Drama Recaps
Chuno: Episode 12
by | March 18, 2010 | 57 Comments

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Last episode we see that at long last, Song Tae-Ha’s men have been reunited at the Sleeping Buddha statue at Un-Joo Temple. They greet the Crown Prince Seok-Kyeon with reverence and a determination to see this conspiracy through to the end. All of these men of Song Tae-Ha have given up their lives to this cause. And Un-Nyun is awed by their unwavering commitment in the face of slavery and dishonor – maybe there is more to life than running away from slavery. Meanwhile, Dae-Gil, Choi and Wang-Son are less than a few miles away, maybe 10 minutes. Could this be the episode of meeting, or will PD Kwak yank our chains for another episode?

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But we start this recap at the Royal Pavilion in Han-Yang, where the Qing Emissary Yong has arrived with the Qing Delegation.

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King Injo is worried at what this particular Emissary wants from him. It was just a few years ago that Joseon was beaten by the Qing Empire and King Injo himself was forced to bow three times before the Qing Emperor and by proximity, before Emissary Yong.

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King Injo asks his number two man, the Left State Minister Lee Gyeong Shik, about the happenings in Jeju Island, where the last surviving son of the murdered Crown Prince So-Hyeon was supposed to be killed. Minister Lee tells the King that everything is going according to plan, and this relaxes the King. With this, we now know for sure that the King has been behind the murder of his own son.

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It looks like it was King Injo’s defeat at the hands of the Qing Empire that made the Crown Prince So-Hyeon go to Qing in the first place as a hostage. And it was this defeat that made the Crown Prince come back to Joseon as a different person, one with strange ideas and even stranger plans, plans that made King Injo have to murder his own son and kill off that son’s lineage.

(Note: you can see on the front part of the teal gown that the Left State Minister is wearing, a design of a double crane. This Joseon-era design is called a hyungbae (형배), or badge. All high ranking government officials wore similar badges. A badge with double white cranes were for civil ranks one through three, while a badge with a single white crane were for civil ranks four through nine. Military officers wore similar badges, but instead of cranes, they had a combo-animal called a ho-pyo (호표, ho for tiger and pyo for leopard).

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And back to Un-Joo Temple, where Dae-Gil has finally arrived, literally running straight up a mountain to get there. He finds nothing, as Tae-Ha and crew have already made it to the Temple proper, where they plan on obliterating their tracks. Wang-Son calls out for Dae-Gil and Choi, as he has found tracks that lead to the Temple.

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And at the Temple, Un-Nyun prays inside the Sanctum, bowing multiple times before the Buddhist idol. Despite being born a slave, Un-Nyun seems to have been schooled well in ritual activity, and performs rites of cleansing. Tae-Ha has sent his men ahead, and joins Un-Nyun in the Sanctum.

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Un-Nyun: I prayed for success and peace to follow you Nauri.
Tae-Ha: The time to leave is now.
Un-Nyun (looking at Tae-Ha): Alright.
Tae-Ha (returning her gaze): Why aren’t you asking where we are heading?
Un-Nyun: Where we end up going, is not important. Who you go with, is what is important.

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Well, it was only time before the vapid charms of Song Tae-Ha are finally working on Un-Nyun. Either that, or Un-Nyun has resigned herself to the fact that her love has been dead for 10 years, and she better start working it if she wants to have a nice home and a family. It was a long time Joseon statistic that women slaves over the age of 20 who escape and pretend to be yang-ban noble women have a better chance of being killed by a terrorist than they do in getting married. Un-Nyun undoubtedly knows this, and is trying to make the best out of her life.

Finally, Dae-Gil and crew reach the Temple, passing by a group of slaves carrying a carriage, which was used by yang-ban women to travel long distances without getting covered in dust and being hit by sun or rain. They ambush a sturdy little monk, who schools Dae-Gil on proper titles when speaking with a monk.

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Dae-Gil shows a picture of Tae-Ha, and the little monk relates that they were there and left a little before. Dae-Gil shows a picture of Un-Nyun, and the little monk says that he views women as rocks and does not see them. Dae-Gil then asks if the little monk has seen a rock shaped like Un-Nyun, and the little monk nods.

Dae-Gil and company rush off and fall for the first and second of Tae-Ha’s tricks with false horse tracks and the empty carriage. Dae-Gil realizes that they have been tricked, and deign not to chase ghosts into the darkness. They head to a local inn to discuss their next move.

Meanwhile, Left State Minister Lee means Qing Emissary Yong for a repast and to discuss the importation of water buffalo horn, the primary element in the fabled Joseon military bow. Additionally, Emissary Yong mentions the fact that Prince So-Hyeon was like a son to him, and that So-Hyeon’s children would be no different that Yong’s own children. And for that relationship, Emissary Yong wants to take So-Hyeon’s last son, Prince Seok-Kyeon, and raise him as his own child in Qing.

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Minister Lee would have been a fine poker player as he makes no reaction at all to this development, and later wonders how Emissary Yong will take to the news that Prince Seok-Kyeon is dead like his brothers and his dad.

