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Mr. Queen: Episodes 19-20 Open Thread (Final)

The finale is here! As we follow our king and queen through their final battle at maximum intensity, we also find a resolution to our story. Though the details are not explained, the ending stitches together in a way that’s both exciting and satisfying. It’s rare that finale episodes are the best, but these were surely my favorite of the show’s run.

 
EPISODES 19-20 WEECAP

A fierce and terrifying Byung-in has So-yong by the neck. But rather than jump off the cliff a la Cheoljong, and rather than die at Byung-in’s hands, he has mercy on her just in time. Though he realizes she’s not his So-yong, the memories that are in her are enough for him, and he winds up back on the queen’s side, and fighting off the men who once answered to him.

I’ve been interested in Byung-in’s part in this story from the beginning, so I enjoyed how long of a stretch is given to wrapping up his story. In the end, he comes full circle, having begun with this secret/devoted love of her, to have that morph into anger and jealousy, only to have it turn back to loving devotion in the end. I do love that.

Byung-in protects So-yong till the end, gives her the evidence she needs to prove treason, and dies a beautifully heroic and soldierly death in order to protect her.

So-yong’s terror is palpable at this point in the story — running from the guards who will stop at nothing to kill her, heartbroken and horrified over Byung-in’s sacrifice, and wondering if she’ll ever make it out alive.

This tension is quickly broken, though, when So-yong is reunited with her crew. Lady Choi and Hong Yeon are okay! Cheoljong is there! Ah, the feels over this wonderful scene where everyone is reunited. Even the royal chef turns up (I couldn’t love this side romance more).

In sum, all the best and best-hearted characters have joined forces with the rebels, and are ready to march on the palace and stop the false enthronement from happening.

But first, romance! This was the first point in the story (for me) where the romance between Cheoljong and So-yong felt real and epic, and it only heightened the poignancy of the story’s climax. They’re so damn cute together; I could watch them as this ragged rebel crew forever.

In fact, the dynamics are so great in our story’s final episodes that I almost wish we had longer to enjoy them. Couldn’t this rebels-in-the-woods thing have taken up a little more time? I could have done with less hijinks in the court, and a little more rebel action.

We definitely get the action in our finale, though! Cheoljong and So-yong sneak back into the palace and then proceed to march through the courtyard to stop the enthronement. But, the evil henchman of Kim Jwa-geun (Scarface) is hiding from a secret perch and shoots both So-yong and Cheoljong. I would love to talk about the weaponry here, and how firearms totally changed the face of combat during this time, but we have more important things to worry about on this scene!

It looks like So-yong was shot in the back, and Cheoljong in the heart, and they’ve both fallen to the ground in agony. They’re reaching for each other while also blacking out and wow does this scene pack a serious punch! It’s better than anything I expected. I also found myself wondering if they would just die tragically in each other’s arms.

But also important here is that while So-yong is writhing in pain and clutching her stomach, there are also flashes of her as Jang Bong-hwan in his hospital bed in present-day Seoul. She’s screaming that it’s the worst time to go back and she needs to make sure Cheoljong is okay… but suddenly we’re back in Seoul, and Bong-hwan jumps up out of his coma.

After all the tragedy and bloodshed of the courtyard scene (which is still suspended mid-scene), the drama quickly pivots, as it so frequently does, and we have a burst of comedy. Bong-hwan takes off and escapes the hospital by flinging himself through an open window, finds the nearest bookstore, and frantically leafs through a history book to find out if Cheoljong and So-yong did indeed die that day.

Then, we cut back to Joseon, and get the rest of their story. It’s an odd and slightly uneven choice to jump back and forth at this point, but that’s not to say it doesn’t also work.

So-yong is now the real So-yong, and we learn that the two were saved by bulletproof vests. So-yong herself goes through an agonizing recovery, but luckily both she and their baby are fine. Ah, the court is just filled with such love and happiness and wholesomeness at this point.

Cheoljong takes care of all the corrupt officials once and for all, the grand queen dowager and queen dowager are all but banished, and So-yong makes some important changes in the court. Indeed, we see Bong-hwan reading about it in his book — Cheoljong and So-yong have gone down in history as wonderful rulers who cared deeply for the people, and planted the seed of democracy in their country.

And one step further, Bong-hwan is no longer a wanted criminal, but a lauded hero. Both he and Cheoljong saw a major change in their fate, and all for the better. With the souls returned to the correct bodies and everything set to rights, we’re left with a happy ending — with just enough cheekiness to leave us satisfied.

