The King: Eternal Monarch Wraps Filming After 7 Months and This Week Episode 13 Delayed So Only 1 Episode Airing

I wonder if The King: Eternal Monarch would have been better done Memento style, we see the ending and rewind backwards to learn alongside the leads what is happening. Maybe Kim Eun Sook intended it that way with the opening scene with blood splattered bad uncle Lee Rim being interrogated by Tae Eul and Shin Jae in a police interrogation room. But then it headed into traditional storytelling and completely lost itself in its own mythology. Putting ideas on a board like King Lee Gon writes in old school chalk his mathematical formulas to figure out a pattern to the parallel universes does not a good drama make. Lee Gon knows what he’s looking for, the viewer doesn’t and requires the PD to string together the story in the screenwriter’s head because we don’t live there and intuitive know what her grand plan is.

And there has to be a grand plan, I refuse to accept that 6 weeks have been wasted hoping this drama would somehow coalesce, and whatever Kim Eun Sook still wants to throw at me for the remaining 4-episodes I’ll be waiting to gobble up the good bits and dodge the PPL. With that said, kudos to the cast and crew for working hard on this, the poor PPL writer on Kim Eun Sook’s squad must’ve bent her brain sideways to work so much into the script and all the actors are legit taking this drama seriously albeit sometimes emoting in unintentionally hilarious ways. I’ve grown accustomed to watching TKEM on Fridays because it can either be better than excepted (yay!) or much worse but in ways that make me want to headdesk and laugh (so also yay?). Sadly this week Friday’s episode 13 will be preempted by SBS to air the movie Contagion, a bit late for that round of theatrical education on pandemics, and episode 13 will instead air on Saturday. That means TKEM will wrap up on June 12th Friday with its final episode 16.


The King: Eternal Monarch Wraps Filming After 7 Months and This Week Episode 13 Delayed So Only 1 Episode Airing — 59 Comments

  1. SBS is so done with this drama, they did not get their money’s worth and are trying to show a film that has been available in most online portals for months to their audience instead of this mess. One good side could be they can actually utilize their time to better edit the rest of the last remaining episodes and actually give us a good solid end.

    • I would like to say I honestly love the actors. All of the actors were great. I never get enough of the dramas. I usually don’t comment but I wanted to give this movie a Very High POSITIVE note! Regardless of negative comments, I applaud ALL the Actors for letting us in enjoy this movie.

  2. On twitter, lee min Nos fans attack those who are expressing their dislike on TKEM, i would say that he has the worst fans, who cannot accept negative comments about their super mediocre actor Lee min No No. He should win the award the Fovever mediocre actor.
    SBS stop airing this Flop drama and give us backstreet roockie.

      • you changed your user name again? what a shame! backstreet will outperform The not so king eternal monarch in terms of viewership rating. Lee min No , kim Go Nun and KES= 5.2% rating. ???

      • I’m a fan of LMH, I can say this drama just the worst, so confusing the story all over the place, I don’t enjoy watching it, sometimes too chesee or to dark and doesn’t make sense. I’m sorry LMH you are great in acting but the story just ehh…as a fan I care about you i hope you don’t mind and hope will choose better drama in future

    • Considering your pov that he is a mediocre actor, kudos to him to have such huge popularity and successful dramas.
      (And before you say anything, I’m not a LMH die hard fan, just someone who likes his work even if not in all dramas)

    • His fans are mad that Backstreet Rookie will likely do better in ratings despite lower budget and no KES. Not their fan, but never forget LMH fan said KYJ and JCW should thank LMH for the buzz they will receive as the drama following The King lmao. But look at the ratings now.. a disaster. Karma is a btch.

    • I’m not big fan of Lee minho but I like some of his works. When the trailer came I wanted watch this drama but after the release and news on rating I thought it will be loss of time. Don’t I didn’t bother about the drama. I believed all the negative comments and news regarding the drama. Then I decided to watch just one episode. That completely change my way of thinking. I was watching it with a critic mind…but the drama is really good and decided to keep watching. I feel sorry how people are negatively criticizing this work. I don’t anything to hate too much in this drama. It is good fantasy drama.

    • Sorry for you joane, am sure you
      Don’t possess half his quality nor talents, all you are good at is criticising poeple’s good effort? .shame on you, I will be looking out for you in a movie that’s if you ever can act??

    • Yes it went on hiatus twice. First one was to buy some time for better filming conditions and give some rest to the crew members who were working round the clock to meet the deadline.
      Second time it was for the Chinese Lunar New Year. Well it is common for dramas to not air during that time.
      CLOY filming wrapped up only around 2-3 days before the finale.So they were indeed working on a tight schedule.

