The Glory (TV series)

2022–2023 South Korean television series

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The Glory

Promotional poster
Hangul
더 글로리
Revised Romanization Deo geullori
McCune–Reischauer Tŏ kŭllori
Genre .mw-parser-output .plainlist ol,.mw-parser-output .plainlist ul{line-height:inherit;list-style:none;margin:0;padding:0}.mw-parser-output .plainlist ol li,.mw-parser-output .plainlist ul li{margin-bottom:0}

Written by Kim Eun-sook[1]
Directed by Ahn Gil-ho[1]
Starring
Music by
  • Kim Jun-seok (movie closer)
  • Jung Se-rin (movie closer)
Country of origin South Korea
Original language Korean
No. of episodes 16
Production
Executive producers
  • Kim Seon-tae
  • Kim Beom-rae
  • Kim Eun-sook
  • Ahn Gil-ho (CP)
Producers
  • Yoon Ha-rim
  • Kim Young-kyu
Cinematography Jang Jong-kyung
Editors
  • Han Ji-woo
  • Park Eun-mi
Running time 47–72 minutes
Production companies Hwa&Dam Pictures[1]
Studio Dragon
Original release
Network Netflix
Release December 30, 2022 (2022-12-30) –
March 10, 2023 (2023-03-10)

The Glory (Korean더 글로리) is a South Korean revenge psychological thriller streaming television series written by Kim Eun-sook and directed by Ahn Gil-ho for Netflix. Song Hye-kyo, Lee Do-hyun, Lim Ji-yeon, Yeom Hye-ran, Park Sung-hoon, and Jung Sung-il round out the ensemble cast.

The series was divided into two parts: Part 1 was released on December 30, 2022,[1][2] and Part 2 was released on March 10, 2023,[3][4] both to critical acclaim and viewership success. It received eight nominations at the 59th Baeksang Arts Awards, winning three – Best Drama, Best Actress for Song Hye-kyo, and Best Supporting Actress for Lim Ji-yeon.

Premise[edit]

Moon Dong-eun, a former victim of school violence plans and seeks revenge on her bullies after taking up a job as a homeroom teacher at the elementary school of the bully leader’s child (Ha Ye-sol).[5] Some scenes are based on a true event in 2006 when a group of middle schoolers from Cheongju, South Korea, extorted money from their classmate for about a month, repeatedly beating and burning her using objects in the process.[6][7]

Cast[edit]

Cast members, writer and director at a December 2022 press conference. From left to right: Park Sung-hoon, Lim Ji-yeon, Lee Do-hyun, Song Hye-kyo, Yeom Hye-ran, Jung Sung-il, writer Kim Eun-sook and director Ahn Gil-ho.

Main[edit]

The homeroom teacher of Class 1-2 of Semyeong Elementary School. During her high school days, she was the target of constant bullying and physical abuse by Yeon-jin and her group. She eventually quit school and then started an elaborate plan of revenge on Yeon-jin’s group.
A plastic surgeon who worked at the Seoul Joo General Hospital, where his mother is the director. He teaches Dong-eun Go.
A weather presenter at a television station. She led the group of delinquents in bullying and physically abusing Dong-eun during high school.
A housekeeper who worked at the home of Semyeong Foundation’s president. She, along with her daughter, suffers from domestic violence perpetrated by her husband. She helps Dong-eun in the latter’s revenge by becoming her sleuth, in exchange for the killing of her husband.
The colour blind heir of a country club. He was part of the group that constantly abused Dong-eun.
Yeon-jin’s husband and CEO of Jaepyeong Construction. He is caught in the long-planned trap of Dong-eun and encounters a Pandora’s Box that threatens the happiness of his family. He is the complete opposite of his wife and detests her misdeeds and unremorseful behavior.

