Protect the Boss ended its run with Thursday’s finale episode, paving the way for a new Wednesday-Thursday ratings battle once the new crop moves in. The drama ended on a rather middling ratings note (14.2%, several points down from its earlier high) and from all reports, it seems that its two-episode extension sort of killed the momentum and dragged down the fun level. But after all’s said and done I’d still call it a fair success for the Boss production.
While the leads Ji Sung and Choi Kang-hee were already successful in their careers, the quirky romance between the eccentric boss and his feisty secretary has given both their images a bit of a boost. I love it when a good comedy can do that for a career; there’s nothing wrong with a little accessibility now and again, and rom-coms have a way of bringing actors closer to their fanbase.
Throughout its run, Protect the Boss has been a little overshadowed, numbers-wise, by KBS’s hit sageuk romance The Princess’s Man, which is going strong and continuing to lead the timeslot with ratings past 20%. I suspect Boss could’ve done better without such a strong competitor — but then again, that’s the whole nature of ratings battles, isn’t it? Anything would do better against a weaker opponent; the trick is maximizing what you’ve got against what the competition’s bringing.
The latest episode of Princess drew a 21.9% rating, with MBC’s Can’t Lose bringing up the rear at 6.1%. Next week, SBS brings its own sageuk to the table, with the highly anticipated Tree With Deep Roots, which comes from the producers of Queen Seon-deok and is about the life of King Se-jong.
It seems like an odd time to make the big entrance since its premiere week coincides with Princess’s Man’s finale week, but maybe they’re banking on their own big-name cast to drum up the interest. (Tree stars Han Seok-kyu, Jang Hyuk, Shin Se-kyung, and Song Joong-ki.)
Meanwhile, The Princess’s Man will be followed by the Baker King producers’ new drama Man of Honor. Then, when Can’t Lose wraps a few weeks later, it’ll replace trendy with trendy, giving us Me Too, Flower!
Phew! The drama machine, it never sleeps, apparently. Just like its actors.