K-ent Continues to Ponder Over the Exceedingly Low Ratings of MBC Fri-Sat Fantasy Drama Tomorrow with Kim Hee Sun, Ro Woon, and Lee Soo Hyuk

The MBC Fri-Sat night fantasy grim reapers suicide prevention squad drama Tomorrow is getting headlines for all the wrong reasons, and the most fascinating thing is that this drama should work but isn’t working at all to such a noticeable degree it’s making pundit ponder what went wrong. The drama started off with a very promising 7.6% ratings but then took a steep nosedive down in the second episode to 3.5% and other than going up to 5.4% in episode 3 it’s been mired in the 2%-3% ratings range. The drama hit a new low in episode 10 with 2.5% ratings. When discussing the low ratings, there hasn’t been one central reason but the feedback hits on a few repeated points – the acting with the leads not bringing the emotional connection needed, which is especially crucial for a story what is depressing as it deals with people struggling in life and seeking death, and the directing is being panned as well for not adapting the source material to life in a way that makes viewers want to keep watching. What do you guys think? I’m sad Kim Hee Sun and her queen visuals with the punk pink hair can’t make this one work.


K-ent Continues to Ponder Over the Exceedingly Low Ratings of MBC Fri-Sat Fantasy Drama Tomorrow with Kim Hee Sun, Ro Woon, and Lee Soo Hyuk — 90 Comments

  1. I actually quite enjoy this drama, KHS is bringing her A game into it but maybe the suicide theme is too heavy for korean viewers?? The cases might get easy resolutions but they are realistic situations that do touch the heart. Acting talent imo is never the main culprit of bad ratings unless it’s too appalling from every single member of the cast, since many dramas with mid to terrible acting got decent numbers and only Rowoon seems a bit out of place in this show (he wasn’t stellar in his previous drama either and it got good ratings so he’s not ratings poison).

    • His Lipstick drama wallowed in 1% ratings. And TKA was hard-carried by PEB in every way (hence her getting the deserved Baeksang nom). So maybe he IS ratings poison, after all. LOL. But his crap acting isn’t the only issue with this show. I agree with @Mimi’s points below.

      • I enjoy viewing this Kdrama “Tomorrow” it’s the waiting to see the upcoming episodes that’s cause the ratings to drop! Even though it is fantasy, there’s one thing that is factual about those who wish to prematurely end their lives, and that there are Guardians out there, be it Reapers or Angels helping them prevent such a tragedy and unnecessary loss of human life. It’s what I love about “Tomorrow”, a clear message how precious a life is! I rated a 10+! 👍🏻😉💜

    • He is rating poison because most of the scenes in King Affection is carried by the actress, plus the fact that the storyline is strong and we care for all the characters, who cares if the lipstick is pretty or not. Plus, Rowoon’s character remain the same, I dropped it after 4. Plus, the solution is not that easy, despite having realistic issues. Suicide and bulimia need proper counselling and medical attention.

      • Wow!! If a show does well then it’s all because of other actors and if it doesn’t work well with ratings then it’s entirely rowoon’s fault lol
        One side you say you hv watched only 4 episodes then how do you his character remains same. Anyways
        I agree bulimia needs medical attention but do you actually get the whole idea of the show. They are grim reapers not professional counselors or doctors. This show teaches us how your words can do magic for those who wants to end their lives.we need to understand them and should make them feel loved!! Their problems are real. This drama tells us why people feel like giving up and what role we(without being professional) can play inorder to make them feel better.
        Show is not getting ratings as people just expect a show to provide a ready made solution.
        I hv seen many people who love this show so as you said who cares if the ratings (lipstick) is pretty or not !!

    • I believe they should add some suitable music to it. Also, they should allow themselves to deviate a bit from the webtoon, and make an episode dedicated to thr two leaders previous lives connection…Like : KHS is intervening in a case but gets in a dangerous situation, fsild to save her chsrge,and is saved by thr other tram leader..the shock brings back their love memories, end og episode.Next episode they continue their eork like nothing hsppened, but they keep looking at each other, etc. T

    • The king’s affection is not that good like PEB is good but that’s all.

