Love for Love's Sake is a Korean fantasy BL series where the main character unknowingly enters a virtual game. The simulation takes him to the past, where he relives his high school life. His goal is to bring a student out of an emotional slump. The protagonist receives special abilities, allowing him to see affection levels or accept side quests for rewards. As their relationship improves, the lonely teen becomes optimistic and grows fond of his new friend.
With an incredibly creative premise, Love for Love's Sake approaches romance like playing a video game. I enjoy the unique scenarios from the quirky storylines. Both protagonists have lovable personalities and experience meaningful development. Their relationship scenes contain charming interactions, made better by a playful sense of humour. While the last few episodes feel rushed, this ambitious series still leaves a positive impression.
Love for Love's Sake Summary
연애 지상주의 구역
South Korea (2024)
Love for Love's Sake is a mature & interesting BL drama.
Myungha is a 29-year-old who meets with his friend at a bar. He drinks heavily to drown out the dissatisfaction with his life. His companion announces that his romance novel will be adapted into a video game. The story features a male and female protagonist who fell in love after overcoming difficulties. However, Myungha sympathizes with the pitiful supporting character, who remains lonely at the end. Myungha believes Yeowoon deserves a chance at love and happiness.
Myungha wakes up from his drunken daze. He vaguely remembers his friend telling him to change Yeowoon's fate. As Myungha examines his surroundings, he's shocked to find himself in a high school classroom. He was transported to the past and became his nineteen-year-old self. In addition, he sees a virtual message stating the game has started. His goal is to complete the missions in the allotted time. After much confusion, Myungha realizes he's in a simulation of his friend's video game.
Myungha accepts his first mission, instructing him to find Yeowoon. According to the story, Yeowoon is an emotionally vulnerable 18-year-old student-athlete. His grandma just passed away. Likewise, his leg pain hinders him from competing in track-and-field competitions. Since he relies on a sports scholarship for his studies, this setback is demoralizing. Yeowoon is also bullied at school, adding to his despair. Myungha locates Yeowoon on a rooftop, seemingly contemplating suicidal thoughts. Myungha rescues the at-risk teen, thus completing his mission.
A confused Yeowoon doesn't know why Myungha has saved him. Myungha makes up a story, claiming he used to be acquainted with Yeonwoon's grandmother. Before her death, she had asked him to look after her grandson. Myungha suggests they get ice cream together. Afterwards, he accompanies Yeowoon throughout the night, not letting the teen out of sight. Myungha discovers he can see Yeowoon's affection level. The negative digit means Yeowoon dislikes him. However, the number improves after Myungha treats his companion kindly.
Myungha receives a new mission. He has 365 days to make Yeowoon like him. If he fails the task, the consequences are deadly. Myungha tries to involve himself in Yeowoon's life, but the teen is guarded and doesn't open up easily. Yeowoon has lost hope after his grandmother's death. He doesn't want to participate in activities or socialize with anyone. Myungha aims to raise his affection level with Yeowoon and bring his companion out of the emotional slump. Myungha relies on his social circle, Kyunghun, Sia, and Sangwon, to help Yeowoon discover happiness again.
Love for Love's Sake Trailer
Love For Love's Sake Cast
Lee Tae Vin (이세웅)
Myungha is a 29-year-old who unknowingly enters a video game simulation. He transports to the past and becomes his 19-year-old self. Myungha must complete missions to survive. His primary mission is to help Yeowoon feel happy again. Like a gaming character, Myungha gains the ability to see virtual messages, accept quests, and see stats. Myungha lives with his grandmother and has a close relationship with her.
Cha Joo Wan (차주완)
Yeowoon is an 18-year-old high school student. He is a famous track-and-field star who relies on his sports scholarship. However, Yeowoon has suffered many setbacks recently. His leg pain hinders him in competitions. Also, his grandmother's death makes him feel hopeless. He almost considers suicide until Myungha saves him. Yeowoon is quiet and has no friends at school. The bullies like to pick on him for being poor.
