Saturday, November 24, 2012

Princess Hours (Goong)

The Royal Couple - Crown Prince Lee Shin & Crown Princess Shin Chaekyeong
As I was reading the comments about Princess Hours or also known as The Imperial Househould (Goong), it is by far, one of the most popular dramas of MBC. It was broadcast from January 11 to March 30, 2006 on Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation.

According to TNS Media, Princess Hours was the tenth most popular drama of 2006. Due to the success of the first season, a second season was to be produced. However, it will no longer be produced due to the withdrawal of two main actors.


Set in an alternate 21st-century reality where Korea possesses a royal family, since 1945 to present, this show revolves around the lives of the Crown Prince Lee Shin, and his new bride, Chaekyeong.
The series starts off with the news that the King, Shin's father, is very ill. There is a grim outlook on the King's health, the royal family scrambles to find a wife for Shin, so as to allow him to take over the royal throne if the situation requires. Despite being in love with another girl, the ambitious and talented ballerina Hyorin whom Shin initially proposed to (she rejects him to pursue her ballet dreams), he eventually marries a commoner to whom he was betrothed by his late grandfather in an old agreement with the girl's grandfather. He marries the headstrong yet lovable Chaekyeong after Hyorin's rejection. Despite initially feeling nothing for Chaekyeong, love eventually blossoms between the couple as time passes.
In the meantime, however, matters are further complicated with the return of Lee Yul and his mother Lady HwaYoung, who was once the Crown Princess before the death of her husband, the late Crown Prince, older brother of the current King. Yul and his mother were chased out of the palace some time after the death of his father, and it is later revealed that this was due to the King's discovery of an affair between Yul's mother and the current King who was his father's younger brother. Yul's mother has returned with a sinister motive in mind; to restore her son back to the throne, which, in her mind, is rightfully his. A series of events befall the palace with the schemes Yul's mother carries out. It is further intensified by the various scandals involving the royal family, which are inclusive of the Shin's continuing relationship with his old flame Hyorin, and the budding love Yul develops for Chaekyeong, his cousin's new-found bride. Things get out of hand and the royal family takes matters into their own hands.

Chaekyeong's family - preparing for the Royal wedding.
The main casts:
  • Yoon Eun Hye - as Shin Chaekyeong (신채경)
Shin Chaekyeong is a very creative and outgoing, normal high school girl. She attends the same school as Lee Shin, the Crown Prince of Korea. Her grandfather was best friends with the former king. To honour his friend, the late king dictated that Chaekyeong is to become the Crown Princess, meaning that she is to marry whoever is the Crown Prince at the designated time of the marriage (Lee Shin). Although she often seems immature and irritating, she is a kindhearted, innocent, honest person. Often called "pig" by her younger brother, Chaekyeong marries the Prince because of the promised arrangement made between her and Shin's grandfather. Her initial reaction to Lee Shin is one of irritation as she does not want to marry this young and to the unemotional Crown Prince. However, she falls in love with him in the earlier part of the series, not knowing that he, in turn, feels the same way, toward the end of the episodes. Although she sees Lee Yul only as a friend and cousin-in-law, he falls in love with her.
  • Joo Ji Hon - as Crown Prince Lee Shin (이 신)
The future Crown Prince of Korea, Lee Shin, is seen as a smug, indifferent, insensitive young man. After getting rejected by his girlfriend when he proposes to her, he decides to go along with his elders' arranged marriage with Shin Chaekyeong. At first, he is irritated by her naivety and enthusiasm, but as he recognises how genuinely sweet she is, he begins to open his heart to her, and falls in love. Throughout the series, it becomes obvious that he is just a lonely, sensitive, warm and kind young man. He also owns a teddy bear, Alfred, the only 'companion' that allows him to let his guard down, which serves as a focal point throughout the series. As his cousin re-enters the picture after being forced out of the country many years earlier, the Prince quickly butts head with him, as Lee Yul is a contender not only for the throne, but also for the Crown Princess-to-be Chaekyeong's affection.
  • Kim Jeong Hoon (김정훈) - as Prince Yul [Hwi-Sung dae Goon]
Yul left Korea at the age of 5. He "was supposed to be the Crown Prince", but his father died in a car accident and he and his mother were kicked out of the palace. He was the one who was supposed to marry Chaekyeong, but because of this accident he is no longer able to. He has a crush on Chaekyeong and he tries to tell her that he is her fiancé, but she does not understand. His mother is trying to get justice and revenge for him. Towards the end of the series, he tells his mother to stop and he finds it extremely irritating. He is also best friends with Prince William; which makes them call each other "bros".
  • Song Ji Hyo - as Min Hyo Rin (민효린)
Hyorin is a talented and gifted ballet dancer. She is beautiful, intelligent, accomplished—basically, perfect in every way possible, but she is also poor. Prince Shin and her ballet instructor paid for her tuition fees at school. In the beginning, she is Shin's girlfriend, and he proposes to her. However, she rejects him, not only because she thinks he is joking, but also because she does not wish to give up her dreams of becoming a star ballerina. When she sees Chaekyeong and Shin's wedding and how much Chaekyeong is loved by the people (similar to Diana, Princess of Wales), she regrets her hasty decision, and does everything she can to oust Chaekyeong from her position. Hyo-rin finds ways to draw Shin back to her, including a "chance" meeting in Thailand, but simply ends up hurting herself, resulting in attempted suicide by pill overdose. Later, however, she recognises that Shin does truly love Chaekyeong. She ultimately gives up on him and instead decides to pursue and concentrate on her career as a ballerina.

