From “A show-off” to “Geun-chan”, JKS hasn’t exploded yet

Credits: Daum Communications
English translations: tenshi_akuma

“I’m actually Prince of Asia, but…”, even though he said like this, we don’t feel unpleasant. In this way, he has no qualms about describing himself as such. He is the very person, Actor Jang Keun Suk. He celebrates 20 years as an actor this year, but it’s been only a couple of years since his merits started to be appreciated. JKS, who played the role of one of the children in the drama “Fairy Keommi”, has eventually become a top runner of the Hallyu boom. How did he succeed to grab the public’s attention? We have high expectations for the future of this smart young actor.


Was this boy a real show-off?
Jang Keun Suk debuted as a child model when he was six. Since then, he appeared on several dramas such as “Ladies in the Palace” and “Fairy Keommi”. In this way, he solidified his position as a child actor. When he turned seventeen, he appeared on “Nonstop 4” and attempted to change him into an adult actor. However, he didn’t draw much attention.

Instead, his pictures and writings he had posted on “My Space” became a hot topic. He was given the disgraceful title, “A show-off, Keun-Suk”. At that time, he was in his late teens. He was underage. Everyone in his late teens can experience such “bravado of youth”. Nevertheless, the public was cold toward him. JKS became a laughing-stock of the public, but he didn’t give in without giving any excuse for that.

After a while, he played the role of Kim Eun-ho, Hwang Jin-yi’s first love in the drama “Hwang Jin-yi” and got noticed. The public found that the show-off guy is quite a good actor. Then, he succeeded the transition from a child star to an adult actor, starring in various TV dramas such as “Hong Gil Dong” and “Beethoven Virus”. He showed us well-established performances based on his long acting career. He received high praise that he’s grown up well.

But this was not the end.

The show-off became “Guen-chan”
After his steady acting activities, he was back on TV with SBS drama “You Are Beautiful”. In the drama, he played the lead role, Hwang Tae-Kyung who puts on thick eyeliner and is full of confident. Without a doubt, Hwang Tae-Kyung was just like Jang Keun Suk.

He gained stardom for his role in YAB in Japan. He was infinitely good-looking and tender. On the other hand, his inside, acting and personality was quite tough. He was considered as a new-found star. In this way, Japanese people were really into him and he was placed as the best Hallyu actor following Bae Yong Joon. But still, in Korea he was considered as a show-off. Korean people couldn’t understand JKS who dances shuffle at concert venues and loves to put on eyeliner with long hair.


Then, his appearance on TV show “Kneedrop Guru” triggered to change Korean people’s minds. When he appeared on the show, he frankly told us the rumors surrounding him and behind-the-scene stories. He was honest and open. He willingly and boldly answered sharp questions.

The MC was sometimes going too far, but he showed us affirmative response. He succeeded to change the prejudiced eyes of the public. Rather, those who had been prejudiced towards him started to feel sorry for their past idea. JKS was as frank and positive as that.

If we were in his shoes, we would remain in a mysterious position to some extent. In general, stars are careful in words and deeds to protect their image. However, Jang Keun Suk hasn’t changed his way after becoming a Hallyu star. He openly says that he’s clubbing whenever he wants to dance shuffle. And he wants to confirm how popular he is. Looking at “Kneedrop Guru” from a different standpoint, their conversation might look light. But more than that, his diligence and positive way of living looked brilliant.


Geun-chan hasn’t exploded yet
Jang Keun Suk whom we met at “Love Rain” press conference was more profound than we had imagined. He said, “I’ve been called a Hallyu star, not an actor for several years. But my goal in life hasn’t been completed yet. Keeping tense situations is source for my living.”

Then he added, “Therefore, I’ll always try to perform at least once a year. In this way, I’m searching for my identity as an actor. No rest is one of the ways not to lose myself.” Judging from his remarks about his acting management, we can feel how sincere he is.

He is just a 26-year-old guy. Considering his age, we can say his life as an actor has only just begun. Jang Keun Suk is careful in woks, but on the other hand, frank and unconventional in himself. We are interested in his future.

A free spirit, Jang Keun Suk selected a “mellow” drama in 2012. “Love Rain” could bring blessed rain in his acting life? We are now paying a lot of attention to it.


32 thoughts on “From “A show-off” to “Geun-chan”, JKS hasn’t exploded yet”

  1. Hey Tenshi, thanks for the translation again.

    Actually, I had the same thoughts after watching Knee Drop Guru some time back, the bit where they touched on Sukkie being a show off. Perhaps, as I am no longer a teen, I could understand and appreciate his actions, weren’t we all young before and did some silly stuff in one way or another ? It’s all part of growing up, to err and learn …. let’s hope that with his openness and sincerity as well as his professionalism as an actor will soon win the hearts of his fellow country men … and ladies of course : )

    Sorry to side track, does anyone know if his Cri show, last in Seoul comes with English subtitles ? Would really want to purchase it but only managed to find those with Japanese subtitles in Yesasia.