Joo Boo Jin (주부진)
Oh Min Su (오민수)
Cha Woong Ki (차웅기)
Go Geon Han (고건한)
Love for Love's Sake Review
Drama Review Score: 8.8
From start to finish, Love for Love's Sake takes viewers on an extraordinary adventure. The series resembles a real-life video game, so the protagonist navigates decision trees, mission objectives, and affinity systems. The quirky storylines explore many unique scenarios, stimulating my imagination with all the clever ideas. Also, I admire its ambition. Here's a bold drama that takes creative risks and doesn't follow a predictable formula. Love for Love's Sake presents a fresh, exciting novelty to the BL genre.
Thrust into an unknown world, Myungha is a scrappy protagonist who must think quickly on his feet. I enjoy seeing him be resourceful and adapt to his surroundings. He overcomes each challenge with a roguish charm, making me grin due to his cheeky antics. Myungha is also surrounded by high school drama, from homophobic bullies to love triangles. Yet, he approaches these campus storylines with an adult sensibility. Myungha isn't your typical teenage lead who behaves thoughtlessly or immaturely. I appreciate his wisdom and compassion, like an experienced mentor figure.
Yeowoon's journey forms the emotional crux of Love for Love's Sake. My heart aches for this sympathetic lead, who begins the series in a bottomless pit of despair. Each episode focuses on his healing while he regains hope. As Yeowoon experiences profound growth, his successful character development arc achieves poignant climaxes. The actor (Cha Joo Wan) portrays his role authentically. Early on, he conveys Yeowoon's melancholy through sullen gazes and vulnerable expressions. Later, he transforms himself by showing a surprisingly adorable side.
In addition to the meaningful storylines, Love for Love's Sake creates a charming relationship between the leads. Myungha and Yeowoon's emotional bond blossoms into a romantic attraction. The couple shares entertaining interactions as they flirt, made better by the story's playful sense of humour. Although Yeowoon may appear stoic, he opens up and becomes a hilarious love interest. I adore him when he acts smitten! During production, the series faced allegations that it might change into a bromance. Rest assured, several scenes include physical affection.
Initially, Love for Love's Sake goes on a streak of enjoyable episodes. From the angsty drama to the lighthearted humour, the series balances its mood without sacrificing emotional depth. There's an ideal equilibrium of romance, comedy, and sentimentality. It maintains an engaging momentum until the second half. Unfortunately, the plots feel rushed toward the end. Around Episode 6, the narrative starts buckling under the weight of its overambitious plot. Too many random events occur without enough development. I was turned off by all the sudden chaos in the story.
Although the video game details are creative, they become heavy-handed plot devices. Myungha's side quests and random loot steer the narrative in arbitrary directions. The last few episodes are preoccupied with error messages, deadlines, and forced dilemmas, which all feel like contrived melodrama. As my enthusiasm dwindles, the emotional ending doesn't resonate powerfully. Despite the disappointing last stretch, Love for Love's Sake leaves a positive impression. I appreciate the series for telling an imaginative story with thoughtful themes & endearing protagonists.
Love for Love's Sake amazes me with a creative premise. The love story resembles a video game as it explores many quirky scenarios. The leads are also endearing and go on meaningful journeys.
Yeonwoo and Myungha's emotional bond transforms into a charming romantic attraction. The couple shares entertaining interactions as they flirt. Yeowoon is a particularly hilarious love interest.
Both leads appear natural in their roles. Myungha's actor (Lee Tae Vin) conveys a roguish charm in his character. His costar (Cha Joo Wan) portrays melancholy through vulnerable expressions.
Love for Love's Sake has a happy ending as the leads reunite. The finale includes emotional revelations about Myungha's past. However, the storylines in the last few episodes feel too rushed.
The series delivers pretty aesthetics from a polished production team. The cinematographer often films at creative angles and composes the scenes thoughtfully to keep the visuals interesting.
Love for Love's Sake is a creative BL series that combines romance with a quirky video game setting. The endearing leads develop a charming relationship and deliver authentic performances.
