Drama Recaps
Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo: Episode 17
by | October 24, 2016 | 588 Comments

It’s lonely up at the top, and no one’s coming to realize that more than So. Everyone’s becoming increasingly more isolated with all the major changes taking place within the palace, and friends seem to be in short supply. Loyal family members are in even shorter supply. But there’s always love, and these two better relish it while they still can.


After telling Su of his desire to become king, So manages a smile as he asks, “Why, do you not want me to become king?” Su says she doesn’t, but that she hates the idea of being separated from him even more.

“You will become king,” she tells him. “I know that.” But concern floods her expression as she implores him to not kill his brothers, to which he nods his head in agreement, taking her hands in his.

March of 949, one year later.

The palace gates are closed against the sound of a revolt let by So, as Su nervously tends to the king. He swats away the tea she offers, claiming it’s poison, but then he decides to blame his entire situation on her.

According to King Jeongjong, the reason he’s plagued by the ghosts of Hyejong, Eun, Soon-deok, and even King Taejo is because she helped So to cover up his scar. Because So was able to then take what was rightfully his, he’s ended up like this.

Queen Sinmyeongsunseong rushes in to declare that So’s leading a revolt. She pleads with her son to put it to paper that he’ll be abdicating the throne to Jung, since they can’t lose the throne.

“Then… what will become of me? Am I even your son? What am I to you, Mother? Just something that exists to sit on the throne?” Jeongjong cries as he says this, the realization hitting hard. Despite her pleads to the contrary, he now claims to finally understand So, and orders his mother to be taken away.

Su turns to leave, but the king rises on shaky legs to advance menacingly toward her.

Unlike the evil queen, Queen Sinjeong is much more levelheaded about what’s to come, and though she says she’ll follow Princess Yeonhwa’s lead, she tells her daughter that there was something she never taught her: “If you want to become master of the palace, you must be willing to give something up.”

She tells Yeonhwa that she could give up love in order to have the world at her fingertips, or have love, but not the world. “What if I want the whole world?” the princess asks haughtily. To that, her mother can only say that she will cast Wook aside, presumably in order to survive.

Alongside Grand General Park and Baek-ah, So leads an impressive number of forces to storm the palace gates. But before they can advance, Princess Yeonhwa comes out to meet them, accompanied by only a few soldiers.

“I will help you enter the palace without any bloodshed,” she says, the gate open behind her. So says he won’t forget what she’s done, and the men behind him cheer.

King Jeongjong starts laughing as the sounds come ever nearer, though tears fill his eyes as he pours his soul out to Su. “What have I done so wrong?” I was afraid that I would be cast aside as well, just like So was.” Sounding like a lost little boy, he says that his mother told him he wasn’t lacking.

But then he pivots back to blaming Su for everything, throwing her to the ground in the process. As he coughs from his mysterious illness, he begins to write the decree his mother wanted, but with a twist: Su gets to pick the next king. Yes, really.

Before she can answer, and with the sounds drawing ever nearer, Jeongjong writes his answer and holds it out to Su in shaking hands. But then he chokes, coughs, smiles just a little, and promptly collapses. In voiceover, we hear him say, “I was just trying to survive.”

Su cries in fear as the king’s dead eyes stare up at her. So bursts in, takes stock, and quickly reads what the king left behind. After asking Su if she’s read it, he tears it up.

Queen Sinmyeongsunseong comes in to see her son dead. Su drops to her knees to pay her greetings to the new king, So, with the traditional cries of “Manseh! Manseh! Manseh!” So claims that the king abdicated to him before he died, which is all everyone else needs to hail him as king.

Cut to: So being officially crowned as KING GWANGJONG, fourth king of Goryeo (but for ease of use, we’ll stick to calling him So). And Su, no longer dressed as a court lady, smiles to see him in his kingly robes as she thinks to herself that he’ll no longer be remembered for leaving a bloody trail behind his ascent to the throne. “I will help you,” she adds, smiling at him.

We finally get a glimpse of Wook as he broods over his mother’s warnings for him to distance himself from the royal family—their own family will push to have a queen in the palace instead of a king now.

Princess Yeonhwa asks her brother why he didn’t attend the coronation, but he calls her cruel for wanting him to see So on a seat he desperately wanted for himself. All his best laid plans went to waste, since So became the hero who brought down the traitor (Jeongjong) instead of him.

Despite that, Yeonhwa still pleads for his support. If he helps her to become queen, she promises to repay him for all the pain he’s suffered. But she can’t seem to get a reaction—positive or negative—out of him.

So reads through kingly missives until he arrives at one asking for the capital to be moved to Seokyeong (which was Jeongjong’s original plan). But So orders a stop to be put to all the construction, declaring that the capital will stay exactly where it is.

Once he hears that Su is waiting for him, So enters his quarters to find her sleeping sitting up against his bed. He apologizes for making her wait, and shares his kingly dinner with her and Baek-ah, who keeps referring to him formally as “Your Majesty” despite So telling him to just call him “hyung-nim” when they’re alone.

Since Baek-ah replied with the incredibly formal “Your grace is immeasurable” when So put a bit of meat on his rice, Su pranks him by sneaking another piece of protein onto Baek-ah’s plate, prompting the same knee-jerk reaction from Baek-ah. She and So have a good laugh at Baek-ah’s expense.

So is genuinely happy to be sharing a meal with them, seeming more at ease than he’s ever been before. Later, Su approaches him as he sleeps and tucks him in, though he wakes suddenly from a nightmare, calling her name.

When he comes to his senses, he immediately pulls her into an embrace: “I thought you were gone.” She tells him that she won’t leave until he’s asleep, but instead, he pulls her down into the bed with him. “We can just sleep together,” he proposes, though she leaves the warmth of his arms.

She’s afraid of rumors spreading, though he isn’t, and doesn’t want her to leave him alone. He feels suffocated by the specters of those who’ve slept in this room before him, and asks her to stay with him. Then, like a little boy, he snuggles up to her with his head in her lap, asking for her to tell him a story.

She decides to tell him the story of “Little Red Riding Hood,” which he falls asleep to. In the morning, Su wakes up in his bed to find him gone. We cut to her confiding in Woo-hee later, though Woo-hee warns her to be careful—the king will need a new queen, so everyone will have their eyes on her.

She’s called to Queen Sinmyeongsunseong’s quarters only to be confronted by Jung with the remnants of the decree So tore up. The queen wants to know if the king truly did name So as his successor, and Su shakily answers that he did. (They couldn’t just… piece together the remnants to find out?)

The evil queen calls Su out on her lies, demanding to know the truth. She’s stopped by So’s intervention, as he pulls Su out of his mother’s grasp and tells her to ask her questions to him directly. When the queen asks why he tore the decree, So denies being the one who did it.

Su’s hand tightens within his own as So claims that Jeongjong definitely gave the throne to him, even though Jung raises the question as to why he’d do that when Jeongjong had a son of his own. “If you are that curious,” So ventures, “do you want to ask him in the afterlife?”

So makes the threat very clear that if Jeongjong hadn’t abdicated to him, then he would have been forced to usurp the throne, which would have been much, much bloodier. He does take issue to his mother refusing to be called Queen Mother though, since she all but disowns him as she calls him a thief who stole the throne from her real son.

After leading Su out by her hand, So tells her that she’s not to heed anyone’s summons without his permission first. Before she can get a word in edgewise, he’s gone.

Astronomer Choi tells the king that there are rumors going around that he fabricated the late king’s final decree and that Jeongjong’s only son should have been king.

But So puts his foot down, and orders that anyone submitting an appeal against him be charged with treason, and to kill everyone associated with the late king. “I shall not let a single soul live,” he adds menacingly.

Minister Park Young-gyu knows he’s soon to be arrested for spreading rumors that So fabricated the late king’s will and plans to take Woo-hee down with him by exposing her as a spy. Instead of letting him do that, she kills him, and he breaks off her norigae ornament as he falls.

This turns out to be a flashback, since we find Woo-hee nervously holding the very same ornament. She grabs it back from Baek-ah when he takes notice of it, but he has other things to focus on, like getting her adopted into a noble family so that they can be married.

They both know that it’s because she’s from Later Baekje, and because Baek-ah’s family has some bad history with Gyeon Hwon, the once-king of the region. A confusing voiceover from Minister Park tells us that Woo-hee is the granddaughter of Gyeon Hwon, and that he foresaw that Baek-ah would be in danger if he were to find out about her true lineage.

She can’t help but note the irony of their situation, in that the king of Goryeo killed her family, while the king of Later Baekje killed his grandmother’s family. But Baek-ah knows that none of that was their fault, and just wants them to focus on being together.

Despite So wanting him to stay close, Grand General Park formally asks to be allowed to retire peacefully to his hometown. He can’t help but be reminded of his daughter every time he looks at So, though he doesn’t seem to blame him for it—he only wishes that So become a good and wise king in his absence.

So tells Su about General Park leaving, before asking her if she’s curious to know whose name was written in the late king’s final decree. Does she think he stole the throne? Su says she couldn’t be any less curious about whose name was there, but So reveals that there wasn’t a name written at all.

Knowing that a blank space would leave the throne open to more fighting and confusion, he ripped it up, which Su commends him for. But then he grows more introspective as he notes how alone he really is—General Park is gone, Baek-ah sees him only as a king now, Jung sees him as a murderer, and his own mother considers him a thief.

“You were right,” he says, tears welling in his eyes. “The throne is frightening and lonely.” As one tear spills down, Su comforts him by telling him that he still has her, and comes to rest her head on his shoulder. “I will not leave you.”

Chae-ryung tells Su that she’ll be among the court ladies released from service now that there’s a new king, though she makes it clear that she doesn’t actually want to leave. She pleads for Su to ask the king to allow her to stay in Damiwon, which is later revealed to be part of ninth prince Won’s plan.

Won clearly wants her to stay in Damiwon as his spy, but Chae-ryung wonders if they shouldn’t use this opportunity (of her being freed) for them to just be together. But Won couldn’t be less interested in Chae-ryung as a free woman, and needs Chae-ryung the spy.

It’s made to seem as if they’re being spied upon themselves, though we don’t see who it is. The quick cut to So looking smug might tell us something, even as he faces off against fourteenth prince Jung and family members from his mother’s side.

They refuse to pledge loyalty to him, and Jung declares that they’ll find out what was really on the late king’s decree before they all leave as a group. Astronomer Choi warns So that it’ll be dangerous to leave the Chungju clan against him, which he can fix by either showing them the decree, or by getting even more powerful families on his side.

But all So can think about is that his mother refuses to acknowledge him as a son to the end. Aw.

Now that Su’s been moved to the king’s quarters, she and Woo-hee prepare food for him as a gift. Woo-hee tries to vaguely ask if actions have consequences—say, if she were to wrong someone else for her own happiness. Would she be forgiven?

Su says that she shouldn’t hurt others just so she can survive, but she wants to believe that the universe would be kinder to the two of them, who’ve had their share of suffering. “Even if we were selfish at times, we’ll be able to be forgiven. I plan on believing that,” she adds.

That night, Su encounters Wook outside, and he has the gall to be upset that she went to So in the end. “Now you are the king’s woman. How am I to accept that?” he asks stoically. Su simply replies that So was honest with her about his greed to have both her and the throne.

“Why is it that you insisted I could not become king? In your eyes, was I not enough to become king?” he asks. She insists it wasn’t like that, explaining that So was born under the star of a king. “It is not your fault,” she adds. “It is only nature taking its course, and it is fate.” So… it’s fate, and it’s fate?

Wook’s offended that she made her decision off what she believes to be fate. He broods in his library later while looking at the bracelet he once gave Su, and flashes back to their fond memories together. Then he shatters the jade pendant on the bracelet.

When Yeonhwa walks in, he tells her that he’ll help her become queen. “No one can have everything. Isn’t that only fair?” Ohh, he just wants revenge on Su. That’s cold.

So writes the verse of the poem Su so loved over and over again, though she doesn’t tell him the reason why she needs so many copies. They act like a normal couple with normal problems, with So smiling widely. But it’s that smile that unsettles Su, and she asks if anything happened to him today.

He denies it, and half-jokingly tells her not to try to know everything about him: “If you keep doing that when we’re not even married, I’ll want to run away.” She pouts that it’s because she spends all day waiting for him, so she’d rather spend her days in Damiwon being productive, at the very least.

She picks that time to bring up Chae-ryung’s plight, and So readily agrees to whatever she asks. When she says that she’d be lonely without Chae-ryung, So tells her that she won’t have to worry about that for long—not if they’re going to have children, anyway.

With a grin, So tells her that she’ll be visited by a doctor soon so she can start taking care of her health for their future children, though Su blusters that they aren’t even married yet. So blinks as though the idea hadn’t quite occurred to him, but he’s more than open to it: “Marriage? We can get married. When should we? Let’s do it when you want to.”

His overeagerness is adorable, but Su complains that the proposal isn’t impressive enough. Hadn’t he planned on proposing to her at the prayer stones? He jokes that he’ll have to come up with a satisfying proposal in order to marry her then, adding that it’s tougher to deal with her than it is to rule a country.

As promised, the royal doctor comes calling, and concludes that Su’s knee may make her unable to walk someday (from being tortured). But there’s a bigger problem in that she has heart palpitations, which has him claiming that all the frustration she’s had in life has caused an illness in both her heart and body.

“At this point,” the doctor says, “I cannot guarantee how long you will live.” (What.) Su blinks at him before flatly asking him to be honest with her about how long she’ll live.

We find her making her own pile of prayer stones later as she prays to just have ten more years, though she knows that she’s asking for a lot. “I want to be with him a little longer,” she all but whispers.

Jung and his sideburns come upon Su and her stones, causing him to wonder if she’s praying for So to live a long life as king. She instead replies that she’s praying for Jung to be her friend again, but he throws back that she once said she wouldn’t take anyone’s side—and then she took So’s.

Su reminds him of what a horrible king Jeongjong was, claiming that So ascending the throne was only natural order. Jung agrees with her there, but says that things only started going wrong when So came to the palace. Plus, he still believes So stole the throne.

He’s also worried about her, since he asks if she really thinks she can become queen. She’d just be one of many women for the king, and he doesn’t think that’s the life she wants, not when she told him of her dreams for the future. “Tell me whenever you get tired of this place. If you really want to leave, I have a way out,” he adds.

Wook pays a visit to the new king, claiming to be a representative of his vassals. He doesn’t waste time before listing the demands of said vassals, who want him to give up his hold on both the military and the treasury. In exchange, they’ll do their jobs and actually show up to court.

But So recognizes his requests for what they are, and plainly says no—by cutting him off from the military and the treasury, he’d be cutting off both his wings. “If you do not want to lose your wings,” Wook says, with a dramatic close-up, “how about your heart?”

That’s when he proclaims that his family requests to be joined with So’s in marriage.

Princess Yeonhwa visits Su, who’s less than happy with her company. But Yeonhwa claims that she’ll accept Su as the king’s woman, since she won’t care about who else he’s with. “What I want is honor and recognition. Also, I want my son on the throne,” Yeonhwa says, before adding with a smile, “I will be marrying His Majesty. I will be the king’s wife. I will be queen.”

With a mirthless smile, Wook tells So that he’ll have support from all the powerful families if he marries Yeonhwa, pointing out that So can’t protect that seat alone. “If you want to sit there for a long time, you need them on your side.”

So says that he already promised to marry someone else, and Wook knows he’s talking about Su. “That girl cannot become a queen,” Wook replies, though So shoots back that he always does what he says he’ll do.

Wook doesn’t need to remind him that she scarred her body to get out of marrying King Taejo, but he does. And they both know that a woman with a scar cannot be allowed to marry the king.


This cliffhanger could’ve done more if events weren’t now tainted with the knowledge that Su is going to die—and though we can hope in vain that the doctor was just misinformed, sageuk doctors are never wrong in their diagnoses unless they’re being paid to lie. So sayeth the rules of Sageuk Dramaland.

And that just really puts a huge damper on everything, not necessarily because Su’s a character who’s earned our emotional investment, but because if there was a light at the end of this long, dark tunnel, it’s effectively gone now. Which isn’t to say that a show can’t be good if it doesn’t end happily, since that would be disingenuous to the generally unhappy spirit of Moon Lovers. My main concern is that the final episode will end with Su dying, and while that in and of itself wouldn’t be a terrible ending, the idea that we’ve been forewarned takes the dramatic tension away. Now we’ll just be waiting for the other shoe to drop.

I’m sincerely hoping that the next episode will put all my fears to rest about us spending this show’s last hours with Su being a noble idiot and hiding her illness, so I’ll table those concerns until we have a better idea of how she plans to deal with this news. It’d be nice if she helped us out by giving us even an inkling of how she really feels, but we got no information from her during the scene where she was told she didn’t have long to live, and having her calmly praying for ten more years made it all seem like a nonevent. Even though it is, and I’m sure it’ll be an even bigger one when it matters.

I wish I could tell what it is that made So’s coronation feel like just as much of a nonevent, despite the fact that it all happened so quickly. Having Jeongjong just die of unknown reasons before So barged in was a bit of a letdown, though maybe that’s just because we jumped a year ahead and suddenly So was waiting with an army at the gates to take over the palace. And all Jeongjong could do was blame Su for everything that ever happened, because he was crazy.

It was even more of a missed opportunity to keep Wook completely out of the events leading up to So’s coronation, just because I feel like we could’ve mined a lot more dramatic tension if So had a worthy rival. But since we didn’t, and since So seemed to become king in a vacuum, we instead got that really bizarre scene with So threatening to kill everyone who didn’t agree with his reign. It was an extreme character shift for him, and it would’ve been slightly more palatable had the show at all carried through with it—but instead we continued on as though it never happened.

It’s disappointing that So would devolve into mindless violence the second he got on the throne, because now more than ever is the time for him to play politics, and he’ll find himself outclassed by someone like Wook unless he gets his head in the game. But then I suppose his threats really didn’t matter when he didn’t carry through with them (at least as far as we know), so maybe we can just chalk it up to him learning on the job.

While it was strange to see Bloodthirsty So immediately followed by Puppy So, there was at least some solace to be found in So and Su’s scenes together, though it did feel like we were on borrowed time. I really wish that So could prove everyone wrong and not suffer the same constraints as those who’ve come before him, but things are admittedly looking a little bleak right now. But it’s not the end yet, and if this show has taught us nothing else, it’s that being king turns people into lunatics, and everything can change in an instant. In the meantime, I’ll start collecting prayer stones.


588 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. CS


    • 1.1 aversive

      This pretty much sums up the entire moon lovers viewing experience.

      • 1.1.1 4drama

        +1 I don’t know what To feel for this show.

      • 1.1.2 darcyM

        Punctuated with plenty of “Lee Jun-ki is sooooo pretty”, and “Wow, look at his jawline.”

        • aversive

          Along with, damn his eyeliner game is strong.

        • pogo

          Hey, at least you form actual words while thinking about him.

          I’m just reduced to mentally dropping to the floor because /swoon

          • CS

            It’s like this show can irk me to the core, but like an ex-boyfriend that I know is not good for me, I keep coming back. I’m obsessed with it…but I don’t even know why?! I can’t even pinpoint what it is I like about this show, I’m so drawn to it. It’s like I WANT MORE, but it can be so frustrating. It’s a love/hate relationship. 20 episodes is not enough for everything that happens; I think that’s where they eff’d up on the show…it needs to at least be 24 episodes to fill in all the holes. *siiigh* but what can I do except just watch it and take it all in…..

    • 1.2 LOL


    • 1.3 redfox

      *hands over a bucket to pull over the head to muffle the screams of frustration* you can scream inside this. Anyone else need one?

      • 1.3.1 Money

        Give me a dozen please, else I’ll shout right next to Wook’s ear. Or Yeon Hwa’s. Or Jung’s. Or whoever’s NOT ON THE SOSOO SHIP RIGHT NOW-just… gimme the bucket…

      • 1.3.2 channel

        bucket pls! I usually watch kdrama on my way to the office, normally on the train since everyone is minding their own business anyway but I recently stopped doing this or watching Scarlet in public spaces because of the sheer amount of emotions (from flailing to frustration to flailing) I feel every episode. The drama isn’t perfect but its addicting.

        I think this epi got the edit (not necessarily storytelling) correctly this time. Less unnecessary dead center CU and more MS and LS that relates the spaces of each characters to one another.

        I feel that if Wang So’s edict of killing everyone associated with the late king came after Jung’s withdrawal of support and Wook cornering him into marrying Yeon Hwa, it would make better sense but because his edict came right after his argument with his mother, I’m inclined to think that he’s just lashing out. I thought we’re getting a better king out of him? or maybe sitting in the throne is just driving everyone mad but its too early to go mad.

        If Wang So married Hae Soo before he ascended in the throne will the rule that a girl must not have a scar on his body still applies?

        I feel like we’re really following the ending of C-version and the history? Pls no. I have never wished for a Happy ending for a drama this much.

        • mary

          There’s mercury in the chair.

          That’s why all the Kings go mad.

          • anna

            I think it’s because they marry their own. Incest is wincest.

    • 1.4 Blargh

      Gah indeed, especially when Soo could save everything just by telling Evil Dowager Queen (she ranked up) the real reason why Yo did what he did without revealing too much.

      This what should go down.

      Little Jafar (LJ) :Yes, Soo, we can protect you.
      HS : dkjfasdfjosidh
      EDQ :TELL ME!
      HS: you know what fuq this shit, you want to know the truth!!
      EDQ LJ : Yes finally, something to bring down So.
      HS: Well you in for a surprise, bitches! Yo abdicated because you came barging in to your sick son’s quarter forcing him to abdicate to Little Jafar with Grease sideburn here.

      Yes, Jung, your mother didn’t beg to your brother. She plain force him to tattoo your name to the placard, technically casting him aside as a useless pawn.

      LJ : no…

      EDQ: Shut her up!

      HS : Hells no, the dam is broken lady! Yo told me that he understand So know that he is in his shoes. Now Jung whatchagonnado? You want the truth right? Your mother forced a heart attack on your own brother.

      So came in :WHAT IS….this?

      Soo’s and EDQ WWE unfold


      LJ : ????asdkfjashdfljashd.

      So with that glassy eyes, he just fallen deeper in love with Soo.

