Netflix’s multi-billion dollar project for gaining a solid foothold in the anime market as a mainstream distributor in the west that goes toe to toe with the likes of Crunchyroll has already been well-documented. But it is when one takes a look at the general trending categories on today’s Netflix library that the bigger picture comes to perspective: i.e. that anime is only one aspect of a larger shift, that Netflix has been catering to the Asian market as a natural corollary to their attempts of gaining a larger international presence outside of the regular U.S. audience.
While licensing original anime productions and distribution is certainly a cunning strategy that Netflix has executed spectacularly, a potentially even larger and becoming market is the South-east Asian independent TV drama scene – which can collectively outdo even the bigger consolidated U.S. networks like Comcast when it comes to being prolific in production output. K-drama is, in particular, a relatively low-hanging fruit in this regard, as not only is licensing the South Korean silver screen beneficial in bringing Netflix to a seat of prominence among the eastern audience, but it also doubles as a well-timed endeavour that piggybacks on the recent insurgence of almost global popularity for K-pop and K-drama.
Netflix had been building its expansive K-drama library even before the other stakeholders like Amazon Prime joined the game, and by 2017 K-drama was already a high-revenue category for them, with brilliant titles like Descendants of The Sun, Oh My Ghostess, and Reply 1977. Romance is A Bonus Book is another droplet to this sea of K-dramas that has accumulated on the Netflix showreel – albeit a particularly bright and promising one. The show first premiered on January 26, 2019.
Romance is A Bonus Book Cast: Who’s in it?
If you are even slightly familiar with the K-drama scene or are an avid consumer of K-drama, you will immediately recognize the lead actor and actress in this show as household names. Lee Jong-Suk, the prolific actor of School 2013 fame (also Pinochhio, While You Were Sleeping, and The Hymn of Death among his other notable works) plays Eun-ho, the protagonist, while Ruler of Your Own World-starrer Lee Na-Young plays the heroine opposite him. As a disclaimer, the plot for a prospective second season remains to be known, but we can surmise that at least Jong-Suk and Na-Young will be returning as the lead couple if another season does surface.
Romance is A Bonus Book Plot: What is it about?
The show is a textbook Korean TV romcom, and if you have watched the bazillion other shows of this genre that Netflix has shipped from the K-drama scene, you likely already know what to expect. Romance is a Bonus Book enshrines the best characteristics found in the Korean romcoms – it is lighthearted, good for a casual gig, but at the same time heart-warming without getting soapy or sappy. It focuses on the romantic intrigue between the lead couple, and their publishing business. The plot synopsis on Netflix’s website describes the show in its entirety as, “A gifted writer who’s the youngest editor-in-chief ever at his publishing company gets enmeshed in the life of a former copywriter desperate for a job.”
Romance is A Bonus Book Season 2 Release Date: When will it premiere?
The show has not been officially renewed yet, so the air dates for season 2 remains TBA. Season 1 of Romance is A Bonus Book ran from January 26 to March 17, 2019. Produced by Story & Pictures Media, the South Korean TV series production company, the first season consists of 16 episodes. The lack of news on its tentative next season could translate to a long wait but since the show has now received international recognition thanks to Netflix, chances of a renewal are higher now than ever. So we may be in for a new season soon enough. A release date for season 2 in early 2020 seems highly likely at this point.
Romance is A Bonus Book Trailer:
There have not been any updates on a new season on the original producers’, tVN’s, or Netflix’s account till date but while you wait for official announcements regarding the future of the show and its follow-up season, you can either watch reruns of the original season on tVN, if it does go on rerun schedules, or stream it online on Netflix (if you don’t have Netflix, you could always sign up now – the first month is free of charge!). If you want a head start into the debut season, or want to get a taste of what the show is like beforehand, you can watch the official trailer for it here.
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