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Loved this drama through and through, I was always worried that it would lose it’s steam and humour halfway down the track but 20 episodes in and I still loved it as much as I did at the start, besides the writing and directing, it really was the stellar cast of this drama (especially Shin Hye-sun who I love and can do no wrong) who made this drama worthwhile,

A pairing like SHS and KJH doesn’t come around often so I’m always going to be grateful that we got to see them in this drama, really looking forward to their next dramas and also congratulations to the Mr. Queen team for raking in 17% for their last episode, so glad it did well!

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Shin Hye-sun & Kim Jung-hyun sure makes a hell of a pairing! Seeing Choi Jin-hyuk at the end, I have no problem at all associating him with So-bong and differentiating her from So-yong, Shin Hye-sun is so amazing...
The cast is indeed fantastic, glad they received their deserved appreciation. Also, happy that show introduced me to Cha Chung-hwa, looking forward for her next drama too!

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i hope we get to see them together again. they are such stellar actors and so fucking funny on top of that. genuine respect.

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Congratulations to Kim jung hyun for making it through till the end in one piece heehee.

I'm so pleased that this drama was amazing from start to finish and covered all the important plot points. I was wary of how they were going to wrap everything up in the last 2 episodes but that was a very satisfactory and fitting ending for both the king and Bong Hwan.

As sad as i am that he returned to his world and we didn't get much exploration on his sexual identity it was enough to know how much he cared about Cheoljong and wished for his happiness and that in itself was satisfying for me.

I absolutely loved this drama and for one with 20 episodes it managed to stay true to the nature of themes it came with and jam packed it with action and comedy. I'm truly going to miss this sexy and badass couple and wish the best for their future projects.

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If jisoo never gets the girl, kim junghyun "never" sees the ending alive. 🤣🤣🤣

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😂😂😂

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I thoroughly enjoyed Mr Queen, and have so appreciated your recaps @missvictrix - thank you! I'm glad they went all-in for a happy ending for our royal pair - even though at places things happened a bit too fast or slightly oddly. (I struggled to *really* buy that Byeong-in could do a chameleon change quite so effectively.) Loved, loved, loved SHS and KJH as our OTP - the scene where she was potentially miscarrying was wrenching - and they became such good halves of the same coin at the end. I was grinning like an idiot. Big shout out to SHS who managed to convey SY without BH in the last episode as distinctively different although clearly "flavoured" by him. Great work!

One of my most satisfying takeaways? The Grand Queen Dowager and Queen Dowager both got exiled to the West Palace - may they spend the rest of their lives locked up together annoying the hell out of each other! Nice touch :)

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It's a bittersweet ending for me... Can't help feeling that show is cheating us out of the true happy ending of So-bong + Cheoljong. If I squint real bad, I can see that it's never Bong-hwan alone that Cheoljong fell for, but Bong-hwan waking up with "Cheoljong-ie" first and foremost in his head is heartbreaking for me *sobs* Am glad they at least show Cheoljong wondering if he is missing something...

Am hoping and hoping for a reincarnated 2021 Cheoljong, but show only offers open ending via the special 2 episodes, sad. So-yong visiting Byung-in's grave and saying "you found me again", a reminiscence to when he found them in the well, is so touching. In my perfectly reincarnated world, it will be So-yong + Byung-in and Cheoljong + Bong-hwan; show basically rewrote history, wish they can make this happens too...

The final episode is a bit much on dramatic moments, especially the fight with Kim Jwa-gun. Byung-in, oh dear... Grand Queen Dowager gave him a fitting epitaph when she said "youth and the foolishness of sacrificing everything for one's fleeting feelings"... I begrudge Youngpyeong for his easy happy end, show could've at least had him apologize to the queen because he damn well needs to! But still love the way show poke fun at itself by having Bong-hwan fell from the bed, yet jumping off from the second story minutes after ><
All in all, it's been a laugh-out-loud journey and a totally worth it watch.

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Not gonna lie, when I saw Bong-hwan jump, at first I thought he was trying to go back to Joseon xD

I can't believe he went from stumbling out of bed to that perfect landing, after being in a coma for a few months!! xD

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Aw, jumping back to Joseon, why didn't that cross my mind...
I was like, oh, a true-to-life after coma condition... then he did a Zombie Detective move ><

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Same thoughts here xD
It's Mr Queen, after all, this drama can't stay serious for too long ahah!

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Me too!

The guys chasing after him were even commenting on how he could do that after being in a coma! LOL!

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I agree. I felt that BongHwan's idiosyncracies and strange behavior is what made CJ reconsider that SoYong is more than an Andong Kim. He was determined to hate her at that point despite being initially attracted to her.

