Korean Historical Dramas (Sageuks)

Whatever the reason you like Korean historical dramas (sageuks) … the culture … the costumes … the history … the martial arts … the love stories … the innocence … they have long been ratings blockbusters.

How many times when you have been watching a sageuk, have you wondered “just where does this fit in history”? The Sageuk Channel here on Viki was designed to help you with that exact question, and a little more.

On The Sageuk Channel we are attempting to provide as many sageuks as we can in chronological order, or as close as we can come to it. The shows are listed with very brief explanations but include indications as to whether they are available under license on Viki. If the name is in red then you can just click on it and off to the Viki channel you go. There are no shows here though. Over time there will be links to as many trailers as we can come up with as well as other info. One useful tool is a link to all of the Korean Monarchs thanks to Wikipedia. Eventually we will try to have something to show what sageuks are currently airing in Korea.

The reason for this channel is to help boost interest in sageuks and hopefully viewership. With higher viewership perhaps Viki will be more successful negotiating for licensing rights for more of the shows.
The channel is far from finished although there is a pretty good start on the list. There are a few movies listed but the channel is primarily for TV series. If you have info or ideas to share please leave a comment and favorite the channel while at it.

Join us at … The Sageuk Channel: http://www.viki.com/tv/22648c-the-sageuk-channel

To read more about Historical Korean Dramas, check this out:


Thank you for the info and the work you put into the channel :smiley:
I will start watching a sageuk from your list!

1 Like

I’m really excited to see this channel. What a great idea to put everything together in one spot for die hard Sageuk lovers. I’ll definitely start using the list to increase my Korean history knowledge and look forward to future updates.

1 Like

Great idea! I could never understand how to know when the historical shows were a long time ago or not so long. Using the list of Korean monarchs I can better understand. I loved Jumong and Kingdom of the Winds.

1 Like

This is very helpful. Thanks.

1 Like

Nice idea. I like to watch Sageuks from time to time and sometimes they are helpful because in ‘modern day’ kdrama they refer to things/persons from the past sometimes. Like last year I was watching “Lee soon Shin you are the best” and “Gu Family Book”. Made me read a bit into Lee Soon Shin so I knew he could not be killed in Gu Family Book.

1 Like

I think that understanding more about Korean history is often helpful in many shows.

I seriously LOVE those dramas
I fell in love with song il gook. I am happy that there are ppl who also watched these dramas and like them

1 Like

I have a question.
If anybody watched Faith
They always talk about an Empress Ki who was born in Goryeo but married the Yuan Emperor… But since it’s a drama about Goryeo she was a bad women
so they talked about that women in the new historical drama Empress ki ?

If yes ,that would be really funny
i like how historical dramas are so different in their views.
Like Dong Yi and jang-ok-jeong-lives-in-love
While Dong yi was the bad women in Jang Ok Jeong , she is a wonderful nice innocent women in Dong yi
I will never understand who the bad women was.

Oh and I love how there is always a Prince or a Princess who had to run away with the mom or with a maid and later they find out their Destiny
That’s why I love Jumong and Kingdom of the Winds

Bad thing about real historical dramas, which shows that real life is not like in dramas
ppl who love each other always die or can’t be together, or have to marry someone else

upps i wrote pretty much

1 Like

I never saw Empress Ki but I did watch Faith and I know what you mean. I saw a few Sageuks who had the same persons in them but their stories where told in a slightly different way. And sometimes I think it might have been better to leave a real person out of a drama. Why did they even use Lee Soon Shin in Gu Family Book, it would have been better if they made someone up.

1 Like

Yeahh you’re right . Lee soon shin is someone who is often used in historical dramas. And it’s always different. I also think that he wasn’t necessary in gu family book but okay haha if the writers want to

1 Like

If a show takes place in the 16th century, it is difficult not to have Admiral Yi involved in some way. We almost had a show dedicated to him, Yi Sun-shin’s Unauthorized Biography, but they didn’t get funding, at least not yet. He was a brilliant naval commander and the turtle ships were really something for their time.

Agree. I don’t know much about him , i first have to learn the basics of Korean history haha. I am reading a book right now maybe they will mention him too.
I liked him in gu family book , but since it’s fictional… it’s funny how you imagine them after watching a drama

1 Like

Go to this channel. There is some info there, no drama, but some info.
Yi Sun-shin’s Unauthorized Biography

I will , thank you !

1 Like

Yes, Empress Ki in Faith and Empress Ki in the new Saguek drama is the same person. Was she a good person or a bad person? It’s hard to tell. What we know is that she was a Goryeo woman who married into Emperor. You can find out a little more about her in Wikipedia as Empress Gi or Empress Qi.


Like everything in real life, there is always more than 1 side to a story. So it’s up to the writers to be imaginative and create a character with a different view point.

The same with Dong Yi. Although Jang Ok Jeong (aka Jang Heebin) is a well known person in the history, Sookbin Choi (Dong Yi’s title)'s is not that well known. So the writers can be creative with her character. Jang Heebin is notorious for her greed and using her beauty to gain power and for trying to overthrow the original queen. So it was refreshing to see her in a different light in Jang Ok Jeong lives in love.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hui-bin_Jang (This is for Jang Ok Jeong or Jang Heebin or Hui-bin Jang)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suk-bin_Choe (This is for Dong Yi or Sukbin Choi or Consort Choi)

So when you watch any Saguek, you should watch it with a grain of salt and maybe read about the characters in wikipedia.


Yeah the most confusing character for me is jang ok jeong… although i watched Dong yi before jang ok jeong lives in love , and even if i loved dong yi, i don’t want to imagine that jang ok jeong was a bad person… i loved her in JOJLIL…
Like the writers can be creative , i like how i can be free to imagine all of them like i want to …

I always read a little bit about the characters and i made a lot of research in my “jang ok jeong phase” like always when i am watching a historical drama

1 Like

If you haven’t, you might like reading about the Samguk Sagi.


If you watch certain dramas in order then some thing make lot more sense. Like Jumong’s son is the king in the beginning of Kingdom of the Winds and then his son Muhyul played the main part. Muhyul is the king in Ja Myung Go though with a much different personality.

Omgg yes I watched both. Loved this dramas… I really liked ot that I watched Jumong and then Kingdom of the winds where the story is about his grandson. It was sad tho. They had both a similar story

1 Like