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Jackpot: Episode 2

It’s all about one baby this hour, with everyone either out to kill it, save it, or generally just use it for their own nefarious purposes. Subterfuge doesn’t work in a drama where secrets don’t last very long, leaving the baby hero’s mother in a position no mother should ever be put in. Jackpot may be proving itself to be many things, but visually uninteresting it most definitely is not.

SONG OF THE DAY

Brown Eyed Girls – “주사위 놀이 (Dice Play)” [ Download ]

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EPISODE 2 RECAP

When Man-geum can’t understand how he lost the game, King Sukjong tells him that he was counting seven cups from a full bottle—but the one in their game had already been used to pour one cup. He knows this, because Yi-soo made sure of it.

So now, according to their agreement, Man-geum’s wife now belongs to him. Man-geum bows and scrapes, pleading with the disguised king to take pity on his wife, who’s only known suffering since she’s been with him.

The king knows this much, and casts a look downward toward the prostrate Man-geum. “As for your wife, is it not better for her to be with me, rather than a gambler like you?” Man-geum can’t exactly refute this, nor can he do anything to stop Hong Mae from taking what’s owed.

Despite the pouring rain outside, King Sukjong opens the palanquin door to see Bok-soon tucked neatly inside. She avoids his gaze, and no words are exchanged as he sends her on her way to the palace.

After being beaten senseless by Hong Mae’s thugs, Man-geum returns dejectedly to his wifeless home. Injwa materializes from nearby and tosses him a handful of nyang, all too happy to inform him that he was fooled by none other than King Sukjong.

There must be a reason behind him telling Man-geum this, even though all Man-geum can do about it is to just beat helplessly on the palace doors, calling for the king to return his wife to him.

As he’s dragged away by palace guards and beaten, King Sukjong enters the bedchamber where Bok-soon waits. “You are mine,” he says, possibly in voiceover. “You are now the king’s woman.”

Man-geum is imprisoned for the night, and is led in the morning by two very unsettling eunuchs to meet with the king himself. Knowing now that the game was rigged and claiming that he can’t live without his wife, Man-geum proposes one final, fair gamble.

He’ll put everything he has on the line—his pride, and his very life. The threat is real, since the king needs only to utter one word in order for Man-geum to disappear, which the gambler accepts. The game he proposes is simple: they’ll each predict the weather for that night. Will it rain, or not?

The king accepts, and Man-geum is given the opportunity to call his bet first. Now we understand why Man-geum was watching his surroundings during his walk so closely—it was so that he could make an informed prediction. He bets that it will rain tonight, leaving King Sukjong to make the opposite bet.

That night, Man-geum looks up at the sky anxiously, thinking of his wife. He promises her that he’ll defeat the king in order to win her back, a prospect that doesn’t seem so farfetched, since Yi-soo warns the king to call off his bet since all signs point to rain tonight.

But the king refuses to go back on his word, and it does indeed rain. Man-geum cheers beneath the downfall that he did the impossible and won against the king.

His former wife, under the nearby eave, seems much less impressed. With tears in his eyes and euphoria in his voice, he tells her she’s free, a word which she ruefully points out as ironic coming from him.

“I will not go,” she finally tells him when he tries to take her hand to lead her home. “When I lived with you, I was never free,” she adds, shaking with anger. Having to be his wife meant taking care of an irresponsible gambler on what little money she could keep from him, so why on earth would she ever go back to him?

“Perhaps, if I had not known that I had been used as a wager…” she begins, then stops. “Even if I did not know that, it is already too late.” Despite Man-geum’s apology, her opinion remains unchanged, which she claims is because she’s no longer the Bok-soon he once knew. With that, she leaves once and for all.

Elsewhere, Yi Injwa praises Yi-soo for his hard work, since none of this would’ve happened without his help. The only recompense Yi-soo asks for is the answer to a question: If Injwa doesn’t want the king dead, what does he want?

Looking off into the distance, Injwa declares his intention to begin a new era for Joseon, one which will favor even the lowest born in society and be open to all its subjects.

October 1693, six months later. Bok-soon, now an official royal concubine, gives birth to a baby boy. The two creepy eunuchs tell the king the good news, though I’m sure everyone’s wondering how she conceived such a healthy baby in only six months.

Man-geum’s still up to his old habits, and on an especially self-destructive path after learning that his former wife had a child. The talk is that she just had it prematurely, but the palace maids are of the opinion that it can’t possibly be the king’s child.

Bok-soon, now known as Choi Sukwon (“sukwon” being the lowest rank for a royal consort), knows the kind of talk that’s circulating about her baby, and knows that the king is aware of it as well.

