‘Uncontrollably Fond’ Finally Gets Interesting With Sudden Viewership Spike — Can KBS K-Drama Starring Kim Woo Bin And Bae Suzy Capitalize?

After airing 10 episodes, it seemed as if Uncontrollably Fond, the K-drama currently airing on the Korean Broadcasting System (KBS) starring Kim Woo Bin and Bae Suzy, would simply fall off K-drama fans’ radars. Originally, the K-drama started out strong with double-digit viewership thanks to the mass marketing and promotion it received. Not to mention, Uncontrollably Fond is considered the most ambitious K-drama KBS has produced on a business level, airing simultaneously in five countries. Sadly as Uncontrollably Fond progressed, its success diminished with a failing viewership rating.

Nevertheless, many K-drama fans have expressed their disdain for Uncontrollably Fond, starting out with Bae Suzy’s acting. Despite the fact she is recognized as Korea’s Icon of First Love, her acting has always been a topic of negative discussion ever since her first role in Dream High. To be fair, though, Suzy’s acting has improved, but it is still nowhere near the level as some A-list Korean actors such as Park Shin Hye or Lee Jong Suk. Actually, there are some actors who are not A-list, such as Choi Sooyoung, who do a far better job acting than Suzy simply because they are professionally and academically trained.

Surprisingly, Uncontrollably Fond bounced back and suddenly became interesting, resulting in a sudden viewership spike. Will the KBS K-drama be able to capitalize?

The sudden spike in viewership ratings could be seen between Episodes 11 and 12 of Uncontrollably Fond (also known as Lightly, Ardently), as recorded by Korean television viewership companies, TNS Media Korea and Nielsen Korea. For TNmS Ratings, the Seoul National Capital Area increased from 8.1 percent to 9.9 percent and the nation increased from 7.3 percent to 9.6 percent. For Nielsen Korea, the viewership increase was similar in which the Seoul National Capital Area increased from 7.8 percent to 10.6 percent and the nation increased from 7.9 percent to 9.9 percent. It should be noted that the last time an Uncontrollably Fond episode recorded double-digit viewership for any viewership rating was episode eight.

A two to three percent viewership rating jump is a big improvement, especially for Uncontrollably Fond which has been steadily declining in viewership. [NOTE: Minor Spoilers Ahead!] To be frank, it is understandable why given the plot progression and direction of Episodes 11 and 12. Prior to them, the K-drama was mostly a cat-and-mouse relationship between Kim Woo Bin’s character, Shin Joon Young, and Bae Suzy’s character, No Eul. In Episode 11, a lot of what was briefly touched upon or foreshadowed in earlier episodes comes full circle. Without really detailing the circumstances that led to the ending of Episode 12, the following scene at the ending of Episode 12 explains everything for those who have kept up with the series.

Uncontrollably Fond, KBS, K-dramas
The ending of Episode 12 of "Uncontrollably Fond," brought certain situations lightly touched on in earlier episodes full circle while establishing new conflicts that will push the plot forward with the remaining episodes. [Image via KBS]

Now that it seems that No Eul is with Choi Ji Tae (Lim Ju Hwan) and Shin Joon Young is with Yoon Jeong Eun (Lim Ju Eun), who was the real culprit who killed No Eul’s father, things are about to get interesting.

It seems that K-drama fans are now looking forward to what will happen in Uncontrollably Fond, but the question is if KBS will capitalize on the sudden spike in viewership? It is hard to say now, but there are a couple of situations working in favor of the K-drama. The first is that the direction of the plot distributes the plot’s progression among more actors and actresses. Ergo, the blunt of the work doesn’t have to fall on Kim Woo Bin and Bae Suzy despite the fact they are the lead actors. It will also benefit Uncontrollably Fond if Suzy isn’t given too many scenes especially with K-drama fans complaining about her acting.

Park Shin Hye, Doctors
"Doctors" will mark the K-drama return for Park Shin Hye (right) since "Pinocchio." She will play Yoo Hye Jung while her co-star, Kim Rae Won, will play Hong Ji Hong. [Image via Screen Capture of "Doctors" Trailer]

Second is that Doctors (also known as Doctor Crush), a K-drama airing on the Seoul Broadcasting System (SBS) starring Kim Rae Won and Park Shin Hye, will be concluding this coming week. Even though Doctors does not air on the same days as Uncontrollably Fond, it is considered their competitive K-drama from SBS. With it out of the way, the only competition Uncontrollably Fond will have to contend with is W, a K-drama airing on the Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) starring Lee Jong Suk and Han Hyo Joo, which airs on the same days and times as the KBS drama.

Ultimately, we will have to wait and see if KBS will be able to follow-up on the sudden spike in viewership and keep K-drama fans interested in Uncontrollably Fond which airs on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 9:55 p.m. KST on KBS. It will air simultaneously in China, North America, and South America, too. For those in China, it will stream on Youku Tudou. For North and South America, it will air one hour after the Korean airtime, free with ads on DramaFever, but it is also available on Viki, depending on the region.

[Image via KBS]