Oppa: My younger sister is drinking soju!!
Spadoid: Bottoms up!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, the national alcohol is Soju (소주)! Soju is a rice-based alcohol with a taste similar to vodka. The alcohol content varies from 15% to 20%, and one bottle is typically cheaper than a bottle of beer! People typically say "one shot" (원샷) when drinking, meaning "bottoms up" or "chug"!
#002 - 가다
Hyon-Mi: Now I'm going to school!
Spadoid: I want to go to a bar!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, most people live in large apartment (아파트) buildings. Many times, these buildings are owned by very large companies such as Hyundai or Samsung!
#003 - 나중에 봐
Hyon-Mi: Bye, Spadoid!!
Spadoid: See you later!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, instead of pubs and bars, there are hops (호프) ! Hops are quite similar, but offer many food items as well as alcohol!
#004 - 몰라
Spadoid: Three beers please!
Woo-jin: What is that?!
Tae-sik: I don't know!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, the beer (맥주) market is dominated by three major brands; Hite, Cass & OB (Oriental Brewery). Although foreign brands such as Miller & Guinness are available, they tend to be much more expensive due to heavy taxation on import beers!
#005 - 교복
Hyon-Mi: Hello teacher!
Teacher: Where is your school uniform?
Hyon-Mi: Ow... I have a headache...
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, almost all high schools require their students to wear uniforms (교복). They are typically based on western-style uniforms, with shirts, ties and skirts!
#006 - 귀여워
Tae-sik: He's with my girlfriend!
Woo-jin: Mine too!
Kyung-Eun: Ah-ing!! Cute!
Eun-Kyung: Spadoid, I love you!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, much like in Japan, cuteness (귀여워) is a big part of popular culture. Companies or organizations will often have cute mascots representing them and many people strive to appear as cute as possible in their everyday lives.
#007 - 트림
Jung-Hoon: Hyon-Mi! Hyon-Mi!
Jung-Hoon: Are you ok?
Hyon-Mi: I'm hungry!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, hangovers are often dealt with using home remedies such as honey water!
#008 - 던지다
Jung-Hoon: Want to eat some ddeokbokki?
Hyon-Mi: Sounds good!
Woo-jin: Don't come again!!
Spadoid: I'm hungry too!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, ddeokbokki (떡볶이) is a very popular street food, consisting of sticky rice cakes(떡) in spicy sauce. There are many variations, and other ingredients are usually added such as fish cake(오뎅), eggs(계란) or dumplings(만두)!
#009 - 보고싶다
Kyung-Eun: Ah~ I miss Spadoid...
Eun-Kyung: Me too... but why did Woo-Jin have to kick him?
(Woo-Jin the idiot)
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, one never pours his or her own drink. Furthermore, when someone pours you a drink, it is customary to hold out your glass with both hands. The pourer will usually pour with both hands as well. Amongst friends, this custom is typically ignored.
#010 - 몬스터
Jung-Hoon: What knocked me?
Hyon-Mi: My monster!
Spadoid: My name is Spadoid!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, monsters are not commonly seen, however Korea's highest grossing film ever made was a monster movie by the name of The Host (괴물)!
#011 - 포장마차
Hyon-Mi: Ah-oooooo! Where are all the food stands?
Jung-Hoon: I don't know...
Spadoid: She REALLY likes Ddeokbokki!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, many tasty foods such as Ddeokbokki are conveniently served at food stands (포장마차) for a low low price!
#012 - 돈
Hyon-Mi: Ddeokbokki please!
Clerk: That'll be two thousand Won.
Hyon-Mi: I'm out of money...
Jung-Hooooooon! I need moneeeeeyy!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, the currency (돈) is called "won" (원) and is represented by the symbol "₩". ₩1000 is worth approximately $1 US or Canadian. There used to be a lower subdivision of the won called "jeon", however it is no longer in use.
#013 - 뽀뽀
Hyon-Mi: Ddeokbeokki please!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, even kisses on the cheek are rare amongst people unless they are dating. However, Hyon-Mi is a strange girl and often ignores Korean customs.
014 - 맵다
Hyon-Mi: Bon appetit!
Hyon-Mi: *NOM NOM*
Jung-Hoon: Is it good?
Hyon-Mi: It was spicy!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, modern cuisine is often quite spicy (맵다). Ddeokbokki in particular is quite renown for it's high levels of spiciness, although traditionally the dish was more mild.
015 - 라면
Oppa: Hyon-Mi, I'm home!
Oppa: Ugh... I'm hungry.
Oppa: Hyon-Mi! Supper's ready!
