Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-joo

Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-joo (Korean역도요정 김복주; RRYeokdoyojeong Gimbokju) is a 2016–2017 South Korean television series starring Lee Sung-kyung in the title role, with Nam Joo-hyuk. It is a coming-of-age sports drama, inspired by the life of Olympic gold-medalist Jang Mi-ran.[1][2] It aired on MBC every Wednesday and Thursday at 22:00 (KST) from November 16, 2016, to January 11, 2017.

Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-joo
Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo Poster.jpg
Promotional poster
Created byHan Hee
Written byYang Hee-seung
Directed byOh Hyun-jong
  • Kim Joon-suk
  • Jung Se-rin
Country of originSouth Korea
Original languageKorean
No. of episodes16
Executive producers
  • Oh Min-soo
  • Kim Sang-heon
  • Lee Jin-duk
  • Kim Sun-chul
  • Park Hwa-jin
EditorOh Sere-na
Camera setupSingle camera
Running time60 minutes
Production companyChorokbaem Media
Original networkMBC TV
Picture format1080i (HDTV)
Audio formatDolby Digital
Original releaseNovember 16, 2016 (2016-11-16) –
January 11, 2017 (2017-01-11)

The series resonated with the young demographic; although it averaged 4.6% in audience share and received the lowest viewership ratings in its time-slot throughout its run,[3][4] it gained a cult following among young viewers and received mostly favorable reviews.[5][6] The series also received popularity overseas, particularly in the Philippines.[7]


Kim Bok joo (Lee Sung-Kyung), a young woman chasing her dream of weightlifting on an athlete college campus, develops a crush on her friend Jung Joon-Hyung's (Nam Joo-Hyuk) older brother, Jung Jae-Yi (Lee Jae-Yoon). At first, Joon Hyung teases her and goes along with her act, even helping her, but soon finds himself falling in love with her. This series is a coming-of-age story about a group of college athletes who are fighting for their dreams, experiencing and finding love in the process, and growing every step of the way.



A naturally gifted weightlifter with an ambitious and outgoing personality who attends a sports university. Growing up with her father who was a former weightlifter, she is inspired to follow in his footsteps. She stands up for herself and her friends. She does not hesitate to beat people up if they provoke her. She hides her insecurities and fragile heart under her strong exterior. She at first experiences a one-sided love with Jung Jae-yi but later falls in love with his brother/cousin Jung Joon-hyung.
He is a talented swimmer with a playful personality who attends the same university as Bok-joo. He and Bok-joo had been childhood friend when they were in elementary school. At first, when they meet again at the university, they do not recognize each other, until an incident occurs that refreshes their memories. He is raised by his kind aunt and uncle after his mother leaves him behind and moves to Canada, where she starts a second family. Joon-hyung suffers from a trauma and often during his tournaments, suffers a panic attack and makes a false start leading to his getting disqualified. He enjoys teasing Bok-joo, but gradually falls in love with her.
Joon-hyung's cousin and ersatz older brother, with a kind and gentle personality. A former athlete who becomes an obesity doctor due to an injury. He becomes Bok-joo's first love (without his realizing it) after he kindly lends her his umbrella on the street, even though at the time she is a complete stranger, and she enrolls in his obesity clinic so that she can meet him, although her need as a weightlifter is to put on weight rather than losing it. He treats Bok-joo like a younger sister and generally shows support to his brother's decision to like and date Bok-joo.
Bok-joo's roommate and Joon-hyung's ex-girlfriend. She still has feelings for him and initially becomes jealous of his and Bok-joo's strong relationship, leading her to expose Bok-joo's secret trips to Jae-yi's clinic to Bok-joo's father and coaches at one point. After Bok-joo saves her life and sent her to the hospital on time, her relationship between her and Bok-joo and Joon-hyung gradually improves. She is a top-class rhythmic gymnast, who won a silver medal at the Asian Games at the age of eighteen, but she returns to the sports university due to a decline in her performance. Shi-ho is an overachiever and is under constant stress about her weight and skills, which led to her break-up with Joon-hyung, a psychiatric eating disorder and act rashly in various situations.