      • 1.4.1 Lee

        dude…you should lower your ganja level already. lmao

      • 1.4.2 Miamiloveskdram


    • 1.5 skelly

      Times ten. Times twenty. In spades. With bells on.
      I was clinging to this show because of the amazing job Lee Jun Ki is doing…but when they make his character completely irrational, and continue chopping up scenes and correlations into some sort of Sageuk Cobb Salad, so you can’t follow what is happening and why and what he’s doing and why and is it all because of the Kingly Chair of Doom…
      I’m just going to go take my salad and cry in a corner now.

  2. cali

    of all the dramas i’ve seen in recent memory, this one may have to be the epitome of telling instead of showing. the most annoying effect of this is the useless time skips where all this important stuff happens OFF SCREEN and the effects are only told after the fact. like soo and wook finally (?! it’s been like 17 damn episodes and supposedly years since they stopped loving each other) getting rid of the bracelets. it’s a flashback. wook’s family telling him they won’t support him becoming king? flashback. it takes all the impact out because it happened and now we’re just getting told that it did when wook is all mopey and dumb in the dark of his room after the fact.

    AND THEN. AND THEN THIS SHOW has the gall to just have random ass exposition fairies for every character. chae ryung is now close to prince what’s his butt? I NEED RECEIPTS. soo stopped being HEAD court lady so she could be so’s side-ho? again, i need receipts. and on that note, she went from water slave to head court lady and no one bothered to show or explain how? she just did? god. finally, king yariru mcpsychopath went batshit and became super religious and we weren’t around to see the glorious karma of him literally going nuts over the throne? i don’t believe any of it for a second because I DIDN’T SEE ANY OF IT. i was just told after the fact after some ineffective ass time slips where a bunch of stuff happens and we don’t get to experience it with the characters.

    and then we just have stuff that apparently was a thing but we have to now constantly reminded of it because it was never apparent and now there needs to be a story with the princes that haven’t been offed in various ways. like jung having a crush on soo and reseting so for it? what the hell when did that happen? the whole energy of the show was wasted on eun having the puppy noona crush. jung was ass far away doing whatever the hell he was doing for years.

    it boggles my mind that this show was fully pre produced and finished up filming months ago. what the hell did the production team do until now? were they just in a catatonic state because of all the pretty? did so kill them all so we’re stuck with whatever the hell some other crew found and just put together like a kindergarten play?

    on a final less critical note, every time i think of king so i wonder why he doesn’t have the “소” mustache like all of his successors got glued on by the makeup team. come on, show. if you’re gonna be the bastard child of blade and petal with doctor jin, at least give so a cow mustache so i can pretend i’m watching the greatest love again.

    • 2.1 RedRosette

      Well said!

      • 2.1.1 fuzee

        Thank you . U summed up everything at one go

    • 2.2 Del

      +1 Couldn’t agree more.

      This has been my concerned when they went all draggy with Haesoo-Wook saga until episode 12 and I was literally waiting for Taejo to die because there were Moo and Yo waiting in line. Bad drama pacing.

      And this episode is truly horrible no matter how much I love this drama and Lee Jun Ki. And I could not even believe that they spent 6 months filming this crap. The production value pretty much exhausted in this episode – ugly setting (the short walk to the throne), ugly costumes, ugly wig including the one worn by Jun Ki, terrible make up and everyone minus Yeon Hwa looked so washed out.

      It’s a let down. At this juncture I am just seriously waiting to see what kind of crazy they are going to pull off for the last 3 episodes.

      • 2.2.1 Cali

        RIGHT? I don’t know how or where all that budget or pre production went. Coming out like a whack ass live shoot mess when they had MONTHS to prepare?!

        • darcyM

          Probably no one is used to pre-production and they don’t know how to deal with all the extra time, so they just reverted to live-shoot mentality and came up with this work of art.

        • Yoyo

          The bulk of the budget went to Jung’s wig.

          • transient

            Now that you mentioned budget, can anyone tell me why the princes are wearing sheer black cloth over their robes? Is it a way to cut costume cost?

          • Go HoHo

            don’t forget mention also his SIDE BURNS! haha

          • Yoyo

            The sideburns were an add-on, not to mention customized! Damn Jung got all the “premium quality” stuff!

          • Go HoHo

            @Yoyo- While on the other side, the princes got dark clothes and no BEARD at all hahaha. Now waiting for Jung’s beard to complete his goryeo style transformation. So FAB! lol

        • transient

          The bulk of the money went to paying the actors, especially the full set princes. I am sure LJK get paid the most, and deserved every penny of it for his great effort in acting.

          • Gayeon

            I presume the sheer black fabric over the prince’s original robes are to differentiate between the King’s brothers (Grand Princes) and his sons (Princes). The act of doing so was adopted when Moo first became King.

          • transient


            Thank you for the explanation.

      • 2.2.2 Ira

        Gosh, I am so with you about the dragging of wook-soo storyline. It is weird how So-soo’s romance was supposed to be the epic and true one, but the story painstakingly developed wook-soo while the true romance happened mostly begind the scene. So and soo are cute together (tho not always) but I felt this romance is not earned. For a show with romance as one of its selling point, None of the romance in this drama works for me. Heck, sometimes I even root for Yeonhwa despite hating the incest dimension of this drama, but at least their dynamic is more insteresting to me, not in a romantic way but in a messed up fascinating way.

        • darcyM

          And to me, the Wook-Su love line feels like a completely different drama. What a waste of screen time, I’d rather have watched more of Su and So being buddies like in the early episodes. And being cutely in love, of course.

      • 2.2.3 Del

        Wow. I could not believe my typo. Concern became concerned.

      • 2.2.4 Blargh

        Well, they went draggy with Wook-soo to pay homage to the original story.

        Just like everyone in the drama said “you can’t be greedy and wanting it all.” Well the writer and PD nim does that. They are trying to be different from the original by putting different motivation and backstory for 4th prince but still stuffing the original romance into the story. In the original 4th prince just plain ambitious. No “rejected child” scenario. And for the first bulk of the story it was only about Wook-Soo romance, no inkling whatsoever on So.

    • 2.3 omiki

      20 episodes are too short to flesh out the events. Maybe 24 would have worked better.

      • 2.3.1 Ira

        That’s no excuse for the mess we’re in tho. They knew that they have only 20 episodes story to tell since the very beginning. Instead of streamlining the story, the production has this tendency to focus for too long on things that can be cut to provide better exposition of the main storyline. Sigh…what a waste of LJK….

        • Anita

          THIS!!!!! There is no excuse as to why Moon Lovers is a hot mess. The writer, director, and editing team had months to fix whatever issues this drama had during pre/post production.

          • Blargh

            Also one more thing. LJG should put everyone that is younger than him in the crash course of acting. If anyone see the BTS of Eun’s death, LJG oppa was pretty much directing Baekhyun, thus the episode had become one of the best in the bunch.

            I think the reason also why Haneul is better acting wise here is because he asked LJG for lotsa help. I know he immediately ask for LJG number after he got the part and contacted his hyung for direction and help. He looked up to LJG so much.

            in BTS also we see how dim UI’s light compared to LJG, she was so embroiled in the scene that I think she was thinking way too much when the camera was rolling. Very different when compared to her drama the Producer with Soo Hyun.

            I’ll pay millions to watch LJG and Kim Soo Hyun in a drama, or even movie together. The screen would exploded in charisma.

    • 2.4 Ace in the Trap

      LOL! I’m not even watching this show, and just occasionally scroll through the recaps, screencaps, and comments. “bastard child of blade and petal with doctor jin”, indeed. 🙂

      • 2.4.1 Sam

        i’m curious about that bastard” thing with Dr Jin. Is that a drama?

        • jai

          yes.. Dr Jin is a drama..you check out the recaps are gems..the drama no

        • Ace in the Trap

          I also didn’t watch those 2 dramas mentioned, but I kinda get what cali’s trying to say. I think MLSHR falls into mediocre remake territory (like Cantabile maybe?). I remember blade and petal being (in)famous for its pretentious directing, while Dr. Jin was a terrible terrible remake with terrible PD and terrible acting but with awesome recaps and comments.

          • Midori

            Cantible remake is way better than Scarlet Heart. This is just a hot mess! Cannot believe how much they messed this up. Even the Chinese knockoff Jade Palace is way better than the Korean remake.

        • Reba Wechoki

          You do not want to watch Dr. Jin I assure you save yourself the misery and just read the recaps

        • Kiara

          Best unintentional comedy ever.

    • 2.5 jesci

      I loved loved loved your comment. It is very nice to read some of your lines…. (chae ryung is now close to prince what’s his butt? I NEED RECEIPTS. )…. I was laughing out loud for quite some time….

      • 2.5.1 EZ

        I am assuming they are in cohoots with China ( in return of that whole nuclear deal situation and banning of SK stuff)…

        Its a give and take deal..

        We will create more eyeballs for your drama and literature, you let our specially made for China drama air without difficulty..

        End result:
        Dear International Audience,
        Please watch Bu Bu Xing Xing to fill in the gaps. We will not cover the basics!

        With love,
        SH:R PD team

    • 2.6 Evelyn

      This is abolutely hilarious! Yet so spot-on. I continue to be super disappointed in moon lovers, and this episode was kinda the straw that broke the camel’s back. I’m really turned off by how all the characters have been written at this point, am just watching to see how it ends. Sigh. The things it could have been

      1. The timeslips. Like you I really dislike how we are told something happened BTS but was never shown any proper development. all those example you mentioned above, it’s SO jarring. This is the first drama i’ve watched where there have been more than 3(?) time slips. what on earth

      2. and the characters…woohee. what is she still doing on screen? And how come nobody has sniffed out the fact that she’s a traitor? Also, she’s a terrible actress and I hope she doesnt appear in anything I want to watch in future.

      3. Chaeryung. same as woohee, why hasnt anybody gotten an inkling in all those years that this girl has been working with prince won all the while?

      4. Wook. Sigh. The things he could have been. When they set him up as So’s opponent I thought he’d be a formidable one. But nope, he’s barely gotten a few lines in each episode and gosh – I was confused by his conversation with Su. “You chose So?” – yes, boy duh? Wasn’t that obvious already years back? And he’s got the crappiest luck in the palace, I’m kinda surprised he hasn’t killed himself by now.

      5. Queen SMSS – no words. just, what’s wrong with you, woman?

      6. Haesoo. This woman has gone through so many changes and timeslips that I’ve completely disengaged from her character. Also – what’s with the sudden death announcement from the doctor??

      6. Jung. omgosh. Massive facepalm. One of my least fav princes. Shame – cause 14th prince was my fav in the chinese version and he had a much more compelling character there. Here Jung is like…dude, where are your brains? One moment he’s crushing all over Su (which the show didn’t bother to flesh out in earlier episodes) and the next moment he’s pissed at her for siding with So. Like, duh? Come on. Why would Su choose you, you’ve never been there for her.

      This drama has become a complete trainwreck and I’m just sitting here waiting to see how it all comes to an end.

      Lastly, “Jung and his sideburns come upon Su and her stones” cracked me up so much!

      • 2.6.1 Ira

        I lol-ed so hard at Jung’s sideburn comment too. Jisoo should stay the hell away from sageuk. I love the boy, but watching him in this drama is almost painfully embarassing.

        • Gem

          14th is my favorite in C version, he comes even before 4th. But Jung here is the least likable prince. Still finding ways to blame So for it all. Like mother, like Son. As for, Ji Soo, I will forever be grateful to drama Gods for giving me Fantastic while Moonlovers is on air. Thanks to that my love for Ji Soo is intact and also thanks to team Fantastic for being so considerate to him and adjusting the storyline to let him be a part of the show despite the setbacks.

          • Evelyn

            Same! 14th prince >>>>> any other prince in the C-version for me. I loved how he was so loyal to Ruoxi til her death, despite knowing that she would never love him the way he loved her.

            I really dislike how the writer has chosen to write up the 14th prince’s character here. It’s like he has almost no purpose to the show. He’s either always reacting or doing nothing in the background. And now, add to the fact that he is blaming So for everything despite knowing who the real culprits are. He even had the nerve to get pissed with Su for siding for So. Are you for real, dude?

            Yes thank the Gods for Fantastic! But was it good though? I watched for Jisoo til episode 4/5 but dropped it. Was really happy he came back and that the production adjusted things for him but I actually wished they’d have just written out his character and he could have taken the time off to rest. I don’t know how tiring/painful it is to have a bone surgery (!!) and still having to carry on filming and walking around on a crutch. =/

          • Gem

            I think he didn’t or his agency did not want him to be written out so the drama execs didn’t write him out and kept him. I actually can’t imagine anybody else but Ji Soo in fantastic. It was good, it was worth it. I hope you give it a try again. It made for some endearing moments later and definitely helped to forget Jung.

          • Evelyn

            I think so. I mean, i can understand why someone at his stage in his career would not want to pass up on roles. Besides, Korean entertainment working culture is brutal and logically, I dont think people there might have thought nicely of him if he asked to be written out to take time off.

            I read the recaps here and it seemed like the last few episodes were good. Especially loved the fact that the drama showcased strong female friendships, always love those. Might give it a shot again when i have the time, thanks 🙂

        • Evelyn

          He’s really gotten the worst out of the all the princes when it comes to hair – facial and otherwise. I know the drama had to make him look manly, now that he’s a grand general and all. But that doesn’t mean horrendous hair and ridiculous sideburns? lol.

          Sigh. I wrote something similar below; am a big jisoo fan but he really needs to give Sageuk a rest. Just stick to modern dramas. He comes across pretty stiff in general here. Also, i mentioned his speech, there’s something very unnatural and stilted about the way he delivers his dialogue. i dont know why though

          • Blargh

            Well….he’s not smart enough. He’s like Jung but in a better family. His mom baby him too much that he could not read people’s steps. I understand if he entered the palace in older age but he was born and breed (minus several years in exile), dude gotta grew balls and brain earlier. tsk tsk tsk.

            You have so much potential Wook, so much…he is bratty in a way.

      • 2.6.2 Ijs

        Yeah, seriously Wook keeps getting screwed. If his sister didn’t mess up his life I honestly think he’d be happy with Soo now, and he’d still be a good guy.

      • 2.6.3 Gayeon

        Your comment on Wook is GOLD. With all the talk about him wanting to be the traitor who will execute a traitor to be the true hero, I thought he’d have at least some game up his sleeves but gathering the ministers for a petty protest… just really? Is that the best you can do?

        Isn’t his household supposed to be powerful enough to the point they can push for Yeon-Hwa (Ugh) to be queen? Can’t he at least try to plan a revolt with that power?

        Whatever he’s been doing for the past few years, a suicide would’ve been more productive of him, smh.

      • 2.6.4 TJ

        If you watched the Chinese version like you claim then you must realize the Korean version is still light years better. In the Chinese version I could never figure out why she liked the 4th prince in the first place. If you remember correctly there were HUGE time slips in that version with Ruoxi working for the king for 8 years, then in the laundry for several more. Once she gets told she’s only got 10 years left she’d already been there upwards of 15 years at least. The Korean version just has a habit of announcing these time slips. 8th Prince wasn’t gorgeous and full of bitterness like our Wook either, instead he became a depressed wreck when he was in exile. Until he was given another opportunity to influence what was happening in the throne room. Admittedly 14th Prince had a huge part in that drama. In this drama he’s just an excuse for Ji Soo to poke out his bottom lip a lot. lol I don’t know what everyone sees in him really.

        • Evelyn

          “Watched the chinese version like i claim”? It’s not a mere claim, i did watch it.

          “I must realize the korean one is light years better”? Nope i prefer the chinese version. Good for you if you like the Korean one.

          For all the flaws in the C-version (i didnt like the cinematography or the actors that much), it still had a better plot and a better written Ruoxi/haesoo. Also, their timeslips never ever felt jarring to me cause things were properly fleshed out. Here, the timeslips are hella irritating and everything is rushed and makes zero sense. And like you pointed out, all the princes were well-written in some way. 8th had depth, and 14th had a compelling storyline. cant say the same of the k-version – by MILES.

    • 2.7 Kiara

      I wish you were wrong cali. This is the most frustrating in all of Jun-ki’s dramas because they had the time, money, a lot of materials etc to make this show epic but they screw it up.
      This production who was probably headline by this director is mostly responsible for this mess.

      • 2.7.1 Kiara


    • 2.8 FunnyBunny

      The glue on cow mustache! *crying laughing*
      I know how serious your whole comment was. It really does sum up all the problems Moon Lovers suffers under.
      But oh my god I can’t get over the cow mustache thing! 😂

    • 2.9 kz

      I totally get you. This is a little hard to say, because I’ve been watching this series from the first episode, but I think I understand why the ratings are low.

      I might be stepping on a lot of toes here, but I dare say the story –disjointed as it is, is the culprit. Everything moves fast without giving the audience TIME to process or even sift through the events, and help us understand the backstory. So much time warp, so much moving forward and leaving very important details behind.

      It’s the writing, the directing, and *gulp*, even the chemistry. I watched this episode both in raw and subs. The raw subs on IG came out with the complete version, while the subs had fast-forwarded/edited scenes. Still, there was very little difference it made to me when I watched it. I just felt, hmm…indifferent? Like when one watches just to complete the series but isn’t as emotionally invested as when you first were when it started.

      I mean, I remember being so excited when episode 1 came out and 2,3,4 and so on, especially that ONE big episode almost everyone at DF agreed was the best, when the King’s lady love was killed. (was it 12?, i forget?) That was just the episode we need. It moved at the right pace. Attacked emotions and scenes with the right energy. It had good storytelling.

      Now, everything just seems disjointed. I agree. Hae soo moved from water maid to highest court lady without so much of a background as to how this happened. I realized that the way the two previous kings have died (Moo and Yo) –was done with little fanfare. It’s like everyone’s just waiting to sit on the throne and get over it. Whereas, when King Taejo was about to die, there was such ruckus. It’s like the kingdom was left to puppies, the little players. And even the way the story unfolds, we’re not given any GRAND feeling about the passing of one king to another. It just moves SO ridiculously fast.

      Again, the Wook-So story. I’ve said it before. I believe they have amazing (and greater) chemistry than Wang So-Soo. The ship have sunk many episodes ago, yet Wook still harbors all these things (and I totally get that), but it just feels…all over the place. I wish there were previous interactions with them when there were regrets and whatnot, but it’s like, they said they moved and and so they did. I don’t know if you get where I’m coming from, but I totally understand the comment where I’m replying. They say it as a fact and so it happens. but we know this only AFTER.

      Also, So’s scar was such a point of contention, and he becomes king now. Is the scar no longer any relevant? I supposed not. Yet they make a fuss about the scar on Soo (maybe totally different rules for women of the day who had to be perfectly beautiful).

      I want to finish this series but I feel, as a viewer, quite let down by the bad editing and bad storytelling. If it was pre-produced, it’s an even heavier fault, I suppose.

      • 2.9.1 pogo

        The thing about chemistry is that it’s at least partially dependent on writing.

        Wook/Su had chemistry hot enough to scorch the house, but after the story sent Su to the Damiwon and turned them into cutesy lovebirds who sit around in caves for a first date, I just wasn’t feeling them anymore because the story undercut the very thing that made them so compelling to watch – their mutual attraction. While with So, it was a steadier kind of chemistry rooted in friendship and mutual understanding and a comfort level that could grow into something else. But then the time jumps did everything they could to dissipate that, by putting physical distance between So and Su for years on end and treating their not-yet-realised relationship like it was in stasis. It’s really frustrating.

      • 2.9.2 Gem

        I get you @kz because indifference is exactly what I feel right now when I watch the show. “Oh, so there they are but they are just there all on a sudden, doing that because they need to and they don’t have any more time so that’s why” is what I feel. I am stepping on a lot of toes but So-Su is the least organic couple for me in my k-drama viewing experience. The burning passion that I was promised, I think somebody poured cold water on it in more than one occasions and doused that fire. Now, they claim to have a bright warm fire but all I feel is a cold indifference. I don’t feel it.
        There is this pattern in this show. I remember during the initial episodes with all the ridiculous plot lines and fan service and acting, there was a spark between So-Su just as much as Wook-Su. But the moment both couples got together, things went downhill. I don’t know what to blame for that, I just don’t feel I need to analyze this show anymore. It is what it is and it is not getting any better.

      • 2.9.3 Azaniz

        Welll said. All about the editing error… such a loss.

    • 2.10 JC

      Moon Lovers: Chae Yun and Won are a thing now.
      Kdrama auditor: I need proof of that. Do you have any receipts of dates they went on, perhaps a Goryeo amusement park?
      ML: no.
      KA: Denied. Next.
      ML: Su gets demoted then promoted then reassigned.
      KA: Pay stubs? Annual employment reviews?
      ML: no.
      KA: Possible embezzlement of viewer emotions. Denied.
      ML: Can’t you just loosen up a little? Come on, it’s called suspension of belief. You allowed a time-travel portal to a royal jimjilbang.
      KA: You had receipts for that. Receipts, or it didn’t happen. You are up to 6 back episodes and 20 re-edits.

      • 2.10.1 PakalanaPikake


        LMAO at “Kdrama Auditor.” 😉

        Possible embezzlement of viewer emotions.


        More like “highjacking of viewer emotions” that rates 25 years-to-life in Leavenworth.

        Receipts! I’m having flashbacks to all the expense reports I ever had to ride herd on as a secretary. 😉

      • 2.10.2 nmaxx

        lmao this is amazing

      • 2.10.3 maryann

        This convo reminds me of this office email today inquiring why we had to buy ballpens…uhm…apparently, they were all used up?

    • 2.11 Ck1Oz

      At least you’re still watching. It’s even frustrating reading the recaps. I was all prepared to swoon over the epic love story. But now, bed scene or not- don’t want to raise my blood pressure to watch it.

    • 2.12 Nicjumma

      Lol! RECEIPTS!
      And I was wondering about that mustache thing myself. Perhaps they didn’t give LJG one because they knew that I was fresh out of bibs to catch all of that drooling I would be doing. LOL! I do like a little facial hair on a man, and to have some on LJG…MY LORD!
      Every now and then I see that 5 o’clock shadow creeping in on him, and I try to imagine that pretty face with one. Woo! (fanning self) , as if he wasn’t sexy enough already! :p

    • 2.13 Quinze

      OMG you win for best comment of this drama. I love it lol. 100% agreed. I don’t even need to watch the drama for the story- just the Su-So scenes.