The ministers in court go so far as to question the legitimacy of the child, though King Sukjong puts a stop to it by warning that anyone who whispers a word against his consort or her child from here on out will be punished severely for it.

Jang Heebin, now queen consort and mother of the future King Gyeongjong, pays a cordial-seeming visit to Lady Choi. Her motivations become clear when she takes a not-so-subtle dig at the baby’s life expectancy. It certainly can’t be good if he was born so early, no?

Lady Choi holds a meeting with Yi-soo to ask him to carry out a very secret plan—in order to protect her child from the harm that would inevitably come to it in the palace, she asks him to switch her son with one already dead, which he can easily find in villages that have been hard-hit by the recent strain of influenza.

It’s practically unthinkable, but he softens when she appeals to him as one parent to another. So he does as she asks, and fetches a dead child so that she can make the switch.

Before he can take her healthy child, she gives him a necklace made of her old wedding rings, and says her final farewell through her tears.

Yi-soo delivers the boy to Man-geum, explaining that it’s likely his child anyway, having been born only six months after she shared the king’s bed. Man-geum finds new hope looking at the boy, more than happy to believe that he’s his son.

Unfortunately, this means that the king is led to believe his child (well, one of them) is dead. Lady Choi grieves over the dead child in her arms, thinking of the living child she may never see again.

Likewise, Injwa is told that Lady Choi’s son is dead, and there’s a nice bit of cinematography to punctuate this news as Injwa momentarily slackens his hold on the brush he was using to paint, causing red ink to saturate the paper.

But he doesn’t buy the news, and knows the child is alive. He wants to have it brought back from Man-geum, and wants that fact kept a secret. In order to do that, Man-geum will have to be killed.

Likewise, it doesn’t seem as though King Sukjong believes the story either, though he was trying to seem so outwardly out of consideration for Lady Choi. He gives an order to his two spooky eunuchs, though we don’t hear what it is. Presumably they get it telepathically, because they’re weird like that.

The Spooky Twins make it to Man-geum’s house before Injwa’s man, finding it empty. They chase Man-geum and the baby down in the forest, eventually cornering him against a tree. They’re not here to retrieve the child—they’re here to kill it.

Man-geum begs them to spare the child, but it’s only the intervention of Injwa’s man that distracts them from their task. He tells them that he cares not for Man-geum’s life, but he must save the child.

The Spooky Twins are happy to send all three of them to the afterlife, and engage the man in battle. Man-geum tries to run as they’re fighting, but one of the twins tracks him down. Just as he draws his arm back to make the killing blow, an arrow (shot by Yi-soo) lands in his arm.

Yi-soo flees, leaving a shred of his robe behind on a tree, just as the unwounded twin throws a dagger at the infant. Man-geum cries out over the presumably dead child, cursing the two of them for committing such a horrible crime.

Their job done, they take their dagger back and disappear into the forest. Injwa’s man is left with Man-geum, but just as he’s planning to end the man’s life, the baby cries out. It’s still alive, much to Man-geum’s joy.

The assassin finds himself unable to kill Man-geum, but returns to Injwa claiming that both Man-geum and the child are dead. Injwa knows he’s lying the second he says it, and pays Hong Mae handsomely to do the job his man couldn’t. The only intel his man can give him is that the anonymous interloper from the forest was a very good archer.

The Spooky Twins are already onto Yi-soo, having somehow tracked him down using the shred of clothing he left behind. I wonder if he’s somehow aware of this, though he acts like nothing’s amiss as he scoops up his young daughter to go inside.

Man-geum takes the child to a doctor, who marvels over how the blade managed to miss any vital organs. He’ll be just fine.

The next time King Sukjong sees Yi-soo, he’s in the royal torture chamber, being called to answer for lying that the child was dead. Sukjong has the shred of clothing as proof, and angrily stuffs it into Yi-soo’s mouth for his betrayal.

“Who are you working for?” the king asks. Knowing that torture won’t make him talk, he instead offers him a deal: if he tells him whose orders he acted under, he’ll spare Yi-soo’s daughter.

We find Yi-soo walking with Injwa in a dreamlike bamboo forest next, having presumably made the choice to say what the king wanted him to say in order to spare his daughter.

Injwa claims to understand why he’d make that choice, and out of his fondness for Yi-soo and their ties that go way back, he tells him to do what he must.

Yi-soo draws his arrow taut, aims, and shoots. The arrow misses Injwa on purpose, who turns, shares a silent look with Yi-soo, and shoots back. His arrow also misses, which lets Yi-soo know that the challenge has been returned.

