ABSOLUTE BOYFRIEND: Hulu To Begin Streaming The Korean Live-Action Television Series In June

ABSOLUTE BOYFRIEND: Hulu To Begin Streaming The Korean Live-Action Television Series In June

Yuu Watase's 2003 manga series Absolute Boyfriend (Zettai Kareshi) has inspired a 2008 live-action Japanese television adaptation, a 2012 Taiwanese adaptation and a 2019 live-action Korean drama.

It's not uncommon for popular manga series to receive several different live-action adaptations in different Eastern countries.  For instance, Boys over Flowers has been adapted for television in Japan, Taiwan, China, India and South Korea. Itazura na Kiss aka Playful Kiss/Mischievous Kiss is another great example, having been adapted for television in Japan (in 1996 and 2013), Taiwan (2005 and 2016), South Kore and Thailand.  Yuu Watase's Absolute Boyfriend appears to be headed down a similar path as it's already received adaptations in Japan, Taiwan and South Korea.

It's the more recent South Korean version (2019) that will soon debut on Hulu according to the streaming platform's June programming schedule. The live-action adaptation will be available starting June 08.

In Watase's original manga, the series follows a Japanese teen girl named Riiko Izawa, who returns a lost cell phone to a strange salesman. It turns out that he works for a company called Kronos Heaven that claims that it can create your perfect lover. To thank her for returning his cell phone, he sends Riiko a free model (though she later learns it was only for a 72-hour free trial period and she now owes Kronos Heaven ¥100,000,000 yen/ ~$928,300 USD.)

In the Korean adaptation, the K-drama follows a thirty-year-old SFX artist named Um Da-da, who is suddenly dumped by her boyfriend after his acting career takes off. The jilted lover decides to order a robot to be her ideal boyfriend who turns out to be her true love.

Watase, who identifies as non-binary gender, released Absolute Boyfriend in 2003 in Shogakukan's Shōjo Comic manga magazine. The series ran until  2005 and consists of 6 volumes. VIZ Media holds the North American license for the series and has previously translated and released all 6 volumes. In addition to Absolute Boyfriend, Watase is best known for his Fushigi Yūgi manga series.

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