      It’s like saeguk drama that lack saeguk nuance but good enough as romcom.
      Rowon didn’t even help to make it better.

      • The King’s Affection was one of the best sageuk of 2021. It’s the only one that told the story about the FL until the end and didn’t switch for the ML like Red Sleeve, Lovers of the Red Sky or River Where The Moon Rises. The whole drama was about Hwi getting her identity back. The ML was a beta character, he had his part, he helped the FL. He was important too to make the FL evolving. But the story was about the FL and Park Eun-Bin was great in this role!

      • It is not that good but how come one of the actresses got selected for a Baeksang award. Rowoon is not the center of the show and the main focus of the story anyway.

      • For me, the FL’s approach to suicidal people in the first few episodes put a bitter taste in my mouth that I just couldn’t get over. That, and the “solutions” they found felt shallow. Even if they’d just put in a little aside that they were referring people to a counselor they have a deal with, I would have felt better about it.

        I don’t think the ratings are any one actor’s fault. I think it lacks a consistent tone and feels a little like forced happy endings for the people struggling with depression.

    • I agree. I look forward to each episode even though the solutions are too simplistic for such a serious mental illness. I have seen much worse acting and directing so agree most of the blame is on subject matter —similar to 39. Anyway, hope they finish well and viewers give them another chance.

  2. There are a lot of problems.
    1. It’s too simplistic, which makes me mad given the subject matter. I was done for good after the bulimia episode. The thing is if they just showed a 5 second scene at the end with the characters entering a therapist office or attending group counseling or something, it would be fine.
    2.There is no character development with the leads. Rowoon’s character does not learn.
    3. Lee Soo-hyuk shows up for one scene in a lot of the episodes.
    4. They should have structured this more like Mystic Pop Up Bar. Have the case of the week but spend time making the audience care about the characters so the audience cares about what happened in the past.

    • I’m still watching it, but you’ve hit on all the weak spots I’ve noticed. On top of that, Saturday is completely packed with dramas. The drop in ratings isn’t a surprise.

      Because there is no character development in the writing with the leads, the actors are sort of wasted, and there is a limit to how much more they can deliver than what’s given. The reapers’ stories also have little momentum. It’s like we’re 8 episodes into an 8-season long procedural from the US, but this drama needs to wrap up in 16 episodes. You can do case-of-the-week and still fit in backstories if the scenes and the suicidal-person-of-the-week’s story were more succinct.

      There are some standout episodes, like the one with the veteran and the one with the dog.

    • Yeap, this show is simplistic from A-Z with no character development from Rowoon.Plus the way they solve the problems are too easy.

  3. I really like this drama but it’s not a drama easy to watch without taking breaks. The subjects are heavy. This drama adressed how these people ended in this state, it’s not about the processus of healing. This processus is to long to be showns and it’s not the role of Grimp Reaper neither. They’re not therapists. But in the last episode about the rape, they showed how it wasn’t only the rapist who made the victim suffered but her family, friend and the justice. As an audience, it reminds us our role too.

    The trio is really good together, each member has his own role.

    • I agree. I look forward to each episode even though the solutions are too simplistic for such a serious mental illness. I have seen much worse acting and directing so agree most of the blame is on subject matter —similar to 39. Anyway, hope they finish well and viewers give them another chance.

  4. The drama is decent but its emotionally draining to watch and has simplistic take on a very complicated subject matter. The best part of this drama is Kim Hee Sun and Lee Soo Hyuk, they have so much chemistry. The writer director team should have recognized this fast enough and made changes to center the story a bit more on them. Rowoon is good but does nothing for me here. Emotionally most viewers are intrigued by Koo Ryeon and Joon Gil’s back story, every frame they share has strong tension and we barely get them together on screen….they really should have focused more on that.

  5. This is really a matter of direction. The characters are fine, the storyline is great. If Seems to me that direction is lost. A shame for the talents actors involved

    • I really love the show. I think it covers things well and the acting is wonderful. The one with the dog made us cry. Maybe in America we see things differently?

      • I couldn’t agree more with you. I’m loving this drama, and it’s hard for me to be so into a drama without cringing so hard. Perhaps because it lacks romance and I love that. I do hope they show us the lead Reapers past. I’m dying to see that. And I find Rowoon’s acting fine, trust me, I’ve seen worse.

