The Idle Mermaid

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The Idle Mermaid
Promotional poster for The Idle Mermaid
Also known asSurplus Princess
The Mermaid
Based onThe Little Mermaid
by Hans Christian Andersen
Written byPark Ran
Kim Ji-soo
Directed byBaek Seung-ryong
StarringJo Bo-ah
On Joo-wan
Song Jae-rim
Park Ji-soo
Country of originSouth Korea South Korea
Original language(s)Korean
No. of episodes10
Production location(s)Korea
Running time45-50 minutes on Thursdays at 23:00 (KST)
Original networktvN
Picture format1080i (HDTV)
Audio formatDolby Digital
First shown inSouth Korea
Original releaseAugust 7 (2014-08-07) –
October 9, 2014 (2014-10-09)
Preceded byUgly Miss Young-Ae Season 13
External links
Korean name
Revised RomanizationIng-yeo gongju
McCune–ReischauerIngyŏ Kongchu

The Idle Mermaid[1] (Hangul잉여공주; RRIng-yeo gongju; literally Surplus Princess[2]) is a 2014 South Korean romantic comedy television series starring Jo Bo-ah, On Joo-wan, Song Jae-rim, and Park Ji-soo.[3][4] A modern retelling of The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Andersen, it aired on tvN from August 7 to October 9, 2014 on Thursdays at 23:00.[5] Originally slated to run for 14 episodes, the total number of episodes was changed to 10.[6] The series inspired an unofficial Indonesian adaptation called Mermaid in Love.[7][8]

Series overview[edit]

Aileen is a mermaid princess who is in love with Kwon Shi-kyung, a human celebrity chef. While recording a TV show next to the Han River, Shi-kyung hits his head and falls into the river, and Aileen stops him from drowning by kissing him underwater. Shi-kyung is pulled out from the water by Yoon Jin-ah, an intern who works for and is also in love with Shi-kyung. In order to meet Shi-kyung again, Aileen steals a magic potion from the male witch Ahn Ma-nyeo, and is transformed into a human girl. It's only after her transformation that Aileen learns that she has 100 days to find true love, or else she will die and turn into bubbles. Ahn Ma-nyeo helps Aileen by setting her up with the fake identity of "Kim Ha-ni," and sends her to live in a house in Seoul with other young people, most of whom are unemployed and searching for jobs. Among Aileen's new housemates is Lee Hyun-myung, Yoon Jin-ah's ex-boyfriend who is trying to win her back. With her new friends to help her, Aileen vows to find a way to win Shi-kyung's love, but in the end she falls in love with Hyun-myung. Although she initially disappears once her 100 days are up, she returns a year later to see her friends again.



The eighteenth mermaid princess of a mermaid kingdom in the sea. She finds a smartphone that fell into the sea and uses it to surf the internet and learn about the human world. She becomes infatuated with chef Kwon Shi-kyung; after saving him from the Han River, Aileen decides to become human so that she can be with him.
A human and resident of surplus house, he is unable to find a job with his art degree. At the request of his girlfriend Jin-ah, he gives up his pursuit of art and tries to find a desk job.
A famous chef in the human world. Believed to be cold and arrogant, he suffers from prosopagnosia. His father is a diplomat.
Hyun-myung's ex-girlfriend. A former resident of surplus house, she leaves when she obtains a job at JH Food corporation.


A resident of surplus house. She has a live webcast wherein she eats massive amounts of food for her viewers' pleasure. Hye-young becomes Aileen's friend and confidant when she discovers her true identity.
A resident of surplus house. He graduated from the law school of an elite university, then spent the next ten years failing the bar exams. He is addicted to video games, and quickly develops a crush on Ha-ni.
A resident of surplus house. He grew up comfortably but has now been cut off by his parents. He is a computer genius.
The owner of surplus house. Seemingly an aging slacker, there is more to him than meets the eye. He once was Ma-nyeo's roommate.
The chairwoman of JH Food corporation, she falls in love with Ma-nyeo.
A manager of JH Food corporation, she's Jin-ah and Dae-ri's supervisor, and often speaks in French.
An employee of JH Food corporation and deputy section chief under Kim Jae-hwa.
A witch and former merman, he has become human. After the death of his wife, he runs a takoyaki stall to finance his daughter's studies abroad.
  • Kim Jin-hee as Han Gook-ja
Shi-kyung's sous-chef at JH Food.


