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Six Flying Dragons: Episode 41

Things could only stay the way they were for so long, and now comes what can only be the beginning of the trials sure to face our beleaguered dragons. Beset upon by all sides, our misunderstood hero is faced with a decision with two seemingly losing options—but leave it up to Bang-won to turn a disadvantageous situation into a very advantageous one. Because for as smart as he is, Jung Do-jeon should probably know by now that when it comes to Bang-won, you can’t even kill it with fire.

SONG OF THE DAY

Lee Ji-yoo – “두 눈을 가려도 (Cover My Two Eyes)” from the OST [ Download ]

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EPISODE 41 RECAP

While Shin-jeok and Cho-young are mercilessly tortured for being caught in the wrong place at the wrong time, Bang-won seems to just be confined to his quarters for now. He knows Jung Do-jeon has no solid evidence against him, and knows just as well that won’t stop him.

The lack of evidence won’t stop his father either, who sees Bang-won being in the same place as a known Nameless spy as reason enough to suspect him. Jo Joon has his doubts, but he’s outweighed by Jung Do-jeon and his followers—one being SHIM HYO-SAENG, Lee Bang-seok’s father-in-law. (The little prince was married very, very young.)

Since Cho-young and Shin-jeok are sort of in this torture thing together, she devises a plan to use the contacts he has left to get a message to the outside world/Nameless. She tries commiserating with him, which just turns into a rant against Yeon-hee on his part. If it weren’t for her, he all but froths at the mouth, he wouldn’t be here.

Ha Ryun pays a visit to elder brothers Bang-gwa and Bang-gan, warning them that the same thing that happened to their little brother can happen to them if they don’t take preventative measures now. Jung Do-jeon is making a concerted effort to rid royal family members of their private armies, so they’ll be next.

His advice is for them to go through Ji-ran to present a petition to the king, asking that he make Bang-won’s investigation an official matter to be discussed in court. He’s counting on the king to not go through with the investigation at all, since it’ll only further serve to destabilize the royal family.

Meanwhile, Bang-won goes to his father to plead for him to receive an official interrogation with Cho-young, claiming that he must do it in order to prove his innocence. His father is more than skeptical at first when his son pulls out the “I just can’t please you!” card, and flat-out asks him if he wants to become the crown prince.

Because if he does, his father warns, he’ll have to fight against his own brother, father, and Jung Do-jeon. Bang-won doesn’t answer that question directly, and instead chooses to look pitiful as he asks how his father could even think him capable of such a terrible thing.

The tide turns when his father accuses him of harboring a terrible greed, all while advising him to let go of it while he still can. Bang-won’s barely suppressed rage comes to the fore as he asks why only his dreams are considered greedy—he (his father) never dreamed of being king, but now he is. His little brother never dreamed of being crown prince, but now he is.

So why is it that he can’t dream of bigger things? Why are his dreams so terrible? “If you still believe that I am a part of Nameless,” he adds after regaining some composure, “You will have to prove it.” Joseon mic drop!

Word has spread that Boon-yi plans to leave for Banchon (the servant village near Sungkyunkwan) among high and low born alike, which means Yeon-hee is finally happy with a decision Boon-yi’s made. She sees this as a good move for her, and tsks that Bang-won’s greed has gotten out of control.

Unknowingly repeating the same thought that Bang-won had earlier, Moo-hyul asks why only Bang-won’s greed is regarded so terribly. Yeon-hee doesn’t have a good answer for that and he knows it, but he just can’t formulate the words to call her out on it. As for what’ll happen to Bang-won, Yeon-hee says Jung Do-jeon will make sure he can’t participate in politics.

Afterward, Moo-hyul sighs that both he and Boon-yi aren’t in a position to get involved with these kinds of problems. She agrees that it should be that way, but doesn’t seem to believe it herself. More pressing though is her decision to move, which she worries will leave Moo-hyul disappointed.

He assures her that he’s not at all disappointed in her decision, but more the larger situation at hand. “But if there is one thing I know, it’s that now is the time to make a decision.” As for him, he’s decided on Bang-won, but he wants her to trust in the decision she’s already made. Aw, why didn’t you two ever get the loveline we were promised?

Cho-young eventually convinces Shin-jeok to pass a letter through his ally, though he ends up damning himself in the process when his ally betrays him, and instead delivers the letter to Jung Do-jeon. But then the ally-turned-spy tells Jung Do-jeon that Shin-jeok was successful? Wait, what?

We rewind back to a discussion between Jung Do-jeon and Shin-jeok, predicting and planning for this exact sequence of events. Even knowing that he’d be tortured for the believability of the plan, Shin-jeok had been all too willing to offer himself in order to wipe Nameless off the face of the earth.

So Bang-won’s initial suspicions about him had been correct, and Jung Do-jeon had planned all those encounters between Shin-jeok and Bang-won in order to soften Bang-won toward him. This is all part of Jung Do-jeon’s plan to arrest the higher-ups in Nameless that they couldn’t get to before, and making sure that Bang-won really can’t return to politics will be next on the list. (Along with eradicating anyone who could possibly restore Goryeo.)

Bang-ji leads a group of soldiers after the trail of breadcrumbs left by the Hwasadan spy currently following the Nameless spy who retrieved Cho-young’s letter from the drop point (phew, what a mouthful), but she’s waylaid by Gil Sun-mi.

He cuts her down without a fight, and somehow gets behind the advancing army before returning to Yeon-hyang to tell her that they’ve been exposed. Oh no, not their one dilapidated room!

Yooksan makes his getaway while Bang-ji and his men search for the Nameless hideout after finding their Hwasadan operative dead. He ends up at the mouth of a suspicious cave and goes inside, finding none other than his mother standing there waiting for him.

He recognizes her instantly: “I wanted to see you so badly… I looked for you for so long, yet here is where I found you.” His next question, asked in a halting voice, is “Did you really abandon us?” He says he couldn’t do what his sister said she said and just forget about her, no matter how hard he tried.

But his mother delivers the final blow when she confesses that she did tell Boon-yi exactly those words. Bang-ji’s face crumples with tears as he blames his mother for everything. He met Jung Do-jeon because he was looking for her. He learned how to wield a sword while looking for her. “But you never looked for us. You didn’t leave. You abandoned us.”

