The Penthouse: War in Life

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The Penthouse: War in Life
The Penthouse TV series.jpg
Promotional poster
Also known as
Created byChoi Young-hoon
SBS Production plan
Written byKim Soon-ok
Directed by
  • Joo Dong-min
  • Park Po-ram
ComposerKim Joon-seok
Country of originSouth Korea
Original languageKorean
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes21
  • Kim Sang-hyun
  • Jo Hyeon-jin
Running time80-95 minutes
Production companies
Original networkSBS TV
Picture format1080i (HDTV)
Audio formatDolby Digital
Original releaseOctober 26, 2020 (2020-10-26) –
present (present)
External links

The Penthouse: War in Life[3] (Korean펜트하우스; lit. Penthouse) is a South Korean television series starring Lee Ji-ah, Kim So-yeon, Eugene,[4] Um Ki-joon, Park Eun-seok and Yoon Jong-hoon.[5][6] The series, directed by Joo Dong-min and written by Kim Soon-ok,[7] spins the story of real estate and education war, a desire to be number one. It depicts the solidarity and revenge of women who had no choice but to become evil women to protect themselves and their children.[8][9] It premiered on SBS TV on October 26, 2020.[10] The first look teaser was released on September 29, 2020.[11] The teaser for Season 2 was released on January 12, 2021.[12][13]

At the end of season 1, the series with 5.3 million viewers is placed at 8th rank in the Top 50 Korean television series per nationwide viewers.[14] The series achieved the number-one position in all-channel mini-series, 21 times in a row from its first broadcast on October 26, 2020 to the last episode on January 5, 2021.[15]

Series overview[edit]

SeasonEpisodesOriginally airedTime slotAve. viewership
First airedLast aired
121October 26, 2020 (2020-10-26)January 5, 2021 (2021-01-05)Monday–Tuesday at 22:00 (KST)3.35
212February 19, 2021 (2021-02-19)[16]TBAFriday–Saturday at 22:00 (KST)TBA


Season 1[edit]

Penthouse tells the story of rich families living in Hera Palace and their children at Cheong-ah Arts School.

Shim Su-ryeon (Lee Ji-ah) is a wealthy and elegant woman who has a tragic past. Her husband is Joo Dan-tae (Uhm Ki-joon), a successful businessman. She later learns that he is hiding something from her.

Oh Yoon-hee (Eugene) comes from a poor family background. She has bad blood with Cheon Seo-jin (Kim So-yeon) since high school. They get involved in a love triangle relationship with Ha Yoon-cheol (Yoon Jong-hoon).

All of them have big ambitions and desire for their children and would do anything to achieve it. However, their lives begin to crumble as a young mysterious woman named Min Seol-ah (Jo Soo-min) was found dead in their apartment which leads to everybody getting suspected for the murder.



  • Lee Ji-ah as Shim Su-ryeon, a graceful, elegant, dignified woman who has never once been poor in her life and is a bona-fide penthouse queen.
  • Kim So-yeon as Cheon Seo-jin, a wealthy woman who is the epitome of showy and arrogant and who harbors a warped ambition.
  • Eugene as Oh Yoon-hee, who has never once experienced wealth and who has lived her life with gritted teeth, having done any and every job she had the chance to do. Oh Yoon-hee does everything in her power to enter high-society so that her child can have a better chance at success.


Shim Su-ryeon's family[edit]

  • Um Ki-joon as Joo Dan-tae, husband of Shim Su-ryeon, a genius of real estate who rakes in money with every investment he makes.
  • Kim Young-dae as Joo Seok-hoon, Dan-tae's twin son
  • Han Ji-hyun as Joo Seok-kyung, Dan-tae's twin daughter
  • Na So-ye as Joo Hye-in, Su-ryeon's daughter
  • Jo Soo-min as Anna Lee/Min Seol-ah, Joo Seok-hoon and Joo Seok-kyung's tutor/biological daughter of Shim Su-ryeon

Cheon Seo-jin's family[edit]

  • Yoon Jong-hoon as Ha Yoon-cheol, husband of Cheon Seo-jin, an ambitious man who believes that a man must hold wealth and power. He is the head of surgery in the VIP department of a hospital.
  • Choi Ye-bin as Ha Eun-byeol, Seo-jin and Yoon-cheol's daughter
  • Jung Sung-mo as Cheon Myung-soo, Seo-jin's father
  • Ha Min as Seo-jin's mother
  • Shin Seo-hyun as Cheon Seo-young, Seo-jin's younger sister
  • Ahn Tae-hwan as Seo-young's husband, Seo-jin's brother-in-law

Oh Yoon-hee's family[edit]

  • Kim Hyun-soo as Bae Ro-na, Yoon-hee's daughter
  • Hwang Young-hee as Yoon-hee's mother-in-law
  • Unknown as Bae Ho-cheol, Yoon-hee's ex-husband, Ro-na's father

Kang Ma-ri and family[edit]

  • Shin Eun-kyung as Kang Ma-ri, a woman who has recently come into wealth and leads a secretive double life.
  • Jin Ji-hee as Yoo Jenny, Ma-ri's daughter[17]
  • Heo Sung-tae as Yoo Dong-pil, Ma-ri's husband, Jenny's father. Currently in prison.