      • I agree, I really love this show almost every episode made me cry especially with the dog and the special send away of the older guy of his past life in the Korean War. I couldn’t stop crying. ❤️

  6. The acting and cast is fine,i dont think there is any issue regarding the actors but the theme of the drama is quite complicated. It can’t keep everybody glued but I still find it good especially KHS’s acting and look.

  7. I think the show definitely lacks something. It’s frankly a bit dry and boring. I want more on the back stories of our reapers than the procedural day by day suicide cases they got going on.

    • I agree, they show us small glimpse of the reapers history and its frustrating cos you want it to move along. I did find all the suicide stories very emotional and especially the war veteran story really hurt. These issues are being highlighted well through this drama. In all the doom and gloom I do find Rawoon is the little Ray of light.

  8. I like this drama. Fave episode would be the soldier grandpa and the puppy story.
    They do tend to make the problem solved with no deep and more exolore how, it’s like bad editing.
    Thought that lee soo hyuk will show more in this but he just show up one or two time. He and KHS really intriguing and make me curious and on top of that they have the best acting in this.
    I find KRW really annoying. Never in each episode he doesn’t make me want to have him vanished and replace with LSH instead. I don’t know if it’s his character or his acting or both.
    Hope this can be fix or not since I don’t know if this drama already finished shooting.
    Last episode of rape case, yeah that’s what I thought, it’s not the SA that’s every victim felt more hurting but the blame from everyone. Why must the victim be blame? And the worst is in korean society. Them with their man superior culture. Sigh

    • It’s not KRW acting but his character, if you read the webtoon, his character more annoying rather than drama.

      But if we look the case, it’s too realistic, like the bullying case, s*xual assault case, the society is worst like you said, esp when the perpetrator only got light punishment

  9. I was very moved by each episode. In each episode it was very emotional for me. These topics should be acknowledged to people. Suicide and depression and bullying are very serious.

    • Too much negativity about this show from the viewers. How many shows slowly unfold the depth of the characters and story lines?? A lot of them are like this. You’re not giving them the same break that is given to many other shows that are the same way. To me, it’s a wait for it show just like many others.

  10. That’s crazy the show is amazing each episode gets better and better the acting is stellar! I was hoping for a second season. I especially love the chemistry between the reapers. Episode 9 was amazing

  11. I love this show. I think Rowoon does the light comedy scenes amazing. I love all the episodes. I have cried during each one. Maybe so.e viewers find the subject matter unacceptable but I find the writing and acting fantastic.

  12. I like the show. It makes sense if you are into the mediumship and afterlife stuff. Keep it coming. I will watch it.

  13. I got through 3 episodes before dropping it.And all three were a forced feeding.None of the mains come across as sincere or sympathetic.Its bad when the leads bff is the best character. Wish he was the lead. KHS is too cold to hold interest. And the wardrobe choices are laughable. The flashbacks aren’t believable either. KHS looks older than here present futurevself in the past.The acting is cold from her and shallow from her love interest. And the jumps between hard drama and comedy lands flat. Just a big downer for me.

  14. None of the recent dramas of the old guard “top” actresses have done well. Lee Young Ae, Jun Ji Hyun, Song Hye Kyo, Son Ye Jin (I’ll cut her some slack since 39 had at least ok ratings), and now add Kim Hee Sun to the pattern.

    • True especially when Song Hye Kyo and Kim Hee Sun are paired with less than stellar younger actors…On the other hand, Shin Min Na’s drama is doing well and a romcom featuring younger cast is not doing well too.

      • If by Shin Min-ah’s drama, you’re referring to Our Blues, then that’s not a fair comparison since that drama is packed to the gills with top actors like LBH, CSW, HJM, LJE and so on. So she isn’t carrying that drama like the listed actresses had to carry theirs. And HomeCha had pre-scandal KSH who was in demand at the time.

        @peeves JDY (Lost) and GHJ (Reflection of You) should be added to the list.

      • Can’t put any of the NWABU blame on the male lead when it’s SHK that was sleepwalking with her acting and the story was poorly written.

