The Fangirls have been enthusiastically watching The King: Eternal Monarch this last week and we are really excited to share all our thoughts about this fun, romantic, fantasy of a drama. Hopefully, we will convince our readers to watch with us!
Lee Min Ho is back!
Kmuse: Emperor Lee Gon might be my all-time favorite (and swooniest) character that Lee Min Ho has portrayed. He is an alpha character that isn’t a complete jerk to begin with. He straddles the line of strong leader and someone who truly understands those around him and cares. He doesn’t treat people as beneath him or fusses if he isn’t treated like royalty. I love him to bits!
Drama Geek: You used the pink sweater pic???? LOL. I agree with Kmuse. I’ve actually had a falling out with Lee Min Ho and it involved a different pink sweater. He is back from the military and settling nicely into this strong but kind role. It seems to be a trend that I am loving. Being a king in a world where that isn’t a thing anymore allows him to deliver the CHEESIEST lines and still make me swoon. (Oh, you did manage to get a deep v pic too, you are forgiven.)
The Maknae: I only knew Lee Min Ho from Heirs and City Hunter, so I was expecting a cocky charmer. Instead, we get a deeply intelligent charmer who oozes quiet confidence. My favorite part? When he compares our bullheaded detective’s importance to the number zero, a complicated math metaphor that shows just how vital she is.
Clkytta: I’ve been pretty vocal in the past about not being a huge Lee Min Ho fan, but oh my! He is amazing in this role! He’s not overbearing, he’s positively charming and competent and I love him.
Kdrama Jen: Lee Min Ho was my first Kdrama bias, but he seemed to lose that dazzle for me over the years. Well, I think he is dazzling once again! I love this role for him. I also think his co-stars are helping him deliver an ever better performance. We have some nice bromance and romance chemistry. I also love the way he interacts with the court lady and ambassador. I feel like he is really clicking with the rest of the cast. Oh, and I adore that he has not said goodbye to his City Hunter V-necks. Swoon!
MiataMama: In just a couple of episodes, the King (whose name shall not be uttered!) has galloped in on his white horse and swept me off my feet – SO swoony!
Not Just a Girl Friday?
Kmuse: I have been a Kim Go Eun fan for a while and she is not disappointing me in Eternal Monarch. Her character Jung Tae Eul is competent, likable, and strong-willed. Not only is she believable as a cop but she doesn’t freak out over finding a princesque hottie riding a white horse. A hottie who likes to stare at her and give her hugs. Tae Eul really knows how to keep her cool in an odd situation.
Drama Geek: Tae Eil brings a gravity to everything the King does. She responds to his cheesy proposal and other gestures of insta love the way anyone would. She thinks is a bit out of his mind, and a liar. I really love her in this role, and she just so much fun.
The Maknae: Aww, Tae Eul is my favorite kind of detective — cynical, blunt, and only ready to see what is right in front of her, but always determined to find the answers. Kim Go Eun is doing a fabulous job. I was afraid this persona would feel forced, coming from her, but she’s a natural. I love her confidence!
Kdrama Jen: I love her character. She is strong and driven, but she is also fiercely loyal. I love all of her layers and her ability to spin kick her way through any situation.
MiataMama: I love her and her no-nonsense, kick-donkey attitude!
Clkytta: I am also really enjoying her in this role. She’s self assured and not swayed by a pretty face. I’m enjoying her confusion as she is faced with a real life prince who has his eyes on her!
Double the Woo Do Hwan
Kmuse: I’m a big fan of the multiple universe trope. And in no spot is it more entertaining than seeing the two versions played by Woo Do Hwan. I can’t decide which I like better. Corea version has that gorgeous stoic secret service vibe going on. While the Republic of Korea version has that awesome Busan accent. Who can choose just one?
Drama Geek: There is no need to choose, two Do Hwans is always better than one. I find it interesting that his little boy persona was super happy and playful and his older Corea character is so stoic. Did the palace turn him into that or was there some other tragedy we haven’t seen? I also find his Korea/Busan accent super hot. I hope he continues to get more screen time and his own storyline where he isn’t always guarding or searching for the king.
The Maknae: I’m new to the Woo Do Hwan fandom, but I can totally see why my kbesties adore him. His duality is astonishing and incredible to watch. I’m thoroughly charmed.
