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182

The Moon That Embraces the Sun: Episode 16

Aww yeah, the show is good again! This was a strong enough episode to make up (almost, sort of) for the boring stuff in the middle — lots of secrets discovered, truths ferreted out, and big reactions all around.

This is also the episode to finally break the 40% mark, bringing in a 41.3% rating. I’m glad the show delivered a strong episode to mark the big moment since it would be pretty anticlimactic for it to snag “national drama” status via one of the dull episodes where everyone cries and nothing moves forward — although I suppose it makes sense that the strong episode probably had a li’l something to do with the ratings increase in the first place. Wild Romance bowed out with a 5.4%, while Take Care of Us, Captain brought home a 5.8%.

SONG OF THE DAY

Cotton Candy – “어떻게든 살아보려해” (Try to live anyway) [ Download ]

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EPISODE 16 RECAP

Backing up a few moments before the end of Episode 15, we follow Wol as she is called to see Queen Bo-kyung. On her way, she flashes back to a conversation with Seol, where she learns that after her “death,” Bo-kyung was made the new princess bride, without going through another selection process. Ah, I love to see the wheels of suspicion turning in Wol’s brain.

The brothers sit in tense confrontation. Yang-myung declares that he is prepared to give up his royal status to be with Wol — can Hwon do the same? If Yang-myung does as the king wishes and leaves her alone, will Hwon be able to protect her?

Very good questions. I love you, Hwon, but you’re trying to have your cake and eat it too — you can’t have her, but you will insist that she remain alone so that nobody else can, either, making everybody unhappy — and it’s not one of your better moments. Yang-myung comes to that very conclusion, asking how he thinks he can protect her by refusing to give her up, in the process turning the innocent Wol into a criminal. Yang-mung keeps asking these difficult questions until Hwon bangs his fist on the table (a favorite pastime of his) and asks him to stop. Some truths are just too hard to hear.

Yang-myung asks, “Can you let go of Yeon-woo? I can.” Oh, nice — calling out Hwon for his inability to care for the woman in front of him without linking her to the woman he lost. (Never mind that they’re technically the same person.) He declares that Hwon won’t be able to do that, and Hwon can’t argue.

Wol sits calmly while Bo-kyung gasps and stutters, asking how she came to be here, meaning Dead Girl Yeon-woo. Wol reminds her that she called her here. Bo-kyung starts to ask, “You couldn’t be…?” but cuts herself off, telling herself forcefully no, it can’t be.

Wol says evenly, “Heo. Yeon. Woo” and visibly rattles Bo-kyung. Then she says innocently that she keeps hearing that she looks like that girl, but that she is merely a shaman. She says that while she was in the Hidden Moon Building, she saw the ghost of Yeon-woo, which spoke to her. Bo-kyung looks like she’s about to crumple into hysterics at any moment, as Wol adds with creepy intensity that the ghost wishes the queen happiness.

Ha, I love Wol as the cat toying with the mouse. A very smart cat (but aren’t they all?), because it makes Bo-kyung burst out, “There’s no reason she would say that! She would never say that to me!”

She dismisses Wol, who is barely out the door before Bo-kyung erupts into screams. Wol notes that Bo-kyung faced her with horror, not as a woman seeing an old acquaintance: “Why?” Such good questions, finally being asked. If Bo-kyung had nothing to do with her death, you’d expect shock and denial, but not terror.

Bo-kyung sobs to herself, trying to deny that her worst fears might be true. She flashes back to her teenage self deciding she would take that place as princess, knowing that meant death to Yeon-woo.

Wol sees herself out of the palace, stopping by the familiar Hidden Moon Building, which holds such poignant memories. She enters the building, looking around the rooms, opening the windows where she’d once found Hwon waiting for her with the puppet show… and finds adult Hwon standing there now, looking up at the very same window.

She jerks back and shuts the window, then steels herself to open it again — only the courtyard is empty this time. Was he a figment of her imagination?

Wol hurries outside and sadly confirms that he’s not there after all. Just as he walks up from the side, staring intently all the while. He demands to know why she’s here instead of at Hwalinseo. She explains that she was summoned and lost her way out, then excuses herself. He grabs her hand to keep her there, though he doesn’t turn to face her.

They stand with backs to each other as he asks after her health, offering to send her away, perhaps someplace where she’ll be completely anonymous. Wol struggles to control herself, keeping her voice steady as she tells him she’s fine, and not to worry about such trifling affairs. Inwardly she thinks that she won’t be able to see him anymore if he does that.

He asks if she’ll continue living as a criminal for a crime she didn’t commit, and she answers, “How can you say I have not committed a crime?” To herself she thinks that she can’t make up for the crime of not being having recognized him at first glance. Lordy. Okay, I’m docking a few of the brownie points you’ve earned this episode, sappy lady. Thankfully you’ve built up a nice stash, so you can spare a few.

He takes her words at face value, though, asking if she really did seduce a royal (i.e., Yang-myung). She tells him to steel himself and be firm, to not be shaken by his feelings anymore. Their turned backs mean that he doesn’t see her starting to sob, and he drops her hand, telling her dully to leave and never show herself to him again.

