MBC Sageuk The Red Sleeve Cuff with 8.8% Ratings Vaults Over SBS Competitor Now, We are Breaking Up with 7.0% in Episode 5

In the least surprising news ever, really just when and not if, episode 5 broke apart the competition in the Fri-Sat time slot between two direct prime time drama competitors. Both MBC sageuk The Red Sleeve Cuff and SBS romance Now, We are Breaking Up air at 10 pm and neither is a cable channel so it’s available to anyone who wants to watch on television but need to pick a channel. Breaking Up has been ahead in ratings since the two dramas premiered on the same day but in the beginning of this third week of airing, episodes 5 for the dramas swapped the lead position as the reviews and momentum for these two dramas in the prior week indicated would likely happen. Red Sleeve got 8.8% and Breaking Up brought in 7.0%. I can’t predict whether the pole position would be maintained permanently going forward or there may be jostling and swaps but it’s clear that Breaking Up just can’t build a ground swell of interest and positive feedback as each episode continues to get really mixed reviews and a sense that the fans aren’t building in size but those who have given up on the story are dropping off.


MBC Sageuk The Red Sleeve Cuff with 8.8% Ratings Vaults Over SBS Competitor Now, We are Breaking Up with 7.0% in Episode 5 — 61 Comments

  1. Mbc brought Nam Goong Min in the hope of reviving the channel but surprisingly One the woman who was touted as the underdog stole the spotlight.
    Now the opposite is happening. I agree Koreans love sageuk but there were of talks abt casting an idol actor for MBC’s first sageuk in like last two years. (If I am not wrong rookie historian was their last sageuk in 2019 ). Even the director said she was sceptical abt the casting at first but later on realised how good junho is .
    On top of that direct competition with Shk’s much awaited comeback . The team must have been in so much pressure. The initial ratings for red sleeve weren’t that great but word of mouth did the job.
    Anyways I am happy to see their efforts being paid off. Hope the ratings go even higher.

  2. Red sleeve continues to gain more positive hype. Yesterday,it was trending on SK twitter and junho’s acting was again a hot topic in Qoo.
    I normally don’t prefer sageuks but this one deserves all the praise. I am officially hooked. Episode 5 last part was so heavy, like we got an insight into the insecurities of both crown prince and the king.
    Lee Se Young perfectly embodied the character of a free spirited young girl who wants to make her own choices. She is smart and bold . And the chemistry between them is just fire. I really felt San’s pain when he realised that Deok Im heard those hurtful words that he said abt court ladies .
    One last thing, I just looveee the background score. The use of traditional instruments was done nicely

    • This drama is worth watching. The casting is good and I can watch it only and only for Lee Jun Ho, he is a wonderful actor, can bring life to any character he plays. Love him.

  3. Deserved! EP5 was so good. At this rate, they might hit double digits soon! But man, the consistent praise everywhere for Jun-Ho’s acting…dare I say a Baeksang nom could be on the way? Anyways, I’ll be counting the minutes to today’s episode. That bathtub scene…squee! ?

    • Junho has been the most talked about since the drama started. He’s out acting everyone and a Baeksang is definitely happening but most likely for best new actor which he will win.

      • Why would be for best new actor? It’s not like it’s his first lead drama. Chief Kim, Just Between Lovers, Confession, Wok of Love and now The Red Sleeve make him unqualified for Best New Actor. He can only compete in Best Actor.

        If he only did supporting roles prior to the The Red Sleeves then he can qualify for Best New Actor.

      • @Cassy that’s not how best new actor nomination works. If it’s the first baeksang nomination irrespective of its the first lead role it’s eligible for best new actor or actress. The term ‘new’ is used loosely.

      • Maybe you are right because Kim Soo Hyun was literally a new actor and never had a lead before Moon Embracing The Sun yet he was nominated for Best Actor and won. Dare I say Kim Soo Hyun’s performance back then was not seasoned yet but got nominated. It would be ironic if Lee Jun-ho’s seasoned and more convincing performance will only be nominated for Best New Actor.

      • I agree with @Munaf the politics of Baeksang can be strange. He deserves the best actor straight up but very likely that award will go to Lee Jung Jae because of Squid Game or if OTT isn’t nominated then Nam Goong Min, Ji Sung or Kim Nam Gil and if we talk about the nominations only 5 people can be nominated and the competition for male lead is especially tough but yes Junho deserves the nomination. I was actually thinking Junho and Wi Ha Joon have a high chance of winning best new actor. Either way this is definitely his big breakout role and he should be firmly in the A list after this drama. His acting career is just starting and he’ll only get better and better projects hopefully.