Now, both men draw their arrows back and fire. Injwa’s misses, but one of the two Yi-soo shoots manages to graze Injwa’s cheek. They enter a clearing free of bamboo and aim for each other once more, both releasing their arrows simultaneously.

This time, it’s a direct hit for both of them, only Injwa’s not actually wounded—the arrow Yi-soo shot was deliberately without an arrowhead. He, however, shot a real arrow, which means that Yi-soo isn’t getting off as easy.

Tears fill Injwa’s eyes to see his trusted friend coughing blood on the ground, half-chastising him for being so sentimental. In return for what Yi-soo did, he promises to protect his daughter. Yi-soo thanks him with his final breath and dies, leaving Injwa to grieve.

Yi-soo’s young daughter, DAM-SEO, cries pitifully when Injwa brings her father’s corpse home. Filled with righteous anger, Injwa tells the young girl to never forget or forgive the lowly, beastly king of their nation.

Injwa somehow manages to barge into the palace to confront Lady Choi, now claiming to see the person she really is. He thought she would be different from other women because of her low birth, but clearly, he was wrong.

She tries to shoo him out with what little authority she has, but Injwa’s not biting. An innocent man, Yi-soo, lost his life because of her machinations. Giving her the jade rings she left her son as proof he has the child, he tells her when and where to meet him that night, and warns her that both she and her child will die if she disobeys him again.

Man-geum finds single fatherhood a hard job, especially when the baby won’t be quiet enough for him to gamble at will. Of course, it’s the old man with an eyepatch who knows how to soothe the child, and who knows that the baby actually needs milk to survive.

He warns Man-geum to get his life together before it’s too late, or else he’ll end up old and regretful like him. Eyepatch reads the boy’s physiognomy and declares that he has the face of nobility, and proves his reading by throwing a multi-sided die.

Since Man-geum hadn’t yet come up with a suitable name for the child, Eyepatch combines the two characters revealed by the dice: Dae, meaning great, and Gil, meaning fortune. Why doesn’t he name the child Dae-gil? (Go away, Chuno feels!)

Eyepatch also claims that the child’s face is that of a future king, and seeks to prove it by throwing two dice this time, only to be wholly taken aback when both reveal the same “Dae-gil” character. With that royal prediction comes the realization for poor Man-geum that the child is truly the king’s and not his own, which sends him running for the nearest cliff.

Intent on dropping the child into the white water below as revenge on his unfaithful wife, he… does? Wait. What? I definitely wasn’t expecting that when I started the sentence.

But yes, Man-geum hurls the child over the cliff and into the water, proclaiming proudly that he just killed the king’s son. “I did it! I killed a person!” Then the reality seems to seep in that he did kill a person, and his cheers begin to die down.

Suddenly, he hears cries coming from the immortal infant below. Eyepatch, who just so happened to be nearby, scoops the tiny bundle out of the water and chastises Man-geum for trying to kill him. No matter what he does, he won’t be able to change the child’s fate.

Man-geum still refuses to take the child back, leaving Eyepatch to carry it back to civilization. Hong Mae waits for him on the path, and takes the infant from him. Man-geum can have him back once he pays his debt, if ever.

Eyepatch lays into Man-geum for owing Hong Mae so much that she could take his child from him, though Man-geum is quick to retort that even if he could pay her back, he wouldn’t. It’s not his son.

Sighing in frustration, Eyepatch resolves to go rescue the child himself. Whether Man-geum will join him or not is anyone’s guess.

Injwa also reads the kingly features written on the child’s face, marveling that he could even survive a stab wound. But tonight will put the immortal infant’s resilience to the test.

Lady Choi runs to the meeting place Injwa set, his very real threat of killing the child should she not show up at the forefront of her mind.

While Man-geum stays up that night thinking of the baby, Eyepatch tracks it down to the pavilion where Injwa’s keeping it for now. He recognizes Injwa as “Scholar Baek Myun,” a name that frightens him.

Bedraggled and covered in sweat from running, Lady Choi finally makes it to the pavilion, demanding to know what she has to do to get her child back. It’s simple, he claims: if she plays a game with him and wins, she can save her child.

He’s already laid out five cards face-down on a nearby table, and she’ll have three chances to pick a specific card hidden amongst them. But for every wrong card she picks, he’ll shoot one arrow at her baby, swaddled in a blanket within range but too far for her to be able to get to him immediately.

