With this drama, sometimes you don’t even need the words to know exactly what they are feeling in that moment. it’s written all over their faces and how they look at each other.
* I love this drama so much it hurts sometimes from the emotional response I get from watching their scenes together.
This shot of JIW made me wish again for the upteenth time that I had watched Return of Iljimae. Even from this one glimpse where he was kidding around and posing, you could tell how intense and mesmerizing he must have been in that role. Next to KSH, JIW was my second reason for checking out this drama and so far he is doing his role justice.
The other day I was headed home when I noticed how full the moon was. It was hanging low in the horizon and looked so perfect, I continued to gaze up at it as I walked. Someone said when they look up at the moon now, they think of this show. That made me wonder if this drama gained more attention cuz of its constant reference to the sun and moon seeping into our subconscious so that it stays with us. Personally, I don’t look at the moon and think of Wol, I keep wondering why this love story is sweeping us off of our feet. Is it perhaps the ideal romantic story of one man’s unfailing love and devotion to the same person all those years that just gets to us or is it the range of emotions that flood Hwon’s face every time he stares at Wol. Whatever it is that piqued our interest in this drama, what is keeping us firmly rooted in our seats staring intently at the screen every Wed/Thurs night is to witness something magical that only comes around once in a while. When all the kdrama elements align and mesh to form the perfect balance of great acting, moving dialogue, amazing cinematography, and an intriguing plot that makes us giddy with excitement, how could we possibly look away.
If you check out all the BTS videos for Moon, you will see how much KSH likes to joke around. He always speaks with “saguek talk” with HS and they are so funny together. I thought these two shots were the cutest cuz in the top one, KSH is actually pretty enough to play a girl and they look adorable together. In the second one, I wondered what Woon said to her or if he just decided to make this cute face to B.
Here are some more stills from the Highcut photoshoot. Guess it doesn’t matter that they are not wearing the flower hats anymore, just these poses alone and holding up flowers makes them look almost as girly as those hats. Part of me wanted to buy this Highcut issue last week, but the thought of having to stare at these photos again gave me a change of heart. If you look at the choice of clothing for these shots, the stylist seems to have mixed up the concept of “gender neutral” with “gender confusing.” The actor who plays young Y was so funny on Strong Heart. His fluffy skirt attire was a riot. Hands down the most hilarious outfit I have ever seen a guy wear on a variety show.
I was really hoping they weren’t filming during this snow storm last week, but here is visual proof that they did. During one of those BTS videos, you could see the actor who plays HS putting heat packs inside Woon’s clothes in the back and KSH put one in the front. Guess Woon was the coldest out of the 3. Those green heat packs last for 24 hrs so they go through over 40 of them KSH said. I can’t imagine how difficult it must have been for these actors to brave the cold and continue filming when it snowed this much practically the whole day. It must feel awful to film day in and day out wearing only these thin hanboks. As someone who is a total baby when it comes to cold weather, it impresses the heck out of me cuz they don’t let the weather affect their performance at all. In a way, they are really earning the accolade they are getting at this moment. Anyway can praise a drama that does well in the summer with great weather, but dramas like Secret Garden, OB, and Moon that endure the harsh weather conditions and still come out on top deserve extra plaudit.
Here are the links to watch live if anyone wants to use them
wubisheng still on with this link: http://www.wubisheng.cn/html/hanju/zxtv/?id=KBS2# (click on mbc found on the right side, below (sbs, ubc 1064k)
TVU is working too: http://www.tvunetworks.com/watchTV/index.html#c=87923
another link and this one with closed captions:
http://ionair.tv/main.php (registration needed, then click MBC)
After M grabs Wol and asks do you recognize me. The other guard asks who M is and orders others to pull him off and M yells at them: whose body are you daring to lay hands on. M identifies himself as the prince. The guards back off, so M asks Wol again: do you know who I am? he starts to say where they met but N suddenly shows up and asks M to let go of wol’s hand. N asks the guards to hurry and take Wol away. M calls out “wait a minute” as the guards take wol away to H. N blocks M’s path. M: whose path are you blocking right now?