She watches him walking away and cries.

Wol returns to find Nok-young awaiting her and faces her coldly, telling her to leave. She hasn’t made sense of everything yet, but she’ll find her when she’s ready. Nok-young says the king has summoned her, and she needs to speak with Wol to know how to answer his questions.

Nok-young explains being caught between the queen dowager’s command and her friend’s plea: “And so, I killed you. And so, I saved you.” She says she is ready to accept whatever punishment Wol intends to mete out.

There’s one thing that Wol cannot understand or forgive, and it’s that Nok-young deceived her father into thinking he’d killed her: “You should have killed me outright.” She says that her father killed himself out of guilt: “No, the moment he fed me that medicine, he had already died. That medicine meant to save my life became poison stealing my father’s life. Do you understand? You did not kill me, you killed my father!”

Wol demands, “The eight years that my family and the king have spent shedding tears of blood — how will you repay them?”

But there is one more bomb to be dropped, and Nok-young explains that spells of this kind require an offering. In her case, there was a young girl who offered herself up in order to realize her personal desires, who participated in the chant and prayed for Yeon-woo’s death. Oh, interesting. I wonder if she was tricked into participating, or if she’s more culpable than we’ve been led to believe.

Wol asks, “Was it the queen?” Nok-young shakes her head, and this makes Wol think of the information she recently discovered — about Princess Min-hwa visiting her room before her death. She shakes her head in denial, but Nok-young confirms that it was the princess.

Min-hwa huddles in her room crying, riddled with fresh guilt over contributing to Lord Heo’s suicide. She thinks of her childhood infatuation with Yeom, and how she had begged her grandmother to help her marry him. And Granny, asking deviously if Min-hwa would “help” her, in order to get what she wanted.

Yeom drops by and sees that she’s been crying. He’s concerned because she’s been holed up ever since visiting his father’s grave, and that reminder sets her off crying again. She makes up the excuse that she’d had a nightmare that he disappeared, and he holds her comfortinly. He says with smile, “I told you that you’re pretty when you laugh, but now that I find you pretty when you cry, I’m in trouble.”

Aw. What poor timing for him to finally soften toward her, when she’s realizing the extent of her selfishness. She asks him to forgive her “for everything,” and he urges her to sleep, promising to stay with her through the night.

Nok-young has a reason for revealing Min-hwa’s part in this, and explains that participating in a rite to kill the princess bride is, naturally, a capital offense. If the truth came out, the king would be forced to punish his sister, and Yeon-woo’s own brother would be punished by association, being married to the criminal. That’s exactly why the queen dowager chose Min-hwa as the offering, because it would be a safeguard: If the king and/or Wol ever discovered the truth later, they’d find themselves forced to keep silent.

Wol asks what she must do. Nok-young tells her she must choose: Reveal all and go to the king, or cover it up and live like this.

Now Wol understands why Nok-young has remained silent — it wasn’t her decision to make. Nok-young says that she will follow Wol’s decision when she meets with the king.

The next day, the king’s entourage happens upon the path of Yang-myung as he’s confronting one of the ministers in the Council of Evil. Yang-myung gives the minister the choice to send the promised provisions to the sick and poor (which he’d embezzled for himself), or face having his corruption revealed to the king.

Hwon interrupts and asks what’s going on. Yang-myung covers for now, saying he was merely informing the minister of the poor conditions of Hwalinseo, because it seems he’s unaware. Hwon stiffens and reprimands Yang-myung for poking his nose into politics, which he is forbidden to do. Seriously, king? You’re going to let your jealousy speak first, rather than dealing with the injustice? C’mon, priorities.

Yang-myung says he is not getting political, but merely offering testimony to the travesty of Hwalinseo — which, by the way, happens to literally mean “place where lives are saved.” But the current Hwalinseo “is a lot more like a place that kills people.”

Hwon says coolly that he had no idea his brother who’d left to go traveling was so interested in the poor and needy. Well, someone’s got to do it, King Mopeypants. Yang-myung reminds him of a king’s service, and Hwon asks if he’s telling him that he’s ruling poorly and sending his nation into danger. Yang-myung holds firm and asks for his understanding.

Hwon blasts his council for the corruption, speaking so harshly that they protest that he’s overstating the offense. He warns them that he won’t stand for embezzling funds meant for public aid.

Nok-young makes her appearance before Hwon, which the queen dowager hears with alarm. She orders Nok-young brought to her the moment she emerges from her meeting with the king.

Hwon starts by asking about Nok-young’s departure from Seongsucheong eight years ago, and she basically cuts to the chase, telling him to ask what he really wants to know. He asks, “Is it possible to kill a person with a spell?”

She replies that it is not possible — or rather, it’s possible but the person behind the spell will die, because a spell always has consequences. If she had ever done a thing, she would have died. (I don’t think her answer is an outright lie, because she could have known this all along; since Yeon-woo was never going to stay dead, her spell didn’t kill Nok-young. But it’s purposely misleading, for sure.)