Left with no choice, Lady Choi cries as she chooses her first card. Not it. Injwa sends his arrow flying, though it lands precariously near (but at least not in) the child.

Lady Choi tries begging him, but to no avail. She was wrong, she cries, and she’s sorry—but Injwa tells her to keep playing the game. So she does, but luck isn’t on her side. Injwa sends another arrow toward the child, again landing much too close for comfort.

Sinking to her knees, Lady Choi begs for him to just kill her and spare the child. But Injwa, still bitter over Yi-soo and her betrayal, tells her that he already saved her from her husband. Her life would be useless to him, so all she can do now is choose.

Her hand trembles as she reaches for another card, only to be interrupted when Man-geum comes strolling in with a bottle of alcohol and a sickle.

He’ll pick the last card, but if he chooses the right one, however, Injwa won’t be able to touch his child ever again if he does.

Injwa just glares at him, and Man-geum glares right back.

 
COMMENTS

Whew, that is one special baby. There’s always been a tendency in sageuk toward putting The Chosen One through trials as a baby that no normal child would live through in order to prove his specialness (though I guess that’s how most superhero origin stories begin), but I don’t think I’ve seen an infant put through the wringer quite like this before.

Being stabbed and living through it is one thing—and I’m not saying it’s a necessarily more believable thing—but being thrown off a cliff and into a waterfall before the wound has even healed is another thing entirely. Is this child both Jesus and Moses? And if it’s his fate to become king, to the point where he literally can’t be killed until he fulfills that destiny, will he be powerless against it? If even death can’t stop him, would his own free will even stand a fighting chance?

I’m also not quite sure what to make of Man-geum’s heroic(?) entrance there at the end, since he kind of lost me when he threw that baby off a cliff. I had just started to feel pity for him as a well-meaning (but still terribly unfit) husband, and even more so when he took the child in as his own. The fact that he didn’t know that babies needed to eat in order to survive was an error that could be more or less overlooked, because we all know that Man-geum is a few reigns short of a dynasty. That sort of thing, in context, is harmless enough.

The problem came when that same sort of attitude was applied to the scene where he chucked that tiny human like he meant it, which he did. Having him go from “I killed a person!” to “I killed a person?!” was a small help, but having the child survive certainly doesn’t absolve him of being dangerously stupid. Hopefully, whatever he does next to secure the child’s safety will go some way toward making him a bit more likable, especially if he’s not going anywhere anytime soon.

Aside from the attempted infanticide, this episode made great strides toward establishing the kind of world we’ll be inhabiting for the next several weeks, and I’m liking the more fantastical aspects presented. That scene in the bamboo forest with Yi-soo and Injwa was absolutely stunning both visually and emotionally, and it’s those kinds of scenes that can make or break a sageuk for me. This one had all the right ingredients: two tragic figures (or maybe just one, since the other is kind of a tool) trying hard not to kill each other, dreamlike action, and a fair amount of pretty. More of that, please and thank you.

Although, as long as we’re being honest, I’m still upset that Song Jong-ho turned out to be just a cameo. ‘Cause you know who would’ve survived that arrow wound? Baby Dae-gil.

 
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'Although, as long as we’re being honest, I’m still upset that Song Jong-ho turned out to be just a cameo.'

Every time I get excited seeing Song Jongho in anything he dies

It's too much for my small shrivelled heart

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He is currently busy with his daily drama, so it makes sense for him to just a cameo.

But still only a cameo.... :(

Poor this guy, it is so hard for being in a weekdays drama

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I take it this guy is the Sean Bean of Kdrama?

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Going OT here.

It was unfortunate for Boromir and his other characters but hey he lived in Troy to say the most memorable lines in the entire movie.

"If they ever tell my story let them say that I walked with giants. Men rise and fall like the winter wheat, but these names will never die. Let them say I lived in the time of Hector, tamer of horses. Let them say I lived in the time of Achilles."

I personally think Sean Bean has some acting chops.

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Every time I get excited about Choi Min Soo appearing in a drama, he dies! He lasted 1 ep in Faith. At least he's lasting 2 eps in this one. That should be consolation.

And Lee Moon Sik is perfect as the hapless gambler. Can't imagine anyone can do it better in that role.

Such wonderful acting from these two while we are waiting for JGS and YJG.

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Our ahjusshis are too epic that they have to kill them off to prevent them from scene stealing too much >:[

Also yes to Lee Moonsik! I'm enjoying him as the hilarious pilot in CBA too~

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Faith was meant to be a cameo appearance. He lived or die at the end in most of his other sageuks.