OPPA: WHERE IS MY SISTER?!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, instant ramen (라면) is very popular. Although countries like China, Japan and the USA consume more instant ramen than Korea, Koreans lead the world in per capita instant ramen consumption at 75 meals per year!
016 - 사랑
Hyon-Mi: Jung-Hoon! Wait!
Hyon-Mi: I... have something to tell you
Hyon-Mi: I'm really sorry...
Hyon-Mi: Also... even though your face is burnt off... I love you
Jung-Hoon: I love you too...
Spadoid: POWER OF LOVE!*
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, when english words are used within the Korean language, it is commonly known as "Konglish" (콩글리시). Although many, such as 라디오 (Radio) or 크리스마스 (Christmas) are essentially the same as their english counter-part, some, such as 핸드폰 (Cell phone) which is derived from "hand phone", come from english words that are not typically used within the same context. In some other cases, the words are shortened, such as 에어컨 (air conditioner) which is pronounced "e-eo-keon".
017 - 방
Jung-Hoon: I'm so happy now!
Hyon-Mi: Me too!
Jung-Hoon: What do we do now?
Hyon-Mi: Want to go to a DVD bang?
Hyon-Mi: See you later, Spadoid!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, there are businesses called "DVD bangs" (DVD 방), which literally translates as a "DVD room". "DVD bangs" provide customers with a wide selection of movies that can be watched in one of their many private rooms fully equipped with televisions and couches. For many young Korean couples, it can be difficult to get some privacy, therefore DVD bang's are popular couple hang out for "watching movies".
018 - 붙잡았다
Spadoid: I'm sad and alone...
Kyung-Eun (off panel): Spadoid!
Kyung-Eun: All right! I caught Spadoid!
Spadoid: Get me out of here!!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, there used to be a ban on many Japanese cultural imports such as music, books and TV shows due to the complicated history of the two countries. As a countermeasure, many Japanese products were distributed by Korean companies. For example, the Sega Mega Drive (Genesis) was sold as a Samsung product! Today however, the ban is lifted and both countries are sharing like never before!
019 - 퀘백
SPECIAL GUEST BOUM FROM THE WEBCOMIC BOUMERIES!
Oppa: OH! Pardon me.
Oppa: Are you American?
Boum: I'm from Québec!
CULTURAL NOTES: In Korea, it is common for people to mistake any western-looking person as American. This may be due to a large amount of American presence in Korea since the Korean War.
Québec is the second largest province of Canada. It is culturally quite distinct from the rest of Canada and its official language is French. Boum & I are both Québécois!
020 - 발견
Hyon-Mi: ... let's go here!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, Oppa's can be very over-protective of their Dongsaengs! Of course, similar behavior can be observed in many other cultures as well!
021 - 파이팅
Oppa: What are you doing?! You're too young to date!
Oppa: Alright! Let's just go home!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, people use the word "fighting" (파이팅 or 화이팅) to express encouragement or cheer. Many people think the expression was popularized by the popular TV show Full House (풀하우스), not to be confused with the American sitcom of the same name!
022 - 바보
Kyung-Eun: Ah~ My Spadoid...
Woo-Jin: Hi, Kyung-Eun!
Kyung-Eun: Hi, honey~
Woo-Jin: What's this?
Kyung-Eun: Don't touch!
Spadoid: I'm free!
Kyung-Eun: Oh no!
Kyung-Eun: You idiot!
Woo-Jin: Stay away from my girlfriend!!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, girls will often call their older boyfriends oppa (오빠)! This, of course, does not literally mean that their oppa is their brother, in contrast with Hyon-Mi's Oppa, who is indeed her older brother!
023 - 저녁
Oppa: Finally, we can have dinner!
Hyon-Mi: Where is Spadoid?!
Spadoid: I'm home!
Hyon-Mi: Let's eat!
CULTURAL NOTE: In Korea, chopsticks (젓가락) are generally made of stainless-steel, but were traditionally made of brass or silver. Of the four chopstick-using nations, Korea is the only one to favor metal ones!
024 - 긑
The next morning...
Oppa: My younger sister is drinking baekseju!!
Spadoid: Bottoms up!
CULTURAL NOTES: In Korea, another popular alcohol is baekseju (백세주) which is rice-based like soju, but also contains an asortment of herbs, notably ginseng. The name literally translates as "one-hundred-years wine" due to the legend that the herbs within it will help you live to 100 years old!
The sun in the last panel was drawn as a Sam Tae Guk (삼태극), which is similar to the yin and yang symbol of positive and negative energy. In this case, the blue color represents negative energy, while the red is positive. The yellow lobe represents humanity!