Note: The following article contains spoilers for episodes 1 to 4.
Lately, more and more viewers are being swept away by this fantasy-romance-sci fi drama that brings the comeback of writer Kim Eun Sook and the return of Kim Go Eun and Lee Min Ho to TV.
Kim Eun Sook is popular for her dramas like Goblin (which starred our lovely Go Eun), Descendants of the Sun and The Heirs (starring Lee Min Ho) to name a few. While this is Kim Go Eun’s first TV series project after Goblin (2016) and Lee Min Ho’s first project after his military discharge.
After 4 enthralling episodes, The King: Eternal Monarch, is bringing in more exciting revelations as the plot begins to unfold and dives deeper into the parallel universe realm.
There’s a reason why TKEM is trending across South Korea and garnering top spots in Netflix across Asia. We’re here to give our piece of advice and share 5 reasons why you should start watching TKEM today:
1. Mystical, magical and full of mystery
No doubt, Kim Eun Sook, delivers another well-written storyline. In the first 4 episodes, the show delivered its world building allowing viewers to get a glimpse of the two parallel worlds without giving away the rest of the plot. There’s always an air of mystery between the exchange of conversations, the little items that get highlighted from time to time, the emblems that get featured.
The biggest add-on that we get in this drama is aside from the usual fantasy and romance in previous Korean dramas, TKEM actually touches a lot on science with its concept of the parallel universe. A lot of fans are discussing theories on the relevance of math and science to the equation of the plot (talk about literal brain teasers!)
As much as it talks about all the aspects of science and math, the show adds an element of magic and mystic through the Manpasikjeok, the magical bamboo flute that allows them to travel between realms. All in all, TKEM blends in an all new genre of a Korean drama that viewers have never seen before.
2. The colorful characters and their (dual) roles
Kim Go Eun as Jung Tae Eul / Luna
Our Kim Go Eun portrays her main role as Jung Tae Eul, an ass-kicking lieutenant detective who is cool, sassy and cheerful. Jung Tae Eul shines with her simple yet unique aura of optimism and brevity through the hardships. And in signature Kim Go Eun style, Jung Tae Eul has a lot of funny and comedic moments.
In the parallel world, Kim Go Eun also plays Luna, which looks like a scarier version of Jung Tae Eul and whose character is not yet fully revealed.
Lee Min Ho as Lee Gon
Lee Min Ho portrays the ultra-charismatic King Lee Gon who is surprisingly an interesting and quirky character. Despite his status as the King of the Kingdom of Corea, he is actually socially active and into a lot of things like Dragonboat rowing for example (Who would’ve thought that a king can do that?! Only in the Kingdom of Corea). One thing about Lee Gon’s character that stands out is the way he puts his heart on his sleeve. After all, it only took him the first 4 episodes to confess his admiration for Jung Tae Eul.
Currently, Lee Gon is only present in 1 world.
The most surprising revelation of this drama is how Woo Do Hwan portrays a cold, straight-faced Yeong, who is the head of the Royal Guards in the Kingdom of Corea.
Meanwhile Eun Sup is a jolly and eccentric counterpart in the Republic of Korea. Nevertheless, both portrayals show an endearing friendship with Lee Gon.
TKEM casted a powerful ensemble who breathes life into interesting and intriguing characters.
Jung Eun Chae as Prime Minister Koo (Kingdom of Corea), Lee Jung Jin as Lee Lim (Kingdom of Corea) and Kim Kyung Nam as Shin Jae (Republic of Korea)
3. The humor and all the quirks!
Since TKEM touches on a number of genres, it also touches on a lot of emotions.
The humor is there and it’s the kind that makes you smirk and then later on laugh out loud. It has a lot of pop culture references too.
Starting with their quick-witted banters and funny scenes.
All the way to how Jung Tae Eul power-dresses for daytime detective work (Wow that OOTD is quite something!)
To her pop-culture references (Jung Tae Eul must be a fan of Leonardo Di Caprio)
Lee Gon and his obsession with Yangnyeom Korean Fried Chicken. Apparently, they don’t have the flavor in the Kingdom of Corea!
4. The Chemistry of the characters
The Chemistry of the characters are like written in the stars. For starters, Lee Gon and Jung Tae Eul will make you feel a lot of things.
From the beginning it’s clear that the characters of our lead are so contrasting that their chemistry is really off the charts. You get a direct Lee Gon who downright declares his intent to make Tae Eul his queen.
And you get a Tae Eul who is mostly unbelieving but you know she’s ready to try and take her chance.
Mix them both together and you get stunned by how well they look so good that sparks immediately fly.
The last few scenes of Episode 4 left a lot of fans swooning, melting and waiting for the next episodes!
Aside from Lee Gon and Jung Tae Eul, other fan-favorites are the friendships and filial relationships in the story.
The friendship between Lee Gon and Yeong is definitely something that would constitute a bromance. As their relationship is rooted from a painful past, their bond has grown into a deeper friendship beyond duty.
The love of head court Lady Noh and Lee Gon is so precious that you actually feel your heart cry out for Lee Gon’s tragic past. Head court lady Noh is the only family Lee Gon has and their interactions truly make you feel warm.
Jung Tae Eul and her comrades! Jung Tae Eul and her police squad make a fine team. Their team consists of colorful characters that make you wish you were a part of their inner circle just so you can listen in and join their missions. Not to mention, their teamwork is pretty much ~cool.
5. Stunning cinematography
TKEM has been getting a lot of praises for its writing, direction and beautiful cinematography. The colors mix so well and the mood of the set creates a unique atmosphere that makes up an elevated viewer experience.
There is definitely a lot to watch out as the story is just beginning to unfold. Don’t miss this epic drama and we hope you won’t wait for another 5 more episodes to get started. Watch the teaser for Episode 5 below!
Start your journey into these parallel worlds and stream The King: Eternal Monarch on Netflix. A new episode premieres every Friday and Saturday, 10:30pm Philippine Time.