But, poor Minister Lee, he doesn’t know that at that very moment, General Song Tae-Ha has gathered up his men and have safely transported the child Prince Seok-Kyeon to their temporary headquarters, a compound where scholars generally meet to discuss politics and governance. This is where they meet up with the yang-ban co-conspirators.

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This part requires a bit of explanation. In any conspiracy to take down a government, there will be a need for both military and civilian authority. The military authority lies in the hands of the professional soldiers, their commander(s) like General Song Tae-Ha, and the nobles with estates that are large enough to conscript scores or even hundreds of men. The civilian authority would be comprised of the scholar-noble, who passed rigorous examinations showcasing their knowledge of language, history, science and philosophy. In this case, Scholar Jo here is the head of the civilian authority and Song Tae-Ha is the head of the military authority. Without both of these men, the conspiracy would not be successful as the military authority provides the muscle and the civilian authority provides the justification.

Not more than few miles away at a local inn, Choi and Dae-Gil converse in the night air – not about rulers and men, but about affairs of the heart.

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Choi: If you find Un-Nyun, what will you do?
Dae-Gil: What would I do indeed…. I would do as the law commands.
Choi (looking at Tae-Ha): Do you think that she and Song Tae-Ha really got married?
Dae-Gil : How can I believe that guy’s words? They would say anything to survive?
Choi: And what if she is married and living happily. What would you do then?

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It is heavy foreshadowing here, and Dae-Gil pauses for a bit, holding up a throwing knife not unlike the one he hit Un-Nyun with in the back, albeit by accident.

Dae-Gil: She cannot be allowed to live happily…. Not when I am living like this. Not with… me ending up living like I have been living. She cannot be allowed to live happily.
Choi: Whatever the result, you should set your mind to be still… what is important to us, is the 500 nyang that would get for Song Tae-Ha.

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Choi then tells Dae-Gil that they are family and that if Dae-Gil needs to lean on someone, he can lean on him and Wang-Son. But while Dae-Gil snorts at that, Choi knows that Dae-Gil feels the same way. They are family.

Unlike Dae-Gil and his warm and fuzzies with his adopted family, a far different feeling pervades Commander Hwang, aka Hwang Chul-Woong, aka the Slayer. He has finally made it back to Hanyang, but barely. His wounds from his battles in Jeju Island, where he had his ass beaten down by his nemesis Song Tae-Ha, have not healed properly and Commander Hwang is on his last legs. He stands outside his poor mother’s home, but cannot bear to greet her – not like this.

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Winter must be cold for those with no warm memories, and the blackened heart of Commander Hwang is such that he cannot even enter into his mother’s home to receive care. He is but an animal now, a killer animal, and he cannot let his mother see him like this. Commander Hwang is not only publicly disgraced (and who can only be cleared and reinstated by his evil father-in-law, Left State Minister Lee), but he has no friends, nobody he can trust. He collapses from blood loss and exhaustion… luckily in front of Magistrate Oh, who recognizes Hwang as the son-in-law of Minister Lee. Magistrate Oh recognizes a windfall when he sees one, and piggy-backs Hwang back to Minister Lee’s home.

Minister Lee is beside himself with frustration at seeing Hwang like this, realizing something must have gone horribly awry in Jeju Island. Minister Lee’s daughter, though, cares not at all for the secret mission and cares only for what little she can to comfort and tend to her husband.

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Morning brings a refreshed Commander Hwang, all better and ready to go out do more killing. Minister Lee is not happy at the situation though, and tells Hwang that if he fails again, for him not to come back, because not even a Commander Hwang corpse would find a resting spot in this household. A bit harsh, but Hwang is in no position to argue the merits of his demise.

Far away, the object of Minister Lee’s consternation is finally being treated with the adulation and respect that a Crown Prince deserves. Prince Seok-Kyeon is, after all, the “Rightful Successor to the Throne.” I put the title in quotes, because really when it comes to ruling and power, might makes right, and might really is arbitrary. Prince Seok-Kyeon might be the last surviving son of the late Crown Prince, but since the King has already declared Prince Seok-Kyeon’s uncle, Prince Bong-Rim, to be Injo’s heir, this adulation borders on treason.

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Still, Prince Seok-Kyeon doesn’t seem to mind. I don’t have an opinion on who should be the Crown Prince, but I do have an opinion on the boy. He is SO CUTE! If power and might are arbitrary, then I vote that the Royal Successor should be the one who is the cutest. And that’s why I would get behind Prince Seok-Kyeon. With this ceremonial declaration of allegiance, we now see the organization of the conspirators and their shadow-government. Mimicking a royal court, we have a mini version on display: on the right side of the Prince, you have the military, led by General Song Tae-Ha. And the civilian authority, led by yang-ban extraordinaire Scholar Jo, is on the Prince’s left side.