At least Yeon-hyang doesn’t deny that fact, though admitting to it seems to hurt him all the more. She’s not going to try to mend their broken relationship now, and has only appeared in front of him to give him one warning: “Leave Jung Do-jeon.”

Though he has great ideas, they’re not sustainable for a real country, she argues. He cuts her off before she can finish her thought about he and Boon-yi both believing in Jung Do-jeon’s ideology, since he claims to be different from his sister. He doesn’t buy into the ideas, but because Boon-yi does, he’ll stake his life to protect what she believes in. No matter what.

Which means, as Yeon-hyang aptly notes, that he’ll end up going directly against his own mother. Bang-ji cries at this very thought but stands by his decision, even when she tells him that the only way he can truly protect his sister’s dream is by killing her, Nameless’ leader, now. Ugh, what a cheap shot, Yeon-hyang.

“If you can’t choose to leave Sambong, then you must kill me,” Yeon-hyang reiterates. But she’ll be nice and leave that option permanently open for him so that whenever he wants to kill her, he can. The only sin she’ll admit to is the sin of turning his once innocent heart into a living hell for him, and adds a message for him to give to Jung Do-jeon: “Nameless will not disappear, even if he captures everyone. We… are the heart of the people.”

Jung Do-jeon is understandably upset that his men failed to capture any high-ranking Nameless operatives, while Yeon-hee’s testimony is used to confirm Cho-young’s ties to Nameless and the extent of her crimes.

They also obtain Cho-young’s confession that Nameless has been involved with the deposed King Gongyang since his exile because they were the ones to put him on the throne, which is all they need to petition the king to execute Gongyang and his entire family.

In a moment of privacy with the prisoner, Yeon-hee and Cho-young reminisce over old times—like when Cho-young found her on the street, wandering and starving, and saved her. When Cho-young asks how she could betray her after that, a tearful Yeon-hee says it’s because she wanted to live.

Having to sell her smile to men and trick them into believing she loved them just to snatch intel from them wasn’t a life, Yeon-hee adds. Having to kill people on top of all that wasn’t a life either: “The one who truly saved me was Lord Sambong.”

As for Cho-young’s concern that she could be taken advantage of by Jung Do-jeon, Yeon-hee claims it doesn’t matter, since she shares the same dream. She uses wisdom Cho-young once gave her about life and death, remarking on how wonderful it is that she’s able to dream while she’s alive, and thanks Cho-young for being there when she needed her. And with that, she bids her once-savior farewell.

Bang-won goes on a hunger strike in an effort to have his father approve his investigation into Cho-young, and it only works because Ji-ran helps to convince King Taejo.

Cho-young seems to figure out that Shin-jeok’s playing her before she reveals any more damning information, and calls him out for his subterfuge. This is bad for him and Jung Do-jeon since Bang-won is on his way for the interrogation, so Shin-jeok stands on shaky feet, stumbles over to Cho-young, and wraps his hands around her throat.

His man buys time outside, keeping Bang-won at bay just long enough for Shin-jeok to choke the life out of Cho-young. Shin-jeok has to explain what happened to Jung Do-jeon in a short period of time, so in an effort to cover it up, Jung has her thrown in a prison cell so it’ll look like a suicide.

Bang-won doesn’t believe it, but he’s not given much of a choice. “How did you kill Cho-young?” he asks of Jung Do-joen later. Then, “Are you going to kill me too? Is that not what you plan to do anyway?” Jung Do-jeon takes the “Who, me?” approach coined earlier this episode by Bang-won himself, and it almost seems to work.

Making it sound like he’s got Bang-won’s best interests at heart, Jung Do-jeon entreats him to just spend five years in exile. In five years, he’ll have stabilized the country for Bang-won’s return, but Bang-won knows that he needs those five years for Bang-seok to become an adult.

“I have to save you even if I must do it like this,” Jung Do-jeon claims. “Then try it,” Bang-won challenges. So he does, by going to the king to ask him to assign Bang-won to a faraway provincial post.

Even King Taejo agrees that five years away would be good for Bang-won, but doesn’t get to make that order before Officer Nam arrives with news—Japanese pirates, captured by the Ming, confessed that they were just acting as spies on behalf of Joseon. In order to rectify the matter with Ming, they’ll have to send a prince to explain matters personally.

Jo Joon, Ha Ryun, Officer Nam, and Daddy Min are all in agreement that to send a prince to the Ming would mean sending him to his death. Jung Do-jeon sees King Taejo struggling under the weight of this decision and thinks to himself, “Your Highness, I will take on the role of the villain. Do not worry.”

Again, he goes to Bang-won and acts like he’s appealing to his rational self, and gives him a choice between going into exile for five years or going to Ming as an envoy. He claims it’s because King Taejo knows that Bang-won is the only one who can convince the Ming Court, which actually seems to work? Aw, is it because Bang-won wants so badly to believe his father thinks something of him?

It may be that, but Bang-won seems to recognize the irony in all this by laughing hysterically for a good while. Then, he decides he’d rather go to Ming than be stuck in a province for five years. After all, he may actually convince the Ming emperor and return home wreathed in laurels and glory.

He’s surprised to find his father outside, who’s overheard everything. He agrees with the notion that Bang-won could come home in glory, prompting a formal and acquiescing bow from Bang-won. He keeps his hands and his lips clenched tightly shut until he’s outside, and only then does he release the sigh he’s been holding.

That night he dons black and takes a slo-mo walk, coming upon Boon-yi burning books. He wraps his arms around her from behind and surprises her, but when she turns, he tells her to go to Banchon no matter what. She asks what’s caused the sudden change, before wondering if he wants her gone so he can be free to embrace his beastly heart instead of his human one. (She’s not being mean, he’s used these exact words before.)

But she wishes that weren’t the case, because she can’t leave him for Banchon while still worrying about him. Tears fill his eyes as he implores her to let him think that no matter what happens to him, even if he were to die, she’d be somewhere with a smile on her face. “Please, let me think that way,” he asks, as he closes his eyes against the onslaught of tears.

In answer, Boon-yi reminds him of the reason she first came to like him, back when they were friends. “Because you did not think that I would die [easily],” he answers, bringing a small smile of farewell to both their faces.

Some time later, Bang-won and his party arrive at the gates of the Liaodong Fortress. Though they declare themselves as envoys, they’re swiftly arrested by the Ming, leaving him, Ha Ryun, Master Hong, and Moo-hyul all sitting on the ground with ropes around their torsos.

