China and South Korea have each done a relatively good job in COVID-19 prevention and control. Active cooperation between the two governments in communications and medical materials improved bilateral relations. Opening a "fast track" for businessmen after the epidemic was brought under control shows that each recognized the effectiveness of the other's efforts at preventing the spread of the virus. However, there is an obvious cognitive mismatch in public opinion. Chinese highly appraise South Korea's prevention and control of the pandemic and are grateful for its assistance to China with materials after the outbreak, while South Korean sentiment toward China is complicated, and their assessment of China's response to the pandemic is seen in China as unreasonably negative. This article reviews these responses, offering explanations for what are seen as misperceptions rooted in ideological bias and the impact of the conservative media in South Korea.