Drama Casting & News
Woman in the Sun rounds out the three-way ratings feud
by | May 23, 2008 | 36 Comments

Another Wednesday-Thursday drama (ratings) battle is shaping up, with three new dramas squaring off against each other. SBS’s Iljmae and MBC’s Spotlight have just started airing, and now KBS’s Woman in the Sun is readying to join them. The series stars Kim Ji Soo in her television return after four years away, as well as Lee Hana, Han Jae Seok and Jung Kyeo Woon.

The drama held its press conference on May 23 in the 63 Building in Seoul, where the stars expressed their hopes for a successful run. Showing a particular preoccupation with ratings, Han Jae Seok mentioned his disappointment over his previous series, the high-budget flop Lobbyist: “The viewership ratings were lower than expected. The audience’s opinion and response didn’t meet expectations. To be honest, I was upset.” He was so worried about the ratings issue that he looked up his competition’s ratings numbers online to compare, but hopes that the vastly different genres will help viewers find his.

Meanwhile, Lee Hana goes up against her former castmate (having played Sohn Ye Jin’s younger sister in the drama Alone in Love and now competing head-to-head with Sohn’s Spotlight), saying lightly, “I’m sorry to her, but I hope our drama does better.”

In Woman in the Sun, described as a “story of love and hatred” centering around a “birth secret” and two half-sisters, Kim Ji Soo plays an ambitious news announcer who abandoned her half-sister, played by Lee Hana, in her childhood. Now famous and successful, her love interest is played by Han Jae Seok, a top mergers and acquisitions specialist. Lee Hana is the younger sister who grew up in foster care after being abandoned by her older sister in Seoul Station, who determines to get her revenge.

Well, I’ll catch this to see if it’s any good, but I’m keeping expectations (very, very) low. With Spotlight‘s dullness and Iljimae‘s utter absurdity, maybe Wednesdays and Thursdays will be quiet this season?


Kim Yeon Woo – “사랑한다는 흔한 말” (These ordinary words, I love you) [ Download ]

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36 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. belleza

    Really tough call, this one — apparently Uhm Tae Woong was rumoured for HJK’s part, implying that maybe this script has more to offer. And you would like to believe that Kim Ji Soo wouldn’t return to drama unless she really believed in the story. Overall maybe not a high-wattage cast, but very talented nonetheless.

    FWIW, I hope you really like Lee Ha Na. Whether she plays comedy or drama, she’s a real breath of fresh air. About the closest thing to Lee Na Young in years.

  2. Gaijin

    Dude has some funky shoes….. is this a “period drama”….. like in the 50’s or 60’s….. and don’t get me started on those pants…… 😉

  3. Grace

    WOW, Lee Hana looks so different here! I did not recognize her at all. I loved her in “Alone in Love” 🙂

  4. Niki

    I have to say I hope we aren’t supposed to feel sorry for Kim Ji Soo’s character. She, at eight or so, leaves a baby at a train station, because she thinks her parents love the baby more. Then, grows up sucussful, never telling anyone what happened to the baby. This is a character who puts her parents threw grief for years, and yet she’s the hero of the piece?

  5. all4movies


    Please elaborate on why you think Iljimae is “utter absurdity” because I was hoping to watch this one.

  6. Marzy

    sarah, i hope ull give spotlight a chance. cause just saw ep 4 and i was a whopper. it builds up from the 1st and 2nd eps. i cant wait for next week.
    as for iljimae, im not catching that. maybe when i got nothing to watch. not exactly a junki fan. waiting for LSG’s if it will push through.
    i think ill try this one, i like lee hana plus the guy from happy woman is there too. he’s cute. lol.

  7. 피곤해

    “Iljimae” is utter crap. I honestly thought it would be kinda cool like “Hong Gildong”, but it’s like watching all the bad things about that for over an hour. Let’s face it, the only draw is Lee Junki (who I still don’t understand why is so damn popular) and it’ll top Wed/Thur ratings because of him only.

    I really want to like “Spotlight” because it’s got that “Air City” vibe for me, but the current plot is dragging on FOREVER. Are five (six? Dear Lord it better not be) episodes about Jang Jingyu or whatshisname necessary?! And where’s the romance?! sheesh!

    So “Woman of the Sun” better be good. But I also have low expectations for it too.
    ugh why can’t it be Fall already =___=

  8. Pully

    Is Iljimae that bad ? I just downloaded 1st episode but waiting for the sub.

    “Woman of the Sun” ? I never heard of it, but the story sounds cliche’ to me.

  9. Maggie

    i dont think iljimae’s that bad ^^ i already watch 2 episodes and it’s really touching and made me cry coz their childhood scene is sooo sad…TT__TT but when they grew up, junki’s scene is damn funny !!! he’s too adorable haha

    and from many news that I read, many netizens praise iljimae too ^^

  10. 10 ovette

    i also have low expectations for this..
    looks like Kim Ji Soo’s character would be quite similar to the somewhat evil-ish character of Kim Myung Min in White Tower which makes me anticipate the first episode.

  11. 11 leanie

    lol i know this is totally unrelated to the blog.. but javabeans, any thoughts on the first ep of iljimae? 😉

  12. 12 lyd

    the plot of this drama does not sound too good, but it might be better than the competition. but i will check this out because of Lee Ha Na and the script writer. i just wish the male leads were more known, i’ve never heard of them before this.