        Don’t start throwing the male co-leads under the bus when all these dramas are supposed to be these actresses’ big projects and rests on their shoulders.

        Forgot to include Go Hyun Jung to the pattern too.

      • @facts You’re right. There are so many of them I lost track.

        So that’s Jun Jihyun, Jeon Doyeon, Song Hyekyo, Lee Youngae, Go Hyunjung, and now Kim Heesun. (Removing Son Yejin now because against the rest 39 fared okay.)

        Wow, it’s a strikeout for all of the “top” older generation actresses.

      • really? kim hye soo nominated for baeksang is a strikeout for ALL of the “top” older generation actresses? lol. last I checked she’s 51 not 20.

      • @catherine sounds like peanut gall @facts @peeves sound like dum and dummer

    • Kim Hye Soo seems to be the exception. She did well in Juvenile Justice. The show was top ranked from Feb 28 to March 6 period in most watched non English shows on Netflix. On Feb 28 koala did an article on her. Knetz sang her praises in enunciation, presence and delivery while western critics were impressed by her strong performance.

      • She’s competing against 20 somethings in Baeksang best tv actress. Hope she wins it!

      • KHS did well but she also isn’t paired with young upcoming actors. That drama judge has most chemistry without having an actual couple.

      • Kim Hye Soo is a proven veteran with real talent. She doesn’t need to be coupled with any young nor older male co-stars to be popular or do well in her acting. If we take away Junho, Rowoon and NJH from LSY, PEB and KTR dramas, they won’t be able to carry their dramas alone.

      • Hyesoo known as grand slam winner of best actress. She slayed in Baeksang, Grand Bell and Blue Dragon. Achievement very hard to miss.

      • @valentine yeah you’re right. I completely forgot about Kim Hye Soo and Honey Lee like someone mentioned below. My mistake.

      • Duh. If I were an actual expert I’d be getting paid for giving out opinions.

      • Rofl, I don’t take my Internet kdrama commentary seriously so I can’t help if you’re upset about my lack of expertise 😂

        But I’m really flattered you’re paying such close attention to what I say. I’ll make sure to keep trying hard at knowing nothing.

    • Yes, Kim hye soo,the ladies from Penthouse, and also Misty.They are Baeksang winners and don’t forget Honey Lee.Don’t forget these ladies too. And yes, they are leading dramas with big ratings.

      • Yes. I have a feeling Kim Hyesoo will win this year Baeksang. Kim So Yeon another veteran actress won last year Baeksang. The older gen actresses still rule the roost in winning awards. I cannot see Han So Hee winning over Hyesoo but her actions scenes are good. Maybe LSY will come close but her performance isn’t as strong as Junho’s performance.

      • Veteran actresses in their 40/50s have been winning Baeksang tv best actress since 2015. 2017 is an exception. 2015 Song Yoon-ah, 2016 Kim Hye soo, 2017 Seo Hyun-jin, 2018 Kim Nam-joo, 2019 Yum Jung-ah, 2020 Kim Hee-ae and 2021 Kim So-yeon.

      • I think Kim Taeri has a good shot at the Baeksang. Twenty Five, Twenty One did really well and her performance was so good (barring the first two episodes). Feels like she also has good industry cred, which helps.

      • As if all veterans are the same and useless @peeves.This Peeves have no clue that not all oldies might not bag the ratings, it doesn’t mean that veterans failed to do the same. In fact, they rule Baeksangs, Daesangs and Grand Bell and Blue Dragon. The twenty somethings are only slowly catching up now. Wait is her Jang Ki Yong (Beyond his new actor award previously) and Rowoon have nothing to show.

      • @L sometimes the younger one like Jo Bo-ah who did well in MPD did not return in season 2 of Tale of Nine Tailed. They swap her out with older gen veteran Kim Soyoen from Penthouse. Interesting choice.

  15. I like this drama but i suppose that viewers aren’t in the mood for it . It’s not a light genre at all .It tackles real life issues, very harsh subjects . Some are still taboo ,… Actors are doing a good job . It’s about a squad who try to prevent suicide ,they don’t have the luxury to show their emotions they have to hide it, to bear with it . It’s like when a surgeon loses a patient on the table , he has to go on .