H tells himself- there is no way/it’s not possible (it’s her)
Wol comes in and he looks at her accusingly
N asks M to go back- you cant do this. M: what are saying I cant do. She says how wol is just a human amulet and that’s all. N asks how he could complicate his life over a piece of paper. he says it doesnt matter cuz his life is not worth more than a piece of paper. N says as always this is not his fate. M gets angry and asks: who assigned such a fate. N: as a shaman, I am daring to tell you what the god’s say. M: that is something for me to decide -not the god’s. N: not just you but that child will be endanger as well along with you. N says something about how Wol could be caught between a war. do not to look for her again. If you care about that child even a little you have to stay far away from her. Woon looks at them
H yells – hurry and answer me –I asked where were you born. She says she doesnt know for sure. she heard it was far from the doseon. he asks if that means she kept living in wonyang. she says she followed her godmother and wandered around and lived here and there. he asks where her parents and siblings are. Wol: I dont have any. while growing up, the people I lived with are my family. H: does that mean you are an orphan. Wol: at one time I had them but they abandoned me when they realized my psychic abilities so now I dont remember them. H: so that means you werent an orphan from the start. do you remember what kind of parents and siblings you had? she explains how a shaman has to lose their memory at the same time as when they get their abilities and must cut off all memories of their past. so I dont think of it and I dont remember my past. H: you have to cut off all memories of your past? Wol: yes. H asks her to let go of that deal/oath and try to remember her past-where were you born and where did you grow up-what was your name before you became a shaman.
Wol cries and says: your majesty. he asks when, where, and by who did she lose her past memory. he cries and asks: by some chance, in your past memories am I not in there? she cries and begs him to stop. She says how she cant give him the answer he wants no matter what he asks. it is cuz I am not the person you want. I don’t know how much I resemble that person. if you have anything else to ask, please ask that person yourself and confirm.
N yells at Jansil-do you not hear me telling you to leave right now. Jansil begs and says I was wrong. N: if you left you shouldnt have come back-why came back here like a thieving cat. Jansil begs and says I have no place to go so please dont kick me out. N says how she warned her not to talk so why couldnt you keep your mouth shut. you are no longer a shaman for the royal court so leave seungsucheong right now. you got that? Jansil begs and cries and says please forgive me. S says how jansil is always doing that so just scold a bit and end it. Jansil: I did it cuz I felt sorry for brother. just one thing, I just wanted to give brother one thing. the king has everything but brother doesnt…N turns and glares at jansil.
M thinks to himself and wonders: Wol, if it really is you, did you already meet the king first. if it’s really you, are you staying by the king’s side.
N yells at her to leave this place right now. there is slow motion and Jansil becomes M. Jansil stands up and sort of talks back to N-mother, why do you tell me to live for others.
M meets his mom and she asks what brings him here at this late hour. he asks what she is doing at this hour. she says as always she is praying for the king to be safe (his health). M gets mad and asks: just once- before you say the king’s name – couldnt you say my name first? she asks how he could say such a disloyal thing. M cries and yells out all the things she told him over the years: disloyal, endure, throw it away, give it up, hide it, dont waver -arent you sick of it mother? his mom asks: why are you like this? M: Even once. just once.”do what you want. it’s ok for you to be greedy about one thing.” Couldn’t you have told me that? I am no longer going to live for others sake. Jansil’s words echo his: laugh when I want to laugh. get angry when I want to get angry. steal (her) if I want to steal and I will live like that.
Wol comes in and Jansil asks her to run away with her. It’s M’s words spoken through Jansil. Run away with me. If it was me I would have protected you. If it was me, I wouldn’t have left you alone like this. If it was me….N holds Jansil’s head and tells her to stop before I rip your mouth off. Jansil comes back to herself. N asks other shamans to drag Jansil out. Wol asks why N is doing this. N says no one is allowed to let Jansil back in or they have to face what N will do with her powers (basically scaring the other girls to obey) wol starts to go after Jansil so N asks do you want to get kicked out too. Jansil gets dragged out
Wol sticks up for Jansil saying: like me, she still doesnt have control over her powers. Even if she made a mistake…but N tells Wol to stop trying to change her mind and go rest. S tells Wol to leave N alone cuz N has to be this strict for Jansil to come to her senses. Wol says jansil has no place to go and doesnt want her wandering in this cold weather. but S isnt so worried about Jansil and says in the end, she will be back and N will act like she can’t win and take her back. That they experiences this more than once or twice while living together.