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Just a few miles away, Dae-Gil and company are planning their heuristic search algorithm. Rather than fruitlessly wasting time and energy trying to search for people who don’t want to be found and are good at hiding their tracks, Dae-Gil cleverly orders his guys to search for traces of impact of a large number of men suddenly coming together and living. This is reminiscent of the movie Under Siege 2: Dark Territory, where evil mastermind Travis Dane figures out that he can track and destroy the otherwise invisible F-117 stealth fighters by tracking the air turbulence created around the airplanes.

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Meanwhile, things are settling down for Un-Nyun, who is beginning to see life after Dae-Gil as not being a terribly bad thing. She has got her very own Song Tae-Ha wrapped around her finger like a rubber band, and everybody thinks she’s a noblewoman and not a slave. Life is good. Un-Nyun rolls up her sleeve and volunteers to feed Tae-Ha and his men, another signal that Un-Nyun has moved on. And why not? Dae-Gil has been dead for 10 years – how long must she mourn? And why spend the rest of your life moping?

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But good feelings aren’t in abundance in this episode. Hwang Chul-Woong is getting ready to take off again. He’s a busy man – he’s got a ton of old men, women and children to threaten, innocents to kill, righteous people to torture. It’s going to be a busy few days for him, and he doesn’t have the time to deal with his wife. But then again, even so, Hwang doesn’t have to be a jerk. Looking straight at her, Hwang calmly states that the biggest mistake that he ever made in his whole life was marrying her.

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Hwang Chul-Woong: Listen well to my words. I will reveal this for all to see, when I stomp on your father and stand over and on top of him.

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Wow, if I were there, I would reply, “actually, the biggest mistake that you ever made was in rejecting this woman’s love, the one person other than your mom who loves you unconditionally, you virtue-less and soul-less man.” Still, we can interpret this in two ways. First, Hwang could be saying the biggest mistake of his life was to marry her because due to her palsy. Or, Hwang could be saying that he regrets marrying her because it has meant that he has to obey an equally soul-less man, Left State Minister Lee. I have a feeling that what Hwang regrets most is that he has become a person that can no longer see his mother because of how evil he has become. If there is a person Chul-Woong hates more than himself, it would be Minister Lee.

Following in his own search path apart from his company, Dae-Gil has his own bright idea and heads to the owner of the carriage that was left in Un Joo Temple. He wants to know who borrowed the carriage from the owner. The owner declines to acquiesce to Dae-Gil’s request, and Dae-Gil is forced to fight and kill the owner’s guards. The owner then spills the beans. The borrower was this scholar guy, who is staying up in a seo-won (meeting hall for scholars) nearby. With that information, Dae-Gil has at long last finally found his target location!

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And at that target location, Scholar Jo is meeting with all of the top advisers. Against Song Tae-Ha’s better judgment, Scholar Jo wants to lead a revolution against the King and his son Prince Bong-Rim, to install Prince Seok-Kyeon as the new King. Song Tae-Ha is man who has led his whole life with the principle to defend Joseon against all enemies, but never to spill Joseon blood if he can help it. And now Scholar Jo, this armchair warrior, wants Song Tae-Ha to lead an army against his own people.

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Not only that, but Scholar Jo wants Tae-Ha to drop Un-Nyun like a bad habit, so that Tae-Ha would be focused on the duties at hand. It is hard enough to lead a revolution, but impossible to do so when half your thoughts revolve around cuddling your new wife. That touches a sore spot, and Tae-Ha abruptly gets up.

Believing that marriage to Un-Nyun will calm Scholar Jo’s fears that Un-Nyun is a security risk, and also to sate his growing need to be with this woman, Tae-Ha goes to see Un-Nyun and proposes that they marry. Un-Nyun is not pleased with the least romantic proposal in the history of marriage, but after Tae-Ha tries again, and this time with feeling.

Un-Nyun begins to sense that she will finally be creating a new life for her and happily agrees. If her earlier dreams of life with Dae-Gil, back when she was a slave, were just childish fantasy, then these dreams must seem so real to her. She is finally getting what would be like winning the lottery for just about any woman in Joseon – a chance to being a happily-married noblewoman married to a General yang-ban who is about as milque-toast as they come. Don’t forget to take out the trash, Tae-Ha.

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but of course, all of this is based on her assumption that Dae-Gil is dead. But you know what they say about making assumptions. Actually, I’ll quote Travis Dane, again from that very excellent movie, Under Siege 2: Dark Territory, when he says, “Assumption is the mother of all screw-ups!”

Sure enough, Dae-Gil is not dead. He is making a mad dash for the seo-won, as Un-Nyun readies herself for marriage. The look on Un-Nyun’s face betray both joy and sorrow, as apparently she still has not let go of the past even as she takes hold of another man’s hand.

As much as I have mixed feelings here, and as much as Un-Nyun also seems to have mixed feelings about all of this, what else can she do? She has got nothing and being married to a Song Tae-Ha and living in silken han-boks certainly beats running around dressed a lavender robed man trying not to get attacked by unscrupulous men. It may even be that she is starting to love Tae-Ha, for his gentleness, his firm convictions and integrity, his skillful martial arts. Is it possible for lightning to strike this fated young woman twice?

