Nearly surpassing 10% viewer rating, “The Queen’s Umbrella” faces unexpected criticism

Some viewers and historians recently expressed their opinions on the setting of “The Queen’s Umbrella”.

Making hot topics even before its official broadcast, the historical drama “The Queen’s Umbrella”, which marks Kim Hye-soo’s return to the small screen, has nearly surpassed 10% viewer rating.

“The Queen’s Umbrella” even topped the ranking of dramas of the same time slot on all channels in both nationwide and Seoul metropolitan area categories. 

Under The Queen’s Umbrella

Set in a fictional Joseon Dynasty, “The Queen’s Umbrella” depicts the struggles that the Queen faces when jumping into the fierce royal education war for the sake of her troublemaker princes.

The story of Queen Im Hwa-ryeong (Kim Hye-soo) running around days and nights to educate the Grand Princes, and the concubines spreading all kinds of secret methods to help their children become the King is enough to stimulate the viewers’ curiosity.

The Queen's Umbrella

Various settings that cannot be found in any other dramas about Joseon royal families were created for the development of this drama.

While the Crown Prince and his sons are enjoying a peaceful life, there is a secret competition between the princes for the “King” position, and a war between Queen Hwa-ryeong, whose position has been weakened due to her five Grand Princes, and Queen Dowager (Kim Hae-sook).

the queen's umbrella

For this reason, some netizens criticized the drama for taking the Joseon Dynasty as the background, pointing out that the settings and lines are similar to Chinese historical works. 

Historians who watched “The Queen’s Umbrella” also said that the overall atmosphere of the drama does not feel like that of the Joseon Dynasty, but more like the Qing Dynasty of China.

the queen's umbrella

CBS No Cut News reported the opinions of historians who watched “The Queen’s Umbrella” on October 27th. 

Historian Jeon Woo-yong said, “There is no way that these things could happen in a Joseon royal family. Joseon was a society where discrimination against illegitimate children could be clearly seen, and it was heavily based on Zhu Xi’s Neo-Confucianism. The life of a prince would be in danger if he spoke to the Crown Prince or the Queen with such attitudes”. He pointed out that the content of “The Queen’s Umbrella” was not “fictional” but “delusional”.

kim hye soo the queen's umbrella

He went on to explain, “China was originally a society based on Neo-Confucianism, but eight princes had argued over the throne since the beginning of the Qing Dynasty. This detail is similar to the setting of ‘The Queen’s Umbrella’”.

Many historians also believe that ‘The Queen’s Umbrella’ is still a historical content and that the completeness of the work might be reduced if it deviates from the basic context of the times despite being a historical drama set in a fictional Joseon Dynasty.

The Queen's Umbrella

Historian Kim Jae-won said, “In my position, I encourage the making of content to express as many historical materials as it can. Even so, it seems like the work has paid no respect for history by presenting things that are far from the context of the times. It’s not even necessary to point out that the work actually copied Chinese historical dramas.”

In particular, this problem of a historical work has left great regrets during this time when K-dramas are enjoying global popularity through OTT platforms.

The Queen's Umbrella

Sungshin Women’s University professor Seo Kyung-deok, a Korean public relations expert, also said, “China-related historical and cultural distortions have been intensifying recently, so if there is anything that can be an excuse, I think producers should be more careful even with fictional dramas”.

He continued, “K-dramas have recently attracted keen attention from global viewers through OTT services, so I think production teams should pay more attention to not cause historical misunderstandings to foreigners.”

The Queens Umbrella

Source: Insight

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