Production Highlights Lee Min Ho and Kim Go Eun’s Romance in New Stills for The King: Eternal Monarch Heading into Second Half Run

This week feels like it will be an inflection point in the airing of SBS Fri-Sat drama The King: Eternal Monarch. It’s ratings are what it is, currently averaging 8.7% AGB nationwide through the first 8 episodes which is undoubtedly not as expected for a drama from hit screenwriter Kim Eun Sook, with a huge 32 billion won budget and big name male lead Lee Min Ho with leading lady Kim Go Eun with movie acclaim under her belt. With that said, the drama is getting more cohesive incrementally and those who want to see the drama through the end as a completist now have 8 episodes under their belt and 8 more to go.

The production team shared new stills this week showing a sweet quiet kiss moment between leads Lee Min Ho’s King Lee Gon and Kim Go Eun’s detective Jung Tae Eul and visually it’s a gorgeous tableau. The colors are so complementary, I love Kim Go Eun’s sand colored shirt with forest green cardigan and the leads height difference really pops in this scene. Unless episode 9 and 10 turn out to be even worse than the first half, I hope this drama has an Uncontrollably Fond trajectory (it keeps getting better and the ending was amazing and validates sticking with it) and I’m going into this weekend wanting a refresh start with The King, me and it will wipe away the first 8 episodes and see what the next 8 has in store.


Production Highlights Lee Min Ho and Kim Go Eun’s Romance in New Stills for The King: Eternal Monarch Heading into Second Half Run — 81 Comments

  1. The kissing still looks so awkward esp with her wide eye surprised doe look.

    I hope episode 9 is a repeat of episode 8 where romance was minimal.

      • I think it get go lower than 5% in the coming episodes, instead of being the biggest drama of the year, it is becoming the biggest flop of the year. Such karma for the gloating fans who thought they had the ratings in the bag just because of the writer. Shows that LMH has no star power, pilot episode only garnered 10%, which is mostly attributed to star writer.

      • Star writer and that so-called star actor can now go back to thee drrawing board.The poor-girl guy dramas are no longer popular.

  2. After TKEM, I hope KES go back to the PD of MS, Goblin and DOTS. Also, I hope she cast new faces and new names like:

    Kim Soo Hyun, Park Seo Joon, Park Bo Gum, Joo Ji Hoon and Kim Woo Bin

    Son Ye Jin, Jun Ji Hyun, Kim So Hyun, Bae Suzy, Kim Yoo Jung and IU

    • LOL, no.

      there is a reason why some Kdrama A-listers turn down KES’s drama. And I’m not talking bout K-movie A-listers either.

      • Lol. A lot of KES’ drama cast are Kdrama A-listers. So, the something you are talking about just speaks of “minority”.

      • I think it will be unfair to say that all drama A listers turn down KES offer. Cause we have Lee Byun Hyun’s case on point.I mean that man is a double edged sword in both drama and movie category.
        However I do know that DOTS was turned down by many including Kim Woo Bin. Also Secret Garden was first offered to Jang Hyuk who was fresh from the success of Slave Hunters. Hyun Bin had MNKSS as a success under his belt but still Kim Sunah was a major factor in it. Although Song Joong Ki’s Innocent Man was praised it was not that big hit. However it was KES’s projects which solidified their A listers and hallyu status. I m talking about dramaland only. HB was so good that he even went on to get a BAEKSANG Daesang for Sega.SJK also got a Daesang for I guess KBS.
        Even Gong Yoo had a drama slump before Goblin.And Yoon Eun Hye was more catapulted after CP.
        So I think KES projects were indeed masterstroke in their lives and they became insanely famous outside SK.Her scripts may be corney but these actors’ prowess alleviated it.

      • But one thing I m sure after this King debacle .That is no A lister will choose KES projects blindly. Cause they know in this era,even their starpower can’t save a sloppy script.KES should write better scripts next time and then only she could approach A listers.

      • @Paige,

        Indeed. There are A-listers that CAN and WILL survive without the need to resort to KES’ scripts. For example, Choi Seung-Woo and Bae Doo Na.

