Golden Empire

Golden Empire (2013)

7.3
Your Rating:
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 449 users
Reviews: 9 users

A power struggle between three people in one chaebol empire for 20 years from the turbulent era of Korean finance in the early 1990s to 2010s. Jang Tae Joo is a young man who fights to build up his so-called empire of gold from nothing after his father dies. In order to achieve his dream he marries Choi Seo Yoon, the chaebol heiress of Sung Jin Group. Sung Jin Group battle over read moreensures between Jang Tae Joo, Choi Seo Yoon and her older cousin Choi Min Jae.

  • Native title:

    황금의 제국
  • Also Known as:

    Empire Of Gold ; Hwanggeumui Jegoog

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Cheer
45 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
Sep 18, 2013
  • Overall 9.0
  • Story 10
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 9.0
  • Rewatch Value 5.0
This drama was a weekly dose set to satisfy my hunger for sharp screenwriting, cliché-free storyline, intense events, dazzling characterization and top-notch acting.

Golden Empire is simply gold but that gold isn’t for everyone to watch and I can fully understand why the audience would avoid a business/romance-free drama. Has it been a time when you were watching an excellent drama but you find out that most people are ignoring it and read more the internet buzz is almost inexistent? That’s my case with Empire of Gold.

If you want to watch this, forget about the synopsis; it’s misleading and makes you expect things you shouldn’t. This is a story about power struggle for 20 years in order to rule the golden empire which is Sung Jin Group that’s owned by the Choi family. The three main warriors are: Choi Seo Yeon; the daughter of Choi Dung Sung who’s the owner of the group, her cousin Choi Min Jae; the son of Choi Dung Jin who’s the co-founder of the group and Jang Tae Joo who built himself from scratch and came to win the Empire of gold.

Out of all currently airing Korean dramas I was watching synchronously with Golden Empire; this one managed to to snatch the top spot and remain as my top obsession all the way through; this drama excels in screenwriting and witty dialogues, this is a drama where billions were flying on the dining table and a cup of tea can decide someone’s destiny: Yes, I had to mention that because once the table is set for a cup of tea, you should know that you will be blown away by the characters’ dialogue. What I like the most about their dialogues are the metaphors, the quotes and the historical events that they use to deliver their ideas whether directly or indirectly that’s why I always thought that this drama’s writers are geniuses; not only they wrote amusing discussions but they also provided us intense thrilling events and intriguing twists without any drop of slow moments that can reduce our intention: loud claps for the most brilliant writers in Kdrama's history.

The acting department was simultaneously stunning; Go Soo, Lee Yo Won and Son Hyun Joo are astonishing actors that I can’t imagine this drama without them. Jang Tae Joo, Choi Seo Yeon and Choi Min Jae are equally alluring, smart and impressive; just get ready to cheer for them, hate them, love them, distrust them, pity them, curse them but the most important thing is that you will feel them. They led this drama and made the excitement within its storyline through the alliances, the schemes and the conspiracies that were masterminded by those three or the rest of the cast who were equally convincing as actors and highly appreciated as characters.

In a line, I want to give credit for the music that suited this drama’s business theme in a magnificent way.

The rewatch value is low because such an intense drama will lose its twists and the factor of surprise if it's rewatched.

To make the long story short; this drama isn’t directed for everyone but one thing’s for sure, it’s unlike other same-plot dramas since there are no cheesy moments, weak characters or shallow acting. This is a high class screenwriting that’s very rare to find in Korean or Asian dramas in general.
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KiaSoul
18 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
Apr 1, 2014
  • Overall 10
  • Story 10
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 9.0
  • Rewatch Value 9.0
If you like poker and classical allusions (mostly Chinese), _Golden Empire_ will have you thoroughly engrossed. It had me (thoroughly engrossed) though I don’t play poker and I recognized a mere fraction of the classical allusions. I’ll admit that Lee Yo-won’s prettiness and icy demeanor had me riveted, but equally riveting were the depictions of cutthroat ruthlessness that are at the heart of the drama.

Early on, there are two scenes that read more portend what’s to come. One is when Sungjin’s chairman apologizes for involving his daughter in the family business and its innate “dirtiness,” which he had hoped to shield her from; and the other is a noodle peddler’s son, now a high-stakes broker, proclaiming that business is “war.” From then on, moral scruples are subordinated to vindictiveness and revenge, putting everything, including blackmail and the covering up of a murder, on the table, as viable options.

With no heroes per se, I found myself pulling for the three characters who want nothing more to do with power and prestige (to the extent they try to sabotage their nearest and dearest who are busy selling their souls for the sake of the “Golden Empire”) to be the ones who resolve the drama’s ending. It was wishful thinking, as there has to be a winner and a loser(s), and as it would’ve been implausible for a truce to be called and the winner declared in the spirit of fair play after all the no-holds-barred beat-down of one another. And the writers don’t disappoint. To quote Adam von Librikov “Death is a matter of style.” And death, stylish death, is the note which the drama’s most heroic character goes out on while its most attractive is left to ponder the unbearable cost of winning.
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Make a Recommendation More recs (1)Recommendations

This drama was written by Park Kyung-soo, the writer of Punch and Golden empire
Several actors of The Chaser are back in parts written by the same writer but in totally different positions and dynamics ..
Same tightly written and well-structured storyline, solid direction, and great cast members' acting skills
Recommended by FadouBebo
Same writer as Punch and The Chaser! This writer is phenomenal and very good at weaving a story from beginning to end!
Recommended by NewKDramaAddict

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Comments (37)

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  • Reply
    MrBanana 13 days ago

    Excellent writing, highly underrated! At least 8.8!