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Ahh!! So we've reached the end, at last!!
What a bittersweet finale! 😭
Despite its flaws, I can say that I thoroughly enjoyed this drama week after week, and I will miss it!!

All the love for Shin Hye-sun, Kim Jung-hyun, and the whole cast and crew
for their amazing job! ❤️
Thankful for @missvictrix and all the beanies that made this an even more enjoyable ride!! ❤️

Also, I knew it!! Kim Hwan and his one and only crucial mission, saving the day! XD

(More on those flaws later 👀)

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Indeed for the bittersweet...
Was feeling kinda sobby so was grateful for Kim Hwan and his Lady Jong-cheol theory ><

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Omg that Lady JongCheol! 🤣😂🤣 i just can't with that guy! I still like him, flaws and all!😂😂😂

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You'd think he finally catch up... until Lady Jong Cheol came out of his mouth.

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I cracked even more when Cheoljong asked who made him a diplomat and Hwan saying the King gave him this job jajja

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The pat on shoulder that Special Director Hong gave Cheoljong when Cheoljong realized the mistake he had made by giving Kim Hwan a government post was icing on the cake

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Still can't understand what was in his head when he did it...Di he do it to get him away from the Queen or what...Like Kim Hwan is a good guy without any doubts but is not really delegat material...

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@milky Cheoljong probably didn't think that Kim Hwan would be such a huge doofus, so he award him with his contribution to the throne accordingly.

Kim Hwan surprised me too with his female Jong Cheol deduction even though I am already aware of how clueless he can be.

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@transient Guess in Cheoljong style he had faith till it's ends that unlike his appereance till then he would actually be good at it jaja...and to make him stay away from The Queen as he didn't like him visiting too much

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it's been a while since i enjoyed a drama this much, everything worked so well -- the drama, the comic relief -- these two main actors really made the story believable and brought the characters to surprising life. the ensemble cast supported the leads in the best way, we cared about each and every one of them.

i really loved how Shin Hye Sun projected Choi Jin Hyuk's character and machismo so well, but also conveyed the presence of So Yong. i loved how Kim Jung Hyun was able to show his huge range from comedy to deadly serious drama. he was the perfect pick for this role!

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I really love this drama. SHS and KJH are amazing here. I am so grateful to the casting director who brought us the magic of this pairing. I feel the show would not be as great without them as leads.
A lot of great scenes but my fave was the walk up to the final showdown. The emotional rollercoaster with both of them on the ground and reaching out for each other. The drama and fight scenes so CheolJong can reclaim his throne from the usurpers. So Yong reaching out to her beloved husband and fighting hard to keep their baby and save her husband at the same time. BongHwan evading the police to find out what happened to CheolJongie. BongHwan's monologue about how the world did not change and its up to people to carve out the rotten parts. The sweet moments between CheolJong and SoYong. The happiness they felt and love for each other.
It would have been perfect as well if BongHwan has met someone in the present that reminds him of CheolJong. Its sad that he only has love and well wishes for CheolJong but it would have been great if he has received love for himself in return.
The small scene with CJ feeling like he lost/miss something was very telling. He knew he lost something but its sad he can not identify what it was. He lost a great friend and that breaks my heart.

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I liked this drama, it was pretty enternaining and SHS was so good in her role. She nailed the macho vibe!

But I'm not satisfied with the story. I think they missed So Young's story. We didn't really know her and I couldn't understand her feelings for the King (the spin-off didn't help neither), feelings that were so strong that Bong-Hwan was swayed by them. It's why I liked Byeong-In because he was the only who really cared about So-Yong when everybody seems to accept big changes like nothing. Yeah, he lost himself and did stupid things, it's why he died (karma dude :p), but at the end, he's only one who knew there were 2 people in one body. The King never loved her, for me he was in love with Bong-Hwan. So the fact he left for his area made it a little bitter for the happy ending.

The supporting cast was really nice. I didn't understand what Kim Hwan did in this story but at the end he stole the royal seal and overall he made me laugh so much with his "If LSM is the Queen, it means you're a woman", that I forgive his uselessness during the drama.

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I agree with you 99% 😂
But one thing to add. For me, the king loved both of them, Soyong and Bonghwan. Or at least feel attracted to Soyong (referenced to spin-off). There's something he missed dearly, the rough part of bonghwan that also attracting him, but I choose to believe that all the efforts, choices, and kisses they both have belong to Sobong, the mixture of Soyong and Bonghwan. It's like the subconcious part is inhabitated by Soyong, as she said that Byeongin found her when she was hiding, while the concious part is Bonghwan's. I choose to believe that Sobong's consent to kiss Cheoljong is because Soyong's soul in the body. Otherwise, Sobong would always resist, never allow touching, let alone kissing.

Bonghwan deeply cared about Cheoljong. But I still do believe that he loved the mixture. With that said, he lost and definitely missed that wacky part of the person he loved. Indeed, such bittersweet.

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I absolutely agree. All of the consensual skinship between them happened after Soyoung woke up. Initially the Bonghwan half furiously rejected the kisses that the Soyoung half was desperate for. But slowly, he allowed Soyoung to express that desire and welcomed it. If Soyoung hadn't awakened, Bonghwan would not have welcomed the King in a romantic sense. Aside from romance, even his feelings of sympathy towards the king started after Soyoung was awakened. So I completely agree that Soyoung allowed Bongwan's feelings to develop, and that the King fell in love with Sobong. As well, the only hill to climb for the King to allow himself to love Soyoung was trust that she wasn't one team with her clan.

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I mentioned somewhere in the earlier weeks of this drama that something I am dreading is to get an Oh My Ghostess ending..and that is exactly what we get. I was so numb by this ending that I couldn't even shed a tear.

So Bonghwan never actually gets to say goodbye to his loved ones in the past, that is one major problem in my eyes. He just gets ripped away from his Joseon life and that life was just as much his, if not more as Soyong's. Oh, Soyong, she magically reappears, when 19,5 episodes she was nowhere to be seen or heard, really. If the writers knew they wanted her back, make her co-exist with Bonghwan. When the body went into vegetative state, I thought the royal physician said that there is no soul in it. Where was Soyong then?

I am really disappointed in Soyong too. She is literally an impostor in her own body because I don't believe for a second that Cheljong fell in love with Soyong and she knows that. That laughter, when the King mentions she is way too informal, rubbed me the wrong way. In fact, Cheoljong got just as a sad ending as Bonghwan. He probably knows deep down that he lost the one he loved, but is scared to voice it out. When he touches the Queen's diary, it indicates exactly that.

To me, Sobong was always more Bonghwan than Soyong. Soyong is just sooo different from him and it is not enough that she curses sometimes. It is really like Cheoljong is stuck with Bonghwan's twin sister. It is like Parent Trap, but the parents never find out their children were switched in the first place. And here we are..children. Is the baby Bonghwan's or Soyong's? Just a food for thought.

Byung In got a bigger send off than Bonghwan. Bonghwan never actually got to see Cheoljong win. Everything Bonghwan worked for and did, Soyong reaped the rewards. No one can tell me that Bonghwan's feelings came from Soyong. The moment he wakes up in the hospital, the first thing he does is to jump out of a window to confirm if Cheoljong lived.

I am glad we at least got Bamboo Forest, it is delightful, especially the last story. I can pretend they reborn and meet in the future. I hope they recognize each other like Cheoljong wished for. I read a theory that the King's portrait was made to cheer Bonghwan up in the future. If it is correct, the King really knew, his No Touch Queen was sent back.

I really enjoyed the journey with this drama. Apart from the horrid and tasteless ending, I am glad I watched it and might rewatch but without episode 20. Our main leads' acting knocked it out of the park. That 17% was mainly for them and their chemistry. I don't know when was the last time I adored a male lead character as I do with Cheoljong. Great, great character, amazing otp with Sobong. Loved their trusting relationship.

I bid farewell with a lot of good memories and a little bitterness to this drama. May we get more amazing projects and acting from SHS and KJH.

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Thank you for articulating how I felt about the ending.

It felt like a hard slap in the face. The way they disrespected Bong Hwan and me as a viewer.

The writers made me root for Jang Bong Hwan since episode 1, I watched him grow as a person, I watched him rediscovering his identity and cheered for him when he came to accept his feelings. I came to love him as a chaotic Queen who was hilarious, witty, smart and by the end courageous and empathetic.

I watched his journey for 19.5 episodes and then I watched how the writers pushed him away like he wasn’t the main protagonist until that point. Did they really think I’d care for someone who was hibernating the whole time and then just came back to take credit for Bong Hwan’s hard work for the last 5 minutes?

Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t mind So Yong/Cheoljong endgame if they showed us the progress of their relationship. How much easier it’d be for viewers to root for So Yong/Cheoljong if they made Shin Hye Sun switch roles. So Yong taking control when there were romantic scenes and Bong Hwan and Cheoljong scenes would be purely platonic.

But no, they didn’t show us a single time So Yong was there at all. We were led to believe her soul was gone and it was “cell memory”
that made Bong Hwan remembering her memories. If she was there all along, why Bong Hwan had to jump into a lake to recall her memories? For me it Bong Hwan was the one who made Cheoljong the man he is now (he saved the king and his concubine from execution, he saved the banquet, he supplied Cheoljong with the knowledges about democracy).
 