      • I’m not sure if these were the exact reasons but I read that DotS was turned down because those actors didn’t wanna do a pre-produced drama and go overseas for shooting. So KES probably had nothing to do with them turning down the offer.

      • @Paige

        Lee Byung Hun, Jang Dong Gun, Gong Yoo, Lee Beom Soo, Song Yoon Ah and Cha Seung Won beg to differ. I think these names are part of the A-listers of Chungmuro, no? all have the acting skills, critical acclaim and box office magnets to boot.

        Gong Yoo had also turned down KES several times (even DOTS), she kept pursuing him relentlessly before he finally agreed to star in Goblin. We won’t know whether there are a lot of A-listers (drama or movie) that have turned down KES dramas, but I don’t think we can generalize on reasons why they chose to turn down or accept KES offers. It could be the script, it could be scheduling, it could be locations; lots of factors.

    • Yah, no. If they change the female lead – which I know is impossible at this point – I may go back and watch it. There’s a lot of wrong things going with this drama, and she’s one of them.

      • Kim Go Eun isn’t bad in acting before. Though probably because being KES’s drama makes her acting recedes like sand slide.

        LMH is not good either with his little acting. His face is monotone as drywall.

        I think both of them need to go back to acting academy. Theater students are better than this.

      • For all of y’all that are saying the male lead and female lead acting suck and need to go back to acting school. How about yourself, can y’all act like they do. These casts are amazing at their jobs and they have been acting for a long time so they know how to act. Instead of badmouthing celebs about their acting when you can’t do it yourself, how about just shut up and don’t watch the drama if you don’t like it and watch it if you do. A lot of people like the drama so nobody gives a f# if you hate.

      • Eidy. The majority of commentators here are not professional actors. How about yourself? If you get paid the big bucks in acting, you better deliver good ratings!!! Geez…. are you saying LMH & KGE are one of us?? U shut up. U go act and let me watch U!

    • agreed. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. the drama is like melatonin. good remedy for insomnia.
      Kill the Fl, (planned) romance part in the drama surely the rating will pick up.

  3. For all of y’all that are saying the male lead and female lead acting suck and need to go back to acting school. How about yourself, can y’all act like they do. Are you doing any movies or dramas. These casts are amazing at their jobs and they have been acting for a long time so they know how to act. Instead of badmouthing celebs about their acting when you can’t do it yourself, how about just shut up and don’t watch the drama if you don’t like it and watch it if you do. A lot of people like the drama so nobody gives a f# if you hate.

    • Well, the viewers are not actors but that doesn’t mean they can’t tell bad acting from good acting. It’s like when you get a bad haircut at a salon, you can’t complain because you can’t cut your own hair? Or if you get served a bad meal at a restaurant, you can’t give negative feedback because you can’t cook yourself? No wonder Lee Min Ho hasn’t improved on his acting all these years, because mediocrity is totally acceptable to his rabid fans. Look, you have the right you enjoy the drama, but others also have the right to express their opinions even if it’s not all positive. If only positive reviews are allowed, then all movies would get positive ratings and it would make it pointless.

      • Do you know what acting in the first place? Because I don’t think you do? What is the criteria to find judge an actor saying his good or that is bad. There are no such thing acting is subjective. Believe it or not Lee Min Ho manages to connect with his audience something I can’t say for your favourite one.

        So don’t come in here thinking that you now the secrets of the universe or now who is good or bad. You don’t and in fact there is no criteria period is all subjective

      • @Jonas and @Eidy,LHM may be good. But he hasn’t really proven his range given the characters he has chosen to portray. And it’s a shame. Lee Gon is one of the most one-dimensional characters he has to play and the directing and editing have further hampered the ability of the character to truly connect with the other characters in the show as well as the audience.

        Appreciation of one’s performance may be subjective. It’s a matter of preference and taste. But yes you can objectively judge an actor’s range and skill based on the works he’s done. And if you can look at his body of work objectively as well, there’s not much of a difference from all the characters he’s portrayed so far.

        I’ve said it before, LMH isn’t exactly without talent. But he’s chosen to tread the safe waters for so long I think it’s time to do something more challenging, outside of his comfort zone.

