Arang and the Magistrate

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Arang and the Magistrate
Arang and the Magistrate-poster.jpg
Promotional poster for Arang and the Magistrate
Also known as Tale of Arang
Genre Fantasy
Format Television series
Written by Jung Yoon-jung
Directed by Kim Sang-ho
Jung Dae-yoon
Starring Lee Joon-gi
Shin Min-ah
Yeon Woo-jin
Composer(s) Kim Hyeon-jong
Country of origin South Korea
Original language(s) Korean
No. of episodes 20
Location(s) Korea
Cinematography Kim Jong-jin
Running time 60 minutes
Wednesdays and Thursdays at 21:55 (KST)
Original channel Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation
Original run 15 August 2012 (2012-08-15) – 18 October 2012 (2012-10-18)
Preceded by I Do, I Do
Followed by Missing You
External links
Korean name
Hangul 아랑사또전
Hanja 使
Revised Romanization Arangsattojeon
McCune–Reischauer Arangsattochŏn

Arang and the Magistrate (Hangul: 아랑사또전; hanja: 阿娘使道傳; RR: Arangsatojeon; also known as Tale of Arang) is a 2012 South Korean historical television drama, starring Lee Joon-gi, Shin Min-ah and Yeon Woo-jin. The period horror-romance is based on the folklore of Arang, who died unjustly and returns as a ghost in order to reveal the circumstances surrounding her death.[1][2][3] It aired on MBC from August 15 to October 18, 2012 on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 21:55 for 20 episodes.[4]


A nobleman named Kim Eun-oh (Lee Joon-gi) comes to town searching for his mother after hearing a rumor that she is staying at the village of Miryang. He has the special ability to hear, see and even touch spirits, but pretends he doesn't because he gets annoyed when spirits come up to him asking for a favor.

Arang (Shin Min-ah) lost all her memories when she became a ghost and is unable to rest in peace until she finds out how she ended up dead. However, after appearing to three magistrates, none of them survive the fright of seeing her. When she finds out that Eun-oh is able to see her, she begs for his help.

At first, Eun-oh rejects her request. However he changes his mind after seeing that Arang is somehow in possession of the hairpin that he gave his mother at their last meeting. He believes that if he helps her, Arang will regain her memories and give him information about his mother. He exasperatedly (then affectionately) nicknames her “Amnesia” and as the town's newly installed magistrate, he teams up with her to investigate the circumstances surrounding her death, which may involve the mysterious nobleman Joo-wal.

Arang and Eun-oh's actions, meanwhile, are being tracked by the Jade Emperor and Yeom-ra, who fear that there is far more going on than an amnesiac ghost and a supernaturally talented magistrate...



The drama is based on famous folklore, as most ghost stories are: During the Joseon era in the city of Miryang, Arang was the pure, beautiful, goodhearted daughter of a magistrate. She grew up without a mother and was raised by a wicked caretaker who conspired to have her raped and ruined by a servant, Baekga. He attacked and she resisted, so he stabbed and killed her, and left her body to rot in the woods. Her father, the magistrate, just believed that she dishonorably eloped with a man and so resigned his position swathed in shame. Thus the legend goes that every time a new magistrate comes to Miryang to fill the position, Arang’s vengeful ghost shows up to tell him her story and he flees in terror. But one day a new magistrate comes to town — a young man by the name of Lee Sang-sa. Arang appears to him like every other magistrate before him, but this man doesn't flee, and instead sympathizes with Arang, and promises to find her killer and avenge her death. Lee Sang-sa has Baekga seized and executed, and thereafter, Arang's spirit ceased to trouble the town.[19]


It was Lee Joon-gi's comeback acting project after being discharged from military service in February 2012.[20][21][5] This also marked the first historical drama for Shin Min-ah and return to television since My Girlfriend Is a Nine-Tailed Fox in 2010.[22][23]

The series was filmed at MBC Dramia in Gyeonggi Province.[24] The first behind-the-scene photos were released on June 22, 2012 showing scenes shot on location in Namyangju on May 23.[25] This was followed by more teaser photos released on July 11, 2012, showing action scenes and an intimate scene of the two leads, Lee and Shin laying down together.[26]

Ahead of the series' premiere, MBC aired the special episode How to Enjoy Arang and the Magistrate 100 Times More on August 8, 2012. It included never-before-seen clips, special behind-the-scenes stories, and detailed the characters and their relationships. It was the first drama special produced by MBC in five years since The Legend in 2007.[27]

The drama's rights was sold to Japan for a record-breaking ₩200 million per episode, which amounts to ₩4 billion for the 20-episode series,[28] the highest per episode for MBC, surpassing the previous record set by Moon Embracing the Sun.[29]