Weightlifting teamEdit

  • Cho Hye-jung as Jung Nan-hee 정난희, despite her strength is a very feminine girl who dreams of romance and always willing to spread happiness.
  • Lee Joo-young as Lee Seon-ok 이선옥, is direct, loves to eat, and does not show much affection but is loyal to her friends. She eventually "demonstrates" some potential interest in Tae-Kwon.
  • Choi Moo-sung as Yoon Deok-man 윤덕만, Professor/Coach
  • Jang Young-nam as Choi Sung-eun 최성은, Coach
  • Oh Eui-shik as Bang Woon-ki 방운기, the Team Captain who had a newborn child with his girlfriend
  • Lee Bit-na as Bitna 빛나, Bok-joo's junior
  • Moon Ji-yoon as Sang Chul 상철
  • Jo Mi-nyeo
  • Yoo Joon-hong
  • Noh Yeong-joo
  • Lee Ye-bin

Swimming teamEdit

  • Ji Il-joo as Jo Tae-Kwon, the very friendly and silly roommate of Joon-hyung who eventually shows some interest in Seon-Ok.
  • Kim Jae-hyun as Kim Jae-hyun[12]
  • Kim Woo-hyuk as Kim Woo-hyuk[13]
Joon-hyung's junior. He has a habit of dating women, then ghosting them, and thus is hated by all his female peers.
Joon-hyung's senior. He has a crush on Shi-ho, and treats Joon-Hyung with a more gruff demeanor.
  • Lee Ji-hoon
  • Kim Nam-woo
  • Kwon Hyuk-beom

Rhythmic gymnastics teamEdit

A rising star collegiate rhythmic gymnast who competes with Shi-ho.
  • Ray Yang as Sung Yoo-hwi, Coach
  • Lee Seul
  • Oh Ha-nui
  • Kim Yoo-ji
  • Jung Yoo-jin

People around Bok-jooEdit

Bok-joo's father, a former weightlifter who owns a fried chicken restaurant
Bok-joo's uncle, a part-time aspiring actor who works at the restaurant

People around Joon-hyungEdit

  • Jung In-gi as Joon-hyung's paternal uncle and foster father
  • Lee Jung-eun as Joon-hyung's paternal aunt and foster mother


A doctor at the Hanwool College of Physical Education. She has a crush on Jae-yi.
  • Park Won-sang as Psychotherapist
  • Kim Yoon-ji
  • Kim Chae-eun
  • Kim Cha-kyung
  • Seo Wang-seok
  • Kim Hyun-jung as Dormitory's house mistress
  • Jung Hyun-seok as Dormitory's house mistress
  • Park Jung-min
  • Park Gun-lak
  • Lee Joon-hee
  • Lee Suk-jin
  • Lim Seo-jung
  • Yoo Yeong-bin
  • Lim Uk-jin
  • Lim Geun-seo
  • Jung Soo-in
  • Seo Kwang-jae
  • Choi Nam-wook
  • Tae Won-seok
  • Heo Min-kang
  • Jeon Ji-ahn

Special appearances (Cameo)Edit


The series is written by Yang Hee-seung of the 2015 romantic comedies Oh My Ghostess and High School King of Savvy; and directed by PD Oh Hyun-joong of 7th Grade Civil Servant. The first script reading took place on August, 2016 at MBC broadcasting station in Sangam, Seoul, South Korea.[17][18]

Original soundtrackEdit

Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo OST
Soundtrack album by
Various artists
LabelKT Music
Star entry entertainment

OST Part 1Edit

Released on November 16, 2016 (2016-11-16)
1."You & I"Kim Jong-wan (Nell)3:37
2."You & I" (Inst.) 3:37
Total length:7:14

OST Part 2Edit

Released on November 23, 2016 (2016-11-23)
1."From Now On" (앞으로)Kim Min-seung3:33
2."From Now On" (Inst.) 3:33
Total length:7:06

OST Part 3Edit

Released on November 30, 2016 (2016-11-30)
1."Dreaming" (꿈꾼다)Han Hee-jung4:02
2."Dreaming" (Inst.) 4:02
Total length:8:04

OST Part 4Edit

Released on December 7, 2016 (2016-12-07)
1."Somehow" (왠지 요즘)J.Mi (Lush)3:25
2."Somehow" (Inst.) 3:25
Total length:6:50

OST Part 5Edit

Released on December 8, 2016 (2016-12-08)
1."I'll Pick You Up" (데리러 갈게)Standing Egg3:45
2."I'll Pick You Up" (Inst.) 3:45
Total length:7:30

