Legend of the Blue Sea, Dear My Friends rank 5th among 2016 dramas

This entry is part 7 of 21 in the post series Dramatop 2016

Dramatop is a post series that ranks Korean dramas based on their average nationwide viewer ratings. Today marks its 7th day and the announcement of the 5th highest rated drama of 2016 in free-to-air and cable category. Our two dramas today are special for some reason. And perhaps that is why they were watched and adored by many viewers, ensuring their spots on the top 10 list.

Free-to-Air TV Top 5: Legend of the Blue Sea (17.58 %)

Legend of the Blue Sea poster

You might be wondering why Legend of the Blue Sea has been ranked 5th already when it still has one episode left. Good point. But unless its finale gets over 30% in viewer ratings, it’s not gonna overcome the 4th highest rated drama. We’re not saying that a scenario like that is impossible but it is very unlikely for the final episode to gain such a very high jump in ratings. It is also least likely that the finale would drop in ratings in a way that could put it behind Remember in the ranking, so its position on the 5th place is now secured. This drama is special because the two leads are superstars in the Korean entertainment industry (at least at some point in the past). Lee Min-ho plays a con-artist who falls in love with a mermaid played by Jun Ji-hyun. He became well-known for his role in 2009 drama Boys Over Flowers and became more popular through his succeeding projects. Jun Ji-hyun, meanwhile, enjoyed immense popularity for his 2013 drama My Love From Another Star. So when it was announced last year that they will be playing the main characters of Legend, many fans became overjoyed and excited. Fast forward to its premiere, the drama recorded a remarkable 16.4% (should we call this the superstars’ effect?). Although the ratings didn’t change much for the following episodes, they remained higher than 15%. The drama broke through 20% on its 17th and 19th episode and whether or not it will do the same for its finale on January 25, its status as the 5th highest rated kdrama of 2016 will remain. Forever.

Legend of the Blue Sea rating

Director: Jin Hyuk & Park Seon-ho Writer: Park Ji-eun Main Cast: Lee Min-ho & Jun Ji-hyun Broadcast Period: November 16, 2016 – January 25, 2017 (Wed-Thu) Time-slot Rivals: Oh My Geum-bi, Naked Fireman, Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-joo & Missing 9

Cable TV Top 5: Dear My Friends (5.07 %)

Dear My Friends: 3rd Highest-rated Friday-Saturday drama in 2016

Another tvN drama makes it to the list. Actually, 9 of the 10 dramas in the top 10 list are produced by tvN, and one of them is Dear My Friends. What makes this drama special is simply the fact that nearly all of the main characters are grandpas and grandmas (literally, or old folks at least). Ok, so that means viewers can’t expect romantic scenes of a perfect couple that is found in most dramas, nor can they expect a story that revolves around just two or three characters. Dear My Friends tells the realistic stories and friendship of old (and young) people as they live their last years of life. If you think this drama is not for you, ok, no problem; but let us inform you that it received warm support from Korean viewers during its run. Composed of veteran actors from the industry, the drama posted a 4.9% on its first episode alone. Ups and downs in ratings were observed, but in general, it managed to stay within the 4-6% range and achieved a peak rating of 8.1%. That means the viewers loved this show and if you’re looking for something unconventional that defy your drama type, Dear My Friends should be one of your options. tvN really takes the job of offering a variety of dramas seriously, and we’re glad that this drama happened to be included in its lineup last year.

Dear My Friends TV rating

Director: Hong Jong-chan Writer: Noh Hee-kyung Main Cast: Go Hyun-jung,  Kim Hye-ja, Na Moon-hee, Go Doo-shim, Park Won-sook, Youn Yuh-jung, Joo Hyun, Kim Young-ok & Shin Goo Broadcast Period: May 13 – July 2, 2016 (Fri-Sat) Time-slot Rivals: Mirror of the Witch

To see all the list of rankings on one page, go the Korean Drama Rankings 2016.

(Dramatop: Korean Drama Rankings 2016 is a Kdramapal post series that ranks kdramas based on their nationwide average viewership ratings from Nielsen Korea. It includes in its ranking only prime time dramas that air from Monday to Saturday. We ensure the accuracy of our ranking result by collecting data directly from Nielsen Korea’s website and other reliable sources. If you have feedback or questions regarding the rankings and this post series in general, you can send them to [email protected], message us via Facebook, or comment on the post below.)

(Source of images: SBS & TVING)

Post Series Navigation<< Remember, The K2 place 6th in top dramas of 2016Moonlight Drawn by Clouds, Cheese in the Trap secure status as 4th highest rated drama in 2016 >>


Me? Just an ordinary lad with an extraordinary (says this something called 'stereotype') habit of watching Korean dramas. It started with action-filled City Hunter and the rest, as they say, is history.