Friday, August 13, 2010

Baker King reaches “national drama” status

What’s a “national drama”? The official designation comes when a drama has surpassed 40% in the ratings, but it also has added connotations. That is to say, a television show that hits that level of viewership is one that the whole country is watching and buzzing about. Examples: Sandglass, My Name Is Kim Sam-soon, and A Rosy Life.

Baker King Kim Tak-gu has surpassed 40%, earning it national drama status. But single episode ratings can be misleading, and there’s another measure that takes into account the overall performance, which is the rating average over the entire series. With Wednesday’s Episode 19 (which drew a 44.9% rating), Baker King has now become the drama with the highest ratings average among KBS Wednesday-Thursday shows in the last decade. It surpassed the previous leader, A Rosy Life (which starred the now-deceased Choi Jin-sil), whose series average was 34.2%. This week’s episodes bumped Baker King‘s overall average up to 34.3%.

Baker King‘s mix of warmth and makjang (excessively melodramatic) elements has hooked audiences, and spurred KBS into discussions to extend the drama. However, the production recently decided NOT to extend the series, which will end with its planned 30 episodes.

Meanwhile, the competition: SBS’s My Girlfriend Is a Gumiho managed a solid start with a 12.7% rating this week, which is a safe number. That leaves the drama room to improve, but even if it remains in that range, its fresh and funny storytelling will likely earn it a passionate fanbase anyway. (Much like You’re Beautiful, which generated tons of buzz and could probably be called a huge success despite 10%-12% ratings.)

On the other hand, MBC’s Road No. 1 has had a pretty disastrous showing and yesterday’s episode brought it to its lowest rating yet, 4.9%. Thursday’s rose slightly to 5.2%.

Baker King Kim Tak-gu, My Girlfriend Is a Gumiho

credit : javabeans

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