  2. I’m crying right now …… I am so happy that these articles are finally being written T_T
    I am more than happy that I was loving Jang keun suk even before those articles started … the steps .. the struggling … the hard work and pain …. I’ve seen it all while following Jang keun suk …. words just can”t describe how proud I am of him … how inspired! …. Keun suk ah!! It’s raining tears of love where I am now! T_T

    Sis Tenshi , thank you so much for sharing <3

  3. Thanks Kaori chan.. I can see more media also started to know more in depth of this wonderful artiste.. it is like walking out of the dark tunnel with a rainbow in front… hope Sukkie will get more recognition & understanding after seeing his performance in Love Rain…

  4. I think he will become even more appreciated thru Love Rain because people that haven’t seen him before (Yoona fans and fans of Yoon’s dramas) will be exposed to what a wonderfully expressive actor he is. He’s a natural thru and thru and yes the article was exquisite because the part about Knee Drop Guru.. the MC could have easily tripped up someone that was false but his sincerity during that interview just shines thru. Yes, he can be silly but that is part of who he is. And yes, he can be arrogant at times but he’s more humble than arrogant. He’s always consistant in who he is and speaks from the heart without rehearsal which may sometimes get him into trouble or misunderstood but its obvious he cares about the person he is, the people around him, and the fans that appreciate him. All in all very good article and thank you so much for sharing.

  5. I liked this article… I also do not think JKS has hit the crest of his wave of popularity yet. I think the fact that he is as the article says, “A free spirit”… that intimidates many. Such people are usually artistic & creative and are too rare in this world.
    I hope some day Korea appreciates him as the Treasure he truly is!

  6. Hmmmm … sorry if I am a bother but just wondering why my comments are always waiting for moderation ? Is there something I’m not doing right ?

    • hi, i really must apologize for this. You’re doing nothing wrong, it’s just the silly system, so there are a few of you whose comments are always held by the system and waiting for moderation. currently there is nothing I can do T_T

      my apologies for the inconvenience ….

      • Hi Aphrael, thanks for your response above. Btw, on my question above, do you know if the 2011 Last in Seoul DVD come with Eng Sub ? Thks in advance !

      • Thks Stvcri / Aphrael, may just go ahead to get it afterall, it may take forever for the eng sub version to be available …

  7. Thank you Tenshi for translating. I am glad Korea is appreciating Sukkie more now. Sukkie will be fully satisfied once his nation considers him a “real” actor and acknowledge him full force. I am so glad that he is nominated for the Baeksangs as well for the Koreans will vote for his category and we will truly know that he is loved now in SoKor. :))

  8. I want to thank the one who posted this and make me realize once more how became an eel. I never became a fan since YAB. That was the first series I saw and it was like just an ordinary K-drama for me. Not until I searched for his biography— I always do that after watching a K-drama. As I’ve read the articles about him, I was unknowingly interested. Then videos next and there, I never expected that I would cry. He was the first artist who made me cry by just watching his videos. It was not all about pity but rather respect and love I’ve felt for him. He’s an amazing actor and the personality he has can never be replaced.

  9. Tenshi, Thanks for posting! I believe in the great talent of this kid. And whoever those kept on saying negative things about him cannot put him down. What Sukkie possesses is a real talent not just a product of media hype, and the fact that he is that kind who so honest to show everything about him is an indication that he is one of those few who will last for the reason that he is accepted for who and what he is in addition to his great potential. His millions of fans are the kind who love and appreciated him in everything he does.

  10. This is a great article. I’m so happy for Sukkie that the Korean media is starting to understand him and write in his favour. I hope the Korean public will catch on.

  11. one thing i wish..for everybody to read this!!!

    although misinterpretations cannot be avoided even in the future, i think Keun Suk has experienced that quite long enough, though. But as he said, “Sincerity will cross the heart of everyone eventually.” and look wha’t slowly happening these days..

    I hope more and more will open their eyes and come to realize the real him, his side that’s either being ignored or not being paid attention. That he is a rare person to find..and yet, there he is, silently struggling the non-recognition at the same time..keeping himself focused on his ultimate dream of being an experienced actor and artist.

    keun suk, we’ve been there with you and we will still be. 🙂

  12. Thanx Kaori-chan for your hard work translating the whole article ……

    Everyone not to worry ….. JKS’s hardwork will be recognised by all ….just wait for the day to come !!!

    Now is going to Suk Era !!!!

  13. hi tenshi, mind if i ask..when will the result of the Oricon Chart be see result of Team H: First Impression sales? thanks!!

  14. Thanks so much Kaori chan for translate this article. Very much appreciate!!!

    While reading this article, my heart is constricting and my tears keep falling…. I become too emotional. Every time the issue of Sukkie being Show-off and being misunderstood by many people in Korea make my heartache. If Sukkie doesn’t care and wish to be recognized by his own people so much, I would not feel this much hurt. Korean people should be proud of him… he had promoted so much goodness about Korea and attracted so many tourists who visit Korea because that’s his homeland. For the life of me, I would never understand what Sukkie did that considered so bad that Korean people would never forget nor forgive him.

    This article is great. It shows Sukkie’s great strength and determination and “never give up” motto despite of the public adversity. If I was in his shoes, I would fall down with shame and embarrassment even without my doing long time ago. Even now, it seems like Sukkie is fighting alone with the BIG Sharks (big agency co, big medias) in Korea, which impossible for him to win, but he’s still fighting for his spot in the spotlight. I admire him so much of his positive attitude and his resilience in obtaining his dream. Sukkie attacks life head on…..with passion, with humor, and with sincere heart. Sukkie, try your best to conquer the world!! If you fall short, it’s OK, at least you can say that you have tried your very best!!!!!

  15. Thank you Tenshi! My heart goes out to Sukkie when I read it and I agree with everyone comments. He will shine and he will be the brightest star because he is talented and intelligent, and he has ‘Eel power’. Sukkie gogogo!!


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