Sometimes you just have no patience for romance in a K-drama: either you are too in love with the Second Lead, the flashbacks of back hugs begin to bug, you wish the girl would close her eyes just once when she kisses, or the leads would rather talk with their eyes than with their words. Even better, though, is when the friendships rival the romance for their power and depth — and we get the feels we want. 

From the exultant throat of the Drama Fan comes the rallying cry: "Give me Bromance, not romance!" If you want the bromance, be sure not to miss these shows:

8. School 2013


This show drove me absolutely nutty through no fault of its own, but rather because the last time I saw Daniel Choi and Jang Na Ra together it was in Baby Faced Beauty, which I really hated. However, the epic bromance between Kim Woo Bin and Lee Jong Suk had such feels, I was able to put aside my unmerited teacher hate. Woo Bin is doing that "I'm a tough uncaring guy" act that hides the marshmallow center of his character. Jong Suk really sells the tension of a friendship that went wrong and a friend who wants to make it right. Just don't sniff your shoes anymore, OK guys?

7. Heirs

I know that there are three Woo Bin dramas are on this list, alright? Is it my fault he does bromance so well? I only wanted three things out of Heirs: The Kim brothers would stop fighting, the Youngs — father and son — would remain awesome, and Young Do would be happy. Since Young Do would only be happy when he and Kim Tan reconciled, they both had to grow up a little.

6. Crime Squad

I am convinced that Song Il Kuk's character, Se Hyuk, would not have lived to see justice done without his partner Tae Shik. Tae Shik, played by Sung Ji Roo, is a little Murtaugh to Il Kuk's Riggs, the steady one — keeping a grieving Se Hyuk in line just enough to have closure.  It's a more understated performance than many bromances on this list, but there is never any doubt of the sincerity of their connection.

5. It's Okay, That's Love


Sung Dong ll and Lee Kwang Soo stole our hearts as the adorable Dong Min and Soo Kwang.  (Lee Kwang Soo is another of those actors that creates bromances wherever he goes, but if I reference Nice Guy again, my drama buddies will kill me.) Their friendship made us laugh as the obvious comedic sidekicks to the story.  More than doctor and patient, Dong Min's strength gave Soo Kwang the loving support he needed when his own family turned their backs on their "damaged son." 

4. After School Lucky or Not Season One

 And I do mean Season One.  I liked season two well enough, but the driving factor in season one, the poignancy to the friendships and romance, was all derived from the bromance that was cut too short.  The guys of 5urprise managed to give the laughter a hint of mania and the true rapport that comes to friends who have weathered tough times. We're excited to see this bromance in real life when 5urprise performs at the 3rd Annual DramaFever Awards, presented by Toyota!

See the guys of 5urprise on After School: Lucky or Not:

3.Boys over Flowers


 The boys of the F4 all have their rich boy trials, and their friendship doesn't seem like bromance material until Kim Joon's Woo Bin (it's inescapable!) neatly answers the "Who would you date (from among the group of four)?" question.  His words illustrate an understanding about his friends' frailties while his tone conveys understanding and affection only found in true bromance.

2.Sungkyungkwan Scandal


You knew it was a bromance for all time when Crazy Horse went to find the virgin ghost and got an unexpected eyeful. Through Noron and Soron maneuvering, scandalous admissions, and some Very Careful sleeping arrangements, these friends stuck together through thick and thin. Plus, it stars Song Joong Ki and Park Yoo Chun, and therefore it automatically gets a high place on my list.

1. Gentleman's Dignity

From the very opening scene, when the men are all trying to pick up women at a funeral, you knew that these guys had been friends forever.  Their implicit understanding of how to cut their losses when the whole funeral goes south — without so much as a glance at each other — spoke volumes about the duration and nature of their friendship.  The show is built on the vignettes of their long friendship (my personal favorite was watching a K-drama and then rhapsodizing over a cell phone). The women have to integrate comfortably in their group, and each new partner has to understand the depth of emotion between them all. The delightful C story of Lee Jong Hyun and Kim Woo Bin forming their own bromance is just icing on this perfect bromance cake.

Honorable Mentions (OR I know! Don't kill me!): Shut Up Flower Boy BandBlade ManMoon that Embraces the Sun, and Coffee Prince.

What factors make the best bromance for you, drama fans? Let me know in the comments!