Penultimate Episode of Fantasy Sageuk Arthdal Chronicles Bring in 6.412% Ratings

It’s finale weekend over on tvN as the big budgeted and highly promoted fantasy sageuk Arthdal Chronicles wraps up its ambitious tale with the final two episodes. The penultimate episode brought in 6.412% ratings, so part 3 of this drama in the end could not give it a much needed ratings boost beyond the 6% range it averaged during its run. This will be considered a flop for male lead Song Joong Ki while Jang Dong Gun continues his streak of stealing the show as the antagonist and coming out winning even if the project doesn’t do as well in ratings or box office – same thing happened last year with zombie sageuk Rampant with Hyun Bin.

I thought Song Joong Ki’s darker twin character was more interesting and his performance way more memorable there but sadly it was nice curly haired twin that was set up as the hero. Kim Ji Won overall is a miscast for me but I don’t think a bigger name or better actress female lead could have brought in more ratings. Overall this drama was a dud in story and execution, despite it’s sky high 54 billion won budget. Compare that to second highest budget Mr. Sunshine at 40 billion won and more than double the just premiered Vagabond with a 25 million won budget. K-ent should study C-dramas for the fantasy period story and style for a change.


Penultimate Episode of Fantasy Sageuk Arthdal Chronicles Bring in 6.412% Ratings — 28 Comments

  1. Koala I guess you have no idea but sjk is the one receiving rave reviews from knetz and Inetz viewers for his dual performance even more than jdg. Both male leads were appreciated for their performance but as usual you twisted the word to bring more traffic. Though I believe they both shined in their respective role.

    • You can go to be netizenbuzz to read the reviews you’ll see that most of the praise is directly towards JDY. Not saying that SJK wasn’t good especially as Saya but JDY has the bulk of the praise for this drama.

      • I think you are talking about Netizendrama. Go check out directly from Naver articles. Jdg has been receiving praises in part 3,But sjk performance has been praised since part 2.check out melohwa.blogshot. They have been translating top comments on all the epi.

  2. Haven’t watched Arthadal, Rampant or Vagabond, but I agree with ockoala – no one does Fantasy like the C-dramas. They’re unique and damn good! They have the best writing and the most fleshed out, complex and layered characters. Kdrama writers should take notes from them: their characterization is too one dimensional and flat. Maybe it’s because Kdramas have to squeeze everything to fit into 16 episodes; but the truth is, the writing for their weekend family dramas with 50 episodes is no better.

    • Fantasy C-dramas mostly based on novels, thus the better writings because they already have that source materials. I can’t remember watching a fantasy C-drama that not based on novels. Also, you are right about the longer eps which I think is crucial for this type of genre to really give proper backstory and unleash the plot. Not to mention C-dramas have higher budget (as for Arthdal, they do have high budget which optimizedly used). Nevertheless, I do agree, China is better at producing fantasy genre dramas.

  3. I do like arthdal. And for personally, Kim Ok Bin’s performance is really good. Much much much better than Kim Jiwon. While for SJK, i like Saya more than Eunseom. Eunseom spent most of his time in running away.. while Saya is busy to build his own kingdom. Lols. I really like the 1st season and wish to see more of Eunseom on 2nd season but such a disappointment. Taelha and Saya are more intrigued than other characters. Jgd is fine.. but not my fave.

    This drama needs another season. 18 episodes aren’t enough. I still like it, but mostly bcuz of Saya and Taelha.

    Hopefully they will make season 4th etc…

  4. Jang Dong Gun is the first-billed actor in the credits though (ahead of Song Joong Ki) so if he’s the lead, it’s not like he ‘stole the show’, he just did a great job and was recognised for it. Song Joong Ki seems to be winning a lot of praise for playing two characters though. And imo the two female leads are well cast, Kim Ji Won is the youngest but holds her own even in scenes with JDG/SJK/KOB.

    I think some people are too stuck on the weird styling and pacing of the early episodes, this is a different type of drama from the usual sageuks and kdrama stories – the main protagonists of the story (Tagon, Taealha, even Saya) are antiheroes who do terrible things. Some of the stuff with tribes and politics gets repetitive but I find it very interesting to see Arthdal as a portrayal of a representative government turning into a dictatorship, and a nation being built by enslaving or suppressing other cultures to “unify” them all under one banner. That’s not at all common in kdrama.

