Highest-Rated Korean Dramas of All Time in Cable Television
Last, but certainly not least, Let’s move on to the dramas that have been aired on some of cable television networks. Just like the previous Korean dramas that were released in public broadcast, some of these dramas also received a lot of attention, although their ratings overall tend to be lower than those released on the public networks.
Why is that the case? How do dramas on cable television get fewer viewers than those in public broadcast? One of the reasons is that people mostly watched the dramas on the public channels, which have been going on for a long time. Through public channels such as SBS, KBS, and MBC, people didn’t have to use another additional device to watch a show, which means that the public broadcast shows generally have more viewers.
Meanwhile, the dramas which are released on cable television also have fewer viewers because people have to pay for cable television, such as tvN, JTBC, and OCN. Cable dramas also generally have fewer episodes, such as 10-15 episodes, as opposed to having dozens.
Here are some of the highest-rated Korean Drama from cable television!
Sky Castle (2019)
Title: Sky Castle
Genre: Drama, Satire
List of Cast
- Yum Jung-ah as Han Seo-jin
- Jung Joon-ho as Kang Joon-sang
- Kim Hye-yoon as Kang Ye-seo
- Lee Ji-won as Kang Ye-bin
- Lee Tae-ran as Lee Soo-im
- Choi Won-young as Hwang Chi-young
- Kang Chan-hee as Hwang Woo-joo
Sky Castle was one of the most highly-rated Korean dramas on cable television, ever! At first, the early episodes only gained low ratings, but over the following episodes, the rating gradually increased until Sky Castle reached the highest-ranking, having a viewership of 24.6%.
No wonder, there were a lot of people who were in love with the drama because Sky Castle presented viewers with an unusual story-line. If we commonly watch a drama with a romance story, Sky Castle was totally different. The series told us about several family’s stories, each with the different occupations, but mostly they were doctors and law lecturers. “Sky” also has its own meaning, it refers to Seoul National University, Korea University, and Yonsei University. Sky Castle was also the name one of the neighborhoods there.
The three universities are the biggest and famous universities in South Korea. In the drama Sky Castle, all of the occupants in Sky Castle were competing to get an exclusive education for their child, so that the child could enter one of the three famous universities. The story-line in Sky Castle also related to real-life in South Korea, where there are a lot of students and parents who were struggling to receive education in the privileged universities.
Reply 1988 (2016)
Title: Reply 1988
Genre: Family, Comedy, Romance
List of Cast
- Lee Hye-ri
- Park Bo-gum
- Go Kyung-po
- Ryu Jun-yeol
- Lee Dong-hwi
Reply 1988 was aired in 2016 and is another of the highest-rated dramas from cable television! The show gained a lot of attention from viewers and received the highest ratings. On average, Reply 1988 received a rating 13% on each of its episodes, and also Reply 1988 had some ratings as high as 18%. It was a new achievement since Reply 1988 was aired from a cable television which usually only received a lower rating.
What made this drama stand out so much from other cable dramas? Basically, Reply 1988 was a story about life in 1988, where it was the first time the Olympics were held in South Korea. At the time, education and sports became huge and were very much in the spotlight. Not only that, but 1988 was also the year that K-pop first started to really develop.
In Reply 1988, teenagers really cared about togetherness and friendship, such as Choi Taek (played by Park Bo-gum), Kim Jung-hwan (played by Ryu Joon-yeol), Sun Woo (played by Go Kyung-po), Sung Daek-sun (played by Lee Hye-ri), and Ryu Dong-ryong (Lee Dong-hwi). They were best friends even though each of them had very different different personalities.
With an attractive story-line and a lot of multi-talented artists, it’s no wonder that Reply 1988 was one of the highest-rated Korean dramas. If you haven’t watched yet, you should think about trying it out.
Title: The Lonely and Great God – Goblin
Genre: Fantasy, Romance, Drama
List of Cast
- Gong Yoo
- Kim Go-eun
- Lee Dong-wook
- Yoo In-na
- Yook Sung-jae
Who doesn’t know the phenomenal Korean drama Goblin? Since its first time airing, Goblin gained a lot of viewers! Moreover, Goblin got the highest ratings of a cable television drama! Goblin was one of tvN’s dramas, and scored the network significant ratings. In each of the episodes, Goblin rated at about 20% viewership, sometimes closer to 22%! The drama was a big draw for viewers, especially lovers of fantasy.