Hwon is disappointed with that response and so am I, but this is Wol’s decision. In a flashback, we see Wol instructing her not to say anything, because she doesn’t want to add to Hwon’s pain.

Then Nok-young points out that she’s still alive, in a loaded tone. (By extension, this means the subject of the killing spell should also be alive…) Read between the lines, Hwon!

Next, Nok-young is taken to the queen dowager and first lies about Hwon’s reason for meeting her. The queen sees through it right away, so Nok-young admits that the king mentioned Wol; he ordered her to make sure her shamans kept their mouths shut, to prevent harmful gossip about her from spreading.

She also apologizes for challenging the queen previously, saying that she lost her temper out of worry for her shaman charge. She begs for forgiveness, and the queen is appeased. Nok-young thinks to herself that it’s quite ironic that the more the queen attempts to interfere, the more she’s helping the two people.

Hwon is thankfully skilled at reading between the lines after all, because he puts together the clues: spell-caster is alive, and the body was warm even after death. Ergo: “She may still be alive.”

Wol sits with a girl at Hwalinseo who refuses to eat and guesses that the girl intends to starve herself to death. She prods her to talk about what’s bothering her, and the girl says that there’s no point in living when she’s just a useless burden to her parents. If she dies, her family will have one less mouth to feed.

Wol tells her she understands, sharing her own experience of thinking her death would end her family’s suffering. But what parents would be fine after losing a beloved daughter? She tells the girl not to think of dying again and comforts her… just as Yang-myung arrives behind her, having heard the exchange.

What he once desperately wished were true is now a hindrance to him claiming her, and he thinks despairingly, “Please, say it’s not true — that you’re not Heo Yeon-woo. That you’re just the shaman Wol. That you have no connection to the king.”

With the corruption discovered, Hwalinseo receives its delivery of supplies, and Yang-myung gives Wol a book containing medical information. He offers his aid in explaining the contents, but Wol opens the book and gets to reading it right away, which is another telling clue.

He also has a change of clothing for her, saying that he’d like to take her to visit an old friend. He watches her face closely as he refers to Yeom, but Wol turns away to hide her reaction.

Hwon considers the possibility that Yeon-woo is alive, and wonders why she wouldn’t find him if she were. And if it’s Wol, why would she pretend ignorance? She didn’t look like she was lying. Then there’s the fact that nobody confirmed that Yeon-woo was buried in that grave. He shakes his head — this is an absurd line of thinking. Or is it?

Hong Kyu-tae next takes his secret investigation to Yeom. He asks for his explanation of his sister’s death, but Yeom doesn’t have much to add. He’d been sent away and was only there for her funeral.

Yeom hears a sound outside his walls and briefly looks for the source. As he walks away, Seol peers over the wall, on another of her silent vigils. In voiceover, she tells Yeom that his sister recovered her memory, and that he’ll be able to reunite his family.

Yeom finds his mother at her annual wardrobe cleaning, to send the unused clothing to Hwalinseo. This year she intends to send it to the other aid camp — the one where Wol was sent — and he guesses that it’s because of that girl who looks like Yeon-woo. Mom says that even without the Yeon-woo connection, she feels sympathy for that girl and her parents, who’d hate seeing her treated so badly.

He tells his mother of the king’s investigator who asked about Yeon-woo, and that in itself is enough to rouse their suspicions.

After Hong Kyu-tae leaves Yeom’s house, he grabs one of the servant men to ask some more questions. The man admits that there was one disturbing thing that he didn’t tell his master for fear of worrying him. The day after the burial he’d gone to the girl’s grave and found it all torn up, like wild animals had been pawing at it.

Just then, the man spots Seol walking by and recognizes her as the family’s former slave girl. Hong Kyu-tae turns and recalls having seen her in more recent encounters.

Hong Kyu-tae informs Hwon about the grave digging, and also about the curious woman he’s seen a few times. According to the servant, she used to serve Yeon-woo… and based on his own knowledge, she’s Wol’s bodyguard. Finally, a concrete connection!

Hwon sets out to speak with Nok-young immediately, all the bits and pieces finally arranging them in his head. He lines up the facts: “A spell. A corpse that didn’t go cold. A hurried burial without shrouding the body. A dug-up burial ground. A murder that leaves no trace. Another spell. Seongsucheong. Head Shaman Jang. And Wol’s slave girl who appears at every investigation site.”

Bo-kyung trembles uncontrollably in her inner chamber, shoved into a corner. Her mother pleads with her, but Bo-kyung bursts out that Yeon-woo is alive. She cries that she’s back to claim the king, kick her out, and retake her place.

Her mother tells her that she didn’t steal her position because it was always hers, and that it’s only her guilt in thinking so that led her to hallucinate. Bo-kyung screams, “I’m NOT seeing things!” Now she’s defiant, declaring that she knows everything: “I know Father killed Yeon-woo.”

Mom must be in on all the intrigue, because she looks around furtively and tells Bo-kyung that if she keeps her mouth shut, all will be fine. She whispers, “Have faith in your father.”

