‘Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo’ K-Drama Finale: SBS Series Ends With Highest Ratings For Final Episode And Ambiguously For Second Season

After more than two months, Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo (also known as Scarlet Heart: Ryeo and Scarlet Heart: Goryeo) has finally concluded. Overall, the K-drama was unique when it comes to its place in K-drama history. The Seoul Broadcasting System (SBS) K-drama will go down as one of the most expensive series ever produced by the Korean television company, yet to not do so well among the domestic Korean viewership, but to be fully embraced by the international viewership, especially in China and the Americas.

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"Moonlight Drawn by Clouds" is a period K-drama airing on KBS starring Park Bo Gum and Kim Yoo Jung. [Image by Korean Broadcasting System (KBS)]

True the primary reason why Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo did not do so well for domestic Korean viewership has to do with the fact it competed with Moonlight Drawn by Clouds. However, once the former concluded, the latter received a major boost in viewership starting with the 17th episode.

The boost in viewership continued onward until Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo aired its finale resulting in the highest viewership ratings recorded for any episode. Not only that, the K-drama ended ambiguously when it comes to the possibility of a second season.

Viewership numbers show that the domestic Korean viewership, both for the nation and the Seoul National Capital Area for both viewership ratings companies, were double-digits across the board. According to said ratings provided by TNmS Media Korea, the nation recorded 10.8 percent viewership, and the Seoul National Capital Area recorded 11.8 percent viewership. For AGB Nielsen Korea, the nation recorded 11.3 percent viewership, and the Seoul National Capital Area recorded 12.2 percent viewership. Take note this is only the second time double-digits swept across the board for an episode. The only other time was for the 18th episode.

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"Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo" is loosely based off of the novel "Bu Bu Jing Xin" by Tong Hua, but it is more based off of the C-Drama "Scarlet Heart." The source drama has a second season titled "Scarlet Heart 2" which takes place in the 21st Century. [Image by Zhejiang STV]

Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo also ended ambiguously when it comes to the possibility of airing a second season. For those who do not know, the K-drama is based on a C-drama titled Scarlet Heart. Pretty much, both the Korean version and original Chinese version were similar in ending. [WARNING: Light Spoilers For Finale!] The only difference is that we did not see a doppelganger descendant of Wang So appear at the end of the finale. Instead, it points to the possibility that Wang So himself will find a way to time travel to the 21st Century to find Hae Soo who is going by her 21st Century name, Go Ha Jin. The direction is executed in a way that Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo can remain a single season or continue onward with a second season if SBS chooses to do so. If by chance SBS chooses to do so, it will have to cater more to international viewership more simply because that is where the series got most of its popularity.

Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart: Ryeo has concluded its run on SBS and will be replaced by Doctor Romantic (also known as Romantic Doctor, Teacher Kim). However, the entire series can be viewed in its entirety for free, with ads, exclusively on DramaFever. It should also be noted there is a director’s cut of the K-drama that will soon be available to watch on DramaFever too. It will have scenes that were cut from the series which may flesh out the plot holes the original airing cut had.

[Featured Image by Seoul Broadcasting System (SBS)]