Wol goes in to talk to N. N says don’t open your mouth if you are going to bring up Jansil. Wol: then I will leave seungsucheong too. N: are you threatening me. Wol: it’s not a threat. N: then are you sincere about leaving seungsucheong. Wol says long time ago, you said if i wanted, you would cover for me and i could run away with S. N: why are you asking me that. Wol: just cuz S, jansil, and me too. It doesnt seem like this place suits the three of us so i am asking. N: why did you make such a decision. Why did you think of leaving? Wol: what you said was right. with a confused heart, i shouldnt have stayed by that person’s side. I realized there is nothing at all that I can do for him. I was trying to ease his burden, not confuse him. but it seems like i am making him confused. The person he needs is not me. It would be better if I leave, that will help that person.
H is staring at all of YW’s letters. HS says H didn’t sleep at all and asks him to rest for awhile. H is remembering what wol said about how she resembles that person and H should confirm with that person himself. H tells himself – that child is already dead so how could I meet her to confirm. He remembers how YW said her dad was bringing medicine and soon she wont be able to see H forever. H asks woon what this means. Woon says it sounds like she knew she will die ( as if she was preparing for death) H says he thought the same at first but these words sound like if she takes the medicine her father brings then she will die. HS doesnt think her father would kill his own daughter. H says that is what is strange. also there were other things that were strange and it wasnt just one or two things. she was so healthy and died suddenly.HS asks what H is being suspicious about. H: what if her death was not a normal death from illness. HS points out that would make her father an accomplice to his daughter’s murder. H asks Woon if Y would know anything, but Woon says Y was sent away and always regretted not being able to protect his sister. H asks then if there is a way to know what the last medicine YW took was. Woon says there is no way of knowing cuz her father ordered it to be kept quiet or something. (all this was for H to come to the conclusion that her death was a conspiracy and her father played a part in it.
Y is packed to go. He remembers his conversation with H. Y wondered if he should go on the trip. But H said he doesn’t mean anything else except for Y to slowly take a trip around have a relaxing trip. His mom asks to come in. she says how he long he will be gone if he leaves now and asks if he said goodbye to the princess. He says he didn’t yet. She tells him to hurry and go cuz the princess will be waiting for him and to console her sad heart. Y says he will.
MW is crying when Y goes inside. She turns away from him so he asks why she is avoiding him. I am leaving so aren’t you going to let me see your face. She asks if she couldn’t follow him. He says the road wont be good for her and he is going on the king’s order. She doesn’t like that they will be parted for a long time. he says since she is waiting he will hurry and come back. She thinks he doesn’t like her cuz she is childish like this all the time. He says he doesnt. She says cuz of her he cant do the work he was intended to do and his home isnt well off so he must resent her a lot. He says he doesnt resent her. MW: that’s a lie. He takes her hand and says how she saved his family.that she brought laughter back to them when they were going through such a terrible time after his sister died. Just for that alone he is grateful to her over and over. MW: then you won’t abandon me? Y: why are you saying that again. She makes him promise not to throw her away. He reminds her how he already put his life on the line and promised he wouldn’t. she says even if he doesnt lay anything on the line, she will trust him. His promise not to throw her away, his promise to come back quickly too, she will trust all of it.even if she cries every night she will endure and wait
Minister talks about how Y left for his trip.if the king was going to send someone on a trip he should have sent me. He goes on about how famous that place is for having beautiful gisaengs like pearls. What a waste. He says how Y won’t appreciate all that. Yoon says he has to break him once to make him (H)come to his senses about what the objective is.
Hwon says rumors are fast when ministers bring up Y’s trip. H asks what is the problem. Minister says Y went somewhere he was forbidden to go and now all the supporters for Y are lined up. And wants H to take back his order. H points out Y lived quietly. That Y won’t cause trouble and the princess trusts him and doesn’t worry about Y so that is why H told Y to get some air and go on that trip.(H is insisting it is just a trip and that’s all) other minister wants H to change the location of where Y is going cuz it’s dangerous. (cuz ministers think Y is going on that trip for other purposes -as in trying to gather supporters) Yoon and others cite how Y is not supposed to act as a civil servant since Y is married to the princess.
