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Three broadcasting systems and their drama series: Who was the most successful?

Seoul, Korea – Unexpected events occurred for 2010’s drama series. Those that captured the attention of many even before they aired received an embarrassingly low audience rating, and some unexpectedly achieved a high audience rating when other blockbusters were airing at the same time.

KBS’s King of Baking, Kim Takgu gets the highest audience rating, MBC gets the lowest.

Also, there was one drama series that did not meet the expectations of its producers regarding the audience ratings but instead built a group of avid followers who commented with much enthusiasm about the series online.

As usual, the three broadcasting systems, KBS, MBC, and SBS showed impressive casts, invested colossal amounts of money into their drama series, and competed intensely with each other.


KBS spent a happy year with its drama series King of Baking, Kim Takgu, which recorded the highest audience rating. With Yoon Si Yoon, a new actor, as its protagonist, the drama series achieved the highest audience rating of 49.3 percent (according to AGB Nielson).

Even though the competing actors were So Ji-sub and Kim Ha-neul in the drama series Road Number One and Kim Nam-gil and Han Ga In in Bad Guy, Yoon Si Yoon, playing his first leading role in King of Baking, Kim Takgu, put up an astonishing fight.

In addition, Chuno, which aired early this year achieved an average audience rating of 30.3 percent and featured high-quality acting and fancy action scenes, was loved by many viewers.

Chuno also had much good fortune with awards. Besides receiving the Best Drama Award at the 2010 Korea Drama Festival, Chuno received the highest award for Best Mini-Series,” the Hallyu Drama Daesang, the Award for Best Director, and the Hallyu Star Male Actor Award at the Seoul International Drama Awards 2010.

Even though it received a low average audience rating of 10 percent, there is another series that achieved high popularity and recorded 400,000 comments on its official website and other Internet forums.

In the drama series Sungkyunkwan Scandal, “Flower Bachelor” Lee Sun Joon (played by Park Yoo Chun), “Dae mul” Kim Yoon Hee (Park Min Young), “Geol oh” Moon Jae Shin (Yoo Ah In), and “Yeo rim” Goo Yong Ha (Song Jung Ki) gained popularity as the “Tickling Gang of Four.” Park Yoo Chun, who extinguished the voices of concern regarding an inexperienced singing-idol- turned-actor, expressed well the candid nature of Lee Sun Joon and was loved by many viewers as he improved his acting.

Yoo Ah In, the main character of the “Love for Goel” craze, immediately extinguished all controversy about his casting and won women’s hearts. Song Jung Ki also gained popularity as a character with unique charms.


MBC spent its worst year in regard to drama because the drama series Road Number One, which cost 13 million won to produce and boasted a top-star cast, was simply ignored by viewers.

This masterpiece, which boasted a renowned cast of So Ji-sub, Kim Ha-neul, and Yoo Gye-sang and featured a large-scale war story, received an audience rating of only 6.2 percent.

Also, Playful Kiss which aimed to be the second Boys Over Flowers, received a low audience rating of 4.9 percent.

In particular, Playful Kiss received a lot of criticism for the poor acting skills of its main characters and for the unrealistic development of the story.

Dong-yi was the only series that received a satisfactory audience rating of 23.0 percent.


SBS achieved a 21.9-percent audience rating for its 60-episode drama series Giant. In particular, Giant ended happily with an audience rating of 38.2 percent for its last episode.

With a story revolving around the growth and love of three siblings during the development of Seoul during the 70s, Giant maintained its popularity through brilliant performances by its actors and a solid story.

Also Daemul, which starred Ko Hyeon-jeong and Kwon Sang Woo, faced many problems when its screenplay writer was replaced, but the series was still able to achieve an average audience rating of 25.7 percent and 28.3 percent on its last episode.

SBS showed strength in its weekend drama series. Loving You a Thousand Times and Next Door Enemy both received audience ratings higher than 20 percent, and You, Smile and Life Is Beautiful both received at least 15 percent.

Secret Garden, which is currently airing, with Hyun Bin and Ha Ji-won as lead actors, is eliciting an enthusiastic response with its unique storyline that consists of a set-up where the protagonists switch bodies and a love story between a second-generation jaebol and a stuntwoman.

Hyun Bin is captivating the hearts of many female viewers, and Secret Garden is on its march towards popularity with an audience rating of 30 percent.

By Yoon Bora (bora@jtn.co.kr)

Source: JTN (Original article in Korean)
Photo from JTN DB
Translated by Sung Kyu Chang / Korea.com