According to AGB Nielsen Media Research, the premiere episode achieved a nation wide rating of 13.3 percent in viewership, almost doubled rival To the Beautiful You on SBS with 7.4 percent for its premiere episode but behind Bridal Mask on KBS with 19.4 percent. It was also 4.2 percent higher than the last episode of its predecessor I Do, I Do.[30]

Episode # Original broadcast date Average audience share
TNmS Ratings[31] AGB Nielsen[32]
Nationwide Seoul National Capital Area Nationwide Seoul National Capital Area
Special episode 8 August 2012 5.1% 5.4% 4.9% (<8.0)%
1 15 August 2012 14.4% 16.8% 13.3% 15.1%
2 16 August 2012 14.3% 16.5% 13.2% 14.4%
3 22 August 2012 16.0% 19.3% 13.2% 14.2%
4 23 August 2012 16.2% 14.4% 15.7%
5 29 August 2012 12.1% 13.3% 12.4% 13.7%
6 30 August 2012 14.0% 16.3% 13.0% 14.4%
7 5 September 2012 13.1% 14.6% 11.7% 12.8%
8 6 September 2012 11.7% 14.2% 10.9% 11.9%
9 12 September 2012 17.0% 19.5% 14.1% 15.3%
10 13 September 2012 20.5% 14.5% 15.1%
11 19 September 2012 15.3% 17.2% 13.8% 14.9%
12 20 September 2012 14.9% 16.0% 13.1% 14.0%
13 26 September 2012 13.9% 15.9% 11.7% 12.9%
14 27 September 2012 14.3% 16.0% 12.5% 13.0%
15 3 October 2012 15.0% 17.7% 13.3% 14.5%
16 4 October 2012 13.9% 16.2% 12.9% 14.4%
17 10 October 2012 13.0% 15.2% 12.6% 13.8%
18 11 October 2012 13.5% 15.1% 11.4% 12.1%
19 17 October 2012 13.2% 14.7% 12.4% 14.0%
20 18 October 2012 13.8% 16.5% 13.8%

Original soundtrack[edit]

Album Tracklisting
Part 1
  • Released: 15 August 2012
Part 2
  • Released: 22 August 2012
Part 3
  • Released: 29 August 2012
Part 4
  • Released: 5 September 2012
Part 5
  • Released: 13 September 2012
Part 6
  • Released: 19 September 2012
Part 7
  • Released: 26 September 2012
Part 8
  • Released: 3 October 2012
Part 9
  • Released: 10 October 2012
Special Edition
  • Released: 17 October 2012
  • Artist: Various artists
  • Format: 2CD


International broadcast[edit]

It aired in the Philippines on the GMA Network beginning January 20, 2014 until March under the title Tale of Arang: A Love Without End.[40][41] It also aired on Japanese cable channel DATV.[42]