      Honestly, HeadsNo2 must feel like the drama basically recaps itself. At least that makes her job easier.

      Also Del makes a good additional point about dragging us through the nonplots at the beginning only to speed through the meat of the show. Why we had to be told Su somehow shifted her feelings to undying love instead of SEEING it is beyond me. Same goes for how she became head court lady. So much lazyness in the storytelling.

      Man I feel for LJK. The man is both the most gorgeous person in this drama and also the best actor (considering everyone else got sidelined to the shadows only to be pulled out when remembered). He’s so wasted here.Feel like I should go rewatch Arang and the Magistrate instead.

      • 2.13.1 Zie

        I rewatch scholar who walks the night and arang. Much better storyline than moonlover.

        • Gayeon

          Scholar would’ve been a better drama if not for the cringey special effects 😂. I agree though, those two were interesting dramas.

    • 2.14 Kwinchikochi

      Gosh,it’s like you just displayed all my pent up frustrations about this drama with words
      *wipes away a tear*

      • 2.14.1 Sunshower

        Yep there you’ve said it all. And by the way doc says living with pent up frustration will lead to heart palpitations and shorten your life span.

        • PakalanaPikake

          If what Goryeo Marcus Welby told Hae-Su is true, then OUR collective geese are cooked. I smell Beanie flambé…

    • 2.15 pogo

      The editing team for this one really were a pack of drunk monkeys. I mean, I still can’t believe this is what they did with a PRE-PRODUCED DRAMA, wtf.

      am I the only one here who doesn’t think Jung’s crush on Su came out of nowhere? He’s always had a very different vibe with her from the one she has with Baek-ah (who is actually her platonic friend), like a wee noona crush forming there was quite believable pretty much from Day 1 so I wasn’t too surprised when he started making eyes at her in the Damiwon.

      • 2.15.1 Go HoHo

        @pogo- Same!! I knew from the start that Jung’s crush situation on Hae Soo. More like the production team were all in such a hurry in establishing the story per episode.

      • 2.15.2 PakalanaPikake

        Lordy, why does the beginning of this drama feel like it happened 432 years ago?

        IIRC, Hae-Su was instrumental in saving Jung from retribution in the bamboo forest… and encouraged him in his martial arts. He had a schoolboy crush on her despite So’s “my person” declaration.

        After years patrolling the border, and her not being in an obvious relationship with So who was also out in the field for years at a time, it didn’t surprise me that Jung might want to toss his hat in the ring when he finally returned to the mothership…

      • 2.15.3 visitor

        Same, pogo! How I wish they’d replaced Eun with Jung in the noona romance corner…

    • 2.16 Novijka1

      Sad but true. This show is having so much flaws that I’m wondering what are we doing here … still I’m in 🙂 and afraid to watch upcoming episodes…

    • 2.17 Sojuboy

      Universal should sue this director for embezzlement.

    • 2.18 Yo'sEyeliner

      Exactly. I give up already.

    • 2.19 MikoDee


      This show “Telling instead of showing”… absolutely correct on that. I’m more frustrated than interested at this point. 3 more episodes left and so many loose ends. And did we really need So to look like a unhinging maniac? No, we didn’t. We never asked for it. I really thought Su going to the past would make some difference but little has changed about history. Is that the point of the show; that nothing changes about history no matter how much we try to manipulate it?

    • 2.20 Toophat

      the cow mustache is probably coming in the last 2 episodes.. and no, you probably won’t get any receipts for that either unfortunately

    • 2.21 ashablue

      and tbh, what happened to SU who is from the modern age?? That arc of the story has completely disappeared and SU acts like she was born and raised Goreyo instead of 21st Century Seoul.

      • 2.21.1 Blargh

        Well, after reevaluating Soo’s scene in 21st century, I came into conclusion.

        Soo is a submission type when it comes to those that she familiar with.

        Case in point :

        When she doesn’t know So well nuff yet, she would walk away even when she knew So need encouragement. Compare this with everyone that she came to know later on. She would sacrifice hands and legs (and knees) to go the extra mile. Chae Ryung for example, eventhough CR was Soo Bff, they didn’t meet each other for quite a long time (with getting married to King, become Damiwon’s resident, then water maid) but the thought of CR to even betrayed her never cross her mind (hey lady, she got whipped because of you once, remember? At least a little suspicion? Sheesh).

        Second : She would kick a guy’s ass for indecent perversion, but wouldn’t even smack Jung’s head for being a bimbo that would lead into blood bath (seriously? Naked woman vs siblicide? Where’s your priority woman?).

        Third : Soo said it directly to So, eventhough he’s a prince to never claim her like a thing, but would shut up when EDQ sprouted vitriol and nonsense to So and about So (apparently your fear is greater than your love, shame on you!).

        If this is true to her personality then her relationship with anyone in this particular time would lead to doom no matter what. She would let anyone walk all over her (just like in 21st century when she didn’t confront her own ex BFF — methinks that’s foreshadowing for CR)

        I mean it make sense though, I knew someone who is similar to that. In a way I think Soo could separate herself with a stranger/s but didn’t have the same chemical and neuron connection in her brain with familiars. Too bad we do not have a background in her childhood, perhaps she was a child who being oppress by her parent’s demand so that she couldn’t say no to anyone she’s close with, either they’re enemy or friend or frenemy. Noble idiot to the max.

    • 2.22 Miamiloveskdrama

      You express our rage so well. Who the hell are the editors? Are they new to this line of work? Do they not speak the language? Did it all get preporduced as a 24 episode drama and then some one lost pieces and this is what we get instead? Also please screw the expiration fairy.

    • 2.23 hydesamagirl

      Here, here! I think you have pointed out the even bigger issue. This travesty of a drama, no offense to the lovely Lee Junki, was pre-produced. No excuse but insanity and a 3 year-old’s ability to tell a story can explain the issues with this drama. Nothing seems real and I just hope for pretty Lee Junki scenes. Alas and alack. Acting acting everywhere, and not a story to tell.

  3. E

    Wook, you rat bastard.
    Show, well done.

    • 3.1 aversive

      *dramatic zoom in*

      Why thank you

      • 3.1.1 Kwinchikochi

        The dramatic zoom in was actually hilarious ,I was watching this scene and bam they zoom in ,I was so confused I started laughing ,
        Gosh this episode committed a lot do sins :/

      • 3.1.2 LOL

        Omg that dramatic zoom-in

      • 3.1.3 Kang Maru


        the scene was too serious but Wook’s zoom was so hilarious XD

      • 3.1.4 angieya

        I totally cracked up over that zoom in.
        Somebody definitely watched too many Westerns. Rofl.

    • 3.2 Yoyo

      I’ve talked about this earlier in the groups Hangout room… I might as well bring this up here.

      Amongst the princes of Goryeo, I think Wook is the only one who’s had the preparedness level of a king.

      You see, Mu was physically strong (prior to getting infused with Mercury) but emotionally weak to be a great King. Mu would probably end up being like Jeong’s father in MDBC, had his reign lasted.

      Then we have Yo, who really just acts before he thinks. It would be a tyrannous reign to have someone that barely listens to anyone else’s opinion aside from his own. Yo thinks the kingdom is his playground and that really shows his immaturity and lack of royalty demeanor.

      Let’s talk about Wang So, although recently abdicated to the throne, Wang So clearly has an advantage bringing in the fear factor due to his Wolf-dog reputation and while we’re all aware that he’s got a way with the sword, Wang So clearly comes in short when it comes to his political hold. He doesn’t really have strong alliances and clearly lacks both political knowledge and support. He might presume that all he needs is Hae Su, but love can only take you as far as temporary gratification for these two at least. The bigger picture doesn’t really have Hae Su’s face printed on it, that’s the sad and bitter truth.

      Which brings me back to Wook, I have to admit, Wook pretty much has everything under his belt, a strong and influential family, enough knowledge about Goryeo and the surrounding kingdoms, he knows how to wield both the sword and an arrow with the occasional dagger if need be, Wook certainly stands out when it comes to his diplomatic authority and his political prowess which is a clear representation of the makings of a king. Wook just has the baddest of luck ever! Well, he can blame Hae Su all he wants, Yo was right about one thing, all of this can be circled back to Hae Su, the grim reaper of Goryeo.

      • 3.2.1 Ren

        I completely agree with everything you’ve said.

        Wook: “Why is it that you insisted I could not become king?”
        Hae Soo: “Cause So being King is totes written in the Stars, it’s like fate.”
        Wook: That’s it? *mind implodes*

        • Yoyo

          Wook: “Wait. SO has a Star???

          Hae Soo: “Yes, he does. It’s shining, shimmering, splendid!”

          Wook: “Did Mu and Yo have stars too?”

          Hae Soo: “Of course!”

          Wook: “How does one get a STAR?”

          Hae Soo: “It’s the heavens that decide. It’s fate!”

          Wook: “Do I have a star?”

          Hae Soo: “Ummm..Eh…ummm..”

          Wook: “Tell me!”

          Hae Soo: O_O

          Wook: “Nevermind. I’m buying myself a moon!

          • angieya

            Rofl, well that would at least somehow explain the title ML which is still a mystery to me.

          • Blargh

            Moon lovers is describing how every boys in the neighborhood of Goryeo came out to the yard cuz Soo’s milkshake.

            Moon is the symbolism of the woman and Sun is the King, remember that title Moon embracing the Sun? That’s the shaman lady owning the king’s heart.

      • 3.2.2 Kang Maru

        You nailed it Yoyo!! It all started with Hae Soo. Poor Wook i guess luck wasn’t on his side. Maybe it’s on her sister..

      • 3.2.3 Blargh

        Perhaps he had the greatest level of preparedness, however because he grew brain and balls too late in the game that preparedness is null.

        Yeon Hwa is the best. Empress Manseh Manseh Man Man She (hehehe sorry I just gotta to that)

        She got the look, she got the brain, she got the passion, she got the levelheadedness.

        I have to add on Yo’s. The reason why he’s acting before thinking is probs because he’s been a puppet for too long. His Evil Mother was the one that orchestrated everything so for Yo to be left in his own device would resulted in downfall.

        See the funny thing about WS is that in history he was the one that have all the support, thus he became one of the great king of Goryeo to his common people (no so much to the nobles and rich).

        I think that is what Soo’s role, she is the grim reaper. She needed to do and be who she is so that the history rolled down or up (sideways?) perfectly. If it were to be other sassier girl, WS probably wouldn’t stay in the palace, instead he would life happily with Soo as a common person obscured from the royal family. Or the girl would be his adviser, maybe as smart as YH.

        The thing with Soo is she refused to be the puppetmaster, even when she could orchestrated a better palace life. Soo got no ambition, she would be the person who settle in her life whenever and wherever she is.

  4. Persian Rose

    What should I do with my life when MLSHR finishes??!

    • 4.1 endo

      We have 3 hours left. noooo..

    • 4.2 Cali

      Watch Arang and the Magistrate. Lee Jun Ki in a much better produced show

      • 4.2.1 Del

        I feel bad for him. He shed 15kg for this crap and this is what he got in return.

      • 4.2.2 Persian Rose

        I’ve already watched all LJK dramas and I watched the better one (e.g. 2 weeks and arang) several times. I do agree that MLSHR editing has been such a mess (I think Korean producers in general are not good in pre-production and they somehow lose the consistency and continuity of the storey in editing process), but MLSHR was also very addictive in a way none of other LJK dramas were…I really liked Wang So layered charachter and I believe that it was one of the best LJK’s performance by far.

        • Del

          I don’t necessarily like the character of Wang So. I like him in the beginning but his character kind of fell flat after the Batman episode. May be I should not totally blame the writing of his character. I believe the editing and drama pacing that totally spoil his characterization. I believe they shot a lot for us to understand him better, to find him all glorious but the editing sucks and we are stuck with this version. The reason why we are so invested with Wang So is because of Lee Jun Ki. He worked some magic out of crap. I could not agree more that this by far has been his best performance. Idk, if it is some other actor, could I actually love Wang So this much? I don’t think so. The production team should get on their knees and thank him because he is the drawing force that people like us keep coming back for more.

        • Baek

          Actually i thought pre-production should be easier, as in easier to coordinate and stuff? Since u get all 100% filming done beforehand.. unless they dont know the story well or missed out certain crucial parts which could be made better or to be included in.. If not its pretty much like u got all ur ingredients ready just for the big day..

          Whereas those filming and broadcasting in progress concurrently, true u could always take in response and react according to the audience liking and make real time adjustment to the flow of their liking.. But doesnt that requires even more consistency, effort and coordination especially those drama where u started filming when the script isnt even fully produced or changed last minute.. and u are fighting against time which is of great essence..

          maybe the luxury of time is the failure for scarlet heart.. they got so much more material and its a pity the show heading towards the other way..

      • 4.2.3 aversive

        I do think that this story is crap at times, it’s like fanfiction on TV but Lee Jun Ki’s acting is flawless. He did a much better job here than any others because even if Moon Lovers got everything wrong they didn’t get Wang so’s character development, storyline or execution wrong in fact it’s done better than most shows.

        Unfortunately sometimes it’s not enough. But still it’s enough to keep us coming ever week and promising not to come back again.

      • 4.2.4 gabobobobo

        Ditto. Arang is a far better drama. Although I love how intense Lee Jun Ki in this show, I wish him better luck next time.

      • 4.2.5 pogo

        @Cali – yeah, Arang is much better. But Scarlet Heart is bizarrely addictive, even if I’m always going to be mad at the production for making Jun-ki shed 30 pounds and then not being worthy of the effort he put in.

      • 4.2.6 Quinze

        Yeah I wanted to see intense guy-lined LJK acting his socks off as this bad ass who outsmarts his brothers in the race for the throne. What we got was something that fell incredibly short. I love the guy but I feel like that raw passion is completely fizzled out of him. Plus his brothers just dropped like flies after their lifespan was up.
        Now I just watch for the romance….only to see that we might get cheated out of a meaty romance too…

        • Del

          That scene when So gathered his army and drew his sword outside the palace appeared to be more epic in the trailer than actually in the drama. I was so frustrated with how it was played out in last night’s episode.

          And when they compressed this meaty plot in less than 10 episodes, I have already foreseen the disaster. So’s ascension to the throne is nothing glorious. When the writer decided not to allow him to use his brain to outsmart his rivals, she also robbed him from the opportunity to show his wondrous LJK’s swordsplay when he has gathered a large force that ended up rejoicing when Yeon Hwa proposed a peaceful solution. So, it the end, So managed to sit on the throne because of Yeonhwa not out of his own merit. *Headdesk*

          • Quinze

            Hah that last sentence sums it up. It was all yeonhwa!
            Seriously though we haven’t seen So use his sword in forever. Drawing his sword doesn’t count. What’s the point of him being an awesome fighter if we barely see him getting to use it??

          • channel

            If Yeon Hwa happens to become queen, I guess she won it all. She might not have the love of Wang So but she still ended up marrying the guy she’s in love with and still seat in the throne.

            Well played Yeon Hwa! Well played!

    • 4.3 Angela

      I feel your pain Persian Rose…I’m trying to figure out what new addicting drama is next on my list…

    • 4.4 aversive

      See if there is some idiot kid drowning during an eclipse and jump in to save him Ha-Jin style.

      Of course with our lucj

    • 4.5 pogo

      @Persian Rose lol, are you me?

      I know we’ll never get the happy ending for So/Su but I’m still braced for it like a crash or something.

      • 4.5.1 Yoyo

        Lo and behold, the masochistic viewers of MLSHR! We are one, we are united!

        Do you beloved viewers take this program wholeheartedly in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer, come hell or high water, program pre-emption and post production failures, till So/Su’s death do all of us part?

        …we do! Amen!

        • kumoiwa

          @Yoyo have I told you lately that I love you?

          • Yoyo

            @Kumoiwa have I told you lately that I care? (We’re doing that song right? 😛

          • PineappleGongzhu

            Wasn’t there talk of a Google Hangout where we could fangirl and complain about ML:SHR?

            Is it too late to join? 🙂

          • kumoiwa

            Never too late @PineappleGongzhu!!!! We were waiting for ya 😀

            Join us here: https://hangouts.google.com/group/USeXcGDpVGDKRhuy1

      • 4.5.2 persian rose

        I always read your comments and though you are my my soulmate 😋
        LJK has been always captivating in ever charachter but as he shined most in this role as Wang So showed every range of emotions from vulnerablity to possessivity obsessesion, intensity, rage,… As much as MLSHR is flawed, LJK as Wang So is flawless and super captivatong

        • persian rose

          Sorry for too many typos (blame my long nails) 😰

    • 4.6 Sojuboy

      This show is much better 😛


  5. RedRosette

    What is going with this drama? Has anyone watched both versions? The international version was such a mess. Why is Wook now a minor character? Why doesn’t anyone suspect Chaeryung? She’s being so obviously shifty! So many questions…Got so upset that we ranted about it.

    • 5.1 kyuforever

      i thought since MDBTC was over, the competitor for my affections towards ML was gone and then i saw the international version… atrocious.. thank god i read the recap.. they have managed to just show some scenes and have cut off all the important dialogues which tell us what the characters actually feel in the international version!!! at this rate , i might end up dropping it and just reading recaps… i feel so cheated!

      • 5.1.1 Baek

        Seems like this show really need watch both version..

        This show is so ruined in the hands of the production and editing team..

      • 5.1.2 Zoë

        I already did it long time ago. Stop watching it and read the recaps at dramabeans site. I feel so much better than before.

        • anh-ria

          I know right? I also gave up somewhere around ep 12 I was relly angry with how wasteful the drama was towards the cast and us viewers. Reading he recaps saves me from being annoyed with the show and I can just enjoy it and actually laugh at the comments and ideas.
          Thank you! If it hadn’t been for you dramabeans and lovely beanies I would have to start measuring my blood pressure for fear of ending up at the hospital, because I found all of you I can only be afraid of choking to death on laughter. Much preferable if you ask me, so from the bpttom of my heart Thank you!

    • 5.2 Azaniz

      I watched the raw then the International version finally the SBS version. what a crazy thing to do just to know which part are they edited out…

  6. aversive

    So we are all screwed. Not only is the hope for a happy ending fast vanishing but the preview for ep 18 seems like it’s probably going to kill us before we can even reach the last two episodes.

    Stupid Chae Ryung, stupid heart disease, stupid Jung.

    I know we were supposed to feel bad for Yo but I didn’t. He may have done it for his mother’s love but everytime I remember Eun and Deok racing the paper sails my sympathy just vanishes or even the scene where So was forced to kill his own brother, I think Yo deserved it.

    He deserved far worse and honestly I’d have preferred it if So had killed him. I don’t understand the concept of the kings dropping dead magically only when there is a rebellion. It’s like they’ve held on for that long just to drop dead the moment someone makes a grab for the throne.

    That being said I’m also quite surprised that it was Su that declared So king. I was so proud because that meant she’d finally whole hearted trusted him as well as her love for him to change him to become a better king than cruel Gwangjong.

    But he’s not exactly a better king is he?
    The part where he declares to kill the rebellors i was shocked by the sudden change of character. Then I realised that it’s probably a side that’s only brought out by his mother which always leads him to take drastic action (the temple of monks, this are some examples). But then again we should have seen this coming because Gwangjong eyeliner game was raised several notches. And we all know eyeliner is directly proportional to cruelty/madness in this show.

    I don’t think the scar on her wrist will be a problem or the main cause for the marriage not happening (yeonhwa and Wook get credit for that) but I do like how they connected the scar. Something that had saved her at that point is he thing that has become an obstacle now.

    Now we have the preview of Chae Ryung been beaten up which causes Su to think he’s a monster, etc, etc, I don’t know why but this just seems like a repetition. Its the same thing again and again. Why can’t Su try to understand the reason? I mean really you choose backstabbing Chae Ryung over the guy who took an arrow for you,drank poison for you (this just to name a few) I mean really why do you do this?

    Here are the list of characters I’m sure are getting killed;

    1)Won Hee: No way she got that much screen time for them to have a happy ending. Probably executed by So for spying.

    2)Baek Ha: Pretty sure something related to Won Hee. He’ll also hate So.

    3)Hae Su: yeah definitely. I’m just hoping though at least in this case it will differ from the Chinese version and she dies when she’s with So and not Jung.

    I think Su being in the Queen’s garbs Is her marrying Jung to get away from So. We also have a bts of yeonhwa wearing the bridal clothes so her marriage is fixed too. Well at least someone is getting a happy ending.

    There is also an interesting theory floating around: The kid who Ha-Jin had gone…

    • 6.1 Syuni

      So’s mother has always brought out the BAD in all HER sons. She pushes and pushes and it’s never enough. I don’t know what more this woman wants. Her husband is the king, she’s one powerful ass queen already with three princes – of course neither of them are the crown prince but once one did become king, she continues to push.

      I’ve only seen the international version and not the SBS one yet but I’m hoping Su is running away b/c she does not have much longer to live and wants to spare So the heart ache. Or she can’t cope with the heart break of her man getting married to another woman.

      • 6.1.1 Kz

        LOL: But then again we should have seen this coming because Gwangjong eyeliner game was raised several notches. And we all know eyeliner is directly proportional to cruelty/madness in this show.

        • atz

          Indeed the comment on So’s eyeliner is a gem. One should start a forum on whose guyliners are best/sexiest in dramas, or how we can view a transformation of a man via his guyliner( eyeliner)development over episodes.

          If I were Su and was diagnosed by a doc in Goryeo, I would definitely find a way to go back to 21st century asap( bringing gold coins I have saved up with me) and get a second opinion in the most prestigious hospital in SK.

  7. endo

    I really thought i’m already immune to LJK’s charm and beauty but gosh, how beautiful he was during coronation and that black garb? ahhhh..Lol.

    • 7.1 pogo

      yeah, that first sight of him in his coronation headdress…..I kind of forgot to breathe (again). He’s just so beautiful, it’s unfair to my eyes.

    • 7.2 aversive

      Nobody is immune to LJK effect. It’s a potent disease that can attack you anytime anywhere.

