So news from the grapevine has it that MBC has said that the TeukSora x HaeSeo* group date will be aired on both 10 and 17 March. Like most TeukSora fans, I was happy that WGM resumed regular broadcast this last weekend (and what a good episode it was!). That was until I read that the PDs and crew working on MBC’s stable of airing dramas would be joining in the strike as well. I had been under the impression that the situation was getting better since WGM resumed broadcast but this, apparently, was not the case since things have just gotten worse.
For me, it is good that I get to see TeukSora after such a long while and I really do appreciate that short but really sweet episode that aired on Saturday afternoon. On the other hand, I feel quite bad that someone had to have given in to the arm-twisting by MBC for WGM to air. This feeling, in particular, arose when I read about how MBC had been making use of the success of its dramas to put down the strikes. It was this that made me realise just how important it was to MBC to have a popular variety like WGM resume regular broadcast because it firstly supports the facade that the labour strike was not as big an issue as it seemed. The resumption of WGM’s broadcast also enforces a feeling of false security for both investors and viewers alike, that things will be back to normal soon and that will help buoy sales and advertising revenue for MBC, both which I am sure have been affected negatively by the strike.
I do not know much about the problems within MBC that are causing the strike, but I think I can safely say that they have to be pretty serious to the members of the staff if these strikes are taking place on an annual basis. And to have the drama PDs join in as well now. That says A LOT especially if it is true that MBC has been making use of the performance of the dramas to hit back at the staff that have been on strike since January.
The upside to this is that the crew behind ‘The Moon That Embraces The Sun’ is part of the team that is joining the strike and MoonSun is THE best performing drama that MBC has had in a while. This might mean that a real end is in sight for the labour strike since MBC would be feeling more pressured to let MoonSun continue its winning run right till the end. As we saw with WGM, a strike does impact ratings so it would only benefit MBC to let MoonSun finish its run unaffected. On the other hand, if MBC stubbornly refuses to budge, I am afraid that we might be looking at no more TeukSora again very soon.
I honestly feel bad because going on strike is not an easy decision for any employee to make because you are directly attacking the hand that feeds you and your family. To give up on the strike and head back to work while your peers are still holding their ground is an even harder decision to make since it primarily makes you look like a traitor to everyone else. It is also an issue of putting down your pride to give up on something that you believe in, and in Asian societies like ours, both pride and how others view us as individuals, are REALLY big things. So it must have been really difficult for whoever it is to give up on the strike and head back to work because of all the repercussions tied to it.
I am not so noble to say that as a viewer, I am going to take a stance against bullying and the abuse of power by not watching WGM as it airs while the strike goes on. As a foreign viewer living outside MBC’s realm, what I choose to watch or not watch has no immediate and direct impact anyway. As cheesy as this sounds, I will, however, have it in mind to be more thankful for each episode that airs during the strike. Someone in MBC is making sacrifices to do the work while the others continue to fight for what they all feel is right. This person (or persons) will be doing A LOT more than what he/she is usually required to do since everyone else is on strike and I think for that alone, he/she is fully worthy of thanks.
That aside, I hope that somebody in MBC wakes up soon and does something substantial and positive to end the strikes once and for all because this sort of thing really does nobody any good.
* I had typed ‘EunHae’ before it occurred to me as to just how blasphemous that would be especially in light of what EunSeo did to ‘get’ DongHae. Hence ‘HaeSeo’ it shall be.