H walks out and says to himself – it wasn’t enough that you cut off Y’s wings but now you are trying to make me afraid (by threatening Y’s safety). H stops walking so HS asks why. H tells Woon that he is going to have some fun
H throws down books and gets mad and yells at the ministers about how they didn’t take care of the citizens complaints to the king and how they were against Y going on the trip. He was distracting those ministers while Woon went into the other room to find some other books. Woon hands them off to HS. HS smiles at H to signal they got what they needed
H is looking over the books woon took. Woon asks if he found anything. H: no it’s not here. there is nothing that is strange at all. I thought I could find out details about what happened 8 yrs ago when YW died, but all that is written is that she died from an illness.if I think about it again, didn’t it happen too suddenly. She was healthy so she shouldn’t have died like that.why…of all times.. why did it have to be at that time (H is questioning the timing of her death cuz it happened right before they were about to get married).
B asks the servant spy questions.B: what did you just say – that the talisman resembled someone? Spy says it’s not certain,but she heard that.B asks her to be more specific. Girl says the king yelled and the girl told the king: I don’t know how much I resembled that person but I am not that person. If you have any more questions, ask that person yourself and confirm” that’s what she said.
B walks by and hears crying from the place YW stayed at. B asks if her aide didn’t hear a girl crying from that place just now. Aide looks at other girls and they shake their heads as in we didnt hear anything.
B goes to see dowager and asks if anyone is inside. B is told the shaman from seungsucheong is there with the dowager. B: a shaman from seungsucheong?
N says as the dowager ordered she had the date of cunsummation moved up. Dowager says N did well. She praises N’s goddaughter and if the night of consummation is a success, she will give a big reward to that child. N says to tell the truth, I have something to tell you about that problem. Dowager: go ahead. N:I am thinking of taking away the talisman. Dowager: what do you mean take away the amulet with the night of consummation coming up.N explains even without the strength of the amulet now, the King’s health will go back to being safe. If he keeps the talisman that isn’t absorbing any evil spirits by his side it might harm him ( be less effective) Dowager worries about if they take away the child and H gets sick again so N says the amulet for his health and the amulet for the night of consummation are different. So starting from tonight N wants to use that amulet for bringing the queen and king together for their night of consummation. Dowager asks if there was an amulet like that. So N says the amulet for the night of consummation is for that purpose. dowager finally agrees and says there is nothing they can’t do for the sake of the night of consummation to be a success so do what you want. (*i love how N could sell the dowager any line of bs and the dowager just buys it)
N goes out and B is there. N goes over and says hello. B: i heard you came back from grandmother. B compliments N about her daughter for making the King’s health improve. And B asks if that girl resembles that dead child Heo YW. N: why are you asking that.B: I was curious and there are no secrets in the palace. B makes a comment that unless the girl resembled YW the king wouldn’t keep her by his side so easily.does she resemble that child? N says her daughter is just a normal girl. B asks to see that child for herself in person. b starts to ask when is a good time but N asks questions that scare B. N: your face looks like it is filled with concerns. when did you start hearing crying sounds from that place.don’t worry, my goddaughter is going to leave the palace soon. your night of consummation will be moved up. Everything will happen the way you want.
N tells Wol that she got permission from the dowager so starting from today Wol doesnt need to go to the king. I did what you wanted so why do you look disappointed. Wol: no it’s just that I feel bad for inconveniencing you. N tells her to prepare to leave with S tm. Wol: I will do that.
Wol gets handed a letter from jansil. Jansil says:Wol unni it’s Jansil. You worried didn’t you. Right now thanks to someone good, I am doing well. Who that person is….someone really cool/impressive and kind. (It’s M) he is good looking and a free spirit. Thanks to that person, i am staying at (she names it) i have a favor to ask. could you please pack my stuff for me. But you must keep it a secret from godmother.also don’t bring S unni. When I saw her this morning, she was with godmother.
Wol goes and packs up Jansil’s stuff and finds something wrapped. It’s the hairpin that H gave YW. She hears voices so she puts it away
H is thinking and saying stuff in his head about how YW took the medicine that her father gave her and died.and her father who gave YW the medicine already died. Everyone who knows about this are all dead and not here. there is no one who is still alive…there is one person alive. The person who served the closest to the king. The former sang seon Jung. H says aloud: Woon ah.
(*it’s the person who took care of H’s father - just like HS serves Hwon, his father the former king had someone serving him and that’s the guy Hwon is going to go look for. Dramaok explained on soompi about this: Sang-Seon is a title. it is a high-level eunuch rank.in the court, there are 2 individuals with that title of Sang-Seon. one of them is in charge of personally attending to the king’s meals.)