Somehow the scene ends up being pretty funny, with Ha Ryun reluctantly translating the words of the Ming man come to meet them. They’re accused of taking in the Jurchens, a big no-no to the Ming, which is what Jung Do-jeon was actually doing in secret.

Ha Ryun is equally reluctant to translate Bang-won’s response to this, seeing as how his life hangs on whatever Bang-won will say next. He’s forced to translate Bang-won’s informal “You, do you want to die?” which gets about the intended reaction when the Ming man grabs him by the collar and demands his name.

“I am Lee Bang-won. Who are you?” Bang-won says, translated by Ha Ryun. But what the man says next sends Ha Ryun into fits, since he says he is ZHU DI, also known as The Yongle Emperor, soon to be the third emperor of the Ming Dynasty.

 
COMMENTS

Now that’s a face that’s going to haunt my nightmares. It’s going to be interesting to see how this show shapes the events that could’ve happened during Bang-won’s trip to Ming—there’s not a whole lot of information on the excursion other than that it happened, so it seems like Dragons is going to take that hole in history and use it to Bang-won’s homecoming advantage.

But at this rate, they’ve got a lot of history to burn through in what feels like a short span of time left ahead of us, since the logical endpoint seems to be when Bang-won finally assumes the throne. Anything less than that and we’d probably leave feeling disappointed, even though it seems like even the best of montages wouldn’t necessarily cover all the ground that needs to be covered. That’s a problem for another day though, and one I’m sure this production team has well in hand.

I was glad to see Bang-ji given more than a few moments of screen time this hour, because his is a character that started with so much potential and never actually lost it, but was just given so little time to display it that he may as well have. Where even Moo-hyul has been able to grow and make big boy decisions, Bang-ji has been stuck living in the past, and has been equally stuck in the same perpetually morose emotional rut. It’s really a shame that they’ve secluded him from interactions with any of the other major characters, instead sticking him with side characters and a lack of dialogue. He probably said more in this episode than he has in the last ten combined, come to think of it. But is it so bad to want more Bang-ji?

So while we got a small peek into his thoughts during his reunion scene, it still felt just a little incomplete, considering that we weren’t privy to any of the essential aftermath. He has a real-life sister he can go talk to about this stuff, and while their mother is a sore subject, I doubt she would’ve advised him to do anything different during that encounter. Boon-yi can be cold, but telling him that he should’ve just killed their mother when he had the chance (except not really, because Gil Sun-mi was there), doesn’t seem like the sort of thing she’d say.

Even though, when it does come to their mother, Boon-yi is capable of much more rationale than her brother. I’m with her on disavowing their mother entirely, since she was never a mother to them—and it’s still unexplained as to why she even bothered being their mother for ten years, only to one day just… stop. Setting up the conflict with Yeon-hyang being their mother but also the leader of Nameless kind of comes off as extraneous, then, when she could have just as much conflict with strangers who aren’t her children for all the attention she pays to that fact.

Perhaps this rift in ideology, even if there’s just no earthly way to figure out Nameless’ core ideology at this point (“We are the heart of the people” is a new one, I’ll give them that), would’ve carried more weight had mother and children been closer. Or even if they’d been estranged, if Yeon-hyang secretly yearned to reunite with them, we could probably care more. But right now we’re given zero reason to sympathize with her when the only crime she confesses to is that of destroying Bang-ji… before then proceeding to destroy him with the worst choice imaginable.

Which I guess all goes to say: She’s just the worst. Poor Boon-yi and Bang-ji deserve better.

 
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That hug! THAT hug!! It was so brief but my heart skipped a beat!

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I demand a slo-mo backhug *pouts

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the FEELS.... O_____O

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yes you said it, THE FEELS in this episode....looove it!!
BW-BY is the best couple!!!
Boon Yi may not be the queen, but she's the queen in Bang Won and people's heart.

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Ha Ryun is hilarious. I'm so happy he's in this show!

I just came here after watching 42 so I'll shut up for now. Or maybe I'll just scream one thing.

MOOHYUL!!!!!!!!!!!

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You and me both! These two episodes rock - and I had chills in 42. MOO HYUL !

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MOOHYUL KILLED ME IN EP 42 I'M AN EMOTIONAL WRECK I'M !!! ugh ><

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Yuuup ep 42 is all for Moo Hyul! I was expecting for the sixth dragon title card, but did it come up already? Maybe i missed it in the earlier episodes

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I haven't watched this episode yet (will though, soon). Ugh...but I'll forever miss these two. I know there's no space in history for the fictional BY, but...but...I want them to be together...

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Still hanging on for Moo-hyul although I'm not as excited about his dragon episode like I use to. So tired of waiting for it episode after episode.

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Moo Hyul shines in ep 42!!

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Boon Yi is AWESOME in this episode!!! as a shipper my heart still wants their hug scene more longer but Boon Yi is once again proving that she knows her position. I loooove their dialogue, It's bitter sweet love but their love for each other is so strong. Such a beautiful and heartwrenching scene. Please writer-nim don't make them separate!!
This episode is also much better without Lady Min Da Kyung. Can Bang Won just divorce her? I don't care about her and she annoys me lately, her appearance just doesn't make any assistance to Bang Won at all.

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LOL.. Divorce her? Then the writer totally gonna destroy the history. It's just too bad that writer didn't focus on her real life story and what she did for Bang Won...

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Why not?? In history, Bang Won also NEVER love Min Da Kyung, it's just political marriage and SFD is a drama after all, it's fiction, writer-nim can do everything they want.

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Because it doesn't make sense at all to destroy a great figure in history for some fictional character like Boon Yi. This drama based on real history with fictional elements. They won't stray too far from history.

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Well for history's sake they have to include Lady Min, but I don't mind downplaying her. SFD has its own story to tell. That's why it's a fictional drama. We don't need that many historical documentaries about Lee Bang-won't life.

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That is a bold statement that even a historiographer in Joseon would not dare write on any historical records. I hope it's just YOUR own interpretation.

Political marriage was just not for Bang-won and Lady Min. That was the norm back then especially for the upper class.

The one true love that came out from such marriage that was recorded in history was between King Gongmin and Queen Noguk. His love for her was so deep that he went crazy and neglected his duty as a king after she died.

