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The King: Eternal Monarch: Overview, Cast, 4 Fun Facts & More

Overview of The King: Eternal Monarch

Starring Lee Min-ho, Kim Go-eun, Woo Do-hwan, Kim Kyung-nam, Jung Eun-chae, and Lee Jung-jin, ‘The King: Eternal Monarch’ is a romantic fantasy South Korean television series aired in 2020. The series had its international debut on SBS TV and Netflix on April 17, 2020, with writing by Kim Eun-sook and production by Hwa&Dam Pictures and its parent company Studio Dragon.

The series, which is set in two parallel universes, centres on Emperor Lee-gon of the Kingdom of Corea, who discovers a door that his half-uncle Lee-lim opened that leads to a world where the Republic of Korea has taken the place of the Kingdom. Lee-gon then sets out to stop Lee-lim’s atrocities and recover the other half of Manpasikjeok, which was used as a portal between the two worlds.

Profile

  • Drama – ‘The King: Eternal Monarch’
  • Director – Baek Sang-hoon and Jung Ji-hyun
  • Writer – Kim Eun-sook
  • Network – SBS
  • Episodes – 16
  • Release Date – April 17-June 12, 2020
  • Language – Korean
  • Country – South Korea

Cast

Synopsis

The Kingdom of Corea experiences tremendous upheaval in 1994. The King’s son, Lee-gon is stabbed in the neck. He survives but his father is murdered by his uncle, Lee-lim. The Manpasikjeok, a fabled flute with magical abilities, is sought for by the homicidal Lee-lim. Lee-lim flees after a shadowy man with a gun emerges and only manages to take half of the now-broken flute with him. The young Lee-gon is clinging to a police badge that he snatched from an enigmatic individual, who saved his life.

The Kingdom of Corea appoints Lee-gon as its new monarch the following day. King Lee-gon is the Kingdom of Corea’s wise ruler 25 years later, in the autumn of 2019. He is still troubled by what happened to him as a child and the mystery surrounding the police badge that his saviour left him.

The police badge which he held was issued on November 11, 2019 for Lieutenant Jeong Tae-eul in the Republic of Korea. Detective Jeong Tae-eul works for the Seoul-jongo Police Station’s Violent Crimes Division. To bring down the owner of an illicit online gambling enterprise, she is operating undercover.

King Lee-gon of the Kingdom of Corea is pursuing a man wearing a rabbit costume and carrying a clock. King Lee-gon has a hunch that the person in the rabbit costume could be his enigmatic saviour from 25 years prior. King Lee-gon mounts Maximus, his beautiful white horse, and rides into the woods. As soon as he leaves the Kingdom of Corea, Lee-gon enters the Republic of Korea, where he finally encounters Detective Jeong Tae-eul.

Three Important Aspects to be Found in the Final Episodes

In the drama ‘The King: Eternal Monarch’, played by Lee Min-ho and Kim Go-eun, respectively, Emperor Lee-gon and detective Jung Tae-eul live in alternate worlds where Korea is both a constitutional monarchy and a republic.

kdramalive image of "The King: Eternal Monarch"
Lee Min-ho as Lee Gon and Kim Go-eun as Jung Tae-eul/Luna in “The King: Eternal Monarch” (2020). Credit: Pinterest

In episode 13, Lee-gon suspected that there must be a way to travel through time and planned to stop Lee-lim from taking one half of the legendary flute of the Silla Dynasty on the night of treason. However, before he could leave for the Korean Empire, Lee-gon was attacked by Luna, who looked just like Jung Tae-eul, and collapsed. Then, Lee-gon, who saw himself wearing his black clothes and Luna with Jung Tae-eul’s new ID card, was shocked to realize that the person who saved him on the night of treason was his future self.

As the drama’s plot starts to come to a close, keep an eye out for these three things!

Luna’s Threat: “If you meet me now, you’ll die.”

Luna, a criminal in the Korean Empire who shares the same look as Jung Tae-eul but leads a very different life, has been alone her entire life and has nothing to call her own. Inspired by Lee-lim’s display of a family photo and an ID card, Luna proposed assuming Jung Tae-eul’s identity. Luna deceived everyone by utilising Jung Tae-eul’s residence, identity documents, and telephone. She also gave Kang Shin-jae a kiss while posing as Jung Tae-eul, which caused Kang Shin-jae to become even more perplexed.

When Jung Tae-eul learned of Luna’s mischief in the present-day republic, she called the girl—who was still using Jung Tae-eul’s phone—and demanded that they meet up right away. After that, Luna said, “You’re in trouble. You will perish if you encounter me right now. Thank goodness we won’t be interacting”.

The final scene of episode 13 included Luna attempting to poison Lee-gon, which has fans wondering how she will harm Jung Tae-eul.

Kang Shin-jae at Yang Sun Care Center

Koo Eun-ah, a lookalike of the Korean Empire’s prime minister Koo Seo-ryeong, was spotted by Jung Tae-eul, who then started searching for her. After spotting Koo Seo-ryeong wearing the same sign as Lee-gon on the day of the thunderstorms, Jung Tae-eul, a captured prisoner who was residing in the imperial palace, revealed that Prime Minister Koo can travel between universes.

