King the Land: King the Land
August 8, 2023 6:58 PM - Season 1 (Full Season) - Subscribe

Amid a tense inheritance fight, a charming heir clashes with his hardworking employee who's known for her irresistible smile — which he cannot stand.

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Collider - Why Are So Many Netflix Viewers Tuning in for ‘King the Land’?: "King the Land is the number one international show on Netflix by a metaphorical landslide. When it comes to the numbers game, there's no contest. The K-drama scored almost 5 million views in the last week alone and has spent six lucrative weeks in the Netflix Top 10, with approximately 65,100,000 total viewing hours to its name. In the land of streaming, that's tantamount to world domination. What's engaging audiences to such an extent? There's something in the air with King the Land — and its love. Described as a “classic rom-com” by its lead actors, King positions itself as a spiritual successor to K-drama rom-com classics like What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim and the Netflix original Business Proposal. Although King the Land favors the more traditional Secretary Kim model of earnest sweetness over Business Proposal's absurdly inventive highway to the same result, this is a romance meant to charm, delight, and soothe viewers’ hearts. It succeeds with a well-deployed use of archetypes, a self-aware subversion of said archetypes, and the actors' sparkling chemistry. With an impeccably glamorous atmosphere and an innate understanding of how to manipulate a K-drama's workings to perfection, King the Land fills the rom-com slot fans have been waiting for with bated breath."

Ready Steady Cut Season 1 Review – A light, refreshing romantic comedy: "A hotel concierge and rich Head Manager eventually fall in love with each other despite some outlandish initial meetings. Straight away it sounds cliché, but yet that’s exactly what King the Land seems to enjoy leaning into. For good reason too, as this romantic comedy feels refreshing, light, and entirely willing to get in amongst tropes if it benefits the on-screen ongoings. At the core of proceedings are, as briefly mentioned above, two characters. There’s Cheong Sa-rang, a bubbly, personable concierge who, backed by two supportive friends, has always dreamed of a life within the hotel industry. And then, on the other side of the coin, lies Gu Won. Uninterested in his family’s business, the rich heir spent time in the UK before making his way back to Korea, where he has been transplanted as the Head Manager of King Hotel to spite his sister, Hwa-ran. This type of opposites attract story is nothing new, but there’s something about the colorful King the Land that just seems to work."
posted by oh yeah! (3 comments total)
I thought the first two episodes were pretty cringe, and then was surprised at how much I ended up loving this! I really appreciate how Won and Sa-Rang modeled clear communication (and Won asking for consent before the first kiss was smokin' hot!) and mutual support for each other's goals.

I did think that the plot about the Arab prince was extremely cringeworthy and racist and wish that kdramaland in 2023 was better at depicting foreign cultures.
posted by TwoStride at 4:26 PM on August 9, 2023

Yeah, I liked it better once they got past the obligatory "hate at first sight due to misunderstandings" tropes and onto the actual romance. And the kiss in episode 8 was one of the best kdrama kiss scenes I've seen so far.

I'm not sure whether I'd rank this one higher or lower than 'Business Proposal'. I think it had a stronger finish? But, whatever - it was a fairy tale of a story, and I liked watching it every weekend. (Fingers crossed that 'Behind Your Touch' starting up this weekend is a satisfying replacement in the time slot.)
posted by oh yeah! at 5:19 PM on August 9, 2023

Yeah, it definitely ended up having a much different vibe from Business Proposal--that was was wacky and laugh-out-loud for me, while this one was much more about good communication and realizing what was important to them in the hospitality business.

I also forgot to mention how much I really liked the secondary romance plot between the flight attendants!
posted by TwoStride at 12:43 PM on August 10, 2023 [1 favorite]

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