Lee Kyu-jin and family[edit]

  • Bong Tae-kyu as Lee Kyu-jin, the only son and momma's boy of a wealthy family of judges and lawyers, and is himself a lawyer.
  • Yoon Joo-hee as Go Sang-ah, wife of Lee Kyu-jin and a former announcer.
  • Lee Tae-vin as Lee Min-hyeok, Kyu-jin and Sang-ah's son
  • Seo Hye-rin as Wang Mi-ja, Kyu-jin's mother


  • Park Eun-seok as Gu Ho-dong/Logan Lee, a nice PE teacher at Cheong-ah Arts School, who fights for justice and Anna’s older adoptive brother.
  • Byeon Woo-min as Congressman Jo Sang-heon
  • Ha Do-kwon as Ma Du-ki, music teacher at Cheong-ah Arts School
  • Kim Dong-kyu as Secretary Jo
  • Han Seung-soo as Orphanage Director Min Hyung-sik
  • Lee Cheol-min as Yoon Tae-joo

Special appearances[edit]

Season 1[edit]

  • Kim Byung-hyun as Joo Dan-tae's best friend pitcher[18]
  • Ki Eun-se as Journalist Kim[19]
  • Kim Sa-kwon as Detective in charge of Oh Yoon-hee's investigation[20]
  • Ki Tae-Hwa as Su-ryeon's ex-husband, Seol-ah's father.

Season 2[edit]

Character appearances[edit]

Character Portrayed by Series
Season 1 Season 2 [23]
Shim Su-ryeon Lee Ji-ah Main
Cheon Seo-jin Kim So-yeon
Oh Yoon-hee Eugene
Joo Dan-tae Um Ki-joon Recurring
Ha Yoon-cheol Yoon Jong-hoon
Lee Kyu-jin Bong Tae-kyu
Kang Ma-ri Shin Eun-kyung
Go Sang-ah Yoon Joo-hee
Joo Seok-hoon Kim Young-dae
Joo Seok-kyung Han Ji-hyun
Ha Eun-byeol Choi Ye-bin
Bae Ro-na Kim Hyun-soo
Yoo Jenny Jin Ji-hee
Lee Min-hyeok Lee Tae-bin
Gu Ho-dong/Logan Lee Park Eun-seok
Ma Du-ki Ha Do-kwon
Secretary Jo Kim Dong-kyu
Joo Hye-in Na So-ye Guest TBA
Anna Lee/Min Seol-ah Jo Soo-min
Cheon Myung-soo Jung Sung-mo
Seo-jin's mother Ha Min TBA
Cheon Seo-young Shin Seo-hyun
Seo-young's husband Ahn Tae-hwan
Yoon-hee's mother-in-law Hwang Young-hee
Yoo Dong-pil Heo Sung-tae
Wang Mi-ja Seo Hye-rin
Congressman Jo Sang-heon Byeon Woo-min Guest
Orphanage Director Min Hyung-sik Han Seung-soo
Yoon Tae-joo Lee Cheol-min
Su-ryeon's ex-husband, Seol-ah's father Lee Min-ho
Journalist Kim Ki Eun-se Guest TBA
Detective in charge of Oh Yoon-hee's investigation Kim Sa-kwon



The production cost of this series is 31 billion won, 670 million won per episode.[24] In September 2019, planning and preparation for the series started.[25]

Season 1 was extended by one episode to enable the series to end on a Tuesday.[26]

On November 24, 2020, the series was officially renewed for a second and third seasons of twelve episodes each. It was also announced that the final seasons would air on the Friday–Saturday time slot compared to the first season which aired on Monday–Tuesday time slot.[27]


Eugene was cast in one of the lead roles, consequently returning to the small screen after a five-year hiatus.[4] Casting for the series started in December 2019,[28] and finalized in January 2020.[29] Due to scheduling conflicts, Shin Sung-rok left the cast in February.[30] Originally scheduled to take place in February 2020, the first script reading was pushed back to March due to COVID-19 pandemic.[31] Um Ki-joon joined the cast in April.[32]


Filming was halted on November 24, 2020 as one of the supporting actors was tested positive for COVID-19. The next day, it was reported that Um Ki-joon, Park Eun-seok and Bong Tae-gyu tested negative for COVID-19.[33]


The prelude teaser was released by Seoul Broadcasting System on September 22, 2020.[34] The teaser was termed as "[Mood teaser] a brilliant bloody prelude".[35][36] Season 1 premiered on October 26, 2020 on SBS TV and airs every Monday and Tuesday at 22:00 KST.

