The Fiery Priest

Last updated
The Fiery Priest
The Fiery Priest.jpg
Promotional poster
Literal meaningHot Blooded Priest
Revised Romanization Yeolhyeolsaje
Written byPark Jae-bum
Directed by Lee Myung-woo
Music byGaemi (music manager)
Country of originSouth Korea
Original languageKorean
No. of episodes20 (1 hour)/40 (30 minutes) [lower-alpha 1]
  • Ahn Jae-hyun
  • Shin Sang-yoon
Camera setup Single-camera
Running time35 minutes [lower-alpha 1]
Production company Samhwa Networks
Original network SBS TV
Picture format 1080i (HDTV)
Audio format Dolby Digital
Original releaseFebruary 15 (2019-02-15) 
April 20, 2019 (2019-04-20)

The Fiery Priest (Korean : 열혈사제; Hanja : 熱血司祭) is a 2019 South Korean television series starring Kim Nam-gil, Kim Sung-kyun, Lee Hanee, Go Jun, and Keum Sae-rok. It was the first drama to air on SBS's Fridays and Saturdays timeslot, airing from February 15 to April 20, 2019. [2] [3]


The Fiery Priest is the highest rated miniseries drama that aired in 2019 on public broadcast according to Nielsen Korea. [4] The drama was a huge success and was one of the most popular dramas aired in 2019. Kim Nam-gil won numerous accolades for his portrayal of a priest with anger management issues. The action comedy drama also featured parodies from other movies and dramas, notably from Mr. Sunshine , Nameless Gangster: Rules of the Time , The Matrix , Reply 1988 and Along with the Gods: The Two Worlds .


Following the mysterious death of an elderly priest, an NIS agent turned priest (Kim Nam-gil) attempts to bring the culprits involved before law. The hilarious journey in taking down the gangsters and corrupt officials in the city is what follows. The journey is not so smooth when the corrupt prosecutor of the city (Lee Hanee) refuses to cooperate.



An ex-NIS agent who retired after an accident that happened during his last mission. He met Priest Lee and eventually decided to take the path as a priest and hoped for his sins to be forgiven. He was very close to Father Lee and thus is crazy to punish those who killed him. On the contrary to a priest, he is a short-tempered person who would throw a fit each minute.
A clumsy detective who is a pushover and always manipulated by his superintendent and seniors. Once a dedicated police, his life changed after the death of his former partner.
A corrupt prosecutor who covered up the crimes of Gudam's administrators including the police chief and head borough. She likes Hae-il for his good-looking face but constantly bickers with him.
A corrupt businessman who is the step-brother of Gudam's Head of Borough. He runs Daebum Trading and trade illegal things within. Once ranked as number two gangster in Yeosu, he often uses violence to achieve his goal.
A rookie detective at Gudam Police Station who is dedicated in helping Hae-il to reveal the truth behind Priest Lee's death. She secretly has a crush on Hae-il.


Local cartel

  • Jeong Young-ju as Jung Dong-ja
Gudam's Head of Borough and Hwang Cheol-bum step-sister.
  • Kim Hyung-mook as Kang Seok-tae
Chief prosecutor of Gudam and boss of Park Kyung-sun.
Gudam Police Station's corrupt superintendent and leader of Rising Sun, a nightclub with connections to the cartel.
  • Han Gi-jung as Park Won-moo
A corrupt assemblyman representing Gudam.
A con-artist and the leader of a religious cult "Maegak".
Leader of the Russian gang.

People at the Cathedral and believers

He is looked up as a father figure by Kim Hae-il and is a wise, soft-spoken man. His murder was touted as a suicide.
A gentle young priest at Gudam's Church. He trained to replace Priest Lee's position after his death. His real name is Han Woo-ram, a famous child actor who starred in an old, popular drama prior to becoming a priest.
Head nun at Gudam's church who constantly worry about Hae-il boldness in finding the truth. She is revealed to be a former well-known gambler nicknamed Ten-Tailed Fox who blamed herself for her brother's death.
  • Ahn Chang-hwan as Song Sac
A young man from Thailand who came to Gudam and work as a delivery boy to support his family. He was often bullied by Jang-ryeong for being a foreigner and best-friend with Oh Yo-han.
  • Go Kyu-pil as Oh Yo-han
A cheerful yet chubby part-timer who majored in astronomy but struggles to make a living. He did many part-time work and is best friend with Song Sac.

A psychiatrist.