      However its rating momentum was quite undeterred but I don’t know how this is going to affect the already declining ratings of TKEM.

      • It could give them some time to do better editing with whatever footage that they have and really work on delivering better final product. On the flip side, people who don’t watch this with half heart could tune out further.

      • I don’t think they care about Telly ratings. As they have recovered and made profit and The stats inside sk is also very deceptive one. Objectively looking at while TV ratings might not show to be good but that is not the whole story here. It has like 56% on Wavve streaming platform in SK which has around 15mio subscribers and has been placed 1. on the platform ever since airing.

        I never believed in the SK ratings for whatever reasons it just didn’t make logic and I was proven right to not buying it simply flat it just seemed artificial to me. I know for a fact this series is one of these few once that you gotta watch even few episodes or even 1 episode of it

      • @Noonish
        It’s OK to not care about the SK TV ratings cuz you enjoy the show hence doesn’t matter to you. But to say that the stats inside SK is deceptive or say you don’t believe it and it’s artificial, is really carrying it too far. TV ratings are done by AC Nielsen, as in MOST countries, and it’s a worldwide acclaimed & audited research agency with proven track record & methodology. I believe it’s the biggest research agency in the world. So there is nothing “wrong” with the ratings. You can argue about the non-disclosure of online viewing data, but that’s beyond anyone’s control. Plus, these TV ratings worked just fine for ALL other drama’s proof of popularity (or non-popularity) to TV viewers in SK. So please don’t discredit the data just because your fav drama does not show the TV ratings results you want to see.

      • @sys

        It’s not fave drama not even watching it currently as I have other things on my hands. I was being neutral. To end this before it carries on I stand by what I said. Lets agree to disagree and move on

      • @Noonish
        Not here to argue, but when you state something like it’s facts, then it will invite counter-argument. And it’s totally fine to agree to disagree. I choose to look at what has been proven and audited.

    • It did TWICE, but still with proper direction, writing and acting in place,it has no harm what so ever to the ratings before snd after the pre-emption, as the cast and production crew know what they are doing.

  3. Long shot, but I really hope they can re-edit the previous episodes (delete/add some scenes), or even change the sequence of some episodes, put better musical scoring. Even if the real-time airing on tv/cable will be completed, at least the final end product left on Netflix will be much better? I feel bad for the cast and crew, I watched the BTS and seems like they were working hard and also having so much fun on the set. One can wish. 😀 But the tacky scenes for the PPL were too much, those could have been done more subtly.

    • Hoping the same about re-editing and put some music, especially for the first 8 episodes, n totally agree with the PPL!

  4. Personally, this makes me happy, i get to catch up before the finale on my birthday!! I’ll still have something to celebrate even if it’s a huge dissappointment LOL.

    I’ve been hearing so much about episode 11 & 12 so i’m excited to watch. The drama has a lot of flaws but despite all that, i shockingly still find it a really interesting watch. I know the ratings and reception must be a tough swallow for the hard working cast & crew though, i hope the international reception brings some encouragement for them. It’s probably a wake up call for some big players involved when it comes to understanding what the local korean audience prefers. Big flops happen, you finish as strong as you possibly can, try to learn from mistakes and what didn’t work for your target audience and move on to the next project.

  5. I was planning a trip to The alley while watching the new episode. Lol. I hope the last four episodes will reward me for my invested time and sticking through the drama despite its flaws and give me a satisfying ending. I have given up on it becoming a masterpiece a while back so I just enjoyed it because there are some scenes that made me laugh and cry. I congratulate the team and cast for finishing well. Hopefully they ended with positive thoughts and take home lessons from this that will make them grow in their craft and 7 months is a long time to be shooting a drama. Anyway, have a good weekend folks.

  6. I guess they chose the Friday slot for the movie instead of Saturday , due to the fact that TKEM gets its worst ratings on Friday with some fierce competition from other variety shows such as Three Meals A Day .With this I don’t think it will break the record of the lowest ratings of episode 11 this week, as King tends to do better on Saturday. But who knows some more viewers may loose interest and end up dropped it.

    • Three meals a day is truly a strong competition. It always does well whether it’s Lee Seo Jin’s team or Cha Seong Woo’s.

      I’m really disappointed that I have to wait tomorrow for episode 13. But if it’s going to give them time for better edits then so be it.