Original soundtrack[edit]

Season 1[edit]

Part 1[edit]

Released on December 1, 2020 (2020-12-01)[37]
1."Life"Lee Ha-jinZigZag NoteHEDY3:34
2."Life" (Inst.) ZigZag Note 3:34
Total length:7:08

Part 2[edit]

Released on December 17, 2020 (2020-12-17)[38]
1."Crown"Ranic, Lee Da-hyeonAdvanced, Seong Gi-jun (RYS), B-right (RYS)HaJin3:02
2."Crown" (Inst.) Advanced, Seong Gi-jun (RYS), B-right (RYS) 3:02
Total length:6:04

Part 3[edit]

Released on January 5, 2021 (2021-01-05)[39]
1."Desire"Glody, Han Seung-heeGlodyHan Seung-hee3:02
2."Desire" (Inst.) Glody 3:02
Total length:6:04

Part 4[edit]

Released on January 7, 2021 (2021-01-07)[40][41]
1."You left to me (Feat. O'z Mood)"
  • Burning Sweet Potato
  • Ha Jin
  • Seo Dong-hwi
  • Ahn Su-jin
  • Burning Sweet Potato
  • Ha Jin
  • Jeong Yeon-tae
2."You left to me" (Inst.)   3:22
Total length:6:44


Commercial performance[edit]

Going by big data analytics firm Good Data Corporation, as of second week of December, The Penthouse: War in Life is at first place with 27.82% surge in media mention.[42] As per big data analytics firm Good Data Corporation's ranking for the third week of December, The Penthouse: War in Life led with a 27.66% surge in media mentions for the fourth straight week.[43]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Name of the award ceremony, year presented, category, nominee of the award, and the result of the nomination
Award ceremony Year Category Nominee Result Ref.
SBS Drama Awards 2020 Grand Prize (Daesang) Kim So-yeon Nominated [44]
Top Excellence Award, Actor in a Mid-Length/Long Drama Um Ki-joon Won
Top Excellence Award, Actress in a Mid-Length/Long Drama Eugene Won
Kim So-yeon Won
Lee Ji-ah Won
Excellence Award, Actor in a Mid-Length/Long Drama Bong Tae-gyu Won
Yoon Jong-hoon Won
Excellence Award, Actress in a Mid-Length/Long Drama Shin Eun-kyung Won
Best Supporting Actor Park Eun-seok Won
Best Supporting Actress Yoon Joo-hee Nominated
Best Supporting Team The Penthouse: War in Life Nominated
Best Young Actress Kim Hyun-soo Won
Best New Actor Ha Do-kwon Nominated
Kim Young-dae Nominated
Best New Actress Jo Soo-min Nominated

Audience viewership[edit]

The Penthouse: War in Life : South Korea viewers per episode (millions)
SeasonEpisode numberAverage
Source: Audience measurement performed nationwide by Nielsen Media Research.[14]