The Idle Mermaid:
Original Sound Track
Soundtrack album by
ReleasedOctober 8, 2014 (2014-10-08)
LabelDanal Entertainment, J Music
1."그 사람과의 마지막 대화" (The Last Conversation)Ever-New4:18
Total length:4:18


Episode # Original broadcast date Title Rating (AGB Nielsen)
1 7 August 2014 개천에서 인어난다
(Mermaid from the Stream)
2 14 August 2014 원수는 한강다리 밑에서 만난다
(Meet Your Enemy Under the Han River Bridge)
3 21 August 2014 아닌 밤중에 진정한 사랑
(True Love During a Random Night)
4 28 August 2014 잉여도 밟으면 꿈틀한다
(Don't Step on a Mermaid's Dreams)
5 4 September 2014 공든 자소설 무너지랴
(Hard Work Is Never Wasted)
6 11 September 2014 하늘이 무너져도 솟아날 구멍은 없다
(It's the End of the World)
7 18 September 2014 아니 땐 심장이 두근대랴
(The Heart Pounds for a Reason)
8 25 September 2014 실패는 잉여의 어머니
(Failure Breeds Surplus)
9 2 October 2014 오르지 못할 나무 쳐다볼 순 있다
(You Can at Least Shoot for the Stars)
10 9 October 2014 물거품 무서워 사랑 못하랴!
(Think I Can't Love Because I'm Afraid of Bubbles?)

International broadcast[edit]

  •  Malaysia - Under the title Idle Mermaid, it was aired in the Malaysia on TV9 from February 6, 2018 to February 21 on Monday to Thursday at 6:00pm Malaysia Time
  •  Philippines - Under the title The Mermaid, it was aired in the Philippines on GMA Network from May 4, 2015 to June 12, 2015 at 5:05pm (PST) replacing Fall in Love with Me.
  •  Thailand - It was aired in Thailand on PPTV beginning November 1, 2015.[9]


  1. ^ The Idle Mermaid. tvN Drama via Youtube. 2014-07-18. Retrieved 2017-04-03.
  2. ^ Choi, Eun-hwa (June 25, 2014). "Surplus Princess Kicks Off with First Script Reading". enewsWorld. Retrieved August 18, 2014.
  3. ^ "Jo Bo Ah, On Joo Wan, and Song Jae Rim Confirmed to Star in New Drama The Mermaid". Soompi. June 11, 2014. Retrieved August 12, 2014.
  4. ^ Park, Ji-ryun (July 30, 2014). "Jo Bo Ah and Song Jae Rim Talk Underwater Kiss Scene in The Idle Mermaid". enewsWorld. Retrieved August 18, 2014.
  5. ^ "CJ E&M's New Romantic Fantasy Drama The Idle Mermaid Releases Official Posters". Hancinema. July 17, 2014. Retrieved August 12, 2014.
  6. ^ Park, Ji-ryun (September 26, 2014). "14-Episode Drama The Idle Mermaid to Wrap Up with 10th Episodes". enewsWorld. Retrieved September 27, 2014.
  7. ^ "SINOPSIS SINETRON MERMAID IN LOVE SCTV". 2016-05-20. Retrieved 2016-06-30.
  8. ^ "Duh, Sinetron 'Mermaid In Love' SCTV Mirip Drama Korea 'Surplus Princess'?". 2016-05-02. Retrieved 2016-06-30.
  9. ^ "Idle Mermaid เจ้าหญิงเงือกน้อย". PPTV (in Thai). Retrieved November 14, 2015.

External links[edit]