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For more brilliantly ambiguous Choi Min Soo that lasts the whole show, watch Warrior Baek Dong Soo -- it's from from the same writer and this whole cast features WBDS alum!

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yep, I'm getting so much WBDS feels from this one. Sword saint (who almost lost a hand here again) and Skylord in a role reversal of good vs bad guy..Yeo Gin is so grown up, Jang Geum Suk reminds me so much of Ji Chang Wook.. Aigoo!

Some Iljimae feels too, for that Monk trainer who now plays a traitor/king's sword and that silly father who is still up to no good :P

I was so excited for Song Jongho as well didn't expect him to die so soon XD..

Loving this drama! It's just daebak!

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He is the Sean Bean of Korean Dramas.

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I laughed so hard when I read your comment because before that I never really paid attention to how true that statement is! And though I laugh now his death scene really made me cry especially when In Jwa (who I thought was heartless) was so torn up by it along with his sweet little girl.

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"a few reigns short of a dynasty" Full disclosure, I'm totally gonna steal that line.

Story is set up and, yes, the visuals are great. Don't know if I should thank the director or the cinemotographer (sp?).

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wth is everyone doing??! putting a baby on road to death through gambling??!!

and are we going to decide government's matter through gambling later?

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Yeah WTF is everyone doing? This episode killed it for me. That Baby just can't die, so he's invincible? Fate chose him as Mr. Luck who cheats death his whole life no matter what?! Maybe it's just me, but after he threw that baby down the waterfall I just don't think I can take this show serious at all.

What I loved about Six Flying Dragons was that they explained everything really well. Especially at the first 20 episodes I felt like all the answers in my head where adressed, as if they could read my mind. Everything had meaning and cause. - Not the case here though.

Can anyone explain to me, what that Bambus shooting scene was? A gamble as well? But WHY was that necessary? And why did Song Jongho die that way at the last scene????

I think I will wait until this is over. Not worth waiting 24 eps so the writer becomes sane for 5 minutes in an ep.

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I kind of like this drama because it's different from the last one and it makes me think. Not every sageuks are meant to spoon feed the viewers from beginning to end.

They didn't call it Jackpot for nothing.

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Yeah I get your point. Spoon feeding is probably not the best way to write a drama.

But then when I watch this I keep thinking about it rather negatively than debating with myself about the plot. Maybe I developed a bad case of judicial habit. I hope not.

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Wow. The recap left me almost breathless.

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Sorry, I'm confuse which one is real historical figure & which one is not tbh~
I'm not sure whether this one closely accurate sageuk like SFD or heavily fantasy sageuk like Moon Embrace the Sun.

Choi Min Soo is king sukjong, a real historical figure.
So are Queen Consort Jang Heebin, Bok Soon/Lady Choi (future king Yeongjo's mom) and Injwa ( I think..??)
Yeo Jin Go will be King Yeongjo and Hyun Woo will be King Gyengjong.
So, Jang Geuk Suk is Dae gil= fictional character? Like Man Geum?
I know the gambling setting is fictional but I get confuse with some of the character tbh.

Having said that, wtf Man Geum? Throwing a baby from a cliff?? Really?? And I LOL on your comment that baby DG is both Jesus & Moses. At this rate, baby DG probably can summon dragon and teleport himself tbh~

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FICTIONAL
Baek Dae-Gil
Dam-Seo
Hongmae
Baek Man-Geum

REAL
King Yeongjo
Lee In-Jwa
King Sukjong
Boksoon/Lady Choi
King Gyeongjong
Jang Ok-Jung/Lady Jang

That should be enough for now.

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I guess they will make dae gil as lady choi's first born son that history claim as dead into a plot and twist it a bit (fictional part of the drama). Idk. Just a thought.

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I was thinking the same thing too but maybe Baek Dae-Gil is not necessarily based on Prince Yeongsu (Lady Choi's first born). I don't think he is the king's son at all. I think he is Baek Man-Geum's son who will end up suppressing Lee In-Jwa's rebellion later. Maybe he is based on General/Scholar Lee.
(I could be way off here but I'm just guessing).

His half brother Prince Yeoning (Yeo Jin-Goo's character) should be born soon. That won't be good news for Lee In Jwa. Yeoning will be his real rivalry and not Sukjong.

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This drama sounds interesting. Hope it keep interesting. Many good dramas fails when it changes to adult versions.

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"Is this child both Jesus and Moses?"
lmfao

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So is Dae Gil really the king's son? How can he be borned at 6 months so healthy?

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He is The Chosen One, who destiny to... gamble the nation away..??
lol
Or maybe the King already 'touched' Bok Soon before he win her as a prize. He is a king after all.

