Black Dog preview: tvN K-Drama starring Seo Hyun-Jin, Ra Mi-Ran, and Ha Joon shows how cutthroat being a teacher in Korea can be

Black Dog -- K-Drama
Black Dog, the new tvN K-drama starring Seo Hyun-Jin, Ra Mi-Ran, and Ha Joon, shows just how competitive and ruthless being a teacher can be. Pic credit: Total Variety Network (tvN)

If there is one thing Korean television is excellent at doing with their dramas, it is taking subjects and topics that may seem mundane and turning them into viewership gold. The Total Variety Network (tvN) easily has this concept down.

Over the years, tvN utilized a wide array of subjects and topics for their K-dramas.

This includes an “underqualified” politician becoming president (Designated Survivor: 60 Days), an art curator who happens to be the biggest fan for a K-pop idol (My Private Life), and more recently, a love story going beyond the barriers that separate North and South Korea (Crash Landing on You).

Now tvN released its newest K-drama, Black Dog (블랙독). Starring Seo Hyun-Jin, Ra Mi-Ran, and Ha Joon. It showcases just how cutthroat it is to be a teacher in South Korea.

The Black Dog has arrived

Black Dog — also known as Black Dog: Being a Teacher — is the story of Go Ha-Neul (Seo Hyun-Jin) and her career as a teacher.

In the past, Ha-Neul was in a huge accident. She was saved by a temporary teacher who sadly lost his life in the heroic endeavor. Because of that moment in her life, Ha-Neul decided to become a teacher too.

Years later, Go Ha-Neul becomes a temporary teacher in a private high school. With the help of Park Seong-Soon (Ra Mi-Ran), an experienced teacher who is the Chief of the Faculty of Advanced Studies mentoring her, Ha-Neul grows as a teacher and as a person.

From what can be discerned from the first two episodes of Black Dog, the reason why it is titled such is that Go Ha-Neul is the “black dog.” Despite being a temporary teacher with no experience, she seems to be more than just good when it comes to the basics of being a teacher.

Because of how good Go Ha-Neul is as a teacher and the fact that some believe she got her position through connections instead of accolades (something looked down upon given how competitive the job market in general is), people mark her as a “black dog.”

Since Go Ha-Neul is the Black Dog, she has to prove to her fellow teachers, students, and even her superiors that she is deserving of the full-time teaching position that will supposedly be hers at the end of the year.

Right now, two episodes have aired. Black Dog is turning out to be another worthwhile series formed under the tvN banner. The K-drama made its debut on Monday, Dec. 16.

It earned an AGB Nielsen Korea viewership rating of 3.331 percent for the nation and 3.574 percent for Seoul. The second episode’s viewership the following day has seen a dramatic increase to 4.412 percent for the nation and 5.064 percent for Seoul.

Subsequent episodes for Black Dog will air on tvN on Mondays and Tuesdays at 9:30 p.m. KST with 16 episodes. For international audiences in the Americas, Black Dog is available to watch for free on Rakuten Viki.

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