In an ideal world, everyone would stay up-to-date with all the latest dramas. Alas, reality is not as kind, and falling behind in a K-drama is inevitable. The worst thing is that you don’t even realise the severity of your situation until it’s too late.
Here are the five stages of falling behind in a K-drama:
1. False hope
At the start, falling behind doesn’t seem like that big of a deal. You might tell yourself that it’s fine, that catching up on two episodes is easy - after all it’s only two hours, right? Even the most seasoned drama watching veteran will fall into this trap time and time again, because there’s just something so incredibly deceptive about having to catch up on ‘one episode.' Before you know it, catching up one episode will quickly devolve into catching up on five or even the whole series. When you hit that point, you know that all hope is lost.
2. Avoiding spoilers
Spoilers are the bane of any television show follower's existence! They're fatal for those who struggle with watching things as soon as they come out. After realising the sad truth that catching up will not be as easy as we had initially thought, the next stage in this sad story is the avoidance of spoilers. Because how can we (eventually) enjoy all the drama episodes we’ve missed if we find out that the leads kiss in episode 8? Or that the male lead loses his memory in episode 12? Or that they’re maybe related???? Say goodbye to the internet and social media until you’ve managed to catch up, because you never know when spoilers might appear.
There’s a special type of pain that comes from hearing people talk about something that you haven’t watched yet. While everyone is hyped up about how good the latest drama is, you’re stuck alone in your spoiler-less bubble. This is definitely one of the most difficult stages of falling behind; you can’t discuss whether you think the two side characters knew each other in a past life, you can’t speculate about whether the main character is really going to die. Basically, life sucks.
4. Late night binge sessions
By this point, all the FOMO will spur you into probably ill-advised action. The need to understand what everyone is talking can push you over the edge and you find yourself embarking on a midnight drama-watching binge. You have ten episodes to catch up on until you’re up-to-date, but there’s only eight hours until you have to ‘wake up’ the next day! You’ll make it work, even if it means watching two episodes simultaneously.
5. Finally catching up
At long last, you have finally caught up. Now you can understand the world again why everyone was freaking out about fried chicken, or weeping whenever that particular song from that particular OST played. But this joy is bittersweet. By the time you’ve caught up, the hype over your drama has settled down and everyone’s already moved on to the next big drama.
And so the cycle begins again.
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