From left: Singer Kai of Exo, comedian Park Na-rae and singer Kim Hee-chul of Super Junior work on a mission in “New World.” (Netflix)
With the arrival of Disney+ and Apple TV+ setting off fierce competition in the country’s video streaming market, Netflix is seeking to cement its top position with a slew of new reality shows.
The global streaming giant is premiering three original Korean variety shows for the year-end season, hoping to continue its dominance there on the back of recent global hit drama series like “Squid Game,” “My Name” and “Hellbound.”
Starring six celebrities -- singers Lee Seung-gi and Kim Hee-chul of Super Junior and Kai of Exo, rapper Eun Ji-won of Sechs Kies, actor Cho Bo-ah and comedian Park Na-rae -- “New World” kicked off Netflix’s parade of reality shows, releasing the first two episodes on Nov. 20.
The show revolves around the stars earning virtual currency, which can be cashed in on the final day of their stay on a utopian island called New World by completing different missions.
With two new episodes released each week, “New World” revealed its third and fourth episodes Saturday.
Star TV director Kim Tae-ho will make his highly anticipated Netflix debut on Dec. 11 with “The Hungry and the Hairy.”
“The Hungry and the Hairy” (Netflix)
Kim, who was behind two of South Korea’s longest-running and most successful variety shows -- “Infinite Challenge” and “Hang Out With Yoo” -- presents a travel program with K-pop star and actor Rain and TV personality Ro Hong-chul.
Rain tastes local food in “The Hungry and the Hairy.” (Netflix)
The 10-part series features the two celebrities exploring beautiful places and tourist destinations in Korea via motorcycle, introducing various local food specialties to the viewers. Scenic views of Korean cities and the countryside are presented with music by veteran guitarist and singer-songwriter Lee Sang-soon.
Finally, upcoming dating show “Singles’ Inferno,” involving 10 single contestants hoping to escape a deserted island as couples, will feature a panel of celebrities with proven star power.
With veterans of the entertainment industry in model Hong Jin-kyung, Super Junior’s Kyuhyun, rapper Hanhae and actor Lee Da-hee forming the panel, the program will feature romance, heartwarming events and unexpected twists -- all the classic elements of a reality dating show.
From left: Rapper Hanhae, model Hong Jin-kyung, actor Lee Da-hee and singer Kyuhyun star on the panel of “Singles’ Inferno.” (Netflix)
Produced jointly by Netflix and local cable channel JTBC, two episodes of the eight-part show will be released every Saturday, starting Dec. 18.
By Lee Si-jin (email@example.com