        Also, why do we always take criticisms to be a bad thing? Negative criticisms about his performance doesn’t automatically mean that people don’t like him or that they don’t want him to succeed. Dissatisfaction and frustration are just being expressed openly. Unless, you want this page to be run ala North Korea.

      • @Jushi what is even proven range? You say alot of things but don’t realize what they mean.

        You said he played the same characters are you sure about this? Lets say what he played?

        A General, Gangster, Bounty Hunter and Vigilante, A king, Architect, 2 times school boy and scholar + con artist.. Are these the same really?

        Alot of people tend to make themselves forget what he did in the past. Was he not a gangster not long ago in Gangnam Blues or a General in Faith (He was even to young to pull that character off but he did it and he pull it off) (City Hunter where it required him to do Action nonstop and nearly got himself killed shooting the drama in car accident)

        So don’t come in here and try to lecture us in what you don’t understand in the first place

      • Yes his fans got no problem see him in the same role over and over again despite being in the shobiz for decade

    • do you necessarily have to be a chef to say how a meal tastes?
      if you can’t cook, does it mean you shouldnt eat as well?
      who are actors making films and movies for? other actors?pds?professionals?
      when you choose a career like acting which has direct connection with ppl, you should prepare yourself for their dislikes as well.

  4. Same, I am excited for the second half of this drama… and also wistfully thinking that they can somehow re-edit/re-score the first 6 episodes to make the love storyline more credible and swoon-worthy… the drama will after all be streamed in Netflix for all eternity, lol.

    • Already on Netflix and I like it this far. Storyline is good. Living in Alaska I am not familiar with actors from other countries, but I am truly enjoying The King and leading lady.?

  5. They shouldn’t highlight the love story because it’s most disapointing part but the big battle between the Lee Gon and his Uncle.

    A lot of people missed the love story train and don’t care about it but are very interested in the rest of the story : how it works, who is Shin Jae, who will save the young Lee Gon, etc.

    • My friend and I have been discussing this. And been going back to previous episodes. She has this theory that the one who saved the young LG was LG himself based from built of the savior.
      Is there a time travel factor in this one?

      • Necessarily someone went in the past because this person had Ta Eul ID from 2019.

        This person didn’t have Ta Eul’s silhouette so Lee Gon could be a possibility but he’s a bad shooter (he was the last in army, he lost in the game). For now, it’s the Evil Uncle who has the ID and he was a trained soldier and he has the same silhouette. We know that Shin Jae is a good shooter too, better than Ta Eul and he’s tall too.

      • @Dick So what if she is?? It’s her perspective and beauty isn’t something that can be defined physically. I know KGE is doing really bad in this drama. But that doesn’t gives anyone a licensed to mock their looks. Are you really that pretty to have the confidence to someone’s looks

      • Yes she is pretty. Chanel wouldn’t take her as ambassador if she isn’t. Please stop being such a hater. The world doesn’t need that right now. Even if you think she’s not pretty it doesn’t matter to her coz she’s making so much money with all her endorsements. Btw ur name suits you.

      • There is no if’s and’s or but’s. She is so not. @Lala – r u jealous u don’t have one?

  6. Should I pick it up again??.Let me see.. I was halfway through the episode 8 and put it on hold. Since then I m not having the urge to continue it.. Although I m still curious about the direction of the story and all that parallel universe but I m not ready to witness the non-existent chemistry as well as the countless fillers which serves no purpose to the main story .With this I decided to just read the recaps. I will wait for the reviews .If they are encouraging who knows I may go back to watch it.
    I made up my mind to watch some underrated gems. Started with Be Melodramatic..and I must say it is really good so far.

    • @mayy Loved Be Melodramatic. Happy that it is getting the recognition is deserves esp after IU mentioned that she liked it. Right now, I am liking Hospital Playlist as well. It is light and character-driven. Ratings keep getting higher each episode as well. 🙂

      • I m planning to Binge-watching HP after it finishes airing. I m watching this weekender called “Once Again”. It is amazing and the pace is so good. Usually family dramas tend to bore me but not this.Even the ratings are increasing day by day.

  7. I almost dropped this at ep 7 but after watching ep 8, I plan to continue. But yes, agree with a number of you that the romance between the leads should be minimized. Sorry, their scenes are anything but romantic. Their acting is not the issue, it’s more like the way their love story unfolded was unconvincing to most.