Lee Seong-gye's (King Taejo) love and devotion for his 2nd wife Lady Kang (Queen Shindeok) was also recorded in history. He showed his love for her by choosing her son as the crown prince instead of the more capable older princes (like Bang-won).

Bang-won was a very capable king. Maybe because he loved Joseon more than his women imo.

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I'm waiting for The First Strife of Princes, that's where Lady Min play really big part. I hope the writer not gonna change the history.

She persuaded Bangwon to start a coup and fight his own father for gods sake, I hope the writer didn't forget that important thing!

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I don't think LM will play big part in SFD universe. She's just a supporting character. I guess Boon Yi and her organization will help BW.

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Sorry but that's gonna be hilarious.... Boon Yi and her organization instead of Lady Min and her army? That just doesn't make sense to me.

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Lol I totally get it, I desperately want Lady Min OUT of the picture. I was so annoyed when she interrupted Bang-won and Boon-yi's moment when BW was telling her how much he's pleading for her to stay by his side. BW-BY relationship is based on true love. It doesn't matter Boon-yi's not a wife or concubine, because formal marriage agreements are so powerless when you have true love.

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Kaylie, you said it better than me. so agree with you.
Lady Min Da Kyung is TOTALLY ANNOYING in episode 39-40. In early episodes I don't really care about her marriage with Bang Won but lately she keeps nagging and BW looks tired of her too. She's the worst female in SFD, she only cares about herself and her pride noble clan, even Cho Young and Gap Boon are better than her.
I'm glad they minimize her screen time in both ep41-42.

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Yeon Hee only cares for Sambong and herself too, IMO. And it doesn't mean they are the worst. Actually MDK looks flat as a character because the writers keep putting her on the background. The writers are very smart in making a character alive once they decide to put one at the center stage.

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It's obvious that you don't like Lady Min but to say that she is the worst female in SFD is pretty ridiculous. I wonder if we are watching the same show.

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I'm sorry if you're Min Da Kyung fans, but this is my own opinion based on this drama. Lady Min is the worst because she has no direct contribution, she's selfish and she never cares about human being at all, look at what she's done to one of the kids from Boon Yi's organization. When she said to her husband "we need Boon Yi organization" and "I don't care about you having 100 concubines" to me that's official she's not human. She may look graceful and elegant outside, but she's devilish inside. At least Yeon Hee and Cho Young have their own precious dream for better world because of their depressing childhood experience. Lady Min? no, she just think about her own pride. Please don't mix history and drama. To me Lady Min in SFD is completely pain in the ass. I'm sad they killed Cho Young --who is awesome-- too early while Lady Min is still around doing nothing.

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It can't be helped when some drama viewers watched their dramas with shipping goggles on.

Anyhow, looks like Ha Ryun gets some time to bust out his brilliant brain and use it. This and the next episode. My wish was semi-granted, I think.

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@Gehrel
I can't disagree with you there.

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Hahaha. You make me laugh @kaylie..to be honest,I am dying for this couple...Let them be writer-nim.

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I still find her stiff. But I do find the conversations are touching.

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Thank you for the recaps...
I also like to thank you for someone in drama beans family who give sugestion to visit tumbler bodashiri...it's realy help me alot ( with picture and explanation), i am a person who can't speak english and korean but love watching korean drama I try hard to understand all the confersation in drama by read subtittel but some time i lost in translation.
Anyway thank you for your time for do all the recaps it's guiding me when watch the show.

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Lee Shinjeok has always been loyal to Sambong not matter what. He was Milbon in Tree after all.

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That is correct. I don't think anyone who has seen Tree believed his little fake betrayal.

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I'm actually disappointed in BY's pragmatism, would love to see her take the leap of faith by being with BW after settling her villagers in Banchon. Guess it's the diehard romantic in me... The story should move on to BW and LM since his bittersweet loveline with BY won't be getting anywhere. And sweet, loyal MH finally made his choice, good to see him standing up against YH.

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"The story should move on to BW and LM"

that could be the worst idea ever if writer-nim do that. One of SFD base story is BW-BY love story. I don't think they will move to BW-LM.

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SFD at its core, is not a love drama. Historically, LM is important in BW's fight to win the throne, don't think she can be written out of the drama without the Korean viewers setting out their pitchforks.

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Agree with ZY

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That is the most awkward camera shot in the end. The Ming leader looked like he was trying not to laugh.

Is it too late for Bang Ji to join BW? He's fighting for BY's dream but who's he really kidding, it's because of YH too. I feel like BJ is lost character. I'm glad Moo Hyul decided to stick by BW's side.

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HAHAHAHA it was hilarious. The editor is to blame. He cut the clip after the Ming Leader sneers, so it looked like he was giving Bang Won a toothy smile. They should've held that scene of Bang Won sporting a sly grin and the Ming Leader intensely staring at him with gritted teeth. Then Cut! No more smileys hahahaha

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I was laughing at that scene.. it was very funny because it looked like he was laughing..

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Am I the only one who's sad about the way Cho-young died? Choked to her death by a man while all her four limbs were tied up? Somehow it makes me hate Lee Shin-jeok. Goodbye Cho-young, thanks for being a good supporting character for the past 42 episodes!

Lee Seong-gye and Jung Do-jeon just can't go any lower, can they? Scheming to use a dirty trick to strip Bang-won's powers and put an end to his 'greed' after they found Joseon, and now that they need someone as hostage for Ming they think of him?! Damn it Lee Seong-gye, don't let me lose all respect for you! I still see the little boy who yearns his father's love and recognition in Bang-won and it hurts to see him used by his own father like that. Argh.

On a side note, as a Chinese, that dialogue with Zhu Di was hilarious because their pronunciations were atrocious. Ha Ryun mispronounced Bang-won as '李胖圆', which translates to 'Lee Fat-and-round' and I couldn't stop laughing.

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Nope, you're not alone. In fact, I was sort of enraged lol. It really made me feel annoyed at Lee Shin Jeok too. For one of the first proud and somewhat powerful female character introduced (which is then followed by plenty others), I think I had plenty respect for her. Although she didn't raise those Hwasadan girls to live the dream life, they did live well enough. Thought they played Cho Young so dirty there, strangling her and letting her struggle and suffocate for that long even after already being tortured was just really sad. Then they downplayed it to being a suicide, sigh. I wonder what YH felt when she found out about it - that's if JDJ even told her. She may have just been just a supporting character, but she sure did well, kudos to her and the directors of this drama who make me care about 99% of its population.