When Jung Tae-eul returned to present-day Korea, she learned of the disappearance of Koo Eun-ah and started looking into the dubious Yang Sun Care Center. A care centre employee was astonished to see Kang Shin-jae, who was with Jung Tae-eul, and the reaction produced an odd mood.

kdramalive image of "The King: Eternal Monarch"
Kim Kyung-nam as Kang Shin-jae in “The King: Eternal Monarch” (2020). Credit: Pinterest

The care center workers began to act as if they had received an order, and the Yang Sun Care Center is believed to be the base of Lee-lim’s remnants in modern-day Korea after Goo Eun-ah was discovered to be dead. Meanwhile, Kang Shin-jae’s surprise at seeing the bed in Room 101, the room without a name, has raised suspicions.

Lee Lim’s Realization

Lee-gon came to the conclusion that he had genuinely saved himself on the night of treachery. At the same moment, Lee-lim learned that the Lee-gon from the future had indeed saved the 8-year-old Lee-gon.

Lee-gon was astonished by this information, but Lee-lim said, “It was you! You were the one who saved yourself!”. Viewers believe Lee-lim will put his life in danger to prevent Lee-gon from going back to his past. Will Lee-lim revisit the treasonous night of 25 years ago? Or is he planning to kidnap Lee-gon’s second flute, the manpashikjeok?

The last three episodes depict the rage with the furious battle between Lee-gon and Lee-lim, who want to take back the flute after the person who protected young Lee-gon on the night of treason was revealed, according to the production company Hwa&Dam Pictures.

The King: Eternal Monarch Ending Explained

Beginning with a text from Tae-eul’s father, the final episode of ‘The King: Eternal Monarch’ features Luna. Shin-jae, on the other hand, is distraught at having abandoned Tae-eul. At the portal, Tae-eul is standing alongside Lee-lim with her gun pointed at the traitor. The next scene in the episode is a flashback to 1994 in the Kingdom of Corea. Lee-gon commands them to murder Lee-lim at all costs after Jo-yeong and he breaks into the palace. He is reminded by Jo-yeong that in order to defy the King’s orders, he must protect the King.

Lee-lim is informed by Tae-eul that she will wait for Lee-gon to complete his mission before dealing with Lee-lim. She is then reminded by Lee-lim that if Lee-gon succeeds, she will no longer have any memories of the King. Despite being aware of this, Tae-eul is willing to give up everything to succeed.

kdramalive image of "The King: Eternal Monarch"
Lee Jung-jin as Lee Lim in “The King: Eternal Monarch” (2020). Credit: Pinterest

Rewinding to 1994, Lee-lim orders his soldiers to murder young Lee-gon. When the older Lee-gon and Jo-yeong simultaneously enter the palace, they kill the men. When Lee-lim takes up the Manpasikjeok, Lee-gon’s share vanishes along with Tae-eul’s. Lee-lim, in the present, warns her that they might be stranded in the middle.

Jo-yeong, who was hit by gunshots, sobs while holding young Lee-gon. The King’s demise has left Lady Noh and the staff in mourning. Shin-jae, on the other hand, reveals to his mother who his real son is and tells her what his father did. However, Shin-jae’s mother also adopts him as a son.

In 1994, Lee-lim observes the gateway open while entering the bamboo grove with his Manpasikjeok. Lee-gon seems to punish him just as he is about to pass through. Lee-lim informs Tae-eul that his nephew has failed in the present. Then Tae-eul makes a failed attempt to fire. Lee-lim gets shot out of the blue, and then the storms start. 1994 Lee-gon puts Lee-lim to death. Tae-eul realises that Lee-gon has been successful and won’t be returning, which also erases all of the memories from her mind.

The King: Eternal Monarch: Happy Ending

Tae-eul awakens in the bamboo forest in 2020, with a rifle and wearing a bloody coat. In 2021, she receives a voicemail from Na-ri in which she is given the role of Lee Gon. They finally cross paths again, kiss, and the story has a happy conclusion. In Corea, Lee-gon and Tae-eul end up in the same time frame. The couple is discovered in the wilderness by Jo-yeong. Lee-gon understands he needs to erase the security footage from the palace. Finally parting ways, the couple makes a promise to reconnect in the future.

Awards

  • 2020 SBS Drama Award – December 31, 2020
    Best Actor – Lee Min-ho

Interesting Facts about The King: Eternal Monarch 

  1. “The King: Eternal Monarch” ranked among the top 10 programmes most talked about according to the findings of a survey on internet reactions to TV programmes in the first half of 2020 done by the government agency, Korea Communications Commission.
  2. It was eagerly awaited by fans prior to its broadcast because it was Lee Min-ho’s first comeback after his mandatory military service, and it was penned by screenwriter Kim Eun-sook.
  3. It was listed as the most popular Korean drama series on Netflix in India, Malaysia, Philippines and Singapore and one of the top two in the U.S
  4. Due to the popularity of the series, the BBQ Chicken business that advertised on it reported selling 550,000 sets of fried chicken in a single month.

FAQs

  1. Who are the directors of ‘The King: Eternal Monarch’?
    Baek Sang-hoon and Jung Ji-hyun.
  2. What genre is the drama ‘The King: The Eternal Monarch’?
    Romance, Fantasy.
  3. How many episodes are there in the drama ‘The King: Eternal Monarch’?
    16 episodes.
  4. What are the Instagram ID’s of the lead actors?

    actorleeminho is the Instagram ID of Lee Min-ho.

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