11 April 2016
Korean powerhouse drama Descendants of the Sun has done it again.
Already Asia's most talked about drama this year, Descendants of the Sun is now also South Korea's most watched Hallyu (Korean wave) drama in recent years.
In China, where the show is broadcast on the same day as South Korea, the number of Weibo searches for the drama have reached 10.3 billion, Yonhap reported.
Descendants of the Sun has become so popular in the nation that last Thursday's episode garnered 2.3 billion views on online video platform iQiYi by Saturday. It also registered 5.6 billion on the iQiYi index, which measures how many times videos are played and how long they are played for. This rating is 300 million points above the highest rating for My Love from the Star, a 2013 Korean drama which was also a phenomenal hit at the time.
The online video platform is the only broadcaster of the KBS drama in China, Korea Herald reported.
Needless to say, the hit drama has catapulted its lead actors to superstardom, in particular lead actor Song Joong Ki, who plays a captain in the South Korean special forces.
Resourceful fans have discovered where Song's parents live, and tourists have since been visiting the family's home in the city of Daejon, hoping to catch a glimpse of the 30-year-old star.
As the 16-episode drama draws near to its final episode, fans have begun to ensure that their favourite characters will continue to live on, by snapping up official Descendants of the Sun cookies, writing fan fiction and drawing fan art.
Even Thailand's Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha is captivated by the show. He recently urged Thais to watch the drama because it has "a sense of patriotism, sacrifice, obeying orders and being a dutiful citizen".
The last two episodes of Descendants of the Sun will be broadcast April 13 and 14. A special three-part series will also be shown in the days after that.
Singapore viewers can catch the show on Korean programmes streaming service Viu's mobile app.
See images related to Descendants of the Sun in the gallery below.