And they made it clear again and again Cheoljong was intrigued by Bong Hwan’s personality. All the traits he said he loved about the Queen were Bong Hwan’s. Cheoljong ever freaked out when Bong Hwan tried to act like a proper Queen once and told him to act like his usual brash self.
 
So for me it’s mainly the writers’ failure not to be able to make me connect to So Yong. In the end all I cared about was Bong Hwan because he’s the one who made all those things happen abs he’s the one whose journey I watched. 

Bong Hwan went ALL IN for Cheoljong and got nothing in the end. They even had the audacity to name the last episode as “My life without me.” Bong Hwan literally created this life for So Yong, he won Cheoljong’s trust and love for her, but it wasn’t him who would continue this life in the end.

I didn’t expect BL ending, I know conservative Koreans aren’t ready for it. But there were many ways to finish this drama with more satisfying ending. I expected the closure for Bong Hwan and Cheoljong. At least in Oh My Ghost a male lead acknowledged the ghost’s existence and ghost had a chance to say goodbye to him before moving on.

I feel devastated by the ending because I loved this drama with my heart and soul. It wouldn’t hurt this much if I wasn’t invested in this couple. How should I rewatch all their funny/sweet/intense/racy scenes when I know they meant nothing in...

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How should I rewatch all their funny/sweet/intense/racy scenes when I know they meant nothing in the end? This was the best slow burn, enemies to lovers, partner in crimes romance I watched in any k-drama until episode 20 happened.

The only positive aspect is this drama boosted popularity for my beloved Shin Hye Sun and Kim Jung Hyun who were unbeatable in their talents and chemistry. Their casting was a match made in k-dramaland heaven. Their insane acting and sizzling chemistry will be remembered for a long time.

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Very well said and my feelings are exactly the same.This was Bong Hwan's story and journey and the main lead of it and he was that for 19.5 episodes...They just added that BS with saying So Yong's soul wasn't gone when in fact it was,she was laying dead on that lake and never intended to return but played it safe because they didn't know how to end the story to please everyone and give a happy ending without offending people and it's esier because visually Cheoljong still get's the same woman...Also,Cheoljong fell and loved Bong Hwan in The Queen's body,now out of the blue people sayinh he loved So Yong when he saw her once and at most felt attracted and basically erase all the story plot told,that man despised her since the moment he saw her face when she was selected and if not for Bong Hwan he would never change his impression...He even tried to kill her without any hesitation but got side tracked by BH nonsense...Even in the Special ep 2 it shows clearly where Cheoljong heart is,the last ep being obvious...Cheoljong loved everything that BH was and So Yong wasn't...The mare fact he pointed he likes her talking banmal to him or not be a perfect Queen,letting her call him Cheoljong when no one in this drama dared and he liked it says who he loved.

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In the backstory, Cheoljong is indeed attracted to So Yong, but just attraction, not love. Had So Yong is not a Kim and not selected as the Queen, he might end up taking her in as his concubine.

But once he found out that she is a Kim, his hatred for her is much more than his attraction for her. Without Bong Hwan's intervention, Cheoljong will continue to hate So Yong.

So Yong had always had her heart on the king (the king, not Cheoljong because the special episodes indirectly tells us that she wanted to be a queen just for the sake of being a queen and not for the boy that she met in the well) so it's okay for her, but what about Cheoljong who is in love with So Bong, not So Yong?

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And yet i see so many fervent fan lovers who are loud saying or using that special first meeting as the all evidence saying that actually Cheoljong loved So Yong from the get go and basically the whole plot should be discarded..Like he saw her 2 min were he felt attracted to her as she was a pretty lady and somehow looked familiar...Like dude,that attraction went to the side as soon as he saw her in the Hall and finding out she is Kim So Yong(while she was still moony eyes and oblivious to everything),it was pretty clear in his reaction but people pretend not to see that...That special is more bait or to just show us how So Yong fell for him not that he was madly in love with her and all this time he was suppresing it pretending he liked Hwa Jin,something i truly think he did and everyone knew that and would have been attracted to Hwa Jin even without her lie as she was a pretty woman,and he was like 17/18 years old guy.Everyone knew prior to BH Cheoljong resented and despised So Yong,even So Yong knew it as Cheoljong's eyes were honest unlike his sweet talk...The whole Palace knew who he fancied and who he hated and even BH knew right away seeing the lake meeting,that can't be faked unlike words...Seeing the bits of the Palace So Yong i doubt Cheoljong would have given her any chance as he already had his image of her already set nor her personality was that impactful to make him reconsider anything...

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@milky Cheoljong was really in love with Hwa Jin as evidenced by their meeting on the morning after the wedding as well as when he tried to save her from being beheaded. Cheoljong would still be in love with Hwa Jin if he weren't for the whirlwind that is So Bong who accidentally swept him off his feet.

Cheoljong's plan to kill So Yong, the way he looked at her at the lake and his plan to kill her father are consistent with his deep hatred for her as a Kim. Like someone else said earlier at this thread, he won't be able to do any of that if he had any affection for her.

One more thing, the first time we were shown the scene where Cheoljong announce that So Yong is selected as the queen, his eyes clearly showed his dislike for her. KJH did that perfectly while maintaining a straight face. So I won't buy that love at first sight the Specials gave us

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@transient Very well pointed in your last comm and i strongly side with you because that is what the story shown and told us ...That special for me it was always to show how So Yong fell for him,or more that she actually meet him and fell at first sight(just like Bong Hwan predicted spot on)as an adult rather than the boy from the well and to feel sorry for her and justify her happy ending rather than Cheoljong magically falling as well for her in those 2 min meaning erasing all the story out of the blue...He was just attracted by the unknown pretty girl and felt familiar but nothing else as his attraction turned sour pretty quick when he knew she is Kim So Yong(unlike her who was still naive and in her own bubble).Also,by that time Cheoljong was already with Hwa Jin and i have no doubt he liked/loved her,his expressions shout from far away...And u are right that if not for So Bong he would still love/be with Hwa Jin,even if by that time he found out about the well lie,he liked her anyways like he said it himself...I mean,the day So Bong fainted with Bong Hwan soul leaving her body Cheoljong was going to spend the night with Hwa Jin,him being also the one proposing it...By drama laws,more than sure she would be pregnant after as they always happen in the first try eheem making him more likely even more into her...

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I don't think they could have gone with BH + CJ in any way that didn't involve killing SY or controlling her for the rest of her life. It was very clear that she's in there with him: he yells at her when her emotions start taking over: so BH staying in the past would've meant trapping a woman in her own body for the rest of her life so a couple of men could make use of it, and that would have turned off a very large number of female viewers: girls and women are controlled and erased enough in real life for the convenience of men without it being waved around as the perfect solution in tv shows as well. If they'd gone with that, I'd never have watched anything by those writers or the director or anything that featured the lead actors again: if you'll take a role that involves a scenario like that, I won't be among your fans because I'll take it for granted that you have no respect or concern for women.

I think it would also have left BH like a fish out of water: by the end of the show, his values have changed so much that he's nearly unrecognizable, and he'd have to spend the rest of his life out of his own time and knowing that he's not in his own body, that he's taken over someone else's life. The person he was at the start might have been fine with that because he was all about himself, but the person he is at the end wouldn't be, because he'd learned to care about the people around him, including SY: SY's more real to BH than she is to the King.

I'm wondering if it ended where it did because it's a perfect set-up for a Chapter 2. I could easily see BH moving into a relationship with another man: BH working in the Blue House and his BF running a restaurant that they're partners in, perhaps? Because a restaurant run by the head chef from the Blue House would be a pretty popular one, I'd think. And if you got a good writer, I bet they could come up with a time-slip that sent him and his BF -- or his husband? -- back to Joseon. After all, they didn't give a lot of detail about how BH went back in this one, and no one seems to have really missed it. And perhaps we could get clued in as to what SY was doing while he was controlling her body? If she had his memories the way he had hers and was controlling his body the way he did hers, perhaps it was her that repaired the camera? After all, he belted out of that bed like it'd been set on fire, so it wouldn't be hard to believe that he hadn't been comatose all the time. It would be a way to keep the original cast and introduce someone new as well so that BH's new relationship doesn't seem like some sort of patched-together BH/CJ fanservice, but a real relationship with its own backstoryright from the start.
And if we needed a crazy moment, imagine BH's BF and the King watching BH and SY discussing when 'they' were pregnant.

That's a Chapter 2 I'd really want to see.

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Excellently written. This was exactly what I felt. I loved LOVED this drama until about the last 30 min. When the drama ended I felt almost nothing because I was so disappointed how the drama ended.

The drama basically wrote Bonghwan out of his own drama at the end, despite him being the main character through the whole rest of the drama. My mom tried to justify it by saying Soyong was there the whole time, but that didn't matter at all. The main personality and person Cheoljong fell for was Bonghwan and not Soyong. She may have influenced his feelings and some of his actions by being buried deep in Bonghwan's subconscious but ultimately it was Bonghwan who fell in love with Cheoljong, and Cheoljong who fell in love with Bonghwan. The drama chickened out at the last moment to show this beautiful LGBT+ romance between Bonghwan and Cheoljong and it makes me so disappointed it went that direction (Oh My Ghostess did the same thing and I also was disappointed with that). I also am very upset that Cheoljong was shown to carry on like nothing changed. If he truly loved Sobong he would know they weren't the same person anymore. The whole last 30 min. were so incredibly disappointing and writing about it makes me more upset. Credit for all the sacrifices, hard work, and pain Bonghwan went through were given to someone else. He made some deep friendships and love while he was there and he was cheated out of even saying his goodbyes.

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Mr Queen could have become groundbreaking but it will be remembered as the drama with one or the worst endings ever instead.

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tbh i think itll still be groundbreaking. that ending is gonna be a teaser in the head for sure but it doesnt negate what the show did. i'm trying to put it into context of the shows outcome and our current environment etc. granted i havent WATCHED this part yet in real time because i dont want to feel this way.

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Oh, I've seen many worse endings. Don't watch cdramas if you think this was one of the worst endings 🤣

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I assumed that she was gone when he first arrived and then came back and they merged (when the inner thoughts became female and the Queen's behavior changed again). From that point on, we were watching both of them. The one with agency was Bongwan; but the love for the King and the desire to protect and do what is right primarily came from Soyong. How much was character growth and how much was Soyong taking over? Too bad they didn't explore it.

It might have worked better if there were two voices in the head for a while? But then you would run the risk of creating a Soyong Bonghwan ship; also would the relationship then be polygamist?

Maybe if there had been some scenes of Mr. Queen doing an action and then confused at why he did something so selfless?

At the very least, there should have been a conversation between Choeljong and Soyong, to let him know that she was only half the person she used be. And maybe some exposition to how much she had been involved (not satisfying, but less slap in face).

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I always saw it as cell memory after Bong Hwan returned to the body and him accepting it getting access to the memories and feelings left behind(upgrading it) as before he resisted it...They even pointed when he momentarily got back to his own body that the Queen's Body was "a corpse" mainly because it was empty,no spirit and would die if it stays like that...After in Ep 13 we clearly see her lying in that lake giving Bong Hwan her last memories of that night...So all of a sudded in the last 30min she is actually back all along in her body(can even two souls inhabit a body?)...Why even need till then to go to that lake if she was inside all along,making him suffer hiding...
At least the c-drama was decent in it's telling till it's end without adding BS and they have strict censorship going on there that would have banned the show from being released...Quite frank,i don't really care if Bong Hwan was a woman,a man or an alien as the story from the get go made him the main protagonist...That's my main peeve...They showed his journey and change with showing as well that the soul has no gender and one can love another one without bans as Cheoljong loved Bong Hwan just to give me that ending were we had So Yong who was more a bystander and minor character who we beraly saw more than when BH needed info. become all of a sudden the main lead...If that was the whole idea,they should have set it from the get go not make me root for a character 19.5 episodes and pull the rabbit in the last 30min. denying all the story told.

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Exactly just like why he told hyeng in that the woman he loves is no longer there and thts when it hit byeong in the king noticed immediately bcs he touched the Queen's dictionary and was like I feel like I lost something

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Given how the ratings fared well every episode, I believe the Korean audience would be more accepting to an LGBT-esque ending. Two men ending up together, sobong and cheoljong in joseon era. It tells us that love does not choose its form or gender. It happens when it happens. And the show robbed themselves the opportunity to portray this lesson in a conservative society like sokor.

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it was the opposite of OMG tho bc at least sobong was established and BH had been present. i stopped OMG because it was such a poor decision to do what they did. they held off and it was such a stark contrast. essentially here they sort of....kind of had to do that. in the end they created a situation they may not have totally stayed faithful to but OMG made the mistake of not establishing that situation or being consistent so when it introduced the true character in her body the show hadnt established any of that. here the problem is that they made the distinction clear, too clear and for good reason, and sorta...fucked it up. but i think that we have a literal whole show to prove that there's some missing connection for twhy their decision was made. essentially what i am saying is at least we can watch the show hten ignore the tiny little (big) detail of the end

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I think OMG handled the situation better. In OMG you atleast knew both characters, and the ML had interactions with both. The ghost who had been the main romance in the drama also was able to say goodbye and give that closure to the ML, and viewers, who was aware the woman he fell for was a ghost. In this drama there is no closure as CheolJong barely acknowledges the change in personality at the end and carries on like nothing happened, and BongHwan didn't get to say goodbye or get that closure. And the drama failed pretty spectacularly to show that SoBong was a combination of both. If a lot of viewers thought SoYoung died, then something went wrong. If the drama did a better job of establishing this and showing SoYoung as an actual character outside of memories and flashbacks, then I think the ending would have been less disappointing. These issues and the fact that BongHwan was practically written out of his own drama at the end is what my biggest issues were.

