6 Taiwanese Drama Series Available on Netflix Now

6 Taiwanese Drama Series Available on Netflix Now
Photo Credit: Netflix 

What you need to know

Taiwan's TV dramas seem to gone through a relative dry spell. Here are some exceptions.

Most Taiwanese dramas are terrible nowadays, while more quality productions are coming out of China and South Korea. Taiwan’s government also doesn’t provide the kind of subsidies to the entertainment industry that South Korea does. We have perhaps one decent series per year and it barely catches any attention outside of Taiwan. As South Korean churned out fan-favorite series one after another, the early obsession with Japanese and Taiwanese TV dramas has also faded.

But there are still some good Taiwanese shows available on Netflix for us to savor. No, we’re not going to recommend the obvious Meteor Garden (the Japanese version was better anyway).

The Making of an Ordinary Woman (俗女養成記)

Photo Credit: Chinese Television System

Adapted from a series of personal essays, The Making of an Ordinary Woman might be relatable to women who want to break out of the traditional societal framework. The story follows a 39-year-old woman in Taipei who faces the reality of “Three Nos”: no car, no house, and no marriage. Her only talent might be blinking as the camera shutter goes off. Beyond the typical anxieties that women face, the 10-episode series touches on social issues like gender equality and Taiwan’s mother tongue movement.

A Boy Named Flora A (花甲男孩轉大人)

花甲男孩轉大人 劇照
Photo Credit: 植劇場

A non-typical story about coming-of-age, A Boy Named Flora A centers on a 28-year-old couch potato who reevaluates his life and family relations after his grandmother’s funeral. Some viewers have referred to this show as the boyish version of The Making of an Ordinary Woman, tackling a different set of problems but explores similar themes like family dynamics and what it means to be an “adult.”

A Touch of Green (一把青)

Photo Credit: A Touch of Green

Based on a short story in Pai Hsien-yung’s novel Taipei People, A Touch of Green is a Taiwanese period drama about a group of Republic of China Air Force pilots and their wives during the Chinese Civil War and after their retreat to Taiwan. While the story salutes the bravery of the pilots and emphasizes a sense of loss during wartime, the women stand out as the most admirable characters in supporting each other through everyday hardships. In addition to a poignant story, the pilot uniforms and period costumes in the series are an extra treat for the eye.

The Outsiders (鬥魚)

鬥魚電影版 安以軒藍正龍原班人馬回歸演出
Photo Credit: CNA
The movie remake of "The Outsiders"

An oldie but goodie, The Outsiders is a 2004 gangster romance series featuring some of the most popular actors in Taiwan. The “bad guy, good girl” plot in a high school setting might come off cheesy now, but the show was a sensation back in the day, with the theme song “Lydia” on repeat in Hong Kong and Taiwan for months on end.

The Victims’ Game (誰是被害者)

Photo Credit: Netflix

Netflix released another crime thriller series on the heels of the overwhelmingly negative reviews of Nowhere Man, which also featured Joseph Chang as a lead. The Victims’ Game follows a duo comprised of an investigative journalist (Tiffany Hsu) and a forensic investigator with Asperger’s syndrome (played by Chang) to decipher murder cases. Critics have labeled the show as a Taiwanese version of CSI, but the producers have made sure the show reflects how Taiwanese investigators work in real life. The script is somewhat awkward at times but it can be an entertaining thriller regardless.

Fated to Love You / You’re My Destiny (命中注定我愛你)

Screenshot from Netflix

This 2008 romance series broke the record for TV ratings at the time and was featured in the Wall Street Journal. It was adapted into Korean and Thai versions as well.

The series takes place across Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Shanghai as the protagonists develop in separate ways. In the biggest mess up possible, two strangers, Chen Xin Yi and Ji Cun Xi, end up sleeping with each other by mistake on a cruise ship and Chen soon finds out that she is pregnant. Although the two initially opt for an abortion, they decide to keep the child and get married under family pressure. The series is mostly a romantic comedy but the twists and turns leave viewers in tears at times.

READ NEXT: 6 Best Taiwanese Films to Watch on Netflix During Quarantine

TNL Editor: Nicholas Haggerty (@thenewslensintl)

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