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Twitter reveals its top 20 most Tweeted K-content

By Kara Santos Published Oct 21, 2021 2:03 pm

Korean culture continues its worldwide domination in the realm of movies, television, music, and more.

Over the past few years, K-dramas have risen in global popularity, becoming some of the highest-rated shows on television and getting the attention of giant streaming platforms like Netflix. 

YeonJeong Kim, Head of Global K-pop and K-content Partnerships at Twitter, shared valuable data insights on the global popularity of K-Culture from music to drama, webtoon, movie and beyond during the recently held MU:CON 2021.

The results of data aggregation were conducted by Twitter and VAIV company through big data text mining techniques that analyzed global English Tweets from July 2018 to June 2021.

Take note, the titles don’t include recent hits like Squid Game, which recently broke Netflix records, and Hometown Cha-Cha-Cha because of the time frame of the analysis.

Many of the K-dramas, movies, and webtoons on the Top 20 lists will be very familiar to Filipino audiences, who, like the rest of the world, have been swept up in the Korean wave.

Most-mentioned K-dramas show clear connection to K-pop

Top 20 Most Mentioned K-dramas on Twitter in the World. Photo via Twitter. 

According to Twitter, historical zombie series Kingdom took the top spot in the four most-mentioned K-dramas around the world. Itaewon Class (based on the original webtoon) follows at number two, True Beauty at number three, and Vincenzo at number four. 

Twitter also noted that many popular K-dramas have ties to the world of K-pop music. True Beauty and Vincenzo both include roles for K-pop stars, with Cha Eun-woo (a member of the male K-pop group ASTRO) appearing in True Beauty, and Ok Taec-yeon (a member of the male K-pop group 2PM) starring in Vincenzo.

Twitter’s analysis of the word cloud for Tweets mentioning Itaewon Class confirmed that many Tweets about Itaewon Class mentioned the OST song “Sweet Night” by V, a member of the male K-pop group BTS. 

The word cloud also connected Itaewon Class to 11 other dramas during the first half of 2021. This shows that interest in Itaewon Class led fans to other K-dramas, making Itaewon Class a critical influence for K-content and new fans getting more interested, according to the analysis.

Interest grows for webtoons turned into K-dramas

Top 20 Most-Mentioned K-Webtoons on Twitter in the World. Photo via Twitter.

Original webtoons are also seeing increased interest among viewers, particularly for webtoons that have been turned into K-dramas.

True Beauty, which ranked third in the most-mentioned K-dramas on Twitter, ranked first in the most-mentioned K-webtoons on Twitter. 

Sweet Home, which was turned into a Netflix original series, ranked second in the most mentioned K-webtoons. Itaewon Class, which ranked fourth, was later turned into a K-drama, while Navillera (sixth) not only was later turned into a K-drama, but also benefited from BTS member V recommending the drama on a fan cafe. 

Most-mentioned movies show the impact of Korea’s biggest directors

Top 20 Most-Mentioned K-Movies on Twitter in the World. Photo via Twitter.

Just three film directors accounted for 9 of the top 20 K-movies that are most-mentioned on Twitter.

Parasite, directed by Bong Joon-ho, (which won four Academy Awards in 2020) took the top spot for the most-mentioned K-movie on Twitter, followed by the critically-acclaimed Minari. However, Bong’s other movies, Snowpiercer, Okja, Mother, and The Host, all made the top 20 list. 

Directors Park Chan-wook and Yeon Sang-ho also accounted for two K-movies apiece, with Oldboy and Thirst, and Peninsula and Train to Busan, respectively.

Twitter’s analysis of Tweets related to Bong Joon-ho showed keywords related to Parasite, Mother, and Snowpiercer respectively, as well as works by other prominent directors Park Chan-wook and Lee Chang-dong.

The analysis also shows that interest in Bong Joon-ho helped to drive wider interest in movies from Korea to a global scale.

K-content will continue to expand

The head of Twitter’s Global K-pop and K-content partnerships believes that K-content will continue to expand in the future, gathering new audiences around the world.

“Twitter has proven that K-pop - along with many other fandoms - thrive due to the characteristics of Twitter: live, public, and conversational. People are consuming K-content through various channels, but in the end, the conversations are being held on Twitter,” said Yeon-jeong Kim in a media release.

“K-content has limitless potential as the fandom culture that started with K-pop has taken an interest in other forms of Korean content, which has led to the spread of the culture. Twitter will dedicate itself in the fullest to supporting the globalization of K-content and the fandom it empowers,” they added.

In addition to Twitter, the MU:CON 2021 conference also included speeches from Harvard Business School professor Anita Elberse, Billboard columnist Jeff Benjamin, and singer-songwriter Jenna Andrews (songwriter for BTS’ ‘Butter’), as well as other famous figures from Korea and the rest of the world.