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I also like Cho Young, and on a more shallow note, I also think she's so gorgeous.

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You can't imagine how enraged I was. I felt really bad for Cho Young. She's a strong woman. She was a war orphan, climbed her way up, and survived so many political battles only to die like this.

She's really pretty during the torture scene though, I think I actually fell for her.

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To think that after all that she's given no respect or honour during/after her death is just ouch. She's pulled through so much and to see her there absolutely helpless - literally helpless - was just painful.
Oh, and the way she kept looking at Yeon Hee when the police came to say out her crimes and stuff, augh, that hurts. But I'm very happy that even to the very end, she was still that strong, driven and at the same time compassionate woman. She genuinely understood YH though it must have been hard to swallow. And before she died, she still said "I'm a woman and a spy"; and she's proud of it. It comforts me a little that although she may have died in vain, at least she wasn't bitter nor regretful.

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You're spot on about the helplessness. That last scene of her dead on the chair, bound and tearful, was absolutely heart-breaking.

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I teared up a little while reading your comment. RIP Cho Young

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The way Cho Young was betrayed by Yeon hee and murdered in the prison breaks my heart. At this point Sam bong is beginning to look more and more like Lee In Gyeom and Hong In Bang. He no longer minds being dishonorable or using underhanded methods to obtain his objective.

And using trickery and deceit to get rid of Bang won by sending him as an envoy to the Ming empire! What I disliked about it most was how he pretended to be concerned about Bang won's welfare and pretended that the order came from the king. JDJ's probably patting himself on the back hoping the Ming ends up killing Bang won so he doesn't have to do the job himself! I am disappointed that LSG doesn't try harder to protect his sons. I wonder if the King too, is hoping that Bang won gets killed so he doesn't have to deal with such an ambitious and disobedient son.

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But maybe isn't that the point? I mean, looking back at it, perhaps Poeun's death was a turning point for JDJ as well. It's the point where he basically says, "Screw everything and screw ideals and honour. If I don't go out 100% and more to see Joseon achieved, then everything up to this point--including Poeun's death--has been for nothing."

And he does get at it, in that pretty quotable speech about taking responsibility. It seems to me that that marks the moment JDJ stops playing by the book and will just go all-out to make sure the Joseon he's written about comes into fulfilment.

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Stop making sense. Everyone is suppose to hate on Sambong (jk).

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JDJ just did what he thought best for his goal, and so did everybody in this "game of throne".

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I wish that Lee Seong Gye would try harder to understand Bang Won and not send him to the Ming. What happened to protecting your family?? But someone got to do it i suppose, it just left a bitter taste in my mouth that a father would condemn his son to death just like that.

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Lee Seong-gye picked his best son who would be able to handle diplomatic missions to Ming. Joseon is a small country. Ming is bigger and superior in power. Friendly relations between the 2 countries is very important for Joseon's survival. It has only been 2 yrs since it's establishment. It's still unstable in a lot of ways.

Sambong just completed the Administrative code of Joseon (1384). The new palace that he personally designed is almost completed. The capital will be moved to a new location etc etc. They are still working on building the new government and establishing new laws, stabilizing the country's military forces, education and civil exams etc.

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In short, I believe Seong-gye sent Bang-won to Ming to accomplish a very important mission and not because he wants him dead. Return with Glory was his last wish for him.

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I agree with the atrocious pronunciations too! Haha! Fat and round! Didn't catch that one! I'll go back and listen again.

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Yes and that dialogue got even more atrocious in ep42 LOL. It always strike me as super funny that in korean sagueks, the chinese characters' korean are amazingly much more fluent than their mother tongue XD

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I wonder why they don't just use actors fluent in both Mandarin and Korean. I mean there ARE some in Korea and it's not as if the roles span half a drama.

Otani Ryohei as a Japanese actor in Korea strikes me as one of those cross-border actors.

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And this is the guy playing EMPEROR YONGLE! Haaaaa!!!!

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Unintentional comedy for the viewers lol. I never took their conversation seriously. Counting on Moo-hyul for some real entertainment.

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I can't imagine the real Bang-won talking to the young emperor of Ming in this manner. "You want to die?" Seriously?

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@Kiara

I loved that exchange though. Good to see Bang Won's steel - it was do or die, basically.

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Hee hee hee! I speak mandarin too! And Zhu Di... Any English speaker would have heard that as Judy.

What's up with the rising tone after every syllable? Haha!

I guess I could forgive Ha Ryun for he was not a Han but the actor playing Zhu Di... lol!

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Same here. I needed subtitles for their Mandarin speech, lol. Such a relief when "Judy" switched to Korean in Ep 42.

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Judy---> baahaaa

This conversation made my day.

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LOLOL

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When CY said that she takes pride in being a woman and a spy...woah...I think it´s the first time I ever heard someone say that in a kdrama. It pretty much deleted all my memory of her past actions, which were mostly frustratingly stupid and slow for a leader of a bad-ass spy organization. She really died a pitiful death:/

I was also surprised by LSJ, that he was willing to go this far. All the former good guys, Sambong included, surprise me with their new lows. They also look a little pathetic at being ruthless and goal-driven. I prefer them reading books (only).

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I like the fact that in this drama, no character is bad for the sake of being bad. Everyone has grey and gray morality, no straight black and white morality. Just refreshing in drama land.

Ha Ryun the reluctant translator is just the best.

Cho Youn and Yeon Hee's final interaction was just so damn bittersweet beautiful. Even to the very end, Cho Young still cared for Yeon Hee and part of Yeon Hee will always be grateful for Cho Young's help.

Awesome, show. Keep doing you.

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The fact that this show makes a lot people understand most of the characters just speaks about how great it is. But now that we're nearing the end its just slowly becoming a torture because we're going to lose them, one by one.

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Lol Ha Ryun is hilarious. His thinking face is cracks me up. Hummmn if I say this,... will it gets me killed or not...?

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Part the hilarious appeal of his face has to be his partly greyish eyebrow (they're not evenly grey for both brows).

And his major "OMFG, craaap" face when the Yongle emperor revealed himself. Like "I'm dead, we're all dead" was crossing his mind.