  1. ^ "Penthouse [Title in the URL]". SBS. Retrieved October 27, 2020.
  2. ^ [펜트하우스] 무드티저 '2020 김순옥 작가 신작, 화려한 핏빛 서막이 오르다 / The Penthouse Teaser. YouTube. SBS Now. Retrieved October 27, 2020.
  3. ^ Lim, Jang-won (October 22, 2020). "SBS drama 'The Penthouse: War in Life' to show row over education, real estate". The Korea Times. Retrieved October 27, 2020.
  4. ^ a b "유진, 5년 만에 드라마 복귀… SBS '펜트하우스' 출연" [Eugene returns to the drama after 5 years... Appeared in SBS'Penthouse']. 머니S. September 6, 2020.
  5. ^ "Lee Ji-ah, Kim So-yeon and Eugene to Star in "Penthouse: War In Life"". HanCinema.
  6. ^ "Cast Updated for the Upcoming Korean Drama "Penthouse"". News Break. February 10, 2020.
  7. ^ "스카이데일리, 김순옥 작가 새 드라마 '펜트하우스' SBS월화극 편성 확정" [Kim Soon-ok's new drama'Penthouse' SBS Moonhwageuk confirmed]. Skye Daily.
  8. ^ 기자, 하나영 (September 8, 2020). "진지희, SBS 새 월화드라마 '펜트하우스' 출연…신은경과 모녀 호흡" [Jin Ji-hee appeared on SBS's new monthly drama'Penthouse'... Shin Eun-kyung and mother-daughter breath]. Digital ChoSun.
  9. ^ Park, Hyun-sook (September 2, 2020). "'펜트하우스' 김순옥 작가×주동민 감독, 집값·교육 1번지에서 벌어지는 자식을 위한 여자들의 연대와 복수!" ['Penthouse' writer Kim Soon-ok x director Joo Dong-min, women's solidarity and revenge for their children at No. 1 house price and education!]. Sports Khan.
  10. ^ "Penthouse: War In Life (Korean Drama - 2020) - 펜트하우스". HanCinema.
  11. ^ [1차티저]대한민국을 뒤흔들 김순옥표 부동산×교육 서스펜스! '펜트하우스'|펜트하우스(penthouse)|SBS DRAMA. SBS DRAMA. YouTube. September 28, 2020.
  12. ^ [최초공개 티저] 복수는 아직 시작되지 않았다 '펜트하우스2'_ 2.19 첫방송 | 펜트하우스2(Penthouse2) | SBS DRAMA. SBS Drama. YouTube. January 12, 2021. Retrieved January 13, 2021.
  13. ^ [선공개] 김소연, 그녀에게 조여오는 어둠 속 발자국은 누구!? | 펜트하우스2(Penthouse2) | SBS DRAMA. SBS Drama. YouTube. January 12, 2021. Retrieved January 13, 2021.
  14. ^ a b c d "Nielsen Korea". AGB Nielsen Media Research. Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  15. ^ Kim So-yeon (January 6, 2021). "'펜트하우스' 결말, 이렇게? 이지아·유진 생존 여부 시즌2 기약 [종합]" ['Penthouse' ending, like this? Jia Lee and Eugene will survive season 2 [Comprehensive]]. 10 Asia. Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  16. ^ Yonhap (January 7, 2021). "Netflix, tvN come up with star-studded series for 2021". The Korea Herald. Retrieved January 9, 2021.
  17. ^ "Jin Ji-hee Confirms "The Penthouse"". News Break. September 11, 2020.
  18. ^ Bong-gyu, Park (December 6, 2020). "펜트하우스' 특별 출연 김병현, 첫 드라마 도전" ['Penthouse' special appearance Kim Byung-hyun, first drama challenge]. Kookmin Ilbo (in Korean). Retrieved December 8, 2020.
  19. ^ Jang Jin-ri (December 30, 2020). "[단독]기은세, '펜트하우스' 투입…시즌1 종영 앞두고 새로운 전개맞나" [[Exclusive] Eunse Ki, put in'Penthouse'... Is it a new development ahead of the end of Season 1?]. Sport TV News (in Korean). Retrieved December 30, 2020.
  20. ^ Lee Min-ji (January 4, 2020). "'펜트하우스' 김사권 특별출연 "재미있게 촬영했다"(공식)" ['Penthouse' Kim Sa Kwon special appearance "I took filming with fun" (Official)]. Newsen (in Korean).
  21. ^ a b Seok Jae-hyeon (January 4, 2021). "펜트하우스' 측 "전진♥류이서, 시즌2 1회 특별출연…2일 촬영" (공식)". Newsen (in Korean). Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  22. ^ Jang Woo-sung (January 21, 2021). "이상우, '펜트하우스2' 특별출연…아내 김소연 특급 외조 [공식입장]". imbc (in Korean). Retrieved January 21, 2021.
  23. ^ Kim Soo-jin (January 5, 2021). "이지아 김소연 유진 엄기준, '펜트하우스' 시즌1 종영소감". MT Star News (in Korean). Retrieved January 6, 2021.
    Lee Se-hyun (January 6, 2021). "'펜트하우스' 박은석, 시즌2에도 강렬 존재감 예고". Kyunghyang (in Korean). Retrieved January 6, 2021.