Just then Daddy dearest walks through her doors, but his presence sets her off and Bo-kyung screams, “Leave!” She breaks down into sobs and Minister Yoon looks disturbed. He recalls the shaman’s familiar face, and wonders if Yeon-woo could be alive: “Could this possibly be the work of Head Shaman Jang?”

That head shaman is currently receiving the king, who demands the truth — no evasions, no wordplay. He asks when she took Wol as her protege — and whether the dictate for a new shaman to cut ties with her former life means she must intentionally not think of her past life, or if it means she literally cannot remember it.

She answers that it’s usually the first, but she has seen a case of the second, after “surviving the agony of death.” He asks if she’s referring to the horrors of finding oneself buried alive. Did that woman recover her memory, or does she still not know who she is? “And is that shaman’s name… Wol?”

She looks at him in stunned silence, and he demands, “Is the shaman named Wol the same girl who died eight years ago, Heo Yeon-woo?!”

Nok-young nods.

Hwon turns silently and walks out, reeling from the shock.

Outside, he breaks down, recalling all the harsh words he had for Wol, and all the hardships she has suffered recently.

He sinks to his knees and cries, clutching his heart, sobbing, “Yeon-woo-ya…”

 
COMMENTS

Thank heaven for that! I’d been starting to tire of Hwon, which was a very sad feeling because I loved his character earlier on and love both actors. It’s just that he’s so frustratingly stuck in ONE mode, one point in space and time, and it’s hard to sympathize with someone who gets super-angry at the hand he’s dealt but seemingly does little about it.

In that sense I’ve been siding with Yang-myung in all their recent arguments, even though ultimately I want Hwon and Yeon-woo to find their happy ending. It’s just that Hwon’s struggles are all internal, with himself, and it makes for very little movement in his character. He’s also locked into the past, unable to separate Yeon-woo from Wol. Forget for a moment that we don’t technically have two different women vying for his heart; his inability to distinguish is still important, because it locks him into the past, and you can’t do a whole lot of good about something that’s over. It points to Hwon’s inability to do the hard thing and deal with the present, as Hyung-sun so earnestly begs him to do. He has dug in his heels, conflating past with present.

I think the drama is going with the “undying love that will never change” theme, but there’s a delicate balance to be struck in that kind of scenario. You don’t want your hero to seem fickle, but at the same time, you go too far the other way and he’s foolishly obstinate. It would have loved for the couple to fall in love anew, which would have made that theme even stronger — he’ll love her as Yeon-woo, and he’ll love her as Wol. We got a few moments early on when he was struck by her wise answers, but mostly it feels like he’s superimposing a dead girl over Wol. I was therefore more moved by Yang-myung’s trajectory than Hwon’s, because he loves the woman for who she is now, not for a memory.

The problem for Hwon really extends far beyond Wol, even though she’s emblematic of the issue, because it affects other quarters of his life. As a king, he knows who his enemies are and he’s deeply suspicious of their motives, and yet, most of the time he’s just reacting to them rather than being active. Or, better yet, proactive. I miss the wily young prince who outsmarted his crafty grandmother by mobilizing the scholars, who got stuff done.

Now that he knows, and she knows, and everybody and their mother (literally!) knows, I really want Hwon to step it up. Show us what you’re made of, please! I know there’s a lot more to you than a fist-banging, order-slinging, angry puppet king.

The last three episodes really stepped things up for the drama, and I find my interest finally back after waning for a number of weeks. One of the big problems is that for so long, almost every single element of conflict was driven by lies. One person lies to another, who lies to another, ad nauseam, sending people in this round robin of truth-seeking, who are spun around in so many directions by secrets and lies and noble idiocy. It’s a lot of talking, but not a lot of doing. So I’m especially excited now that the lies are out in the open, because maybe now we’ll finally get the plot moving again.

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"A very smart cat (but aren’t they all?)"
Not Tom :D

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Watching Kim Min-seo in her crazy scene gave me the feeling of the most delightful combination of dismay and excitement. She really friggin killed that scene. I want to see her in a leading role waaaah! /whine

As for the rest of the episode, man. Thank the heavens that this drama has found its footing again. I feel like they meant to make all the middle stuff dull and slow just to draw a sharper contrast between it and the last stretch of the drama. If so, they kind of overdid it, but at least the plot is alive again, yay.

I just HOPE WITH EVERY FIBRE OF MY BEING that Wol decides to out everything and deal with the consequences rather than take us all on another infuriating round of Noble Idiocy and decide to cover it up. Cause only 4 more episodes!!

And as for Min-hwa committing a capital offense or whatever, she was like, 10 or something wasn't she? But since it's a sageuk they probably won't care. But I want them to get on with the romaaannnce. I feel like that's been put on the back burner for most of the adult arc just to deal with the politics and lies, which is frankly a lot less interesting. Grah.

Thaaanks for the recap <3

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thanksomuch!

i always read your recaps before watching the vids so i can understand some of the terrible subbing this show has..

great work!

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I'm one of those that never understood the love Yang Myung had for Yeon Woo/Wol. How many times can a girl say no before he gets it? He says he can give up everything for her, but there lies the contradiction. If he was really truly listening to Yeon Woo and to Wol, the one thing she has always wished is for him to let go and find his happiness elsewhere. Well if he says he can give up everything, then that everything should include Yeon Woo/Wol herself. If he can't give her up, then he has perjured himself when he said everything.

