Theorizing the Korean Wave| Virtual Technology in Netflix K-Drama: Augmented Reality, Hologram, and Artificial Intelligence

Jinhee Park


South Korean television shows are so prominent on Netflix that “K-dramas” is a default search keyword. K-drama is considered a “genre” alongside action, anime, comedy, and romance. Analyzing two Netflix K-dramas, Memories of the Alhambra and My Holo Love, this article theorizes how K-dramas adopt new media and technology both as subject and narrative devices, incorporating the pertinent characteristics of each technology into a narrative. The article also examines wearable augmented reality technology and artificial intelligence holograms as narrative devices. In the digital platform era, K-drama adopts information and communication technology as televisuality through remediation. Central to theorizing virtual technology as dramatic content is the spatiality of the relationships between the real and the virtual, diegetic, and commercial worlds. Netflix K-dramas depict current information and communication technology and simulate the complications that arise when virtual gestures replace real gestures. This research theorizes how the enmeshment of digital and physical space transforms spatial boundaries, televisuality, and screens. By doing so, it evaluates Hallyu content as a site for technological hybridity and televisual studies.


K-drama, Hallyu, Netflix, new media, media platform, ICT, augmented reality, virtual reality, hologram, artificial intelligence

Full Text: