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Mr. Queen: Episodes 11-12 Open Thread

A festival and banquet occupy the court this week, but there’s more than mere pomp and circumstance going on. Each player has their own agenda, and while some prove victorious, others are blindsided by their opponents. In other words, just another day at the royal court.

 
EPISODES 11-12 WEECAP

We open our episodes this week catching up with our characters: Hwa-jin has shared the infamous ledger with the queen dowager, Cheoljong is tickled over his new dictionary, and our queen is complaining that she feels like she’s made of legos — some pieces of her are So-yong, and others are Bong-hwan.

Our queen attempts to distract herself from her reality with the concubines, and she has a little too much fun choosing them, bathing with them, and playing with them. No one finds this strange — but then again, everything this new So-yong does is a bit strange.

The real action, though, is the goings on at Dano (or Surit-nal), a traditional holiday that the court is preparing to celebrate. Though a lot of what we see at the festival is a bit non sequitur (or in the words of the grand queen dowager, “staged and boring”), it also plays hosts to several important moments.

The first of those is between Hwa-jin and So-yong. Hwa-jin has been nursing her enmity, and it’s grown as her jealousy has grown. When her handmaid’s body is found (and points to the Kim family side of things), that enmity only increases. Though she is still pretending to be kind and doe-eyed around the king, she’s actually scheming behind his back. And about to murder So-yong.

The ladies’ hunt event, a part of the festival, starts off hilarious and has this almost gaudy feel to it, but it ends at a very high pitch. That’s something Mr. Queen is quite good at: taking these moments it has been playing for comedy, and then suddenly turning them serious. And that’s exactly what happens during the hunt, when So-yong comes face to face with Hwa-jin and her metal arrowhead. No one is around to see this take place. Will Hwa-jin shoot?

The second big event of the festival is the fan-fight between Cheoljong and Byung-in, and this high-stakes fight is intercut with the scenes from the ladies’ hunt in a way that builds a tense and exciting cliffhanger. Mr. Queen is also very good at cliffhangers.

The fight between Cheoljong and Byung-in is important primarily because it’s a bit of a dare — not many know that Cheoljong is actually not a lump, but actually an amazing fighter. But after this face-off with Byung-in — well, the cat is out of the bag.

It’s a fantastically shot fight scene, and in between all the great choreography and the competitive emotions on display, it ends with two important things happening. First, that thanks to the fan that covers Cheoljong’s face just so, Byung-in has a eureka moment and realizes that it was Cheoljong that night (at the beginning of the drama) who tried to kill his beloved So-yong. Second, not only are Cheoljong’s skills out there on display, but he wins the fight with Byung-in, who is left more defeated than ever. (As a proud member of Team Byung-in, my heart sank here.)

Fights and face-offs out of the way (and no, Hwa-jin didn’t shoot So-yong with the metal arrow but with the painted cotton-tipped one) — there’s even more festival to be had. And more drama.

As ever, So-yong finds herself in the kitchen saving the day once again as she creates the many courses for the festival banquet (and the dishes are as full of puns and modernity as ever). Though the kitchen scenes are mostly for the fun and comedy, there is also some mischief afoot. Actually a lot. Actually, there are so many treasonous and evil-doing people around the court, I’m surprised our body count is as low is it is thus far.

The final event of the banquet holds the biggest reveal, and the biggest bang (pun intended). Though Cheoljong seemed to be holding his own all day, and gained some respect with (So-yong’s) banquet feast, it all falls apart at the end.

The malicious KIM JWA-GEUN (KIM TAE-WOO) publicly exposes the king’s Royal Guard members as criminals and outlaws, but more than the actuality of what was going on in this scene, it was Kim Jung-hyun’s performance that really sold it all. In the space of this one scene, he goes from carefully-hidden shock, to vengeful screaming, to sheer surrender. All while remaining kingly and almost austere. Tears fall from his face, but that’s the only window we have to the torment that’s going on inside.

Furthermore, when Cheoljong ascends to the altar to light incense and pray for the good of the nation, we get an equally arresting scene. It’s careful and deliberate. Cheoljong slowly bows and rises; the incense he lit burns down. And as the ash hits the sand that it’s been propped in, we see that it’s not sand after all: it’s gunpowder. A huge explosion sends Cheoljong tearing through the air, and the whole court is in chaos. So-yong runs to him on impulse, but is held back by Byung-in. And that’s our cliffhanger. Like I said, they do them quite well!

For all the slowness of the court politics plot, we actually do get some important reveals — and out front attacks — this week. I’m hoping that Cheoljong and his reign survive this attack, and who knows how much more fuel this will add to the fire. Good thing Bong-hwan is around to set everyone to rights.

PS: If you’re also watching True Beauty with me, it bears noting that this is certainly the week for our heroes to sustain bodily harm — and not only that, but to be flung through the air as a consequence of it. It’s not easy being a hero.

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This episode makes me root for Cheoljong's cause.

It seems like in this drama, Cheoljong is responsible for the serious and heavy bits, while So Bong is designated for the fun and wacky parts.

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I live for the fun and wacky parts of the drama!

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Lol like when the Queen bust that backflip.. AHAHA.. doing that see saw thing ( neoltwiggi?)

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This drama gives me whiplash, with the slapstick comedy and puns on one hand, and the court machinations and ever-growing tragedy of our puppet king on the other. The acting is so good, on all fronts, that I love both parts of the drama. I almost couldn't watch the king as he lost his tiny little army of friends, I felt so bad for him.

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It's like So Bong and Cheoljong are in dramas of different genres, but shared the same timeline

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He actually cried when he realized there was no way out except for the one the Grand Queen Dowager offered to him. And with tears again, recited the prayer for the nation. It was so sad!

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As we reach the halfway point of this drama i have come to love the clear balance that the writer has given for both lead characters. They are both given a story arc and cause which are different in tone but very much dire in both cases. I'm especially pleased because i was a bit worried that Cheoljong was going to be outshined by Shin hye sun aka So Bong because she takes such a large part of this story, but the writer has balanced them out with the overarching political plot, comedy and romance, quite well and you can enjoy the genre which stands out to you the most.

Speaking of this week's episode, so much was compressed in two episodes but the last half of 12 was an unforgettable one. The performance of KJH sucked me in so much that the literal explosion gave me a real fright. I love how unpredictable this drama is and even watching the preview gives me little insight into the chaos that may ensue in episodes to come, but i'm excited and that's all i need!!

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Completely agree! The last part of the episode, from the fan battle on, is so well done it needs rewatching. The choreography of that fan battle...just amazing.

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it was i was in complete awe!

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My heart fluttered during the letter-writing scenes - the look on the King’s face when he was pondering over the Queen’s letters did something to my heart. So far I have been rather neutral towards the King, I was neither his team nor Byung-In’s but lately I have been warming up towards him and that scene sealed the deal for me.

In every episode, there is always some thing, a little scene or a dialogue that made me LoL. In Ep12, the honour goes to Mac Donaldu 🤣🤣

This is my fav drama at the moment but that cliffhanger though, oof my heart 💔 Saturday, please come soon!

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Omg yes that cute Joseon texting 💬🥰😍😘😍🥰... best part of episode 11

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To bad Bong-hwan didn't realize he was texting the wrong number ><
I wonder if Cheoljong recognized the same handwriting on the banquet menu explanation...

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I really hope so! That immediately struck me - the messages are not in formal Chinese script but in Korean so he must make the link straightaway: the queen writes like that.

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Ooh, so not only the handwriting but also the content itself, of course!

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Actually that is a nod to how well they work together . Remember how CJ is always interpreting what the Queen says like “SNS” lolol. So I love how she set up everything and he just made up an interpretation based off her description 😂🤣😂🤣 love these two!

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I was happy to see how they were able to work so well together. It put their relationship on a more solid footing.

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I think Cheoljong recognized the handwriting right away. No one in upper class Joseon have such an ugly handwriting 😆

Morever So Bong has been writing only in hangul, while everyone else in the same social class writes in chinese characters

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OMG! Her handwriting is the worst 🤣🤣🤣 and I LoL when she commented how pretty the alleged concubine’s handwriting was during their “texting”.

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I also LOL-ed at her one of a kind handwriting but fits quite well considering she is using for the first time a brush and well So Bong's character and quite big at that while Cheoljong has this nice noble flowery handwritting(and uses a small brush) jajja
No wonder she doesn't suspect a thing and believes it's from one of the concubines...The writing is beautiful,the content is cringey and sentimental,doubt she would think it comes from a man...Don't even get me on the content of her letters jajaj

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The first letter she actually wrote said, "are you sleeping?" Hahaha! Such a player! And sent it to three consorts!

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I loved how So Bong came up with the names of the dishes just for fun and games, but the King always managed to read a really deep meaning into them to impress the court. This seems to be how these two communicate - So Bong says something without thinking too hard, but her words still manage to send the King in a spiral of misunderstanding.

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Really wanna see both their reactions when they find out about the letters,please show it show...I feel a bit sad for Cheoljong as the letters weren't for him,curious how would he reacts if he finds out,will he be jealous?

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CJ’s last letter to her that he wrote but didn’t send to her was poignant. He really does seem to care for her.

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the bomb explosion is a little far fetched for me. do they still have to do that when he already "conceded'' to jang geun to decide what to do with his men? can someone explain why is the king crying?

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He felt helpless and defeated. He realized no matter what he does nothing changes and he can't win. As for the bomb, I am not sure who planted it.

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OH.. i thought because they beheaded his men or something like that, ..

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They are supposed to be beheaded.

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Implating fear as he could be always killed...If they dared to do it in such an important place and sacred occasion with all the high up watching they sure don't fear anything...Also to show others what can happen as well if they cross them...My bet is on the Kim's,they do have that Minister of War.

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As for the bomb more than sure it was gun powder.

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My assumption was it is the Queen's cousin because he realized the King tried to kill the Queen. While the rest of us have moved on, he is just now finding out. His jealously has overtaken sense. He was also the only one seemingly unsurprised by the explosion.

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I would be sad if its him.. I have really high hopes for him and I have a sneaky suspicious he is related to Byeong In.. I have a feeling BI is a member of the YI Clan that was raised by the Kim's as a sorta safety net

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Sorry I meant the Byeong In is related to the King somehow

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That is an interesting theory, hmmm

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Yes, I am going based off Go Princess Go. In the original C drama I read about it that the 2nd male lead was actually the Kings brother. All we know is BI is adopted and I am guessing those ambitious Kim's dont adopt strays. I think BI is their backup plan if all else fails. Its probably why the " dad" is so sensitive when it comes to him.

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@candiland that tracks, cool

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Ooh. I like that theory. I really do want BI, CJ, and So-Bong to work together. They are all at least shown to have consistent motivations. Even if I don’t always agree with their methods.
I would watch CJ and SB rule with the help of their band of merry court workers - Court Lady Choi, HY, the Royal Chef and Physician...

is not my cup of tea. So she can just take a hike and hoot her arrows somewhere else!

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Missed typing HwaJin in my comment.

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Whew Mr. Queen is the King of cliffhangers. I was not expecting the attempt to kill the king and the explosion had my whole jaw drop!! The entire two episodes were outstanding but the ending of episode 12 got me and how the King seem to be reaching for Mr. Queen and how she ran towards him without hesitation.

Now the highlights of the episode for me is the Queen winning the hunting game and that sly smile her and the Eunich shared. I was cracking up. 😂🤣😂🤣.
Omg and when Court Lady Choi saw that sexy blacksmith with the muscles 💪😂🤣😂🤣😂🤣.. and her will to not get distracted. All I could think was I feel you Court Lad y Choi because he was ripped 😂🤣😂🤣. I know the big funny of the episode was Mcdonaldu and it was hilarious but when is our Queen going to get credit? The King has no idea that she helped him create threat amazing and yummy meal 😋 although I think Bin suspects. Ugggh speaking of Bin, I cannot wait for her to get hers because I can’t stand that double faced witch.

Now another scene that got me was the fan fight. Sorry guys I like Byeong In too but I am fully Team King and he looked so hot 🔥 during that fight and he won! I felt bad for BI but was still grinning from ear to ear. But with the good comes the bad and how they did my King was so wrong, I feel so bad for him. No allies, no one and then an attempted murder but it’s a real whodunit because everyone except the Queen is a suspect in my book! I am leaning towards Queen Dowager through.
I hope this is a changing point for Mr. Queen because they have been on the sidelines far too long, it’s time to pick a side. All that being said , I can’t wait forSaturday. This show has me like the Grand Queen Dowager and her fortune jelly’s, I need “one more” 😂🤣😂🤣

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I was hoping the king gives credit to the queen for helping him with the meals. any subtle scenes where the king could actually know its the queen's doing?pls pls i hope someone can shed light. about the fan fight, I am secretly hoping Byeong In will win even just for once although i know the king will win (of course its the director's choice) I still cannot forget the scene when the king cold bloodedly put the sword to the Queen's neck not only once but twice, the other one being a knife. so I still do not ship the king with the queen even with ep 12 cliffhanger. but I find the bomb explosion too much. do they have intentions to kill the king? why still do that when the king already accepted "defeat" and give Jang geun the power to decide how to handle the king's men.

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Doubt the gun powder they put there would truly kill him but it was to make a statement and add fear to the King,when he was at it's lowest(like Kim did when he was small with the well) and the other high ups...If they dared to do it in the open in such a sacred ocassion they sure aren't afraid of anything and anyone who wants to make a move against them better thing twice.For sure the Kim's will fake being clean but everybody knows they did it.

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With all the "no women in the Royal Kitchen" rules wise, it's best not to say it was the Queen (hence her reassuming the alter ego and dressing as a male kitchen worker).

It may still come out later as proof that the Queen is not "with" her family, since she tried to help the King pull off a successful banquet. That would serve as an easy mark against her. I'm amazed the Grand Dowager wouldn't have a clue, considering all the times she's eaten the Queen's food.

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Court Lady Choi got me in stitches all the time! From politely stealing another lady's coat to making great excuse to get the Han name, and even ditching the sickbed to be next to her Queen; she is the (spy) MVP for this episode...

Hoping Cheoljong recognized the queen's handwriting so he knows where the credit should go. And it's amazing that he got what Bong-hwan wrote like he's the client-facing AE while Bong-hwan's the creative ><

And yay for the whodunit!

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I was seriously worried when Court Lady Choi was caught following that Han guy. I dearly hoped that the writer did not kill her then because she was my favourite court lady in dramaland. Luckily that scened turned into a fan-sign event

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So self-sacrificing, letting him wrote on her precious object >< Totally died when the shopkeeper/master informant called her out as his most valued customer!
Wondering whether it'll be used to implicate Han Shim-ong in the future...

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You do realize that he had to look through the kaleidoscope at least once to verify that he's not the man in the pictures? 😆

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Oh did you see how she reacted when the Queen mentioned it might harm the royal chef? Hahaha! Those two are so cute.

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Yea, so cute and glad that it's mutual between them!
The Royal Physician seems to admire her too, wondering whether there will be another contender for her affection, LOL.

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Was laughing so much on Kim Jwa-geun face when he got the "dud" on his dessert, but totally forgotten that in the last 20 mins. That ending shook me. Gah, not enough that Cheoljong has to be publicly emasculated, they had him (almost) assassinated too. Indeed, @missvictrix, being the hero is hard!

But who in the world is behind the gunpowder? Both Kim and Jo just want him to be under control, not dead. Plus, doing it openly like that will sort of make a martyr out of the King, no? If I am the detective in charge, my main suspect would be Byung-in, LOL. Am considering So-yong's dad but that also seems a bit farfetched...

And Hwa-jin, that kiss on Cheoljong's hand feels very Judas-like. Did she encourage him to get closer to his queen, so it will hurt more when she's dethroned? She sure jumped to the dark side in the speed of light...

Can't wait for the next episode, surely it's time for both the King and Queen to be in the same team!

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I don't suspect the biggies because noone in their right mind would kill a King without any other heir in the royal family. And it seems that there is none. Since Cheoljong also receeded they had no reason to do that. I know BI is reckless but this is far fetched for him too.

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Ooh, good point about no royal heir. Plus it's such a public attempt. But then again, what if the intent is to maim and not kill, hence the king will literally be a puppet...

Wondering whether it's a betrayal from Cheoljong inside men, like maybe one of his gun team since, well, gunpowder... (Thank you @missvictrix, I didn't even know what that was!) But even then the gunpowder guy might be just a lackey and not the brain..?

Am even considering So-yong's dad as the culprit with the intent of saving his daughter from dangerous political intrigue. Maybe with her husband dead, she can quit the palace..? Sorry for the far-fetched theories ><

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yup that was a fear of mine too.. That as soon as the Kims get their heir they would kill CJ.. I want CJ and So Young to have a child BUT I dont want it to be a child controlled by the Kims.

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I’m wondering if it’s the King himself. The explosion occurs right as he pleads to the gods with a desperate “please...”. So I wondered if he took this risk as a means to gain control. It was sad to watch him have to publicly try desperately to save the men who had come willingly to train and serve him only to fail and end up indirectly killing them to protect his secret. The explosion does give the King an advantage as it exposes that there are nefarious actors at work.

My other suspect is our resident drug addict fixer for KJE. Maybe he is worried that the King saw his face when fighting with him in SoYoung’s house and decided to take matters into his hands.

I don’t think it’s BI but he is very protective of SY and could have let his anger get the better of him. I’m not convinced it’s him because he acts from a place of emotion and seems to be more of a type to directly challenge than sneakily hurt.

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Aw, it's probable that it's the Cheoljong himself, but it seems somewhat suicidal, unlike what Cheoljong has been so far. It's true that he was desperate, but will be awfully sad if that's the case...

Ooh, the fixer guy with a scar! He was around when Special Director Hong was done inspecting the altar, if he is going rogue then he probably had the chance to sneak after.

Byung-in deserves a mention in the suspect list because he definitely has the most sincere motive to wanting Cheoljong dead >< But yea, I don't seriously think it's him either.

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I have zero suspicions whatsoever on Byeong In being the culprit for the explosion. But I have a very compelling theory that the King is the one who planted the bomb explosion to himself, maybe around 99.99% but I could be wrong. hopefully am wrong lol.

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My bet is still on Kim Jwa-geun in cohorts with his Minister of War or other Kim.Doubt they wanted to actually kill him but did injure him...I see it more as a statement to everyone if they cross them and to know their place...Doing it in the open and on a sacred date shows they fear no one not even the Gods...Also,that gun powder more likely was prepared way before and was there with or without the King bowing in defeat.

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100% agreement with thinking it's the King that planned the explosion for the same reason "please". When he picked out the incense sticks, it felt like he was trying to find specific ones, which at that point could be dismissed due to his tears not allowing him to see if he was picking out the right number of sticks.

However, for as short as that prayer was...those were the fastest burning incense sticks I have ever seen! Can't be a coincidence even if the King wasn't behind the explosion.

If he was...my thought was it was a Hail Mary desperation plan in case the event was an epic fail to shake things up and see who tries to nail whom with whatever faked evidence--essentially to make them all attack each other instead of him for at least the short term to give him time to try to get an upper hand again. It wouldn't be the first time a royal faked an attack to do something similar.

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Two brilliant episodes for humour! The "texting" between the king and the queen was hilarious, largely because of the way the two reacted to reading each message - so modern... Then, the hilarious moments with the food at the banquet - I almost died laughing when they tried to make deep meaning out of the syllables of McDonalds. And the lolly sticks with fortunes - I bet the queen had a bit too much fun choosing who was going to get which message! Each one so apt, and so much fun to see their faces as they read them :) :) :)

But, I agree, the standout for me was Kim Jung-hyun's acting when his troop of hidden soldiers was exposed. You could see the cogs whirring - an intelligent king trying to figure out the best reaction, what would save the situation, trying everything and then having to admit defeat. When he started crying, I FELT the humiliation of the king - amazing moment! - which continued as he desperately tried to keep it together whilst reading the prayer but teetered on the brink of losing it all. KJH - top class, sir!

Really interested as to where they'll go from here!

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I loled so hard at "McDonaldu". That is my main takeaway from ep12. 😂😂😂 plus it made me crave for burger and fries. 🤣

With that out of the way, there were a lot of political maneuvering going on in this episode. I just found out that this show has 20 episodes so there are a lot yet to uncover.

I love the budding attraction between our Royal couple. I love their late night exchange of letters with BH unaware its CH he is writing to. 😂 SY/BH own agenda to make herself indispensable to the Elder Dowager Queen.

I was rooting so much for CH to succeed at the Suritnal. So when KGJ viciously humiliated the King, I actually wanted to wipe that smirk off his and his cronies faces. Then seeing CH look so defeated broke my heart. It goes without daying that the explosion was very unexpected. And I welcome the fallout of this event.

Which makes me wonder if its an assassination attempt to discredit the Kims? If so, is it part of CH's plan? If not, who else could be playing the game?

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Hmm I am not sure it’s CJ plan because that’s very dangerous but I wouldn’t rule it out. It would be interesting if it was a 3rd part we didn’t consider like the weird blind lady who works for GQD..
I wish mr Queen could do something like steal the Kim family Gold or call on her mother’s clan. I mean I know Mr.Queen has been helping as much as possible on the sidelines (way more than Bin) but I am ready for MR. Queen to stop playing it safe and pick a side.

Cause a division within the Kim clan which would be beneficial for the King.

The GQD and the ministers on JG side but Byeong In, Kim Hwan, and The Queens dad on the Queen side. A split in the Kim clan would help level the playing field some

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Bin is not only not helping but is actively harming. Her jealousy and wish to bring the Queen down is bigger than any love or feeling she has for the King or his cause. Because she couldn’t trust the King to make sure the Queen is discredited too she ran off and gave it to the Dowager Queen. Silly self-pitying woman!

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But she did help excuse the Queen's lateness at the event (after she smelled the cooking oil) by announcing she accidentally shot the Queen at the hunt.

She may only be hanging onto the barest of threads of whatever friendship there was, and it might also have been guilt over handing the ledger to the Dowager Queen.

I'm not saying she's a saint. But she did at least offer than one crumb.

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Ep 13 gave a hint that SoBong might enter the Throne Games Joseon Ver...

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Oh that would be a hoot if they start playing the GOT opening OST.. well if they are willing to pay the copyright fees.. =)

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I suspect it is the plan of the Cho clan, they think they had all the cards, so assasinating the King plus the ledger gives them the power to discredit the Kims. The Queen Dowager said that HwaJin only wants the Queen's downfall which is why she does not see the big picture. The Kims did not need to kill CJ since a puppet king is to their advantage. So my money is on the queen dowager.

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Agreed! All of those machinations and conversations about Hwa Jin and the bigger picture, make me think it has to be her clan. The only reason I am not confident that it was Hwa Jin herself is that she almost gave a surprised and approving (?) look when Mr. Queen came back to the banquet and she realised that he smelt of oil...

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I also dont think Hwa Jin was in it. She is also a disposable tool being used by her clan. The Cho clan is just as vicious as the Kim clan actually - having already tried to use a court maid to be blamed for KSY suicide and also by deceiving Hwa Jin re the body of O-wol. So it is also possible they planted the bomb, why else would that court minister leave the ritual too?

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It was also so scheming of the queen dowager to plant doubt about the queen in the grand queen dowager's mind. It was innocent on both parts, but the queen dowager managed to make it look like the queen is betraying the Kim clan for the king.

Hwajin also accusing the queen of killing her court maid was also so out of left field. Politics makes everyone paranoid.

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I don’t think the writers will write a script that is too predictable. Of course given the circumstances, audience will outrightly point at the Kim Clan as the culprit who planted the bomb. But I trust the writers to give us a more clever plot twist. So yeah I don’t think the Kim clan or Byeong In did it.

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Shin Hye Sun looked so cute with her hazelnuts, like a a little squirrel :D

I have an issue with the rythm of the episodes. Sometimes, it's very slow with cooking and mukbang scenes or the exchange of mails mixed with faster serious politics scenes...

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That ending just broke my heart. Seeing Cheoljong so defeated and crushed, crushed me too. He is a really nice person and I am glad the writer started to show more of his personality. It is now SoBong and Cheoljong against the world and I am here for it. Soyong's memories and Bonghwan's modern knowledge is a fun blend that will no doubt help their cause. We got a minimal amount of our otp on screen together this week but their relationship got even stronger. The way Cheoljong reached for SoBong and how SoBong started to run towards him I-.. I wonder if he'll ever know that there is basically 2 people in one body. If I am thinking about the script logically then he should and probably will, right?

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Omg yes at the end, I just want him to have the queen by his side *mentally kicks Byung-in away*
Have been waiting for Cheoljong to shed his fool mask, it's so tragic that he only had a little moment of glory before being crushed T_T
100% agree on So-Bong + Cheoljong against the world!

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What a week! Ah!! Some random thoughts:

1. The whole banquet scene was hilarious! But I also loved the way Cheol-jong and So-Bong worked so well together (but apart xD) without having discussed anything beforehand! I just love them!

Having said that, we got too little time with the 2 of them together, this week; not ok!! :(
But also I loved that little discussion they had in ep 12, it was short but meaningful, somehow?? They were honest with each other, and though it wasn't, it felt like the first time that happened? Can't really explain it ahah!

2. Can't believe Han guys keep ruining Bong-hwan's life even in Joseon! ahaha!

3. I think Seol In-ah is playing Jo Hwa-jin too well! She's making that entitled behavior mixed with fake innocence of her very believable! xD
Also, I'm still hoping we'll get to know more about what SY allegedly did to make HJ hate her so much..there must be something?!? Right now she just looks blinded by jealousy, I can't empathize with her.

4. Byung-in is annoying, the fact that he has valid reasons to act like he does makes him even more annoying! xD
Seriously though, it's time he realizes who are the people who can actually hurt his beloved So-yong. Still rooting for him to see that!

5.THAT EXPLOSION?!?!? WTH?!?!? So unexpected!
My initial thought was that Kim clan did it, to scare the King some more. Then I saw some comments guessing it might be a plan by CJ himself?? It's so dangerous, but I'm starting to think that's a valid option too.
And what was that last whispered "jaebal" about? What was the King pleading for??? With that look of despair on his face??? My heart broke there :(((((
And So-Bong running toward CJ while he was reaching for her?!?!? </3

6. I love this show so much!!! uhh!!! <3
Even though they sold it as a rom-com and now am I crying..wth??? xD
Can't wait for what's next!!!

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The ending almost made me forgot the banquet's hilarity, but only need to picture the Royal Physician peeling potatoes with spoon to get me cackling again ><

Yes on the short but meaningful discussion, love how it affects So-bong and how Hong-yeon totally called out the I-don't-care-about-the-King lies!

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Yes and yes!
Sobong-ie, time to acknowledge your feelings!! ^^

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Still wondered why they wouldn't peel it with a knife!

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You are more likely to cut yourself if you peel potatoes with a knife. A spoon is safer and is actually more sufficient.

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I never knew that a spoon can be used to peel anything. Now I want to try it out

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I knew this because of Lee Su-geun... (https://youtu.be/oc6okwrqtIw?t=423)
They took away his needle and gave him a spoon, LOL.

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On 3, isn't it that the Dowager Queen made her believe that SY is responsible for the horrible death of her maid and childhood friend, Oh Wol?

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Yes, that's one thing, and the main reason HJ tried to harm SB during the hunt.
But HJ also said that the So-yong she knows would be able to do such an horrible thing, like having her maid killed..so I'm still waiting for the show to reveal the reason behind such enmity towards SY, though I'm still not sure there is one! xD
Unless it's all about what happened when they were kids, the well incident.

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This also still baffles me.. why would she say that the queen is the type who would do such a thing? Lets hope we get to see that.

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I don't care if her reason turns out to be a misunderstanding, or something stupid, I just need the writer to give us answers already! I need something xD

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I think HJ said that because So Yong is a Kim. For her, all Kims are capable of doing anything (including killing) for the sake of their clan's power.

In HJ's eyes, So Yong did marry CJ for the Queen's position and to cement Kim's hold on the throne

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I saw the next episode (Episode 13) which was the other queen hearing about the planned fictional assasination target for Kim So-yong after King Cheoljong (which in real life, it didn't happened) and coulda mean there's no tomorrow which I looking forward for the seeking comedic revengeful return of Bong-hwan with either on or off screen (voiceovers) cause me to my unexpected big fun.

Now, the entire episode 12 was one of my greatest highlights of Mr. Queen so far. The bloody fictional assasination of King Cheoljong during episode 12 was my best idea from the writer of Mr. Queen. The flying attempted death scenes were well-choreographed and well-balanced one-man stunt even the slow-motion scenes and dramatic aftermath explosion background modern instrumental music was all fittingly good job and I had never disappointed with either cinematographer, editor and PD to made them as one of the Studio Dragon's successful TV series during the continuing successful era up to now. Even the ratings did deserved a well-performing highest rating peak (13.2%). I look forward for the climaxes during episodes beyond episode 12 (ep 13-20) even the anticipated conclusions.

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Loved the fan fight scene! I miss Lee Jun Ki's epic fan in Arang and the Magistrate.

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And Jang Hyuk (as Yi Bang Won) and his fan in My Country.

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Byung In looked soooo noble in his stance...

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he is rather tall too! very princely or shall i say kingly? if its not because he is distracted and too emotionally upset (upon discovering who tried the queen before) and of course if the director did not let the king win, Byeong In deserved to win the fan fight lol.

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Several thoughts

1. The banquet scene was hilarious. The Mcdonaldu was brilliant.

2. I bet the Queen's creepy cousin rigged the thing to explode. This was his revenge for the King trying to kill the Queen. He is still stuck in the past, while everyone has moved on.

3. Poor CJ, he just wants to do the right thing and be loved.

4. The fan fight choreography was really well done.

5. The Queen's face as she is rushing toward the King is perfect. Determination and concern warring on her face as she runs toward him.

6. I have to agree with the other beanies here, the writer does a great job of having two separate and distinct storylines that are still connected. I just hope they don't lose the story in the back half of the drama's run.

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About No. 2, According to some chat groups in Taiwan and South Korea, they are thinking the bomb is planted by Cheoljung himself, as a motivation of him disposing the Andong Kim's (as shown in next week teaser). You know he has a group of snipers under him, and probably only them can handle gunpowder.

Just also want to mention this, McDonald's in our world is planning to introduce a plant-based burger this year, I guess Bong-hwan is really ahead of his time, and ours, too.

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Oh hmmm, that is interesting about the King. That makes sense too.