I have realized something in this drama. It's that, no matter how stiff a person is, and no matter how much he/she doesn't like at first, if you just show your true self whenever you are together, or if you spend so much time together, there will always be a chance that one person whom you probably fell in love with will also fall in love with you. 

Prince Yul and Crown Prince Lee Shin competes to win Chaekyeong's heart. But, Chaekyeong's heart has been already dedicated to the Crown Prince without anyone dictating her. She fell in love with him despite the fact that he is always the reason behind her tears, despite him being arrogant to her. 

No one can really dictate love. It dictates us! :)

Princess Hours has won some awards and nominations. 
  • 2006 Seoul Drama Awards: Best Art Director (Min Uhn Ok)
  • 2006 MBC Acting Awards: Best New Actor (Joo Ji Hoon)
  • 2006 MBC Acting Awards: Best New Actress (Yoon Eun Hye)
  • 2007 MBC Acting Awards: Best New Artist (Joo Ji Hoon)
Goong's Promotional Poster grabbed from Wikipedia



Chubskulit Rose said...

Nakakamiss manood ng Korean telenovela. I wish I could watch it again..

papaleng said...

I am not quite sure bunso, if ito yung Koreanovela na pinanood ni misis sa Youtube. Temptation of Wife muna ako bunso, type ko uling masilayan ang ganda ni Marian.

Lainy said...

Looks like a really interesting Korean telenovela, Marie. I haven't watched one in ages. Sigh!

Ron said...

hehe it indeed was a great tv series... i only got to see queen seon duk and green rose if im correct...

love to see more amazing korean tv series.. with correct eng subtitles... or dubbed.. :)

cheers for sharing! :))

kulasa said...

my sister in law loves anything Korean on tv hehe, I would see her at the sala on the wee hours at night and wonder what she's always it would be her K favorites :) When I had more time I used to watch their awesome romantic tv series....they are so good in making romantic stories especially the historical ones :)

betchai said...

i haven't seen any korean telenovelas, i know, i am not in at all, and many of my friends would talk about this and i am like, "ha? what is happening?" hehe, but you write very well and really put your heart in the review.

Dhemz said...

how cool! this is something I would like to watch...right now, I'm watching Iris.

Yannie said...

Napa smile ako when I saw the pics. There is a photo slide in Youtube of Princess Hours that my BF want us to imitate for our prenup pic. hehe

Rovie Aguis said...

I remembered not sleeping and going to work for two days just to watch this on DVD. LOL.

This is such a nice and very interesting story. Now that I have read your post, I thought of watching it again and feel like a high school girl.Hehehe

Rovie Aguis said...

I remembered not sleeping and going to work for two days just to watch this on DVD. LOL.

This is such a nice and very interesting story. Now that I have read your post, I thought of watching it again and feel like a high school girl.Hehehe

Mai said...

i haven't watched this one. I'm going to check this out. I wonder, what it is about Korean telenovelas? we're all so hooked.

Teresa Martinez said...

Korean telenovela has really captured the hearts of Filipinos. We cannot seem to get enough of it.

Nova Hedges said...

very common and interesting show, the girl reminds me of Sandara... a nice show to past our time...thanks for sharing..

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