  1. ^ Oh, Jean (12 August 2012). "Shin Min-a returns to supernatural in ‘Tale of Arang’". The Korea Herald. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  2. ^ Suk, Monica (21 May 2012). "Lee Joon-gi, Shin Min-ah attend script reading session for upcoming fantasy melodrama". 10Asia. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  3. ^ Suk, Monica (18 June 2012). "Lee Joon-gi reveals teaser for new TV series, says "going more romantic in new show"". 10Asia. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  4. ^ "Fervent Viewers Solving the Mysteries". MBC Global Media. 4 September 2012. Retrieved 2012-11-20. 
  5. ^ a b Kim, Yeon-ji (15 November 2012). "Actor fights for spotlight after Army". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2012-11-20. 
  6. ^ Park, Eun-jii (7 August 2012). "Actor Lee Joon-gi also a stuntman". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  7. ^ Kang, Hye-in (11 August 2012). "Arang and the Magistrate Lee Joon-gi "I hope this will become a standard"". StarN News. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  8. ^ "Interview: Tale of Arang's Lee Jun-ki". MBC Global Media. 5 September 2012. 
  9. ^ Lee, Kyung-nam (2 July 2012). "What Role will Shin Min Ah’s New Tattoo Play in ‘Arang and the Magistrate’?". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  10. ^ Suk, Monica (20 June 2012). "Shin Mina talks Lee Joon-gi's 1st impression". 10Asia. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  11. ^ Ho, Stewart (27 June 2012). "Yeon Woo Jin Dons Hanbok in ‘Arang and the Magistrate’ Previews". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-11-20. 
  12. ^ Ho, Stewart (1 August 2012). "Yeon Woo Jin is a Cold ‘Flower’ Scholar in New Still Cuts". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-11-20. 
  13. ^ Ho, Stewart (29 June 2012). "Character Still Cuts From Lee Joon Gi′s ‘Arang and the Magistrate’ Posted". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  14. ^ Sunwoo, Carla (16 May 2012). "Kwon Oh-joong to team up with Lee Joon-gi and Shin Min-a". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  15. ^ Ho, Stewart (19 July 2012). "Han Jung Su Hunts Ghost Shin Min Ah in ‘Arang and the Magistrate’". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  16. ^ Suk, Monica (27 April 2012). "Yoo Seung-ho confirms cast in Lee Joon-gi's upcoming TV series". 10Asia. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  17. ^ a b Ho, Stewart (20 July 2012). "Yoo Seung Ho′s and Park Jun Gyu′s Stills for ‘Arang and the Magistrate’ Released". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  18. ^ Hong, Grace (14 August 2012). "Yoon Do Hyun Cameos for ‘Arang and the Magistrate’". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  19. ^ Lim, Ju-ri (27 August 2012). "Jokes replace goose bumps as TV audience no pushover". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  20. ^ "이준기, '아랑사또전'으로 안방컴백…"열정 불태울 것"" [Lee Joon-gi to come back with Arang and the Magistrate]. Nate (in Korean). 20 February 2012. Retrieved 2012-06-06. 
  21. ^ Ho, Stewart (18 June 2012). "Lee Joon Gi’s Character Still Cut for Arang and the Magistrate Revealed". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  22. ^ "신민아, 2년 만에 `아랑사또전`으로 드라마 복귀" [Shin Min-ah to return with Arang and the Magistrate]. Nate (in Korean). 24 February 2012. Retrieved 2012-06-06. 
  23. ^ Lee, In-kyung (22 April 2012). "Lee Joon Gi Makes Shin Min Ah Uncomfortable?". enewsWorld (CJ E&M). Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  24. ^ "Dramas Shot in Dramia". MBC Dramia. Retrieved 2014-01-12. 
  25. ^ Suk, Monica (22 June 2012). "Lee Joon-gi, Shin Mina reveal behind-scene footages for new TV series' 1st shooting". 10Asia. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  26. ^ Sunwoo, Carla (13 July 2012). "Lee Joon-gi and Shin Min-a in bed together for a teaser". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  27. ^ Ho, Stewart (8 August 2012). "MBC Releases Drama Poster for ‘Arang and the Magistrate’; Will Air Preview Special Tonight". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-11-10. 
  28. ^ Suk, Monica (29 August 2012). ""Tale of Arang" most expensive TV series sold of all time on MBC". 10Asia. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  29. ^ Sunwoo, Carla (29 August 2012). "Lee Joon-gi’s drama breaks Japanese sales record". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  30. ^ Jeon, Su Mi (16 August 2012). "Arang and the Magistrate Gets Double the Ratings for To the Beautiful You". enewsWorld (CJ E&M). Retrieved 2012-11-10. 
  31. ^ "TNMS Daily Ratings: this links to current day-select the date from drop down menu". TNMS Ratings (in Korean). Retrieved 2012-08-08. 
  32. ^ "AGB Daily Ratings: this links to current day-select the date from drop down menu". AGB Nielsen Media Research (in Korean). Retrieved 2012-08-08. 
  33. ^ Hong, Grace Danbi (22 August 2012). "Shin Min Ah Lends her Voice for ‘Arang and the Magistrate’ OST". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-11-20. 
  34. ^ Sunwoo, Carla (23 August 2012). "Shin Min-a to sing on drama OST". Korea JoongAng Daily. Retrieved 2012-10-15. 
  35. ^ Ho, Stewart (3 September 2012). "Baek Ji Young Sing Lee Joon Gi, Shin Min Ah's Love Theme Song for Arang and the Magistrate". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-11-10. 
  36. ^ Ho, Stewart (13 September 2012). "MC Sniper Takes Part in ‘Arang and the Magistrate’ OST". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-11-10. 
  37. ^ Ho, Stewart (19 September 2012). "Lee Joon Gi to Sing for ‘Arang and the Magistrate’ OST". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-11-10. 
  38. ^ Ho, Stewart (26 September 2012). "K.Will Sings ‘Love Is You’ For ‘Arang and the Magistrate’ OST". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-11-10. 
  39. ^ Ho, Stewart (10 October 2012). "Lee Gi Chan Sings for ‘Arang and the Magistrate’ OST". enewsWorld. CJ E&M. Retrieved 2012-11-10. 
  40. ^ "Tale of Arang: Not your usual avenging ghost story". GMA Network. 9 January 2014. Retrieved 2014-02-01. 
  41. ^ Dimaculangan, Jocelyn (9 January 2014). "GMA Network presents 1Q 2014 shows; downplays comparison of Kambal Sirena with rival show". Philippine Entertainment Portal. Retrieved 2014-02-01. 
  42. ^

External links[edit]