kdrama,  reviews

[Review] Semantic Error

If you are someone that watches kdramas or BL series, then I am sure that you have heard of Semantic Error. It has gotten so much buzz and so much hype recently that I decided to give it a try. I had no idea what to expect and I honestly don’t even remember what the synopsis was. But I watched it and I had a laughing good time. So, let’s get into it!


In this series we have two guys. Jae Young who is a senior and ready to graduate. He’s popular, good looking, confident, and now that he’s a senior, he feels he’s done all his hard work and just wants to coast freely until graduation, even if that means sticking his name on a group project that he did nothing to help with.

Then we have Sang Woo who is uptight, rude, and downright robotic in his thought processes and actions. He has no idea how to be social and doesn’t have any friends. He basically doesn’t understand human emotions at all, even his own. He actually admits this in later episodes.

Yes. Yes, Jae Young did draw on his face in class while he was sleeping lol

Sang Woo is a younger student who values what is right and doesn’t allow people to treat him like a doormat. When he gets left to complete a group project all by himself, he decides to give the presentation in his name only and tells the professor (and the whole class) that his groupmates (whom he has never seen or met) did nothing to contribute to the project and referred to them as ‘freeloaders’.

This results in the professor stripping the grade/credit away for the whole course for these freeloading students which hurts Jae Young because he is now no longer on track to graduate and has to stay another year. Because of this, Jae Young vows to find Sang Woo and make his life a living hell because of what he’s done.

Meanwhile, Sang Woo sees a digital design project that he likes and wants to hire the artist to help him work on another project for one of his courses. But little does he know that the artist in question is Jae Young, one of the “freeloaders” whose path to graduation he has just ruined!

Eventually these two finally meet and it’s a feud of hilarious proportions. But of course, this little rivalry turns into romance!

I’ll be honest, I didn’t like Sang Woo. I’m introverted and don’t like people, but I would never treat people the way he does. I could never be rude to people for no reason like he does. I don’t shy away from my emotions even if I don’t outwardly show them. I actually feel them very deeply and it can send me spiraling sometimes. But Sang Woo would often get on my nerves. Mostly because I just didn’t understand how he could be so mean straight away without even remotely trying to get to know people. He was super judgmental and didn’t even try to be at least cordial. Like, I don’t understand how a human can’t feel human emotions. I stay faaarrrr away from people like him in real life. When it comes to my own personality and types of people and energy I care to be around, he was one big neon sign of NOPE.

The only thing I agreed with him on is putting his name – and his name only – on the project since he did all the work. Would I have made a huge whoopdi-doo in front of the whole class demanding that freeloaders be held responsible? No. I would have just given the presentation with my name only and moved on. If the professor asked me where my group members names were and why they didn’t show up for the presentation, I would simply say that I worked alone and never met with the others. That’s it. The professor can decide what he or she wants to do with the others’ grades. It doesn’t concern me.

Jae Young was much more bearable although he’s also someone I probably wouldn’t hang around in real life either. He’s a bit too loud and outgoing for little introverted ol’ me. However, he was fun, and I liked the difference in personalities between him and Sang Woo. Even though they were complete opposites, they matched each other’s energy perfectly well which made for a very entertaining series. Their initial relationship was the epitome of fighting fire with fire. It was great lol.


I think the actors that played Sang Woo and Jae Young did a really good job. Both are idols turned actors. The guy that played Jae Young is a former member of a kpop group named KNK who I sort of liked. The group originally had five members but now only have three so, it’s kinda sad to know this group seems to be on the way to disbandment. But I guess we’ll see what happens with them.

The guy that played Sang Woo is also from a kpop group, one that I’ve never heard of. He comes from a group named Dongkiz which sounds ridiculously like “donkeys” in English, and I just can’t take the name seriously. Sorry lol.

I don’t know if either of these guys have acted in anything else however, watching this made me feel that they have plenty of experience in acting. They did such a good job embodying their characters. I didn’t feel like I was watching actors. I felt like I was watching actual people in real life situations, so it was a thumbs up from me!


I actually liked the storyline of this series. It was very slice of life but still had high stakes. The plot was easy to follow, and I could easily see something similar to this happening in real life. Maybe not with all the silly and over-the-top antics lol, but the idea of someone losing a grade for cheating, essentially, then being angry over it is very believable. The idea of someone sticking up for themselves and admitting to the professor that they did the project alone is believable to me.

Disliking each other initially then slowly liking them as you get to know them is very believable to me. In fact, I have experienced something similar, platonically, with my roommate in college. I didn’t like her at first and definitely didn’t talk to her. She was snarky and sarcastic and rolled her eyes whenever she spoke allll the time lol. Half the time I never knew if her sarcasm was actually sarcasm or if she was being serious. But as time went on and we got to know each other and spend more time together, we became good friends and she ended up being my roommate for three of my four years in college.

I enjoy storylines and plots like this in series. I’ve stated it before, but I’ll say it again, the hate-to-love trope is one of my favorites and I think it was done very well in Semantic Error. I liked it.


The locations were on a college campus, so it wasn’t anything special. Nothing was distracting though. It all just felt very natural.


I enjoyed the music in this and on one of the songs, I found myself jamming a little bit in my room. I could be mistaken, but I think the songs in this series were sung by the actors themselves. It’s not hard to believe since both are singers to begin with. The soundtrack to this was very enjoyable.


Overall, I enjoyed this drama. It definitely has rewatchability value. I think I just made that word up but whatever lol. It was fun and a great way to pass the time. The ending was the slightest bit corny with the series title showing up in the computer screen (if you watched it, you know what I’m talking about), but it was still fun and I recommend this drama. I will admit that I do think this series was a biiitt overhyped though. It was good and entertaining, but it was not the best BL of all time as so many people have been saying online. For me, it was just fun. That’s it.


I’m not sure what to rate this series honestly. I’ll just say give it a watch if you’re interested. If you go in with no expectations, you might be surprised. And if you go in with high expectations, it’s possible your expectations will be met depending on what you like. I recommend this series 🙂

Watch on VIKI! >> Semantic Error

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  • Chris

    I found Sang Woo to be relateable as an introvert myself. Since you are an intovert also, you are aware that there is a range to us, but we all need our quiet time to recharge from interactions with others. Based on our interactions, since it takes some of us introverts a lot of energy to engage in them, and thus we are influenced by our past interactions/experiences. In my case, when you find that those people you interact with tend to be two-faced or insincere, you start to feel like most people are like that, so you start to feel TIRED and jaded perhaps…..like interacting with others is not worth it since they are all pretending anyway, so why bother wasting the little energy you have available on such endeavors? I am not saying it is healthy, but I get the strong vibe that he had simillar experiences as an introvert as me and that made me feel more sad for him and empathetic since it is a lonely feeling to be trapped in your head space like that. It tells me he never really had many good early interactions with others, so he just stopped trying in an attempt to save himself the heartache. And it makes you even trapped more since others misinterpret you as aloof/cold/judgemental, when you really are not. Anyway, that is why I personally feel his character to be so real. I loved your review and so agree with a lot of your thoughts and find your interpretations and different outlooks enlightening and interesting. Thank you!

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