Most of the sageuks are set in Joseon Dynasty, but I like the look of characters in the Goryeo era more. The upcoming historical drama on MBC, The King Loves, takes the latter as its timeline. It is a fully pre-produced show and stars Im Shi Wan, Yoona and Hong Jong Hyun in the main roles. I was totally blown over by Im Shi Wan‘s performance in Misaeng back in 2014, so understated and subtle. Hence, I was looking forward to his next small screen project. I would be lying if I say that I’m excited for The King Loves. Firstly, the plot doesn’t interest me and I’m not a sageuk fan. Also, the promotional stills, teasers are underwhelming to generate any kind of interest (though some stills are beautiful). Lastly, I’m not a huge fan of any of the actors. I really liked Yoona in Prime Minister And I, where she was bubbly and charming. I have only seen Hong Jong Hyun in Dating Agency Cyrano, and have fondness for that show and its cast.
The King Loves stars Im Shi Wan as a two-faced prince — he seems righteous and virtuous in his outward appearance, but deep inside he has a hunger for power. Hong Jong Hyun plays his best friend and a man from royal family. Yoona stars as the daughter of a wealthy merchant. The drama will depict the love triangle between these three friends and how it will affect their friendship. The show is Im Shi Wan’s last project before starting his mandatory military service this July.
The supporting cast — Oh Min Suk (reuniting with Im Shi Wan after Misaeng, he played the hot senior colleague to Kang Ha Neul) will play an antagonist, a politician supporting the people who are against the king, Choo Soo Hyun (Pinocchio) stars as a gisaeng, who loves Oh Min Suk’s character. Park Hwan Hee (Descendants Of The Sun) takes up the role of Hong Jong Hyun’s sister who is in love with the prince.
The King Loves is based on a novel published in 2011. For the screen, it has been adapted by acclaimed writer Song Ji Na (Sandglass, Faith, Healer) and directed by the PD of Glamorous Temptation, Dong Yi and 7th Grade Civil Servant. It is premiering on 17 July as a follow-up drama to currently on-air thriller Lookout in the Monday-Tuesday slot.