  16. If you ask me what I think about the show, I really like and enjoy it. It doesn’t have like cliffhanger, but it feels like loose weekly show, but I really enjoy it and look forward to new 2 episodes each week

  17. Not understanding what problems people are having with the show. I love this show. And plan to rewatch it with my daughter.

  18. I enjoy the show too, esp the veteran and puppy stories. As I see, their case every week is too realistic esp in Korea. Rather than healing, they tend to giving reason why people want to end their lives (the suicid* rate in Korea, you know) the bullying case, the s*xual assault, they’re mocking the law who give light punishment just because the perpetrator has good image and richer than victim. Maybe, viewers find it’s hard to watch too

  19. This drama is quite much better than Our Blues & My Liberation Notes. And i don’t have anything else to say.

  20. I wonder how it’s doing in Netflix. I plan to watch it, just prioritizing other dramas over it right now. Maybe the local (SK) audience are uncomfortable with the suicide storylines in each episode? I watched the first 2 eps and also think that the drama can’t find its “tone”. It’s a serious topic but there are comedic scenes, so some local audience are probably weirded out.

  21. Why the rating is very low (2.9%)? I think the story is good, I don’t know why the rating is too low for Tomorrow’s drama..Maybe not many people interested in the storyline..Or the time slot is on weekdays..But, business proposal also on weekdays but the rating is good..Kill heel also too low rating..

    • Tomorrow is on MBC’s Fri-Sat timeslot, previously occupied by Red Sleeve and Tracer. Red Sleeve was MBC’s highest-rated drama in years, and Tracer did decently at mid-high single-digit ratings. So the timeslot isn’t the issue.

    • It is an issue when there are more than 5 dramas to compete on a Saturday including King of Tears, Begin Again, Our Blues

      • Saturday nights have been overcrowded since last year. This wasn’t an issue for Red Sleeve, and not much of an issue for Tracer. Tomorrow had great premiere ratings too. They had momentum. The audience simply lost interest.

        But, it definitely doesn’t help that MBC has chosen to air another ghost/Afterlife-themed drama on Saturday too. Idk what they were thinking with that one. They could have held off on From Now, Showtime for a few more weeks.

  22. My biggest issue is that the drama’s plot structure is too centered on the individual cases. The main cast remains underexplored and underdeveloped, especially Lee Soohyuk who’s just basically in a cameo role. This makes it hard for the audience to care enough to follow this drama every week.

    This seems to be changing as of episode 10, but it’s too late. And yeah Rowoon and his character are annoying. It’s a shame because I enjoyed him in Extraordinary You.

    • Yes 💯agree with you..The plot structure is not strong..I think even you put top actress/actor in the Drama, but the storyline is not strong/good end up will produce low rating..

      I observed the trend, not all top actress/actor can bring high rating and can attract audience..just my 2 cent

  23. to be honest i am a fan of Rowoon so one of the reason why i watched this is to support him; but objectively speaking, the direction in each episode of this drama is out of the place and inconsistent. i think this is the main reason contributing to the lower ratings, and not just simply because Rowoon’s acting is bad. Rowoon’s acting isnt bad i think but Ji on definitely is better than him here😅.

    also, scenes of Kim Hee Sun and Lee Soohyuk together actually have much tension so they could have focus more on that too. im not degrading the 3 leads here but Soohyuk’s actually could have outshine Rowoon and Ji On but it was unfortunate that his screentime is too short.

    nonetheless, i like how this drama tackles the realistic mental issues and i will keep watching, just like i will keep supporting Rowoon. haha.

    fyi, this drama is in top 10 chart of netflix. while this drama is not perfect, it is not trash either 😁

    • Lee Soo-Hyuk has the easiest role. He’s just here angry and looking great. I love him on my screen but his character is nothing about the story. He’s just always angry against the deads, the ones who want to commit suicide, the Risk management team, the fact they created the Risk Management team, etc.

      Rowoon’s character is the only one who brings a breath of fresh air in the stories that are very heavy. If the show focused on LSH and KHS’s past, it would have been a very very dark drama only pain and sadness.