OST Part 6Edit

Released on December 14, 2016 (2016-12-14)
1."Permeate" (스르륵)Lee Hae-in3:37
2."Permeate" (Inst.)  
Total length:7:14

OST Part 7Edit

Released on November 15, 2016 (2016-11-15)
1."Again Again Again" (또또또)Lee Jin-ah2:24
2."Again Again Again" (Inst.) 2:24
Total length:4:48

OST Part 8Edit

Released on December 29, 2016 (2016-12-29)
1."Is It Love?" (사랑인걸까?)Ahn Hyun-jung3:30
2."Is It Love?" (Inst.) 3:30
Total length:7:50
Disc 2:
1."Weightlifting fairy kim bok joo" (Opening Title)Various Artists2:10
2."A New Beginning"Various Artists2:06
3."A Mischievous Triangle"Various Artists2:42
4."A Strange Pink Atmosphere"Various Artists2:11
5."'Bok Joo' Is Love"Various Artists2:34
6."Boyfriend vs Girlfriend"Various Artists2:07
7."Bok Joo's Family Chicken Restaurant"Various Artists1:57
8."Comfort"Various Artists2:18
9."Clear"Various Artists3:11
10."Can You Keep the Secret?"Various Artists1:59
11."Do You Like... MESSI?"Various Artists2:11
12."Forgotten Dream"Various Artists2:13
13."From gurl to woman"Various Artists3:22
14."Her Bucket List"Various Artists2:16
15."Keep Missing You"Various Artists1:40
16."Lost"Various Artists3:01
17."Lovely Day"Various Artists2:32
18."Mom's Postcard"Various Artists2:51
19."Naughty One-Sided Love"Various Artists1:47
20."On That Day, We...."Various Artists3:10
21."Obesity Clinic?"Various Artists1:56
22."See You Again, Kkung!"Various Artists2:06
23."Smiley"Various Artists2:08
24."Same Heart, Different Dream"Various Artists4:04
25."Sorry, I Can't Protect You"Various Artists1:50
26."Sly"Various Artists2:07
27."Road of Mind"Various Artists2:22
28."Toads and Coins"Various Artists2:46
29."Trauma"Various Artists2:08
30."Twenty Years Old"Various Artists2:04
31."That's How You Became an Adult"Various Artists2:39
32."The Beginning of Flutter"Various Artists1:35
33."What??"Various Artists1:55
34."Weightlifting Department of Haneol P. E College"Various Artists2:30


  • In the table below, the blue numbers represent the lowest ratings and the red numbers represent the highest ratings.
  • NR denotes that the drama did not rank in the top 20 daily programs on that date.
Ep. Broadcast date Average audience share
TNmS[19] AGB Nielsen[20]
Nationwide Seoul Nationwide Seoul
1 November 16, 2016 4.1% (NR) 4.1% (NR) 3.3% (NR) 3.6% (NR)
2 November 17, 2016 5.0% (NR) 5.2% (NR) 3.5% (NR)
3 November 23, 2016 4.8% (NR) 5.3% (NR) 4.4% (NR) 4.9% (NR)
4 November 24, 2016 4.9% (NR) 5.2% (NR) 4.6% (NR) 4.9% (NR)
5 November 30, 2016 4.8% (NR) 4.9% (NR) 4.4% (NR) 4.5% (NR)
6 December 1, 2016 4.5% (NR) 5.3% (NR) 4.6% (NR) 5.4% (NR)
7 December 7, 2016 4.4% (NR) 4.8% (NR) 5.7% (NR)
8 December 8, 2016 4.6% (NR) 4.6% (NR) 5.4% (NR) 5.5% (NR)
9 December 14, 2016 4.2% (NR) 4.4% (NR) 4.1% (NR) 4.4% (NR)
10 December 15, 2016 4.8% (NR) 5.3% (NR) 5.1% (NR) 5.6% (NR)
11 December 21, 2016 4.7% (NR) 5.2% (NR) 4.4% (NR) 4.6% (NR)
12 December 22, 2016 5.1% (NR) 5.3% (NR) 4.5% (NR) 4.7% (NR)
13 December 28, 2016 5.5% (NR) 6.3% (NR) 5.0% (NR) 5.8% (NR)
14 January 4, 2017 5.0% (NR) 5.9% (NR) 5.4% (NR) 6.3% (NR)
15 January 5, 2017 5.5% (NR) 6.4% (20th) 5.8% (NR)
16 January 11, 2017 5.4% (NR) 5.5% (NR) 5.2% (NR) 5.3% (NR)
Average 4.8% 5.3% 4.6% 5.0%