Supporting[edit]

Sunghan High School (2004–2006)[edit]

A flight attendant whose parents are owners of a dry cleaning shop. She was part of the group that constantly abused Dong-eun, although she was one of the lowest authority in the group as she lacked a rich background.
A member of the choir of a church led by her wealthy pastor father. Growing up, she developed a severe drug addiction and has a career as a famous abstract painter. She was part of the group that constantly abused Dong-eun.
He was part of the group that constantly abused Dong-eun. Growing up, without the connections or education afforded by financial privilege, he works as an errand boy for Jae-joon and a drug dealer for Sa-ra.
  • Lee So-ee as Yoon So-hee[16]
A Sunghan High School student who was the target of constant bullying and abuse by Yeon-jin’s group before Dong-eun became the next target.
  • Jeon Soo-ah as Ahn Jung-mi[17]
The school nurse at Sunghan High School. She was the only adult who supported Dong-eun at school.
  • Park Yoon-hee as Kim Jong-moon[18]
Dong-eun’s former homeroom teacher at Sunghan High School. He showed favouritism toward Yeon-jin’s group and abused Dong-eun because he had taken bribes from their parents.
A shop assistant at a boutique owned by Jae-joon. During her high school days, she became the next target of constant bullying by Yeon-jin’s group after Dong-eun quit school.

People around Park Yeon-jin[edit]

  • Oh Ji-yul as Ha Ye-sol[20]
The daughter of Yeon-jin and Do-yeong, although her biological father is Jae-joon. She is colour blind. She attends Semyeong Elementary School Class 1-2.
Yeon-jin’s mother who believes in Korean shamanism.
  • Lee Hae-young as Shin Young-joon[19]
A high-ranking police officer who is Young-ae’s longtime friend. He and his subordinates work behind the scenes to cover up Yeon-jin’s crimes.

People around Moon Dong-eun[edit]

Dong-eun’s mother who worked at a barbershop. She abandoned her daughter in favour of bribes. Has severe alcohol dependency.
  • Heo Dong-won as Chu Jeong-ho[23]
A teacher in Semyeong Elementary School who has tensions with Dong-eun.
  • Kang Gil-woo as Kim Soo-han[18]
Dong-eun’s senior who is also Jong-moon’s son.
Manager of an estate office and owner of Eden Villa in Semyeong, where Dong-eun rents an apartment.
  • Son Na-young as Goo Sung-hee
A travel agency employee who worked at the same factory with Dong-eun.

People around Kang Hyeon-nam[edit]

Hyeon-nam’s daughter, who, along her mother, suffers from physical abuse by her father.
  • Ryu Seong-hyun as Lee Seok-jae[25]
Hyeon-nam’s husband, who physically abused his daughter and wife. He also gambled and became an alcoholic.

People around Joo Yeo-jeong[edit]

Yeo-jeong’s mother who is also the current director of Seoul Joo General Hospital.
  • Cho Min-wook as Kim Jong-heon[27]
Yeo-jeong’s senior.
  • Choi Kwang-il as Joo Sung-hak
Yeo-jeong’s father, and was the chief director of Seoul Joo General Hospital. He was murdered by Yeong-cheon.

Others[edit]

A pastor and Sa-ra’s father.
  • Son Kang-kuk as Choi Dong-kyu[29]
A detective.
  • Noh Kyung (Part 2)[30]
  • Oh Min-ae as Do-yeong’s mother[31]
  • Kim Seon-hwa as Lee Sa-ra’s mother[32]
  • Jeon Jin-oh as subordinate who help police officers[33]

Special appearance[edit]

A patient who murdered Yeo-jeong’s father.
Hye-jeong’s lover.
  • Kim Seung-hwa as Hye-jeong’s junior[37]

Episodes[edit]

.mw-parser-output .sr-only{border:0;clip:rect(0,0,0,0);clip-path:polygon(0px 0px,0px 0px,0px 0px);height:1px;margin:-1px;overflow:hidden;padding:0;position:absolute;width:1px;white-space:nowrap}Series overview
Season Episodes Originally released
1 16 8 December 30, 2022 (2022-12-30)
8 March 10, 2023 (2023-03-10)
No.
overall
No. in
season
Episode Directed by Written by Original release date
Part 1
1 1 Episode 1 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook December 30, 2022 (2022-12-30)
In 2004, 17-year-old high school student Moon Dong-eun is ruthlessly bullied and tortured by a group of her rich peers, led by Park Yeon-jin and including Jeon Jae-joon, Choi Hye-jeong, Lee Sa-ra and Son Myeong-oh. Dong-eun files a police report but Yeon-jin’s mother, Young-ae, uses her connections with Young-joon, a high-ranking police officer, to cover up the incident. Dong-eun applies to drop out of school, listing the group as the reason. Her teacher Jong-moon beats her in front of other teachers for “lying”. Yeon-jin’s mother bribes Dong-eun’s mother to change the reason on the form to “maladjustment“. After taking the money, Dong-eun’s mother abandons her. Before moving away, Dong-eun vows to the group that “they’ll meet again”. Over the next few years, she works at a factory, befriends fellow worker Sung-hee, earns a GED and enrolls into university to study education. In 2022, an adult Dong-eun watches Yeon-jin, now a weather presenter, on television, surrounded by photographs of those who have wronged her.
2 2 Episode 2 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook December 30, 2022 (2022-12-30)
While studying, Dong-eun gathers information on the group over the years. Jae-joon inherits a country club and upscale clothing boutique and has a fling with Yeon-jin; Hye-jeong becomes a flight attendant and has unrequited feelings for Jae-joon; Sa-ra becomes a drug addict and famous artist; Myeong-oh becomes Jae-joon’s lackey and Sa-ra’s drug dealer. Dong-eun meets Joo Yeo-jeong, a medical intern who has a crush on her and teaches her the game Go. Yeon-jin marries Ha Do-yeong, the CEO of a large construction company, and has a daughter, Ha Ye-sol. After graduating, Dong-eun abruptly leaves without telling Yeo-jeong. She meets Myeong-oh and tells him she has information he can use to make money. She leases an apartment in Semyeong overlooking Yeon-jin’s house. One night, while searching the bins at the house of Semyeong Foundation’s chairman, Dong-eun is confronted by the housekeeper, Kang Hyeon-nam. Rather than turn Dong-eun in, Hyeon-nam offers to help Dong-eun if she kills her abusive husband.
3 3 Episode 3 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook December 30, 2022 (2022-12-30)
Dong-eun hires Hyeon-nam as an assistant to gather information on the group. She realizes that Ye-sol is colorblind, a trait shared by Jae-joon. Dong-eun plays Go at the club Do-yeong goes to, where her skill intrigues Do-yeong. She encounters Yeo-jeong by chance, now a plastic surgeon; he confesses that she helped him through a dark time. Dong-eun tells Myeong-oh that she knows who pushed Yoon So-hee, a student bullied by the group before they targeted Dong-eun, to her death. She offers up that information in exchange for his help; he gives Dong-eun Jae-joon’s hair samples. The bullies gather at the school for an alumni awards ceremony, where Dong-eun meets them again. Dong-eun uses the information Hyeon-nam gathered to blackmail the chairman of the Semyeong school district for a transfer to teach at the elementary school Ye-sol attends.
4 4 Episode 4 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook December 30, 2022 (2022-12-30)
Yeon-jin learns that her daughter’s new homeroom teacher is Dong-eun and panics. Yeon-jin also learns that their now elderly teacher, Jong-moon, died after meeting Dong-eun. Dong-eun had told Soo-han, Jong-moon’s son, that she intended to publicly expose Jong-moon’s treatment of her. Soo-han then killed his father so as not to jeopardize his own career prospects. Dong-eun receives information about So-hee from Jung-mi, the ex-school nurse. Myeong-oh visits the mortuary, discovering that it’s the location of So-hee’s body, her parents having refused to claim it; they dispute the police’s ruling of suicide. Intrigued, Do-yeong plays with Dong-eun at the Go club, just as she had intended.
5 5 Episode 5 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook December 30, 2022 (2022-12-30)
Dong-eun reveals to Yeon-jin that she knows about Ye-sol’s color blindness. Jae-joon receives an envelope containing Ye-sol’s toothbrush. Yeon-jin hires her mother’s friend Young-joon, a corrupt detective, to gather information on Dong-eun. Hyeon-nam steals Hye-jeong’s phone and gives it to Dong-eun. Dong-eun blackmails Sa-ra for cash. She also contacts Yeo-jeong after years of silence, and apologizes for her treatment of him. Yeo-jeong, who is still in love with her, cheekily tells her he’d be a good partner. She replies that she does not need a prince but an “executioner”. Dong-eun tells Myeong-oh who pushed So-hee and he contacts the group and Do-yeong, planning to flee to Russia. However, he is attacked by an unknown person before he can do so.
6 6 Episode 6 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook December 30, 2022 (2022-12-30)
Yeo-jeong opens his own practice in Semyeong, having decided to follow Dong-eun. Myeong-oh goes missing after the attack. While driving, Dong-eun receives a warning from Hyeon-nam that she is being followed. She leads the men into an auto collision, and they exchange phone numbers. Unbeknownst to her, the two men secretly work for Young-Joon. Suspicious, she asks Hyeon-nam why she was following her but realizes Hyeon-nam was only doing her job and the two make up. Do-yeong receives a photograph of him with Dong-eun and he and the group each try to reach Myeong-oh. While getting her car fixed, the sound of barbecuing meat triggers Dong-eun’s PTSD and sends her into a panic attack. She heads to Yeo-jeong’s new place for comfort. Jae-joon discovers that Ye-sol is his daughter. Hye-jeong receives an envelope full of private images from her phone. Dong-eun tells Yeo-jeong of her plan for revenge. When he tries to discourage her, she shows him the extensive scarring on her body. Shocked and disturbed, Yeo-jeong offers to be her “executioner”.
7 7 Episode 7 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook December 30, 2022 (2022-12-30)
Do-yeong grows suspicious of Yeon-jin and her group. Yeo-jeong’s mother, Sang-im, the director of her own hospital, receives a letter from Kang Yeong-cheon, the now-imprisoned murderer of Yeo-jeong’s father, and realizes the killer has been taunting her son. The normally-bright Yeo-jeong fantasizes about killing Yeong-cheon, revealing his own dark side. Dong-eun plans to use the money from Sa-ra to send Hyeon-nam’s daughter to study in the US so she is safe. Jae-joon wants to take back Ye-sol but that will require a divorce between Yeon-jin and Do-yeong. Before Myeong-oh’s disappearance, it is revealed that Dong-eun had told him that on the day So-hee died, So-hee had Yeon-jin’s name tag in her hand. Jae-joon confronts Yeon-jin with Ye-sol’s paternity and they kiss. Do-yeong attends Ye-sol’s class, sees Jae-joon, and realizes that Ye-sol’s teacher is Dong-eun.
8 8 Episode 8 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook December 30, 2022 (2022-12-30)
Dong-eun threatens Hye-jeong into reporting Myeong-oh’s disappearance to the police. Do-yeong learns from Hye-jeong that Yeon-jin was a malicious bully to Dong-eun and others in the past. Yeo-jeong meets Do-yeong for the first time and plays Go with him, reporting back to Dong-eun. Yeon-jin finds and once again bribes Dong-eun’s mother in order to have leverage over Dong-eun. Sang-im visits Yeong-cheon in prison to tell him to stop the letters. Do-yeong asks Dong-eun for her side of the story. Yeon-jin breaks into Dong-eun’s apartment and sees her wall of photographs, then turns to find Do-yeong has stepped inside too. Yeo-jeong discovers that So-hee’s body is not in the mortuary.
Part 2
9 1 Episode 9 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook March 10, 2023 (2023-03-10)
On Myeong-oh’s last day, he tried and failed to blackmail Do-yeong, Dong-eun, Jae-joon, Sa-ra and Hye-jeong. Later, as the clique realizes this, they begin to suspect Yeon-jin of being involved in Myeong-oh’s disappearance, as well as how So-hee died. Do-yeong demands an explanation from Yeon-jin, but she sidesteps his questions and attempts to turn the tables on him. Yeo-jeong learns that So-hee’s body was moved to the freezer on his father’s orders, who hoped the case can be reopened. Dong-eun moves in with Yeo-jeong. With Myeong-oh’s disappearance now a criminal investigation, Jae-joon tells the officer in charge, Detective Choi, that Do-yeong was looking for Myeong-oh. Dong-eun gives Yeon-jin one last chance to surrender herself to the police, but Yeon-jin refuses. Do-yeong receives information from Myeong-oh about Yeon-jin’s infidelity. In the past, a younger Dong-eun anonymously sent Yeon-jin’s name tag found at the scene of So-hee’s death to the police, only for the officer at the time, Young-joon, to give it to Young-ae, who kept it, covering up Yeon-jin’s involvement. So-hee is revealed to be pregnant when she died. Dong-eun realizes a photo of Seok-jae, Hyeon-nam’s husband, is missing from her wall. With it, Yeon-jin tracks down Hyeon-nam.
10 2 Episode 10 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook March 10, 2023 (2023-03-10)
