Smiling Kyu has returned bright eyed and bushy tailed this episode, so get ready to swoon. I’ll apologise now for my overuse of the word ‘adorable’ in this recap, but I think that basically sums it up. Except for the two murder investigations, of course. And the corpse. And the government corruption. But who pays any attention to those things when you have Beo Jin and Park Kyu?
EPISODE 12 RECAP
As Kyu goes to investigate the Prime Minister’s murder he is stopped by an aggressive man, a government official and his new superior. Despite his best efforts to help investigate the case, he is told there is no evidence on the corpse, which has been moved and is ordered instead to investigate the hanging of a plain citizen.
The Lady in Red gives a gift of gratitude to this same government official, who helped get rid of the signs of poisoning on the corpse. He assures her that no one will find out; all of the investigations must be run by him.
Kyu visits the (commoner) hanged man’s corpse, and examines it. He comes to conclusion that the man did not commit suicide; this was murder. The guard assures him that it was suicide, but of course, Kyu in not convinced. He orders to man to investigate whether he had any family.
Madame Park, still convinced she and Kyu were in ‘that’ kind of relationship and she is currently pregnant, pointedly asks Beo Jin whether she lost anything important to Kyu. She thinks back. There was something… In fact, she lost it to him the very first day he was in Tamra. She is, of course, referring to her token for the tax offerings.
Madame Park then asks if she met up with Kyu every night. Beo Jin smiles; “not every night, but rather often”. It wasn’t Kyu’s fault; she was already in trouble with her parents because of what she lost, and a rumour was circulating. Madame Park is shocked; the whole village found out about her son’s improper actions!
Beo Jin is in story mode now, retelling how what he did to her was so very bad. She even went to the police. She laughs at the memory. But now, he treats her very well. Very well indeed.
Madame Park is displeased at this entire situation and informs Beo Jin that once she finds a suitable lawful wife for Kyu, she will accept her as his mistress. But first she must learn about being a noble lady. She warns her not to speak a word of what she told her. Beo Jin has remained adorably naïve if a little confused through this entire conversation.
Kyu returns home after a hard day’s work and pauses in front of Beo Jin’s room. She is attempting to figure out what ‘lawful wife’ and ‘noble lady’ mean. She complains a little: “the exile doesn’t even visit me even though we live in the same house.” I love how she still calls him “Exile”. She opens her door to look out, not seeing Kyu around the corner. As she calls out for William, Kyu’s heart breaks over her for the seven millionth time. William is thinking of Beo Jin as well (bless their telepathy).
Kyu remains outside her room for hours, simple sitting there as she sleeps. Sweet, but is that behaviour slightly stalker-ish, Edward… uh, I mean Kyu?
The next day, Beo Jin’s teacher arrives, to instruct her how to become a noble lady. The teacher is a man. Which is all the more odd when he begins wearing skirts to show Beo Jin the nine poses of a noble lady. Beo Jin is understandably amused and struggles to suppress her giggles. No surprises here: she sucks at the lessons. But she doesn’t think it matters; she’ll be leaving soon to meet William anyway.
He tells her not to speak about other men so easily, then moves on to tell her that if you receive love, it doesn’t matter if it is lawful. Beo Jin is just confused about what ‘lawful’ means. Beo Jin’s reactions to her ‘noble woman’ lessons are both adorable and hilarious. She laughs at his assertion that when she is sitting like a lady, she can see someone’s thoughts hundreds of kilometres away. She eventually collapses in a pile of laughs. I think you just lost yourself a tutor, Beo Jin.
Madame Park informs Kyu of her knowledge of the pregnancy. She tells him that she understands that as a man so handsome he will inevitably have love affairs, but it is so painful for her. Kyu is rather confused, but remains quiet. She instructs him to now begin receiving marriage offers from other noble women; she doesn’t care that this girl came from the home he stayed at, she is not good enough. He shouldn’t get ‘close’ to her for a while. Sex talks with parents apparently were not easier in the seventeenth century.
Kyu walks up to see Beo Jin at her lesson. She hasn’t seen him for a while so she jumps up (to the protests of her teacher) and asks… how William is doing. And Kyu’s heart breaks for the seven million and first time. He simply walks out. Beo Jin, I love you, but could you be any denser?
Kyu arrives at work, and is informed that the man who hung himself had no relatives. But he was married to a woman for a short time before he died. Before he became a regular commoner, he was the private slave of a Lord who was executed for treason. Kyu instructs the man to investigate further about this Lord’s family. He also shows him the bullet he brought from Tamra. He comes to the conclusion that it must have been bought overseas through the black market.
William, meanwhile, is practicing his Korean in the form of a letter. William’s host, Park Yeon, comes to Kyu’s home to deliver it to Beo Jin. He gives Bong Sam the letter to give to her, but he protests; she shouldn’t be receiving letters from other men. Eventually the female maid takes the letter and gives it to her.
