An "abnormal phenomenon" is occurring in Korean dramas. Dramas broadcast on cable channels, which are not public channels or comprehensive programming channels, are ranked first in ratings, beating out prominent competitors.

It is '
Extraordinary Attorney Woo' which is being aired on ENA (former SKY TV).

According to Nielsen Korea, a ratings agency, on the 12th, "
Extraordinary Attorney Woo" topped the drama ratings in the same time period in three episodes. The third episode, which aired on the 6th, recorded 4.0% of paid households nationwide.

Starting with 0.9% in the first episode, ENA achieved its own highest ratings with 1.8% in the second episode. In the fourth episode, which aired the next day, it rose 1.2 percentage points to 5.2 percent, maintaining the throne. It also topped the global OTT platform Netflix's Korean chart. It was ranked in the top 10 charts in Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam. In other words, it caused a "storm."

As you can guess from the title, the drama is a lawyer's story and a court genre. However, it does not follow the genre style that is popular these days. Like the SBS Friday-Saturday drama "Why Oh Soo-jae?" it is not about representatives of large law firms and political and economic power struggling behind the black screen. It is not a dark and heavy content like JTBC's Wednesday-Thursday drama "Insider."

It is a genre that deals with courts, but it is bright and light, but serious and warm. It is the survival of a law firm by a new lawyer, "Woo Young-woo" (Park Eun-bin), who has a brain with genius memorization and an autism spectrum at the same time. The production team did not make a drama out of a simple courtroom. It does not emphasize the main character's disability and force viewers to feel pity for the weak.

It shows the characteristics of the main character suffering from autism spectrum disorder thoughtfully, and talks about the prejudice and absurdity of the world through the main character looking at the world with a slightly different perspective.

Director Yoo In-sik, who showed his achievements in "Dr. Romantic," "Vagabond" and "Giant," took the megaphone and wrote by writer Moon Ji-won, who led the audience and critics with "Witness," which swept leading film festivals such as the Baeksang Arts Awards and Blue Dragon Awards.

The source of Woo Young-woo's syndrome is authenticity. Episodes accumulated based on simple and meticulous coverage in each episode give viewers something to think about. In particular, the production team worked hard to show Woo Young-woo's "autobiography spectrum" and convincingly show how people around him should accept it.

Producer Lee Young-hwa, who is in charge of production, said in a written interview with the World Daily, "The drama began when asked, 'Can a person with an autism spectrum become a lawyer?'" and added, "The first goal was to persuade and empathize with viewers because the main character has this character."

"In fact, there is a lawyer with an autism spectrum in the United States, but it was a different level of problem to have a real person and to create a character in the drama," he said. "That's why we had to investigate the autism spectrum first, and we got expert advice."

In particular, PD Lee stressed that he thought a lot to avoid the character "Woo Young-woo" appearing to functionally move in the play simply with the characteristics for the drama's development.

The main character of "Woo Young-woo Syndrome" is Park Eun-bin, the main character. Although his eyes are unnatural, difficult to communicate, and sensitive to noise, Woo Young-woo's appearance is not excessive.

Woo Young-woo, who is not honest but rather eccentric, seems to be a beginner in society in his 20s, who is nervous and full of mistakes. At an earlier production presentation, Park Eun-bin said, "I didn't want to imitate (other autism spectrum) characters embodied in the media," adding, "I was careful to implicitly remember and approach real people or existing characters and give them false perception."

"I studied while looking at the criteria for diagnosing autism spectrum. The professor who advises me checked the play, and I found the right line for everyone to act freely and put their sincerity into the character," he said, stressing that he spent a lot of time studying the character.
Regarding the favorable reviews of Park Eun-bin's acting, the production team explained the casting process, saying, "We tried hard to find an actor who can express the autism spectrum."

He even waited for Park Eun-bin for about a year. Producer Lee said, "I didn't choose and plan actor Park Eun-bin first, but when I thought about casting the main character Woo Young-woo after developing the script, I thought only actor Park Eun-bin could do the role," adding, "I delivered the script to actor Park Eun-bin in December 2020 and waited for the filming to end."

Woo Young-woo, a strange lawyer, is in harmony with all three beats, including excellent directing, writing staff, thorough preparation and waiting of the production company, and an actor who fits the role. As a result, Korean society, where prejudice against the disabled is firmly established, and now that protection against the weak is needed, viewers' generous support and applause for the drama continues.

"The title of the drama refers to the strange person as 'Woo Young-woo', but I think it could actually be 'we'. I hope many people in the world will watch this drama and feel that our lives are strange and eccentric, but 'worthwhile and beautiful.'"

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