  5. I have to admit, This is one of the best Jang Dong Gun performances I’ve seen. He is on fire compare to his Suit performances. But I think this drama is carried by a fine ensemble cast, So I don’t mind Joong Ki is not the main focus. For me Joong Ki is incredible in this drama. It’s a treat for me as a fans. I actually prefer him as Eun Seum, his naivety seems so geniune it’s just touch me. The writing might be abit lacking to some, but to said this drama is a mess, I still can’t relate to that opinion yet.

  6. I blame the story. Events just kept moving in circles. Especially with Eunseom’s character. He got kidnapped and his friends saved him. His friends got kidnapped so he had to save him. I think this happened 5 or 6 times. The usage of Igutu powers felt convenient. Part of the story should have been both Eunseom and Saya learning how to properly use them.

    As for Kim Ji Won’s character, she kept talking about gaining power and finally she took over Asa Ron’s position, but then nothing really changed. I wish they had pushed that story plot earlier and then given her a plot to try and win power over Jang Dong Gun’s character.

    And what happened to the horse? Eunseom rode it and so he was believed to be Arumon Haesulla (or whatever). But Jang Dong Gun never rode this fated horse and was still believed to be him?

    All around I enjoyed some parts of this show, but there were several things left open-ended and I found myself fast-forwarding through the lengthy episodes. It’s bad when you can understand what’s happening / follow such a “convoluted” storyline by skipping around.

  7. From what I understood, this drama was sold to Netflix and TVN. Judging it a total failure by correlating only the domestic ratings of TVN and the high production cost doesn’t really paint the full picture. Also, there is no point to compare this show to Chinese fantasy dramas – it is too different. The production company that made AC shared that the large part of the high cost went into production of the sets, where they built it just for this show as it will have multiple seasons. As it has been said, there will be 3 seasons of AC. Up until now, it is only season 1 (divided into 3 parts). There are many international fans watching this show on Netflix and are enjoying it. I found the show to be very well written, string characters and am looking forward to the next season.

  8. I really liked it.Song joong ki and Kim ji won are the best couple in this drama.please continue this drama with them.I preferred Saya instead of Eun sum.I did not waste my time to watch this.After(Jumong) it was the second drama that attracted me after years.please ,please,please continue this drama with dear Ji won and dear song joong ki.thank you all Arthdal chronicles ‘s staff and actors.

  9. Anyone else upset about the way it ended? 18 episodes, and we are only at the mark that establishes Tagon on one side and Eunseom on the other. We didn’t even get to the meat of the story omg.

    With the ratings so dismal against its big budget production, plus the cold reception from Korean viewers, I doubt that a next season will be made.

    Now I’m beginning to think SJK deliberately timed his divorce news smack in the middle of airing so that he doesn’t have to return to a show that “bombed” (personally, I like it).

      • I didn’t know that, good that he has a good rship w the staff. Hopefully this means he will be back for Season 2. The story is FAR from finished!!!

  10. Unlike what koala think Arthdal chronicles didn’t flop. It rating were below the expected and it received mixed reviews in Part 1, but Part 2 and esp Part 3 received positive reviews from knetz and they are even demanding Season 2. Even producers are positive considering Season 2.

    • AC is on Netflix and is trending and regardless as to how it fared in Korea domestically it’s far from finished. Season 2 and 3 are definitely needed. I’m proud that AC dared to do something different and like MOA they both ventured outside the KDrama realm of playing it safe stick to your comfort zone and stay on the straight and narrow. That being said Congratulations on getting an average of 6% for the first season on cable TV. Mz Koala calls AC a flop because it didn’t do well in the ratings however how can her favourite ‘Her Private Life’ be called a hit at 2%? I don’t get it but I do suck at Maths though. I’m trying to figure it out but what I do know is that the writing was on the wall for AC from the beginning and it did Mz Koala no favours at all as it was clear as day she didn’t like it at all and rightfully so it wasn’t everyone’s cup of tea but to dismiss it as a flop is utter clap trap.

    • I think she means it flopped considering the amount of money put into it. Other tvN dramas in the same time slot with a lesser budget (example: Mr. Sunshine, Memories of Alhambra, Hotel del Luna, etc.) did better. tvN marketed Arthdal as their blockbuster drama of the year just like they did for Mr. Sunshine but it performed nowhere near it.

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