  8. Love then. Haters gonna hate.
    They are also very natural pffscreen and i havent seen lmb ppened up with his cistar in ages. With jjh he was always respectful to his senior
    And kim go eun keepa blushing in interviews. I used to think she is some serious person but she is cheerful. Their interviews are delight and shipper have already making videos on them with body oanguage hints lol. I also ship then if it happens??

  9. Yeah, the promise of another dead fish kiss is not enticing me at all. I’m basically only watching to see what the hell is up with the flute at this point. I finished watching episode 8 in 10 minutes because of how much I skimmed through the damn thing. It’s a lost hope by now and even the general public knows it. Kim Eunsook is probably in the greatest shock of her life at the moment so someone please check on her.

    Lee Minho may not be the best actor in dramaland but neither is he bad enough to warrant these ratings, especially considering this is his first project post army gig. Kim Goeun, on the other hand, had this coming. She was terrible in Goblin, terrible in that cheese trap drama and she’s terrible in this. Maybe she’ll take this experience as constructive criticism and go back to acting college or whatever.

    • agree
      I tried a few episodes but KGE always far beyond my tolerance limits.
      KES needed this shock to stop writting rich-boy-falls-in-love stories.
      Writer-nim Go try urself with a tragedy,criminal,thriller,action,mystery,etc. and if you did – for the sake of God- dont cast KGE in it.

      • @arron why do you hate KGE so much? I think she’s a great actress A lot of people in the entertainment industry agrees or they won’t cast her. So you say she’s not good but she keeps getting awards and getting nominated and amazing actors she’s worked with and directors are only saying praises for her. In fact if you do ur research some actors actually request to cast her so before you give you just lash out your hatred towards an actress it’s not very kind. It’s unnecessary. If you don’t like her fine stop watching her shows but she will still be In series and movies even if you don’t like her.

      • people have the right to like/dislike others out loud.
        my/others dislikes dont affect her career? so whats your worry here? my opinion has the same right and necessity as yours does.
        do you just go and check on actor/actresses and say like “WOW this one has won a lot of awards so lets like him/her”?! or “Nahh,this one has won a lot of awards so I cant dislike him/her”?!
        cause I dont. for me, not enjoying that person on screen is enough to dislike.
        I have already avoided any drama/movie including her.
        and dont confuse hatred with dislike. Hate is a strong words with powerful emotions behind, neither I know her personally nor she has done sth to me. hatred requires reasons. disliking doesnt. there is a difference.

      • @arron yes I know what the difference between hate and dislike. I have so many things I dislike but I don’t passionately as you do right now wasting all ur rants about Her and no I don’t just google stars and like them for their awards. I think she’s a versatile actor. Yes she’s not typical pretty actress but that’s the best part coz she can act different roles. You just need to look at her eyes and can act tough in coin locker girl and cute in Goblin not a lot of actress can do that. So that is why I like her. I’m not some crazy fan of hers. I just find it it really ridiculous all the hatred not just towards her but the director, LMH etc. As you said you already dislike her and stopped watching her shows. I do the same with actors I don’t like. But unlike you I just don’t air them with so much passion. You think it doesn’t sound like hatred but it does. Coz ur spending time airing ur huge dislike not once but so many times. I only pointed your comment out because I think we already have too much negativity. Urs isn’t considered criticism. It’s called bashing. It’s not very nice. Just because we have freedom of speech we can just air them just because. You won’t like it if it’s done to you.I’m not trying to argue with you.Stop watching her shows as you’ve done. Then that’s good for you. Anyway she doesn’t know you and you don’t know her. She’d still be getting a lot of support as an actress for me and a lot of us as she is truly a versatile actress of her generation.

      • My exact feeling when I tried watching Goblin but was turned off by her after a few eps. If anything I am glad TKEM flopped so KES will stop casting her.