Bong Hwan was ahead of his time.😆😆

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even without knowledge on Taiwan and SK chat groups I already had intuitions that the king planted the bomb himself. You can tell by the expressions on his face prior to explosion, he does look like Jesus Christ about to be nailed on the cross, like self sacrificing. I watch it without sub title and this is my opinion then even after watching with subtitle my opinion remains the same. the bomb was planted by the king.

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AUGH Product Placement strikes again! 😭

(I've not watched the credits since I've been catching up on eps. Has there been a McD advertisement? Your find would be dead on then, I bet.)

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The banquet scene also highlighted Cheoljong being such a sweet talker showing us the parralel of So Bong and him on the menu,being able to make such elaborate stories presenting the dishes in a flash sure is amazing.

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I don't believe that BI rigged the bomb because I'm pretty sure that his character is meant to be noble, someone who wouldn't do such a thing (however jealous and stuck in the past he might be).

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agree to this, I never have a second thought he would do such a thing.

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I don't this Byung In is the culprit behind the explosion. He has strong sense of justice, so he will not do something like an underhanded assassination attempt. Just like his fan fight with the king, once he realized that Cheoljong was the assassin, Byung In tried to kill Cheoljong through a fair fight, and in public

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Joseon era Director Han’s name is “Han Shi-Mong”. Say it fast enough and you hear........“Hwang ShiMok”. Is the show paying homage to another awesome show about corruption and political maneuvering that Shin Hye Sun was a part of? 🤔🧐😁🤣

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That’s my thought too! HSM from FoS.

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Ah!!!! The name sounded familiar to me too!!! Maybe that's why!! xD

But tbh I'm not sure I like them linking our dear Hwang Shi-mok to that fraud of a guy ahaha!

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i believe the name is a word play on 한심 (han shim) which means pathetic, which is very befitting of the Hans' consistent behavior throughout generations haha. just like how there was a word play on lee saeng mang, (이 생 망) where:
이 (lee/yi) - this
생 (saeng) - life
망 (mang) - bad luck/doom

my knowledge on korean is very low but this is what i understood by the names. its a very witty pun! if anyone is more fluent, you are more them welcome to correct me if im wrong!

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I guess what killing it is not only recreating a McDonald's burger in the Chosun era, but a McDonald's plant-based burger. According to this piece of news, McDonald's is planning to introduce one within this year. Bong-hwan is surely a chef ahead of his time (not only in Chosun, I mean).

Mr. Queen is great because of its balance on comedy and tragedy, as well, by having a man's soul gets into a queen's body, we are starting to think about what's in a good leader. Starting with his secret army being threaten to be executed, we are seeing a glimpse of Cheoljong's plan. Some discussion pointing to a possibility that he plant the bomb himself as a motivation of purging the fraction of his grandmother (Andong Kim Clan, I mean), so the next episode with be a huge turning point if this is true. I am looking forward to it.

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We have the same thoughts. I am thinking he planted the bomb himself. his expressions prior to the explosion tells something terrible is about to happen. the Kim clan have no intention to kill him so why plant the bomb.

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The humor was great in ep 11. I loved the messaging how essentially it went to the wrong "number" She had no idea she was worting the king. Also the little girl giving the message to the councillor cracked me up. I like how they are showing miscommunications and the results it can have.
I was absolutely riveted by the final 10 minutes of episode 12. My heart actually broke to see him so defeated. But as others has said his acting was so powerful to see the changes of emotion from disbelief, to anger and to pure defeat. The realization that nothing he does will work broke him. the explosion at the end was shocking and unexpected.
I used to feel sympathy for byung-in but now i just can't stand him. it feels rto me everything he does is to spite the king. He is so blinded by his feelings and i think manipulated by his father that i wouldn't care if something bad happened to him. I was not down with him sabotaging the food.

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I don’t want anything bad to happen to BI because he’ll be useful to CJ & SB if he just come around, hear them out and just trust So Yong. But he’s annoying, right from the start!

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BI character is a noble one; the young queen attested to his good person character at the well. I think he was acting based what he knew - that the king wanted to cause the Queen harm and he felt that the Queen’s character was pure and wanted to protect her; as he has been doing since he was young. I doubt he would harm the king this way. He is a noble man and would do it as a direct confrontation.

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I don't think BI set the explosion. You are right that he is to noble in that sense he would have a direct confrontation. I wouldnt be surprised if it was his father or some other minister.

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That Mcdonald part was the single most clever PPL in a long time....that is if its a PPL.

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If the bit came first, they would be crazy not to turn it into a PPL. If McD’s wanted to do a PPL for a veggie burger first, the response was wonderfully done!

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And call it Mr Queen.

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MacQueen

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There was the Samyang Ramyun PPL previously. That one is good too

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Yes, and if my memory is right, it is on Ep. 3.

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Now that the explosion has taken place, I wonder if the ledger is going to be exposed publicly? If not, then perhaps it was a lucky disaster.

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That's right. The Jo Klan and the Queen Dowager were going to reveal the ledger during the banquet. I wonder if the CJ will end up working with them to take down the Andong Kim Clan. :/

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Could someone explain to me exactly how Cheoljong is related to the Grand Queen Dowager and the Queen Dowager? Is he directly related to them? What is his connection with the late king who died?

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According to Wikipedia: "Cheoljong ascended to the throne in 1849 at the age of 19 after King Heonjong died without an heir. As a distant relative of both the recently deceased king as well as a descendant of King Yeongjo, Cheoljong was selected for adoption by the Senior Dowager Queen Sunwon (King Sunjo's widow) at the time and to allow him to ascend to the throne" And the Senior Dowager Queen Sunwon was part of the Andong Kim clan. Her grandson was King Heonjong. (the king before Cheoljong)

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To put it simply, Cheoljong was a descendant of an exiled member of the royal family. When the king before Cheoljong died, he had no heir, so they had to look for any living member of the royal family to fill the king's post.

The Kims need a puppet king, so the illiterate Cheoljong was the best choice.

Grand Queen Dowager Sunwon quickly went to proclaim Cheoljong as her grandson in order to establish the Kim's hold on Cheoljong, otherwise the Queen Dowager would do the same. It's a political move on both of the queen dowagers.

That being said, Cheoljong is not a direct descendant of the previous king, nor he the real grandson of the Grand Queen Dowager.

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However, don't take history very seriously when watching this drama. Afterall it is a comedy with some historical fact twist for the plot. The big picture are basically the same (so as @zzthorn and @transient said), but some of those detail are omitted or just wrong ... I am not blaming the drama, in fact those twists are pretty genius (and I am enjoying it). Maybe the screenwriter are in fact doing it with intention to make the drama more entertaining, I guess.

There are some historical dramas following historical to the smallest detail, like Japanese Taiga Drama, or US movie Gods and Generals; some are just like Mr. Queen, and they all server their purposes, and they all entertaining. I guess my suggestion would be: sit back and relax.

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Obviously! The biggest clue is that playboy men don't mostly drown and turn into queens from another century. Mostly with these dramas I figure I learn a little about the history and am entertained by the rest. There are really cool things to learn about, like the clothing which is probably fairly close to reality, and some of the furnishings in the buildings and such. I do get confused by who the people are because the names are so different from what I've known all my life and it seems those names are not entirely consistent through a person's life, particularly if they become royalty.

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I guess love really is blind, considering how stupid and short sighted Hwa Jin acted in giving up the ledger to the queen-mama. The fight scene was excellent and so was the confrontation with the minister. Total heartbreak for the King and rage at the Kim Clan!

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For those who have seen the original c-version, has and how far the plot line changed in this k-version?

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(am watching True Beauty too) They don't have the Car of Doom (or the Sedan of Semi-Doom) in Joseon hence gotta use gunpowder bomb to try and off the King (how dare they!)

Looking forward to Ep 13. I want the King to win this!

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There's still plenty of time for Horse of Doom, Cart of Doom, or the rare Palanquin of Doom to make an appearance.

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1. Cheoljung putting ByeongIn in his place, 2. SoYong's realization on her attempts to be cool with HwaJin and 3. The royal banquet save by the king-queen duo + the dud on minister Kim's jelly stick - are my epic moments this weeks episode.
While they might have tamed him this week, they might have also provoked his political side, seek power to protect his own.
If that explosive was planted by the King, was he gonna blow himself whether or not he was humiliated cause I see a relation with Forbidden Dream

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Little late to the game, but that means I got to binge-watch 4 eps this weekend, yay! My reactions...
>>Joseon era version of 21st century texting/ sexting is SO cute
>>For once, the cult-lady got *something* right (about the King hiding a true-self from the court officials).. she often has conjectures, but they are WAY off xD
>>Everytime I see the 3 concubines, I call them 'Innocent, Sexy & Cutie' :P
>>I love the shot of the King's eyes from up the translucent brim of his hat.... they have been doing it since ep1, and it's a brilliant angle for the actor KJH.
>>I swooned so hard when BI crumpled the fan and snarled 'i will kill you!'
>>I lose it, every time Courtlady Choi is a thirsty woman xD
>>Little kitchen-girl is SO cute, with her fluffy cheeks :3 This time, even Mr. Queen couldn't resist and squished them! ^^
>>Everytime noble-poet tries to hit up Hong Yeon, and instead has a mini gay-encounter... man, the writers of this show are brilliant! :D
>>Also, I diedddd at the McDonald's reference, that was such a clever PPL, I NEVER dreamt of... but then again, these are the writers that made BlackPink X Joseon crossover come true! :)

>>oh, and CJ 100% planted the gunpowder thingy! ^^

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I'm curious to see if the pacing of the eps will change or hold steady since the event. I'm not feeling as much lull as prior, but maybe it's just me.

I am having a really hard time not thinking of the Queen as a blend of So-Yong & Bong-Hwan at this point, and that's primarily because of the loss of Bong-Hwan's inner dialogue voice. I don't know if this is intended to signal the "one soul, two bodies in two time periods" theory, or to reinforce that So-Yong continues to color wash all of Bong-Hwan's thinking.

I'm kind of happy about the Royal Chef and Court Lady Choi, but I wish they hadn't made him quite so derogatorily mean in earlier eps.

I am actually bummed that the evil Mr. Han involved with the water tainting incident was just tossed out like an hurried loop close. Yes, it would have eaten up a lot of screen time for Bong-Hwan to find the right Han clan without being able to reference back in the future (probably because I'm thinking of a certain library loving time traveling scholar who did sometime similar to influence the past and thus present), but this just felt a bit too easy and a let down as a result.

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Episode 12 is the best so far!

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