  13. 13 marcel

    @ belleza,

    i adooore lee hana to pieces.. she’s classy, she’s smart, she’s spunky.. plus lovely & highly musically & dramatically talented.. she does bear a strong resemblance to lee na young 😉 another gorgeous gal!

    @ gaijin,

    the guy looks like a cross-hybrid disco cowboy astronaut..saturday night fever meets john wayne meets man on the moon.. not sure what the stylists were smokin’ when they dressed him in that getup o_O

  14. 14 Mountain Dew

    Dude, seriously, this better be something worth watching. If I have to watch another Iljimae or Spotlight episode…God knows what I’ll do. I can’t go another round of that load of junk.

    But then again…..Woman of the Sun doesn’t sound that interesting at all…..what’s happening to the K-drama world?!? Why are there so many floppies!!!!

  15. 15 Annie

    I’m not drawn to the casting at all. But the plot sounds rather interesting.

  16. 16 vertigo

    aww Lee Ha Na is back!
    i think shes one of my fave actresses out there..
    Not the best, but she has this inexplicable charisma, that makes
    the characters sshe portrays very daring…my favourite was in the
    Son Ye Jin drama..she was wonderful

  17. 17 Elaine

    Watched two episodes of WOTS and I unexpectedly enjoyed it alot (:
    Hoping to get a review from you, if you’re planning to watch it!

  18. 18 jamie

    Him jisu u’re just too beautiful…women in the sun is excellent..

  19. 19 Emma C

    I saw one of the earlier episodes and thought that the storyline was ‘different’. I didn’t watch it for a while and just saw the episode where Lee Hana’s memory starts to come back. I don’t know if I’ll continue to watch it. 🙁 There’s the over-dramatic and poor acting (I really can’t stand the way Lee Hana acts! Very very akward!), terrible dialogs, and the way the story is played out is too predictible. I don’t mind the predicible storyline (like Coffee Prince had a predictible stroyline but had superb acting and dialogs! LOVED IT!) but if the other two things (acting and dialogs) are also bad then I’m definately turned off by it.

  20. 20 Miles

    I love “Women in the Sun”, but there were episodes that I missed on purpose ‘coz it was too much for me to handle. I don’t like it when things are so complicated and dark. I like characters that I LOVE to hate, like Kim Ji Soo’s character. The end was satisfactory and I love the song the sisters sang. Anybody knows the title of that song?

  21. 21 Iamson

    these two Korean women are so beautiful. but then, most Korean women are beautiful. in 3 1/2 years through their tv dramas, i have come to admire Korean women, Korean men (especially when the president of Korea and a group of Koreans, cried openly in a foreign airport years ago), Korean dramas and generally the culture itself.

    as far as i can see for the last few years, Korean women are the most beautiful women on the planet. and the men seems to be the most manly. Sandara Park, based outside of Korea, has one of the most beautiful faces. i am not a Korean, though i wish i could be a son. but one thing i need to advise Korean film makers and Koreans in general. keep that wholesome image i see on your films (seems deteriorating as time passes by) like respect for the parents and the elders and the authority and don’t follow the rest of the world where women are treated like cheap meat. it is that wholesomeness in your films that people come to admire you. keep your women pure as always.

    • 21.1 Sweet babe

      U must be deluded saying such trash that Korean women are the most beautiful in the world. Most of the actresses have done plastic surgery, that’s why they look so fake and plastic. I don’t have anything against them and I love Koreanfilms but the truth must be told. Lighting, make up and other factors contribute in making dem look pretty on screen.
      If u want real, natural beauty, check out Indian actresses.
      And as for the men being the most manly, dats a laugh- all we see are pretty, effeminate looking boys on screen who look more like girls than men. Give me a real man any day than a pretty boy who cares more about his looks than a girl.

  22. 22 Anonymous


  23. 23 Anonymous


  24. 24 crazy

    it’s a crazy movie, and sad story

  25. 25 popcornchicken

    Very good drama, have just finished watching the whole series. Love the plot and most of all, the drama isn’t draggy unlike most korean dramas. Not regretting watching it.

  26. 26 Vina

    could someone please explain the ending of Women of the Sun. Did Jung Woon also die in the end?

  27. 27 sara

    its a wonderfull drama thanks to kim ji soo , she is so pretty and also she playing very well. kim ji soo you are REALLY THE BEST!!!!!

  28. 28 ayoub

    the film is very nice

  29. 29 Hanni

    this series makes me weep, i can’t hate them.. just luv them.

    can you describe the ending…? what do you think..?

  30. 30 ImaD

    The best drama i’ve watched in my life

  31. 31 betty

    i like the drama a lot. but i don’t like the way u use those black guys as a robber.may be it make Koreans to think Africans are dangers,but i think most of Koreans don’t know Africans(Ethiopians) who die for there liberty.why not you give them even little other parts .i also do not see other faces in your drama why is that.

  32. 32 lovelife

    i have been watching this drama in KBS… and i’ve been swearing a lot while watching this. not my cup of tea i guess. everytime a new episode comes lo and behold i can guess the coming events… which is not pretty good. still if you like heart aching antagonist pitying drama, this could come just right for you 🙂

    ugh …

  33. 33 taneh

    kim ji soo’s acting is under skin ,bravo!

  34. 34 miracle getu

    i love this drama by using this situation i want to ask all of you what if your life was like shin doyoung
    mine is like that what did i have to do
    my life is distroyed my real parents treat me like stranger they even dont give me piece of love what did i have to do please help me please please

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