      • I wouldn’t really say that he is just starting his acting career when he debut as an actor in 2011 in film, though he only has his first drama in 2016 and he has been creating buzz since Chief Kim in 2017 which since then, he’s been working as male lead in dramas being The Red Sleeve as his 4th leading role.

        If you think about it, Kim Soo Hyun is only working on his 5th drama on lead role, Song Joong Ki only have 4 dramas on lead role & maybe a new drama in the works.

        So I don’t think he is only starting his acting career, though it’s his first acting project after being discharged from the military service.

      • @Cassy strangely kim soo Hyun has always been favoured by judges even if his performance is not that good .

        As for Junho, I am hoping he pulls a Kang Ha Neul where the judges didn’t care abt international popularity. But again , chances are bleak. It would be a shame if junho doesn’t even get nominated after giving such a commendable performance

      • @Cassy

        Kim Soo Hyun had a lead role in Dream High for which he was nominated for Baeksang Best New Actor but he didn’t win. So what are you talking about?

        And his performance in Moon-Sun was also acclaimed and raved about by critics, K-netizens, viewers and even veteran actors like Oscar-winner Youn Yuh-Jung in an interview. Just like Junho is also getting praised now. You can praise Junho all you want without putting down someone else.

      • @Munaf

        Are you sure? Cos someone like Seo Ye Ji had been in several lead roles but never got a Baeksang Best New Actress nomination. Her first and only Baeksang nomination was Best Actress for IOTNBO, not Best New Actress.

      • @cristal I didn’t criticise anyone. Dream High was an ensemble of several new actors and actresses. If you were to compare with the stage of Jun-ho’s career, it was during the Chief Kim.if he were to be nominated for Baeksang Best New Actor, it should have been for his role in Chief Kim.

      • If OTT dramas are included, next year’s best actor noms are going to be a tight race. Lot of strong contenders including Lee Jung Jae, Yoo Ah In, Gong Yoo, Kim Soo Hyun. KSH so far is amazing in One Ordinary Day.

      • I checked an actor can actually be nominated Best Actor and Best New Actor at the same time. In the KBS annual award, Lee Jun-ho was nominated for both categories but only won Excellence Best Actor award. He didn’t make it to the Baeksang that year so he missed the nomination for Best New Actor. He can only be qualified for Best Actor.

      • You can actually check what’s Baeksang Awards for rather than speculating. The awards are for Films and Television.

      • @Cassy

        Yeah an someone can be nominated for both Best New Actor/Actress and Best Actor/Actress at Baeksang. Choi Hee Seo of NWABU was nominated for both Best New Actress and Best Actress for the same movie. She lost the Best Actress but won Best New Actress. At Grand Bell the previous year, she was nominated for both categories and won both. Son Yejin in the past was nominated for Best New Actress at Blue Dragon and Baeksang for two different movies. There is no hard and fast rule as to who gets nominated for Best New Actor/Actress other than it’s the first nomination. “New” is not relative to the actor’s debut or first starring role.

      • @Popgo I agreed on your except the last part.
        This is Baeksang Awards and we are discussing about Television, drama in particular.

        First scenario, if LeeJun-ho was works as lead actors in films and have done several projects on lead role and then he has The Red Sleeve as his first major starring role in drama on television, then he can be qualified for Best New Actor.

        2nd scenario, if Lee Jun-ho have already been on major starring on several dramas but those dramas were not broadcasted on television, then he has The Red Sleeves now as his first major role in drama for MBC, then he can be qualified for Best New Actor.

        However, that is not the case. He had Chief Kim which was his chance for Baeksang Best New Actor. He was unlucky as 2016 was the year of fierce competition so he missed that chance. The same goes with Kang Ha Nuel, he missed the chance to get nominated for Best New Actor in Misaeng so he was only qualified for Best Actor in Camella Blooms. Thus this year Lee Jun-ho is only qualified for Best Actor which I dare say he has a big chance of winning considering the performance his giving in the The Red Sleeve is spectacular.

      • @Cassy, next year’s Baeksang Best Actor is Lee Jungjae’s award to lose. I will be super happy if Junho gets nominated at least, that’s already a big achievement. Hoping the drama’s ratings keep on climbing and remains buzzy until the end of its run. ??

      • Why would you think Lee Jung-jae is the default winner. I’d think Park Hae-soo performance is better in that drama.

        And sorry to say, Squid game is not a Korean Television drama.