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I really like Jo Hee-Bong better in comedic roles.

"I'm dead, we're all dead" Lol I'd totally expect that from Ha Ryun.

I was waiting for him to do a fake face reading kiss up to the young emperor to save their butt.

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Yes! Jo Hee-Bong really nailed comedic roles and he's really having fun playing Ha Ryun in all his cheekiness glory.

Me too. I was expecting him to draw up many or any of his special talents to placate the emperor.

I also liked how he interacted with his Confucian scholar of a bodyguard, the one he bickered a lot in the previous episodes.

Side note, I laughed when Master Hong tried to headbutt Moo Hyul into not attacking the emperor when he grabbed Bang-Won's collar.

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All I gotta say is that Cho Young is one fine woman. The woman is just so crush worthy from the get go I swear. I thought she looked better when she started just chilling with the Moomyung peeps and out of Hwasadan, but then suddenly she looks even better when she's tortured??? I don't get it.
I wonder if I'm emotionally attached to her character or I just really love seeing her on screen. Either way, I sobbed a little during her scene with Yeon Hee cause I knew she was so close to death.

If it's already this painful to watch a former mentor mentee part ways by being on different sides, I can't imagine Lee Bang Won and Sambong's final showdown.

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Yep, I think Yoon Son-ha (acting as Cho-young) is really hot. Can't believe she's already 40.

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There was an old drama 'Did we really love each other" with Bae Yong-jun, Kim Hae-soo and Yoon Son-ha. I loved her there and always wondered what happened to her (Hope my memory is right. I think she went to Japan and stayed there?). Glad she is back.

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Her makeup was on point when she was at Hwasadan but she's goddess level when she got tortured. I also don't understand.

I really want Sam Bong dead right now but I'll probably cry when it happens. I did so for Po Eun.

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mte Choyoung was ridiculous pretty even with all of that blood on her face and I'm like, how??????? D:

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Hwasadan ChoYeong was using makeup as sunscreen on her face and her hair sat on her head like a huge bush while tortured ChoYeong had lesser makeup though her eyeliner game was still on point and that bush was no longer there, showing off the very beautiful shape of the actresses' face.

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You're right, I knew she was beautiful from the beginning but her Hwasadan hair and makeup didn't show us just how absolutely gorgeous she really is.
I think it was when she was revealed as Moomyung (I think she went out or smth in simpler clothes, that scene where she was eavesdropping JDJ & Poeun then got busted) that I started to really realise how beautiful she is. I searched her up and was awed that she's already 40+. The bush in her hair shrinked as she was sotting around with her Moomyung gang and then when she was getting tortured we finally got to see her face, just that, bloody and all. I did notice that eyeliner too though! Haha. Torture me all you want, but you can't ruin my eye make up - she and Gil Tae Mi must have shared some similar principles. But really tho, Cho-young is going down in the books as the most beautiful human during torture that's for sure.

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I first saw her in Ugly Alert and thought she's so pretty. Years later, she even looked prettier! It's funny though because she was married to the actor playing Lee Seong Gye in Ugly Alert.

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Damn i keep thinking about how this all ends. (Maybe because of all the facial hair in ep 42 hahaha)

I hope the writer-nims don't do an all out massacre like they did in Tree!! On second thought they can't.. Since we see Bang Won, Bang Ji and Moo Hyul in Tree. JDJ and LSG will die in this (because history). So it leaves Boon Yi and Yeon Hee.

Not sure about Boon Yi, but I have a feeling Yeon Hee will die.

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Yeonhee died too in tree, it waa shown in a flashback. The night jdj died, she died too

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Oh they did? Thanks for the heads up! Lol I have to rewatch Tree again after SFD.

Explains why Bang Ji was so broken-hearted that he lived like a recluse in the mountains. :( poor Bang Ji.

Probably they wont kill Shin Se Kyung's character this time though, so Boon Yi is sort of safe. ?

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Technically Yeon Hee will die in this drama together with Sambong. The flashback in Tree is the spoiler.

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Dang mah FEELSSSS!! Is it normal that everytime someone cries in this drama I cry too no matter who they are? Bang Won, Bang Ji, Choi Young and even annoying but pitiful Yoon Hee I feel for you *cries* Lee Shin Jeok I know what you are from the beginning but never thought you would take that whole sacrifice down to the wacky torture!

Aaaand Moohyul Dragon title is coming!! Yay!!

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How I love BW's and BY's relationship! Whenever BW is at crossroads or in a really hard place, he always goes to meet her with tears in his eyes and she always manages to calm him down and give him hope. She's his moral guide, his compass, helping him find his way in the dark. He's not afraid to be vulnerable before her as he trusts her so much! With less than 8 episodes to go I wonder what will become of the future of their relationship.

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Love love what you said about Bang Won - Boon Yi relationship, they are indeed true soulmate.
I'm still hoping writer-nim won't kill Boon Yi in the end...because I don't know what will happen with Bang Won. I desperately wants Boon Yi to marry Bang Won. surely Boon Yi will be the best wife, she will support and direct him to be great person in future.

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Well, because there's a lot of unnecessary Min Dakyung hate in this episode recap, I just got to say BOTH BOONYI AND MIN DAKYUNG ARE AWESOME. Stop pitting these two women against each other just because one is Bangwon's love interest and the other is his wife and future queen. If they can treat each other with mutual respect, I can't see why drama viewers can't.

Other than that, I also got to call out Sambong and Yeonhee on their hypocrisy. So what you're doing right now isn't greed, right? Riiiiiiiight. . . *slow clap* Sambong is especially annoying with his passive manner of pretending he's doing everything for Bangwon's sake when he really just wants to kill him. Biggest hypocrite ever.

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Cho-young! Never, ever reveal to your enemies what you know about them when they have the upper hand!

I wish she didn't and kept the knowledge with her to use against JDJ's plans.

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I know right. When she revealed it my heart sank because I knew there's no way she's gonna come out alive.

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damn i really wish this drama was 60 episodes instead of 50. it's so good.

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I know right , it still too short for this drama to ending in ep 50

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I know a lot of posters keep recommending TWDR for those that want to know about Sejong. I was not a fan of TWDR so I'd like to recommend another great drama about King Sejong. The drama Sejong the Great aka Great King Sejong is one of the best historical Kdramas I've ever seen along with Dong Yi and Jumong.