      • I think not necessarily entirely true. You don’t always have to be in a happy mood to show you have acting range especially with his character background into play. I just watched ep 14 and he did super well. I can feel his love and sadness for his wife when he knew that he had lost her.

  24. Someone posted that the show is simply put not connecting with the audience. I agree 100%.

    Some including me thought it was the time slot. But Red Sleeves did amazing in this slot.

    Aside from the writing and directing, I also find the actors casting important. Some may visually look perfect for the role but on the screen, how they portray their character defines the success of reaching out to their audience.

    I could name Our Blues which is in omnibus style which I wasn’t used to and yet I was immersed in the story featured in episode 1-3. The other succeeding episodes threw me off because of the story’s sudden shift to new characters. I didn’t particularly care about the teenagers but in the latest episodes I was finally connecting again with the characters involved and one scene particularly made me cry. It was a testament to how good the actor Park Ji Hwang was and how the narrative was told. In contrast I could not relate with Shin Mina’s character yet despite knowing that she is depressed and dealing with losing her son as result of divorce.

    With Tomorrow and MLN I just don’t find the cast appealing or right for their role.

  25. I don’t know why it’s getting low rating, but personally im really enjoying the drama and waiting for the 11 ep

  26. I like the drama. It’s reality in the lives of people. I think it is good for Koreans to face what causes them to be depressed resulting to suicide. Actually this drama is providing help for those who has suicide tendencies shich is quite common for Koreans as I have seen many cases in the news. I think they cannot face the truth that is why this drama is avoided. But I continue to watch not because of acting but the content itself.

  27. To be honest, I agree how the theme could get quite heavy, but it brings attention to a lot of important tenets and defects of society. Rowoon is a major representation of the viewers, which is why he is rash, he tries to help. For god’s sake, a random love story would only take away from the theme, and throw the importance of suicide prevention to the curb. I’m pretty sure someone suffering from depression and (TW) about to commit suicide would not be looking out for a random love story. This drama is targeted for such people too, to let them know that they’re heard. Grow up from the toxicity, please. Not everything is roses and sparkles. And calling Rowoon “acting poison”? How are you better than that school bully?

  28. I really like the drama and it’s different!! I love the trio!!! I wish I could see more of the leads back story with the other reaper! But I’m going to devote to this drama until the end! Excited to see what happens next!

  29. II like Tomorrow! It show the reality about suicide it comes forward to tell you about life how important life and family are all the actors I are just fine I don’t see anything wrong with the actors or the music ,my husband and I have totally enjoyed Tomorrow, hugs from Texas

  30. I usually finished anything i watch even if i find them to be not so interesting. This one i just couldnt force myself to continue watching it,i had to quit. Too boring!

  31. The key ingredient for Korean Drama that has captured the world over in missing here…sweet Romance…that keep people rooting for what is next. Rawoon is cute especially when he is playing goofy. Kim Hee Sun, strong and experienced actress. Lee Soo Hyuk the android also not bad for his character in this drama, he has chemistry with Kim Hee Sun. These 2 characters should have been developed …

  32. I guess everyone watches drama like a critics not as an audience who connects with the story. Personally I was really moved with every episode of the series. Th story that they wanted to convey in a heartwarming way, it worked for me. This show really shows as a society, how we fail and to understand some serious issues happening around us. There wasn’t a single episode where I didn’t cry. For Rowoon the character that he is playing is a goofy one, and considering how he accidentally came to this situation it is understandable for him to be like that while others being serious because they had been into this for years. However I do feel that Rowoon’s character sometimes gets a bit off but all the emotional scenes, he is good. Others characters like Kim Hee Sun, Lee Soo Hyuk are appealing to the character. Overall they complete each other with their flaw and plus points.

  33. I think this series is great. Each episode is better than the previous one. Some are so sad they made me cry. I don’t know why the ratings are low, it’s a great movie with plenty of action and I for one hope it continues to the end so I can see when he finishes his purpose and wakes up out of his coma.

  34. Does anyone see that it’s not the actors that can’t deliver here. It’s the fact that the sub-standard script writing is exactly that..not very good.

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