      • Ott platform dramas are also nominated in the same category I think. Last year Ju ji hoon was nominated in the best actor category for Kingdom.
        I guess it’s almost default now
        that Lee jung jae is going to win .

      • That is good if they include OTT dramas now. But Squid Game is mainly popular outside Korea and I don’t think LJJ was praised for his performance in that drama. It didn’t even make to the Korean buzzworthy list during it’s run but only later when it become popular overseas.

        The Red Sleeve is hitting all the marks. It has audience interest and ratings keep increasing each after episode, it’s the most buzzworthy kdrama, Lee Jun-ho is on the top 10 buzzworthy actor and most importantly Lee Jun-ho specular performance has been consistently receiving praises.

        Though it’s early to say as we still have Dec21-March 2022 to go before the Baeksang closing period.

      • That’s the politics of Baeksang. I wouldn’t even be surprised if SG or its PD gets the Daesang for TV honestly, it made such a huge impact outside of South Korea. They’ll be all over the nominations I think. But let’s just wait and see I guess. I hope MBC campaigns hard for Red Sleeve.

      • This is Junho’s 4th lead role, he only can compete for best actor not best new actor if possible,even Kim Tae Ri was normanated for best actress not best new actress for her first drama lead role in Mr Sunshine.

      • @Cassy Squid Game is very much a Korean Drama and Baeksang has started including Netflix dramas as a part of its nominees since this year. Last 2 years they debated over including it but finally decided to include Netflix dramas as nominees from this year. In fact Extracurricular was nominated for Best Drama this year. Squid Game was not popular in Korea initially but after it became popular globally it became popular in Korea too and every single K celeb has talked about their obsession with the drama. It ranked no. 1 in 73 countries including South Korea. Best actor nominees will be Lee Jung Jae, Yoo Ah In, Gong Yoo, Nam Gong Min for certain. Depending on his new drama very likely Kim Nam Gil can also earn a nomination. In My Name Park Hee Seon was billed as a supporting actor not the main male lead which was Ahn Bo Young so he will be nominated under Best Supporting Actor. Lee Jung Jae has won awards internationally for his role in Squid Game and Baeksang is very very very elitist. If an actor wins an award internationally they will immediately win an award locally. The best actor belongs to Lee Jung Jae because of his status and influence thanks to Squid Game. The director will also win best director and the drama overall will win Best Drama. Award shows like Baeksang are easily predictable because they value prestige and international acclaim which Squid Game has. Junho is exceptional in Red Sleeve for certain but Yoo Ah In , Gong Yoo, Lee Jung Jae are senior actors who are beloved by the judging panel who do play favorites and because it is impossible to fault any performance by these 3 actors. If Beyond Evil and Squid Game were competing Lee Jung Jae would still have won over Shin Ha Kyung irrespective. Kang Ha Neul was a surprise win but it was most likely to cash in on his rising popularity since Hyun Bin already won the Popularity Award and Kim Nam Gil had won the Daesang at SBS already.

  4. So many big names like han hyo joo, song hye kyo, jun Ji Hyun, lee young ae, go hyun jung, Im soo jung have their on going dramas. Some of them are even coming back after a hiatus, yet it is Red Sleeve that is getting majority of the praise and buzz. Sageuks especially the traditional ones don’t get that much online buzz. Although this year we had many sageuks, the last one to top buzzworthy list was Mr. Queen. And Red sleeves topped it despite fierce competition.I wish the ratings go up just like mr. Queen.

    • Mr Queen didn’t have many competition. The only primetime drama during that time was The Uncanny Encounter. However, The Red Sleeve is competing against Happiness and NWABU on Fridays. In addition to those two dramas, The Red Sleeve is also competing with Inspector Koo, Chimera and Jirisan on Saturdays. Despite that I hope The Red Sleeve can achieve 15%.

    • Lately I don’t like romance, but after reading too many good reviews, I decided to watch Red Sleeve. And it’s indeed good. I can’t explain correctly since English is not my country’s language. All I can say is the drama is neat.
      A lot of things can make a drama has high ratings or low. Acting, directing, script, settings, even costumes and props and lets not forget PPL lol.
      Until ep 5 I can’t find any flaws in Red Sleeve. Now I have 3 ongoing dramas, Jirisan, Inspector Joy and Red Sleeve.

      • True but they didn’t manage to leave a mark among viewers. There would always be another drama overshadowing those sageuks.
        Meanwhile The red sleeve despite having fierce competition in the weekend slot is coming out as the winner.