William has written how he misses her, but is doing fine. He tells her that he’ll be out the next day, and asks her to come and meet him then.
The Lady in Red is holding a small gathering, celebrating an ally’s acceptance into the position of Prime Minister. Lots of government corruption here.
Apparently, the tutor wasn’t too offended, still helping Beo Jin, this time teaching her to pour tea correctly. She asks to be excused (to meet William), trying to bargain, but he won’t allow her. Eventually she just runs out, apologising.
What ensues is a scene of both Beo Jin and William desperately scouring the market for each other. William tells Park Yeon he wants to watch a comedy show, assuring him that he won’t be caught. As he becomes engrossed, William slips away, just as we see Beo Jin come into sight. She starts whistling in a last ditch attempt to find him, and he hears, just as Park Yeon realises his absence. Eventually, however, Beo Jin and William find one another.
They are both happy to the point of tears, just as Park Yeon arrives to take William away. She starts crying in earnest.
William is taken to meet with the King and informs him of his progress. The King is not impressed with William’s frivolous talents, wanting him to help with weapons. William believes that his arty and musical interests are just as important, for they can bring joy. The King asks him to display this. Or, he will be put to death. He instructs Park Yeon to give William to the court musicians.
As William arrives, he is taken with the fascinating instruments. He attempts to play a violin type instrument, to no avail.
Meanwhile, Madame Park meets with a young woman from another noble family. Both are eager to please each other, the young girl giving her jewels as gifts, and the Mother offering compliments by the bucket load. As the girl begins to call her “mother”, Madame Park sees a possibility.
I’m not sure how happy Kyu will be with this idea, as he walks up to Beo Jin’s room again, hearing her talking to herself about her family, wondering if they are going well. She doesn’t like it here and she misses them. Kyu walks up to her (finally! Only took four hundred invisible visits to her room but he did it) and she hastily wipes away her tears. He tells her there is somewhere he wants to go with her.
He takes her to a lake, telling her to think of it as an ocean. He smiles at her sweet musings on the scenery and fish there. They sit with their feet in the water, Beo Jin smiling widely, exceptionally happy. And she’s not the only one. He says how that makes it more like her… Pony (his old name for her). In retaliation, she calls him Exile.
He harrumphs; how dare she talk to him like that. She pouts, and tells him not to be so mean, or she’ll push him in the water. He dares her to, and she complies, pushing him in. Beo Jin is shocked at what she’s done and apologises as he pulls her in with him. They splash and laugh in the water, like little kids.
Back at home, Bong Sam and Beo Jin’s maid are arguing over the unexplained absences of those they serve. Madame Park walks out with the girl she hopes will be Kyu’s wife, apologising for him not being there. Just as they are walking out, two very wet individuals emerge, bickering loudly (and sweetly), acting a little too close for comfort.
They turn to see their appalled audience. Their guilty looks probably don’t do much to appease Mum’s anger.
She yells at Kyu; he directly disobeyed her orders. He apologises and takes all of the responsibility for it. What a sweetie. She warns him that if he wants to take care of her, he had better not get close to her again.
Beo Jin sits in her room, wondering if she got the Exile in trouble again (aww!) as Kyu barges in, Bong Sam protesting. Madame Park told him not to let Kyu near her room under any circumstances. Kyu defends his actions to the servants, saying he was just walking around the house, he is FINE, making both he and Beo Jin giggle. He leaves, both of them smiling. Could these two be any more adorable?
William has continued to practice his music, and has improved to the point that he sounds amazing. He plays for two village girls, who applaud him profusely. Park Yeon arrives and wonders why he has such a long face. He realises it is because of that girl. William asks if he can meet her again, otherwise he will die. A bit overdramatic, but let’s roll with it. Park Yeon basically says no, because life isn’t fair.
A new pairing has emerged as Yan arrives to visit with the Lady in Red. He seems to be there on his East India Company business, as they converse about the lack of progress in their situation. He warns her that if the port of Tamra in not opened during his stay, his company will not be happy. She says she will keep that in mind. Yan is given a room to stay at her abode.
Beo Jin, meanwhile, asks when her teacher will come again. Her servant tells her he isn’t coming; he doubted her ability to change. While I don’t think she particularly enjoyed the lessons, they obviously gave her something to do other than sit around all day.
As Yan is out, he asks a waitress about the foreigner, to be told he is seen every day… Drinking. She’s referring to Park Yeon, of course. Yan asks directions to where he is staying, so I guess the end result is the same.
