Fans of LGBT+ K-pop and K-drama can celebrate since we are seeing more positive representation in South Korean pop culture. Previously, gay or effeminate characters in K-dramas were utilised as a comedy, but today even Korean productions are experimenting in the BL (Boys’ Love) genre popularised in Thailand and Taiwan. The BL K-drama ‘Ocean Likes Me,’ which stars Holland and actor Han Gi-chan, is now airing.
With the topic of LGBT+ concerns becoming less taboo in conservative countries like South Korea, we’re seeing a growing number of idol stars take on a variety of roles. Minho from SHINee, Rowoon from SF9, Jun from A.C.E, Hyuk from VIXX, and others have all played LGBT+ characters, while NCT’s Jaehyun’s first acting job was almost a BL film remake. Now, ‘Ocean Likes Me’ is making headlines for casting Holland, the first out homosexual K-pop idol.
On January 27, it was announced that the primary leads for ‘Ocean Likes Me,’ a forthcoming BL K-drama, had been cast. It’s a romantic comedy about a budding chef who aspires to build his own beach restaurant and his blossoming romance with a failing artist.
Han Gi-chan portrays Han Bada, a stern businessman whose main challenge is getting clients to his udon restaurant. Tommy, played by Holland, is a nice character who has returned home after a disappointing career. The drama will premiere in the first half of 2022 and will follow the two as they help each other achieve their goals.
Han Gi-first chan’s notable part was as the bold and charming Tae-Joo in the popular 2020 BL K-drama ‘Where Your Eyes Linger.’ His most recent appearance was in the suspense thriller ‘Find Me If You Can,’ which also starred Astro’s Rocky and MJ. While Holland has a large international fan base, he was shunned by many in the K-pop business after coming out as gay. He has since rebounded, collaborating with the likes of Gucci, been welcomed by Burberry, and even dabbled in acting with the film ‘Ocean Likes Me.’
Fans are happy for Holland as they made tweets like, “Holland starring in a BL is amazing because 1. He deserves the recognition and 2. Gay representation by actual gay people is the best thing in the world.” One K-drama fan shared, “Eyo Han Gi Chan gonna deliver once again.” Another posted, “Can’t believe I m going to see han gi chan again 😭😭😭😭 been waiting for this.”