Kdrama Jen: Mine! Woo Do Hwan captured my attention way back during Save Me and hasn’t left my menagerie list since. I love his steely-eyed side, but his goofy parallel version is charming too. We have had a bit of a behind the scenes tug-of-war amongst the fangirls over Woo Do Hwan. I guess this drama solves that issue. There are two!
MiataMama: Is it possible to have TOO many good-looking actors in one drama?! I’m falling SO hard for both versions of Do Hwan. I can’t decide what’s more swoony – the up-swept hair, or the sultry satoori? Either way, I’m most definitely a goner when he comes on screen. *grabs fan*
Clkytta: Squee! Two is way better than one. I’m loving both roles and I can’t wait to see if they are in the same space.
Great Side Characters
Kmuse: There are so many great characters that give these two worlds a sense of gravitas. It isn’t that our world is the real one and Corea is the alternate… both feel real in their own right. I have to admit that Court Lady Noh is my personal favorite. Her constant meddling in the King’s love life is adorable.
Drama Geek: Court Lady Noh is my favorite in Corea and Shin Jae in Korea. He’s actually considered one of the main cast members, and so is the Prime Minister. He has a very interesting story and I can’t wait to watch it unfold along with everything else.
The Maknae: Kim Kyung Nam! Kim Kyung Nam! Kim Kyung Nam! It’s safe to say I’m a fan. I’m also loving Court Lady Noh and her antics. I would like her to adopt me, please.
Kdrama Jen: I really think it is the supporting cast and interesting characters that have me so drawn into these worlds. I love them all. Court Lady Noh is just awesome. I love this actress. She is perfectly balancing that tough love exterior in a way that makes it extremely clear that she adores the King to pieces.
MiataMama: While I absolutely adore Court Lady Noh, I am having all the feels for Tae Eul’s popsicle-junkie partner, Shin Jae. The second lead syndrome is already creeping in. . .
Clkytta: I was totally charmed by Court Lady Noh. I wonder if she will get a talisman for me to have a successful life?
The Evil Antagonist
Kmuse: The bad guy, Prince Ye Rim, freaks me out. He is doing an amazing job of portraying a power-crazed world jumper. 100% creepy.
Drama Geek: Um… is it okay to be attracted to this evil of a person? He has a very intricate plan set in place to take over the throne and I love watching him slowly put each piece in place. He’s able to use the slowing of time to his advance and hop between the two worlds to do that.
The Maknae: Lee Lim is frightening in so many ways. He’s horrifyingly good at adapting circumstances to favor him and his view of the world. That worldview has him at the center and in power, of course. The man is a psychopath in the true sense of the word.
Kdrama Jen: Sometimes they water down the bad guys or make them so extreme that they feel cartoonish. Lee Lim is terrifying because he seems so casually violent and evil. I am so intrigued by his role in this story!
MiataMama: I think what Kmuse meant to say, was that he’s creepy, but hot, lol. He’s definitely a force to be reckoned with and I’m looking forward to the forthcoming fight for the throne.
Clkytta: He’s a good bad guy. Good enough that I’m concerned for all of our main characters. He’s not someone who lets a little murder stand in his way.
Kmuse: The OTP has such amazing chemistry and I am 100% invested in their story and romance. Surprisingly, I am also very invested in the side character story arcs as well. It is a show that has created some really memorable characters and after four episodes i am already hoping for multiple happy endings.
Drama Geek: I don’t know if it’s the fact that we’re doing a Netflix Party watch each Saturday so we are swooning together during a time when it’s easy to feel alone, or if I really love this show as much as I think I do. LOL. Either way, it’s my weekly happy place, and I am here for the kimchi swooning for the next couple of weeks.
The Maknae: I’m so invested. I’m watching this with my oldest teenage daughter, and we loveloveLOVE the characters, the plot, the two worlds, ALL OF IT. I think this one has a shot at being epic.
Kdrama Jen: I am sure I at least partly adore this show so much because of our Fangirl Netflix parties. However, I am also drawn in by the complexities of the story, the chemistry among cast members, and the promise of romantic and bromantic hijinks. It’s really working for me right now!
MiataMama: I love, love, love the chemistry between the OTP!! I’m excitedly awaiting each week’s new episodes and all the potentially swoon-worthy moments! Is it Friday yet??
Clkytta: I’m sold on the romance. There is a definite sizzle between the two and I can’t wait to see what happens next. I mean, come on, who would turn away a prince on a white horse?
Til the next drama,
Dramas With a Side of Kimchi