Yeon-jin threatens Hyeon-nam into working for her, although this was forewarned by Dong-eun upon realizing the photo of Seok-jae was missing. At the school, Dong-eun is given a hard time by Mr. Chu, another teacher. Tipped off by Yeon-jin, Dong-eun’s mother surprises Dong-eun at the school. Dong-eun uses Hye-jeong to lure Yeon-jin to Yeo-jeong’s clinic. Hyeon-nam takes her daughter to Dong-eun, who places her in the care of Jung-mi. Hyeon-nam tell Dong-eun she will work for Yeon-jin to avert suspicions. Jae-joon learns that CCTV footage from the boutique on the night of Myeong-oh’s disappearance has been erased. Detective Choi interviews Yeo-jeong, who reveals that he tried to call Myeong-oh after learning he was looking for So-hee’s body. Dong-eun wears a sleeveless dress to dinner and shocks Do-yeong with the scars on her body. While undergoing anesthesia before a cosmetic procedure, Yeon-jin is questioned by Yeo-jeong about Myeong-oh. In a flashback, it is revealed Myeong-oh recorded the conversation with Yeon-jin, but she destroyed his phone partway through. When Myeong-oh blackmails Yeon-jin about So-hee’s death and made sexual advances on Yeon-jin, she flew into a rage and beat Myeong-oh’s head twice with a bottle, then left him for dead.
11 3 Episode 11 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook March 10, 2023 (2023-03-10)
Yeon-jin enlists Young-joon to once again help her and take care of Myeong-oh’s body. Instead of disposing of it, Young-joon decided to store the body at an abandoned funeral home in order to have future leverage against Yeon-jin and Young-ae. A confused Yeon-jin flees Yeo-jeong’s clinic in a panic. Dong-eun tells Do-yeong she intends to make Yeon-jin lose everyone around her, but Do-yeong replies he has no plans to divorce Yeon-jin at this time. Yeon-jin tries to guilt Do-yeong with his relationship with Dong-eun, but he points to Yeon-jin’s affair with Jae-joon. Jae-joon attempts to recover CCTV footage from the boutique. Dong-eun hires some of Sung-hee’s gangster friends to watch over Hyeon-nam. Hyeon-nam was unable to bid farewell to her daughter at the airport due to Yeon-jin’s interference causing Seok-jae to return home early to beat her. After Young-ae is informed that So-hee’s body is frozen, she asks Young-joon to find a legal loophole to seize and get rid of it. Yeo-jeong buys the abandoned funeral home. After Seok-jae learns that Hyeon-nam is working for Yeon-jin, he blackmails Young-ae. Hye-jeong finds Myeong-oh’s partial recording.
12 4 Episode 12 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook March 10, 2023 (2023-03-10)
Dong-eun and Yeo-jeong locate Myeong-oh’s body at the abandoned funeral home. It is revealed that Yeo-jeong took DNA samples from Yeon-jin at the clinic. Hyeon-nam gives information about Yeo-jeong to Yeon-jin. Yeon-jin begins to see hallucinations of So-hee. Dong-eun sends information to Jae-joon indicating Mr. Chu has been taking upskirt photographs of students at the school. Jae-joon beats up Mr. Chu, but Ye-sol sees the act. Kyung-ran, the shop assistant at the boutique, is revealed to have the bottle Yeon-jin used to beat Myeong-oh. At the police station, Jae-joon and Do-yeong get into a fight over Ye-sol. Sang-im refuses to bow to pressure to move So-hee’s frozen body back to the morgue. At the school, Dong-eun is confronted by a group of mothers her mother had turned against her. Yeo-jeong comforts Dong-eun. Dong-eun plants drugs at the church run by Sa-ra’s father, and anonymously tips Sa-ra to their presence, causing her to relapse and hallucinate into performing sexual acts in front of churchgoers. When Yeon-jin arrives at the church, Dong-eun reveals a letter alleging bullying behavior by an anonymous weather presenter has been posted online.
13 5 Episode 13 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook March 10, 2023 (2023-03-10)
The video of Sa-ra and the letter cause a media sensation and intense speculation. Jae-joon finds out the hard drive was swapped, not erased. Hye-jeong shows Jae-joon Myeong’oh’s recording; he realizes the recording was made at his boutique, and seduces Hye-jeong. Dong-eun approaches Kyung-ran, imploring her to not get in the way of her proving Yeon-jin murdered Myeong-oh. Seok-jae continues to blackmail Young-ae. Young-ae enlists her shaman friend to help her get rid of Seok-jae. Yeon-jin learns that Hye-jeong helped Dong-eun to lure her to Yeo-jeong’s clinic. Hye-jeong tells Sa-ra that Yeon-jin used her media contacts to spread a story about Sa-ra’s tax evasion, thus taking attention off her own bullying complaint. Dong-eun finds the letters sent by Yeong-cheon to Yeo-jeong. Yeo-jeong applies for a job at the prison holding Yeong-cheon. Young-joon find out the funeral home was sold. Dong-eun resigns from the school. Young-joon blackmails Yeon-jin with Myeong-oh’s body, but Dong-eun had already arranged for Myeong-oh’s body to be dumped and discovered where So-hee died. Dong-eun confronts her mother, who while in an alcohol-induced rage starts a fire in the apartment, all while being recorded.
