[Review] King’s Maker – A story of “The Good King” by Haga and Kang Ji Young

Yesterday night I started to think, what should I share this week? I hadn’t read as much as I wanted to but I did read a couple titles I thought were humorous enough, however, as I was trying to think of something, this webcomic showed up on the front page. It had been a while since I had last read it but I recall there being a season two in the works. Perhaps it had been long enough where it was either complete or it had so many chapters I wouldn’t be able to binge it all in one night

Suffice to say I was up until about 3am devouring the first season, since it had been so long I didn’t want to miss future details, and what was available of the second season! Also, if it wasn’t obvious already, I originally picked up this series because of the GORGEOUS art!!

On the day that Lady Christine died, she told her son to run and hide if he wanted to keep his freedom and so Wolfgang ran. For years he lived on the streets hiding from, his father, the King; however, five years after the incident that claimed Lady Christine’s life, a mandate went around the kingdom. Since it had already been so long and no news of Wolfgang had been heard, the royal search would be suspended and the 4th prince would be presumed dead. In lieu of this tragedy, the name Wolfgang would be prohibited from use and anyone still using the name should be reported. Sadly, this was all a ruse and every child that was reported as Wolfgang was murdered. Seeing this, Wolfgang decided it was time to stop hiding. Publicly announcing himself to the guards, he was taken to the palace to live in luxury

In his mind’s eye, however, his mother’s last words persisted: “You must remember. Do not ever covet the king’s possessions. Even if you see something, act like you do not. Even if you hear something, act like you do not. And even if you want something, act like you do not.”

Then he glimpses Shin Soohyuk, one of the King’s favorite “children”, and he learns that perhaps there is another way to get back at the King for all the atrocities he’s done, not just to his own family but to countless of his subjects

This webcomic is actually much darker than I expected, so I would tread carefully if this ends up being something you’d like to check out.

Potential triggers: There is much violence portrayed, such as the fire that took Lady Christine, the bodies of the Wolfgang boys that were denounced, and (later) the torture and death of countless children and executions of adults. There is also a suffocating amount of abuse of minors. For example, the King has a group of children that live in the palace (Shin being his favorite) and their function is to “entertain” (violence) the King and accept his “affections”. These affections usually being of a sexual kind and while the children are “safe” from his grasp until they are fifteen, eventual rape is implied. Because of this, nobles often send their children away, hoping to keep them safe

It’s a very disturbing environment, which is why it’s not surprising that many in the kingdom are biding their time for rebellion

Now that all the dreary stuff is out of the way, I can openly cry and scream about how amazing this webcomic is. Like, the attention to detail is ASTOUNDING. Obviously we could see some of the beautiful art on the cover but I’ve noticed that sometimes that’s all there is to it, after all, the cover has to lure us in, right? But from the first pages until season two and beyond, everything has been gorgeously rendered! I mean, who needs this chandelier to look so beautiful? Nobody. I don’t need it to be but doesn’t just make you appreciate the art more? And it works for the plot by placing emphasis on where the King’s priorities lay. Actually, one of my favorite moments happens at a ball where the outfits and scenery are done so beautifully I swooned! Haga and Kang Ji Young really know how to feed my eyes and my soul and my everything~

Even something as simple as the characters’ eyes never fail to impress me. Especially Wolfgang, his eyes are PIERCING. I wish he’d place his steady gaze on me how he does on Shin, GOD, the intensity!!

Speaking of Wolfgang, I really enjoy seeing him, and no, it’s not just because I think he’s beautiful and grows up into a FINE specimen of a man…but because he’s just all over the place, even where he’s not expected to excel. He didn’t grow up on the streets so he did learn how to read and write, and probably received some sort of upper class education, but after living on the streets for five years, he also picked up some unique skills and mannerisms that allow for him to bond with your non-upper class palace members like the soldiers and servants. But he’s also not perfect. We see that his temper often gets the best of him, especially at the beginning, and his language leaves much to be desired (but whatever, I enjoy the brusqueness, kekeke)

He’s very perceptive and stubborn about the things he wants. When he can’t find a solution that works, he has learned to work around the rules to make new solutions

All of this is probably why Shin begins to warm up to him and eventually decides to help him become king (not a spoiler, I mean, the series is called “King’s Maker” soooo)

Shin on the other hand, is a bit more complex and while we do get to know him in the first season of King’s Maker, I do think that more of his thoughts and personality are detailed in Triple Crown (season two). That said, I also got pretty attached to him. I felt for his situation, being the King’s favorite, but I also admire how he didn’t just sit by and do nothing about his situation. How would things have turned out if Wolfgang hadn’t appeared? I’m not sure. It’s implied he’d been plotting something since before but since we only get that timeline with Wolfgang, we can see how dedicated he was to everything. I often found myself thinking, how can someone so young be prepared to sacrifice themselves to this degree? (And then I remember what awaits him and think, oh)

Aside from this, he also sort of becomes Wolfgang’s private tutor, pretty much turning him from a street urchin and into king material. Because of this and Wolfgang’s more rebellious personality, we often see them clashing and Shin lecturing Wolfgang. But the beauty of it all is that they’re usually on the same page and I love it!