Goblin told a story about Kim Shin (played by Gong Yoo). He was a good warlord, but he was slandered until he was killed by the king’s order with his own swords. God sent him a second chance to live again, but with one punishment, the swords which were stuck in his body would continue to stick in him until he found someone who could throw the swords.
One day, there’s a girl named Ji Eun-tak. Since her childhood, Ji Eun-tak already could see ghosts. On her 18th birthday, she was hoped that she could have a spouse and a job, and it turned out her hopes was heard by Goblin. After that, they met together often, until they fell in love.
The appearances of Lee Dong-wook and Gong Yoo became one of the reasons why people loved the drama, and the story about a Goblin and a human who fell in love was also a major attraction.
Mr. Sunshine (2018)
Title: Mr. Sunshine
Genre: Historical, Romance, Melodrama
List of Cast
- Lee Byung-hun
- Kim Tae-ri
- Yoo Yeon-seok
- Kim Min-jung
- Byun Yo-han
Next, the other highest-rated drama from cable television, we have Mr. Sunshine! Usually, a drama’s first episodes have lower ratings, but not with Mr. Sunshine! Since the first episodes, Mr. Sunshine already had already 10%, and by the last episode, the series had gained a 21.8% market share.
Mr. Sunshine was a story about South Korea in the 1900s, the era when South Korea was fallen to Japan’s colonialism. Eugene Choi played by Lee Byung-hun) went to America, and then he came back to South Korea and knew about the colonialism in his country. And also, there’s Ko Ae-shin (played by Kim Tae-ri). She was an aristocrat princess, but in the night, she changed into a masked insurgent. She killed all of the people who betrayed South Korea and defended against Japan.
People loved this drama for various reasons, such as the huge stars who were involved in the drama and the fact that it was written by Kim Eun-sook, a famous scriptwriter who also wrote for Descendants of The Sun, Goblin, and Secret Garden, and also directed by Lee Eung-bok!
100 Days My Prince (2018)
Title: 100 Days My Prince
Genre: Historical, Romantic, Comedy
List of Cast
- Do Kyung-soo
- Nam Ji-hyun
- Jo Sung-ha
- Jo Han-chul
- Kim Seon-ho
- Han So-hee
100 Days My Prince also gained unusually high ratings, proven from the first episodes until the last episodes, on average it received 15.1%! 100 Days My Prince was the 4th drama from tvN to become one of the highest-rated of all time!
The drama related the story of Lee Yool / Won Deuk (played by Do Kyung-soo) and his childhood friend, Yoon Yi-seo / Hong Shim (Nam Ji-hyun). Lee Yool had already fallen in love with her, but because of the political problems in their kingdom, Lee Yool’s father ordered his subordinate to kill Yoon Yi-seo’s father, and Yoon Yi-seo’s family went into hiding and changed Yoon Yi-seo’s name into Hong Shim.
When he was an adult, Lee Yool was involved in an accident and it gave him amnesia. Lee Yool continued his life outside the kingdom, and as his destiny, he met again with his childhood friend, Hong Shim.
There are also several reasons why 100 Days My Prince got popular, such as the fact that it was an unusual twist on historical drama, and also the attractive story-line between Won Deuk and Hong Shim! Viewers also thought that their story was quite different from the others, which was made them fell in love with the drama!
Other than all of the dramas that have been discussed above, there are some other highly-rated dramas from cable television! Let’s check them out:
- Signal (12.5%)
- The Lady in Dignity (12%)
- Reply 1994 (11.5%)
- Prison Playbook (11.1%)
- The Crowded Clown (10.8%)
Well, that was all for the drama rating information! Channel Korea has introduced you to all of the famous drama that gained a lot of attention and became highly rated, whether it was from the cable television or from the public broadcast!
All of the dramas have their own kind of attractiveness, and also, the actors and actresses and the crew who were involved in them were great and already did well for their job! Since there’s a lot of great dramas, you could pick one as your favorite, and you could leave a comment in the comment section down below!