      Side effects include: squealing, breathing problems, drooling and wishing you were in goryeo despite the fact there is no wi-fi, proper hygiene materials or guarantee that you’ll be alive the next day unless of course you’re a healthy mix of stupid and pretty like all Kdrama girl protagonists.

    • 7.3 Welp

      Immune to LJK? Never going to happen lmao

    • 7.4 Ira

      The fact that we’re all still watching this crap is a proof that none of us is immune to his gorgeousness.

      • 7.4.1 Yoyo

        It’s not crap! It’s a creative undertaking of historical Goryeo infused with a romantic twist that breaks the barriers of time that will put both fate and destiny in the hands of a chosen lady in hopes that love will overcome the impossible and triumph over the wicked. A 20 episode show that aims to capture the hearts of its viewers and make them part of this epic journey that transcends into the past and back into the present. We’re bringing in a stellar cast that will give life to these characters, a renowned writer to give us this epic story, the most versatile director in the industry and the most creative editing team in Korea.
        That was what the production teams response.

        Here’s mine:

        Everything above minus the director, editing team and cringe worthy idol casting. Take that out, it’s not entirely crap.

        • Ira

          I love your defense of this drama, lol. True it’s not entirely crap, but thanks to the level of bad decisions made by production team, such a compelling story has become a frankestein version of the original. This show has shown that it can be great which is why how it kept failing to give a coherent storytelling made me so angry of what couldve been.

    • 7.5 Pei

      I thought King supposed to wear white or gold or red?
      But then again black garb suit him the best
      Immune to LJG after this show? not gonna happen! *lol*

      • 7.5.1 kumoiwa

        Black was actually the first colour to be associated with imperial power in China. Qin Shihuang wore black! So it’s fitting that So’s daily robes are black, plus it doesn’t hurt he looks gooooood.

    • 7.6 Del

      He is gorgeous but don’t you guys find him too thin? I mean, he looks painfully skinny. I find him much more breathtakingly stunning in earlier episodes, the much fuller cheeks yet angular enough to look sexy. And his build back then was masculine warrior like. I thought he was a hostage in the beginning before being treated more like prince and eventually become king. Yet it’s a reverse when come to the physical effect. Sigh! I wish I could feed him.

      • 7.6.1 Quinze

        Yup, I like the earlier much larger LJK. More muscular, more fuller. This…I mean I will stare at his face and marvel at how gorgeous he is but…I want a healthier LJK back!

  8. kumoiwa

    Thanks for the recap Heads!

    This episode went by so fast I couldn’t really process everything (shout out to everyone in our chat room, because that was real chaos during our live stream lol). But what I can say is, wow Yo is an A class troll. I hadn’t expected him to be serious when he cornered Su and asked her to choose–but he did force her to make the decision in the end, and Su chose in a manner that has basically sealed her fate as the catalyst of the causal loop in the show. Having her play the active role as actual kingmaker was quite clever on the writer’s part, I have to give her that. Now no one can say Su didn’t cause her own terrible ending.

    So Yo did pass on his throne to So, as history dictated it to be. I sort of like how the show managed to make it happen, by having Yo’s last act be to write his edict like some kind of fill-in-the-blank winning ticket. Because that’s so Yo, doing it as if it were some huge payback for Queen SMSS’ desire to make Jung king. He was also like a frightened young boy in the throes of death, but I don’t pity someone who’s unable to face the gravity of his actions. Yes, Queen SMSS sucked ass as a mother, and yes, he may have just “wanted to survive”, but didn’t Mu and Eun as well? Yo’s inability to say that he’s wrong, even as he knew he was dying, just makes him a really pathetic figure. But it’s okay Yo, I know you’ll be somewhere in hell, and that makes me feel somewhat vindicated on Mu’s behalf. Mad props to Hong Jong-hyun, who killed his role (haha, pun). I’ll miss you on my screen.

    Wook–wow this guy can catch zero breaks. He always has the worst timing ever, from unsuccessfully saving Su, to unsuccessfully usurping Mu’s throne, and unsuccessfully usurping Yo’s throne again. He literally had a headstart and wasn’t even squandering things this time when he ran to get military assistance from Wang Sik-ryeom, but he STILL failed. I don’t know if I should feel sorry for him or not. But we get a better look at how he and Yeon-hwa turned out this way, because damn, Queen Sinjeong was cold. She abandoned her son as quickly as she knew the downlow, and wow she’s a much better strategist than her daughter and son combined. Queen Sinjeong’s penchant for hiding her ambition has really carried over to Wook, and I swore so much when she gave him something new in his arsenal to cause grief for So. In a way she doesn’t really care for Yeon-hwa as well, because she full well knows how it’s like not to be loved by a king and is still bent on making her daughter queen anyway. Because that’s really going to be the best thing for her, huh.

    So/Su: happy things never last for long. Sobs. So looks so much more attractive with his hair up, and I’m happy Su is wearing her beautiful hanboks again, buttttttttt why can’t they be happy for longer? I’ll take all the hand-holding and spooning I can get at this point, because next episode is going to be grueling for them…

    • 8.1 kumoiwa

      Chae-ryung, that little wench. OMG I’ve never wanted to punch anything so hard in my life when she first asked Su to request for her to stay in the palace, and then immediately afterwards ran to Won and asked him to marry her. Girl, he has two wives he can’t even differentiate, and you’re some servant girl with no money–what makes you think he’ll want you? You killed Mu for non-existent love, and not because Won was holding your family captive and under torture? You bitch, give me sweet, loving Mu back! I do wish they’d set up her supposed undying love for Won a little better though, because now it just looks contrived.

      I sobbed a little when General Park said he wanted to leave the palace because all he could see and hear was Soon-deok whenever he was there. Losing your daughter to palace intrigue is too tough of a way to send her off. Be happy, General Park, Soon-deok would want you to.

      Isn’t it interesting how everyone who is on that throne becomes bloodthirstier in the name of the greater good? Or legitimacy, your pick. Even So is susceptible to this change and that in itself is scary.

      • 8.1.1 cherryarrow

        OMG I CAN’T EVEN, Chaeryung annoy the heck out of me. It’s like this girl has an IQ of 10. Does she not know how to think???

        After this episode we can call Wook “Failure Wook”

        • kumoiwa

          Ugh I hardly say this but I HATE CHAE-RYUNG this underdeveloped, snivelling, conniving little idiot who’s convinced herself that Won loves her when HE DOES NOT.

          Wook is a sad, sad loser. The End.

      • 8.1.2 Cocoboo

        The scene with General Park made me tear up too. His line about the late king Taejo was especially sad.

        • kumoiwa

          I know right? General Park devoted everything to Goryeo, even his precious only daughter, and that’s just devastating that even until the end he only had good words of advice for So and nothing less.

      • 8.1.3 Kz

        This was the word I was looking for. CONTRIVED.

      • 8.1.4 Kryz

        Haven’t watched this episode yet but I’m loving moon lovers so far. so sad that others hate it.
        Anywayz,just want to comment for now that I kinda notice Chae-ryung and Won’s relationship since the hairclip episode. you know, the one where Yeon Wha had Chae-ryung beaten up and Won’s kinda defensive… just sayin

        • kumoiwa

          I know that scene you’re talking about, and I don’t think Won was being defensive there, just sort of extra jumpy in his usual sniveling way. But that’s precisely what I’m saying–there has been only ONE clue as to how Chae-ryung and Won are related, and the show now expects us to believe he has her absolute loyalty because she loves him? HOW ON EARTH? I really wish they’d built it up more, because that’d be more logical and organic, but eh.

        • Muunamii

          Noticed it too!

        • Kiara

          The back stories to this series are very interesting from the novel and historical standpoint. We would’ve been rooting for the main and side characters.

          This writer had great ideas but he just doesn’t know how to put it all together effectively in 20 episodes. If the director and editor weren’t sleeping in their job they would’ve edit out or cut down some unnecessary scenes so every moment counts.
          I’m glad that they didn’t mess with the ascending order. At least they know their boundaries.

          • channel

            I don’t think the director and post-prod team has slept at all. I think they’ve been editing and editing and editing until nothing was left of the original script or vision. I wish they’d all keep still and let it go. I believe the original script is better than these reedited 100x version. I understand how hard it is to let your work of art go and grow on its own but the team needs to know when to stop.

            Kudos to LJK for holding-up and not giving-up in promoting his show.

      • 8.1.5 Kz

        OK, one more before I sign out. Been thinking about this and finally I have it. The betrayal of Chae Ryung (when she first poisoned CP) — that was SO random. Like, where did that come from and HOW did that come about? You mean to tell me she and prince (don’t know his name, irrelevant therefore) had a thing and we didn’t know about it? Is that her motivation for these strings of betrayal? How can she do that to Hae soo, then?

        See, it’s so random. They probably have a backstory somewhere we don’t know. This vacuum is what creates confusion in the viewers and in the overall story.

        • Kz

          Sorry, just to add. If Chaeryung was such a catalyst in the story, in that she was the one that poisoned CP to transition to Yo, shouldn’t she have more of a backstory than useless Woohee? I’m sorry Seohyun, but you’re just not cutting it with the overall story line. I thought when I first saw you, you had this revenge thing going on. It didn’t work out, so that was that. Now you’re still here, for what?

        • Barbrey

          We did have a hint. It wasn’t big but I’ve suspected something between her and Won ever since. When she was being whipped by Yeon Hwa, Won looked worried for her and after said she should not have been whipped like that. I mean, this is Wang Won, already established as caring for nobody but himself. He and CR also exchange a meaningful glance in that scene. Anyway, I wasn’t surprised when it turned out he and CR were in cahoots because I figured they were having an affair.

          • kz

            Guess I spoke too soon. Ep 18 –no spoilers.

        • kumoiwa

          I really, really, REALLY agree.

          @Barbrey is right, we had just ONE hint that she and Won had something going on when they exchanged looks after she was whipped by Yeon-hwa, and that was it. No Chae-ryung accidentally dropping hints about Won, no scenes of her sneaking off from Damiwon to meet someone, no scenes of her spying on anybody, NOTHING. So I definitely agree, they need the backstory to make her betrayal more organic and palpable. But she’s already incurred my wrath by poisoning Mu, so eh, maybe the production team thought this would work too–since she’s already pissed the viewers off, there’s no need to continue with that backstory.

          • Lucifermeo

            I think the actress who plays Chae-Ryung mentioned that she had filmed many more scenes, esp with Hae Soo but none of them eventually meet the final cut. I believe that some hints about Won may have been in there, but alas, behold the mighty power of our editig team …

            Btw, I’m Dan hahaha.

    • 8.2 uchie

      seem like we will not get happyending in goryeo, even i knew it, but still TT_TT *cryingbucket*

    • 8.3 dabbs

      I don’t think it’s really ambition but rather survival, and taking advantage of the situation to her (Queen Sinjeong’s) benefit.

      In the earlier episodes when Yeon Hwa was all for Wook to remarry another powerful family after Lady Hae’s death vs. Wook wanting to stay on the down low away from the power struggle and politics to live a happy life outside the palace, Queen Sinjeong sided with Wook. As long as no one was getting killed, she didn’t care much for a change.

      But when news travelled that Wook and Yo were staging a rebellion/coup which would mean death for her family and Queen SMSS if it was unsuccessful, the strategist and level headed in her played out in order to figure a way out to survive — “be a mom first before your role as queen”.

      Now that So’s the king, she knows that their family would be in danger, especially if Wook is still trying to vy for the throne. She probably knows that none of her kids would be willing to give it all up and live a life outside and away from the palace. Which means that the best way would be to back her daughter, Yeon Hwa and aid her.

      Plus, the power struggle then was a battle between Taejo/Mu vs. Yo/Queen SMSS. But with Taejo and Mu dead, Yo being crazy, Queen SMSS fretting over Yo and trying to include Jung, and So not being the most social with political allies, this was now her chance to have her family join in the game.

    • 8.4 Yoyo


      I finally found the perfect word to describe this episode:


      – the editing was bananas!
      – Yo went bananas!
      – what Queen Hwangbo did was bananas!
      – our OTP looked liked happy monkey eating bananas!
      – Chae Ryung is going bananas over Won!
      – Wook looked like he swallowed an entire banana!


    • 8.5 FanOfLeeJunKi'sMane

      Speaking of Yo as the King; allow me to throw some insights about his reign’s FATAL error.

      TITLE: King Yo’s “What Could Have Been” OR “The One (Throne) That Got Away”

      After watching this episode, and considering how Yeon Hwa coldly ditching her bro just for a mere chance to be queen; I’d say the one and ONLY mistake the late King Yo has made was rejecting Yeon Hwa’s marriage proposal (she actually visited King Yo wearing that ruby ring…waaaaaait; was that her marriage proposal acceptance? Didn’t matter. Still incest. Moving on~)

      Therefore, imagine the possibility.

      1. Yeon Hwa would be encouraging King Yo to be better at leading the nation by hinting/suggesting improvement points to help him solidify his throne ownership.

      2. Granted, Yeon Hwa won’t be the First wife, but come on, we know she’s completely capable of being Queen without the King’s decree. Her manipulation, and scheming nature are sufficient. Consider her the Queen already. Now that she’s THE QUEEN….

      3. Yeon Hwa would tell King Yo that killing his bro ad le wife is necessary evil in order for him to become a great king. Even their dad (late Taejo) kills people mercilessly; to the point that the sons don’t even dare to defy him, at all. She’d help him throughout the guilt trip with her reverse psychology anytime. He will not go loco with her next to him.

      4. Yeon Hwa can easily evade the nastiess barb and whatnot from that King’s Mother (not So’s mom, y’hear me?). Back the, she pretentiously drank the poison just to get Soo out of the picture, maiantaining So in the palace, get Wook to covet the throne, be rid of Lady Oh (collateral damage) and most importantly, one-upped the queen’s scheme into her own scheme. She’s that badass, honestly.

      5. Yeon Hwa would secure her family and Wook’s position, and will stop Wook from getting back together with Soo by – *read No.6* (But then again, she needs no help in that department, So’s heart is no longer Wook’s anyway).

      6. Yeon Hwa would convince King to allow So marrying Soo and leave the palace (She likes So, but pretty sure luuurve the Queen’s seat better); and let them become envoys or even totally strip So of his Pricehood for choosing a water slave as a wife; making So forever incapable of being King; by completely cutting off his wings ( a better metaphor would be pulling out all his wolfie fangs away)

      7. King Yo will reign in prosper; by reign, I mean act as the puppet king behind Yeon Hwa; who is now the Shadow King of this show. (a-la the shadow king in Scholar Who Walks The Night.)

      Goddamnit Yo. Why didn’t you marry her?

      • 8.5.1 Metebelis3

        +1000 to this!

  9. endo

    Wook and Chae Ryeong..i can’t even.

  10. 10 pickledplumtree

    Oh dear.

    This was the first episode that made me feel very frustrated for the reasons that others have been all along.

    I know it’s been said, but there really was no reasonable build up to Yo’s extreme guilt and demonstration of humanity. Sure, he could have had some feeling for his bros and pop deep down, but all we were shown was ruthlessness. It made his end feel like grasping at straws for sympathy and understanding.

    And what the heck, Soo, could you really not run from a collapsing King Yo? Did he really throw you down by from grazing you?

    At this point I am plum ticked off by the lack of motive displayed for Queen SMS’s hatred of her son. She hates So and rejects him even when he’s king? She rejects the position of Queen Mother? If all her care was to be the mother of the king, what’s the problem? If she hated him from the beginning because he didn’t work as a tool to manipulate his father, if it was out of remorse (unlikely), if it was because she didn’t think he could be king because he was scared, or because of some weird dream or fortune she heard, WHATEVER, but at this point I NEED TO KNOW. Why, Evil Queen, WHY?! Is there even a why? The lack of reason given, along with other things as the series has progressed, has made her into a weaker character than she should be.

    The scene when So was talking about the capital city and then they all of a sudden started having dinner together was so choppy that I actually thought it was previews or possibly fast forwarding. I was like, this is so weird, what? Oh this is what everyone’s been talking about with the choppy-chop-chops.

    Lastly, it’s dumb to think that Soo’s scar could prevent her from marrying the king if he willed it. Like, he’s the king.

    That is all for now!

    • 10.1 McCookie

      Yes! I never notice directing/editing. Seriously, this is the first time, because it’s so very WTF. The pacing is awful. The characters feel inconsistent, because their stories are jumping around out of context.

      LJK is killing it, but one can only barely appreciate his genius, because the emotion is sudden and out of place. It hurts my heart to see it. I LOVED the Chinese version, even with it’s bad graphics and mildly attractive actors. This was a chance to make what was great… like… unforgettable. But how is it so disappointing, even while LJK is so nnng-hot?

      • 10.1.1 pickledplumtree

        Lol YES. The Chinese version’s graphics…those CGI water lilies killed me.

        Don’t forget the fake trees that made it simultaneously autumn with flaming maple leaves and spring with blooming cherry blossoms ALL YEAR LONG. Even on New Year’s episodes! And yes to the “mildly attractive actors” comment, too. Loved it.

    • 10.2 tsinita

      I too never understood the reason for Queen mother to hate Wang Su so much… i never understood why. Someone enlighten me please?

      • 10.2.1 Persian Rose

        The Queen SMS reasonings were shown far better in Shine or Go Crazy! Here she just hates Wang So without any explanation and she continues to hate her for no reason!!!

      • 10.2.2 Kiara

        No one in their right mind would understand her. I do not get this writer.
        The 4th prince’s mother in the original and Queen Yoo of the Goryeo were not this extreme. This is all the writer’s own interpretation.

      • 10.2.3 LKB

        Tsinita, I’m not sure exactly what made me think it, but from the Queen mother’s fight (when she cut So’s face) early on with Taejo and the general hatred for both her AND Taejo’s beloved court lady… I thought So was the Damiwon head lady’s son and the Queen mother’s had died but they told the court lady it was hers who died (or something to that effect)… hence her spite toward him, commenting he was her hell and shame to Taejo when he was so young, saying he’s not her son forever and a day… and his character and appearance being SO different (IF my thought is correct on who is who in this very bizarrely thrown together mess, they matched him and the beautiful court lady very well–the cheekbones and more sleek angled lines vs the more broad features of the power-addicted queen mother and the sons we know to be hers–much like how, smartly on casting [but god forgive the bad headpieces, esp. in the rain when it’s SO obvious that hair doesn’t connect to the neck :P!) Wook looks very different from the super-crazy queen’s sons, So doesn’t, to me, look like several of the brothers… to me, I kept thinking the reason to torture him was ultimately her jealousy over the woman her husband truly loved… steal and abuse her son=perfect long-term sort of true psychological terror/warfare, the sort of thing you expect of the mom who is completely willing to work with the “monk mobsters” who couldn’t speak… she was SO revolted every time So did anything for her, which just makes me think “not her blood.” Remember, after all, the court lady was ultimately punished BECAUSE her son died–the queen mother probably would not remain queen, let alone be so powerful, if it came to light it was HER son who died… guilt the court lady carried forever and ever.

        THAT SAID, I never quite figured out if the court lady 1) totally miscarried early, 2) gave birth prematurely [said it was partly from some damage to her body in working too late in her term and I thought there was something about her being knocked down by the jealous queen] and either lost the child OR THOUGHT she lost him when he was switched with the queen mother’s dead baby (I *thought* and felt almost sure she gave birth but guilted herself for the baby not lasting the night or something like that), or 3) maybe, though not mentioned explicitly, the child rejected her breast milk etc and died that way–it could be that the queen’s son was super sickly…

        I’m PROBABLY WRONG but would there be any other reason for the queen, when So was a cute little boy, to be SO vicious and hate him SO outwardly if she hadn’t lost her own&stole her rival’s? She had ZERO maternal instinct for him but SO much for Yo/Jung. It’s obvious the 4th prince would be next as a king before the 14th (Jung)… Anyway, how could she curse child #2 if he’s TRULY her son? That makes zero sense: more princes=more power&stability for queens, after all, and not fully protecting a prince was likened to…

        • Bogummy'sWife😍

          Wow I never thought of that…

        • manquant

          OMIGOSH. I didn’t think this writer’s capable of dead baby prince switcheroo (plus I don’t want to wish any more heartbreaking backstory for Court Lady Oh Sooyeon, may she rest in peace) but then that is very possible. Quite makjang but possible.

          • karin

            Wow, awesome! Never thought of that and actually would be awesome for So if this theory could become the truth. He can now be glad that its not that he is so bad that her own mother ultimately hate him, it’s just that he IS somebody else’s child, and now that the-mother-he-thought-was-his isn’t actually his and has been the plotter of his real mother, he can just burn her alive or even better-put the same scar on her face. Is it too cruel?

          • Kiara

            I’m not big on baby switch either especially if they don’t have the time for it.
            Knowing that the real Lady Oh was Wang Mu’s mother I felt that Taejo loved Wang Mu but he trusted Wang So more as the most capable and unattached to the current politics and politicians .

            I guess it would’ve worked with Wang So if they were to change it and it would be the one logical explanation to why Queen Yoo couldn’t stand Wang So as her son or even as a candidate to the throne.
            (Thumbs up to you LKB).

        • tsinita

          Wow thank you so much for going through the great lengths of explaining this to us.. Many have benefited from your explanation. Turns out I’m not the only one confused about this absolute have of Queen/crazy mom.

        • pickledplumtree

          Very interesting, indeed! But they would have to clear that up if it were true…

    • 10.3 Foye


      The only answer i want is WHY QUEEN SMS hate SO soo (sorry) much? It’s ep 17 already, So is the king already, Yo is dead already, Jung is useless and judgemental spoiled brat as always, she gets her hair black again, BUT STILL NO ANSWER

    • 10.4 transient

      I have been watching SBS version so far and sporadically watch the international version, so I never really understand when people complain about the choppy editing. However last night I happened to watch the raw SBS version and the subbed international version this morning. My, the international version sucks big time. The scene with the scroll, meal with Baek Ah and So sleeping accompanied by Su was edited terribly and disjointedly in the international version. Since I first saw those scenes in the SBS version, with better flow and editing, it made sense.

      Therefore, I would advise you to watch the SBS version for more coherent viewing experience. Additionally, you can pretend the messed up international version never existed 😀

      • 10.4.1 MomRaishaRaline

        can you tell me where can I watch the SBS version… i only got to see the international version and it was frustrating… thanks

        • transient

          In my case, I dl them. However, I have seen some websites with SBS version for online viewing. Since I don’t watch online that much I don’t have link to those websites. Try googling “scarlet heart ryeo online”

          You can identify SBS versions by “SBS” watermark on the top right side of the drama.