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According to the summary Dae Gil is of royal blood but is forced to grow up among the commoners. That means he is the king's son.

Maybe they'll lead us to believe that he is but it'll turn out differently in the end? /shrug. I think it's a bit too obvious that Lee In-Jwa will use him against his brother.

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@hn2 SFD, it ain't ? hoping that it will keep me interested as the king's gambling to steal man-guem's wife was utterly ridiculous plot.

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Another solid episode and the main characters haven't even appeared yet. I'm a bit tired with the characters' tendency to bet on EVERY SINGLE THING but this is a drama about gambling so I'm going to accept that. Like you, I also have mixed feelings about Mangeum. One sec I pity him, but then he always makes sure that I'll never pity him for too long. I lost it when he actually sold his wife. I'm curious whether he'll end up raising Daegil, though. But it seems like Daegil is also going to be a gambler so there's a big chance that he will..?

I'm also upset at the fact that Song Jongho became a cameo yet again, but as far as I know he has this 100eps drama called The Promise and it's still airing right now so I had already guessed that he'd die somewhere along the way. I'm still sad, though. I've always thought that he deserves a main role in primetime drama. I mean, he's got killer eyes that deliver emotion, his acting is always superb, PLUS he's tall and handsome. Producers need to give him a chance, he'll develop that star aura if he gets a chance.

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Lmfo. The baby is both Jesus and Moses. Poor poor thing. He does look really healthy for a premie though and if it's through that our asshole of a king has 'touched' her before he nabbed her from her husband why was he also thinking that the baby's not his ?

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Hi heads...Thank you for recaps.
Reading your recaps always make me feel like I am reading a poetry also some time I feel like your writing in 3D every thing so real in my imagination even in my bad english i still can enjoy your work.
I don't know if its a good thing or not because some time i don't need to watch since i already read you recaps (except SFD).
Last night i watch jang ok jung on you tube just to dig some information about characters in jackpot but so far i got nothing but a memory of sfd (miss u LBW).

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A few reigns short of a dynasty - Priceless. Well played.

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I honestly started watching this after reading your recap yesterday and realising Song Jong Ho was in this. Why did he die?!?!? I love this actor, why is it so hard to watch him on screen T.T

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I'm kinda confused and hope someone can enlighten me.
1) Why did Yi-soo go to forest? Did he hear about the king's plan to kill the baby?

2) Why would it be considered a 'lie' to tell the king that the baby died, when the vampirish eunuchs thought so too. They didn't know that the baby survived the knife wound. I thought that the king was upset that he protected the baby, rather than kill it.

3) In what way did Bok-soon betray Injwa?

I feel like this story is rather loosely written.

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1)I think he heard about the king's plans to kill the baby,not so sure though.
2)King discovered that he protected the baby through that piece of cloth he left and he was mad that he interfered with his plans .
3)Bok Soon did not tell Injwa about the plan of pretending the baby was dead when it was actually alive so Injwa felt betrayed by Bok Soon.
I don't think it is loosely written as a whole though i admit some things were not explained better.

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I'm equally confused with this eps:
1/ why did lady choi send away her pre-mature baby in the first place? if the reason was because of the possibility of a short life span, what difference would it have made by replacing her own going-to-die-baby with a dead one???
2/ does the king actually know if the baby is really his own or he's also mistaken that's why he sent his eunuchs to kill???
super confusing and the intentions were not clearly stated!

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For number 1 & 3, Injwa felt betrayed because Bok Soon did a strong provocative action by pretending Baby Dae Gil died. The provocation that made the King found Yi Soo saving the baby, ended with In Jwa killing Yi Soo who confront him - because the King threat Yi Soo to kill her daughter if Yi Soo did not do something about who ever played behind the scene (InJwa). Yi Soo I think one of Injwa best friend, but he ended killing his own best friend. Thrown the blame to Bok Soon.

Injwa has plan on Daegil, maybe something about making the king son betrayed his father or make the king son to become his puppet to achieve his goal. Thats I assumed from the last scene of episode 2, where Injwa did not really want to kill Daegil, he wanted to nurture him. But he wanted to test his fate by having him tested in arrow game, involving Daegil mama.

For number 2, ummm not so sure. But I think because the King felt hesitate that Daegil was not his son. There was a scene showing that, when Sukjong saying something right before he asked his guards to kill the baby.

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This episode was like, "The Tale of the Baby that Can't Die" XD

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Is it just me or there was an excessive theme of gambling in these 2 episodes As if to really emphasis the point over and over that is is a drama on gambling. Should have cut down on the gambling scenes. We get it what the show is about.