    • I don’t think they care about TV ratings tho. I reckon they have made profit already and have alot other things going on then to focus on. I think if even possible they would happily take 0.0% voluntarily if possible option for them thats how little tv matters at this stage to them. In all essence dosen’t mean much to them as they have profited

      • Oh my O pc ..??.lamest thing I ever heard.
        First of all SBS is a tv channel ,so definitely they would want people to tune in for their program. Secondly if ratings didn’t matter at all then why air it on TV,instead they should’ve opted to go fully digital like any Netflix original .
        The reasons given by fans are just hilarious. In the end it is the TV ratings that will be plastered on its Wikipedia page. I get it that the drama may have incurred its profit ,preferably let’s say from Netflix. But what about SBS?? If its ratings are so low,SBS won’t get money for advertisement and other stuffs.”No one watches tv”this doesn’t justify anything cause at the same time some other shows are skyrocketing in terms of ratings.

      • Actors will probably not be much affected but I feel bad for the other crew members.They deserved better after 7 months of hardwork.

  7. I am actually amazed by the negative reviews for this. I’ve seen much worse get better reviews… every review I’m seeing outside of Korea has been positive, and what I’ve watched so far, I agreed with the positive reviews. Maybe Koreans were wanting something easier to follow, maybe they don’t like the concept of alternate worlds… in any case, I’m amazed by the Korean reviews.

    • To be fair, all the reviews in this blogsite and also other english forums are from international audience. So I would say it’s half-half, that half gave it a negative review and half love it. So it’s not just the Korean viewers who gave it negative reviews. I am a fantasy genre fan, and love complex storyline with fantasy element. Even so, I find the plot very confusing and do not have a clear view of the end goal. It’s filmed beautifully and the interesting elements are started to come out in the last 2 or 3 few episodes. But there’s too much lag in between the storyline and unnecessary scenes that doesn’t push the plot forward, so I feel bored at times watching it. Nonetheless, I have asked around and my brother found it confusing too while my aunt thinks it’s confusing but still enjoyed it. So yeah, it can get pretty divided views.

      • This place is just a niche blog. She could still be local tho. But still it’s a niche with very small traffic to non. With happens here stays here normally.

        Normally Cindy said positive outweighes especially on Mainstream media and mainstream social media. It’s overwhelming positive

      • It is indeed divided.I personally find it entertaining maybe coz I watched it with relaxed pov after a few episodes. My friends in the US, Canada,Taiwan and I’m from London and we’re all different nationalities and they like it but I also have couple friends who told me to watch all of it first then tell them If it gets better and if it ends well that they would pick up from Ep 2. I wonder had it been casted with less famous actors and screenwriter the drama would have a different reception and the expectations would be lower and in result would not have such negative reviews. What ifs…

    • That’s very condescending. “W” raked in double digits despite TKEM fantards’ allegations that Koreans can’t follow the sci-fi genre. It’s more likely that TKEM bungled the first few episodes so much that the initially decently-sized audience just dwindled out of loss of interest.

    • Well as far as I know ,this is not the only kdrama dealing with alternate worlds and those other shows got some pretty decent ratings as well if not the best. It would be better not to question Korean’s taste cause the writer and director are not amateurs in this field to have delved into an idea which is beyond the reach of general public,in the first place.It is only that they couldn’t execute it properly.Not the fault of viewers
      . They thought the outcome would be mind-blowing but the opposite happened. Regarding the SNS frenzy, sure why not..the leads and writer comes with huge fanbase and thus they defend it to infinity calling it the best show ever.
      Even I think this show is not the worst but it is just that higher expectations lead to harsher reception. I have watched some international reviews from regular kdrama watchers in Youtube and they were more or less the same, i.e shifting more towards the negative aspect. But indeed there are some positive ones as well. So as @sys said,it is half-half.

      • This is by far one of the fairest assessment and feedback I’ve read. You only stick to the facts no pointing fingers of who to blame or not blatant hateful comments but purely constructive using facts and not emotions. I think people should stick to the facts not to hate on it and not to be deluded and be blinded to what was lacking. I’ve learned over the years to separate my feelings about actors and the drama. There are actors I am indifferent towards but I loved their drama and there are actors I love and adore and skipped some of their dramas. I just hope for the best for tkem.

  8. What an intelligent move from SBS, Fridays tend to have low ratings compared to Saturday. They want to avoid further criticisms and public’s mocking on their low ratings.

  9. I will miss it. I need my dose of WDH and KKN 😀

    They’re enough for me to watch this drama. The story is pretty interesting and fun.

    I don’t like the love story but it doesn’t bother me more than that.

  10. They are really trying their best not to break their record low ratings of ~5% by delaying the Friday episode lol! Laughing at the comments here from the chaebol’s fans trying to justify low tv ratings when there have been several hits just this year alone. “No one watches TV anymore” lol embarrassing.

    • Yes this year kdramas are on an all-time high starting from CLOY to the recently concluded Hospital Playlist along with IC ,TWOTM, it is back to back breaking so many records.All of them belonged to different genres .One was about love,other about friendship, third one is about courage, fourth one is about revenge due to infedility .And I find people here mocking korean’s interest .
      Even if we look at SBS’ own shows ,the ones preceding TKEM namely Hyena and Hot Stove League did pretty well. And not to forget RTK2.
      All these tv shows be it public or cable were aired when there already existed much competition and still they managed to garner good ratings.