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Sprinting from the carriage owner’s house, Dae-Gil arrives at the seo-won – but is he in time? Dae-Gil jumps over the seo-won compound’s walls and sneaks around to the living quarters area, searching for Tae-Ha and Un-Nyun. Dae-Gil sees Tae-Ha first and takes out his knife, but then a beaming Un-Nyun appears. It looks like they really are a happy couple…

The words spoken earlier by Dae-Gil to Choi echo now.

Dae-Gil: She cannot be allowed to live happily…. Not when I am living like this. Not with… me ending up living like I have been living. She cannot be allowed to live happily.

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Would Dae-gil really have the heart let them go? The look on Dae-Gil’s face says… no.

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Comments:

It is noteworthy that Dae-Gil arrives at Un-Nyun’s wedding ceremony, in time to stop it if he so chooses. Now, Dae-Gil has a choice of options, and he will be the one who is responsible for the chain of events to follow. This really has been Dae-Gil’s story, and up until now for half this series – 12 full episodes, he has chased Tae-Ha and Un-Nyun around Joseon. What lies ahead for the next 12 episodes is the result of whatever choice Dae-Gil makes here. But given the amount of time that the story lines have really focused on Dae-Gil and his search for Un-Nyun, you have to wonder whether there will be an equal time spent with Un-Nyun, in reciprocation or in askew of Dae-Gil’s feelings and heart.

My one comment with respect to this episode is “finally!” I am not particularly thrilled with the pace of this drama, and had this turning point in the series appeared in Episode 8 or 9, I don’t think we would have lost anything. But, big budget sageuks need a ton of money to be produced and I suppose advertisement revenue is a reason why this series is 24 episodes rather than 18 or 20. I only wonder how much better this drama could be so far, if all of this chasing hadn’t been so drawn out.

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57 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. shahab

    thank you very much

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  2. Biscuit

    Thanks for another great recap :)

    All I have to say this time is that I cried was the scene with Commander Hwang and his wife. He’s a lonely guy who can’t even approach his mother… and yet the only person who honestly tries to tend to him is his wife who has never shown great affection for.

    And yes, I’m happy that Dae-Gil FINALLY meets Un-Nyun. 12 episodes is pretty long… even a short glimpse in the last few episodes would have been fine earlier.. even if he couldn’t get to her. Hooray for Un-Nyun moving on and Dae Gil realizing that a woman ain’t gonna wait for a guy whose supposedly dead for 10 years!

    What if they never meet again? Does she have to grow old and be single til her death? So, so, so mean.

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  3. Bunde

    That Un-Nyun… she should become a Buddhist nun instead of marrying Tae Ha. Shave her hair and get rid of the manicure paint. Only then will the netizens forgive her.

    It’s not too late!

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  4. ockoala

    This is hands down one of the funniest recaps you’ve ever written, samsooki.

    Gems include:

    1. UN more likely to get killed by a terrorist – does Joseon stats have anything on getting struck by lightning twice?

    2. A rock named UN – so, Choco goes both ways?

    3. milquetoast TH – even when TH is kicking ass, he looks halfway bored and roboticized, kinda like a Joseon Robocop. He definitely would take out the trash, change diapers, burp the baby, cook dinner, iron the silken hanbok, brush wifey’s hair 100 strokes, and generally all this before hs sets out to chop firewood by the bushel and work out his mad mad Big Sword Skillz.

    Un knows she can do no better than TH, so as bereft as she was for losing Choco and letting go of a dead man’s memory, she’s making the right choice, and all we can do is shake our fist at fate. Poor DG!

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  5. mimi

    I second that @ 3!

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  6. Basha

    thank u so much for the recaps

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  7. samsooki

    milquetoast TH – He definitely would take out the trash, change diapers, burp the baby, cook dinner, iron the silken hanbok, brush wifey’s hair 100 strokes, and generally all this before hs sets out to chop firewood by the bushel and work out his mad mad Big Sword Skillz.

    Hehe! I shoulda added the part about 100 brush strokes of wifey’s hair.

    Still, let me be fair. There’s nothing wrong with Tae-Ha as a match for Un-Nyun, alright? He is a fine catch – a decent human being and even his hair has volume and bounce without shampoo, conditioner (HEY…….. where’s the criticism of Tae-Ha’s well-groomed and shiny mane despite being on the run for like a MONTH? His hair should be matted down, greasy, disgusting, smelly and full of sea salt and dust! If LDH gets criticism for her polished finger nails, then how come nobody has said squat about Tae-Ha and the fact that his hair stays volumized with plenty of bounce and body despite his arduous road trip around Joseon???).

    Still, there are a ton of Tae-Ha supporters out there, and so I will add this – If the character of Un-Nyun starts to show signs that her heart is with TH and that she has moved beyond DG, then I will recap that as so. So, to the TH fan club and TH-HW shippers out there, have no fear that I will put on my Dae-Gil blinders and fail to see a burgeoning love story in the making between TH and UN. If that happens (and this is a big if, imo), I will note it for sure.