          • pickledplumtree

            Thank you!

        • Ratea

          You can try kissasian.com
          They uploaded SBS version with sub.

          I’m already giving up with international version

      • 10.4.2 Baek

        Its pretty expected for sbs to be “better” (unless they made a bigger mess in editing further..)

        But i guess it doesnt stop ppl from watching the different versions as there are certain scenes which only appear in either of the versions.. or some scenes got extended/shortened in either version..

        Had it not been for the actors and im interested in the entire story.. I would had stopped long ago.. The editing really pissed me off.. (I wonder would it be better if sbs didnt edit theirs and there’s only 1 version circulating around.. true we wont get to see certain scenes and probably the worse editing ever.. but at least we wont know how lousy they are in editing exactly..)

        • Baek

          I think this is the only Drama with so many versions floating around???

          Normally i could accept if its due to certain licensing or restrictions in certain country, thus removing certain portion and stuff.. But this doesnt even apply to this drama totally..

          Its like oh so they dont like it.. lets make a v2.0 and jumble up the order and make it seems better.. and we could add/remove/increase/shorten some parts to make it flow..

      • 10.4.3 channel

        I think it depends on the episode. International version of ep 16 is much better than the SBS version. More fluid storytelling, more important clips and longer scenes.

  11. 11 scribbler

    I loved Wook, was devastated when they broke up, but thought he would be an excellent rival and an interesting villain so I was like ok fine. But yeah no. Sigh. I’m disappointed in what this show COULD have been.

    • 11.1 pickledplumtree

      Good point! That WOULD have been thoughtful and engaging. Oh well. :-/

  12. 12 Honeymilk

    I feel like with all the timeskips this story would work out better as a novel (or with like thirty episodes).

  13. 13 NO1

    Ok finally our prince became the king!!!!! FINALYYYY!!!
    The first Manse was given to him by Soo!!!

    But i felt sorry in the ending!!!! How can a mother only think her child as a promotional step!!!! Heartless queen!!! She shouldn’t have married the king but the throne!!!!
    And the look on yo’s face!!!! and i think YeonHwa is following her not her mother!!!!

    And those black color robe when he wears for the coronation and the face which wasn’t covered by the hair gives the best vibes for So ever!!!!
    Finalyy So,Soo,BaekHa a beautiful happy family!!!! The dinner scene is the happiest!!!! And I’m happy for them!!!! But it feels like it is gonna be the last happy family scene which we are gonna get from this drama!!!
    So and So’s OTP time is so swooning!!!!!

    Jung how stupid and blind can you be just like Moo????
    You are now with your mother and you are gonna protect Soo???? UNBELIEVABLE!!!!
    So finally the evil pair is born!!!! Seriously Wook how can you do this???
    You are trying to get the WolfDog under your leash and I’m sure you are the one who is gonna by maimed by it!!!!
    But as cunning as you are i don’t think that you will go for an head to head attack!!!!
    I think you are gonna do the same thing which you did to your other brothers!!! You are gonna divide them!!!!
    If So is the Wolf Wook is like a Fox!!!

    Wook once upon a time you loved Soo!!!! But how can you hurt her because she left you!!! And the sole reason fir her to leave you was you!!! Not anyone else’s!!! So how can you make her unhappy and suffer!!! Just as others said there is only a thin line between love and hate!!!!

    Thanks for the recap Heads as always…..

  14. 14 Syuni

    This episode made me 50% happy-50% angry. Happy b/c the plot finally moved forward and our Wang So becomes king but disappointed b/c we missed out on a lot of character growth and unknown dialogs from the other characters. I wanted to see So and his men gather support for their revolt and the reaction from the people who heard that he wanted to be king. I also wanted to see the reactions from the other princes and what they were thinking as well during the revolt. It’s such a shame b/c there’s so much that the director/writer could had spent time on instead of wasting so much time in the beginning. Things that did make me happy tho-
    1. Yo – we finally see him standing up to his evil mom and what he really thought of So. He’s the first born son (I’m a first born child as well) and so I understand the pressure of living up to expectations and having to always out do those very expectations every time. It’s never enough. It must had been harder for him as a son and as a prince. Hong Jong Hyun’s acting was amazing in the first few minutes of this btw. The desperation in his eyes during his final moments – desperate. He has really moved away from his typical nice guy image. I would love to see more of him doing bad evil characters (especially saeguk).
    2. Haesoo – she has become more likable. I like how fast of a thinker she was when she announced So as the new king. BUT her not having much time to live was very unbelievable. She has grown a lot as a character – smarter but not stronger.
    3. Haesoo/Wook – “He was always honest with me” were the words she told Wook as to why she supported So and stood by his side. Honestly goes a long way. I don’t feel bad for him at all. He’s constantly scheming and I really hate those type of men “if I can’t have you, no one can” type. Instead of wishing you the best, they wish for you to be as lonely and as bitter as they are. He’s obviously at fault and he still can’t see what made HaeSoo had a change of heart.
    4. Wang So – everything about him makes me happy. Wang So as a prince was stable and confident but Wang So as a king is insecure and afraid. Of course, all the previous kings were afraid before too. Being king is nothing more than a title. He’s a puppet for his followers since he needs their power to stabilize his position. BUT Wang So raising babies – YASSSSSS!!!
    5. Jung – as much as I haven’t really liked his character growth – I liked the fact that he told Haesoo she was just going to be one of the king’s women hence referring back to his father as an example.
    6. YeonHwa – as much as I also dislike her character, I like her ambitions and the fact that once she has her mind set on something, she’s going to do it. I’m the same way as her except, I want to do it the right way. For her, it doesn’t matter how she gets there, as long as she gets there. For me, getting there is important but I do not want to lose myself in the process.
    This drama has such an amazing plot with great characters and…

    • 14.1 Syuni

      enough storyline to keep it going but it’s all wasted!! We see So wanting to be king then it cuts to his rebellion then cuts to him and his ceremony as king. I HATE THE FLOW!!! These are scenes and moments that the director could had spent more time emphasizing on – So’s hardship to get to the throne (as they did to Wook). I’m getting so nervous as we only have 2 episodes left. HOW THE HELL ARE THEY GOING TO FIT ALL THAT TIME SPAND INTO 3 EPISODES? It’s just all so rushed now.

      • 14.1.1 Lemon Meringue

        Second everything you said.

        Despite everything, why am I still addicted? Sigh

      • 14.1.2 voice

        with the goddamn time jumps

  15. 15 juliesean

    Looks like the destiny of Soo is the same as the chinese version. It will be a tragic ending. There’s so much material but yet this drama is such a letdown. It could have been epic since we have LJK and KHN. With the chinese version, we see the progression of the 4th, why and how he became ruthless eventually. Unfortunately in this korean version, we don’t get that. The same with their love story. How did it progress from Soo distancing herself from So to suddenly becoming so in love with him. I think the drama should have another 10 episodes, there’s just so much more to tell.

    • 15.1 Del

      Could have worked with additional 10 episodes but in the hands of this writer and PD, I have completely no faith cause these two are the ones screwing up the “what could have been” epic saeguk.

      At this juncture, I could not believe I actually hope for a SEQUEL. Yes, as sequel. A sequel to make right of all the wrongs, to do justice to such a beautiful source materials. And I want this in the hands of a good PD whom isn’t batshit crazy with the close-ups and messing up the editing, an excellent writer who could keep the pace and storyline coherent and giving the characters depth. And I want Lee Jun Ki, Kang Ha Neul and Hong Jong Hyun. The rest can go.

  16. 16 Puni

    Thanks HeadsNo2 for the recap!!

    Episode 17 Highlights:

    Soo being the first to call So King was moving. Despite everything she wanted So to have what he wished for.

    The General leaving was as if So was being orphaned/abandoned again. He needed the wiser father figure to keep him grounded.

    Queen Yoo rejecting her title as Queen Mother and rejecting So again. Absolutely nothing is going to make that woman be a decent mother.

    Loved the sweet moments with Soo, So and Baek Ah. A true family enjoying a meal together.

    Sorry Wook. The difference between you and So? He was born under the Star of a King. Darn star screwed you over.

    Wook deciding to help the same relatives that turned their back on him. Ugh, times like this are why we want dedicated So. Not Wishy Washy Wook.

    So discussing having children with Soo.. Omo! \^O^/ !!! Yes!! Too cute.

    The nerve of Yeon Hwa, but B*&^#es do get what they want normally.

    I liked this episode, but wished more time was given to the lead storyline and revealed more details of how they were feeling.
    Going to find the SBS version. Seen clips on Instagram of the cut scenes. They are too good to miss.

  17. 17 Bleh

    The recap is good enough. Not enough passion to actually keep watching anymore the production sucks.

  18. 18 cherryarrow

    Oh God, where can I begin. What a roller coaster of an episode!!

    I have a feeling So knows Chaeryung is a spy, anybody with me?? The way he looked when Soo mentioned to him about not letting Chaeryung leave the palace. And also, is that girl delusional to think Won will whisk her away from the palace like a knight in shining armor? Girl, that guy only loves money and himself. I’m not even going to be sad when she dies, good riddance.

    And man, that ending close up of Wook’s face was not necessary, that wasn’t a comical scene at ALL.

    Boy am I glad they decided to edit the damn episode, the international version was such a mess, who the heck hired the editing team??? I felt like their intern did all the editing job and they sold the final copies overseas. To think people pay to watch such crappy editing skills….

    • 18.1 pogo

      lol that sudden almost rotating zoom on Wook’s face…… who the heck operates the cameras on this thing??

      The SBS version wasn’t perfect but the international version was kind of insane. Flashbacks everywhere, the good So/Su stuff cut short, just NOPE. And the editing really looks like someone did it after a few too many drinks.

      I’ve been pissed off with Chae-ryung for weeks now, especially thanks to Su’s blind trust in her. And if she is the reason why there ends up being a rift between So and Su…… NOPE. I’ve just been fuming even more since she’s clearly shown to be doing it for love of Won Weaselly – heck I’d even have understood if she was into Yo, but Won? The guy who literally cannot tell the difference between his wives with the lights out?

      BUT I will take the good parts of what I get, and this week that was So and Su together. This is the first time I’ve seen two people sit TOGETHER on a throne in sageuk, I can’t help but love it even more.

      • 18.1.1 cherryarrow

        YES, I’m so happy Soo sat on the throne with So, it’s like she’s sharing his burden with him, love it. People back then wouldn’t sit on the throne b/c that’s considered treason since only Kings can sit on it.

        Oh ChaeRyung, that girl is indeed stupid. Is the writers going to show WHY she actually loves Won? I’m pretty sure it’s not his good looks. If she really thinks Won loves her, her IQ must be 50.

        Lol that extreme closeup of Wook had me laughing, it felt like it’s what the Office or Producers would do, except those shows aren’t sageuk.

        • pogo

          oh man, Producers. I know that drama had its faults, but as a romcom, I loved it.

      • 18.1.2 Lemon Meringue

        @pogo, the International version was a travesty. I was watching it on TV, wondering WTF. I could have edited it better. For free

        • pogo

          @Lemon Meringue – seriously it’s so messy, and I don’t get the point of revealing that So and Baek-ah were puppet-mastering Yo’s delusions (it made more sense when we thought Yo really was being haunted by the memory of those he killed).

          and Lee Jun-ki in a different mask is gorgeous but that was just super random.

          I’m kind of missing @IvoryLight and @PineappleGongzhu here, I’ve tried and tried to make sense of wtf is up with the jade bracelet and why Wook is only smashing it now (never mind how it ended up off Su’s wrist and back with him in the first place), I mean she’s publicly been with So for about a year now?

          • Lemon Meringue

            Re jade bracelet – I can only surmise the critical scene of Hae Soo returning Wook the jade bracelet, and thereby helping ALL of us get final closure on that damned loveline, lies somewhere on the cutting room floor.

            And Wook kept it all this while because he still had lingering hope that he could make HS his when he became king. Wang So stealing the throne before he could, put paid to that dream.

          • pogo

            @Lemon Meringue – ugh the editing. AGAIN.

            I wouldn’t be surprised at that theory about Wook, because he definitely seemed like he conflated becoming the king with having Su at long last. And I suppose he just ignored all her verbal warnings and rejection of him, with the idea in his head that after he was on the throne it’d all be ok and she would come around.

            I find it ironic that early on, Wook told So that Su and Yeonhwa were ‘his’ people and not So’s (since Su was Lady Hae’s cousin and under Wook’s care), and now the tables have turned as we knew they would – and now both Su and Yeonhwa want to marry So, which would make them ‘his’.

          • PineappleGongzhu

            @pogo AWWW….I miss you guys, too! Sorry, I was traveling internationally for a regatta, and just returned home. I missed all the discussion from episode 16, and now I’m trying to catch up with episode 17.

            I have lots of thoughts, but it may have to wait until chatting about episode 18.

            Hey, wasn’t there talk on the Open Thread about a Hangout group to chat, obsess, fangirl, and whine about ML:SHR? Can I join in on that?

          • pogo

            @PineappleGongzhu – yayyyy, you’re back! I hope you had a lovely time.

            (also at the risk of sounding stalker-y, we’ve been waiting for you to join the google hangout – @kumoiwa left the link to it on one of the later pages of the epusode 16 recap)

          • PineappleGongzhu

            Daaaang, there are SO MANY messages to get through on the rehab hangout! HAHAHA!

      • 18.1.3 PakalanaPikake


        Re: lovebirds roosting on the throne. It’s the first time I’ve seen two seated on a throne, too.

        The SBS version wasn’t perfect but the international version was kind of insane.

        I watched DramaLove/YouKu and DramaCool/int’l., along with raw KissAsian/SBS and DramaYou/SBS, and will get around to KissAsian subbed.

        One thing they did do right in the international version was showing So’s psy-ops raid against Yo with Baek-A and Astronomer Choi. Now that I think about it, So probably did it more than once. Yo wasn’t imagining things — he was Gaslighted. I still think he was being poisoned, too, in addition to having a guilty conscience.

  19. 19 berries

    baek ah’s the only normal one here..

    • 19.1 pogo

      yeah, shame he’s stuck with with a spy for a gf. (and that flashback to her killing her uncle is so random – what’d she do with the body? Has no one noticed he went missing, or what?)

      • 19.1.1 cherryarrow

        Yeah wtf? All the scenes Woohee has been in had been so random. And are we going even going to touch on the fact she tried to stab the king and nothing happened to her???? I guess there won’t be any consequences for killing prime minster Park then.

        • pogo

          Seriously WHERE tf did she bury Park Young-gyu’s body? She seemed freaked out enough by just the memory of his blood on her clothes.

          Woo-hee in general is super random, I might have bought the Goryeo R&J storyline if they at least cast a better actress in the role. I mean, they got rookie Z. Hera for Baekhyun, they could have got another one here too. Someone like Yoon So-hee would have done a much better job of the scowling, too.

          • cherryarrow

            Omg they cast way too many noob actors, like Seohyun, this girl can’t act to save her life.

            Agree, Yoon Sohee would be a better option… I wonder if Woohee just left his body there. And also, is he really dead??? I mean??? I’m so confused every time she comes on screen, it’s like whats your purpose? Baekah and Woohee story is so pointless, the show would work fine without her character IMO.

          • pogo

            I mean, they were in a public place and bodies get discovered….maybe she’s a secret time traveller too and managed to jump back to the 21st century and leave his body there? That would also explain the weird affected-sounding ‘sageuk’ tone.

          • cherryarrow


            Ugh, I hope Seohyun would never go back into sageuk again along with Ji Soo.

            I’m more curious to see if the prime minister did die. I bet you he’s still alive lol.

          • Evelyn

            sigh I find woohee’s presence to be super random in this entire drama. What is her purpose seriously, just for the production to squeeze in another idol who can’t act just to bring in the audience? Her role can be done without and the plot would still have progressed just fine. I also find it incredulous how nobody has since sniffed out her traitorous deeds in the palace.

            Also I love Baekah whenever he’s with So (and Su) or anyone else. But with woohee? Gosh. No chemistry whatsoever. i FF all of their scenes and any random scene with her in it.

            I think i read on another site where a bunch of people were praising her “sageuk speech” and her acting skills. Hahaha. Girl really can’t act and should just stick to singing. She has 1-2 standard expressions and always looks pissed/surprised when she isn’t supposed to be.

          • pogo

            @Evelyn – was that site kkuljaem? Those commenters are straight-up delusional.

            I mean, even I can tell that whatever Seohyun is trying to do with her voice is (as I described it before) the Korean equivalent of trying to make your accent posher/speaking stiffly in the belief that it makes you look elegant or whatever.

          • Evelyn

            Yes that was one of those sites! Another one was onehallyu. The amount of delusion from those people. and the insane shipping of nam joo hyuk (and to some extent, jisoo) with her. Delusion beyond words.

            that’s what it is – she tries to sound very upper-crust but sorry gurl, that’s not sageuk speech. Also, I expected woohee to be a very elegant character; menacing yes, but a good dancer and with a very natural grace. seohyun’s woohee has none of that going for her.

          • pogo

            @Evelyn – yeah, that tone is like the vocal equivalent of sticking your pinkie finger out to drink tea. I just can’t with it.

          • Yoyo

            Woo-hee just left the body of Park Young-gyu right where she stabbed him, she did leave a note saying , “Won did it. Promise. Scouts honor. -Anonymous but you can call me Woo-hee for short.”

          • YY

            I wondered about that body too…it’s like it vanished into thin air, and no one seems to care.

          • Evelyn

            @pogo: sticking your pinkie finger out to drink tea – LOL. This phrase is going into my personal dictionary 😀

          • kumoiwa

            Woo-hee is so redundant now, the only reason she’s still sticking around is for Baek-ah’s eventual heartbreak and grief. Which is just, IT COULD HAVE BEEN BETTER DONE?? All they needed to do was just cast a better actress. @pogo Yoon So-hee is a great choice, why didn’t anyone on the casting team think of her? (If they could cast Baekhyun why didn’t SM push for Yoon So-hee as well ARGH this general incompetence is making me cray)

  20. 20 bamsa

    Hae Soo… gahhhh…. come on,, be a little smart. She doesn’t trust the man she loves, So, but has no suspicions to the maid despite obvious motives(Chae-Ryung)… gahhh… come on! Use some 21st century knowledge to deal with heart problems,,, sigh!

  21. 21 Gehrel

    Well, that’s a little anticlimatic. I was expecting that surge of grandest emotions when So walked down the red carpet to his newly acquired and deathly throne.

    … instead, it felt like they need to get over with the scene So being Gwangjong asap.

    … it feels a little rushed and messy. Everything’s falling apart faster than you can say “Oh, that’s it?”

    Luckily, at this point I’m being so shallow that I just want to see pretty people, some acting and gorgeous costumes.

    • 21.1 FunnyBunny

      The pretty is the only reason I’m still watching. It’s also what drew me in, but I digress. We may be shallow, but at least we’re honest! 😜

      • 21.1.1 justsaying

        Good one… The pretty is the only reason I’m still watching.

  22. 22 FunnyBunny

    “Jung and his sideburns”

    Even though he was a total basket case for the 10 minutes he was on screen, I kind of felt for Yo. Was he an egotistical sociopath that enjoyed seeing others suffer? He totally was, don’t get me wrong. Yet, if he turned out that way to please his mom and not be hated like So, that’a pretty sad. And yet, another reason to hate So’s mom. That’s gotta be reason #57853.

    Seriously, another nutty king? If Goryeo had a CSI team and I was on it, I’d be checking Yo’s bath tub for mercury. Just sayin.

    Su’s dying now? Wait, what? Um… ok… should we be… sad? She doesn’t seem all that upset… weird…

    So… does Wook even like Su anymore? Or is he being a strategic asshole cause he’s mad at her and So? And why is he helping Yeon Hwa? She’s the one who screwed him over in the first place!

    Oh show, I had such high hopes for you. Now you’re just as strange and silly as Jung’s majestic sideburns.

    • 22.1 pogo

      I got the impression Wook went straight for the jugular on So/Su out of a wounded ago (you rejected me because I wanted the throne, but you’re ok with him?!). I’m so done with Wook now, seriously. At least Yeonhwa I understand, she’s been consistent in her motives throughout.

  23. 23 paramount

    this episode was so dumb with more illogical plot points than ever before.

    in the international version, why did Wook think “this is my chance!” finding Yo at death’s door & then run off to Wang Sik Ryeom?? we already know that actually being there when the King dies is the easiest way to snatch the throne. obviously Wook has been pretty idiotic throughout this, but they presented him as SMART & playing long cons…. it wasn’t even that he was out maneuvered but that his actions MADE NO SENSE.

    ummm so since when did Chae Ryung actually love Won? i KIND OF remember her giving him a look in one of the early episodes but when she was poisoning the King she clearly looked terrified of him & now we’re meant to believe she only committed this horrible crime because she LOVES him??

    we all know So has a dark side but for him to go from 0 to “KILL EVERYONE” in .03 seconds flat was jarring to say the least.

    i feel like this episode made me so over this ending because it’s going in a very strange direction.

    • 23.1 Peridot

      I definitely think that the Chaeryung/Won relationship was never well developed (like many things on this show). The look that Won gave her when she was being beaten in a much earlier episode suggested that there might have been some concern on his part for her. Then, he appears threatening and cold when he tells Chaeryung to continue adding mercury to the late Mu’s bath water. And now, we are supposed to believe that there is at least a one-sided love on the part of Chaeryung….I can’t believe it. I don’t even like the way that Won’s character has been portrayed. I mean, I got the impression that he didn’t have a back bone and that he didn’t act independently, as he had to first see what his other brothers were doing. Now, he’s just become one “dimensionally” evil…I can’t even call him calculative because we don’t seem him doing much. It’s kind of hard to explain what I am trying to say, but I know that there are just too many faults with this show (despite the great moments we have been allowed to witness). And yet, we continue to watch :)! I guess many of us have invested too much time in this show to give it up at this point, lol!

    • 23.2 PakalanaPikake


      in the international version, why did Wook think “this is my chance!” finding Yo at death’s door & then run off to Wang Sik Ryeom?? we already know that actually being there when the King dies is the easiest way to snatch the throne.