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Ooh.. so agree with you! How can you say it a love if you see it only through your eyes?
But I think in the end YM will realize this and help his brother and YW united. BTW, am I the only one who can feel the charm of JIW? I like Lee Min Ho better as YM.

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why should yang myung help the king ? his family has been ostracised from the king family.

Look at yang myung's mother, where did she live ?

not in the palace but instead at the temple.

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Thank you so much for the recap!!!
this episode is Daebak!!!

finally...everything's coming out to light...now i'm curious as to what King Hwon will do next...
can he stand to be separated from her for even a minute?

I feel bad for Princess MinHwa, she was used by her evil grandma and she's the one who's forever blaming herself....

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I almost put this drama into my good-drama-turns-meh box (and I already have a lot in there!), but thank God the last two episodes bring me back.
Actually I was hoping that based on the preview this episode finished with Hwon and Wol met and acknowledged each other, so in the next episode Hwon allies all his power with Yeon Woo's forces and they plan how to outmaneuvre the Dowager Queen and the minister, bring Yeon Woo back as the rightful queen. But nooo ... the drama just had to be dragged a little more and there is another episode for that!
I was expecting this drama to show more intrigue and battle of wits between the good and evil, instead of only stating angst after angst. There are 4 more episodes, and I really wanna see how all the problems justifiably solved, no time jumping or lucky coincidence. I'm gonna hate it if the grandma and Queen Bo Kyung just go hysteric and suicide, thus everything back to normal. Oh well, lets just see ...

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BoKyung's hysteria is a bit questionable though...is she really sad to maybe have been so easy to accept the death of someone to be queen or that she fears losing her throne.

Wol and that comment about just being a "shaman" had me laughing.

I agree that we need more action! I wonder how they are going to wrap up the baddies and get this story into happy ending mode. 4 more episodes to cover and NO EXTENSION!

I forsee more Wol/Hwon action and eventually...someone will die...also isn't wrong for Hwon to have spent so much time with figuring out YH's death versus the people/Corrupt officials.

I agree also with the YM being the noblest of the two but also it provides a comparison on love. YM loves Wol for her and has left YH but one can argue Hwon is stronger for holding on to Wol...undying love.

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That screencap of Hwon crying just breaks my heart. T__T

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thanks JB

The stepping-up of this drama comes too late !

Although it is another 4 episodes but it has got 2 episodes to complete the whole drama, so the ending will be an open ending for viewers to decide according to their whims.

Yes, as for yang myung it is better for him to leave the country and live freely as what his teacher had taught him.

"Shaman" wol, it is better not to be associated with the king because you can't be reinstate as queen immediately without approval from the counsel, the procedure will took sometime, so in the meantime what will you do? .....play hanky panky with the king?

Min Hwa's husband should forgive her because his family live very well (wealthy) after Wol's "death".

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Javabeans/ Girl Friday! i've began to devour, not just read, every word of ur recaps AND also the rant and raves that follow. kudos not only for the top notch write-up but also for inspiring a band of faithful (like me!) caring enough to give our take/ analysis/ predictions/ projections of the eps! if i were mbc, i'll pay u all for a focus group session (: love reading what e-one has to say because we're so one in this drama together. yipeee.....!!!!!!!!!

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This episode...and the 'adult cast' preceeding ones, which I will refer to as *Zombie-Wol, Evil-Road bumps & King-white-pajamas-can't-get-laid*....have convinced me that what I'm REALLY watching the show for is NOT:

1) stellar writing
2) appropriate adult casting
3) astounding, thrilling plot movement
4) skinship

....it's RESOLUTION.

dammit.

The young cast - even with flat characters and hair-thin plot - created a rosebud of beauty and charm. It was sooooo enticing and endearing --- and I must....MUST have a proper resolution to their efforts. (sigh...slight rant over)

p.s. I was holding out for Princess MinHwa to be a late-game wildcard of nobility. But, I was functioning under the impression that she was manipulated...NOT that she was *actually* praying for YeonWoo's death. If that plot-point plays out....she's dead to me.

p.s. #2 - if...at the end of this drama King-Hwon has STILL not been laid by somebody...anybody ~YeonWoo, BoKyung, palace maid....Woon.....dun'care. SOMEBODY please step up and give the King a proper *bedding*...or I will never forgive you...show. ಠ_ಠ #◄---- angry side-eye

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"p.s. #2 – if…at the end of this drama King-Hwon has STILL not been laid by somebody…anybody ~YeonWoo, BoKyung, palace maid….Woon…..dun’care."

LOL i was hoping you'd comment :D

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Hahaha its all about "Which of these virgins" will get laid first?. Will it be the king, Queen, Wol, Woon,Seol, the chicken?. My money is on the chicken Lol.

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Wahahahaha!! p.s. #2 is pee-in-your-pants funny! Although . . . I'll fight the King for Woon-ah =)

I wonder how it's gonna end in four episodes. Skeletons are surely running out of the closet one by one. AND if Princess MinHwa really did pray for YW's death, I'd voodoo pray she won't get laid. EVER.