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  8. Jennifer

    LOL okay we get it. You’re a big DG/UN fan. UN is just manipulating and using TH because she believes DG is dead. Although hey, maybe one day she can force herself to feel something for him if she closes her eyes and imagines he’s DG!

    Kidding, kidding. But really, nothing in this story has suggested that this is the case. Yes UN still loves DG and probably always will but that has nothing to do with what she feels for TH. One doesn’t negate the other. The very idea that the woman who ran away to escape a marriage of convenience would marry someone else…for convenience doesn’t really fit for me.

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  9. samsooki

    @8, Jennifer -

    Actually, I’m not a UN-DG shipper, not really. I recognize that the OTP (one true pairing) has been set up for this series to be UN-DG, but if it came down to brass tacks, I would probably lend my vote for DG and SH.

    UN as a character… well, at this point, we are 1/2 way through the drama series and it just seems like the UN character is just not very well written or thought-out. For 10 years, she has moped over the death of DG, I get it. But then an arranged marriage to a nobleman she doesn’t know triggers an escape reflex reaction, which leads her to getting married to a guy… she barely knows. Is it possible, yes, but is it well-written, not really.

    Early on, I defended UN’s passive character because it was early and she has all the room in the world to grow, but, halfway through now, she still hasn’t shown much personality. I don’t know why she does what she does, she has nobody to talk to, so there is no dialogue that can explain her thinking, and so she vacillates between being sad for DG’s death, being scared at almost killed or captured, or being happy that she’s with TH.

    It’s not LDH’s fault – I just don’t know why she does or doesn’t do anything, I don’t know what her thinking is. In fact, that goes for TH too. His character is also poorly written.

    It makes zero sense that TH would ask UN to marry him, especially at this juncture. If TH is everything that his character makes him out to be, the TH would not marry willy-nilly some girl who he met on the road a few weeks before, when he is part of a conspiracy that took years, the unbelievable sacrifice of his own men, and many lives to put together. It is waaaay too much of a stretch that TH would “fall in love” with the perpetually in danger UN, all the while focused on keeping Prince Seok-Kyeon alive and preparing for a revolution.

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  10. 10 ockoala

    @ samsooki

    “There’s nothing wrong with Tae-Ha as a match for Un-Nyun,”

    Correctomundo! Like I said, UN marrying TH is exactly the right choice for her to make. If she didn’t say yes to the boringest marriage proposal in Joseon history, I would suggest she get checked out by both Jumos and a shrink.

    However, doing the right thing isn’t necessarily the best thing, the most exciting thing, or even the thing your heart desires the most.

    If I played a game of “What Does UN Want The Most In Life” – the answer is for DG to be alive and to be together with her. This is obviously, in her mind, never going to happen. So let’s put this utmost desire into fantasyland in her mind, and make what is the best thing for her future happiness, marrying a great guy who adores her and has bouncy hair and rock hard abs and a soft voice. TH would never yell at UN, he would say “ai” and then make her comfortable.

    @ Jennifer

    I kinda have to agree and disagree with your assertion that UN’s love for DG does not negate her feelings for TH. If DG is in fact dead, then UN’s love for DG becomes a memory, a part of her past, and totally does not negate or interfere with any love she may develop for TH.

    But we know DG is alive, and about to bounce right back into UN’s stratosphere. Love for two alive guys does in fact create problems, lots and lots of it. So unless UN is a math genius and can compartmentalize her feelings – UN loves DG 30 percent and TH 70 percent, etc. – UN is in for a world of heartache. She loves both guys, and they both love her. She’s either the luckiest girl on earth or the unluckiest. I grant you that UN did not marry TH for convenience but in fact does have feelings for him, she clearly hasn’t completely moved on from DG yet even after kissing TH and agreeing to marry him. What to do, what to do?

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  11. 11 Dahee Fanel

    Samsooki, I don’t see what’s so unbelievable about Tae-ha and Un-nyun getting together. They’re two lonely, attractive people who’ve been on the run together for weeks, have spent lots of alone time together, and there’s clearly a sexual attraction there. When you go through so much danger and extreme circumstances with a person, you form a certain attachment to them. I’m not at all surprised they’ve decided to get married. Hell, some people get married after knowing each other for a few hours, after all. Even Tae-ha is human (even if he often does act like a log).

    Great recap, btw. I think it may be one of your best yet. :)

    @ockoala:

    “I grant you that UN did not marry TH for convenience but in fact does have feelings for him, she clearly hasn’t completely moved on from DG yet even after kissing TH and agreeing to marry him. What to do, what to do?”

    Agreed 100%. What to do? Poor UN. I would hate to be in her shoes.

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  12. 12 pat

    Samsooki! My TH isn’t THAT vapid…..but you’re correct , she better start working it, times a’wastin.

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  13. 13 firewife

    @ 11 Dahee Fanel I’m in complete agreement with you. The fact that UN refused TH’s proposal of a marriage of necessity, but then accepts him after he confesses his feelings, tells me that she also has some feelings for him. If a marriage of convenience is all she wanted she could have just accepted the first proposal. A woman doesn’t hold out for a confession if there’s zero reciprocity.