HS comes inside with his hands cold. He wonders why H said to make a snowman suddenly. He goes in saying he made the snowman H asked for. He goes in and H isnt there. HS yells out: your majesty!
H pretends to hear HS screaming again and shivers and sticks his finger in his ears. Woon asks why H is doing that. H smiles and says: why ask when you already know. did you say his home was over there. Woon: yes your majesty
H goes to meet the man who served H’s father. the man’s servant says: did you say you were sent by the king. H: is your master inside? The servant lies and says the man is sick and went far away. But H sees the shoes and knows he is lying. H yells loudy for the man hiding inside to hear. the king has something urgent to talk about with him. H asks the servant: what do you think. do you think your owner will take long to return or do you think he will come right away? servant isnt sure. H: then tell your owner when he comes, no matter how much he tries to hide it, the truth will be revealed. even if he avoids right now, in the end he will be punished more severely. I am leaving for now but if he doesnt show up by tm, then instead of the palace, he will be met in jail. tell him this.
Woon: you knew he was in the room so why didnt you meet him? H: he lived for 8 yrs keeping his mouth shut and if he avoids me that will be cuz he is burying the truth about my father. if we rush into this, what if he kills himself. then we will lose what we want to know. today I just wanted to confirm my guess/assumptions. woon: can I ask what you are guessing? H: that YW’s death was not natural. H says if by any chance she didnt die from illness and was murdered, why his father buried that truth. He clearly must have had a reason to do that. (as in his father had no other choice) He must have left that reason somewhere. My head hurts. since we came outside, let’s get some air.
H and woon walk by M and Jansil nearby. M is watching Jansil eat. M tells Jansil to go back to seungsucheong after she finishes eating. She chokes so he asks if she is ok. she says: can I not go back to seungsucheong brother? M: just cuz you are afraid how much longer are you going to run away? listen to me and go back and beg till your hands become your feet. she says even if she wants to beg, she wont have hands or feet. cuz as soon as she goes in, they will be torn off. he says her face looks sweet so how could she say such gruesome things. jansil: my godmother means what she says. if she says it once she does it. she mutters that it will be hard to stay intact. M asks why jansil helped him then if she is so scared. Jansil: cuz you were the first - for someone to put his life on the line and save me-cuz you were the first brother. I cant remember the faces of my parents who threw me away at all. but you carrying me on your back and running away, I never forgot your face even once. He says that’s similar to him. Jansil: then were you abandoned by your parents too and have someone you couldnt forget even in death? M: it’s similar. Jansil: what kind of person is the one you couldnt forget even in death? M: someone very very pretty and smart. someone who made me feel comforted just to look at her. She caused me a lot of pain, but that person also made me really happy. Jansil: then I called wol unni for nothing. M: what did you just say. Jansil: I called wol unni to let you meet her.
Wol walks by the paper place and remembers her conversation with S about the apology letter. Then she passes by the blacksmiths and remembers how S said she would go there for just a minute. then how N told her to run away cuz it’s not a fate she can handle while remembering H playing soccer. she remembers H taking the mask off and asking: do you recognize me? did you want me to forget you. Wol gets dizzy and almost falls but H catches her and holds her up. they stare at each other.
Ministers are walking by and one is raving about a new drinking place. he is impatient and says he will run ahead to reserve a spot for them
H and Wol walk together. H fumbles for conversation. He asks what brings her out here. oh yeah you said you came out cuz you had something to do. I am here for a business outing– oh yeah I told you already awhile ago. She asks why he came out without his guard. He says even if you cant see him woon is around somewhere watching over me. H: can a girl who is a talisman wonder around during the day like this. no wonder I felt pain here and there after I woke up. now I know that reason. since the talisman who is not saving her powers is watching over me, it’s no wonder I get headaches. She asks if he is feeling unwell. H: I was just kidding. how do you not know a joke. Wol: that’s good. she says she will be going now since she might be getting in his way. she quickly leaves as he calls out “wait a minute.”