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you are too funny!!!! seriously right? They need to get a moving in that department. Kiss scene please :)

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Wow, this is the most epic episode ever! I could literally feel the heartbreak at the end of the episode. I shedded a tear along with Hwon.

Crap, now i have to wait till next week, not so awesome.

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I like the fact that Hwon keeps rejecting Wol, but I don't think it's as simple as because he can't forget Yeon-woo. I think he's a realist. He knows that they have a connection, but he realises that a lot of that is based on the fact that she looks like Yeon-woo. Also, if her character was wildly different, then maybe that would make it easier (like it did for Kim rae-won in WSAYF), but there are enough similarities that he can't separate the two, and so for him that makes Wol a reminder of Yeon-woo. For all his declarations of loving Wol for herself and letting go of Yeon-woo, I think Yang-myung is deluding himself for exactly the same reasons that Hwon is not. If Wol had a different face, would he still be in love? I love the fact that Hwon is so steadfast in the face of such temptation.

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OMG! they know!! the KNOW!!!!!

why isn't Wednesday already!

Thnak u for the awesome recap :)

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Wooaa
at last the king know the true
i cant patient until next week >__<
and thank you for recaps

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I liked this episode, but I love the novel version of the drama more.
Because in the novel - as so far as I know - Hwon fell in love with the shaman Wol too. He loved Wol for Wol and not just for being Yeon Woo or reminding him of Yeon Woo. <3

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can u help me?? where can i find that book in the internet?? is it translated in english??

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Thank you!! Awesome recap like always :D

Great episode! Hwon's breakdown at the end broke my heart. Now I'm just hoping for some skinship between Hwon and Yeon Woo (and I'm still going to be delusional about Yeom and Seol thank you very much!)

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I totally was not expecting the Min-hwa involment. I just thought she knew of the Dowager's involment. But she actively participated.

Sorry darling, but I think if Yeom finds out, he will leave her pronto presto!

Except if he has fallen in love with her during the years....but still....but then she was young......but still

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Hwon ship all the way and YM just go fly kites. Easy to say that u can drop everything since u hv tt freedom. But his is such a hipocrite. Being a king in that era one must understand the King pronlem. His every steps being watched.

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his every step is being watched indeed. and YM's words sounded shallow for lacking empathy.

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It would have been easier for me to hate Princess Min-hwa, if her actions during the ritual clearly pictured her praying/begging for Yeon-woo's "death". And I hate it that Nok-young basically threw her under the bus by revealing her involvement first when Yeon-woo was ranting about how NK could've deceived the Heo patriarch about what would really happen to her after drinking that medicine. She was deflecting YW's anger by dropping another huge bombshell on her.

I don't really take Nok-young's words hook, line and sinker. She likes to speak in loaded tones which would make the one on the other half of the conversation think really well in order to piece the clues together.

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Three cheers to this drama. Broke the the 40% mark. Tmtets has an array of excellent actors n actresses. Everyone acted well. The nutty one acted nuttily, the wicked ones acted wickedly, the unconditional love giver, YM loves unconditionally, (even though being rejected many times) the king acted kingly-ly, hyun sun acted hyun-sun-ly, and my beloved seol acted protectively, the True Queen acted Beautifully. P/s. Pardon my home grown adjectives.

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Thank you for your fast recap and review but in the process of reading this, I recall the other K drama - stairway to heaven, the story line is so much alike and the characters are always struggling with their past and the current position. The major differences between this too is the time of the story, one is modern time and Moon Sun is a period drama. I don't know if anyone else see the resemblances of the two dramas.

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i did. and stairway to heaven was waaaayyyyyyyyyyyyy sadder.

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Stairway to Heaven is a damn drama. The main girl is exactly the same and yet his father doesn't want to believe that it's her when they are exactly alike. As a father, you should have at least doubted that it's her.

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thanks for the recap!!! been waiting for this for a while!

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It's a heartbreaking episode indeed.I want to see more action from the king's perspective. Now that the truth is uncover it's just right to see more action to be done
and be utilize...

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I'm the only one that doesn't buy MY saying he likes ''wol'' ??? I still think he likes the YW that he sees in her.

Hwon is not doing much either BUT is not like he is the one wrong. Yeah he is the angry king, while MY is the whine prince.

I don't get why everyone is on MY's side.

Is easier to go after Wol when you are the prince and you don't have much responsibilities like the king has.

And is not like Hwon can just give up being the king like this.

Actually I'm wishing Hwon did it, like, he says ''MY take the trone, you who complains to have nothing take the throne! '' I wonder if MY would accept and do it or would run away - because he loves to complain but when things get serious he always run away !!

He isn't helping Wol - he is putting his and her life in danger. Grrrr. And he has to understand that she doesn't and won't love him or be together with him.

Gah.

Both guys are annoying - because how come Hwon just felt bad for what he did and say to Wol after knowing she was YW?? So if she wasn't YW would it be okay????

Gah.