    Did DG really realize that the wedding hadn’t taken place yet, but was about to? I didn’t get that when I watched this episode. I’ll have to rewatch the scene with that in mind. It does put a different spin on things if he is making a choice to stop it or not.

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  14. 14 song4u2

    I think UN/HW should do this….love the one your with!

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  15. 15 song4u2

    @13
    He’s another one assuming something.

    I think some of HW sadness may be due to not being completely honest with TH.

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  16. 16 meixin

    STH is a good person but my heart aches for LDG… :(

    i’m absolutely in LOVE with chuno! i want to get the DVD set when it comes out… thanks for the recap!

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  17. 17 ellen

    Thank you for the enjoyable recap. I’ve been waiting…at last…thanks again.

    The young monk seeing women as rocks (to handle celibacy?), DG asking him if he saw a rock that looks like UN is quite humorous. Funny. UN look alike rock, DG choco rock rocks me to think DG & UN in the end? I dont mind TH.UN as long as they are both happy. TH wants to keep her for good by marrying her. UN feels safe & now admires TH. But I can imagine how shock she would be when she finally sees DG in the flesh! Poor DG. His heart will be broken to pieces, how will he handle the pain!

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  18. 18 sophie

    Jesus Christ. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a cuter Korean baby than in that first pic

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  19. 19 langdon813

    This:

    “This is reminiscent of the movie Under Siege 2: Dark Territory, where evil mastermind Travis Dane figures out that he can track and destroy the otherwise invisible F-117 stealth fighters by tracking the air turbulence created around the airplanes.”

    Is. Brilliant. :-D

    OMG., when Hwang Chul-woong delivered that horrible comment to his wife, he truly sealed his fate for me (not that he hasn’t already committed plenty heinous acts, but that was the straw). HE MUST DIE.

    And I am proudly sailing on the USS Dae-gil / Un-nyun…but even if I weren’t, I do not see any sexual tension between Un-nyun and Tae-ha. None at all. I don’t blame her a bit for marrying him, he’s strong, brave, not ugly at all…and nice. And the love of her life is presumed dead…so she should go for it. But the look on Dae-gil’s face at the end suggests that the sh*t is about to hit the fan in a mighty big way.

    Love the song! :-D

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  20. 20 Amg1

    @Samsooki, Thank you for your hard work if it was not for you guys hard work I would have left Chuno a long time ago.
    The saddest character in the CHUNO narrative belongs to Un-Nyun.

    Tae-Ha is a man with a mission, that happens to have fallen in love with the Noble Lady that he has been taking care of for the past weeks, in his mind Tae-Ha has fallen in love with a Glamorize version of Un-Nyun which is a lie for all intended purposes, he does not know better so for all he knows he has done well for a battle harden soldier.

    Dae-Gil’s version is base upon the past, a young girl that happen to be his fathers servant, being one of the reason that he could not dispose of her at will, he has been chasing this idyllic image of the Virginal idea of who she was ten years ago, a wronged lover by fate and circumstances but he knows that she is alive so all that he has accomplish up till this very moment whether be good or bad has been in the pursue of this misconceive ideal.

    Un-Nyun on the other hand is caught in a world where circumstances dictate your very existence, she was born a slave, all she knew up till the point that she burn that tattoo from her skin was the fact that her very life belong not to herself but to her master, we do not know whether she is a virgin in the sexual sense since we know she is beautiful, and there is no doubt that the master will be the first one in taking care of that obstacle, we do not know whether her relationship with Dae-Gil was of a sexual nature or not, having said all that we find Un-Nyun in a place where she is trying to finally move from a place of constant sorrow to allowing herself to like some one other than her dead lover even for the possibility of finding true love again. But the cruel reality is that she will marry another man and consummate the marriage in the bridal bed, only to eventually find out the her lover still alive, and if that is not one of the cruelest thing that fate can give as your destiny, the little sorrow that Dae-Gil and Tae-Ha
    have experience are but child’s play in comparison to the tragedy that has befallen to our unlucky heroine.

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  21. 21 ellen

    The first marriage that UN ran away from was her brother’s arrangement with that oldish looking noble.

    She spent sometime with TH 24/7 & she got to see close & personal & know what he is like. They did have some communication about their past. She has observed him quietly & start to trust him. He’s certainly better looking than the first man her brother chose for her. When she handled/caressed TH’s sword while waiting for him to come back. That moment seemed to indicate her feelings for him. Won’t caressing someones property means liking the owner of it? Not to mention the symbol of a sword. heheh TH has all the qualities a woman would want for a husband. If UN has got loving feeling when he’s near TH then, yes he is the man. She made sure about TH feelings for her before accepting his 2nd proposal. Wait…DG is yet to appear in the flesh in front of her…then what next…. Married to TH…DG alive…oh t ke…what to do, what to do…!!

