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Details

  • Drama: Emperor of the Sea
  • Country: South Korea
  • Episodes: 51
  • Aired On: Wednesday
  • Network: KBS2
  • Duration: 1 hr. 5 min.
  • Rating: Not Yet Rated

Statistics

  • Score: 7.9 (scored by 499 users)
  • Ranked: #926
  • Popularity: #2005
  • Members: 995

News & Articles

7.9
Your Rating: 0/10
Ratings: 7.9/10 from 499 users
# of Members: 995
Reviews: 4 users
Ranked #926
Popularity #2005
Members 499

Jang Bo Go was a slave from Shilla (a Korean dynasty that lasted from 57 B.C. until 935 A.D.) He was sold in China during the Tang Dynasty, where he was trained as a gladiator-slave. Through hardwork and perseverance, he made it back to Shilla and became a successful sea merchant. The sea passage at the time was plagued by pirates and Jang Bo Go went head to head with them inbattles and managed to keep the pirates at bay. This epic drama tells the story of a historical figure blending it with intrigue and battle of wit to make it into a successful drama of all times.

  • Country: South Korea
  • Type: Drama
  • Episodes: 51
  • Aired: Nov 24, 2004 - May 25, 2005
  • Aired On: Wednesday
  • Network: KBS2
  • Duration: 1 hr. 5 min.
  • Score: 7.9 (scored by 499 users)
  • Ranked: #926
  • Popularity: #2005
  • Rating: Not Yet Rated

Cast & Credits

Reviews

wonhwa
14 people found this review helpful
Mar 15, 2014
Overall 7.0
Story 6.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 6.0
Rewatch Value 5.0
In a beauty pageant, Emperor of the Sea would win hands-down. From sweeping vistas of windy cliffs to carefully composed interiors to torch-lit ships fanning out across the darkened sea, it is one of the most beautifully filmed k-dramas that I’ve watched. It also features an intriguing central triangle anchored by a break-through performance by a dynamic, dangerous Song Il-Guk. Unfortunately, the directing, acting and cinematography can’t make up for the weaknesses in the writing. As long as the screenwriters are dealing with the characters’ early lives where few historical facts are available, things clip along fairly well. The writing is solid if not exceptional, and the show’s other strengths outweigh the script’s drawbacks. However, once the characters collide with reasonably well documented historical facts in the final third of the show, things start to go awry. Character motivations change inexplicably and the narrative becomes confused and repetitive. The writers seem unable to fit the characters they’ve created to the actions that, at least according to extant sources, they actually commit. Lots of stuff, much of it bad, happens, but it often feels arbitrary, robbing the climatic scenes of the feeling of inevitability needed for maximum dramatic impact. It’s as if you’ve spent 50 hours with a set of characters only to watch them get randomly flattened by a meteor at the end. It may be spectacular but it’s not especially satisfying.

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WanderingRonin
5 people found this review helpful
May 13, 2013
Overall 8.0
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 7.0
Sea God/Emperor of the Sea is an amazing lengthy drama. We follow the life of Goong Bok (later named Jang Bo Go) who is a slave at a shipyard and wishes to escape the horrible life of slavery with his close friend Jung Nyeon who is somewhat a stereotypical side-kick character (the I'll-die-for-you-and-follow-you-wherever-you-go type). They are pleaded guilty for crimes they are innocent of, learn martial arts together, go through many near death experiences and later advance through ranks to become important people.

The story starts a little slow but is still interesting right from the first episode. Its the kind of drama you could marathon but personally I didn't because although it gets really interesting, it was never so addictive that I couldn't stop watching (guess thats a good thing? Hehe). There are many unpredictables in the drama all around. Things that you'd usually want to happen in dramas but never happen will happen here and things you'd probably not want to happen will happen as well. You might like it because it feels fresh tries to avoid the stereotypical stuff rampant in dramas but you might also detest it and curse the writers for not allowing things to go the way you want. This might especially apply in the romance department, it never really goes in the direction the romance lovers would want it to (especially the way it ends).

Some nitpicks for this drama (why it doesn't get 10/10) would be for one, I couldn't agree with actress Chae Si Ra being cast as madam Jami (the main female antagonist). According to the drama madam Jami is supposedly beautiful, seductive, intimidating and at times, scary. When the drama tries to give you any of these impressions from the actress, it just falls flat. Also, I found some of the fight scenes hilarious with all the unnecessary jumping and funny sound effects but overall they are actually very well done (also considering the year it was done, the experience the cast had at the time with fight choreography and just the overall fact that Korea has never been on par with China when it comes to martial arts in films or dramas). Anyways the hilarious parts are few. The ost in the drama are ok. Sounds like typical stuff if you're a k-drama veteran. You either like the ost or dont really care.

As a whole this drama has amazing production, excellent actors, deals heavily with themes of dirty politics, merchants & trade, pirate battles, country wars and is highly recommended to all k-drama lovers especially those who like the historical & martial arts blend and the rise of an underdog.

POSSIBLE SPOLIER BELOW:
The ending is why a lot of people might rate this drama poorly and I'd have to agree that it was a bit bad. Not anything I couldn't swallow so it didn't weigh heavily on me like the ending of Queen Seon Duk did (maybe because Ive seen worse or maybe because it seemed ridiculous). You could say the ending is similar to Bad Guy with a little extra. It sort of makes sense but if the writers wanted to, they could've made it happier.
POSSIBLE SPOLIER END

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