There are also so many other characters in the series that I absolutely ADORE and Sys is probably in third place! Maybe it’s because he’s been around since the beginning or because I really LOVE his bodyguards (and their dress code) and his charm and just how adorable he is, but I feel so refreshed whenever he’s nearby. Often I think he’s the comedic effect character, which is sad when you think about how he fills the role of the more effeminate and crossdressing male of the story. That said, I also just LOVE how he doesn’t care what others think. He has his specialty in some of the more deadly medicinal arts and while he may look all fluffy and cute, he can break bones as easily as a twig. Don’t let that smile fool you!

I am hoping he gets more romance development later. I think Haga and Kang Ji Young have been doing EXCELLENT in the gay romance department and I wouldn’t want him to be the weak link. Plus, not only would it be HOT, but I think he deserves a hunk to smother with love~

If you’ve made it this far, I hope I’ve conveyed how much I adore this series and hope you check it out! It’s actually not all that long but it is longer than most BL series. The first season has 38 chapters (with the Prologue) and the second season is pushing 60 chapters (and they’re all gloriously long!). The second season is much lighter in content than the first since we are now seeing Wolfgang try and hold together the kingdom (instead of him becoming King material in a twisted kingdom). The violence that we see is arguably the same, however, it hardly involves children anymore (especially not in the context of the first season). But there are new troubles that arise, particularly focused on the relationship between Shin and Wolfgang. We also get to travel a bit around the world and learn that the Goldenleonard family really was putrid

The amount of crying and feels and hurt I’ve felt since I started this season is TOO MUCH! Especially around the later chapters. MMGGGHH, I don’t know if I can handle it all

That said, there is a mature version being released so if you want to see them getting hot and bothered, there are like three or four nsfw episodes. Actually, one of them is more hurt / comfort and it BROKE ME

Where to Purchase~

So I’m not exactly sure why but the two seasons are split on platforms. I know you can purchase the first season via Lezhin, which will cost you about $25

Meanwhile, you can find the second season, Triple Crown, both the mature and 16+ version, on TappyToon. I believe that by bulk buying all the chapters it costs about $20. I’m not sure why but the 16+ version actually has more chapters out. I believe it’s already at chapter 60, meanwhile, the mature version only has 53 episodes (and this is including the few extra nsfw chapters so in terms of plot content it’s probably at 49)

UPDATE: You can now get both seasons on TappyToon!! The first two chapters (ep 0 and 1) are free to view on TappyToon and on 3/23/21 we’ll be able to start purchasing up to episode 10!

I’ve also heard that you can find both seasons in one place (KakaoPage), but I’m not familiar with this service and it’s in Korean so I kept to Lezhin and TappyToon

And lastly!! I do know the authors actually printed physical books for this series!! They usually announce the news on their Twitter and they do these special editions, which, sadly for me, amazing for them!, sells out ASAP. Actually, now that I’m a bit more versed on how to purchase from South Korean bookstores (thank you reddit!), I might be able to catch the potential next special edition?! I’m guessing that this printed season is part one of season two (so the first 60 episodes) so maybe whenever the second part of season two ends, I might have a chance (lol)

Wow, this post got long!! But I got super excited after rereading it and really wanted to share~ Have you read this webcomic? Did you like it? Are you still following it? Don’t you think everyone in the series is swoon-worthy?! And if you haven’t yet, do you plan on it?

6 thoughts on “[Review] King’s Maker – A story of “The Good King” by Haga and Kang Ji Young”

  1. OMG!! I just started reading this a few months ago and devoured the first season too!
    I also picked it up because of the art, though wasn’t expecting much since most of the BL web comics I had checked out around that time turned out to be incredibly shallow and predictable (which I’ve come to expect of most BL, but was getting tired of it). But this one was a seriously pleasant and very welcomed surprise, from the godly art, the solid storyline, the personality diverse characters, etc., I LOVED it!
    I haven’t read more than the 1st season (was waiting till the 2nd season was completed so I could binge it), but am glad I saw your review before going back to it since I had no idea there was a mature version on TappyToon, I’ll be checking it out on there instead 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. yessss!!! and yes, i didn’t realize until i opened on my desktop and was like WHAT where be the mature!! x”D i’ve been pleasantly surprised by the actual plot in some korean webcomics like yes pls gimme more, a lot of it is dark too but thats ok lol

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s