People at the Police Station

  • Shin Dam-soo as Lee Myung-soo
  • Jeon Jeong-gwan as Heo Lig-gu
  • Ji Chan as Na Dae-gil
  • Kim Kwan-mo as Kim Kyung-ryul


Former NIS agent and Hae-il's team leader.
  • Lee Je-yeon as Kim Hoon-suk
  • Eum Moon-suk as Jang-ryong
  • Kim Joon-ha as altar boy
  • Lim Seung-min as altar boy
  • Ok Ye-rin as Lim Ji-eun
  • Young Ye-na as Hyun-joo
  • Jo Ah-in as Eun-ji
  • Choi Kwang-je as Anton
  • Jung Jae-kwang as Kim Keon-yong
  • Jeon Eun-mi as Wangmat Foods staff
  • Heo Jae-ho as Gi Hong-chan
The CEO of Great Taste Foods and Yong-moon's cousin.
  • Kang Un as Wangmat Foods manager
  • Lee Gyu-ho as Choco
A large chef who works at "Great Taste Foods" and acts as the muscle. Despite his towering size, he is easily knocked out by Hae-il but reemerges as backup later on.
  • Cha Chung-hwa as Ahn Dul-ja
  • Yoo Kyung-ah as nursery nun
  • Song Young-hak as former detective

Special appearances


The first script reading took place on October 26, 2018 at the SBS Ilsan Production Center in Tanhyun, South Korea. [6]

The Fiery Priest was first scheduled to air as a Monday-Tuesday drama following My Strange Hero , but due to SBS deciding to cancel the weekend special drama time slot (Saturday nights at 21:05 KST) after Fates & Furies , it became the network's first Friday-Saturday night drama. Haechi was then chosen to follow My Strange Hero. [7]

This series marks Lee Myung-woo's last project for SBS, after 12 years of partnership. In October 2019, he moved to Taewon Entertainment. [8]

Original soundtrack

The Fiery Priest OST
Soundtrack album by
Various artists
Genre Soundtrack

Part 1

Released on February 22, 2019 (2019-02-22)
1."Our Neighbourhood HERO" (우리동네 HERO)
  • Hong In-ho
  • Kim Soo-jung
  • Go Jin-young
  • Lee Jin-ho
Norazo 3:11
2."Our Neighbourhood HERO" (Inst.) 
  • Go Jin-young
  • Lee Jin-ho
Total length:6:22

Part 2

Released on March 8, 2019 (2019-03-08)
1."Breeze"HaNaZigZag Note Punch (feat. Gree)3:53
2."Breeze" (Inst.) ZigZag Note 3:53
Total length:7:46

Part 3

Released on March 29, 2019 (2019-03-29)
  • Ra.L
  • La.Q
Gaemi Jung Dong-ha (feat. La.Q)2:56
2."Fighter" (Inst.) Gaemi 2:56
Total length:5:52

Part 4

Released on April 5, 2019 (2019-04-05)
  • Chin Chilla
  • Lee Myung-woo
  • Park Yoon-seo
  • Gaemi
Chin Chilla (feat. Ga Eun)2:52
2."Paradise" (Inst.) 
  • Park Yoon-seo
  • Gaemi
Total length:5:44

Part 5

Released on April 12, 2019 (2019-04-12)
1."Joy"Andy PlattsAndy PlattsAndy Platts3:54
2."Joy" (Inst.) Andy Platts 3:54
Total length:7:48

Part 6

Released on April 19, 2019 (2019-04-19)
  • Gaemi
  • earattack
Kim Yeon-ji 2:54
2."Victory" (Inst.) 
  • Gaemi
  • earattack
Total length:5:48