Love for Love's Sake Episodes
Love for Love's Sake has a total of 8 episodes. Each episode is around 30 to 40 minutes long. The last episode is around 30 minutes long. It is a long BL drama, and you can finish the entire series in under 5 hours. Love for Love's Sake started on January 24, 2024 and ended on February 1, 2024.
Love for Love's Sake is an adaptation. The original story, Love Supremacy Zone (연애 지상주의 구역) is created by Hwacha (화차).
Episode 1 Review
My first impression is positive! I like the premise of combining a love story with a video game simulation. This creative concept has a lot of novelty, unlike anything I've seen in the BL genre. The missions, the affinity system, and the love supremacy zone are all unique details. My favourite aspect is seeing Yeowoon's affection level. Attaching a quantitative number to a love interest is quirky. It reminds me of playing The Sims, where I spam positive interactions to raise the characters' relationship bars lol.
"A hedgehog warning zone." Hehe, I like this analogy! I look forward to seeing how Myungha wins over Yeowoon and raises his fondness level. So far, Yeowoon acts quite aloof. He doesn't seem like the easiest guy to get along with. Also, Yeowoon looks sullen and carries an air of misery. I can feel the unhappiness radiating from him in every scene. Myungha must work hard to befriend him, but it'll feel rewarding when that negative number finally turns into a positive. "Will something good happen if I get him to like me?" The buff and debuff system is clever, offering many storytelling possibilities.
Besides the gamification aspects, the narrative has other creative twists. It experiments with time travel. As Myungha revisits the past, he brings an adult mindset to a high school setting. He approaches the story differently than your typical teen protagonist. It also explores Myungha's history. The scenes with the grandma add an emotional depth. Plus, the series raises the stakes by adding life-or-death urgency to the plot. "If you fail the mission, prepare to die!" OMG, this version of game over means fatality!
Episode 2 Review
I laughed when Yeowoon made fun of Myungha for using the ^^ emoticon. That's so old school of you, grandpa! This scene highlights how cultural norms can evolve a decade from now. The ~cool lingo~ you used in your youth would be considered outdated by teens today. Also, it indirectly alludes to the 11-year age gap between the leads. Mentally, Myungha is 29. But physically, he's 19. My mind tries not to overthink if his romance with 18-year-old Yeowoon is sketchy.
My favourite moment is seeing Yeowoon's affection level for himself. His negative value of -100 reflects immense self-loathing. Wow, this storytelling device is brilliant! I only expected the relationship system to be used on other characters. Its function is supposed to track the progress of Yeowoon and Myungha's romance. Yet, the series has gone deeper by revealing Yeowoon's introspection. The small yet significant detail illustrates the depth of his unhappiness. More than anyone else in the world, Yeowoon hates himself the most. Ohhh, that's devastating!
I like Myungha a lot! He's bold, scrappy, and funny. His one-liners are cheeky. "Do I need a license to be your friend?" Also, he's kind toward others and stands up against the school bullies. Some may argue that Myungha only treats Yeowoon nicely due to his missions. Yet, Myungha befriends Kyunghun without an ulterior motive. Like Yeowoon, Kyunghun is a loner with low self-worth. Myungha still warms to him anyway. He tells Kyunghun not to belittle himself. Based on his altruistic actions with the supporting character, we see Myungha is a decent guy.
Episode 3 Review
Aww, poor Yeowoon. Whenever he opens up emotionally, I feel bad for him. Yeowoon talks about his running. Initially, he started this sport as an outlet to escape his frustrations. Yet, the fifteen-year-old him soon realized he was running around in circles. This analogy resonates powerfully and captures his helplessness. I like how Myungha comforts him with a hug, which is what Yeowoon needs at that moment. Myungha may have a secret mission, but his kindness toward Yeowoon always seems genuine.
