I really wanted to love MBC‘s big tentpole prime time drama of 2015 that is Splendid Politics (Hwajung), but alas that did no happen. It has a fantastic cast and all the promotional push to bring back the glory of the great long sageuk dramas of yore but ended up boring me to bits most of the time, with not enough interesting interludes to string me through the tedium. The ratings hover around the 10% mark which makes this drama not a failure but definitely a disappointment.
Before Splendid Politics the network aired fusion sageuk Shine or Go Crazy in that Mon-Tues time slot but the next drama will be taking a breather from historical fate and politicking to modern female conflict. MBC is lining up Their Castle to follow Splendid Politics, and looks to be borrowing a page from the decently rated KBS women-centric drama Unkind Women since the drama has a similar general synopsis of women bickering and behaving badly. MBC also clearly has eyes on how much better weekend dramas are doing in ratings so the screenwriter is a MBC weekend makjang veteran paired with a MBC PD with prime time cred.
The screenwriter for Their Castle wrote the frustrating and addicting May Queen as well as similar styled Golden Rainbow, neither of which can be considering quality fare but does have an allure for a slice of the viewing audience. Directing will be PD Kim Sung Hyub who helmed Mama, Royal Family, 7th Grade Civil Servant, Dong Yi, and Cinderella Man. The drama will be casting soon for an October premiere date.
Seems the era of the big, national drama Sageuk is dead. Sigh, what a pity. The problem might be all the rehashing of the same story over and over again, when there are more stories to tell.
I’m also happy for MBC but KBS will go on the marathon soon with six flying dragons good luck to them and the 50 episodes.. I think that airing will go all the way into 2016
I can certainly avoid this one, unless they populate it with an actor or actress that I really like. I hated May Queen and Golden Rainbow (the script for sure, not some of the acting…)
I do like Hwajung, Splendid Politics. Cha Seung-Won is wonderful, and it is worth watching just for him. I dislike the romance part, and the two young actors involved (Seo Kang-Joon and Lee Yeon-Hee). Talk about BAD casting!
Historical drama are the best…modern korean dramas are not to atractive in Latin America. …the casting was good…maybe too long…actors are excellent. …
Oh how i loved May Queen. true it wasn’t a quality drama but it was a very addicting makjang, the sort you can’t help but love, like guilty pleasure. the child actors were fantastic there and so are the male leads and the villain.
woman centric kdrama doesn’t sound so interesting to me to be honest but if the casting will be good i’ll consider it.
And i can see i did good with not starting hwajung and waited for reviews cause i don’t see any enthusiasm like i seen with empress ki and other prime time saeguks..
May Queen and Golden Rainbow is absolutely similar, and it’s frustating! I don’t know why MBC still hold such as idiot screenwriter, and even give him a primetime slot! You can even see his rating at asianwiki as low as 30/100! http://asianwiki.com/Son_Young-Mok_-_screenwriter
@ockoala, just accept that you do not like the sageuk premise, Hwajung is interesting and enjoyable only if you like political intrigue and the slow building of events and relationships that is present in all sageuks. However, you have repeatedly shown yourself to be more of a rom-com person in your previous comments about shows and recap preferences. Thus, obviously, it will be boring to you.
No, no… I notoriously am a “sageuk person” and Hwajung is still run-of-the-mill fare. It’s just lazily structured (same old MBC-styled RPG sageuk shenanigans), insipidly plotted (with the narrative taking a plunge towards the ridiculous whenever dealing with the titular princess), political “intrigue” is not really all that intriguing (especially because it shows little period awareness) and the acting isn’t anything to write home about.
I’m also notoriously a “sageuk person” and watcher, and in fact am still watching Hwajung because my family is watching it. It’s not good. The only good thing you can say about it is that Cha Seung Won is outclassing the rest of the cast by miles. The plot is poorly structured, the conflict is poorly written and 90% of the acting is mediocre (although you could claim it’s fine with what they are given to work with). I’m not even annoyed by the massive liberties taken with history, because the result is just plain boring.
Aww… don’t be so harsh on Son Young-Mok. ㅋㅋㅋ
He did write some fine stuff in the recent past, like President, and at least two classics earlier on in his career (머나먼 나라 and 천둥소리). But yeah, I know. Very makjang prone as of late and WhatHaveYouDoneForMeLately. Don’t blame you.
I watched only the part with kids in May Queen, but they were really great ! For me Park Gun Tae is understimate, he was good in Warrior Baek Dong So, Goddess of fire or May Queen but he’s always the second lead 🙁 (who are more interesting than the first leads in these 3 dramas)