H sees a minister coming and looks away. woon comes over and reports that minister Yoon and others are headed this way so they have to hurry and go before they run into them. H reluctantly agrees
Wol walks away and turns back to look at H. she sees the minister yelling at some kid who had bumped into the minister and made his clothes dirty. minister goes on about how expensive the silk is and asks how the kid is going to pay for this. Kid says I was wrong – please forgive me. but the minister says he hates people who just use words to get out of things. he wants the kid to pay for it with his body instead of his mouth. (meaning make him work off the cost) he orders the kid to be dragged home to cut a lot of wood. Wol says let the kid go. that if there are lots of people, it’s only natural to run into each other. the kid didn’t do it on purpose so please forgive him. Minister says how his silk is so precious that it cant be washed with water so he wants the price for it and if the kid cant pay for it then he will use the kid as his servants so what is the problem. she says how the minister looks like he is high up. he says her eyes got it right and says his title. she says since he is so high up, he should be more lenient. He says he was going to let her go cuz she was pretty, but how dare you talk so big in front of me. she makes a stab about his clothes. how korea has lot of nice fabrics but he rejects them to get imported fabric from another country so what will the citizens think.
He orders her to be taken away. she says to let go of her, but suddenly the guy is shoved away and H grabs her hand and runs off with wol. minister yells for them to be caught. H and Wol run into Yoon who looks at them as they run awa. Yoon thinks to himself : the king?
H yells at wol. How does a girl like you not have anything that scares you. What would you have done if you were dragged away to jail. she says she couldnt stand by and act like she didnt see something unfair going on. He says since the kid got the minister’s clothes dirty. the minister could ask for the kid to pay for it. She starts to ask if H knows how expensive imported frabrics are until she sees that H’s clothes are made from that and changes her statement to - since the minister sits in a high position he should not care about his appearance and be more humble (and not do stuff like that to the kid) H and Wol recite together some parable about how a king should live more simply so his subjects emulate that. She said a few lines and he added some. she makes a valid point so H says sarcastically how could a shaman girl like you always say things that are so right. She looks away towards the banner and puppet show setup nearby, so he says how dare you look away while I am talking. where are you looking. He looks too. Another guy comes over and tells them to come and watch for themselves instead of staring from a distance. he says it’s about a first love and the first row seats are empty. he says they are taking too long to decide and will lose their spots.
He grabs H’s arm and says follow me-you wont regret it. he asks H for money for showing them to their seats where they can see well. so Wol pays the guy. guy says have fun. H sits down and Wol sits next to him. H says he will pay her back so don’t worry. They watch the puppet show. girl puppet says she did something wrong. king puppet asks what she did that was so wrong. she says for not recognizing him at first sight. H is bored and uncomfortable.
H starts to stretch and stuff. People behind him tell him to move his head cuz they cant see. He stretches his arms so they say move your arm. So H yells back: what are you doing – don’t you know who I am. The puppet show dialogue is saying stuff about the king. as the king, if I cant have you, what purpose/meaning does this position hold then. H doesnt like hearing those words. he asks if she is enjoying this. She says it’s fun. He stares at her.
M is waiting with jansil for Wol. He says she is late. He wonders if jansil gave her the right directions. He covers up jansil cuz she fell asleep. He goes looking for wol
H is still staring at wol. She asks did you meet that person. did you meet her. H: I cant meet her. Wol: why weren’t you able to meet her. why couldn’t you meet her. H: cuz that child is already not in this world. Wol: how. H: it’s my fault. I was supposed to protect her but I didnt get to protect her. I had many things to say to her but I didn’t get to say them. So I couldn’t send that child away yet. They say shamans can speak to ghosts/spirits – is that true. Wol: I heard that’s so. H: then will you tell that child something for me. wol: what do you want me to tell her? H: that I liked her very very much.
H smiles at her and M watches the two of them and looks away with tears in his eyes.
*I love that Hwon finally got to confess what he always wanted to say to YW these past 8 yrs. his smile is the same as when he was a kid when he was happy just to be looking at her. That smile seemed triumphant like a kid who finally got his wish.
wol says as H walks away in the dark: today I wont be able to stay by your side your majesty
M basically tells Wol not to look at someone else – i dont have the confidence to go through it twice -wont I do (can’t it be me)? the person I want is you. (*in korean he said ” the person I am looking at is you”)
H to wol: who told you to leave just cuz you feel like it? whose permission did you get to leave? who said you did everything you could. I am confused. Until I know what this feeling is don’t you dare go far away from my side.
This episode is exactly what I had hoped for. All of our characters made progress, and even the political plot made a step forward. On top of that, we practically got a “date” out of H and Wol!