      It didn’t make sense to me, either…

      Always remember, “Possession is 9/10 of the law” (Usurpers Edition).

  24. 24 Madkdr

    I just wish that in watching MLSHR I didn’t have to rely so much on conjecture, assumptions, expositions, theories, guesses, suppositions, presumptions, inferences, imagination and when all else fails, hazarding a guess.

    I have yet to see any episode where there would not be comments essay long to try and explain and figure out what just went down and why!

  25. 25 Piggie

    I find this funny:

    Dowager Empress wants Hae Soo to confirm the abdication. Jung told Hae Soo not to be afraid as they will protect her.

    When Hae Soo “confirms” it, Dowager Empress tries to shake her into a different answer. Jung seem unable to restrain his mother.

    Protect … really? And of all people to seek protection from — the Dowager? Not even Jung seems able to protect her, for crying out loud.

    I’ll stick to King So, Mansei Mansei ManMansei !!!

  26. 26 nil

    I am getting suspicious that this drama title should be scarred heart, and not scarlet heart. You know, the confusion between R and L and also T and D in romanization hangul. And the fact that all of these drama started with wang so scar… And later haesu’s

    • 26.1 Del

      LOL. That is funny.
      The ending of last night’s episode was ridiculous. How could a scar becoming an issue when So is a scarred man as well. I feel that they overplayed the “scar” element in this drama. Just when I though the scar issue has been put to rest, now it comes haunting us back again. May be should changed the title to “Scarred Hard”.

    • 26.2 pogo

      Seriously, if Su’s scar is such an issue…… she can just mix herself a batch of concealer. I mean, So has a scar too and that never stopped him becoming the emperor.

      (that said, I like that the scar still shows through sometimes, like the makeup on it is wearing off halfway)

      • 26.2.1 Lainly

        That is the only good detail this production has ever paid attention to. The scar still existed underneath the “cover-up”

  27. 27 Lola

    Ugh Wook is such a terrible person (Way to ruin the first 12 episodes for me). I wish the director had stopped YeonHwa from her evil sneering. I would have rooted for her to become Queen. Her and Su could have reached a peaceful agreement. Everything about this version pisses me off. Why? It’s so pretty, it could’ve been so great. Sigh.

    • 27.1 Ren

      I think I’m in the minority here, but I’m solidly Team Wook again, as it appears that Wang So is rather terrible at this politicking stuff. Mate, it’s your first day and your own clan has abandoned you and the military and taxation system are on the brink of collapse. I’m actually glad that Yeon-hwa is going to become Queen to help him out before the Goryeo breaks apart.

      Wook is right to be flabbergasted at Su’s reasoning as to why she couldn’t support his claim the throne. Destiny is no measurement of competency and aptitude for governing. For better or for worse, my impression of Wook from when his was proxy King to Mu is that he is better at managing the clans and passing law.

      In my ideal world, Wook would be King and So and Su can go back to being adorable puppies hopefully some where far away from the palace.

      • 27.1.1 YY

        Agree with you….So’s calm and smarts seem to have vanished with the winning of the throne….suddenly, he’s sporting eyeliner, looking evil, snarling, thumping his fist on the table, raising his voice at Su, vindictive, paranoid, defensive…..the boss from hell LOL what happened to old So? He disappeared overnight…that throne is possessed, and it’s changing So into Chucky, faster than you can say “Wait a minute, you haven’t bedded Su????”

        • Ren

          I did question it when Su looked super uncomfortable snuggling and bewildered by talk of baby making. Was it really a night of shadow puppets and wolf whistles? What about that candle going out? Can you disappoint me any further Wang So? I refuse to believe nothing happened that night, SBS can take their mixed signals and gtfo.

          • YY

            So: I’m tired. My wound is throbbing and I think it just cracked open again after all that shadow play. My dry lips are bleeding because they cracked after all that whistling and howling and mooing and tweeting.

            Su: I’m not tired.

            So: Let’s just lie down.

            Su: I sleep sitting up.

            So: Why don’t you take off your outer garments?

            Su: I sleep with my outer garments.

            So: O..kay. Blow out that candle, will you?

            Su: I sleep with the candle lit.

            So: Lie down next to me.

            Su: I will only lie down next to my husband.

            So: Oh, okay then.Will you marry me?

            Su: Like a shot!!!

            Su tears off her outer garments, crushes the candle to dust with her bare hands, and leaps on top of So.

  28. 28 Pei

    Thank for fast recap Heads 🙂
    I’m getting frustrated by this double (or triple) editing versions, watch the S-One international version then streaming the SBS version, I dunno about Youko version one. I’m glad that Heads recapping the SBS version, international version got many loop holes and they cut So-Soo scenes -_-”
    Highlights in no particular order :
    1. Yo’s death. As history it is, Yo destined death in unavoidable. At the end he just realized that his mother may never love him trully as a son, on his way to death he finally understood what it’s feels being So is. Pathetic as it is, but at least he make the right decision by writing blank will and let Soo to decide. Bye Yo…
    2. Empress Sinjeong determination. Wow! She plays damn smart! Her move by supporting YH as new Queen-to-be is blow me away. Now I know where does this wicked genes run through from! o_O”
    3. Jade bracelet breaking & YH-Queen-to-be. I guess we will never know how on earth that jade bracelet makes it way back to Wook. Wook just simply have it and smash it after that small talk with Soo. HE maybe unsatisfied by what Soo said regarding this whole being King woman but didn’t work with him thing, so am I bro… I feel you. After that bracelet gone, Darth Wook become even darker! Menacing this vengance aura, If-I-can’t-have-you-neither-So-can. Sad, but this smart move of Wook just pricking So inner sadism back to surface. Maybe…this sadistic Gwangjong is created by Soo (accidentally). Hahaha
    4. Soo poor health reveal at last. We all kinda guessing that something is wrong with Soo always clenching her heart everytime something big happen, yup…dreadful terminal illness is not pre-empted from this saeguk. With this revelation, I don’t think Soo will get pregnant as the C-version BBJX. I do want it, but not hoping too much. *sigh*
    5. Blind Jung. Wtf with this maknae prince?!? Even after Soo remind him of how Yo make So kills Eun, he still as stubborn as OX saying that this all happen because So stays in Songak blablabla. I know you don’t want to see bad side of you dearest mommy and big brother, but deal with it dude! Maybe So will not kill him but just sent him to Qing or somewhere far and never comeback, then I don’t have to see that ugly side burn and hair style. *lol*
    6. Baek-Ah and Woo-Hee. I don’t like this Romeo and Juliet Goryeo era, Baek Ah too damn great to be with Woo Hee. Sorry to Baek Ah, but please just oust Woo Hee out the show. Too much conflict interest on this pair

    With next week preview in 2 version, I’ve kind of give up on happy ending in Goryeo era for our OTP. Just give them happy ending in the future, too many damn conflicts in Goryeo. -_-“

    • 28.1 pogo

      We were never going to get a happy ending for So/Su anyway, there’s no version of the story that allows it 🙁 The closest anyone is going to get to a happy ending is Eun and Soon-deok confessing their love to each other and dying together with that knowledge, because this drama loves to twist the knife.

      Baek-ah and Woo-hee are a waste of time, and that’s despite my like of Baek-ah. He’s much better when he has scenes with So or Su or better yet, both together. And the Silla-Hubaekje Romeo & Juliet, as you said, falls utterly flat.

      It’s funny to think Eun was so annoying on his own but promptly became more bearable once Soon-deok arrived on the scene because she was so damn adorable herself. Meanwhile, Baek-ah who was the most likable of the princes, played by an actor who could actually manage to get his character right, ends up saddled with a boring textbook ‘my love is my enemy’ love story played by a really bad actress and it results in all the energy getting sucked out of scenes where they’re together.

      if they had to kill off a brother’s love interest, I really wish it hadn’t been Soon-deok 🙁

      and I agree on Jung btw. I wanted him to just wake up to what he already knows, which is that So is not the architect of their misfortunes. But now I just want to smack him and tell him to stop being a delusional brat. (and I like So losing it with him and asking him if he’d like to find out Yo’s true last wish ‘in the afterlife’, heh)

      • 28.1.1 Pei

        @pogo so did I, smack Jung’s head may not bring him back to reality but it will satisfied us *lol*

        • pogo

          Seriously it’s not as if So didn’t try with him, at first. But he’s being a blockhead, and digging in his heels on being one.

    • 28.2 Kz

      I was thinking about that bracelet, like how it ended up with him. It would have been nice, as a painful closure, in any of the previous episodes, if Soo returns that bracelet to Wook. That way, there was CLEAR indication from both that, well, it didn’t work out, you hurt me, you left me, you abandoned me, etc, so Wook won’t go asking why it is she went to So. Naturally, she would, the way he abandoned her, right?

      I wish they showed an scene like this. That way, even the breaking of that bracelet feels real and painful. Else, we know the ship has sunk many moons ago.

      • 28.2.1 pogo

        yeah, the return of the bracelet would be the ultimate indicator that Wook was a closed chapter for Su (seriously, WHEN did she give it back?! Though she told him more than once she was done/understood they were done), and it would have served as an effective bookend to Wook finally smashing the bracelet (seriously her heart has been So’s for how many years now?) because the gap between the two is the time in which he couldn’t let go.

      • 28.2.2 Pei

        I know right?!
        As painful as it will be, both of them need closure. Did I miss Soo return the bracelet after she ask Wook before Mo coronation? IMO, If they just put the scene there, it would be perfect. Why? because I don’t want Soo to keep the bracelet any further than that.
        Editing team, you need to do better job! Stop torturing us!! -_-“

  29. 29 MomRaishaRaline

    Can someone tell me where can I download the international version ? I so far only watched the SBS version. Thanks

    • 29.1 MomRaishaRaline

      Is the international version is the one aired in S-one channel? if so then what I meant was the SBS version.. where can I download them? thanks

    • 29.2 tsinita

      share please!

  30. 30 Aurora

    My heart scar everytime i watch this drama.
    Give me happiness pliss.

  31. 31 pogo

    My thoughts after this episode:

    – OH MY GOD SO IS GORGEOUS. You’d think we’d be used to Lee Jun-ki’s face by now, or possibly desensitised, but nope. Still swoonage happening every time he gets himself a new hairdo, and while i miss the ponytail, he looks so gorgeous with his hair up and in his coronation robes, that I can’t complain.

    (side note: can any Beanie with better photoshop skills than me, make a prospective db header feat. Wang So? Because Lee Jun-ki’s face in the mask deserves to be immortalised in header form)

    There’s a lot of jumping around with the events of this episode, and I think the SBS version was actually better than the dramafever one on the editing/general storytelling front. Not perfect (when has this drama ever been?), but I really loved So/Su here because this is the tiny break they catch before the storm and before a likely bout of noble idiocy from Su over her impending death.

    And in the midst of all that jumpy, I must say I really loved Hong Jong-hyun as Yo. This story may make its kings a little too conveniently mad but that’s not to take away from his performance – he really went for Yo in full breakdown mode, and even managed to make Yo sympathetic in the face of Queen SMSS being all ‘never mind if you’re getting killed, just let Jung take over now!’ callousness. And how his crazy eventually led to Su becoming the ultimate kingmaker of So, because she was the one who took the lead in bowing to So as king. And So getting such a hard time once he’s on the throne is probably going to have Yo rolling in his grave.

    • 31.1 pogo

      But seriously, there’s a long list of people I’d have gone all Gwangjong ‘KILL THEM ALL’ on if I were him

      Let it be noted now that I would officially like to drown Chae-ryung*

      and Won

      and Woo-hee

      and Wook

      and Jung**

      and Queen SMSS

      * (that weasel prince don’t love you, and you’re going to keep betraying Su for THAT?! I was expecting at least threats to her entire family, not willing cooperation!)

      ** this drama has managed to do the impossible and shake off my Ji-soo blinders to how much Jung sucks sometimes. I’m now officially sick of him blaming So for everything, he’s deluding himself as hard about that as Wook was about the throne/abandoning Su.

      • 31.1.1 cherryarrow

        Jung really needs a reality check. He is making me really hard to like him. He’s so set on disliking So, but he’s blinded by the fact that Yo did all the evil deeds. Oh so he’s saying Yo is ok for killing Eun, but So is the devil by taking the throne??

        And please Ji Soo, never do sageuk, it’s not good for our sanity.

        • pogo

          @cherryarrow seriously I started off liking Jung a lot but the more stubborn he gets towards So, the more annoyed I get with him.

          And it’s really tragic, in a way. So and Jung are the most similar to each other, out of all the brothers – they’re both driven by strong loyalties to ‘their’ people and both are similarly attached to Su (though So of course knows her on a much deeper level), and of his brothers, I’d have thought Jung was the one So had the best chance of forming an actual relationship with since he didn’t seem as poisoned against So as Yo is….. but then, he was raised by Queen SMSS after all, they probably started with the Blame So For Everything campaign before he was even out of nappies.

          • cherryarrow

            I just feel like the production team did a bad job casting Jung as well as his characterization. Can’t somebody like Yeo Jingoo or Park Bogum play 14th???? Ji Soo can’t do sageuk speech to save his life. Ugh.

            Oh wow, Jung = blames everything on So
            Wook = blames everything on Soo

          • pogo

            @cherryarrow OMG this is spot-on

            Jung = blames everything on So
            Wook = blames everything on Soo

            14th is way too small a role for Yeo Jin-gu or Park Bo-gum to be bothering with, it fits in Ji-soo’s wheelhouse of smaller supporting roles pretty neatly. But yeah, I hope his takeaway from this is to please not go after bigger sageuk roles again, or at least work on improving his tone first before even thinking about it.

            I do think it’s a characterisation problem, like you said – Jung was pretty likable when he wasn’t hanging around Eun in the early episodes, despite the awkward speech. But Darth Jung just gets on my nerves.

          • Kiara

            I’m glad Yeo Jin-goo in not in this drama. He is way too talented to be wasted here.

          • Evelyn

            Yes to what the both of you are saying. Can’t believe I’m saying this, but Jung has got to be the least of my favs now. I can’t believe how 1+1=3 for him. Like things happen right before him and he knows who the culprits are but chooses to just stubbornly blame so for every. single. thing. >.<

            I'm also a Ji-soo fan and I initially thought it was just the bad writing for the 14th prince, but I find something pretty off about the way he's delivering his lines in this drama. It's like he doesn't really move his mouth much and always looks like he's delivering dialogue through clenched teeth. I don't know if it's just the sageuk speech that's putting him off but he doesnt come across a little unnatural and self-conscious even. Quite odd cause he's fine in modern dramas. Is it just me? He should just stay away from sageuks for awhile though

          • Evelyn

            *does come across a little unnatural

          • pogo

            @Evelyn – Ji-soo is great at conveying intense emotion in a really natural way…….. in modern dramas.

            But you’re spot-on about his weird pronunciation, his speech comes out like he has trouble shaping the words and it’s really obvious that his vocal tone isn’t clear like Lee Jun-ki or the two Kangs. He really needs to work on that – he can still play likable when presented with the opportunity to do so (the cave scene with poor Soon-deok was adorable) but Jung is written as basically going between stupid puppy mode and (recently) misplaced resentment, so it’s hard to get past the deficiences in his performance.

          • Evelyn

            @pogo: Right? I’ve watched him in all his modern-day performances, even those short film things and he’s really good at intense emotions with completely believable and natural delivery. But here…

            I don’t know why he seems to be having trouble pronouncing though, not sure if he’s conscious he’s supposed to be speaking in sageuk tone but can’t seem to get it right or what. It’s weird. And yes! His tone isn’t clear and he tends to swallow his words. I’m quite a stickler for pronunciation when it comes to acting cause I find it can really take away from a fine performance (at least for me).

            I loved the cave scene too! And the one scene in the forest with Su and the that one with Junki. True, Jung is a very poorly written character so these things are even more obvious.

            At the risk of sounding too picky lol, he needs to stand straight too. I notice that him (and sometimes Junki and HJH as well) tend to hunch quite abit.

          • pogo

            @Evelyn – I feel like that forest scene where Su rescued Jung (though I remember the trailer making it look like he saved HER, lol), he was actually pretty natural there.

            And the scene with So afterwards where he was a disrespectful brat and got a fist in the face for it, and then defended So against their mother because he knew So was actually right – I feel like that was Jung in a nutshell, and Ji-soo actually really did step it up when he was one-on-one with Jun-ki (who tends to get his male costars to raise their game anyway).

            I also agree on his posture, Ji-soo (all the 6-foot-and-up guys in the cast, actually) slouches so the costume looks even more like a little boy playing dress-up and not at all like an experienced military campaign veteran. Jun-ki’s quite a bit shorter but somehow that doesn’t register because he wears the sageuk costumes so naturally. Nam Joo-hyuk looked a bit flappy in his robe at the start too but I think he’s got his body language down by this point.

          • Evelyn

            @pogo Yup! the forest scene is etched in my mind though it was eons ago, it’s one of my fav scenes from the entire drama. I actually lowkey like the Haesoo/Jung pairing, like everytime I see Jisoo and IU on screen together, just the two of them, I get really excited lol. 14th prince/ruoxi was my absolute fav pairing in the Chinese version and I was bummed she never really returned his affection. So I was hoping the Korean version would follow a similar trajectory and have Jung romancing Haesoo…but… here we are.

            True, junki does make his male co-stars step up their game. That scene with So – I felt that that was the only time I was watching Jisoo in his natural element there. No other Jung scene has come close to that for whatever reason. I could even feel his chemistry with Junki though it was a few short minutes lol. I actually like the both of them together, preferably as allies, but it was never gonna happen much in this drama.

            Yeah why on earth do these tall guys slouch, give me those couple of inches if you don’t want it haha. But the slouching does take away from the character. Flappy…lol. I did notice the robes wore him instead of the other way around, and I felt that from most of the male cast except Junki and Haneul. HJH slouches quite abit even in real life that I’m really tempted to reach into the screen and get him to stand straighter lol.

          • pogo

            lol I think we’re the only two people on db who can bear to contemplate Ji-soo/IU as a potential pairing, but I really do like them together in the forest scene, they vibed well there. Like obviously not like her and Jun-ki or her and Haneul, but if someone paired them up in the future (in a MODERN drama please!*), I’d be into it. (v. surprised to learn he was actually born first, I was expecting her to be an irl noona to him as Su is to Jung)

            That post-forest scene with Jun-ki is the best Ji-soo’s been all series long – and yeah, they had chemistry all right. That was the one scene where I could actually see glimpses of what we’d liked so much about him in his previous acting projects, and it was strong enough there to eclipse even his poor sageuk speech. And then they went back to sticking Jung with Eun and being the Two Stooges, and I gave up. I had some hope again when Eun got married, that now Jung would get some independent development too, but that was too much to expect from a 20-episode series, I suppose.

            I’ve noticed that a lot of tall boys tend to slouch, even into their early 20s. It’s like they’re not used to being so tall yet/don’t have full command over their limbs, and I feel like that’s part of why Ji-soo is so convincing as a high schooler – he has the body language of a teenage boy (see also: Lee Jong-seok and Kim Woo-bin circa School 2013) Which doesn’t work out so well when he’s playing a supposedly-experienced warrior prince!

            (and yeah, those technicolour potato sacks made everyone look flappy lol. Not the best choice of costume on the younger cast)

            * One of Park Hae-ryun’s might not be bad considering they’ve both worked with her albeit not as full drama leads

          • Evelyn

            @pogo: Hahah right? I think they vibe well tog too (not that much chemistry but still good enough), though I was abit bummed I didn’t feel it that much in the room scene in damiwon. It was obvious jung already had a crush on her since then so why oh why did they choose to develop eun’s lame first love crush thing instead of Jung’s? jung/haesoo would have been so much more compelling as a romance and that can be used to pave the way to him fighting for the throne. Yes I initially thought IU was older!! She does give off a very mature vibe though, even irl so that might be why haha. I wanna see them in a modern day drama too, Park Hae Ryun does seem to have written some good dramas.

            Two stooges lol! I hated that he had to be sadled with eun/baekhyun for almost like 10 episodes, it’s such a disservice to him.

            True!! I think he does play the part of high schooler so well cause his movements/body language just gives off teenager vibes lol. I wished I had that problem of having to get used to my long limbs haha

    • 31.2 kumoiwa

      I would totes make the DB header! If someone would give me great photos ha

      • 31.2.1 pogo

        @kumo how about this one?


      • 31.2.2 pogo

        Also I wonder if the rain scene would work as a header or if it’s too gloomy : http://i630.photobucket.com/albums/uu26/dramabeans/drama/2016/MoonLovers/MoonLovers_11/moonlovers11-00600.jpg

        (I feel like the Cosmopolitan cover pic of Lee Jun-ki and IU would be great for a couples one, only the dimensions…)

        • kumoiwa

          Ooh I think the Cosmopolitan one would work. Do you have any links for that one?? 🙂

          • pogo

            @kumo I got it out of the db post: http://i1192.photobucket.com/albums/aa324/girlfridaydb/news/2016/Ryeo6.jpg

            (also thank you!)

          • kumoiwa

            I spent five million years erasing that background out of Lee Joon-gi’s hair, but here ya go:


            I hope it’s pretty enough 😉

          • pogo

            @kumo ooooooh it’s so pretty! I love that you rotated them to get the full-body shot in the banner with his hand on her back.

          • kumoiwa

            @pogo: Couldn’t miss out that hand could I heh. But man, this photo is really pretty and I can feel the chemistry just through my screen alone??

      • 31.2.3 transient

        YAY! Finally somebody is making a banner out of the hotness that is LJK in scarlet Heart.

        Can I request one with him in the mask, probably bloodied? Because we all know, with LJK, the bloodier, the better XD

        • pogo

          @transient – oh yeah, if it’s Scarlet Heart we have to have the mask!

          I think this is my favourite shot of it: http://i1058.photobucket.com/albums/t413/javabeansdb/drama/2016/ryeo/moonlovers3-00908.jpg

          • transient

            IKR. The mask is So’s identity after all. Moreover, the mask makes him look hotter XD

        • transient

          This: http://leejoongi.co.kr/as/data/file/photo/2072965474_dr43ETZR_ljg.jpg


          • kumoiwa

            Here ya go!