    Ji Seung-hoon (January 5, 2021). "'펜트하우스' 한지현 "펜트하우스 만난 건 큰 행운" 종영 소감". YTN (in Korean). Retrieved January 6, 2021.
    Ji Seung-hoon (January 5, 2021). "'펜트하우스' 최예빈 "매회, 본방으로 모니터...많이 배웠던 시간" 종영 소감". YTN (in Korean). Retrieved January 6, 2021.
    Jang Su-jeong (January 6, 2021). "'펜트하우스' 김현수 "시즌2에선 새로운 배로나 보여주고파" [인터뷰M]". iMBC (in Korean). Retrieved January 6, 2021.
    Kim Seung-hyun (January 6, 2021). "'펜트하우스' 진지희 "시즌2? 제니의 또다른 매력 보여드릴 것"". YTN (in Korean). Retrieved January 6, 2021.
    Tae Yuna (January 6, 2021). "'펜트하우스' 하도권, 시즌2 출연한다…"쉽지 않은 도전"". TenAsia (in Korean). Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  24. ^ "펜트하우스(드라마) - 나무위키 (production cost)". Retrieved October 26, 2020.
  25. ^ Staff Reporter (December 29, 2019). "Details About SBS Upcoming Drama "Penthouse"". KDramaStars.
  26. ^ a b Kim, Jinseok (November 24, 2020). "[단독]'펜트하우스' 시즌1 21부작… 시즌2·3는 12부작" [[Exclusive]'Penthouse' Season 1 21 episodes... Seasons 2 and 3 are 12 episodes]. Mnews. JoongAng Ilbo.
  27. ^ Schwartz, William (November 24, 2020). "[HanCinema's News] Second and Third Seasons Confirmed for "The Penthouse"". HanCinema. Retrieved November 25, 2020.
  28. ^ "SBS Drama "Penthouse: War In Life" Courting Lee Ji-ah, Eugene, Shin Sung-rok and Bong Tae-gyu @ HanCinema :: The Korean Movie and Drama Database".
  29. ^ "Kim So Yeon, Shin Eun Kyung, and Oh Man Seok Also Join Star-packed Cast of SBS Drama Penthouse | A Koala's Playground".
  30. ^ "Here is the real reason behind 'The Last Empress' star Shin Sung Rok quitting the drama 'Penthouse'". International Business Times, Singapore Edition. March 6, 2020.
  31. ^ Schwartz, William (February 22, 2020). "[HanCinema's News] "Penthouse: War In Life" Script Reading Delayed Owing to COVID-19 @ HanCinema :: The Korean Movie and Drama Database". HanCinema.
  32. ^ "Uhm Ki Joon Takes Lead Role in "Penthouse"". April 3, 2020.
  33. ^ Lim, Jang-won (November 25, 2020). "COVID-19 plagues drama productions". The Korea Herald.
  34. ^ [무드티저]‘펜트하우스’ 2020 김순옥 작가 신작, 화려한 핏빛 서막이 오르다ㅣ펜트하우스(penthouse)ㅣSBS DRAMA. SBS DRAMA. YouTube. September 21, 2020.
  35. ^ "[무드티저]'펜트하우스' 2020 김순옥 작가 신작, 화려한 핏빛 서막이 오르다" [[Mood teaser]'Penthouse' 2020's new work by Kim Soon-ok, a brilliant bloody prelude]. SBS.
  36. ^ Bae, Aurora (September 30, 2020). "SBS's 'The Penthouse' exposes wretched side of rich woman's world in first teaser". Kdramapal.
  37. ^ "펜트하우스 OST Part.1" [Penthouse OST Part.1]. Melon. Retrieved December 6, 2020.
  38. ^ "펜트하우스 OST Part.2" [Penthouse OST Part.2]. Melon. Retrieved December 17, 2020.
  39. ^ "펜트하우스 OST Part.3" [Penthouse OST Part.3]. Melon. Retrieved January 5, 2021.
  40. ^ "펜트하우스 OST Part.4" [Penthouse OST Part.4]. Melon. Retrieved January 12, 2021.
  41. ^ "The Penthouse (Original Television Soundtrack), Pt.4 - Single". Apple Music. Retrieved January 15, 2021.
  42. ^ Schwartz, William (December 16, 2020). ""The Penthouse" Tops Good Data Report". HanCinema. Retrieved December 29, 2020.
  43. ^ Schwartz, William (December 23, 2020). ""The Penthouse" Continues to Top the Good Data Report". HanCinema. Retrieved December 29, 2020.
  44. ^ Kim, Jong-eun (January 1, 2021). "'남궁민 대상→'펜트하우스' 9관왕, SBS 빛낸 두 작품 [종합]" ['Namgoongmin Grand Prize→'Penthouse' 9 Crowns, SBS Shine Two Works [Comprehensive]]. TV Daily (in Korean).
  45. ^ TNmS ratings:
  46. ^ "'펜트하우스'·'불청', 오늘(17일) 한국vs카타르 축구 중계로 결방" ['Penthouse' and'Unbelievable', today (17th) Korea vs. Qatar soccer broadcast]. November 17, 2020.
  47. ^ TNmS ratings:

External links[edit]