I know that we all never stop raving about Kim Soo Hyun’s performance in this drama, and I really don’t need to talk about it at this point, but once again his acting seemed like a noteworthy part of the episode. The way he switches so deftly between a borderline-crazy king and a heartbroken little boy is completely believable, which is impressive considering his age. He has me wrapped around his finger in every scene, and emotionally I’m reminded a bit of Ji Sung in Protect the Boss. PTB is a sillier show of course, but both actors show layers of emotion and juggle the many facets of their personalities so expertly that they really bring their characters to life, and make them more compelling than they would ever be on paper. This whole “juggling” act also gives every scene of H’s the potential to be surprising, and I love that. That moment when he softens (like when his eyes widen after Wol asks him to stop) is never fully expected, and as a result it hits home like a ton of bricks.
I was also really struck this episode by how incredibly powerful N’s performance has been. There’s nothing wrong with the way she portrays Mi Suk in Ojakgyo Brothers, but it feels like she was made to play this part, and is completely owning the role. I didn’t even resent her for her unexpectedly harsh treatment of Jansil because she did it with such conviction and strength that it seemed like the right thing to do. I practically wanted to cheer for her when she so easily handled B and diverted her from her request to see Wol. She’s constantly being shouldered with dilemmas that should have had nothing to do with her, and yet she takes it all head-on and acts with intelligence and determination. She initially just seemed like a character that was necessary to propel the plot forward, but instead I’m finding her incredibly admirable and likable. I hope something horrible doesn’t end up happening to her!
Did anyone else have a brief moment where they thought Jansil might turn evil? When she she suddenly got serious and talked about how she was going to live for herself from now on, it seemed like she was starting down some dark path. Thankfully she quickly regained her cheery demeanor (I suppose Jung Il Woo has that effect on people) and my worries were alleviated, but I’m pleased to see that her character is more complex than I expected (I didn’t realize until after the live broadcast that she was channeling M, but I love that she was).
I generally find MW’s antics more endearing than annoying, and just when I thought that I was reaching my limit, she threw in some self-deprecating comments to make me feel sorry for her all over again. I can hardly hold it against her for being a cry-baby when she knows she’s that way and feels bad about it, and I bet that Y feels the same way. He doesn’t resent her and if anything seems rather fond of her, but I still think that it’s difficult for him to be attracted to her and see her as an adult woman. It does seem like MW is taking baby steps toward maturity, and I’m curious to see where her growth ends up taking her.
As expected, my heart broke for M a little more today. It was obvious that he would never get the girl, but it seems too cruel that he already saw her with H, before even confirming her identity. I bet that seeing the two of them together made him even more certain that Wol is YW (echoes of the past) and I can’t think of a more horrible way to become certain of the truth. I’m a bit worried that we’re going to start seeing a darker side to M, now that he said he’s going to live for himself, and especially since he regrets not fighting for YW as a kid. He has to fight for her this time around, which makes me think that an ending to the bromance is inevitable, and coming soon.
I love all the little surprises that this drama has to offer. When Wol fell, I completely expected M to catch her since he knew she was coming. When I saw H’s face, my own face lit up, and I’m not sure if it’s because I wanted it to be H that caught her, or because I was happy to be surprised. My elation was quickly replaced by guilt on M’s behalf, but I love a show that has my emotions flip-flopping all over the place like a landed fish.
I’ve been waiting for that hairpin to show up, and I literally wanted to shove Wol so she would drop her parcel (in hopes that the pin would roll out and H would see). Plot-wise, I’m curious what significance it will have. Of course it proves who she really is, but who will it prove it to? H, or herself? Or would others (such as M and B) also recognize it? Whether or not H sees it, I was delighted by how doggedly he is investigating YW’s “death” and feel confident that he’ll figure everything out. When Wol asked him to stop asking questions, I was was initially worried that he would give up and sink back into depression. Instead he is showing more determination than ever, and continues to impress me with his quick-wit and manipulation of the scholars and ministers. I’m a big fan of the H/HS/Woon team, and hope we get to see a lot more of them working together.
That episode left me perfectly satiated, like I ate a good meal without over-eating. This drama is slowly and steadily getting better and better, which makes me hopeful that we won’t see it dragging before its conclusion, like so many other dramas seem to do. Instead of throwing everything at us in the beginning, it’s taking its time, and stringing us along at just the perfect pace to have us hooked. It’s no wonder that the ratings are so high, and I bet they’ll stay strong.