Seoul and Wol run away and be happy, my friends, these two men are too complicate to deal.

But if Hwon did this, you still would complain, calling H a bad king because of it. If Hwon choose love over his throne people would complain...

I kinda think MY would be a good king - he would help the poor and all...

Maybe Hwon and Wol run away in the end and MY be the prince - the queen goes crazy and so Hwon is free, and the dowager and ministrer Yoon get what they deserve!

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And MY be the king*

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Not everybody is on YM's side. Hwon has ALOT of people still on his side.

I do not agree with all his actions or non-actions but I do not want Hwon to give up his throne for YM. That would really piss me off.

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To those who cant understand Korean and relies on these recaps, there is another blogger that provides faster recaps and a more descriptive dialogue. Not that l love drama beans. I usually go to that website first and watch the drama then go here to review.

Anyways go here : http://soulsrebel.wordpress.com/

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I was definitely siding with YM because he officially did not know that wol was definitely YW so he really still has a chance with Wol. However, in light of both of them finding out for sure that Wol is in fact the supposedly "dead" YW, really YW is still the King's woman. I also hated to fact the Hwon just didn't seem to be doing enough... sure, he's stuck in his position - but it just wasn't enough for me.

Hwon - now that you know it's your girl - do something about it!!! YM stepped it up a lot - and finally - for goodness sake.

Thank goodness Wol's character now has some umph... better late than never. She was always a clever girl - and I felt like she could solve the entire mystery before everyone else and hopefully figure out a way to one up - the dowager queen, the queen and her horrible father.

The last 2 episodes brought me back into this drama - it definitely was wanning on me and the really high ratings made me have high expectations for it and it just didn't keep up. But now that everything's out and Wol knows - I hope they can move things along... only 4 episodes left - feels like a lot of cramming.

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No subs yet but OMONO! HWON! Aish. I don't know if I'm more sad or mad at him. He's NOT DOING ANYTHING! I'm so glad everyone has FINALLY found out the identity of Yeon-Woo. Took them long enough! Now we need Hwon to transform into a hardcore romantic to win back Yeon-Woo. Cuz seriously, after all that struggle and hardship I don't know if I would want him back, if I were Yeon-woo. Yang Myung is sure treating her better than he is! *Huffs* I am totally addicted! I am hoping that Yeon-woo and Hwon can finally be reunited as lovers!!! Hwonnie better prepare himself and win back the woman of his dreams!

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LINTENSITY ; )

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I've come around thinking Hwon is good treading where he is on his everlasting love for YW. I've come around to the conclusion, only by Wol being and in fact is YW may she claim being Queen one lifetime by his side, otherwise being Wol at best she's a concubine and he deem those are unnecessary for his King

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oops, hit the wrong key

... for his King's eros. I want to believe Hwon is fighting for his Queen's seat and right, belonging solely to YW, and it's not just about a man and woman getting together but all the politics at stake too. So I'm glad he didn't cross the line seeing Wol for Wol like YM did. Only Hwon's stubborn way Wol possibly being YW is she able to reclaim her right as Queen.

And I totally get why YM wants Wol to not be YW, because his chances with her become obsolete when she realize that.

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That's why he started tearing up and was thinking "no, no!" as it became more and more evident.

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It's interesting to see one brother all about titles and merits 'cause that's been bombarded onto him at birthright whereas the other brother cares less about those titles given his birthright and seeks a more universal element in life.

Humans haven't changed, there are still those today splitting Hwon's or YM's ideals.

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Traditional vs. Conventional ideals correct? Conflicts like these are never ending right? There are moments I want to unrelinquish tradition and argue to challenge it but then I reflect and the best of me won't allow that to happen.

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I actually watched this episode rather than relying on recaps like I did for the last couple of weeks and I am so thankful I did. I was actually crying in front of my computer at the ending scene. Such a good actor. And this was the first episode I approved of all the crying; Hwon, Bokyung, Minwha. Yes, yes, yes.

I don't think this drama deserved the ratings it received in comparison to other dramas, but I guess it is all about timing - although, to be honest, I enjoyed Wild Romance the most which became more of a solid, interesting drama as it went along. I was spooked. I was in Korea for a holiday until two weeks ago, and the interesting thing was that we watched Moon Sun when it actually aired because we had alleh replay tv, but that channel was the only one that didn't let us watch episodes from that week for free. So we never watched Wild Romance or Take Care of Us Captain in its actual timeslot because of that. I wonder if that might be a (very, very) small reason that adds on.

However, it says a lot for the fusion sageuk as well as the actors if it can keep such an audience. I'm excited for what's going to happen from now.

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thanks for the recap :)

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Since in order for YW and Hwon to be together in the end, they need to get rid of the Queen somehow, and based on her performance here, my guess is that she is going to end up going BAT CRAZY.

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For the queen's father, it's treason. Knowing and withholding that knowledge is being accessories to that treason. It could be heads off for both of them.

I think that it is more likely that the queen is exiled somewhere or made a slave and treated kind of like she treated Seol as a girl.

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The last scene, when the king fell and cried on his knees and HS fell and cried too, for his king's pain, was very touching.