  • Reply
    PrettyCarEye 28 days ago

    Only on MDL would a masterpiece of a drama like Golden Empire be rated 7.3. Smfh. This site is so ridiculous!

  • Reply
    anopinion Jul 13, 2017 - edited

    This drama is severely underrated here. How typical MDL.

  • Reply
    ACC Mar 12, 2017 - edited
    Reveal Spoiler »
    • Reply
      ACC 26 days ago - edited
      Reveal Spoiler »
    • Reply
      PrettyCarEye 21 days ago

      Glad to hear it, but too bad you were spoiled with all the details.
      I know for me not knowing all the details made me stay up until the middle of the night because I just had to know what happened next. Anyway, the fact that you were still able to enjoy the drama despite being spoiled is a testament to the solid writing here. I can't wait to watch The Chaser & Punch which are also written by the same writer. Have you seen any of these?
      By the way, what did you rate GE? I gave it a 9.5 ... I took off a half point because of the ending.

    • Reply
      ACC 21 days ago

      Sometimes spoilers are a good thing though, it just depends on the feeling you have while watching. Anyway, it was indeed a good scenario that was well put together, and that we do not have the habit to see.
      I didn't watch "추적자 THE CHASER" nor "Punch", be they seem interesting. I'm gonna have to put them on my list. Thank you very much for suggesting them to me!!
      Concerning "황금의 제국 - Golden Empire", I've rated it a 7.5, I did take off 3 points, because of the first 4 episodes that I'll never rewatch again, even if I were to watch the drama again. And I also did take off, a half point for the ending, which was a little frustrating.
      I'm always quite harsh when it comes to give rating, so when a drama really displeases me, I'll only rate it if I'm able to finish it, because it wouldn't be fair otherwise.

    • Reply
      PrettyCarEye 21 days ago
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  • Reply
    jxsilicon9 Aug 11, 2016

    Worth watching?

  • Reply
    Gintoki Jun 18, 2016 - edited
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    • Reply
      PrettyCarEye 21 days ago
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    3ngin33r Apr 16, 2016

    The dialogues were spectacular and the whole drama kept reminding me of Nietzsche quote

  • Reply
    Marooya Mar 3, 2016

    Great drama, excellent dialogues, flawless performance and cliche-free story :)

  • Reply
    Sharn Oct 16, 2015

    I confess that I actually got into this drama because I wanted to see how they got married despite of the given circumstances (wasn't disappointed). Part of me really like the ending and the other part of me hate it. Overall, a quite good drama if you are bored with romcom, melodrama, or family drama.

    My two cent: the character that I hate most is the 'sunbae', the actress gave me the feeling that she has a lot of plastic surgery except her nose, and her high pitch tone is sooo annoying sometimes! I would say if this is a melodrama romance drama, there's no reason for her to exist. The story will be based on Tae Joo and Seo Yoon both finding the meaning of love in the middle of power and money struggling. Haha I should be a writer.

  • Reply
    Drama_Lover Jul 5, 2015 - edited
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  • Reply
    Drama_Lover Jul 5, 2015 - edited

    I felt like this drama was dragging a lot. I don't think I can finish watching this drama. I'm stopping at ep 8. I skipped to the last ep of this drama and I loved the ending although it's kind of sad in my opinion but I guess that person deserved it...

    • Reply
      BrightestStar Oct 3, 2015

      It's not an easy watch, overwhelming and needs a lot of attention, so it took me a long time to finish it, but oh boy I don't regret watching any minute of it. Writing like that doesn't come along often, specially from South Korea!

  • Reply
    sanadonghae Mar 6, 2015

    I really love the writer I loved all the 3 dramas i watched for him the chaser , golden empire and punch I cant wait for his next project *_*

  • Reply
    sanadonghae Mar 6, 2015 - edited

    why this drama has bad ratings oO crazy I gave it 10 I would love a second season or another story in this type

    • Reply
      Kizzofdeath Oct 19, 2016

      omg then Pass :(

    • Reply
      BrightestStar Oct 19, 2016

      but it's what makes it good. Those people decent to the deepest of hell, how would they know love?

    • Reply
      Kizzofdeath Oct 19, 2016

      i prepared more Romance than Revenge in drama.. b'coz when i watching drama with out romance i fell asleep while watching seriously....

    • Reply
      BrightestStar Oct 19, 2016

      The drama isn't for all that's for sure. Romance make me sleep :P This one kept me on the edge of my seat the seat the whole time.

    • Reply
      Kizzofdeath Oct 20, 2016

      ow maybe u convinced me to watch this one .. ill try Thanks,, for keep chatting on me :)

  • Reply
    winnie Aug 15, 2014 - edited
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    sunflower63 Feb 18, 2014 - edited

    What an amazing drama. I had never seen such a tough portrait about greed for power and money before and I have to say that it was a very interesting watch. I thought the plot was very well written with many twists and turns and everything achieved only with dialogues and strategies.It was one of the rare times in which I truly hated the main lead (and was happy with the ending) although also the other two leads were not particularly likeable. This proves that the acting here was truly brilliant. I understand now why some state that this was an underrated drama and I totally agree with them.

Details

  • Country:

    South Korea
  • Type:

    Drama
  • Episodes:

    24
  • Aired:

    Jul 1, 2013 to Sep 17, 2013
  • Aired On:

    Monday, Tuesday
  • Network:

    SBS
  • Duration:

    1 hr. 3 min.

Statistics

  • Score:

    7.3 (scored by 449 users)
  • Ranked:

    #1735
  • Popularity:

    #1309

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