge against the leader of a powerful organization that framed his father for murder. However, Do Yoon later revealed that the leader of the said organization is the father of the woman he loves.

In "Dream High," Hye Mi betrays Baek Hee during an entrance audition for Kirin High School. Hye Mi is desperate to get into Kirin High School in order to be trained as a mainstream pop idol and pay off her father's debt to a gangster.

Money and power

This is another common reason for characters to betray their friends in K-Dramas. When the human desire for money and power kicks in, characters tend to undervalue their relationships and are forced to betray their friends to get the prize.

In "The Innocent Man," Jae Hee (Park Si Yeon) is desperate to escape poverty, so he betrays Ma Ru (Song Joong Ki) by choosing a rich CEO over him.

Lust for power also played a part in Joon Hyuk's betrayal of his friend, Jung Woo, in order to gain power and influence in "Defendant."


A good example for this is "Missing 9," where Tae Ho killed one of his friends in order to survive the island.


This usually happens when unrequited love is involved, such is the case of supporting character Oh Min Ji in "Boys Over Flowers." Min Ji was Jan Di's first friend when she transferred to Shinhwa High; however, when Jan Di develops a connection with Jun Pyo, the former sabotages the latter as Min Ji harbors deep feelings for Jun Pyo.

In related news, Lee Min Ho, who played Gu Jun Pyo in "Boys Over Flowers," is scheduled to enlist in the military in May, Soompi reported.