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LOL, i thought the same thing, we get it, we get it, it's about gambling. I would have like to see a not so literal gambling association, like taking risks but its early days yet. There's still hope.

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Welcome to this writer's world, where those who're not meant to die (yet) will miraculously survive all kinds of otherwise life-threatening situations, until the writer decides it's time to kill the character.

Case in point: Warrior Baek Dong Soo.

This writer writes strangely entertaining dramas but one must abandon all logic while watching, if not one'll end up being bald from all the hair-tearing in frustration.

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Lol at Baby Daegil being Jesus & Moses! Hahaha... indeed his great fortune has been a bit exaggerated but that's fine. I'm really looking forward to seeing what becomes of Man Geum, too, especially seeing some tiny bits of teasers, trailers and previews from SBS that show him raising Daegil as his son. We'll see how Daegil will turn out to be as well... from the very short glimpse of ep 3 preview, he seems to be acting a bit like Man Geum lol. I'm also very curious to see how In Jwa raised Dam Seo and why Yeoning-gun could be portrayed further a 'rascal' in this drama instead of the super genius, rather cold hearted prince (and king) he was always described in the history and other dramas/ movies.

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I find this drama very entertaining and am looking forward to next week episodes,now am off to watch CBA.

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Not only is he the Baby That Can't Die, he lives in the Blanket That Will Not Unwrap. Keep that baby burrito blanket around, wear it under your clothes. It is the most resilient piece of fabric in all Joseon

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Wow so intresting.am really loving this movie.

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The Baby That Cannot Die is so pissed off that he can't get a good night's sleep without someone aiming a dagger at him or hurling him over a waterfall. "What can a baby do to get some respect around here?!" he fumes, then dozes off because he suddenly feels very, very sleepy. He wakes up an hour later, makes himself some milk (he is a very clever baby, this Baby That Cannot Die), and then makes a momentous decision: he will run away from home! So he looks for his burrito blanky, packs a bottle of milk in there and ties a big clumsy knot, because his fingers are too short to get a really firm grip. He casts one last look around, hiccups for a bit (he swallowed a lot of air in that fall down the waterfall), and then takes his first steps toward the door - he stumbles on his first attempt at standing, WAAAH WAAAH!!!! he curses, as he remembers he can only run AFTER he has learnt to stand , and geez, that's not going to happen anytime soon! I will never give up, vows The Baby That Cannot Die, if I cannot run, I can CRAWL! He starts to crawl with the burrito blanky hoisted on his back, and the blanky makes his back itchy, so he scratches and scratches his back for a bit, yawns, then remembers he has to run away from home, so he resumes his painstaking crawling again, but, after a while he realises he's not getting anywhere near the door. And then the horrifying truth strikes him: he has been crawling round and round and round in circles! He is so frustrated he starts to wail, and after a while, he starts to hiccup, and then his head starts to nod. The Baby That Cannot Die is fast asleep.

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I just spent a week taking care of that baby while her parents were on vacation in Morocco. She is quite the handfull!

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lmao.
win!
If they can spare an episode on The Baby That Cannot Die, this probably will happen tbh~
Too bad he needs to grow up & learn to gamble T.T

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HILLARIOUS !!!! :) :) :)

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Am I missing my historical connections, or does every saguek made in recent years have a "Lady Choi" character?

Mind, most of the time, Lady Choi is a one of the better characters in the drama. She usually knows her court politics.

A Lady Choi compilation article would seem in order.

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Waiting for JGS and YJG! So excited, the first time I heard about this. Two remarkable actors, started their careers as child actors, leading in one drama. So far I like the first two episodes. Great cinematography! Please appear soon Geun Suk & Jin Goo.

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The Baby Who Cannot Die...

It's the absurdity in saeguk's plots (to make sure it's still relevant to history but still allows for a flair of "artistic licence") that make me keep coming back to it. Good thing there is plenty in this.

I feel you on Song Jong-hoo's character died yet again, on the first week nonetheless.

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I really like how the story is unfolding. The king's voice is SO recognizable - I keep visualizing Moon He Man - the prosecutor in Pride and Prejudice - and have to shake my head to get back in time.

Can't wait until adorable JGS appears large on the screen! (hope he loses that hat). Daebak!

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I'm seriously liking this. Didn't think I would. And I should be more careful about eating soup when I read some comments. The first paragraph of your comments re super-hero baby caused my soup to splatter through my nose. Very funny. Thanks for the recap.