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oh yeah.. the queen is going crazy! well, that's ryt! juz keep doing it, so yeon woo will replace you!! hah!!

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How can Kim Soo Hyun call out a name so heartbreakingly?

Omg ;____;

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And her being right there, even in his bed with him. And he sent her away and allowed her to be tortured and pummeled with rocks has got to kill him. Again, he didn't protect her. (I'm sure MY will use that against him again.)

I am sure that he will do everything to save her this time.

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Just wondering, falling in love when a teenager and now as an adult, surely somehow it is not the same kind of feeling.

People change (character) no one stay the same from then till now ?. Make believe whimsical wish from the scriptwriter and us too !.

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I must say, top acting this week is from Queen Bo-Kyung. Every bit of her facial expression, eye movement and her tonal voice make me believe she is living in that situation. The king and his brother, i feel their acting and they acted rrreaally good, but the queen, she's simply the queen..rather i don't feel its an act.

Wol? though her story development seem more interesting, i still feel detached when she spoke. Compares to her last week stellar performance, this week she's a normal lead actress in dramaland.

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this show made me fall in love with Kim Soo Hyun
Great and touching!!
the plot, the romance, the acting....superb! loving and discovering - what more can i ask for...

. JUST A TORNADO KISS.......PLEASE PD

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Tornado kiss - LOL :o)

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there is possibility that The Moon Embracing the Sun will not be aired.

In the telephone interview with Hankooki, management agencies of Kim Soo Hyun, Jung Il Woo and other actors who are starring in The Moon that Embraces the Sun said, “The football match may decide the story that comes out from the set. PD Kim Do is prepared.”

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he broadcast of The Moon that Embraces the Sun may be canceled due to the 3rd round 2014 World Cup AFC qualification for Group B between South Korea vs Kuwait held at Seoul World Cup Stadium that is broadcast starting from 9pm on February 29th, 2012. An international football match inside the country is normally held at 8pm. In this timing, the earlier MBC sitcom High Kick 3! Counterattack of the Short Legs broadcast on 7.45pm is canceled. This time, due to the timing of the match, there is possibility that The Moon Embracing th

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This show seems to have all the right things but somehow it doesn't move me enough to cry...well except for the child Yeon Woo's "death scene" with her dad!

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Finally watched it ( watched Ep15 subbed at 85% and it sucked, that extra 10% subbing makes a huge difference).

I'm all for Yang Myung/Wol rather than the Hwon/Yeon Woo. I'm sure I'll be soundly disappointed.

I mean Hwon is the king after all and we all know , "It's good to be the king.", as per Mel Brooks.

I feel for Yang Mung. He at least makes Wol laugh and feel worthy. He loves the girl. Hwon is just too angry & angsty for my taste.

Anyways, next week's episode should be interesting. When is there going to be some swordplay ? I want to see Woon and Seol slicing and dicing some of the bad guys. Probably not going to see that though.

Hats off to Kim Min Seo for her portrayal of crazy Queen Bo Kyung. I'd like to see Jan Shil choke the Dowager Queen with a curse of her own. It would be awesome if it were Jan Shil rather than Nok Young , 'cause Nok Young is tainted as far as I'm concerned.

LOL at the comments regarding who, if anyone is going to laid in this drama.

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what i liked about hwon is that even if he's selfish and bratty, he is honest by nature. he does not deceive others and he cannot lie to himself. and that's what makes him suffer. i think deep in his heart he never believed for a single moment that wol is not yeon-woo, even if all logic in his brain tells him otherwise. that may explain his confused decisions, and why he could never get over both yeon-woo and wol.

it makes me a little sad that we are down to 4 episodes, when there is still room for development of the romance and the characters. but having seen the previous episodes, it is evident that the material is already stretched thin as it is. anyway, i hope that the last episodes would be a satisfying buildup to an ending that deserves the show's outstanding ratings. (and actors. and audience.)

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just to add to my theory, why did hwon open the case of yeon-woo's death 8 years ago anyway? why now? why not when he was a newly proclaimed king and gained the power to investigate? because he met wol and was reminded of yeon woo? was it to prove that wol is not yeon-woo? or to prove that she is?

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the reason why Hwon re-opened the case is because Wol's handwriting is identical to Yeon Woo's handwriting (ofcourse coz they are the same person LOL)

...just incase you missed that scene.

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oh, so i guess he's really trying to prove that they are the same person. thank you for clearing that up! i forgot that detail, i think i need to watch it again :)

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finally!!!

Now I wonder how Hwon will recover the Queen position for Yeon Woo-ah!

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love love love kim so hyun!!!!!!!!

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I totally agree that the show was getting pretty slow. I normally watch the show as soon as it gets subbed, but I actually just finished 13-16 in one go. And it finally picked up! I was sooooo happy that Wol finally got her memory back. It was getting a bit tiresome. I love that all the lies are coming out. And I want Wol to get a bit of revenge. She was pretty badass when she stared Bo-kyung down.

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Soo Hyun's performance in this episode totally grabbed me especially at the end when he cried his heart out. :'(

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