The second episode of “Youn’s Stay” -- a spinoff from reality TV show “Youn’s Restaurant” -- marked a viewership rating of 10.2 percent, according to Nielsen Korea on Saturday.
During the show that aired Friday night, the cast served traditional Korean drink makgeolli, as well as Korean foods they had learned to make in the previous episode, including bugak (seaweed chips), tteokgalbi (beef patties), jeon (savory pancakes) and vegan gungjung tteokbokki (royal stir-fried rice cakes) for the hanok guests’ first dinner.
Despite criticism that the show is little else than a rehash of director Na Young-seok’s previous hit tvN reality show series “Youn’s Restaurant,” the show’s first two episodes proved the ability to attract viewers.
“Youn’s Stay” is an alternative show the tvN production team came up with after it scrapped plans to film the third season of “Youn’s Restaurant,“ which featured a group of Korean celebrities opening Korean restaurants in small towns overseas.
The first episode of “Youn Stay” got a rating of 8.2 percent, which is considered high for a cable network program in Korea.
Although the show kept the same cast and theme of promoting Korean culture to foreigners, the minor changes made the show interesting to viewers.
New cast member and actor Choi Woo-sik, known for his role as Ki-woo in “Parasite,” was also one of the key contributors to making “Youn’s Stay” special.
In the second episode, guests were surprised and excited to find out that Choi, who had been guiding them to their traditional Korean accommodations in the hanok, was the one who appears in the Oscar-winning film.
“It would be a total dream come true to stay in this hanok with all these famous actors,” one online commenter wrote about the scene.
Veteran actor Youn’s cynical but caring personality also shined in Friday’s episode, which often saw guests erupting in laughter.
When one of the guests joked about bugak, a food they were not familiar with, and asked “You are not going to poison us?” Youn showed her humor by responding “Not tonight. Maybe, tomorrow.”
Meanwhile, Youn is being seen as a strong contender for this year’s Oscars. She has so far won 11 best supporting actress awards from US film critics circles and festivals, including the San Diego Film Critics Society, Music City Film Critics Association and the DiscussingFilm Critic Awards.
By Song Seung-hyun (firstname.lastname@example.org