Hong Gil-Dong is a fictitious character from an old Korean novel - The Story of Hong Gil-Dong, written in the Joseon Dynasty by Heo Gyun. This sageuk series is based loosely on the novel and brings out a more playful side to it. It mixes fun elements of the modern world (Gil-Dong's sunglasses and break-dancing at the municipal) and modern Korean slangs. I only managed to catch the last few episodes, unfortunately.
Gil-Dong, played by Kang Ji Hwan is the illegitimate son of a minister. However, because he is told that he cannot accomplish anything in life, he grows up lazy and troublesome. He bumps into a monk who sees potential in him and trains him up in martial arts. Soon, Gil-Dong realises the injustice in this world and begins fighting for the oppressed through his rebel group - the Hwalbindang. He is likened to the Korean version of Robin Hood.
Heo Yinok, the female heroine, is portrayed by Sung Yuri. She is a naive and carefree girl who is unaware of her past - she is a minister's daughter and her parents were murdered. She befriends Gil-Dong and develops feelings for him and he reciprocates her feelings.
Cold and calculating is the first impression that Lee Changhwi gives. The emo prince, played by 21-year-old Jang Geun Suk, carries the burden of a dark past. His older brother, the current king, attempted to murder him. Changhwi is planning a revolution to overthrow the cruel king. Based on the inscription on the Sain Sword, he is the rightful heir to the throne. He forges an alliance with the Hwalbindang and develops feelings for the bubbly Yinok.
Everything's not too bad with a little jest here and there, but I DON'T LIKE THE ENDING. What? Changhwi (turns his back on the Hwalbindang) and his army just wipes out the HBD and they just die. HMM. Not satisfied.
All the characters are well-portrayed but I like Jang Geun Suk the best, although his role does not require much expression except for being emo most of the time. He's young and although I'm not the type for real-life bishounen, Jang Geun Suk is an exception. :) And he sings and plays the guitar. :) Plus point.
Yeah. I have to admit. Kinda pretty boy.
But it don't matter. 'Cause me likey.