          • transient


            OMG Thank you! This is way better than I expected.

          • kumoiwa

            @transient: Glad you like it! Let me see how I can submit this to DB…

          • pogo

            @kumo – go down to the bottom of the page (if you’re on desktop), in the ‘Resources’ column there’s a link for Rotating Headers. You just paste the link to your proposed header/s into a comment to that post, and I guess db will check it out when they look for new headers next.

            (and once again, thanks so much for making these! You’re a star <3)

    • 31.3 gabobobobo

      Yup, I never find Hong Jong Hyun’s performance as astounding as LJK or KHN in this show. But, he nailed his last act really well. It’s just how the character was written didn’t allow him to show his acting range, I guess.

      • 31.3.1 pogo

        Hong Jong-hyun in crazy mode is great, I love how he goes for it.

      • 31.3.2 Evelyn

        I normally think HJH belongs in wooden city when it comes to acting (same as Nam joo hyuk), but i’m quite surprised at how the both of them are holding their own here and managing to come across very convincing as well. I think it’s how the roles are written – in a way which plays off their limited abilities. I absolutely enjoyed hjh as the crazy king

        • pogo

          @Evelyn – yeah, I was not at all optimistic when I first heard they’d cast Hong Jong-hyun and Nam Joo-hyuk, but they’re surprisingly among the better supporting actors here. I realise that may just be because, as you said, the roles as written capitalise on Nam Joo-hyuk’s charm and HJH’s ability to look menacing and mean, but they do add something of their own to it.

          • Evelyn

            I’m actually really amazed at how hjh is able to come across like an evil, crazy king without everdoing it and making it look cheesy. It’s quite easy to go OTT with such a role and make it look really ridiculous. But here, I can totally believe that Yo is slowly losing his marbles and he managed to even make me feel sorry for him.

            Strangely, I’ve never liked njh in any of his modern roles. He always comes across unnatural and stiff. He’s serviceable in supporting roles (like in citt) but i wouldn’t be watching a scene for him. But here, it’s like he’s in his element and even his dialogue delivery is pretty natural. Surprised!

          • pogo

            @Evelyn – yeah, Hong Jong-hyun so far has mainly been watchable as cold, unemotional types and I think pretty much everyone knew him as wooden. But he did a champion job of playing Yo, especially post-return from the dead.

            I’ve never been a fan of NJH in modern roles either, like I could tolerate him but he was a touch boring. I think he’s good at playing supporting friend roles, though – the trouble only starts when he becomes a main lead and has to try to go out of his comfort zone when it comes to emoting. But I think the stylised sageuk speech really works on him – some actors actually find sageuk easier than modern because once they get the technical stuff like tone etc right, it covers for a lot of things that would show up as flaws if spoken in a modern tone. I think NJH is one of those.

          • Evelyn

            @pogo: yeah i was pretty impressed with his performance post-falling off the cliff. He managed to hold his own in fight scenes/confrontational scenes with Junki and even came across pretty charismatic!

            Totally agree wrt nam joo hyuk. I think he needs to explore sageuk abit more, i think it suits him. The more formal style of speaking seems to suit him. I’m actually abit puzzled that he’s gotten two lead roles already (the most recent being that weightlifting drama). Like, I want to watch cause i like the second female lead, but I can’t imagine the amt of cringe I’d be experiencing watching him trying to emote lol. I think he’s one of those who’s just really lucky he has the looks/physique that Koreans love and has the backing of a huge agency.

  32. 32 tsinita

    Yo is finally dead, yet why am i not happy?
    So is finally king, yet why am I not happy?
    Soo and So finally sharing meals and bed together, yet why am i not happy?

    It seems like we’ve arrived at the point where we all wanted the characters to be and yet it’s not hitting the spot

    Wook… in my native language there is a word “mukmok” meaning to sit and pity onself. Wook Mukmok is so annoying. He could have been killed off in this episode and I wouldn’t even care. He seems to be in the scenes only when he needs to make a fool of himself. Either pitying or coming in the story line to show how he missed another opportunity to be great.

    At this point I don’t care anymore who sits on the throne, I want to see Soo and So in the 21st century where they are able to be with each other without the threats of treason, poisoning and evil queens lurking. I want a half episode of them in the 21st century to make up for the mess this show has dragged me.

  33. 33 Bond. James Bond.

    I can’t believe this drama. I might excuse it if it was being put together on the fly, but it’s amazing the quality of this, for something that was Preproduced! Like, for real?!!??!?
    Who ever wrote, and directed this, I will totally run far far away from, pretending like I didn’t hear anything! I would prefer jumping off a cliff, than watching another work from one of these. I think I would rather watch, Doctor Stranger, maybe Level 7 Civil Servant, or Dr. Jin. I feel like people aren’t as dumb there as here. And than to top it off, everyone’s acting, and Su dying.
    I don’t know why I am still here. Maybe I want just closure from this, and want to see how it will end. Might need a few drinks before though..
    And I’m just reading the recaps.
    I don’t even want to get close to actually watching it.

    What astounds me more, is that they are planning on making a sequel.. Like, why are they supporting this?!?!


    MUST CALM DOWN.. Breathe in breath out..

    • 33.1 Zoë

      Are they really have plan to make a sequel?? any news of it? (link maybe?)

      • 33.1.1 Kiara

        Lol who wants to continue this mess?

      • 33.1.2 cherryarrow

        I highly doubt it, 1 Korea never really makes sequels with the same cast and 2. the ratings

        they should never make a sequel since the original ended when Ruoxi died. DO NOT TAKE THE CDRAMA PATH, that Chinese sequel should be erased from existence. Bleugh.

        • justsaying

          yayayayaya… The Chinese SH version should not, I repeat, SHOULD NOT have a sequel. The endings, OMG – can’t put it in words but OMG, it sucks. Dreams within dreams.

          • cherryarrow

            The Chinese sequel was just terrible. Absolutely terrible, it has scarred me for life. How dare they.

          • pogo

            I’ve never seen the original BBJX, forget the sequel, but it makes me simultaneously amused and sympathetic to see how much the sequel pisses off fans.

          • cherryarrow

            @pogo i recommend BBJX but stay far far away from the sequel. That crap needs to be erased from history period.

      • 33.1.3 pogo

        I hope to god they don’t. None of the cast would touch it with a ten-foot pole anyway.

      • 33.1.4 Bond. James Bond.


        I still can’t believe this article. They totally have to be pulling our leg, right?

        • cherryarrow

          Don’t believe that website, their information on MLSHR is never accurate. I don’t even know how this website gets away this.

          • Bond. James Bond.

            Oh, good, relief.
            Nice, I can’t believe they would allow this website to be the first thing to pop up as news for MLSHR.
            I was so wondering why it was making all that crap about “high ratings”. Thank you for letting/warning me! Totally will keep in mind that!

          • cherryarrow

            @Bond. James Bond.

            I recommend checking news from Soompi or dramafever, they’re reliable!

          • Bond. James Bond.

            Will do, youre a lifesaver! 🙂

        • Bond. James Bond.

          I just found more that say, about supposedly making a sequel..
          😳😱😭 😭 😭
          I think they are just rumors..
          Just to be sure,
          ~praying to drama gods

      • 33.1.5 Bogummy'sWife😍

        Wow I hope not… but yknow maybe it would be better.. Hospitals for the dying Su, So not having to marry princess witch and become the king written about in history….

    • 33.2 Evelyn

      “I feel like people aren’t as dumb there as here.” – truth. Really, I think the characters are so badly written here that none of them does anything that makes any sense whatsoever. Everyone goes around in circles and unnecessary things get drawn out. Dislike beating a dead horse, but it’s one drama where i’ve had major issues with the editing and the character development. Nothing and no one makes sense.

    • 33.3 Anita

      Please Drama God, no sequel just let the drama have a peaceful death. If these dipshits were able to mess up an adaptation then a sequel will be 10,000 times worse.

    • 33.4 Bond. James Bond.

      For those who read my comment about them writing a sequel, I wanted to apologize. I was too quick to judge and write that, that I didn’t pay attention that my evidence was not reliable. But, thanks to someone who was sweet and willing to inform me to not go there, and directed me to better ones, I thank them. I will do better to comment things that are confirmed and reliable! Sorry for my mistake!
      Please, do ignore that and hope you all have a good night!

      • 33.4.1 Lizzie

        Well I appreciated your comment because the ensuing replies were great. Aha. Just the thought of a sequel is hilarious. I mean they couldn’t even do it right with BBJX’s sequel..and BBJX was a masterpiece. They literally f***ed up the story with the 2nd one. I wish I had never watched the damn thing…but I also enjoy remembering just how much I hated it and your comment did that for me, so thank you! aha 🙂

        • Yoyo

          @Bond. James Bond.

          Can I just say that whenever I see your name, my head does the James Bond voice?…….see, it’s doing it again.

          • Bond. James Bond.

            That’s the whole point! 😀
            Joking aside, I just chose this name, cause I couldn’t think of anything else, and I thought it would be funny at least..

        • Bond. James Bond.

          Although, I feel bad for those who did watch it, I am so glad I did NOT! I would have hated and been so angry to invest time and love in a story that ends up betraying me,just thinking of others angrys me..
          I’m, glad to be of help of taking out emotions that should be out. 😛
          For, if we can’t unite from dramas out of love, at least we can unite with hate. 😀

  34. 34 babsgrrl

    I couldn’t help laughing at:

    “Jung and his sideburns”


    • 34.1 pogo

      Seriously those sideburns….. what did Ji-soo do to piss off the hair department so badly, because in no world have I ever seen sideburns that look so much like eyebrow hair.

      • 34.1.1 Evelyn

        Really, the sideburns have got to be the most unrealistic sideburns i’ve ever seen in a Korean/Chinese sageuk. It’s beyond ridiculous. It looks like bristles to me and just adds to my increasing dislike of the 14th prince lol

        • pogo

          Seriously his sideburn texture is way too reminiscent of my younger male cousins’ attempts to grow a mustache.

          Only, you know, a moustache is not supposed to be near your ears. Jung definitely got a raw deal in the wig department as a grown-up, his princely hair ribbons in the early eps were much nicer.

          • Evelyn

            LOL. Exactly! Moustaches don’t grow so near your ears, like. Yes he definitely got the shorter end of the stick with all the hair – facial and otherwise. I much preferred him with his hair ribbons in earlier episodes too, he looked so handsome there!

            As of late, he started off with that sageuk mafia boss look with the slick-back fringe and ponytail. Cool thought but just didn’t look nice on him. And then he came back from the borders with discardedhorse-hair implants. I mean at least tie it up? or run a comb through it lol.

          • pogo

            Baek-ah and Jung looked a lot better with their hair ribbons before the first time jump.

            I don’t fancy Baek-ah’s current hair either but at least it’s better than Jung’s.

          • Evelyn

            True. I preferred the hair ribbons on everyone. Not a fan of baekah’s current messy hairdo but it’s still eons better than Jung’s.

            Funny thing is I think nam joo hyuk and lee joonki are the only ones in this cast that look really good with long hair. lol

          • pogo

            The hair ribbons looked gorgeous, I was sad to see So shed his for the updo, he was the last one of the lot to make the switch 🙁

            I don’t exactly fancy long-haired Nam Joo-hyuk without the ribbon (like with his hair down over his shoulders), but Jun-ki? YES PLEASE. He looks ridiculously good in every one of the hairstyles he’s had so far in this drama. Though I love the ep 1-16 hair more (minus that part where they make his hair flick up at the ends….who did that?!)

          • Evelyn

            Yeah and the colours were so nice! I’m probably in the minority but I don’t really like So’s current look (oops), I much prefer him with long flowy hair. Oh long-haired njh (with hair over his shoulders) actually made me laugh whenever he appeared. I’m not sure if it was the hair accessory they used.. think it was a feather or sth? But it made him look really, bird-like.

            yeah ljk has been owning every single hairstyle and costume they’ve been using for this drama. le sigh. can the guy just dress like that all the time?

          • pogo

            @Evelyn – I know, they were so pretty! Especially the more gauzey hair ribbons (the kind So was wearing when he took Su on the boat ride), I love how the light filters through the little bits of it peeking out when seen from the side/front. And yeah, like you, when it comes to So’s hair, I am firmly Team Mane of Glory/Ponytail and Hair Ribbons, at all times.

            I mean, he looks stupid-makingly gorgeous even with the imperial bun but the ponytail is the true Wang So hair, and I miss him being 4th prince. I kind of want him to revisit his princely hair once in a while, even after becoming emperor.

          • Yoyo

            Everyone, stop picking on Jung’s sideburns! Those things are bloody BESPOKE!

            ….nah, I’m just kidding, those sideburns are a freaking joke!!!

  35. 35 cherryarrow

    Forgot to mention,

    Yo really has the ugliest handwriting ever. It looked like a 5 yr old wrote that decree.

    I guess I can forgive him since he’s dying. Lawl.

    • 35.1 kumoiwa

      I was actually really surprised that the brush was still full of it, given that it’d been thrown around and rolling about on the floor by the time he actually decided to write that edict.

      • 35.1.1 cherryarrow

        Wouldn’t the ink already have dried? Maybe it’s a magic brush.

        • pogo

          yeah this is some Harry Potter self-inking quill style stuff.

          (more apt since i was thinking about Harry Potter just yesterday and imagining which brothers would go in which house, So would be a Gryffindor for sure)

          • cherryarrow

            OH OH

            So, Baekah, Moo – Gryffindor
            Yo, Won, Wook- Slytherin
            Jung – Hufflepuff

            Soo would maybe in Ravenclaw? Hmmmmm

          • pogo

            @cherryarrow – I pegged Wook as a Ravenclaw, myself – he’s the learned overthinker out of all the princes, and Ravenclaws have plenty of potential to go dark too, if drawn down the wrong path.

            Jung is totally a Hufflepuff.

            Mu (RIP) would have been a Gryffindor, and so would Bae-ah.

            Yo can’t be anything but a Slytherin.

            I think Su would be a Hufflepuff, she even has an interest in plant stuff (Herbology) and well, we know that if nothing else, her loyalties are strong.

            So kind of reminds me of Sirius Black – outcast by his mean family and not sharing the same views as them. Totally a Gryffindor, only instead of a flying motorbike he has a horse.

          • cherryarrow


            HAHA i love your comparison between Sirius Black and So, love it. 😀 Both are very lovable. (Ah Sirius Black *sobs in corner*)

          • pogo

            @cherryarrow – THEY’RE BOTH THE WOLF-DOG TOO.

            This is brilliant.

          • cherryarrow


            OMG YOU’RE RIGHT. -dead-

          • Yoyo

            Sirius Black fell to his death courtesy of his most trusted friend….

            Are we saying Baek-ha gets the privilege of doing the same to So? Lol. The things this show makes us think of!

          • karin

            hahaha this i so good! Has everybody forgotten about Eun though or is he so much of insignicant character that is not to remember (how sad)? Anyway, he can probably be thr Moaning Myrtle of Goryeo, screaming at and scraring Yo in his toilet…

          • pogo

            @Karin – Eun can be Peeves the poltergeist. Harmless but irritating and doesn’t have much in his brain besides amusement/comic relief, but can still register when things are serious.

            Yo is totally Draco Malfoy, complete with crazy parent bringing him up steeped in evil ways, only for him to realise right at the end that power is not all it’s cracked up to be.

  36. 36 Manologirl84

    I feel frustrated and sadden by this episode. I have been getting frustrated with the editing from about episode 8, but I have persevered as I have respect for the effort and work of the actors/actresses (well, most of them anyway) and I still have big hope for this drama.

    But, where’s the climax?? Why does it seem so easy to overthrow the king? The time skips and flashbacks are killing me… I feel disconnected and I’m getting whiplash from trying to infer and assume what was and what was not being told to the viewers.

    The terrible editing is beyond words. I may even start getting violent at this point!!! Lee Joon Gi recently did an interview about his feelings for the poor ratings. The actors/actresses are not to blame. I feel bad for them. The production team should reflect and look back at the fan comments, and take note. Shame.. .. this is a pre-production and yet we are given this???

    I will not abandon the drama though. I have invested too much of my emotion and time to give up! However knowing that Soo’s days are numbered, and So/Soo’s relationship faces obstacles again…..as well as the fact that this drama is coming to an end, I am starting to get heart palpitation like Soo…

    • 36.1 Ren

      Was there actually a time skip? Wook said that by the time he got to Seokyeong, Yo’s uncle was already dead and So’s people put him under house arrest. The change over in King took place while he was still held up in Seokyeong. Does this mean that he was locked up for a year?

    • 36.2 Baek

      he shouldnt blame himself or even feel bad for the rating.. its not his fault.. in fact he was praised by many and most had relatively good comments..

      i cant stand the production/editing team.. where are they hiding?!

  37. 37 Lin_K

    Thank you for the recap!

    My only disappointment is that So’s ascension to throne seemed kinda easy. If we had more time, I would loved to see something more there. Though I don’t know if he could have plotted and fought against Yo directly to take the throne coz the latter died of unknown illness in history. So it’s not like we could have seen Wang So defeating him.

    I liked the OTP moments. It’s better for Su to remain as So’s woman rather than his queen. Then she will get to see him more. I’m afraid of her illness. Don’t wanna see her die. Can she and So jump together into the whirlpool before anything bad happens? Pretty please.

    I am dreading what’s gonna happen tomorrow. YH’s marriage to So, Su’s illness progressing, and possibly her distancing herself from So. I almost don’t wanna watch tomorrow’s episode.

    • 37.1 justsaying

      ‘Can she and So jump together into the whirlpool before anything bad happens? Pretty please.’

      Good one… Wishful Thinking… If only…

  38. 38 Hazelli

    Thanks for the speedy recap. I especially needed them after today’s episode.

    The Dramafever version shows after Yo sees the ghosts, the next scene is So, Baek-ah, and others stealthily rushing out of Yo’s quarters (?). Is that to say So engineered these apparitions to scare Yo or was he hanging around for his revolt? I found this confusing (among other things) and the recaps did not adress this.

    • 38.1 Pei

      it did happen in S-One international version too.
      So revolt is well planned, IMO it’s one of many ways to make sure that Yo died in natural cause (in this scheme is heart attack)
      Yo already in paranoid state, so why not use it?

  39. 39 Mizkorea

    To me Soo sounded patronizing the way she answered Wook’s question. I dont blame him for that revenge. I love that his face remained impassive while he pounded that bracelet. KHN is such a subtle actor. Love him.

    Its like in his head- yeah you claimed its fate, star bla bla. You wanted me to just accept it. Lets see how you handle this fate then.

    Soo just like any 21st century gal thought she can change a man just because they are in relationship.

    • 39.1 justsaying

      I felt the same thing… In fact, I understand why Wook did what he did or at least planned what he’ll do.

  40. 40 bebeswtz

    For everyone who’s still watching this so that they can come here after their viewing just to rant: You’re 17 hours in, get a clue… If all you’re going to do is rant and complain about what you just watched and be all negative, stop./ rant over.

    On to the episode: I kind of do a little chuckle every time another King just abruptly dies from lunacy, now that the Show has done it so many times XD I can’t take this drama device seriously anymore XD
    Wook, if you’re going to complain, and be all sullen and act all heartbroken over Su, GET OVER IT. It’s been years since the 2 of you have broken up, and you were the one who– not only dumped her– you betrayed her in the process when she was literally dying. Speaking of which, Su being in such bad (mental, and therefore, seeping into bad physical) health is not a surprise, and I actually like that they did not wait until the last hour to reveal that her time is limited, because if this plot device of a dying heroine was done at the last hour, I would have to think that it was just the writers getting all drunk again and not having anything else to write about and just using her (eventual) death as last-minute conflict that they plug in; It’s a trope that seriously irks me in K-dramaland: last minute deaths just to build last minute conflict/ tension… The time skip, again, is one that I can gel with, because it moves the story along in showing (but not really) that So had planned for a year for his revolt before letting it happen, yet, again, the writers just made all of that moot by having Yo just drop dead, quite literally lol Yeon Hwa continues to be the power hungry princess that she is, Jung continues to be the pissy prince without a cause that he is, and Baek Ah continues to be so sweet, cute, and kind to our OTP: No wonder So likes him so much and can be at ease with him =) Lastly, MORE SWEET MOMENTS FOR AND WITH OUR OTP, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE <3 Seriously, these two are going to give me cavities with their sweetness, but hey, I ain't gonna complain <3

    • 40.1 Kiara

      I rarely complain about the complainers but I do understand lol.

    • 40.2 savi

      it’s 17 hours, some people probably just complaining now,
      I didn’t remember many username but lot of people who criticize early already leaving early too,

      it’s 17 hours, probably the tight time to make the right comment of what’s wrong without being called too early to make assumption

      • 40.2.1 bebeswtz

        Like you and I have said: it’s 17 hours… We are 17 hours, 17 episodes into the drama…. By now, if the drama were to have any flaws–and “Moon Lovers” has lots, I know, because I’m not oblivious to them, and I also do not believe that any drama is perfect, every drama is flawed in some way— people would and should be over them/used to them by now and it should not be the only thing ppl comment–bash about, really– because at this point, if all you’re doing is bashing the editing and flaws of the drama and not mentioning anything about the actual plot developments (or lack thereof) and characters of the drama that you’re watching and supposedly invested in, story wise, then that means that you truly are just here to bash the drama and feed the trolls without any respect for the other viewers, comment readers, and especially, the overall production/people part of the production (drama actors & crew)… THAT is what irks me…

        • savi

          honestly the critism and the supposed “bash” you said, in this comment section is referred to this ep, EP 17 so why they can’t do it in this recapped?
          the ep is bad and need to be called out,
          if 1 person alwayas find the bad in every ep and write it, that’s fair,
          they write it within the episode,
          every drama is not perfect but so does every episode of Moon Lovers

          the drama people’s love in comment section (when people generally love the episode) is when the emotional side still give a payoff depite the flaw or plot holes,
          but it didn’t happen here, so people can see the technical and the feels criticism from many commenter,

          • bebeswtz

            No, it’s not just this episode, Episode 17 that I am referring to…. It’s all and every episode…

          • Baek

            Its happening in almost if not every episode.. (Bad editing)

            And certain episode with those editing scene, certain missing feelings or parts are actually crucial for us to know “better”.. (It all boils down to that, so im not surprised why complaints on that appears every episode.. in fact, they probably just love the drama as much as we do and feeling unjust over the actors as a result of the poor editing and production.. i seriously dont find it a point to troll or complaint for the sake of complaining on a place where majority dont bother to comment or reply after few days of post..)