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I will never recommend TWDR as a drama reference to the real King Sejong. Yes he created Hangul but the whole story in TWDR is fictional. The Great King Sejong is closer to the historical Sejong.

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I watched Tree as a fictional sageuk and enjoyed it a lot. I loved the actors in it. They were pretty amazing.

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I'm ready for the First Strife of the Princes! JDJ and YH need to died soon. I can't stand the two of them I end up fast forwarding through their scenes.
Btw I know that TWDR is recommended a lot because it's the sequel to SFD.

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I'm so confused by the people wanting to change history and remove Lady Min.

She was key to King Taejong gaining the throne, had a TON of his children, and is King Sejong's mother

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I know some people take the shipping to another level. And I know the ship will sink because no K-writers dare to change the major fact of the major historical figure like Lady Min.

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Sometimes I want to believe that this is the real BW & JDJ. It was JDJ who betrayed his own ideals. His plan works over all bcs it was a dirty tricks and I hate how LSG agreed to those. Oh man! Your the one who give hope to those ppl,they believe in you,and they support you but look what you did?You used them for your personal interest.
BW's wrongdoings was your fault.

BW & BY's convo is always painful,it's tearing me inside.Gosh..angel is living inside this beast.I hate to say this again,but can they give them a happy ending?I know it's impossible. BY is the epitome of a good leader,willing to give up everything for the sake of her ppl.So sad that her life is always at the edge of the sword.

Thanks heads..

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I think I'm the only one who want Boon Yi to die so that we can move on to more important storyline. Sick of "I love you but we can't be together" thingy.

For me, Bangwon can function well even without Boon Yi and her organization. His love for his ambitions is greater than his love for Boon Yi.

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Boon Yi to die? maybe yes in the end, but not now yet.
Okay, you must have ambition to success but without other people you're nothing. Writer-nim want to humanize Bang Won. That is why Bang Won STILL needs people like Boon Yi and her organization.

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Like @lawren wrote, BW needs to be humanized other wise he is no longer a dragon but a snake. BY makes it possible to love his character even though she/we/he knows he is becoming a beast.

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Although the history is twisted I believe they are making do with what they have in regards to Bang-won’s trip to Ming.

Professor Choi's translation of the Annal of King Taejo stated that the Ming emperor requested one of King Taejo's sons (the older princes) to bring with him the one(s) responsible for the disturbances in his border.
(The Jurchen deal with Sambong in the drama. So basically he should've taken Sambong with him but I guess this connects with Tree and his claim that he went to Ming in Sambong's place).

Historically Taejo picked Bang-won to go to Ming (which makes sense because Bang-won was the only one among his sons to get a formal education and knows how to deal with politics). Bang-won agreed and Taejo shed tears for sending his son in this long and dangerous journey. The officials that accompanied him to Ming are not in the drama. They are making do with Ha Ryun, Moo-hyul etc.

Poeun was the best diplomat of his time. He was respected in both Japan and Ming's court. In Gyeom sent him to Japan hoping they'd kill him but Poeun"returned with glory".

In the drama Sambong is probably doing what In Gyeom did to Poeun. Sending Bang-won to Ming hoping they'd kill him. (Kim Myung Min's devilish smile says it all lol).

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More connection with Tree now that there is only a few more eps left.

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Am I the only one, but does anyone see a similarity between Yeonhee and Yeon-hyang and Bang Ji and Gil Sun Mi? Gil Sum Mj joined nameless for Yeon-hang just like Bang Ji joined JDJ for Yeonhee (and Boon Yi) both Yeonhee and Yeon-hang went through so much to become the strong cold hearted woman they are today while Bang Ji and Gil Sun Mi still see them as their past selves and love them. Also is Gil Sun Mj Bang Ji and Boon Yi's dad? Is that implied?

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I cried at the scene when Bang Won laughed bitterly after Sambong told BW that he was sent to Ming because his father and him think he`s the one who can persuade Ming king. And then that bow to his father and that walking alone after that,, poor BW, he looked so lonely,, :(
thankfully he met BY and the BACKHUG,,,

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yes..that bow..so sad

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That is actually true though. He was the most capable one in all of the princes for this diplomatic mission.

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Most capable, yet not fit to be crown prince. I feel bad for real Bang-won in history for this as well.

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I'd blame his own father for that. If the translation of Taejo's historical records is correct then Sambong, Jo Joon and other ministers did in fact advice Lee Seong-gye (King Taejo) to choose the crown prince according to order of inheritance and contributions to the new country but he went ahead and picked his beloved wife's son anyway. A fatal mistake that would later cause bloodshed between his sons.

From Taejo point of view I think that was his way of showing his appreciation to his wife for her support. She played a big role in gathering political support for her husband before and during the establishment of the new country.

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Thanks for sharing about Joseon's history with us! Taejo is indeed partly responsible for his sons' death.

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why writers....oh why you havent give MH his dragon title? ooooohhh....this is what makes SFD great. The agony of waiting for HY dragon title, of watching lovers couldnt be together,of watching a frined turn into a foe.... and i have the same question too.. is wanting something sooo badly considered as greed? since when ambitious equals to greed? Lee Seong Gee should be proud of having a smart,ambitious son like BW.. he will be a better king if his father n teacher didnt deny him, if they acknowledge his contributions...but they didnt and when BW turned into ruthless king, whose fault is that? LSG should attent parenting seminar more often!
BW needs BY to keep him sane.. BW get a support from LM to reach the top of theworld..there is no either or..no need to argue bout that. and the hug....sigh..thank you writers-nim. i can make a peace with that

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"is wanting something so badly considered as greed? since when ambitious equals to greed?" The best line in this episode.

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I think ambition and greed go hand in hand. None of them would've accomplished their goals without power. Sambong , Lee Seong-gye, Bang-won etc all fit the label.

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*MH dragon title
*friend
*are there any other typos i made?

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Seems like the parents on Mondays are competing for "Worst parent of the Year" (How about ever?)

The one here is gunning for Worst Mom Award while the Dad over at Cheese is preparing his speech for Worst Dad Award. I don't watch Moorim school but apparently there's news over there that a Dad wiped out a his adoptive kid's entire biological family. What's going on with MBC? I don't even know what show they're broadcasting but I think it's one of those melos and you know the parents there aren't exactly stellar. Where else do the melo come from?