      • well good that you dont choose people base on their awards. dont try to convince others with same option either. you say that you get it if I dislike her but looks like you dont.
        am I stopping you? did I repley a comment of her fans and make laugh out of them for liking her?or argue with them for why they like her?or down looking them for liking her?
        Im talking to those who share same opinion as me. go back read my words. did I ever say a HARSH word toward her? dude if you call this bashing then I must say you have no idea what real bashing is. you think you do, but you seriously dont. I can boldly say my comments are the politest dislikes to her. no badmouthing ,no laughing at her,no disrespecting,
        Im not saying a word about her beauty or personalitiy or anything! Im just saying I dont like her. and I say it as many times as I desire and I spend my time however I like to.
        is it that hard to get?
        if you wanna call me a hater or basher then well,go on,, do, ’cause I cant stop you. but Im probably the best of them you have ever seen.
        I dont stop you liking her so dont you stop me disliking her.Simple.

  10. Actually from what I noticed in most KES dramas, is that the lead actor n actress always fall in love out of nowhere like there is no build up to the chemistry like it just happens.. maybe tats y the romance in TKEM doesnt leave a sweet impression..

    I stil wonder how on earth kim go eun can be this famous w that face n poor acting.. n damn she is lucky to get to act w good looking guys like gong yoo n LMH.. i really hope to see LmH take a new different role like for example in action movies or as a police, doctor.

    • sign me for action/thriller.
      He rocks in those kinda genre but he said he wont because extra working in young ages caused health prblms for him,,sth like that.
      yet he can take other roles like doctor or artist. he can stop the typecasted prodecure he has taken for a considerable period of time. its been a long time since CH and GB.
      everyone just stay away from KES for awhile. oh exception, as long as KES keeps writting cheesy stories she can take KGE for herself. if they work together Ill pass only one project and not two. so,, better for me.
      I cant bear her on screen. cringing every time I see a picture of her let alone a movie or series.
      she is hyped.

      • I think his problem is he lacks passion for act thats why he doesn’t want yo take risk and grab easy money by playing a role that need to look good on camera

  11. I already leave the ship long ago… Still cannot understand how ML like the FL out of the blue..too many PPL…have been waiting this series from last year but sad to say there is zero chemistry..

  12. I don’t know why people who hate the drama still have time to post here. I also don’t think it’s fair to say that KGE didn’t do well in Goblin coz she didn’t get nominated for it. She is an versatile actress but you can’t accept that because you don’t like her because of her looks. Get Over it. She’s been well praised by other actors she’s worked with and people who are in the industry who are more knowledgeable than us. I think the hatred toward Lee Min Ho and her for this drama is really just too much. If I don’t like the drama I just stop watching it. I don’t waste my precious time talking bad about it or the actors because that’s just so not needed. Maybe you aren’t their target audience. There are dramas that were rated highly that I didn’t like. But that’s also just a preference. I like this drama it isn’t the best I’ve seen but it makes me laugh especially during lockdown. I see it as entertainment not something I should take a personal vendetta and nit pick all the faults. There are actors I don’t like and I think don’t act well I don’t go around bashing them. Stop spreading this negativity. It’s not needed. Constructive criticisms are good but bashing is never acceptable. If you don’t like it stop watching but if you have nothing better to say find another drama that will make you happy like this drama makes me and a lot of us.

  13. TKEM ratings just sank to an all time low for episode 9 – 5.8 and 6.3 against TWOFTM’s 24.44 and 24.33.

  14. every episode nakes me happy and fell so exciting bec.of the new style i saw in every episode..lee min hoo is the no.1actor in korea even here in phil we support all his dramma even his leading lady in all her dramma…i love you my oppa

  15. I like “The King”. I’m always excited to watch 2 episodes per week. LMH is awesome…the leading lady is simply beautiful, seems she has no face jobs..very natural beauty. Looking forward to watch ep 11 and 12, it could be more ecxiting.
    Enjoy watching everyone. Stay safe. God bless

  16. I love this series, everyone can have an opinion as viewers but not as specialist. I think, and it’s my opinion, that everyone are playing just fantastically.

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  24. So much negative criticism! TKEM is an amazing production. Thanks to Netflix I’ve watched all 16 episodes and truly enjoyed the plot, the lead actors interactions and their relationship with the supporting ones. The setting and cinematography are beautiful to watch. I highly recommend this show!

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