    • 40.3 Emmy

      I know what you mean.

      Sure this drama is flawed, but I’m still watching because it really entertains me. It may not have the best editing or storytelling, but I can judge this show on its merits.

      I don’t really care about most of the other characters, but this has one of the better love stories a K-drama. I was totally into Soo-Wook, but the story believably makes a slow transition to So-Soo, and I am completely sold.

      Those two are so wonderful together and have formed such a good support team. I really hope that So is able to keep sane while on the throne, otherwise the next few episodes will have so much pain!

      That said, I am looking forward to how things will be mixed up now that Yeon-Hwa’s in the picture. She’s one of the most consistent characters on the show, and i like the actress in the role.

    • 40.4 Yoyo


      Once upon a time, a few edits ago
      I was on time, watching all alone
      This show duped me, it duped me, it duped me-e-e-ee
      I guess I didn’t care, and I guess the network liked that
      And when I fell hard, I took a step back
      That without it, without it, without it-it-it-iit

      It was long done, no changes for me
      PD realized, the jokes was on him, yay!

      I knew this show was trouble when I played it
      No shame on me now
      It flew me to a place that I’ve never been
      Till it puts me down, oh
      I knew this show was trouble when I watched it
      No shame on me now
      It flew me to a place that I’ve never been
      Now my heart lying on the cold hard ground
      Oh, oh, this show is trouble, trouble
      Oh, oh, this show is trouble trouble

      No apologies from the producers that made you cry
      They pretend that they don’t know, that they’re the reason why
      This show is drowning, drowning, drowning-ing-ing-iing
      Now some viewers have moved on, to MBC’s new hit
      Lee Jun Gi felt really bad when this show never peaked
      And now we see, now we see, now we see-e-e-ee

      It was long done before the complaints came in
      SBS realized that the joke was on them, yay!

      I knew this show was trouble when I played it
      No shame on me now
      It flew me to a place that I’ve never been
      Till it puts me down, oh
      I knew this show was trouble when I watched it
      No shame on me now
      It flew me to a place that I’ve never been
      Now my heart lying on the cold hard ground
      Oh, oh, this show is trouble, trouble
      Oh, oh, this show is trouble trouble

      • 40.4.1 Yoyo


        And my saddest fear, comes creeping in
        That Su never loved So, or Wook, or anyone in Goryeoooo

        I knew this show was trouble when I streamed it
        There’s no shame in me now
        It flew me to a place that I’ve never been
        Watching till it pulls me down, oh
        I knew this show was trouble when I streamed it
        No shame left in me now
        It flew me to a place that I’ve never been
        Now my hearts lying on this cold hard ground
        Oh, oh, this show is trouble, trouble
        Oh, oh, this show is trouble, trouble, trouble

      • 40.4.2 voice

        thank you for this! you’re brilliant

      • 40.4.3 pogo

        lmao I’m choking rn

  41. 41 Lucifermeo

    Thanks for the recap!

    This episode is rushing everything so much I feel like pulling a Yo/Soo by the end of this and collapse from elevated heart rate. So many things happen but I just want to comment on all te blame game riddling the episode because it s both hilarious and kinda aggravating at the same time.

    Of course now, we cannot start our blame game without the King of Blame, dear Wookie. Funnily enough, he has stopped annoying me with all his delusions because it’s just so damn pathetic and sad at this point that the guy still refuses to see that where he is today comes from his own choice in the past. Who knows, if you hadn’t abandon Soo for DEATH, she might have chosen you for KING (not very likely, but still). Guess that’s why even the star and your mother abandons you, Wook. Grow up already. Oh and on that note, the scar thing was such a LOW, low move. Both you and So were there, you should’ve known Soo’s pain first hand. Such classic A-hole move: if I can’t have it no one can have it either ughhh.

    But it’s ok Wook, I have found a character that I needs off the screen more ASAP than you. JUNG you USELESS piece of a brother and friend, you need to go man. After all this time and you still blame So for causing all the fighting???? What even?!?!?! The level of blindness of this guy omg, and you want to take Soo from the palace?? No freaking thank you, she was perfectly fine cuddling with her bf before your useless appearance!aofjbvdksaofj ….

    Ok, let’s calm down. *breathes deeply and asks the gods to give me strength to ignore Jung*

    Moving on to the last blame of the episode, I actually find Yo’s the most legit among all the blame game. Soo is the catalyst here, her actions this episode pretty much solidify this. Even though unintentionally, she pretty much triggered So’s transformation, Yo’s ascension to the throne and the revival of Wook’s ambition. Lol, she bore witness to THREE kings’ deaths now, so the blame on her is pretty solid reasoning haha. Only except that even without Soo, I’m sure Queen SMSS would have driven all of her kids crazy some days, given her insane levels of evilness lol.

    All in all, I have come to ignore the horrible editing (isn’t brain plasticity a wonderful thing :v) and manage to enjoy the majority of the episode. Definitely wish they could either cut some of the first 10 eps so all this fighting can take place with more details and characters’ motivation lol, or maybe expand to 24 eps … alas, it is what it is.

    • 41.1 mary

      I don’t know why but the meltdowns amuse me… this and cali’s up there XD

  42. 42 Lizzie

    Once again I am glad I watched the original because man would I be confused. They are keeping to the original pretty closely only unconvincingly so.. I mean could you at least make Su look like she was near death.. I hope they have her wasting away to make it believable..because honestly that is the thing I’m most upset about. She appearance has barely changed since she got there. Though it’s been what 10 years or so? Lol. But I guess that goes for everyone. No one looks a day older than when they began except Queen (really long ass name) but she isn’t consistent at all (her wigs..man..the stylists probably did it for shits and giggles.

    • 42.1 Ruby

      Soo needs to start looking pallid and sickly soon since there’s only three episodes left.

      I think Queen Nasty Mother wanted to rule the throne through her sons. But she found out that Yo wasn’t such a puppet so she wanted Jung to take over since he’s such a Mama’s boy and couldn’t stand up to her. Too bad for her So got the throne instead.

      I hope someone poisons her or she gets exiled to a tiny island haunted by Court Lady Oh.

      • 42.1.1 Lizzie

        Lol. I’m all for exiling her to be haunted by Lady Oh!

        I forgot there were only 3 eps left. I find that hilarious. maybe there will be a few time skips to make IU look believably near death..

  43. 43 Grapes

    My version of the ending that she will die in goryo then she wakes up in the future again, maybe the time has stopped there for her at the same place she drowned in, or she will wake up from a coma after falling in the water, then she will meet another So maybe he’s her doctor or while walking in the streets. 😬

    • 43.1 Ruby

      If so, I wish future So will somehow retain some of the feelings his past self had for her.

      If they’re supposed to be soul mates, the love might still be there after 1000 years. Hopefully. Poor girl deserves to be with her guy without some biyatch trying to snag him.

      I do like naive, dunderhead Hae Soo. She was just a regular girl used by fate as a cog to move history. She tried to survive the best way she can, mostly by going with the flow. As she said, “It’s not a crime to want to live.”

      But she couldn’t really fit in with the snakes, wolves and foxes that live in the cesspit that is the palace. Being a modern day sassy gal gets you nowhere in Goryeo especially if you have no money, no major clan backing and no title.
      Love is a luxury few can ill afford.

  44. 44 Cocoboo

    I’ve only seen the international version, but there was no clue to who was spying on Chae Ryung and Won after their scene. I was very curious. And it was later on that we saw the scene where Su spoke to So about CR’s plea to keep her job in Damiwon. It didn’t look like he had any suspicion about her.

    Anyway, I need to watch the SBS version ….. /duh. xP

  45. 45 uchie

    can’t we get happy ever after both in goryeo and modern era? because this drama too much to endure. Heartache, headache, crying and definetly make me stress… 3 more episode…

  46. 46 Cocoboo

    Did anyone feel like So was faking his nightmare scare in the scene where he hugged Su afterwards and cuddled with her in bed (in the INTL version)?

    That little part made me chuckle. But the SBS version seems so different. xP

    • 46.1 transient

      The nightmare scene in the international version seemed so random and fake, unlike the longer scene in SBS where So’s pain seemed more real and elaborate.

  47. 47 blu

    I feel like the intl version (which I saw) suggested some things that weren’t fully clear to me.. In the last scene when wook came on, did the nobles stop coming to court or something because So/Gwangjong centralized the army and taxes?! lol a bit confused.

    on a side note though, I think I had heart palpitations of my own when LJG came on screen with the armor <3 <3

    • 47.1 Ruby

      I think it is foreshadowing what So will later do in his reign. King Gwangjong went after the noble families. I don’t know how many he killed though.

  48. 48 olaide

    What is wrong with yeon hwa first she wanted 2 become gueen and now she want her son to be on the throne

    • 48.1 cherryarrow

      Well to have power as a Queen, you should have a son who would become Crown Prince, then the King. That’s how you get power lol.

      • 48.1.1 transient

        She needs a son as king to cement her position. A dowager queen whose son is not the next king is is precarious position of being axed in any given time by the next king

  49. 49 chocopie

    I just loooove how evil queen didn’t bother to make excuses at Yo when he confronted her if he was only an object to her. Instead she just keeps pestering him on what SHE wants, completely disregarding him. That woman is the definition of effed up at its best.

    and then we see queen sinjeong, who turns out to actually have the same degree of ambitions as evil queen, but rather than turning her allies into mere chess pieces, she makes sure that they all have the exact same insight as her.

    imagine if queen sinjeong had been in evil queen’s position perhaps goryeo wouldve been ruled by queens instead of kings~

    • 49.1 pogo

      Queen Sinjeong might not be as openly able to move chess pieces as Queen SMSS, but she’s far more dispassionate and capable of playing the long game and making it look all above board and legtimate.

      And it’s pretty cool that you can see the effect of that mindset on Wook and Yeonhwa too – Wook especially didn’t become the way he is in a vacuum (that goes for both gentle, propriety-obsessed Prince Charming Wook as well as Darth Wook)

      • 49.1.1 chocopie

        Her being casted away from palace definitely influenced her carefulness. Also that the unfair treatment was witnessed by Wook and Yeonhwa, making all of them always wary of power..?

        I have always believed that Wook had always had it in him this obsession to power. Just that he was used to keeping it hidden, so much that he believed in the illusions he made himself~

        While Yeonhwa, being the more moody one (got it from the dad maybe).. in the earlier episodes Wook and mom had to repeatedly tell her to be more proper.

        Also, all these times I thought it would be Yeonhwa who would be pestering Wook how unfair it would be for So and Soo to have everything, but turned out he was motivated himself lol

  50. 50 Ruby

    I’m just reading the recaps at this point and planning to watch episodes 16 to 20 as a mini marathon later.

    I apologize for the following rant but I just want to get this off my chest.

    I get it that a lot of people’s expectations about this show have not been met. So why do you punish yourself by still watching what to you is a wasted effort by a director, the crew and the cast?

    I see the flaws of the show too but there seem to be folks who just spew bile about it every week. Why invest your precious time on a show you already decided was dreck but yet you still tune in every week?

    And why do people still keep comparing this show to the Chinese drama when the cast, the setting, the episode length, the writers and the director are NOT the same? Think of the Korean version as being very loosely based on the original work and don’t stress about it so much. It is just a show.

    • 50.1 bebeswtz

      + 1000000000000000000000000000


      This is exactly what I've been saying in most, if not all, of my comments/posts since I can remember for "Moon Lovers": people need to stop. If you're 4-5 episodes in and you're not getting the emotional and entertainment payoff that you want from a show, STOP WATCHING. Honestly, the posts/comments for all the duration of "Moon Lovers" from a lot of the commentators, to me–and not to be judgemental, since I get that Dramabeans is an open community for opinions, but yea, I'M GONNA BE JUDGEMENTAL– have surpassed the "being constructively critical as a viewer" point and I KNOW FOR A FACT that people are just watching the Show JUST so that they can come here after to rant and bash everything about it. BASHING IS NOT BEING "CONSTRUCTIVELY CRITICAL", it's called 'being a d***'. I'm not gonna try to stop people who want to be masochists and hurt themselves by watching a show they can't stand, but don't come here after watching something that you hate and bash about it, and in the process, ruin the experience of reading the comments for those who DO care and like the Show, flaws and all ^.^

    • 50.2 pogo

      I’m going to quote @candiceraine on the second page here:

      Wow, this show. I don’t know what type of voodoo magic you used, but with all the flaws and bad editing, i’m still freakin’ soooo invested on you. dang.

      and I think that sums up why most of us are still here, criticisms and all. The experience of watching this drama is like a tv-viewer version of seeing a great painting buried under detritus that blocks anything more than a few glimpses of the original canvas from view, you know there is something good under all the rubbish but it’s hard not to be frustrated by the fact that it’s even there in the first place.

      • 50.2.1 Ira

        Ditto. Part of it is also because of LJK. Well, a huge part of it, lol. However, because the drama is so batshit crazy, all of us also need an outlet to let out our frustration for our sanity. Hence all the criticism. For me, part of the enjoyment of watching this show is reading all the funny ranting in this thread. It helps soothe my bruised heart for LJK.

        • pogo

          Seriously that’s what upsets me most about this drama – it could have been GREAT. And that it isn’t, is entirely down to preventable reasons (seriously, this is pre-produced?!)

          • Ira

            I wonder whether someone from the production team had ever tried watching the whole thing before it got aired. If they didn’t, curse them for unleashing this half-baked effort to us. If they did, how can someone in their right mind think that this is acceptable for airing. And I agree, that this drama couldve been GREAT. And it has its moments like ep 11. I kept hoping for that magic to happen again, but so far it has been a let down *sadface*

          • pogo

            @Ira I want to take SBS collectively by the collar and shake them. I mean, this is one of your major dramas of the year and no one thought to check on the final product BEFORE it aired/was sold?

      • 50.2.2 Ruby

        I think the producers will have a better show they can sell as a box set if they hire another editor who will add the deleted scenes, fix the continuity problems, add voice overs etc.

        I wouldn’t mind watching the show again.

        Of course Jung will still have his terrible wig and that exiled ex princess still can’t act her way out of a paperback.

        But there are good actors in this show. Lee Jung ki, Wook, Queen McNally, Court Lady Oh, Wook’s sister. The actor who played Yo did well in the later episodes.

        Lee Jung Ki should get some decent work in American shows or movies. He is so talented. Too bad there are few roles for Asians here.

        • Ruby

          I meant the exiled princess can’t act her way out of a paper bag.

      • 50.2.3 Fanngy

        Oh my god yes, exactly. It was a beautiful build up all the way up to when Lady Oh died where the themes of politics and survival and love were so starkly shown. As much as the chemistry between the main love interests, what sucked me in was the political manuveuring and power struggles going on in the background (YH, Evil Queen Mother, Yo, So, Lady Oh, Ji Mong and King Taeju being the key players) which I thought was really intriguing as it presented women as formidable and influencial players in the game, despite their lack of direct power

        I think what frustrates most people is that this show had so much promise and despite the messy plot there were moments of true brilliancy (Lady Oh’s episode, YH accusing Yo of men trying to control women by marriage, smexy scene where Soo covers up So’s scar and he does the sassiest rain walk ever etc)

        I for one, am still invested because of all the points I mentioned above – wonderful build up, characters that made me care, surprisingly politically astute scenes – and like a druggie I am still holding out for my next hit and am getting increasingly cranky the longer it takes.

        It is sad because this drama had all the ingredients to be amazing – good actors (well on a scale of Seolhyun to the consistently brilliant Lee Joon Gi), a tried and tested story line that did well previously, unexpectedly engaging side characters (such as Lady Oh and Soon Deuk) and really pretty actors and sets.

        I genuinely think the actors and script writers did the best they could and a pretty good job. That’s why people are having such strong reactions to their disappointment. If the show was merely badly acted and badly written people would be more indifferent. But I think people see how good the show could have been had it not been for the sloppy and incoherent editing and that’s why they are reacting this way because it’s unfair to the actors and audience alike who have already invested so much time and effort into the show.

        Personally I think the show tried to cram in too many elements and that’s why so many crucial plot points get forgotten or glossed over. They have like 8 royal heirs to focus on in addition to Su and important background characters such as the queen mothers and Chaeryung. I feel it was too ambitious to cram all the relevant plot points into 20 episodes when it took the Chinese version about 35 episodes to do the same. It is no wonder the storyline is choppy and parts are left unexplained. There was simply no time to resolve all the plot threads in a satisfying manner. The biggest tragedy of this is Wook. As many of you have pointed out he is a shrewd politician who would have made a worthy adversary for the throne against So. He is also interestingly complex in his righteous justifications and a buried hunger for power under a serene disposition. I weep for the character development he would have had had there been more time, especially considering how talented Kang Ha Neul is 🙁

        • Xer

          I agree with you! I think the main problem with this drama is it is too short. The story would flow better if they had more episodes. I think the only character who they really developed is the 4th prince. Even so, i found that his development into a ruthless king is lacking. There were not enough scenes to explain why he has become like that when he is dealing with the political issues.

          While for the rest (other supporting characters), their character development is even more lacking. The scenes of princess Woohee has been edited out a lot in international version. It makes me wonder if her character is even necessary in the drama. By watching more of her scenes in SBS version, at least i know she has more reasons to be 3rd prince’s spy. It is still not enough though. Also, not enough scenes to justify Chae Ryung’s love to 9th prince except the first glance she gave to him when she was beaten by princess yeonghwa in the earlier episode. Oh and besides that, how easy it is to put 9th prince as a scheming guy hiding behind 3rd & 8th prince. Initially he was just a prince with evil sense of humour. Oh and one more thing, the sudden crush from 14th prince to Soo when he treated her as sister before that.

          Maybe Wook is right~ it is fair to not have everything~ so, it is fair for the audience to pick some flaws of this drama although this drama has good actors and actresses and interesting storyline xD

    • 50.3 Kiara

      I’m here for Lee Jun-ki and Kang Han-na. I have nothing to complain about them.

      You shouldn’t apologize for ranting. We all rant because nothing is perfect and we are not perfect either.

      • 50.3.1 pogo

        @Kiara – I saw someone claim on kkuljaem that Seohyun has a good sageuk tone. And that it’s better than Kang Hanna’s.

        All I could think was that you’d probably bust a gut laughing at that level of delusion.

        • kumoiwa

          I’m crying in either anguish or second hand embarrassment, I can’t tell. This person has to be deaf.

          • pogo

            @kumo – either that or an idol fan. I’ve noticed fans of the crappy idol-actors tend to be extra defensivex10000 about any criticism of their acting abilities, but the claim about the sageuk tone was…. let’s just say I wondered if it was Opposite Day.

        • Gehrel

          I’m no professional critic of k-dramas, with my resume of sageuk dramas started with Chuno and not up-to-date with the sageuk genre since then …

          … But even I can tell that Kang Han-na’s performance has been constant since the very first episode.

          She acted the heck out of her meagre scenes. I’m just glued and sucked into her acting.

          I’m a fan of Seohyun, just not when it comes to acting.

        • Kiara

          It’s so easy to see flaws in sageuk even some good actors even veteran actors have failed to deliver.

          Woo-hee’s storyline is making sense now since they point out that she was Gyeon Hwon’s (Hubaekje’s first king) granddaughter. That would make her King Gyeon Singeom’s daughter.
          (If only *sigh*. Even Gong Seung-yeon would have sufficed).

          When all else fail the actors are left to carry the show and their performance (good or bad) is what we remember.

          • Gehrel

            Oops, meant to reply you here but accidentally reply below you.

            … Gong Seung-yeon starring in a sageuk in which she’s a top star being transported into Joseon era … seriously.

            Time-travelling actress dumped into ancient Joseon.

            I pray to K-drama deities that her character watches this show and learns what NOT to do when you suddenly find yourself in a different period.

      • 50.3.2 Gehrel

        @Kiara, this is not even up to Secret Door’s level. I mean, the politics in that drama was so-and-so, but Park Eun-bin, Lee Je-hoon and Han Seok-kyu carried that show on their sheer performance.

        Even the boy playing Yi San nailed his scenes. I mean, my heart broke for the boy wailing to see his father before he entered the rice box.

        … Gong Seung-yeon (if only she traded her newer fusion sageuk for this, it might be a small consolation). I think it’s time for me to rewatch that monsterous 50 episode SFD.

        • Kiara

          I agree! I love following good solid actors because if the show turns out to be crappy they still shine even though they couldn’t save the show and I still get some enjoyment out of it.

          I was skeptical of Gong Seung-yeon because I’ve never seen her in a sageuk before and Bang-won’s queen was well known for being politically savvy.
          She had a very limited screen time but she made the best out of it.

          I’m grateful that we have quality shows from the past to rewatch and appreciate.

    • 50.4 happychou

      Well said! It’s just a show, we all can rant about it but to repeat saying it’s a wreck each week is tiring. Every drama has its flaws after all.

    • 50.5 transient


      It make me sad reading harsh criticism and hatred towards a show that I hold dear. I am not saying that everyone should start singing praises and not to utter a word of complaint. I am okay with criticism, even strong ones when backed with proper argument, but don’t just criticize it harshly as if the show is 100% rotten.

      I know this show is far from perfect, with all the choppy editing, ridiculous bgm and massive amount of unnecessary close ups, but calling this show simply as crap is too harsh when it has so many actors with great acting capabilities, beautiful shots and some underlying reflections of a part of us in the characters.

      So let’s play nice, shall we?

    • 50.6 Gem

      Its called one’s choice. Frankly people have the right to choosing how they want to utilize or waste their own precious time be it by watching and criticizing or watching and praising.

      • 50.6.1 Ruby

        There is a big difference between criticism and just badmouthing something.

        I’m not saying don’t find fault with the show. I just do not understand how folks watch it to keep continually tearing it down. Why subject yourself to something that pains you?

        Sure you have the right to spend your time however the way you want. The inverse is also true. Others also have the right to spend their time the way they want which includes questioning how others spend their time.

        I am not trying to pick a fight.

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