The King and I is a South Korean historical drama series currently airing on SBS. It began airing on August 27, 2007, and has been moderately successful, having its ratings peak at 20 Percent. Due to competition from MBC drama Yi San, its 50-episode order has been extended to 66 episodes.
The King and I revolves around the life of Kim Cheoseon, a eunuch who lived during the Joseon Dynasty. A servant of various Korean emperors, he becomes the servant of Emperor Sunjong in order to protect childhood friend Sohwa, who has since become the Emperor's second concubine. Although Cheoseon is in love with Sohwa, he is unable to do anything about it due to her status as a "King's Woman".
Although Sohwa becomes the Emperor's Queen, due to political strife, she is cast out of the palace in disgrace. Kim Cheoseon attempts to help his childhood friend, but he is eventually forced to poison Sohwa to death. After her death, he looks after her son, Yeonsangun.
In the Joseon Dynasty period, the kingdom was enveloped in a political maelstrom. Cheo-seon was born as a posthumous child and separated from his mother immediately. He was raised by Weol-hwa and the old Swe-gwi, who ran the eunuch school. When he meets So-hwa, the daughter of a powerful noble, he falls in love with her immediately. He voluntarily becomes a eunuch to be close to So-hwa and is assigned to work for Cho Chi-gyeom, a senior eunuch. Entering the royal palace, he sees King, Sung-Jong and So-hwa spend their first night together. He becomes So-hwa’s loyal protector. As the political battles rage on among the courtesans and wives in the palace, So-hwa is chosen by the king to be his queen and Cheo-seon vows to be her loyal servant. But So-hwa is eventually dethroned as the queen and leaves the palace in disgrace. Cheo-seon helplessly watches these events unfold and he secretly helps So-hwa. But in a cruel twist of fate, he is the one chosen to execute So-hwa’s death sentence by serving her a bowlful of poison. After So-hwa dies, he looks after her son King, Yeonsangun as if he were his own son....