    I would prefer to a few episodes before the end with UN.DG happy together if they are still meant for each other. Its quite a complicated love triangle when she already married to TH.

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  22. 22 ella

    AWESOME RECAP. I don’t usually giggle and enjoy sageuk drama recaps, but this is just really good. I don’t even watch Chuno, but now I kind of want to see it because of your recaps.

    Thank you :)

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  23. 23 firewife

    @ 19 langdon813

    All along I’ve been holding on to a small nugget of compassion for HCW, he just seemed so alone and kind of lost,…until he made that comment to his wife. Then I dropped it like a rock! (Poor choco..may he RIP) If the man does not die a horrible death there is simply no justice in Kdrama land!

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  24. 24 bbm

    excellent recap samsooki…
    as cute as the baby prince, i actually love baby nami more, because i thought the baby prince is like the baby version of STH, he never cries, never make a fuss, he just put on a cutesy smile and a serious expression every once in a while…
    but hey, he have my vote for the cutest royal successor :P

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  25. 25 Moon

    i don’t think you should write Samsooki. You’re bullshit

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  26. 26 firewife

    I just wanted to say one more thing about the love triangle. I do think it’s possible to be in love with 2 people at the same time…but not to REMAIN in love with 2 people at the same time. At some point you have to make a decision.
    For me, what makes this love triangle so compelling is that UN/HW obviously still loves DG, but is also developing feelings for TH. So in the end, who will she choose? Or will fate choose for her? I don’t know, but I’m sucked into it, which is why I’m still watching!
    I know how I want it to end, so if the writer disappoints me, I’ll just imagine the ending I want and pretend that’s how it happened!

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  27. 27 daisytwenties

    I’m a little confused.
    So is Emissary Yong a “Good Guy?”

    GAH.

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  28. 28 Annie

    the prince is so cuteeeeee

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  29. 29 langdon813

    @25 Moon

    Can you do better? If you think Samsooki’s writing is bullshit, let’s see your effort. Prove your point. I’m breathless with anticipation.

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  30. 30 mimi

    All Un-Nyun does is hold the toddler prince. She holds him in the morning, she holds him in the noontime, and when the sun goes down. She holds him; that’s her job. And when she speaks, her lines don’t reveal much about her character.

    I was looking forward to this drama before it aired w/ all the great photos that were released. But they really messed up with the triangle love story idea and I think they’re frustrating more viewers than they are garnering their praises for the writing.
    I’d to say more but b/c it has to do w/ the next episodes, I’ll hold my tongue.

    …@25 Is that a joke or something? B/c your comment is really rude.

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  31. 31 Ladymoonstone143

    Thanks for the recaps…I am always anticipating them because I know I miss some of the important stuff.

    This is actually one of the Korean dramas that I am confuse who I want the heroine to end up with…I love both STH and DG…so hopefully whoever LDH ends with….should be justifiable…lol

    Thanks again….

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  32. 32 ockoala

    @ 25 Moon

    I’m confused? Perhaps you can elaborate on your accusation that samsooki is bullshit?

    Is samsooki himself bullshit – i.e. the fecal matter coming from a male cow. Or is his writing bullshit – i.e. you don’t agree with the substance of what he wrote. Or is it neither, but in fact you are alleging that samsooki is “full of” bullshit – i.e. he is full of crap.

    See, all three mean completely different things. And if you are incapable of lobbying an insult with clarity so that readers can understand what it is you find offensive about samsooki (his writing, himself, or his thoughts), then you need to learn how to write first before telling samsooki you think he should stop writing. How can you insult someone properly if you are incapable of forming the correct insult.

    Or better yet, don’t insult samsooki at all, just don’t read his recap. See, that was an easy solution for you, and I didn’t even resort to insulting you in the process but provided constructive criticism. samsooki is always open to constructive criticism, I hope you are, too.

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  33. 33 mimmay

    I have to say I really don’t care for the romances. I was really excited about this drama in the beginning. The character of DG seemed so dynamic and interesting that I was sure there were more reasons for him to obsessively search for UN other than simply because of love. After all, didn’t his parents die because of her? But I’m beginning to think I care more about DG’s parents’ death more than he does, lol. DG’s character just seems pathetic now. Hopefully, the story will pick up again after the DG-UN meeting (please, please, please don’t keep dragging this on).

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  34. 34 Norme

    Annyeong,

    Thanks so much Samsooki for the great recap..

    Poor DG, …..seriously look at his expression…so sad…..

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  35. 35 onemorepls

    That is the cutest first picture!!! Miss my boys when they were that young.

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  36. 36 Sere

    here comes the flamers again. People, if you don’t want to read a recap, do not read it. Likewise, if you don’t like a particular recapper, do not read his/her posts. WHY do you have to insult?

    @Samsooki
    please ignore the haters, ok? Plenty of people like what and how you write. Me? I don’t always agree with you, but I LOVE reading your entries and I like talking to you, even if sometimes we argue. Actually, I like it better when we disagree: you make me think and I thank you for that.

