Twenty-Five Twenty-One Review: Nam Joo Hyuk and Kim Tae Ri Starrer Brings 90s Nostalgia With a Delicate Nuance

TVN’s ‘Twenty-Five Twenty-One’ beautifully captures 90s nostalgia, presenting us a drama with delicate nuance. The drama is another rom-com starring Nam Joo-Hyuk and Kim Tae Ri.


Nam Joo-hyuk who last appeared in Start Up, as well as famous for his drama ‘Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok Joo‘ is the male protagonist. Alongside him stars Kim Tae Ri, who is known for the drama ‘Mr. Sunshine‘, and the movie ‘Space Sweepers‘, as the female protagonist. The cast also includes Choi Hyun-Wook, Bona and Lee Joo-Myung.

Written by Kwon Do-Eun and directed by Jung Ji-Hyun, the drama is a slice of life, including the elements of spirit, youth, and love. The drama started airing on tvN on February 12, 2022, and runs on Saturday and Sunday at 21:10 KST. The drama is available to stream on Netflix as well.

Twenty-Five Twenty-One Review: Nam Joo Hyuk and Kim Tae Ri starrer brings 90s nostalgia with a delicate nuance

Twenty-Five Twenty-One: Highlights

The drama revolves around Na Hee-Do (Kim Tae Ri) who is a member of her high school fencing team. Due to the South Korean financial crisis, her team gets disbanded. Through trials and difficulties, she lands herself as a member of the Sabre Fencing National Team. Likewise, Back Yi-Jin’s (Nam Joo-Hyuk) life takes a turn when his father’s business goes bankrupt.

From being a wealthy person to living with poverty, he faces it all. While studying, he does part-time jobs like delivering newspapers to mend his family’s financial needs. Later we see him as a sports reporter working for a broadcasting network.

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twenty five twenty one highlights

Twenty-Five Twenty-One: Nostalgic and Emotion-Driven

As the drama premiered, it garnered its fair share of ratings, topping the charts. The drama evokes emotion in the best way possible and leaves us feeling nostalgic over the good old days. This drama could be everything for ‘Reply 1988‘ fans.

As far, praises are being sung for the setting, cast, and music. Along with heartwarming chemistry, this drama presents us the hardships back in the days, and touches over some issues that happened in the past. The use of social media is minimal but present. Cassette stores and comic stores take us back to the 90s.

Twenty-Five Twenty-One: Nostalgic and emotion-driven

Traveling back to forth to the past and present, the narrative is told by the female lead’s diary that is being read by her daughter. This alone feels personal and very emotion-driven to tell. Although slow-paced, this traverses well from timelines, giving smoother transitions and better understanding. The first two episodes bring us thought-provoking backstories and are led by hurt/comfort between the characters. Past the story, the buildup is efficient and exciting.

On a fair note, Twenty-Five Twenty-One is not something you should miss out on!

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