    • The achievement is more meaningful because so many big named stars have dramas airing but Junho and Red Sleeve are still stealing the show. Actually if JJH and SHK had chosen a sageuk instead of the nonsense they picked honestly it would have been a much better comeback. Senior actresses should consider doing more sageuk dramas than these high profile modern dramas. Glad that at least KHS is going to be in a sageuk drama next year but the day JJH, SHK and SYJ comeback in a proper traditional sageuk will be legendary and worth watching.

    • In addition to Chief Kim, the drama that Lee Jun-ho which was his chance for Best New Actor, he also Just Between Lovers, Wok Of Love and Confession as the main lead and all dramas were broadcasted on Television. Having said that, I wish him the best for Best Actor nomination in the Baeksang, thus far I think he has a big chance of winning. His performance in this drama is truly spectacular, consistently spectacular.

  5. I am highly impressed with The Red Sleeve perserving in the midst of fierce competition. Lee Jun-ho’s genuinely oustanding performance deserves all the praises. Dang the boy can act.

      • Episode 5 alone can already bring him the Baeksang win. I don’t normally enjoy Saguek but I can’t deny how I am loving The Red Sleeve and find how Impressive Lee Jun-ho’s performance in this drama.

  6. I am so happy! Usually not a fan of sageuk but The Red Sleeve is so good.
    Kudos to Junho and LSY, the acting is great!
    The drama deserves its high ratings. May it continue to rise!

  7. I’m not a fan of sageuk genre but i come to this one because of the casting . Love both actors in their previous works . And , oh my god, i liked it , but ep 5 was just so good to me . I can’t explain it but the last part of EP 5 made me feel emotions that i didn’t experience since a long Time .

  8. I am not a saguek fan. Not at all. And didn’t plan to watch either dramas.

    I remember Junho in Just Between Lovers and remembered how good he was there.

    I got hooked on this drama accidentally last week. Like I didn’t know I wanted to watch it and how it filled my void for an OTP who had equal depth, intensity and chemistry.

    God those 2 are so good together.

  9. One is Singer turned actor who can really act, another one is actor turned giving up acting troupe who can’t act.
    Choice to the viewers!

  10. The Red Sleeve Cuff is doing so well and I am happy about the higher ratings. If it could get even higher the better for MBC.

    The less said about NWABU the better.

  11. NWABU getting 7% is SBS privilege. If it aired on KBS or MBC it wouldn’t get past then 5% mark. No way does it deserve to get the ratings it’s getting.

      • Yes SBS is the most watched channel and people prefer watching SBS to other channels. They did a study both last year and this year and both times SBS and TVN topped the list.

      • Then again jtbc doesn’t pick genres like jirisan but you’re right it would be much lower on jtbc.

  12. junho is so talented. i would have never known he was originally a singer with the way he delivers. he should give acting lessons to some top stars only popular for their face.

    • I read he’s conferred BA major in Acting then post graduate study major in film. Although many top stars have also earned degrees major in films and acting.

      • wow so he degrees in acting? makes me respect him even more because he takes his craft seriously unlike some who coast by on the popularity of their face.

    • And he dances and sings so well . I discovered him through this drama and found out he went viral for his fancams. He is excelling everywhere with his hardwork and talent. And his voice is damn attractive

  13. The Red Sleeve is just getting everything right so far, I’m loving it. I didn’t have high expectations for this and the promo posters were so-so to me, but lo and behold, what a pleasant surprise. Yes, Jun-ho’s acting is on point, better than some actors with more kdramas under his belt. Not awkward at all. I can’t wait for him to go back to I Live Alon after this and be congratulated for a job well done. LSY’s acting is also on point – she’s starting to be one of my fave actresses. It’s only EP5 but I feel like a lot has happened in the drama.

  14. NWBU… has side stories of other characters w/c I don’t think it’s necessary to the drama. It’s just there to lengthen the drama but would habe made the story more cohesive if the writer just focused on the back storynof the main characters

  15. I really like Junho’s acting. Every scene between the King and him are great. But I don’t really like LSY’s acting in this drama. I don’t find the ingenuous side of her character convincing, it’s a little bit too caricatural when this sageuk is a serious one.

  16. Oh wow, episode 6 got 9.4%! Viewers are truly loving the drama and more people are tuning in. Yes congratulations to the cast and crew of RSC.

  17. Ok first things first ,Red sleeve is a far superior drama so the there is nothing wrong with now we are breaking up ,it’s just that better drama gets all the accolades and I am all for it

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