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Taiwanese drama

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Taiwanese drama

Taiwanese drama (Chinese: 台灣電視劇; pinyin: Táiwān Diànshìjù; commonly called TDrama or TWDrama by fans) refers to dramatic programming of television programming extended stories usually dramatizing relationships through the general range of ten to forty one-hour episodes. They are produced in Taiwan and have gained increasing popularity in the Mandarin-speaking community internationally. The term "Taiwanese drama" is applied to Taiwanese miniseries in general, even including those with greater elements of comedy than of drama.

Origins and range of popularity

During the rapid development of the Four Asian Tigers, the success of the Hong Kong television industry and its dramatic programming served as a major influence for television and programming in the other industrializing Asian nations, most notably Taiwan and South Korea.[1]

Many of these dramas have become popular throughout East Asia and Southeast Asia. Most popular Taiwanese dramas are also popular in China, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia.

Taiwanese dramas are also well known among expatriate overseas Asian people. Fan clubs have appeared in other countries outside Taiwan dedicated to the appreciation of Taiwanese drama. Fan clubs also involved several countries in Asia and elsewhere.


Taiwanese dramas are typically produced in Mandarin. Less commonly, they may be produced in Taiwanese Hokkien. Commonly characters will speak predominantly in Mandarin, but pepper their speech with Taiwanese. Sometimes characters, usually those playing the parts of parents or relatives coming from more rural and poorer areas, will speak in Taiwanese-accented Mandarin.

Subject matter

Taiwanese dramas typically focus more on romance than other television dramas. Crime dramas, police dramas, lawyer dramas, and doctor dramas are less common in Taiwan than romantic dramas. Taiwanese dramas tend to have less violence and sexual content than many other soap operas and primetime dramas.

Popular Taiwanese dramas generally divided into “idol dramas" (偶像劇) and Taiwanese Minnan dramas (台語劇). "Idol dramas" use the most popular singers and actors or actresses in the Taiwanese entertainment industry, most of whom are in their late teens or 20s, regardless of actual acting experience. The idol dramas cater primarily to the teen or 20s age group. The phenomenon started with 2001's Meteor Garden.

Typical subjects can include first teenage experiences with dating. Characters often have some dark secret or painful past that makes it difficult for them to form lasting relationships, and the drama may show characters finding a way to work through their deep personal problems. Love triangles are a common feature.

Taiwanese idol dramas share many similarities in genre with both Japanese dramas and Korean dramas, although they differ considerably in subject matter with Chinese dramas. For example, dramas based on nationalist sentiment and politics are much less common. Mainland Chinese dramas also use far more actors and actresses of varying ages. In contrast, the male and female leads and supporting actors in "idol dramas" are all exclusively in their late teens or 20s.

Many popular Taiwanese dramas are based on Japanese manga, using shōjo manga in particular although some seinen manga have been made into dramas as well. Some examples include Meteor Garden (based on Hana Yori Dango), It Started With a Kiss (based on Itazura na Kiss), Marmalade Boy, Peach Girl, and Love Buffet. In these adaptations, the characters' names are read as Chinese or are changed to more Chinese-sounding names, and of course, the setting is moved to Taiwan.

Furthermore, the popularity of Hong Kong dramas has resulted in the launch of a TVB affiliate network in the country, TVBS, with the network's entertainment channel sometimes producing local adaptations of popular Hong Kong dramatic programs.

Most Taiwanese speak Mandarin but the second common languages are Hakka and Taiwanese Hokkien.

List of Taiwanese dramas

List of actors and actresses

It is common for the actors and actresses in Taiwanese dramas - especially "idol dramas" - to also be pop singers and rock musicians. There are actors who are not from Taiwan, e.g. mainland China, Singapore, or Malaysia. For example Leon Jay Williams, Nicholas Teo, and Stella), though have worked or based their career in Taiwan.

List of on-screen couples

Actor Actress Drama(s)
Aaron Yan Gui Gui Mysterious Incredible Terminator
Aaron Yan Serena Fang Gloomy Salad Days
Aaron Yan Puff Kuo Just You
Aaron Yan Tia Li Fall in Love With Me
Alien Huang Summer Meng Sweet Sweet Bodyguard
Alien Huang Michelle Chen Lin Bei
Alien Huang Joanne Zeng Rogue Principal
Ao Quan Da Ya Brown Sugar Macchiato
Calvin Chen Reen Yu Love Buffet
Dylan Kuo Ady An The Outsiders I & II
Ethan Juan Joe Chen Fated to Love You
Jerry Huang Ella Chen The Rose
Jerry Yan Barbie Hsu Meteor Garden
Meteor Garden II
Jerry Yan Zhou Cai Shi Hot Shot
Jerry Yan Terri Kwan Starlit
Jerry Yan Ella Chen Down With Love
Jimmy Lin Yoo Ha Na My Lucky Star
Jiro Wang Genie Chuo Rolling Love
Jiro Wang Rainie Yang ToGetHer
Jiro Wang Cyndi Wang Momo Love
Jiro Wang Ku Hye-sun Absolute Darling
Joe Cheng Amber Kuo Channel-X
Joe Cheng Ariel Lin It Started With a Kiss
They Kiss Again
Love or Bread
Joe Cheng Kimi Hsia Magic Ring
Joseph Chang Rainie Yang Love You
Blue Lan Joe Chen Easy Fortune Happy Life
Mike He Ariel Lin Love Contract
Mike He Rainie Yang Devil Beside You
Why Why Love
Mike He Hebe Tien Bull Fighting
Mike He Charlene Choi Calling For Love
Mike He Janine Chang Sunny Happiness
Mike He Cyndi Wang Love Keeps Going
Ming Dao Joe Chen Let's Dance
The Prince Who Turns Into a Frog
Staying by Sunshine, Staying by You
Ying Ye 3 Jia 1
Nicholas Teo Amber Kuo Invincible Shan Bao Mei
Nicholas Teo Cyndi Wang Smiling Pasta
Peter Ho Barbie Hsu Summer's Desire
Show Luo Barbie Hsu Corner With Love
Show Luo Rainie Yang Hi My Sweetheart
Siwon Ivy Chen Skip Beat!
Sunny Wang Cheryl Yang Once Upon a Love
Vanness Wu Ady An Autumn's Concerto
Vic Chou Barbie Hsu Mars
Wallace Huo Penny Lin 100% Senorita
Wang Zi Gui Gui Brown Sugar Macchiato
Wang Zi Xiao Xun The Legend of Brown Sugar Chivalries
Wilber Pan Rainie Yang Miss No Good
Wilber Pan Sandrine Pinna Endless Love
Wu Chun Ariel Lin Tokyo Juliet
Wu Chun Ella Chen Hanazakarino Kimitachihe
Wu Chun Angela Chang Romantic Princess
Wu Chun Rainie Yang Sunshine Angel

See also


External links

  • Culture (Government Information Office)Taiwan Yearbook:
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