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'Descendants Of The Sun' Slaughtered Its Competition With 23.4 Percent Ratings

BY Adrienne Stanley | Mar 02, 2016 06:29 PM EST

"Descendants of the Sun" delivered record-breaking ratings with its third episode, surpassing the viewership of 2015 juggernaut, "Yong Pal." 

According to data released by Nielsen Korea, the KBS drama received 23.4 percent in nationwide viewership. This was figure reflects a significant audience increase of 7.9 percent.

The military drama has the potential to yield the strongest ratings of 2016, as audiences tune in for the compelling chemistry of stars Song Joong Ki and Song Hye Kyo. 

Episode three of "Descendants of the Sun" opened with the reunion of Yoo Shi Jin (Song Joong Ki) and Kang Mo Yeon in Urek, a fictitious nation whose ethnic composition and political climate resembles the war-torn nation of Sarajevo.

Shi Jin struggles with his attraction to Mo Yeon, who attempts to maintain detached professionalism. 

Details surrounding the secondary love line of Yoon Myung Joo (Kim Ji Won) and Seo Dae Young (Jin Goo) were revealed through Shi Jin, who reveals the circumstances under which they became a couple. 

Myung Joo pursued Dae Young, despite her father's support of Shi Jin. Their relationship will likely provide comedic relief from the subplots of politically corrupt arms dealers and starving children. 

The series presents several conundrums for Shi Jin and the medical team led by Mo Yeon. An arms smuggling plot is seamlessly interspersed with scenes where a deposed dictator awaits surgery by the Korean physicians while his security detail attempts to prevent the procedure. 

"Descendants of the Sun" continues to surpass its contemporaries in the battle for rating supremacy, demonstrating the potential for Korean dramas that air post-production.

The SBS drama, "Please Comeback, Mister," recorded 5.2 percent in nationwide viewership, as Rain received more screentime.

Meanwhile, MBC's romantic comedy, "One More Happy Ending," received a decreased audience of 3.8 percent. 

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