K-Drama Couch: “Haechi”, “Item”, “Fiery Priest” & “Light In Your Eyes” Kick Off
Transitioning to a new batch of 2019 Korean Dramas to look forward to, we got quadruple premieres and one final bow last week.
For the Monday-Tuesday slot, the competition is exciting with five networks keen to run their entries to the roster of 2019 Korean Dramas. Haechi opened on top of the rating’s race on public networks while The Crowned Clown consistently secured impressive scores.
Midweek depicts interesting race as Liver or Die slowly builds its double digit rating. The Last Empress lingers its reign approaching its finale.
Displaying an array of engaging plot, weekend dramas are perfect for viewers’ healing days as it features nicely-blended stories.
Below is the current roster of 2019 Korean Dramas currently airing.
My Lawyer, Mr. Jo 2 (KBS)
Haechi (SBS) *Premiere
Item (MBC) *Premiere
The Crowned Clown (tvN)
The Light in Your Eyes *Premiere
Liver or Die (KBS2)
The Last Empress (SBS)
Spring Turns To Spring (MBC)
Touch Your Heart (tvN)
Fiery Priest (SBS) *Premiere
Legal High (jTBC)
*A Promise to the Gods (MBC) *Finale
Romance Is A Bonus Book (tvN)
Babel (TV Chosun)
My Only One (KBS)
My Healing Love (MBC)
Read through the highlights of the dramas you might have missed.
*Covers February 11 to February 17, 2019.
*Note: weekend and daily dramas not included in Hellokpop’s weekly roundup coverage
*Disclaimer: Some K-Dramas we really do not cover. We choose our K-Drama battles wisely.
Always a done deal, Jung Il Woo, when portrayed as a prince, hooks with no return. Picking Haechi for his post-military project, the actor showed peerless performance as Prince Yeoning.
From his vicious character in Voice 2, Kwon Yul transforms to a vibrant justice-seeking character named Park Moon Soo. Meanwhile, Go Ara takes the role of the best, albeit obsessive, female investigator of Joseon’s Prosecutor office.
Coming in all directions, MBC’s latest series Item showed the main players of the story with an overview of its supernatural seasoning.
Messy was my first impression for Item. As I have a special fondness over Joo Ji Hoon, it is shaping to be another drama that I will endure for to watch out of loyalty to a K-Drama oppa.
Ha Seon and the Queen share a kiss and affirm their mutual feelings for each other. Secretary Lee reminds Ha Seon that he may be the King but the Queen is not seeing him as him because the person she sees is someone else.
Meanwhile, Dal Rae and Gab Soo, who are still worried about Ha Seon and the poster, go to the courtesan house where they see the monk and the accountant. Secretary Lee instructs Woon Shim to tell Dal Rae and Gab Soo to go back to the temple. Shin Chi Soo’s man sees them leave the courtesan house and reports to him.
The changes which Ha Seon are imposing are met with resistance. When he announces that he is opening the state exam to all regardless of their station, the palace officials oppose. However, Ha Seon impresses Secretary Lee and other palace servants when he walks on the backs of the scholars who are preventing the accountant’s promotion to Section Chief of Taxation.
The Queen finds out Ha Seon’s identity and decides to leave the palace. Ha Seon refuses to depose the Queen and promises Secretary Lee that he will bring her back to the palace. Meanwhile, the visitors come a day early and are expecting an audience with the King. But since Ha Seon is out, Secretary Lee welcomes them, much to their dismay. As Ha Seon and the Queen talk, an assassin fires an arrow. Ha Seon protects the Queen and the arrow pierces him on the back.
The Light in your Eyes *Premiere
Not being able to reach your dream can be frustrating. Hye Ja and Joon Ha both have dreams but can’t seem to make them come true. When tragedy strikes for Hye Ja, things take a turn for the worst for her. No longer looking like she used to be, Joon Ha can’t recognize her anymore.
Liver or Die
Jin Sang gets in trouble again when he attacks Mi Ryeon. Poong Sang begs him to drop the case against his brother and promises to make sure he behaves.
Finally, Jeung Sang learns that her brother has cancer. She starts to check if she can be the donor but finds out that her liver is too small.
Poong Sang received the insurance money for his surgery, but he spent it all on his family and siblings instead of his surgery. He gives money to Bok Sil, but she belittles him and lists out all his shortcomings instead.
Poong Sang gets sick and calls Boon Sil and tells her he wants to be all alone with her before he dies. Poong Sang is weeping on the phone asking for another chance to be with Boon Sil and make her happy. But Boon Sil hangs up and doesn’t pay attention to him.
Shim Ran goes to Young Pil and tells her to stay away from Wae Sang. Young Pil breaks up with Wae Sang, who goes to Shim Ran and tells her to stay away from Young Pil. Wae Sang keeps getting tempted to get into the gang, but keeps stopping himself as he remembers his siblings.
Weekly, it seems more and more problems are given to Poong Sang. Unfortunately, these problems are all brought about by his own siblings. Riddled with laziness and greed, they continue to care only about themselves. With their mom now lurking around the siblings asking them for money and forcing them into giving her whatever money they have, Poong Sang is literally at his wit’s end.
