One of the most popular K-dramas to air during the late Winter season was Crash Landing on You.
The interesting plot, emotionally-invested characters (especially all four leads Son Ye-Jin, Hyun Bin, Seo Ji-Hye, and Kim Jung-Hyun), and the excellent direction and execution were reasons fans kept returning to the series.
It also helped that many popular Korean actors made limited or special appearances in Crash Landing on You. The extremely popular Kim Soo-Hyun made a cameo as his character, Dong-Gu, from Secretly, Greatly. And near the end of the series, Choi Ji-Woo, the popular actress from Stairway to Heaven, made an appearance too.
Sadly, all good things must come to an end. Crash Landing on You recently aired its finale in which Yoon Se-Ri (Son Ye-Jin) and Ri Jeong-Hyuk (Hyun Bin) did live “happily ever after” away from Korea.
Yoon Se-Ri and Ri Jeong-Hyuk find each other again
Before we continue, it must be stressed the following contains spoilers for the finale of Crash Landing on You (Also known as Emergency Love Landing). This will specifically be on episodes 15 and 16.
Before the penultimate and final episodes, it was evident that both Yoon Se-Ri and Ri Jeong-Hyuk would have to return to where they belong despite how both may feel for each other.
With military and government officials in both North and South Korea now knowing about Ri Jeong-Hyuk and his platoon being in Seoul, the situation could become an international crisis resulting in war.
For Ri Jeong-Hyuk and his platoon, South Korea found they were of no threat and were willing to help them assimilate into society. For North Korea, however, the fact that Jeong-Hyuk and his platoon are affiliated with high-up military officials is an issue.
In the end, both North and South Korea agreed to a trade: Ri Jeong-Hyuk and his platoon for several South Korean POWs.
On a personal level, both Ri Jeong-Hyuk and Yoon Se-Ri had responsibilities to take care of because of their status.
For Ri Jeong-Hyuk, he is not just the son of a higher-up in the North Korean military; he is a commanding officer who is in charge of patrolling the border on the northside.
For Yoon Se-Ri, she needs to establish and grow her company Se-Ri’s Choice. Through luck, both could do their jobs better after what they went through.
Eventually, both Ri Jeong-Hyuk and Yoon Se-Ri were able to fulfill their responsibilities.
Jeong-Hyuk was properly discharged from the military to become a pianist (what he was before he went into the North Korean military).
Se-Ri made her company self-sufficient, in which everyone works together as a team instead of relying on her for everything, a situation made evident when Se-Ri was in North Korea.
With both Ri Jeong-Hyuk and Yoon Se-Ri now “free from binding obligations,” they can find each other. Se-Ri learns that Jeong-Hyuk is a pianist again and creates a partnership with a music organization in Switzerland to feature talented musicians around the world.
The program promotes musicians, but Se-Ri hopes it was also seen as an “invitation” for Jeong-Hyuk to find her.
Ironically, it isn’t the music program that brings Ri Jeong-Hyuk and Yoon Se-Ri back together again, but Se-Ri crash landing in the middle of a field where Jeong-Hyuk happens to be.
Apparently, he took the wrong train and was sent to where Se-Ri was, playing on the detail their relationship is fate.
Eventually, Ri Jeong-Hyuk and Yoon Se-Ri are together, having a place of their own in Switzerland, which is the land where they first met a long time ago.
Jeong-Hyuk makes his living being a pianist, the dream he was pursuing before he was called back to North Korea after his brother died, and Se-Ri continues to thrive in her business but no longer needs to be present for its success.
Ultimately, they did live happily ever after.
Surpassing the milestone set by Goblin
Back in the K-drama swing season for 2016 to 2017, tvN aired one of its most popular series to date, Goblin (also known as Guardian: The Great and Lonely God).
Besides becoming one of the most highly-rated K-dramas in tvN’s history, it also set the record for viewership for a finale.
The Crash Landing on You finale broke the record set by Goblin. According to the viewership ratings provided by AGB Nielsen Korea, the final episode earned a viewership rating of 21.683 percent for Korea and 23.249 percent for Seoul.
Compared to Goblin, Crash Landing on You is ahead by two percent across the board for the finale. However, Goblin still has a better viewership average.
Internationally, Crash Landing on You did very well, too, as Netflix exclusively distributed it. Unlike other streaming services that stream Asian content, when Netflix gets viewership rights, it is for all international regions.
Crash Landing on You became one of the most-watched series on the streaming service during its live run alongside tvN.
In Korea, Crash Landing on You has officially concluded, and its time slot will be occupied by upcoming tvN K-drama, Hi Bye Mama!, which is another tvN K-drama that will air exclusively on Netflix too.
Thankfully, international K-drama fans can still watch Crash Landing on You as all 16 episodes are available to view on Netflix in all regions.
Take note viewers will need a subscription to the streaming service to watch the K-drama.