14 6 Episode 14 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook March 10, 2023 (2023-03-10)
Following the resurfacing of Myeong-oh’s body, Young-joon hastily makes plans to liquidate all assets and leave the country. Dong-eun commits her mother to a mental institution. Yeo-jeong learns from Dong-eun’s landlady that she saved her life once. Do-yeong learns from Dong-eun the address of So-hee’s mother and the location of So-hee’s body. Yeon-jin persuades Jae-joon to provide her with an alibi on the day of Myeong-oh’s disappearance. Jae-joon gives Do-yeong a copy of Myeong-oh’s recording, offering to not pass it to the police if Do-yeong divorces Yeon-jin and gives up custody of Ye-sol. Young-ae uses the shaman to lure Seok-jae, then crashes into him with Young-joon in the car, thereby threatening Young-joon into helping her. Dong-eun blackmails Young-ae. Realizing she left traces in the funeral home, Yeon-jin revisits it only to be surprised by Yeo-jeong. Dong-eun is interviewed again by Detective Choi; she gives him a tip about a lighter found near So-hee’s body. Do-yeong decides to send Ye-sol to Europe. Yeon-jin learns that the Seok-jae was Hyeon-nam’s husband. The shaman stages So-hee’s last moments in front of Yeon-jin, revealing that Yeon-jin set fire to So-hee’s clothes, causing a struggle which ended with Yeon-jin pushing So-hee off the roof.
15 7 Episode 15 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook March 10, 2023 (2023-03-10)
The shaman seemingly sees So-hee’s ghost, collapses then dies. Yeon-jin tries to threaten Hyeon-nam into settling regarding Seok-jae’s death, but Hyeon-nam slaps and counter-threaten Yeon-jin. Do-yeong gives Yeon-jin an ultimatum to make amends to So-hee’s mother. When Yeon-jin refuses, Do-yeong initiates divorce proceedings. After Sa-ra leaks old video footage of Yeon-jin bullying So-hee, Yeon-jin resigns from her job. Ye-sol rejects Yeon-jin, devastating her. Yeon-jin issues a public apology, but maintains that So-hee killed herself. The clique blame each other for their troubles, culminating with Sa-ra stabbing Hye-jeong in the neck. Yeo-jeong discovers that Jae-joon raped So-hee. Dong-eun learns that Do-yeong paid So-hee’s hospital fees. In a flashback, it is revealed Dong-eun and Kyung-ran were close friends before Dong-eun was bullied. Jae-joon breaks up with Hye-jeong, now mute, and reveals he deleted Myeong-oh’s recording. Sa-ra is charged with attempted murder. It is revealed Yeo-jeong planted Yeon-jin’s DNA on Myeong-oh’s body, which later matched DNA found on the lighter. Yeo-jeong’s job application is rejected. Young-ae gives the nametag to Dong-eun in an effort to save herself, causing Yeon-jin to realize her mother betrayed her. When So-hee’s mother collapses and is admitted to hospital, Dong-eun finds out her legal guardian is Yeo-jeong.
16 8 Episode 16 Ahn Gil-ho Kim Eun-sook March 10, 2023 (2023-03-10)
Yeo-jeong admits he knew about Dong-eun’s situation from the start. Dong-eun admits she approached him to ensure So-hee’s body stay frozen. Yeon-jin and Young-ae are both arrested on suspicion of murder. Detective Choi realizes Dong-eun orchestrated the chain of events, but decides to close the investigation. Young-joon is beaten to death by his former subordinates over money. Jae-joon goes blind from eye medication tampered by Hye-jeong with Dong-eun’s help and drowns after being pushed into a pool of wet concrete by someone implied to be Do-yeong. Do-yeong and Ye-sol relocate to the UK. So-hee is laid to rest. It is revealed that Myeong-oh was found alive by Kyung-ran, but she panicked after experiencing flashbacks of Myeong-oh’s sexual assault and delivered the killing blow with the same bottle. Kyung-ran contacted Dong-eun, who framed Yeon-jin. Dong-eun and Yeo-jeong enjoy a night out, but she leaves without warning. Hyeon-nam gives farewell gifts from Dong-eun to Sung-hee and Jung-mi. Dong-eun burns her materials and plans to end her life by jumping off the same place where So-hee died, but is interrupted by Sang-im. Six months later, Dong-eun and Yeo-jeong carry out a plan to infiltrate the prison where Yeong-cheon is held. Dong-eun becomes a teacher again and starts tutoring a student whose father is a policy maker for Korean prisons. Yeo-jeong becomes a doctor at Jisan prison, which holds the most notorious criminals. Yeong-cheon is cornered by his inmates and is severely beaten before being transferred to Jisan. Dong-eun leads classes for inmates who are about to be released and Yeo-jeong ensures that they are in good health. Yeong-cheon is escorted by guards and sees Yeo-jeong standing by the corridor. He gets flashbacks of his conversations with Yeo-jeong, and becomes fearful. Dong-eun and Yeo-jeong walk together towards the prison, and the doors close behind them.

