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The 2015 computer-animated movie, Inside Out was a hit amongst Disney fans as it depicted a fresh new concept about feelings. Inside the mind of a young girl, fans meet animated characters, each representing and controlling a different emotion. The upcoming 2021 Korean Drama Yumi’s Cells follows a similar concept. Its K-drama storyline is adapted from a webtoon of the same name by Donggeon Lee from 2018. A female office worker’s story shifts between her real life and animated characters called ‘cells’ that control her emotions. She hopes to reignite her dormant ‘love’ cell.

Kim Go-Eun and Ahn Bo-Hyun 'Yumi's Cells' sitting on the couch with animated characters
Actors Kim Go-Eun and Ahn Bo-Hyun for ‘Yumi’s Cells’ | via tvN

‘Inside Out’ gives emotions physical personalities

Pete Docter directed Inside Out and created the concept after noticing his daughter’s changes in personality as she grew up. The core emotions, Joy, Sadness, Fear, Disgust, and Anger, are represented as animated characters in the movie. Inside the mind of a young girl named Riley, these characters are responsible for storing her memories and making sure Riley stays happy.

When Riley’s family moves to a new state for her father’s job, all of Riley’s happy memories turn sad. Joy and Sadness try to rectify the problem. In the chaos, Joy and Sadness are knocked out of headquarters along with Riley’s core memories. Anger, Fear, and Disgust are in charge, only worsening the situation and causes the personality islands to crumble. The characters must hurry to rectify the problem before it is too late.

‘Yumi’s Cells’ tells the story of a women reigniting her ‘love’ cell

Actor Kim Go-Eun stars as the title character Yu-Mi in the K-drama. Yu-Mi is a simple office worker who experienced a bad breakup resulting in her ‘love’ cell going dormant. Yumi’s Cells is unique as it is from the point of view of cute animated characters that inhabit Yu-Mi’s mind. The animated characters control every emotion and action that Yu-Mi has.

The K-drama is a romance as Yu-Mi needs help expressing her feelings and experiencing love again when she meets a warm-hearted game developer. “The story of Yumi’s love life and growth will deliver both warm laughter and relatability as she overcomes the dramatic moments of everyday life in a fun way,” says director Lee Yeong-Seob, according to Soompi. Actor Ahn Bo-Hyun will star as Gu-Woong, Yu-Mi’s love interest.

The trailer and posters reveal how the animated characters play their role in Yumi’s Cells. Yu-Mi’s cells each have their personalities as one cell leans seductively against her shoulder while her rational cell blushes from a kiss. The trailer only added to the fun as Yu-Mi and Gu-Woong have a late-night cup of coffee as their cells react to what is happening between blushing, nervousness, and happiness.

Actor Kim Go-Eun has starred in fan-favorite K-dramas


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K-drama fans have high anticipations for Yumi’s Cells as it stars Kim Go-Eun in the lead. The actor made a name for herself starring in three highly rated and talked about dramas. She gained notoriety from Cheese in the Trap in 2016. The storyline and drama helped solidify the ‘second-lead syndrome’ trope often seen in the romance genre. Kim would later star in one of the most popular dramas, Guardian: The Lonely and Great God. In 2020, she starred in The King: Eternal Monarch, one of Netflix’s most-streamed K-dramas.

Actor Ahn Bo-Hyun co-stars with Kim in Yumi’s Cells. Fans will recognize the actor as Im Kwang-Nam in Descendants of the Sun from 2016. He generated buzz appearing as the antagonist Jang Geun-Won in the hit Netflix series Itaewon Class alongside actor Park Seo-Joon.