The general verdict on the internet about King The Land is that the “romcom is romcom-ing hard.” We agree, but in many ways, we believe that it is a tragedy because it sets our expectations too high, only for them to be dashed to the ground in real life. So many of these scenes are straight out of a Wattpad novel but are far more tastefully done, which is the USP of the series. Where is Gu Won, who will come to our house to check on us because he thinks we look slightly sick? Who else will put that much effort into a first date other than Gu Won, in an era where men think it is okay to show up in a run-down t-shirt and slippers? It is probably because of this that we needed to see Da Eul and Pyeong Hwa’s stories on the side. While all the friends have difficult jobs, a prince is trying to win over Sa Rang while her actual love interest is ready to go to war over her. We feel that the truly lucky girls are the ones with undiagnosed lucky girl syndrome. But this series remains Gu Won’s show. He is the one setting the standards, and he is already iconic. But while we cry over our unrequited love for him, let us go through a recap of how lucky Sa Rang is.
How Does Sa Rang Turn Down Prince Samir?
We want to start with Da Eul because this time around, she is the only one with a lazy bum of a man in her life. He doesn’t care that she is overworked, and he won’t even get up from the couch to take the trash out. His daughter rightfully says that she doesn’t want to grow up and be with a man like him. We think it might have pinched him a little, but he could get over it with his general thick headedness.
As for Sa Rang, she is happily getting fake married to a smiling Gu Won, and that is when Samir comes there. He is furious because Gu Won gave him the wrong clothes and dressed him as a common worker so that he could take his place. They start arguing once again, and Sa Rang angrily leaves the scene. Gu Won and Samir are friends who bicker, and we are sad that the latter’s character had less than an episode to show himself in. As much as we like Sa Rang and Gu Won as a couple, we feel Samir and Gu Won have better chemistry.
That night, Sa Rang stays in the hotel, and she goes to the Han River with Gu Won for a midnight date. This scene right here, of a girl having beer and ramen with the love of her life, is why women all over the world want to travel to South Korea in search of this mythical “Oppa.” Sa Rang has not said yes to an official date yet, but she is dropping hints that she is interested in spending time with Gu Won.
The next morning, when Gu Won comes to wake her up, she pulls him inside because she spots Su Mi coming into the room, and she doesn’t want to reveal that she stayed there. Gu Won takes care of the matter by pretending that he is the guest staying there, and since this series is rom-com-ing hard, he picks up Sa Rang and orders her to go back to sleep. This little stunt ends with both of them having an increased heart rate, and it is not because of the exercise.
Of course, no amount of swoon-worthy moments between Sa Rang and Gu Won can prevent Samir from shooting his shot, and he invites Sa Rang to a dinner where Gu Won is sulkily waitressing. When Samir proposes to Sa Rang and asks her to be his wife, Gu Won loses his cool first of all and is ready to drag her away from there. But Sa Rang remains professional and sweet, and she thanks Samir for the attention while gently turning him down. Samir takes it well, and in true Rom-Com fashion, where everything ends in rainbows, Samir, Sa Rang, and Gu Won proceed to have a nice dinner. Isn’t it tragically dreamy?
On another note, we couldn’t help but notice that Samir’s character was cushioned in stereotypes of the Arab world, and that is what Gu Won used to insult him during their arguments. Korean dramas are not really known for their cultural sensitivity, but they should have known where to separate the fun from the propagation of harmful stereotypes. Anyway, while leaving, Gu Won and Samir acknowledged each other as friends and he promised to come back for Sa Rang one day. Maybe we will see Samir in the finale.
Back in the hotel, Gu Won openly declares war against his sister and says that he doesn’t want to sit back while she continues to take the employees of the hotel for granted. This is actually triggered by the fact that Sang Sik mentions that the woman Gu Won was looking for must not have been important if he couldn’t find her record. Sang Sik probably doesn’t know that it was Gu Won’s mother, but Gu Won now knows what can happen if people like his sister are in charge; therefore, he decides to step up in the race.
What Happens On Gu Won And Sa Rang’s Date?
Though Samir has left, his impact has been enough that Gu Won still gets nightmares about him. He decides to meet Sa Rang to move things forward, but she is at the sauna with her friends, thanks to Pyeong Hwa. After she sprained her back while working, her supervisor, in her typical passive-aggressive style, told her that she should try selling things outside of her work hours so that she could maximize profit, even though it was illegal. Desperate to get promoted, Pyeong Hwa agrees, and she takes her friend to the sauna, where she tries to make sales. Since Gu Won wants to meet Sa Rang, he meets her and her friends there and joins them in their little scheme. Only Sa Rang does not know that it is illegal, and when she tells off Da Eul and Pyeong Hwa for what they are doing, they mention how they are being forced into it, and unless someone higher up knows about it, it won’t change. This whole time, Gu Won has been right there, making mental notes of things.
On the other hand, Da Eul and Pyeong Hwa also have some fun by ragging Gu Won, and they push him to confess his feelings to Sa Rang. Heeding their advice, he asks Sa Rang out on a date, and she blushingly agrees.
Remember how we called King The Land a tragedy at the beginning of the article? Unless we can get a date like this in real life, this series will continue to be a tragedy for us. The expectations have been set way too high. Gu Won is perfect, and it doesn’t matter that he got the date idea from the internet. He pours some delicious sangria and makes her drink some cute-looking soup and what we know to be very tasty spaghetti. However, at the end of King The Land episode 8, Gu Won gets a little too carried away and, while cooking the steak, plays too much with the oil, setting the cooking table on fire and causing the sprinklers to turn on. Yet, this is the moment for them both, as they finally kiss, making their relationship official.
It turns out that there is some merit to keeping stories simple. So far, Sa Rang is just your average girl, and Gu Won is a regular brooding hero. Yet, these two are making waves across K-drama land simply because it has been so long since we saw a love story. It is one thing for romance to be a part of the story, and it is completely another for the story to be dedicated to romance. Whoever decided to greenlight King The Land deserves all the blessings of the gods, and we simply want to see more and more of this drama.