Production[edit]

Development[edit]

Preparation for the series began in January 2021. Entirely pre-produced by Hwa&Dam Pictures and its parent company Studio Dragon, it is a Netflix original series.[38] It is said that the series will be produced in two seasons, 8 episodes per season for a total of 16 episodes.[39]

On December 20, 2022, the director announced at the drama’s press conference that Part 2 will be released in March 2023.[40][41]

Casting[edit]

In July 2022, The Glory confirmed production with ensemble casting of Song Hye-kyo, Lee Do-hyun, Lim Ji-yeon, Yeom Hye-ran, Park Sung-hoon, and Jung Sung-il.[9]

Reception[edit]

Audience response[edit]

Two days after the release of The Glory Part 1 on December 30, 2022, it ranked ninth globally on Netflix’s TV shows category. On its third day, it reached fifth place on the most watched shows on Netflix worldwide. Two days after the release of The Glory Part 2 on March 10, 2023, it ranked second worldwide and became top one worldwide on its third day[42] The series debuted at number three on the Netflix’s Weekly Global Top 10 in non-English TV show category for the week December 26 – January 1, with 25.41 million hours viewed[43] and subsequently ranked number one of the same list in the following week, January 2–8, accumulating 82.48 million viewing hours.[44][45]

The series now ranked among the top 10 all-time Non-English TV series at #5 with 436.90 million hours watched in the first 28 days of release.[46]

Critical response[edit]

On review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, The Glory has an approval rating of 83%, based on 6 reviews.[47]

Writing for Forbes, Joan MacDonald praised Song Hye-kyo for her “nuanced portrayal of Dong-eun” as well as Jung Ji-so who played teen Dong-eun, and wrote “The Glory features a fair share of unexpected plot twists, veering the story from almost horror to melodrama to murder mystery.”[48] Lakshana N. Palat, in his review for The Indian Express, praised the series’ cinematography, music, and Song Hye-kyo’s performance, stating, “It is one of her finest performances, if not her best.”[49] Chris Vognar of San Francisco Chronicle called the series “visually arresting”, “carefully constructed” and “delights in every step”.[50]

Pierce Conran of South China Morning Post graded the series with 4 out of 5, appreciating its storyline.[51] The Hindu‘s S. Poorvaja wrote, “Part 2 of The Glory, goes above and beyond, with its razor-sharp writing, compelling narrative, and impressive performances. And this is no easy feat, given that the story here has its focus trained on a rather complicated plan of revenge coming to fruition.”[52]

Spotlighting school bullying[edit]

The series has been criticized for its graphic portrayal of violence, but it has also been praised for shedding a light on the ongoing abuses among students in South Korean schools.[53] The violent scenes reminded the country’s viewers of an 2006 incident where a middle schooler was beaten and burned by her classmates over the course of 20 days, not allowing her wounds to heal. She ended up being hospitalized for six weeks. One of the perpetrators was arrested afterward, while the school and its staff faced “administrative measures”.[7][53] Kim Eun-sook, the writer of the series, was initially inspired by her teenage daughter asking her which scenario she would find more distraught, that her daughter abuses someone else or that her daughter ends up as a victim of abuse.[7] Since the show was aired, former employees in the South Korean school system have said that its depiction is realistic.[54]