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At first, i thought this drama has too many episodes.. But now, can i request to take it a lil bit longer? hmmm.. maybe 10 or 20 more episodes??

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hear hear !

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They can stop the drama now and Yoo Ah In goes to the army and we pretend LBW is having funs with Ming Emperor for 2 years and then this drama can continue to 100 eps :D

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Hear hear!

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But it'll be the longest 2 years ever...

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Oh how I wish we do time skip in real life too,, :(

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I'm not talking about Lady Min in the history because I'm not Korean and don't know Korea history. I'm talking about Lady Min in this drama. She's a very smart woman and can be a great help to LBW but she doesn't get his love because she isn't a woman to love. Men respect but won't love a woman like her. You don't feel the warmth from her . Everything she does is from her head, not from her heart. Even when she praised her husband, she said that with a level tone and stood far from him.

Nah! To be loved, you need to get close to him, even when getting close not to hug him but to bite him :)

I would call Lady Min 'Iron Lady' with respect.

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Her character is realistic in accordance with this era. She understands politics, that if her husband doesn't have power he would be easily eliminated. She has the brain and resources to support Bang-won all the way to the throne.

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Lmao it doesn't matter if men won't love a woman "like her." It'd be their loss and she doesn't need a man's love to be awesome. This is such a stupid and sexist double standard, though. If a man was like Min Dakyung, everyone would be fawning over him and praising him for being so intelligent. Women would go after him left and right. But because Min Dakyung is a woman, she is unattractive for being intelligent, rational, and ambitious because apparently she lost her "feminity" and "appeal as a woman men can love." What a load of bullshit.

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Words!

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Lol laughing with you. Well said Tofu.

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I think Lady Min isn't loved by BW not because she is an intelligent woman but because she placed her own family over him and had no real affection for him from the very beginning. She doesn't love him, and he doesn't love her, either. That's even. BY is also an intelligent woman, but BW loves her because he knows she genuinely cares for him no matter what. Frankly, I can't detect BY's true feeling from SSK's face, though. She is so expressionless like a statue.

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Marriage wasn't about love. It was about power, security, producing heirs to the throne etc.
Bang-won having a girlfriend on the side is a total fan service and that's why it's fictional.

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well said tufo! :)

I love Lady Min she's awesome!

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"But is it so bad to want more Bang-ji?" -exactly. :)

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No....it's not a bad thing at all..coz me too want to see more of our lee banji....he got less screen time but it gave deep impact ....wish he got more screen time and improvement on his character..tho I doubt that will happen ...and it's just a wishful thinking something happen with him and cbuk sagwang,, I just love the of them

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Hahaha typo error on Chuk sagwang .......and (the two of them )hihi

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I was actually shipping Chuk Sa Gwang and Moo Hyul. Lol.

Sorry, enough with the shipping for me. I just love how ballsy Bang Won was in the last moments of this episode.

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I'm curious how Bangji ends up fighting against Moohyul in the end. They are on the opposite side now. And judging from Episode 42 Moohyul truly looks like he is having a major crush on Bang Won. LOL

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Moohyul will probably face/off against Bang Ji - and that will give him the dragon title. At all cost, he will protect Bang Won, while Bang Ji is committed to protecting Sambong (because of Yeon Hee and Boon Yi). I could be wrong, but I just don't see what else could earn him the dragon title at this point.

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Technically Cheok Sa-Gwang is the current unofficial best swordswoman of Joseon. She almost chopped Bang Ji in half in earlier eps. If it wasn't for Moo-hyul Bang Ji would've been dead.
Now both Bang Ji and Moo-hyul figured out her weaknesses so I think if they were to fight her again she will be defeated unless she has not shown all her skills yet.

I think Cheok Sa-Gwang would be the one for Moo-hyul to beat for the title because according to Moo-hyul in Tree, Bang Ji beat him and let him live in shame by refusing to take his life.
No matter what there will be more inconsistencies between their characters here and Tree.

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So...Le banji did beat Moo Hyul..thx 4 the info , as for the Dragon title for Moohyul, Maybe...just maybe its nothing to do with defeating someone, maybe the Dragon title for Moohyul is referring to the undying loyalty he showed us with Lee Bang Won (loyalty is hard to get this day). He do sometime questioned whether Lee bang won action is right or wrong, but still he choose to stay by his side regardless ..

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I thought about Moohyul facing off against Cheok Sa-Gwang too, but disregarded it because I wasn’t sure whose side she’s on. I remember Yeon Hee asking someone to go look for her, so that made me wonder if she’ll end up fighting for Moo Myung, which would indirectly put her on the same team as Moohyul.

I guess Moohyul killing Cheok Sa-Gwang would be a fitting way for him to earn his dragon title -- but it would probably be a bittersweet achievement since there seems to be some type of connection going on between those two.

Poor Moohyul has gone so long without his dragon title, it better be fricking amazing when he gets it. I think he's a great character -- a standout, really.

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@ziea yu

That is what I have been thinking all along. That Moo-hyul earning his dragon title has nothing to do with his fighting skills and strength but his loyalty to his master. No one was as loyal as Moo-hyul.

@Tech30

I'm hoping that Moo-hyul and Cheok will remain friends. I would hate to see him fight her for a stupid title when he is already the best swordsman in Joseon to his master Bang-won. He doesn't need to prove himself by killing another swordsman. He is realizing that he is a protector and not a killer for fame.

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But why Moo Hyul will fight Cheok Sa Gwang? The one who wants to kill Wang Cho is JDJ, not LBW

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@Kiara

Yup, he is a protector indeed, if I'm not mistaken even Lee Bangji said that he is strong when in time to protect somebody or someone. Ohhh, how I hope the three swordman (Lee Bang ji, Moo hyul and Cheok Sa Gwang) did not have to kill each other, if it does come to that it will be sad TT TT. Because the three of them have good nature(kind heart), due to circumstances that they have to kill someone, not because they willing to or the pleasure in it.

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@Izzy

Moo-hyul fighting Cheok is just an assumption based on how the previous best swordsmen earned their title.

Gil Tae Mi earned his title after killing Hong Ryoon
Bang Ji earned his after killing Gil Tae Mi
The best swordsman so far by reputation is Cheok Sa-Gwang.