Sangwon intrigues me. In the first episode, Myungha sympathizes with the lonely supporting character, who gets neglected at the end of the story. Sangwon is in the same predicament. Many viewers may only focus on the two leads without paying attention to Sangwon's problems. He seems like a pesky rival. Beneath his swagger, he also faces family issues and deals with bullies. Unlike Yeowoon, Sangwon doesn't have a love interest to rescue him. As Myungha predicted, every story has a tragic side character. In this case, Sangwon may deserve our pity and understanding.
OMG NO. Yeowoon's fondness level dropped so dramatically after one gift! Yeowoon dislikes the new shoes because he doesn't want Myungha's pity. He's too stubborn to accept charity, viewing it as someone looking down on him. In reality, Myungha only wants to do something kind to cheer up the teen. His good intentions have been misunderstood. My heart sank seeing the number fall into the negatives again. After Myung worked hard to improve their relationship, this moment felt like the couple had lost all their progress. I'm so upset! Please reconcile! 😞
Episode 4 Review
"Why are you so nice to me!?" This episode includes a breakthrough for Yeowoon's character. Before, he was skeptical of Myungha's intentions. Due to his misfortune and mistreatment, Yeowoon didn't feel used to others treating him nicely. Myungha softens his companion's heart, showing the lonely teen he doesn't have to face his struggles alone. His kind gestures move Yeowoon, who finally accepts the compassion without doubting it. Yeowoon allows himself to open up and rely on Myungha's emotional support.
Hehe, Yeowoon has a surprisingly adorable side! His character has moped around since the beginning. We've never seen him without a sullen look. Suddenly, his demeanour has transformed. Yeowoon 2.0 is sweet, soft, and smiley. While I like seeing him happy, I'm also not used to this change. It cracks me up when Yeowoon acts sweetly toward Myungha, only to turn stone-faced at Sangwon. My favourite part is Yeowoon's pout! As he sticks out his lower lip cutely, I can't believe this is the same guy from before. Who knew he could make this kind of endearing expression?
"I imagine a huge crocodile chasing me." LMAO. What answer is this!? I like his response about having a loved one wait for him at the finish line. Awww! Besides being funny and adorable, I feel inspired by Yeowoon's transformation. It warms my heart to see this depressed teenager shake out of his slump. Yeowoon has made an effort to change himself. He's more honest and expressive, no longer hiding his feelings. "I get why you like the sea. I think I like it too." This line shows his newfound optimism. Thanks to Myungha, Yeowoon views the world more positively.
Episode 5 Review
My favourite moment is when the leads are outside the park. Myungha looks at his companion and calls him cute. This compliment prompts Yeowoon's face to light up joyfully. Ahhh, he's so adorable~ 😚 The actor (Cha Joo Wan) is so good at transforming his expressions. He can appear sulky and convey an air of melancholy. Yet, he can smile genuinely and radiate happiness. I also like his performance during the love confession, showing vulnerability and emotional restraint.
"He looks after you like a little brother… or a nephew." I giggle over comparing Myungha & Yeowoon's relationship to uncle and nephew. At least being called a little brother is a term of endearment, but being labelled as your love interest's nephew seems hilariously awkward. Besides the age difference, Myungha resists entering a romance since they come from different timelines. He doesn't belong to this world. Despite his self-doubt, Myungha becomes enlightened. A short-lived love doesn't mean he should give up. Instead, he learns to cherish their time together.
Love for Love's Sake received backlash before its release due to allegations that the series would be changed into a bromance. Fans protested until the decision was reversed. I'm proud the community didn't give a lukewarm response and allowed the straightwashing to happen. In retrospect, I wonder if the scandal was a marketing stunt. Myhungha & Yeowoon's feelings are so integral to the narrative that I can't envision the story without their romance. Thankfully, the couple's first kiss removes any ambiguity about the relationship. We want BL content, not bromances!
