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Drama 'Crash Landing on You' accused of glamorizing North Korea

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A conservative political party has lodged a complaint against popular rom-com
A conservative political party has lodged a complaint against popular rom-com "Crash Landing on You," starring A-list actors Hyun Bin and Son Ye-jin. Courtesy of tvN

By Dong Sun-hwa

Cable channel tvN's North Korea-themed drama "Crash Landing on You" has been accused of glamorizing the reclusive state, police said Wednesday.

The conservative Christian Liberty Party lodged a complaint with police against tvN on Jan. 9 for allegedly violating the National Security Law. It claims the soap opera ― which is mostly set in a small village in North Korea ― has only depicted North Korean soldiers in a "peaceful" way.

The party released a statement on Jan. 10, insisting South Korean citizens have been "incited" by the TV series that failed to clearly indicate North Korea is the nation's "main opponent."

"Our security law stipulates we should not sympathize with an anti-government organization that threatens the nation's existence," the statement reads. "We want the instigators to be promptly investigated and punished."

Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency has been reviewing the complaint, but reportedly has not yet launched an investigation.

Since the TV series is based on fiction, many believe the cable channel is unlikely to be punished.

"Fiction-based dramas have rarely been punished for breaking the security law," a police agency official said.

The drama's producer Lee Jung-hyo said during a press conference in Seoul in December: "I know some people are uncomfortable about our subject, North Korea, but we don't portray a wholly authentic North Korea in our drama. Most settings are closer to a fantasy, although some aspects do reflect real North Korean life."

"Crash Landing on You" is a 16-episode rom-com revolving around South Korean chaebol scion Yoon Se-ri (played by Son Ye-jin) and high-ranking North Korean officer Ri Jong-hyok (Hyun Bin). The pair bump into each other in North Korea after a paraglider carrying Yoon makes an emergency landing there.

The soap opera has been gaining popularity in Korea, with its latest episode ― aired on Jan. 19 ― garnering 14.6 percent viewership.

Dong Sun-hwa


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