    Now, as for Chuno, oh I didn’t know about the badge thingy. Thanks for sharing that info, which is very interesting.

    I don’t like the pace of the drama, either. Come to think of it, I… well, not lost interest in it, but my squee was wavering from ep 14-16, but after ep 17 I’m feeling it again. It could have had a tighter pace and plot with fewer eps, but ah well, I’m gonna sit back and enjoy the ride.

    Re: Chul-Woong. When I saw that hateful scene, I thought he meant what you suggested, Samsooki. His marriage bound him to Minister Lee and that’s what I think he hates the most (her palsy certainly doesn’t help, but I think he hates Minister Lee more). Cos with that one choice (and I still think he didn’t have much of a choice), Chul-Woong pretty much stopped being a person and became the ruthless killer he is now. Up until his marriage and despite the hateful things he had done -and he was a backstabbing awful person- he was still “redeemable”. After his wedding? Nope.

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  37. 37 Sere

    …and I forgot. I’m still not sure who the OTP is supposed to be in this. This is the first kdrama I watch that has me sooo confused about pairings. I mean, I know who I like and who I ship, but that has nothing to do with understanding who the intended OTP is.

    Still, I don’t understand ship-wars. One likes what one likes. No need to bash other pairings or characters and ruin the fun for all the other viewers, right? Can’t we all play nice and keep shipping whoever we want to w/t insulting one another?

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  38. 38 Rachel

    Thanks for the recap. It’s really helpful to get the political/ historical background.

    I’m in the DG camp. Yes, he’s an asshole at times, and if I were in her shoes, I would probably go for STH. But STH is too much of a boy scout for me. I like how complex DG is.

    I’m curious to see what will happen. I have yet to see a Kdrama where the woman ends up with the nice guy.

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  39. 39 dod

    If this is a love triangle…someone or two or all three..may have to die..or else it is Love that will meet its death..be brave folks

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  40. 40 estlxlan

    finally … the show is worth watching now

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  41. 41 Larissa

    “It was a long time Joseon statistic that women slaves over the age of 20 who escape and pretend to be yang-ban noble women have a better chance of being killed by a terrorist than they do in getting married.”

    Almost fell off my chair, I was laughing so hard… That would’ve been embarrasing as I’m at work at the moment (don’t tell anyone). Have to hold in my giggles… Can’t. Do. It…

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  42. 42 michi

    the baby is too cute! :D

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  43. 43 shahi

    I love DG….I hope she ends up with DG

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  44. 44 Daniel Chen

    Hi samsooki, meet you again in epi 15. Thanks for the music.
    I have a lot to say but will stick to 15 and hope you don’t mind if I spill a little out of the boundary !. First do you notice the narration was spoken by Hwang chul woong, so he hasn’t dig his own grave yet or coming soon! or just “lending” his clear and powerful voice for the narration.
    As for Un Nyun and Song tae ha, both did not tell the truth about their past while they were on the run untill they got married. Song tae ha’s second proposal(first proposal was very dry) – he will cherish her for the rest of her life, (any women hear those words is like music to their ears) in my view it was his rash decision although STH has fallen in love – say one month on the run while she still hold her heart and CHOKO for ten years but then decided to leave the past and look forward to the future without knowing that dae gil is still alive. STH is also trying to solve one big burden he has committed – to care for Wangson mama as she is a capable woman to “extend” her hand in carryin, cuddling and feeding the baby, and also now reading stories to him!. They have to lie quite often (even to jjakgwi) for the prince safety.
    I think when dae gil saw Un nyun holding hands and smiling and the toddler appeared he thought that was STH’s son (remember at the library he and choi “dig ” about his past). I don’t think he knows that is wngson mama till the tortured scene.

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  45. 45 bones

    Personally, i think that while UN still loves Dae gil, her love for him is just a thing of the past, like a fond memory or something and that she actually loves TH now. But she just can’t help but feel guilty towards Dae gil for loving and marrying another man.

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  46. 46 miss

    thanks for the recaps…I love this drama. its like crack to me. lol.
    for some reason, i thought STH was already married and his wife was killed. i love the way he looks at her UN, its so romantic.

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  47. 47 asianromance

    I’m not watching this drama, but I’m loving your recaps! The little prince is so cute! I wish I have a toddler that I can dress like that! And he looks so calm and happy with all this turmoil around him. Dae-gil is such a tragic character, that I can’t root for UN and TH unless they give DG SOME happiness.

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  48. 48 Acalle

    The little prince, he is absolutely ADORABLE. He has grown so much since prince Hodong in Kingdom of the Wind.

    http://www.jazzholic.com/2009/01/08/prince-hodong/

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  49. 49 orbiter

    if i could have kids that looked like that, I’d have two dozen.

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  50. 50 little pop

    After watching all these episodes of Chuno, I am impress with Lee Da Hae’s acting. She has grown as an actress, and this role shows her maturity. She no longer just smiling and looking silly like in “My Girl” and “Hello Miss”. Actually, I am very impress with all three leading actors. Now – the writing and character developments – let’s hope that will get better

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