In March 2023, an anonymous online post accused the director of the series Ahn Gil-ho of physically assaulting a classmate when he studied in the Philippines in 1996. Ahn initially denied the allegation but ultimately admitted to it in a statement through his law firm. It said that Ahn and his friends confronted another group of students after hearing that the latter had made fun of Ahn’s girlfriend at the time. Ahn wanted to seek forgiveness from those he had hurt and offered to make apologies in person.[55][56]

Accolades[edit]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Name of the award ceremony, year presented, category, nominee(s) of the award, and the result of the nomination
Award ceremony Year Category Nominee / Work Result Ref.
Asia Contents Awards & Global OTT Awards 2023 Best Actress Song Hye-kyo Nominated [57]
Best Supporting Actress Lim Ji-yeon Won
Best Writer Kim Eun-sook Nominated
Best Creative The Glory Nominated
Asian Academy Creative Awards 2023 Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Grand Final Winners) Lim Ji-yeon Won [58]
Best Drama Series (Grand Final Winners) The Glory Won
Best Actress in A Leading Role (National Winners – Korea) Song Hye-kyo Won [59][60]
Best Actress in a Supporting Role (National Winners – Korea) Lim Ji-yeon Won
Best Drama Series (National Winners – Korea) The Glory Won
Best Screenplay (National Winners – Korea) Kim Eun-sook Won
Baeksang Arts Awards 2023 Grand Prize – Television The Glory Nominated [61]
Kim Eun-sook Nominated
Best Drama The Glory Won
Best Actress Song Hye-kyo Won
Best Supporting Actor Park Sung-hoon Nominated
Best Supporting Actress Yeom Hye-ran Nominated
Lim Ji-yeon Won
Best New Actor Kim Gun-woo Nominated
Best New Actress Kim Hieora Nominated
Best Screenplay Kim Eun-sook Nominated
Technical Award Jang Jong-kyung (Cinematography) Nominated
Blue Dragon Series Awards 2023 Best Drama The Glory Nominated [62]
Blue Dragon’s Choice (Grand Prize) Nominated
Song Hye-kyo Won
Best Actress Nominated
Best Supporting Actor Park Sung-hoon Nominated
Best Supporting Actress Lim Ji-yeon Won
Best New Actress Cha Joo-young Nominated
Brand Customer Loyalty Awards 2023 Best Actress – OTT Song Hye-kyo Won [63]
Lim Ji-yeon Nominated
Best Actor – OTT Lee Do-hyun Nominated
Brand of the Year Awards 2023 Best Actress – OTT Song Hye-kyo Nominated [64]
Lim Ji-yeon Won
Best Actor – OTT Lee Do-hyun Won
Actress of The Year – Scene Stealer Park Ji-a Nominated
Consumer Day KCA Culture Entertainment Awards 2023 Drama Category – Best Picture The Glory Won [65]
Best Director Ahn Gil-ho Won
Best Screenplay Kim Eun-sook Won
Critics’ Choice Awards 2024 Best Foreign Language Series The Glory Nominated [66]
Grand Bell Awards 2023 Best Series Nominated [67]
Best Director Series Ahn Gil-ho Nominated
Best Actress Series Song Hye-kyo Nominated
Global Film & Television Huading Awards 2023 Best Actor in Global Drama Series Lee Do-hyun Nominated [68]
Most Popular Actress in Global Drama Series Song Hye-kyo Nominated
Golden Cinema Film Festival 2023 Special OTT Performance Award Cha Joo-young Won [69]
Kinolights Awards 2023[A] Best Actress Song Hye-kyo 2nd Place [70]
Lim Ji-yeon 1st Place
Best Drama The Glory 1st Place
Seoul International Drama Awards 2023 Best Picture Won[B] [71]
Korea Drama Awards 2023 Best Drama Won [72]
Daesang Song Hye-kyo Nominated
Top Excellent Award, Actress Lim Ji-yeon Nominated
Excellent Award, Actor Park Sung-hoon Nominated
Best New Actor Kim Gun-woo Nominated
Best Director Ahn Gil-ho Won

Listicle[edit]

Publisher Year Listicle Placement Ref.
Time 2023 The 10 Best Korean Dramas of 2023 on Netflix Included [73]

Notes[edit]

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  1. ^ First half of 2023
  2. ^ Tied with Extraordinary Attorney Woo

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