He can’t even open up to Boon Sil, who is trying to move on after the divorce. And Poong Sang seems to get sicker and sicker. The siblings continue to create trouble for him, so together with his illness, Poong Sang is still going through difficult times with no one helping him.
The Last Empress
Revelations abound the penultimate week of The Last Empress‘ run. As the villains are slowly getting cornered to pay for their sins, the heroes are stepping up to claim their redemption.
Oh Sunny stumbles on the deceased Queen Mother’s last will and letter which reveal the secret about her death.
Prince Yoon regains consciousness and works with the Emperor to trap Seo Kang Hee, the ambitious mother of Princess Ari who killed Empress So Hyun.
Ahead of the finale week, we are expecting a last hope to obliterate the rotten core of the Imperial family. Will the last Empress succeed? Will Woo Bin/Na Wang Shik still die?
Touch Your Heart
Kwon Jung Rok and Yoo In Na are getting closer the more they spend time together. Jung Rok is now treating her like a real secretary and she has been given tasks to perform. Although there are still arguments between them, they are quick to apologize once they know they do something wrong.
Yoon Seo is starting to get jealous, though she is still not admitting to that, especially when she realizes Jung Rok is much more comfortable and easy-going around Yeo Reum. She gets mad and petulant, which confuses Jung Rok, but he is learning to handle her “tantrums”.
We get to know a little bit about Yoon Seo’s scandal, and a new character has been shown. Things are definitely getting interesting in both the professional and personal relationship of the main characters and I just can’t wait for the next episodes to see how it will further develop.
Friday-Saturday/Sat Only* K-Dramas
Fiery Priest *Premiere
The Fiery Priest has delightful premiere week as it treated viewers with engaging plot and characters.
Father Kim Hae Il (Kim Nam Gil) has to leave because of a fight he had with the local gangsters. He arrives in the town of Gudan and his mentor Father Lee welcomes him. Trouble seems to follow Father Hae Il as he finds himself at odds with some of the residents, particularly those members of the local mob.
The death of Father Kim causes Hae Il to create disturbance to the town. He is determined to do whatever it takes to find the truth behind Father Kim’s death and clear his name.
Jae In wins the case for her friend, but victory is short-lived. She realizes she may have made a mistake, but all Tae Rim cares about is winning and earning money.
Their next case is for a corporation who treats their employees unfairly. The employees must wear costumes at work and are only given food according to their costumes. Initially they approached Jae In, but changed their mind after.
Tae Rim becomes the lawyer for the corporation which the employees are suing. He receives a large amount of money which makes him really happy – but disgusts Jae In. Sang Koo stands up and chooses to represent the employees against Tae Rim.
Each week, Legal High has been entertaining. Jin Goo continues to shine in his role as Tae Rim. He exceeds previous expectations in injecting hilarity in his role. This drama is something I look forward to each week.
A Promise to the Gods *Finale
It was a satisfying ending for this family drama. Na Kyung gets what she deserves and her character redemption has been done well. Though the trial has caused each character grief, a mother’s love still prevailed. After Jae Wook testifies against his wife, it goes downhill from there, for Na Kyung at least. The trial has reversed the public opinion and they are now criticizing Na Kyung. However, she continues to be combatant and refuses to yield.
An incident causes Ji Young to withdraw her custody case against Na Kyung. She regrets that her actions are making it hard for the children. Jae Wook’s parents know the reason why Ji Young filed a case so they tell Jae Wook to divorce her. Na Kyung, finally realizing her mistake, spends a day with Joon Seo. She calls Jae Wook to go to the hotel to take Joon Seo home and leaves a signed divorce papers.
She goes back to her childhood hometown and reconciles with her mother. The families of Ji Young and Jae Wook are now in good terms.
Romance Is A Bonus Book
Past the first half, romance is expected to sizzle for Eun Ho and Dan Yi. Romance Is A Bonus Book continues to be my feel-good drama each week.
Babel (covers Episodes 4-7)
All his father’s shares were transferred to Soo Ho. Evidence is uncovered that Soo Ho killed Min Ho. Soo Ho is arrested but later on tries to commit suicide by jumping out the window. He gets injured and is rushed to surgery.
The USB they found is of Min Ho sleeping with his sister-in-law, Soo Ho’s wife. He bargains with where to give her shares to the company to him in exchange for the USB.
Yoo Ra finds out that her mom sent someone to beat up Woo Hyuk. She admits to her mom she is in love with him. Her memory is refreshed when she remembers Soo Ho mention that their mom made up fake documents naming Soo Ho as his successor.
Hyun Sook is shocked when Yoo Ra tells her that her father called Woo Hyuk to rewrite his will. If anything happens to Woo Hyuk, it is either the will be gone forever, or it might turn up unexpectedly. Meanwhile, Woo Hyuk is still up in arms with his assailant. Just as the latter is about to slit his throat, he receives a call.
Woo Hyuk is then rushed to the emergency room and Jeong Won runs right over. As she sits by his bedside and caresses his head, Yoo Ra arrives and sees them both together.
Babel continues to weave painful threads around Woo Hyuk and Jeong Won. Instead of getting together, they continue to get torn apart by Min Ho’s family.