Dali and Cocky Prince (2021) Kdrama Review

Dali and Cocky Prince 2021 kdrama review starring Kim Min Jae and Park Gyu Young

Fans of Her Private Life, are you ready for another romantic foray into the world of art kdrama style? Dali and Cocky Prince DELIVERED! It’s not just about art though. The poster describes it best as Kim Da Li and Jin Moo Hak pose in front of a stunning art display. She is clad in her signature delicate chic fashion while he flaunts a unique suit pattern sporting a ladle and potato basket. Modern art meets gastronomy in this quirky tear-jerking thriller that will give you plenty of reasons to swoon. Sounds like the oddest mix, huh? Good thing it works!

Dali and Cocky Prince 2021 kdrama official poster

The Plot

As usual, AsianWiki is not to be trusted when it comes to a plot synopsis. Here’s what this kdrama is actually about. A prestigious family that owns an art gallery and has a single heir. A disowned jealous drug addict supported by his uncle. A cunning business mogul with his hand in every big pie. A self-made restaurateur who worships money. A passionate art researcher with a spine of steel. An insecure greedy mother-son duo. Put them all together and you get a somewhat predictable plot that is saved by the superior cast, great performances, awesome chemistry, and satisfying comedic timing. When Kim Da Li’s father suddenly dies, she rushes back to South Korea from the Netherlands and struggles to keep Cheong Seong Museum of Art open while her good-for-nothing cousin, Kim Si Hyung, stirs up trouble in cahoots with those who want the place shut down. Meanwhile, Jin Moo Hak, the money-loving creditor, attempts to take over operations to get his loan returned but secretly, he’s falling for Kim Da Li after their chance meeting in the Netherlands. Joo Won Tak, Kim Da Li’s childhood friend, is the cop on the tail of the corrupt politicians making shady land deals. He also happens to be the tenant of Jin Moo Hak, who lives in the same building. Kim Da Li isn’t eager for romance at first because the heir of the Segi Group, Jang Tae Jin, dumped her right before their wedding not long ago. As the story progresses, Kim Da Li begins to see who is truly and friend and who is an opportunist. We learn who is desperate to shut down the art gallery and how far they are willing to go for their ambitions.  

The Characters

Kim Da Li

Park Gyu Young as Kim Da Li (Dali and Cocky Prince 2021 review)

Every episode had me sighing over Kim Da Li’s elegant visual. Normally, I don’t like such a pale look but it worked perfectly for her doll-like princess image. The makeup was barely there but she was porcelain perfection and those baby hairs styled with a slicked back bob? It made me sad to see her hairstyle change near the end. She blended cool chic and feminine delicacy in a wonderful style that you will want to emulate. We soon realize that Kim Da Li, played by Park Gyu Young, is no pushover despite her fragile appearance. Seeing her stand tall against the worst of the worst was inspiring to say the least. Her bad luck in romance didn’t stop her from falling in love again and her compassion won hearts wherever she went. She’s a style icon with a heart of gold and balls of steel!  

Jin Moo Hak

Kim Min Jae as Jin Moo Hak (Dali and Cocky Prince 2021 review)

You think you’re cool but you’ll never be as cool as Dondon F& B’s Jin Moo Hak in his fun patterned suits lecturing elite art enthusiasts about pig poop. Never a boring moment with Jin Moo Hak and his band of loyal thugs, I mean cooks, executing his out-of-this-world plans to make more money. One would think that he’s a villain but really, he’s a soft boy who loves his toys. Not only will he eat your terrible food without complaint but he will whip up a delicious meal for you just because he loves you. Jin Moo Hak, played by Park Min Jae, is the type of person you want by your side in your worst times because this boy is not a quitter. More than that, he will push you to remain firm in the face of bitter opposition. He is strong, secure, annoying, petty, ridiculous, adorable, and a hopeless romantic.   

Supporting Cast

I hope they paid Kim Min Jae well for all the borderline cringe stuff they made him do. Those were some of the funniest scenes because his behaviour seemed so out of character for a money-hungry businessman. The supporting cast really sold them with their realistic reactions that were a hard relate. Speaking of which, Yeon Woo was pretty convincing as Ahn Chak Hee, the daughter of a corrupt politician. There wasn’t much of a love triangle thanks to her and the ending scenes with Joo Won Tak hit that sweet spot for those of us who shipped them. Although I had hoped for Na Gong Joo to get together with Joo Won Tak at some point, it was worth seeing Na Gong Joo’s character development and I preferred seeing her go through it independently. Then we have Jin Moo Hak’s parents, played by Ahn Kil Kang and Seo Jung Yeon, both great actors who never disappoint. Shoutout to Hwang Bo Ra, who plays Jin Moo Hak’s efficient secretary, Yeo Mi Ri. I cannot get enough of this gorgeous creature who does justice to every role she is given. Jin Ki Cheol, Jang Tae Jin, and Kim Si Hyung were memorable characters, each bringing substance to the story with their distinct personalities. Jang Tae Jin slips effortlessly from Seoul’s most eligible bachelor to scheming heartbreaker. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed Jin Ki Cheol’s sinister yet naïve character, who adds thrill with his moves. Lee Jae Woo stands out for his fantastic portrayal of Kim Si Hyung, who has more dimension than most kdrama heroes. Lastly, the team of Cheong Seong Museum of Art is a diverse bunch that somehow keeps everything afloat in disastrous times. Their internal chemistry as well as that with the main cast was always entertaining.  

I recommend Dali and Cocky Prince to anyone who is looking for the full package that has just enough light moments and heart-fluttering ones to keep you going when the plot gets too heavy to bear.

Rating: 4/5

Have you watched Dali and Cocky Prince? Let me know what you thought in the comments below.

Author: The Desi Dragoness

You know that person who sits by and listens while people bicker and snap at each other over anything and everything? That's me. During my observations, I realized that there are not many people who agree with my point of view. Sometimes, I wish I did think like most people then I wouldn't have such a hard time fitting in but as it is I stick out like a sore thumb.

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