A Matchmaker Reunites A King With His Late Wife In ‘Forbidden Marriage’


A Matchmaker Reunites A King With His Late Wife In ‘Forbidden Marriage’

By Joan MacDonald / Dec 12, 2022

When the king learns So-rang can channel his late wife’s spirit, he keeps her by his side. KOCOWA

King Lee Heon is more than heartbroken. He’s so traumatized by the death of his wife that seven years later he still suffers from nightmares and hallucinations. The court declared her death a suicide, but he’s sure it was murder. With a verdict of suicide he can’t give her a proper royal burial. He loved his mysteriously distant wife and now he’s loyal to her memory. Not only has the king not found a new queen since her death, but the fictional Josen-era nation has suffered under a seven-year marriage ban. If the king can’t be happy no one can be happy.

However, one person in the Korean drama, The Forbidden Marriage, refuses to be unhappy. Ye So-rang, played by Park Ju-hyun, is determined to make her fortune as a matchmaker, even if that means defying the marriage ban, setting up secret meetings between lovers and making some fraudulent love predictions.

When she’s arrested for breaking the ban, she gets out of jail by pretending she can communicate with spirits, including the ghost of the king’s dead wife. That’s when the king, played by Kim Young-dae, takes an interest in her. You can’t move on, she tells him, until you let her spirit go, but he does the opposite. He keeps So-rang by his side so she can channel his lost love.

Thinking of her only as the receptacle for his late wife’s spirit, he doesn’t appreciate So-rang for who she is. Given the rules of k-drama romance, it’s likely So-rang will fall for the king, complicating an already complicated situation. To entangle things further, the king’s best friend, Lee Shin Won, played by Kim Woo-seok, has some history with the matchmaker. The Forbidden Marriage is an occasionally bawdy romantic comedy, but all of the main characters in this story have experienced life-altering loss. Fate brings them together to resolve their losses and help them move on.

Park Hu-hyun previously appeared in the dramas Mouse, Zombie Detective and Extracurricular as well as the film Seoul Vibe. Kim Young-dae starred in Shooting Stars, two seasons of Penthouse and Extraordinary You. Kim Woo-seok appeared in Military Prosecutor Doberman, Rookie Cop and three seasons of Voice.

The MBC drama is based on a webtoon by Chun Zi-hye and currently airs in the US on Kocowa and Viki.

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