William goes out for the day with Park Yeon as Yan watches and follows, also being watched by guards. William meets with Kyu and immediately asks about Beo Jin. He curtly states that this is not about her and goes to walk off. William thanks him for taking care of her, but Kyu tells him that he needn’t thank him; he is only taking care of her because he wants to. William continues to work within the court and on his musical and artistic talents.
The Man in Black tells the Lady in Red he has heard that Yan has some kind of relation to the people from Tamra. She responds that they should keep an eye on him. The foreigner, Park Kyu and Yan- there is something there.
Beo Jin has finally had enough, as she sneaks out at night in her men’s clothes. As she runs out she is stopped by someone asking who is there. She stutters (in a rather high pitched voice) that she is Bong Sam.
Kyu and I laugh at her, as she stands uncomfortably. He plays along asking where she is going so late. He’ll go with her. At this point, she looks around to see Kyu smiling. She is surprised and is about to say something as he puts his fingers on his lips and she imitates the gesture. He’s learning now to pre-emptively prevent her loudness. Does this mean no more kisses?
She seems disappointed to be found, but he just plays along, saying he and Bong Sam are just going to hang out together. They literally run off holding hands, laughing. To answer my earlier question, yes, they can get more adorable.
Beo Jin admires some pink shoes in the marketplace and Kyu is only too ready to buy them for her, getting out his money, but she stops him. As Kyu gestures towards a gisaeng house, she pushes him and drags him away.
They end up drinking together, and Beo Jin is utterly adorable, making tough gestures then hiccupping. Kyu is literally having the time of his life, and I think it will take years for his smile to fade. I forgive him for his earlier Edward Cullen resemblance because he is so ridiculously endearing.
They walk by a puppet show, depicting a comedic love story. Beo Jin giggles at the exchange between the puppets, and laughs even harder when the puppeteers emerge to have their own tiff. Kyu is mildly amused with the show, but he can barely take his smiley eyes off of Beo Jin.
William’s two young friends, the village girls, ask about his little life like models, as he just thinks about Beo Jin’s face as they were separated in the market.
Meanwhile, our new Prime Minister (taken over from the dead man’s spot) is given instructions from the Lady in Red, about a possible meeting with his Majesty and Park Kyu.
The King’s son meets with Kyu, informing him about some kind of underground deal. Kyu asks if in China he saw or heard anything odd. This brings something to mind, as the son brings out a chest with valuable ginseng in it. Something so valuable should have been part of the tax goods. Kyu notices the symbol on the chest; the same one he has been trying to locate, ie, the Lady in Red’s.
The Prime Minister interrupts, telling the Prince that he should experience life with the people of Han Yang, and explore the marketplace for a while. Kyu offers to go along with him. He agrees, and the Lord seems a little too happy about this.
The two are shown around town, and all of the most valuable stores. The Prince notes how many hardships occur, but many nobles are merely interesting in filling their own pockets. He then notices the Lady in Red distributing rice, and asks who she is. He is told that she heads a merchant group, and that she is helping out the poor. Kyu notices this too, and locks gazes with her.
Wow, this episode really brought the cute. It’s not as if it has been lacking, but Tamra has been light on Beo Jin and Kyu fun moments lately, heavy on the sadness. While I love the sadness, because Seo Woo and Im Joo Hwan are amazing, the two of them have such a great dynamic when they are just laughing and having fun like kids. They finally openly enjoyed spending time with each other this episode, so I am one happy viewer.
I am glad William is taking part in other pursuits, although through no choice of his own. His one-track mind can be slightly annoying; I find him simply too obsessed with Beo Jin at times. Sure, she is the one who saved him and cared for him, but life can’t be so simple that nothing matters but one person.
Like I’ve said previously, I don’t want to fault Tamra for any of its issues relating to the cut, so I’ll just observe. There are only four episodes left, and I have no idea how everything will get resolved in these four hours. There seems to be so much left to go, but I guess I’ll just have to roll with it. I trust this drama inherently, so I believe that it won’t let a certain station ruin it completely.
Now to the serious storyline stuff. It seems basically everyone in the government is corrupt to some extent. I’m still not certain what the Lady in Red’s objective is. I’m don’t know whether that is just my daftness in mysteries (don’t underestimate it, really, I can NEVER figure stuff out), if we aren’t meant to know, or if she really doesn’t have much motive. The Lady in Red is still pulling everyone’s puppet strings it seems, so I’d like something to go wrong for her in the future. I cannot wait for her smug smirk to be wiped right off of her face.
- Tamra the Island: Episode 11
- Tamra the Island: Episode 10
- Tamra the Island: Episode 9
- Tamra the Island: Episode 8
- Tamra the Island: Episode 7
- Tamra the Island: Episode 6
- Tamra the Island: Episode 5
- Tamra the Island: Episode 4
- Tamra the Island: Episode 3
- Tamra the Island: Episode 2
- Tamra the Island: Episode 1