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I have a feeling I'm going to eat my words after trashing it before it came out lol.
I hated Goddess of Fire and I was so bitter that Moon Geun-Young and Jung Bo-Suk were wasted in it.

So far so good and I hope it'll remain that way.

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I still don't know if I'll keep watching this, but I will definitely keep reading the reviews. HeadsNo2's analysis just flat-out cracked me up at the end, and it's been a while since I've seen one of those. The way these ridiculous situations about babies surviving dagger wounds and being thrown off cliffs are portrayed are just uproariously funny. The Baby Who Cannot Die... when the heck did this turn into saeguk Harry Potter?

On another note, if the plot's like this already, I have HUGE doubts about the rest of the story. When the story's hard to buy, the rest of the plot just seems shallow(there are exceptions, like I Can Hear Your Heart's...interesting court cases). Is only the beginning gonna be like this? I don't think so. *Turns warning sensors on.

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LOL sageuk Harry Potter

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Hey
1. Is the baby not the king's son since he was born at six months early ?
2. Is that why he send his minions to kill the baby ?
3. Why did the the mother swap the babies ?

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I am also wondering who the actual father is... I think the baby is the king's son. But maybe he thinks is not his??? but at the same time lady choi gave the baby those rings??? It's confusing, one minute I think he you get hints that he is the king's son then next minute Mna gum's :( then the king's again.... I am so confused.

as for your last question, the other lady consort pretty much threatened to kill the baby... saying how normally babies even born after 7 months do not make it and telling lady choi that she should know how to prepare a funeral table..

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I'm equally confused with this eps:
1/ why did lady choi send away her pre-mature baby in the first place? if the reason was because of the possibility of a short life span, what difference would it have made by replacing her own going-to-die-baby with a dead one???
2/ does the king actually know if the baby is really his own or he's also mistaken???

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For the beautiful cinematography alone I'm looking forward for the next episode. Not only the bamboo confrontation but when Man-geum was watching his surroundings during his walk to meet the king make me fascinated. Every flick of the hands during the gambling part and every sword fighting action are really so artistic for me.

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"Suddenly, he hears cries coming from the immortal infant below." That's legit the funniest thing I've read in forever...

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Wow heads, your recaps is more entertaining than the drama itself. I still couldn"t understand this gambling thingy nation. Still waiting for another recap and comments and as soon as you guys shout that this is a must seen show..then i am in.

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Therd was a lot i could n't undestand. Thanks for the recap. I am already addicted to this drama. N the baby is so cute like my sukkie. 2nd ep is more daebak. Full of suspense. Feeling sorry for Yi-soo. He is a great actor. Cant wait for 3rd one. That will be JGS day.

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Just wondering...I thought palace maid can't marry. Hmm...

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Only the 궁녀 (gungnyeo). She's a 무수리 (musuri), they were lower on the caste system and could get married before entering the palace, since historically in most cases they wouldn't interact with the king.

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I came here after reading the "Beans of Wisdom" comment out of curiosity and my face reading the recaps so far was :O. Did that seriously happen?! I probably will not watch it, but continue to follow recaps after that whirlwind of an episode.

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Sorry if it's a bit off topic, but is it just me, or does one of the instrumental soundtrack pieces sound a LOT like "I am the Doctor" from Doctor Who?

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YES I TOTALLY AGREE, PROBLEM IS I'M LOOKING FOR THIS SONG :(

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I fell for JKS after Mary Me Mary!! His acting was superb. He is the best actor in the world. The drama was very romantic. I watched it more than 20 times. Thanks my suk is back with another fantastic drama. Love you.. ZIKZIN

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I'm equally confused with this eps:
1/ why did lady choi send away her pre-mature baby in the first place? if the reason was because of the possibility of a short life span, what difference would it have made by replacing her own going-to-die-baby with a dead one???
2/ does the king actually know if the baby is really his own or he's also mistaken???

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I need daebak's epic background soundtrack, why aren't they releasing it :(

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I swear that your reviews are “on point” and frickin hilarious. As a US citizen I’m totally addicted to KDrama and need your recaps in order to make sure that I’m understanding the plot of each show and thus getting full enjoyment with a little bit of Korean knowledge. I usually watch a show and then the next day at work I will read your recaps. This is not a good idea as I end up unexpectedly laughing out loud and have my co-workers giving me weird looks. It’s gotten to the point where I will only watch dramas that you have reviewed. I’m glad you reviewed this one because I’m watching this one because one of my most favorite actors (Jang Keun-suk) is the Star. Keep up the great work. You rock!!!!

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