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8.1 - Podcast Review of Episode 1 of Crash Landing On You (CLOY)

Today, we’ll be discussing Episode 1 of Crash Landing On You, the hit K Drama on Netflix starring Hyun Bin as Ri Jyeong hyeok, Son Ye-jin as Yoon Se-ri, Seo Ji-hye as Seo Dan and Kim Jung-hyun as Gu Seung joon. We discuss:

  • The song we feature during the recap: Give You My Heart by IU.

  • The title of this K Drama in Korean is 사랑의 불시착, which translate to Love’s Emergency Landing, or Love’s Crash Landing.

  • How this show was inspired by a real event involving South Korean actress Jung Yang, whose leisure boat drifted into the maritime boundary between North and South Korea and had to be rescued.

  • Some familiar elements that we saw in Queen of Tears.

  • We introduce our characters:

    • Captain Ri Jyeong hyeok

    • Yoon Se-ri

    • Captain Ri’s men, including Sergeant Pyo Chi Su, Soldier Kim Ju Meok, and Private Geum Eun Dong

    • Se-ri’s father, the Chairman of the Queens Group, and her mother

    • Se-ri’s competitive brothers and their conniving wives

    • Gu Seung joon

  • Why there is a North Korea and a South Korea.

  • A bit about the origins of the Korean War.

  • Sung Hee’s visit to the DMZ (Demilitarized Zone) in 2011, with her father.

  • How the Chairman has just been released from prison and he names Se-ri as his successor, causing anger and angst among her brothers.

  • Se-ri goes paragliding to test out a new line of extreme sportswear, and she gets caught in a freak tornado.

  • How Se-ri ends up in North Korea, gets caught by Captain Ri, runs away, and ends up in a North Korean village.

  • How Se-ri is almost caught by commanding officer Cho Cheol Gang but Captain Ri grabs her and tucks her away inside his gate in the nick of time.

  • Why Captain Ri would save Se-ri from Cho Cheol Gang.

  • The grave robbers who turn out to be hired by Cho Cheol Gang, and who orders the grave robbers killed after they disclose the locations of the artifacts.

  • How we are up to 45 K Drama elements!

  • What we’re watching right now, besides Crash Landing On You, of course.



K Drama Chat is a weekly podcast where we take one Korean (K) Drama each season and and recap and analyze each episode. K Drama Chat is available on Apple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsSpotifyAmazon Music, and Pandora.


  1. Wow! Season 8!

    I really enjoyed this show – it was the first K Drama I ever watched. But like you said on the pod, its depiction of North Korea is not at all accurate. I am by no means an expert, but I’ve been fascinated by the country because of how completely cut off from the world it is and the incredible contrast between it and South Korea.

    From what I’ve read and watched, North Korea is far worse than it is depicted in Crash Landing On You. It is an almost unbelievably oppressive authoritarian state where the vast majority of the people live in or near poverty. It is so repressive that people cannot trust their neighbors or in some cases their family members. My understanding is that it has gotten even worse since Kim Jung Un took power and especially since Covid, which the regime used as a reason to completely lock down the country. This article shows the dramatic decrease in the numbers of North Koreans who have been able to defect since Covid:

    If listeners are interested in what life is really like in North Korea there are several good books by or about North Korean defectors. I can recommend Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea

    It is from 2010, but it paints a remarkably bleak picture.

    There is also plenty of great information on YouTube. The BBC, DW (German broadcasting) and Frontline (PBS) all have numerous videos that I can recommend. Here are just a few:

    There are also a bunch of videos with North Korean defectors who have moved to South Korea. This is a really interesting one that is about how the language (not just the accent) has changed so much due to the separation.

    Another interesting one:

    Hope this is not too much of a downer! The show is really enjoyable, even if it is sort of a fantasy depiction of North Korea!

    I can’t believe you were wondering why Jeong-hyeok saved Se-ri at the end of the episode? Have you seen Son Ye-jin?!?!

    Also, my favorite line from the episode is: "I'm saying this because we will never meet again. Your looks are totally my type. If our countries reunite, let's meet at a different occasion."

  2. Malcolm, you are amazing! Thank you for all of these resources! I checked out some of these and they are great! Very informative! Depressing, but educational. Yes, we all suspect that this show is glossing over just how hard life is in North Korea. One research paper I found talks about how electricity is only available ONE DAY A YEAR in some parts of the country, and this article is from January 2024!

    As for Captain Ri saving Se-ri because she is drop dead gorgeous, we didn't want to say it coz it's so darn obvious, but perhaps it needs to be said. Haha!

    Thanks for going on this journey with us. Love, love, love this show. I have watched CLOY several times but I'm now thinking that this show will have the emotional heft of QOT, but with the added layer of the sadness of partition. In just one episode, they mention reunification twice.

    Look forward to having you on the show!

    1. I taught students in China online for a few years. There were things that stood out, showing how difficult life still is; but nothing compares to what North Koreans face.

  3. This was my first kdrama I ever watched and I fell in love with this show from the get go. The premise, while a bit silly, is fascinating. It is unlike any other show in recent memory. Both Yoon Se-ri and Ri Jeong-Hyook were intriguing characters, both with a hidden past that we were yet to be revealed. Their first interaction was memorizing and their chemistry was amazing. You can kinda guess that they would get together at some point, but their dialogue and acting was so convincing that you are rooting for them to get together. Plus their comedic timing was on point.

    My favorite line was when Se-ri mentions that Jeong-Hyook's face is her type. In retrospect, it is both true in the show and outside of the show. Who knew?

    Cannot wait to go on this journey with you guys of reviewing IMO my favorite kdrama.


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