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Award Category Recipient Result
2016 35th MBC Drama Awards Excellence Award, Actress in a Miniseries[21] Lee Sung-kyung Won
Best New Actor[22] Nam Joo-hyuk Won
Best Couple Award Nam Joo-hyuk and Lee Sung-kyung Nominated


  1. ^ "Newcomer actors mature through 'Kim Bok-joo'". The Korea Times. 16 January 2017.
  2. ^ "New sports drama to revolve around youth and love". Yonhap News Agency. 2016-11-14.
  3. ^ [美친시청률] '푸른바다' 첫방부터 16.4%, 수목대전 압도적 1위. OSEN (in Korean). 2016-11-17. Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-joo premieres in last place with 3.3%
  4. ^ 이성경·남주혁 '역도 요정', 5.2% 종영. Newsis (in Korean). Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-joo ends in last place with 5.2%
  5. ^ ‘역도요정 김복주’ 시청률이 다는 아니올시다 [역도요정 으랏차차①]. The Chosun Ilbo (in Korean). 4 January 2017.
  6. ^ "[인터뷰①] Nam Joo Hyuk Talks Weight, Ratings, and Acting Skills For "Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo"". Sports Chosun (in Korean).
  7. ^ "5 things to know before watching 'Weightlifting Fairy'". ABS CBN News.
  8. ^ "이성경·MBC 양 측 "'역도요정 김복주', 출연제안만…확정 無" (공식입장)" (in Korean). Naver. 30 June 2016. Retrieved 2017-02-23.
  9. ^ "MBC "이성경, '역도요정 김복주' 출연 미정..여러 후보 중 한명"(공식입장) - 스타뉴스". Star News (in Korean). 2016-06-30. Retrieved 2016-10-16.
  10. ^ [단독] 이성경, 장미란 된다…'역도요정' 파격 캐스팅 : 스포츠조선. Sports Chosun (in Korean). Retrieved 2016-10-16.
  11. ^ [단독] 남주혁, '역도 요정 김복주' 주연 물망…'역시 대세남'. OSEN (in Korean). Retrieved 2016-10-16.
  12. ^ 엔플라잉 김재현 측 "‘역도요정 김복주’ 출연 확정". Newsen (in Korean). Retrieved 2016-10-16.
  13. ^ '역도요정 김복주' 신예 김우혁 캐스팅, 수영부 꽃미남 신입생役. TV Daily (in Korean). Retrieved 2016-10-16.
  14. ^ "[단독] 이종석 '역도요정 김복주' 특별출연, YG팸 지원사격" (in Korean). Naver. Retrieved 2016-10-16.
  15. ^ 이종석, 오늘(17일) '역도요정' 카메오 등판…분위기 바꾸나 (in Korean). Naver. Retrieved 2016-11-17.
  16. ^ '역도요정 김복주' 김슬기 카메오…"즐거웠다" (in Korean). Naver. Retrieved 2017-01-03.
  17. ^ "'역도요정김복주' 이성경·남주혁, 첫 대본리딩 "11월에 만나요" :: THE STAR". The Chosun Ilbo (in Korean). Archived from the original on 18 October 2016. Retrieved 16 October 2016.
  18. ^ 이성경·남주혁, ´역도요정…´으로 생애 첫 주인공 - 일간스포츠 (in Korean). JTBC. Retrieved 2017-02-23.
  19. ^ "TNMS Daily Ratings: this links to current day-select the date from drop down menu". TNMS Ratings (in Korean). Retrieved November 16, 2016.
  20. ^ "AGB Daily Ratings: this links to current day-select the date from drop down menu". AGB Nielsen Media Research (in Korean). Archived from the original on March 17, 2017. Retrieved November 16, 2016.
  21. ^ Lee Joo-hee (30 December 2016). "[2016 MBC 연기대상] '쇼핑왕' 서인국 & '역도' 이성경, 우수연기상 미니시리즈 부문 수상". Electronic Times (in Korean). Retrieved 2016-12-30.
  22. ^ Jang Ji-hoon (30 December 2016). "[2016 MBC 연기대상] 남주혁·류준열·남지현·조보아 신인상 영예". Focus News (in Korean). Archived from the original on 31 December 2016. Retrieved 2016-12-30.

External linksEdit