      • TKEM could also have been one of them but the execution was so poorly done that people lost interest in the beginning and even though it improved later on,they did not come back.

    • That is true. It’s only a matter of time that ratings won’t matter anymore but for now broadcasters are fighting for bigger viewers share from the whatever number of audiece left.’

      In my region, you can watch program from the phone app, either live or rerun. Ads are embedded just like watching on TV.

      The premise of TKEM is better than KES previous drama Goblin. What people draw more with Goblin was probably because of the humour of the drama and it has 2 big male actors.

  11. Looks like they’re trying to buy TKEM more time. Seeing as filming wrapped this week, perhaps the drama needed more time for editing (maybe they still have a whole bunch of PPLs left to add lol). I was ready for it to end next week so I can move on and I don’t really care anymore at this point if they cut 1 episode and finish up as scheduled or add another episode of special but please give us an ending that makes sense and offer some sort of explanation. Either way I’m still going to finish it and wait for It’s Okay to not be Okay to air. Happy weekend!?

  12. Koala I just wanna say I’ve been reading ur blogs since you did recaps of the king 2 hearts and that was a very long time ago. I enjoy your reporting and writing about stars in East Asia and keeping me updated with the dramas. I laugh at your witty and honey coated sarcasm. I appreciate your fair and balance POV. So i guess this is my appreciation post for your blog and you. It might be tough at times to have people argue here but sometimes it can be entertaining. So anyway, keep up the good work!

  13. I think this drama without the romance will be better.. like i find lmh taking revenge on his uncle thingy quite fun to watch.. but once him n kge appears i jus fast forward the scenes.. maybe bcs the chemistry was so forced.. especially the scenes when lmh on the horse running w swords to save kge, major cringe moment.. like its so hard to relate a handsome king crazy in love w a not attractive girl whose personality he barely knew.. maybe if the main actress is someone cuter or at least more pleasant looking, this drama might do better slightly..

    • agreed. the romance part was so forced and quite unbelievable. KGEs not so pleasant to watch. hope they casted someone whos prettier.

  14. I read several drama blog a s the reviewer is kinda like ” not bad but not good either” while the fans are talking nonsense about theory that hasn’t been proven like they’ve been making theory since EP 1 but none of those intricate theory has been shown.
    Reminds me of moon lovers audience who make up story in between to explain the plot gaps so it can looks better for people who read it despite never have an actual scene in the drama.

    • I disagree about your Moonlover though, that’s actually very good drama and well made drama. Many would not agree, but that’s the best kdrama for me so far. The main lead Wang So was well portrayed, the cinematography was amazing, musical score and ost was topnotch. Although I would have preferred that it was purely fictional historical drama. The fantasy part of the drama was unnecessary. The girl from the future story and going back to future, should have been eliminated

      • Idk what you watch but I thought ML wasn’t that bad as story but disaster in directing, the palace is empty, the composition looks like Instagram filter, the iconic scene is copy from the original and not to mention those close up.

        It wasn’t a well made drama since they actually edit the drama mid-way to match people feedback, you just sound like a a blind fan or just never watch any other historical drama.

      • We will just agree to disagree but I say the contrary. The edit didn’t mean anything, that was probably made to cater the Chinese audience. They shouldn’t have done that. I
        The edit didnt really make any difference but they should have stayed firm on the SBS version. Instagram filter lol that’s very funny. If that is the case, what happen to other Korean productions then because most of them are inferior quality.

  15. For those saying that it would’ve been better had they casted a prettier actress. I disagree. Between the two leads, KGe is the better actress but I wouldn’t go as far as had they casted a better actor as King would it be better. A better looking actress would mean it would have a better reception. Plenty of successful dramas with less than perfect looking casts and plenty of good looking cast with lacklustre acting and their beauty can’t save the drama. Also, beauty is subjective. When you say KGE is not pretty, Chanel thinks otherwise since they picked her to represent Korea right there with supermodel Claudia Schiffer and Naomi Campbell.

  16. This a very good movie I loved it and all the stars are really good they all acted so well, the settings and everything was very good and interesting, something that you can still watch all the time.

  17. This is a very had thing to do.. “jumping” without confusing people… It’s a shame because everyone’s acting is Awesome and the “plot” is good, but it’s to much

  18. Sorry for you joane, am sure you
    Don’t possess half his quality nor talents, all you are good at is criticising poeple’s good effort? .shame on you, I will be looking out for you in a movie that’s if you ever can act??

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