The Fiery Priest: South Korea viewers per episode (millions)
EpisodesEpisode number
Source: Audience measurement performed nationwide by Nielsen Media Research. [9]
Average TV viewership ratings
Ep.Original broadcast dateTitleAverage audience share
AGB Nielsen [10] TNmS
Nationwide Seoul Nationwide
1February 15, 2019A Priest in Trouble10.4% (9th)11.6% (7th)9.3%
2Hae-il Moves to Gudam13.8% (4th)15.6% (3rd)11.9%
3February 16, 2019Hae-il Meets Cheol-bum8.6%(14th)9.5%(12th)7.4%
4Father Lee's Death11.2% (9th)12.6% (9th)9.1%
5February 22, 2019Hae-il Investigates the Death of Father Lee12.8% (5th)14.7% (3rd)11.0%
6The Case Gets Closed16.2% (2nd)18.5% (1st)13.3%
7February 23, 2019The Church Gets Desolate13.0% (4th)14.8% (4th)11.1%
8A Cooperative Investigation15.7% (3rd)18.0% (3rd)13.4%
9March 1, 2019Cooperative Investigation Begins14.0% (4th)15.9% (3rd)11.9%
10Hae-il Investigates On His Own17.2% (2nd)19.5% (1st)14.3%
11March 2, 2019Hae-il And Seung-ah Find The Witnesses13.1% (4th)15.0% (4th)10.4%
12Dae-young's Old Partner16.0% (3rd)18.2% (3rd)12.8%
13March 8, 2019Kyeong-seon Meets Dong-ja15.3% (4th)17.1% (3rd)11.9%
14The Corrupt Food Service Company17.7% (2nd)19.7% (1st)14.2%
15March 9, 2019To Tame A Fighting Dog12.5% (5th)14.6% (4th)10.8%
16Raid Wangmat Foods16.1% (3rd)18.3% (3rd)13.7%
17March 15, 2019Hae-il Reports The Bribery Case15.4% (4th)17.4% (3rd)11.5%
18Kyeong-seon Is Back17.5% (2nd)19.5% (2nd)13.7%
19March 16, 2019A New Lead Comes Up14.2% (4th)15.7% (4th)12.0%
20A Covert Infiltration18.1% (3rd)20.3% (3rd)14.3%
21March 22, 2019Escape from the Villa14.6% (3rd)16.5% (3rd)12.3%
22Save Him17.2% (2nd)19.0% (1st)14.9%
23March 23, 2019Hae-il's Past Is Revealed14.8% (4th)16.7% (4th)12.6%
24Hae-il Saves Kyeong-seon17.9% (3rd)19.6% (3rd)15.5%
25March 29, 2019Break-in to Kyeong-seon's House15.3% (3rd)17.4% (3rd)11.9%
26Kyeong-seon Cooperating with Hae-il18.5% (2nd)20.9% (1st)14.6%
27March 30, 2019Hae-il and Kyeong-seon Devising a Scheme15.6% (4th)17.4% (4th)14.0%
28Kyeong-seon and Seung-ah Entering the Lair of Anton18.2% (3rd)19.8% (3rd)16.1%
29April 5, 2019Scheme to Find out the Owner of Rising Moon15.5% (3rd)17.7% (3rd)13.0%
30The Secret of Sister Kim19.8% (2nd)22.2% (1st)16.9%
31April 6, 2019Let Me Teach You A Lesson17.7% (4th)19.9% (4th)15.7%
32Father Kim, Go to Argentina19.4% (3rd)21.6% (2nd)17.3%
33April 12, 2019Scheme to Sneak in the Safe16.2% (3rd)18.6% (3rd)
34The Safe and People Locked in There20.3% (1st)22.8% (1st)
35April 13, 2019Cheol-bum Asks Hae-il For Cooperation17.2% (4th)18.9% (4th)
36Father Han Trying To Persuade Dong-ja20.0% (3rd)22.1% (2nd)
37April 19, 2019Father Han Falling into a Critical Condition16.7% (3rd)18.4% (2nd)14.6%
38The Truth of Father Lee's Death20.3% (1st)22.2% (1st)18.1%
39April 20, 2019Showdown18.6% (4th)21.1% (4th)15.9%
40Unexpected Visit22.0%(3rd)24.7%(1st)18.5%
Average16.1%18.1% [lower-alpha 2]
  • In the table above, the blue numbers represent the lowest ratings and the red numbers represent the highest ratings.
  • N/A denotes that the rating is not known.

Awards and nominations

2019 55th Baeksang Arts Awards Best Actor Kim Nam-gil Nominated [11]
Busan International Film Festival Best ActorWon
Korean Broadcasters Association AwardsWon
14th Seoul International Drama Awards Excellent Korean DramaThe Fiery PriestWon [12]
Best Actor Kim Nam-gil Won
12th Korea Drama Awards Best DramaThe Fiery PriestNominated [13]
Best ScreenplayPark Jae-bumNominated
Star of the Year Award Go Jun Won
Popular Character Award (Male)Ahn Chang-hwanWon
32nd Grimae Awards Best Actor Kim Nam-gil Won [14]
Best Picture (Drama)Yoon Dae-young, Park Jong-kiWon
SBS Drama Awards Grand Prize (Daesang) Kim Nam-gil Won [15]
Top Excellence Award, Actor in a Mid-length DramaNominated
Top Excellence Award, Actress in a Mid-length Drama Lee Hanee Won
Excellence Award, Actor in a Mid-length Drama Kim Sung-kyun Won
Best Supporting TeamThe Fiery PriestWon
Best Supporting Actor Go Jun Won
Wayve AwardThe Fiery PriestWon
Producer's Award Kim Nam-gil Nominated
Best New Actor Eum Moon-suk Won
Best New Actress Keum Sae-rok Won


  1. 1 2 In order to circumvent Korean laws that prevent commercial breaks in the middle of an episode, what would previously have been aired as single 70 minute episodes are now being repackaged as two 35 minute episodes, with two episodes being shown each night with a commercial break between the two. [1]
  2. Due to some ratings not recorded, the exact average rating is unknown.

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