K-Drama Confessional #7: Ranking the 12 best Konglish words from manner legs to chocolate abs
Welcome back to K-drama Confessional! It’s been a while since our last article, but we are coming back strong with a great topic we think you’ll all love! If you are intrigued and love Konglish words like “Manner Legs” and “Skinship,” then keep on reading! You won’t be disappointed!
On our last K-drama Confessional, we debated who was the best kisser in Dramaland. And this week we are tackling some of our favorite Konglish (Korean-English) words and phrases, ones that we hear time and time again in K-dramas. To seasoned drama watchers, these words may already be part of your daily vocabulary. It’s so hard not to pick them up!
This time we thought it would be fun to do something different, so we are bringing you a countdown of our top 12 favorite Konglish words and phrases!
Rara: KD and I LOVE Konglish words, especially when you start to dig into the root of how the Konglish word came to be. We’ve assembled these handy little guides for your reference!
KD: We have a list of 12 Konglish terms, counting down to our ultimate favorite! And trust us, it was not easy to narrow it down to a favorite. Let’s get started with number 12!
12. Hand Phone
Rara: Ok, let’s start off with a word that everyone should be super familiar with — it’s impossible to have a modern-day drama without hand phones!
KD: It’s so true! I love to see what each of the characters’ hand phones look like! And dramas showcase them so often that by the end of the first few episodes, you can easily identify the main characters simply by their hand phone.
Rara: I don’t know about you, but over my years of drama watching, I’ve become hyper sensitive to the latest trends in hand phones.
KD: Yes! watching dramas over the years definitely allows you to see how technology has changed. Even if you watch a drama that is four or five years old, the cell phones they use look ancient!
KD: I also just think it’s adorable that they call cell phones "hand phones." It totally makes sense because it is a phone that you can carry around in your hand.
Rara: Genius! If only English was always that logical…
KD: This is a term that often gets thrown around in dramas and used to confuse me.
Rara: I know! I had to look it up when I first started hearing it. I kinda wish we often adopted this word in English! “On the house” just doesn’t sound as good.
KD: True. I never turn down free stuff!
10. One Shot
Rara: K-dramas have taught me wayyyy more than I’d ever thought I’d know about soju. Seriously, it’s basically a main character of every show at this point!
KD: It’s scary how true that is! Soju is involved whenever a character is happy, sad, celebrating, or pining over a forbidden love!
Rara: One shots for everyone!
KD: Netizen is a Dramaland term that confused me so much when I first started getting into K-dramas and the online fan base associated with them.
Rara: Whenever I think of netizens I immediately think of two dramas: The Greatest Love and My Love From Another Star. Both dramas feature netizens as if they were another character, having a huge impact on Dokko Jin and Cheon Song Yi respectively. The netizens could be so mean sometimes!
KD: Rule number 1: DON’T PISS OFF THE NETIZENS! Rule number 2: See rule 1.
Rara: That could not be more true! We love you netizens!
Rara: This term was completely foreign to me until recently. If you listen carefully to the dialogue in a lot of dramas you’ll often hear this word pop up, but it isn’t always translated.
KD: It’s definitely a helpful term, especially since in English we don’t have a specific word to describe this point in a relationship! Maybe this term will start to catch on? I’m hopeful.
Rara: I am too. In case you need another reference for the term “some,” check out this adorable video!
7. S Line
KD: The thing I love about the term “S Line” is that it is such a literal description of the body type being described.
Rara: Yep! There isn’t any question how this term came to be! It’s a perfect example of calling it like you see it.
KD: Using the word "line" to describe people's bodies seems to be growing in popularity in Korea. In fact, I found this whole webpage devoted to explaining all the different Konglish body descriptors such as "V Line" and "B Line." It's quite fascinating.
Rara: For sure! Netizens sure do like to categorize everything!
KD: I definitely catch myself saying “selca” instead of “selfie” when I’m with my non-drama obsessed friends...man do I get some weird looks!
Rara: We’ve all be there KD. I really prefer the term selca over selfie any day!
KD: It does sound a lot cooler! And I'm in love with anything that brings me closer to being like Cheon Song Yi.
5. Manner Hands
KD: Now, Rara, I know Manner hands are one of you favorite topics!
Rara: It just cracks me up every time I see a photo featuring manner hands. It’s like part extreme awkwardness and part extreme courtesy; a winning combination in my book!
KD: One of my life goals is to get a photo with a Korean star. Bonus points if he uses his manner hands!
Rara: We’re getting close to the end now, and ranking these Konglish terms is getting harder and harder!
KD: I know what you mean! So many good words, so little time. But skinship definitely had to make it into our top 4!
Rara: I love how skinship is used as a tool to progress both the plot and main relationship in a K-drama. From backhugs to piggyback rides, when done right, skinship gets me right in the feels!
KD: My personal favorite moment of skinship is the “accidental cuddle” — when two characters somehow end up sleeping in the same bed and attempting to keep their distance somehow manage to find their way into each other’s arms! It’s just so adorable!
Rara: Ahhh that’s such a great one! Readers, what is your favorite type of K-drama skinship? Let us know in the comments below!
KD: I can’t wait to read about those!
3. Chocolate Abs
Rara: Awwww yes. This is another perfectly coined term! They really can look like a chocolate bar!
KD: I’m surprised no one else has made the connection in English before! We just get the terms “ripped” or “washboard abs.” Chocolate abs is so much more fun!
Rara: Enough said.
KD: This is certainly K-drama staple! It’s just so cute and encouraging at the same time!
Rara: A well placed “fighting” can really help you make it through the day! I find that I use this often even just to motivate myself.
KD: So adorable! Fighting is just such an awesome and positive note of encouragement. I love when characters show their support for one another by crying "fighting!" and pumping their fist! It's just the best.
Rara: In case you need more, be sure to check out this fantastic FIGHTING! GIF article here.
1. Manner Legs
Rara: We finally made it to number one. This was not an easy decision to make!
KD: It really wasn’t! But I think we can all agree that manner legs are pretty much the best thing in the entire world. The end.
Rara: I remember the first time I encountered manner legs — it was a photo of Rain filming My Lovable Girl. Little did I know that manner legs were actually a thing!
KD: I wish I was tall enough to have to use my manner legs… One of my favorite manner leg examples is of Kwang Soo receiving an award. No need to adjust the microphone! Just adjust your height! Brilliant.
Rara: So great!
Rara: Well that wraps up our top 12 countdown of the best Konglish words!
KD: We hope you enjoyed this article! Please comment down below letting us know what other Konglish words you love. Or let us know if you agree with our order! Do you love manner hands more than skinship? We'd love to hear your thoughts!
Rara: And don’t forget to check out the previous installments of K-drama Confessional!
KD Bonbon loves dogs and enjoys listening to K-pop and watching Korean dramas in her spare time. Whenever she’s not working her 9-5 corporate job, she’s writing for DramaFever News. Follow KD Bonbon on Twitter and read her latest article HERE!