Episode 6 Review
Myungha and Yeowoon's kiss lack passion. Myungha also teases his partner's technique. However, the clumsiness is endearing, as expected from a teenager's first intimate encounter. I like Yeowoon's earnestness about practicing and improving. Hehe, that's cute of him! Afterwards, Yeowoon finds any chance to sneak a little peck here and a quick smooch there. They even kiss in broad daylight in a traffic intersection, which is so bold. Yeowoon cracks me up since he seems obsessed with kissing his boyfriend everywhere!
Just when I thought Yeowoon couldn't be more adorable, he outdoes himself on the movie date. The sunflower is such a funny present. I love how he gets one massive flower and ties a pink ribbon to it, adding to the comedic visual. While the gift may seem quirky, Yeowoon's explanation is cute. It represents his conviction and determination to date Myungha. Awww~ Yeowoon's earnestness is one of his most endearing character traits. Despite his clumsy romantic attempts, I enjoy seeing this lovestruck teenager try hard to please his boyfriend.
Myungha's missions arise from his altruism. He constantly thinks of new ways to motivate Yeowoon, like helping him make new friends or gain social media followers. His goal is to encourage Yeowoon to be sociable and connect with others. His brain presents these ideas as video game quests, but they are simply acts of thoughtfulness. The rewards for completing the missions are metaphorical. He unlocks information like memories or relationship levels. The more Myungha supports Yeowoon, the more valuable insights he gains into his companion.
Episode 7 Review
Compared to the comfortable pacing at the start, the second half of Love for Love's Sake seems rushed. I haven't read the source material, but I sense the feeling of urgency from the series. It's trying to squeeze too many storylines into three half-hour episodes. There isn't enough time to explore the ideas behind every newly introduced plot. The social media mission, the stalker drama, the grandma's hospitalization, and other events are packed into the narrative, receiving little development for each.
In addition to feeling rushed, these last three episodes are chaotic. Too many random events occur under contrived circumstances. Suddenly, Myungha must face a moral dilemma! Now, he receives a pen to change destiny! Oh wait, he's going to disappear forever! The series explains the sudden twists as ~system errors~, but this excuse doesn't seem satisfying. As the story jumps erratically from plot to plot, the viewers don't have enough time to process everything. The nuances of Myungha's emotional farewell get lost due to a rapidly moving narrative.
This episode features a lot of the pretty visuals. I love all the scenes of the leads hanging out on the rooftop, especially at night. The cityscape view behind them creates a beautiful ambiance. I also like the shots that focus on the actors' expressions. Myungha and Yeowoon face directly at the camera, almost confronting the viewers with their emotions. There's a particularly stunning image of Yeowoon where he looks very handsome! In addition, the series experiments with creative cinematography. The artistic flair enriches the epicness of the narrative.
The Love for Love's Sake ending has a plot twist, revealing that Myungha is dead. He had committed suicide in his old life. This video game simulation is like an afterlife, purgatory, or a second chance to rediscover his happiness. The actual definition is open to your interpretation. Although Myungha had been helping Yeowoon out of his emotional slump, he goes on a similar journey for himself. Myungha wants a reason to keep living. He finds solace in this alternative world with Yeowoon's companionship.
The plot twist is decent. I like how the story explains why the video game universe manifested. I also appreciate the meaningful themes about regaining hope and happiness. Love for Love's Sake has a profound story. However, I don't feel sentimental about the ending. IMO, the series lost momentum in the last few episodes. From the rushed storylines to the chaotic events, my enthusiasm has dwindled. The journey leading up to the finale doesn't satisfy me as much as it could have. As a result, my emotional response is subdued.
My favourite part of the ending is the beach scene. Typically, I don't like it when the protagonists run dramatically in the finale. That seems so cliche. However, it works for this series since running is one of the narrative themes. I recall Yeowoon's quote about waiting for someone at the finish line. Having a loved one motivates him to keep going forward, so this mantra makes the characters' reunion more poignant. In addition, the kissing scene is beautifully filmed. As the couple embrace, hold hands, and lock lips, I'm delighted they can be happy together.
Love for Love's Sake Information
Kim Kyun Ah (김균아) is a Korean director who worked on the 2024 BL drama Love for Love's Sake.