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I have the impression looking stricly drama wise that the writer based his show quite a lot with the original drama(didn't read the novel so can't say how much difference is between those and alike this one)while pinning the episode scripts but on the way of the writing had the problem with the ending as those who watched Go Princess Go know that the Queen/Empress there was just a vessel and source of info for the soul of the man inside and nothing more,they didn't care at all for her nor she ever came back and here mostly for some time was the same,So Yong the extra providing convinient info for BH and plot movement but nothing more...Now that is just my own speculation...

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I agree with all of this but still have a less negative feel towards the ending. Maybe because I was for SoYoung from the beginning and I never felt she was gone completely. SoBong was always a merger of both but the show did SoYoung and BongHwan disservice by not showing how SoYoung positively influenced BongHwan to be “all in” for Cheoljong. I also think the show could have done a better job of showing how SoYoung and Cheoljong handled BongHwan’s departure instead of a couple of throw away lines of SoYoung saying “he’s gone” and “he awakened my true nature” and Cheoljong wondering “did I lose something”.
It would have been good if they had shown SoYoung and Cheoljong have a conversation about BongHwan and how they both missed him and acknowledged his contributions. They could have cut out the Queen Dowager and Yeongpeon’s visit with HwaJin and used that time to show Cheoljong and SoYoung bonding over BongHwan.
I did appreciate seeing Choi Jin-Hyuk again in the end. 😍
Overall I liked the drama and though a bit disappointed in the ending would still take it over a bunch of other ones I finished like Hi! Bye! Mama or Was it love?.

A rating for acting, concept, execution
C for ending.

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I felt somewhat bittersweet with this ending too. It feels like it's Bong Hwan who did all the foundation works and So Yong just came to reap the benefit.

The moment So Yong takes control of the body, it felt like everything falls flat.

Obviously the one Cheoljong in love with is So Bong, not So Yong. I don't think Cheoljong would ever have that sort of passionate romance if it is just So Yong alone.

I kept thinking of the aftermath, several months later, wouldn't Cheoljong feel like the Queen is now so plain and eventually the romance diminished?

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Well, you can read into it whatever you want to read into it: I think that was more or less the intention.

Anyone invested in having it a gay romance will want to believe that SY was dead so BH could have her body. You'd have to kill her off because you'd have a hard time pushing BH/CJ as a perfect romance if it's going to mean some woman is trapped in her own mind so that the lovers can have her body to use. And of course they're going to want to think that SY was boring and bland and she and the King could never possibly have had the kind of hot sex that BH and CJ did: if you don't erase her, how can the King spend the rest of his life longing for his 'real' love and hoping to meet HB in his next life?

I get the 'get rid of SY no matter how you do it' if you're all for the BH/CJ interpretation, but I honestly think the King's character would need changes before either interpretation could really be believable.

First he's so in love with Hwa-jin that he doesn't care who knows it. (Complete to picking her up and leaving his unconscious wife on the ground in full view of everybody. If someone wants to take her away, fine; if not, whatever.) Then he's all bent out of shape about SY being a Kim: he'd be perfectly happy to have her dead -- but even when she puts on that endless screeching, off-with-their-heads b***h performance, he doesn't just let her go; then he's attracted to BH, and then he's attracted to the intermittently re-emerging SY, and then he's completely head over heels for the pair of them.

Okay, SY did the whole 'perfect noble lady' to "perfect absolute unrelenting harpy" change, so she could be said to have had one change under her belt and was obviously capable of being far more than the sweet, predictable little lamb, but BH made for a woman like absolutely NO other. That wasn't just a change, that was a revolution. Then BH is gone and while the audience can believe that neither BH or SY is the same person that they were at the start by a couple of miles, the King doesn't really even seem to notice. When BH wakes up in his own time, he still remembers the past, so logic says that SY would have to still have his memories as well, but even so -- nothing but just that little twinge? CJ's great at the 'sweep her into your arms' thing, but I just wanted to smack him and say "Pay attention to people already!"

For as crazy as it sounds, I ended up shipping SY and BH. They made such a difference to each other, and SY seemed more real to BH than she ever was to the King. I loved the bit where he told the King that he should have paid all this attention to SY before she tried to kill herself. And he changes as much as she does: at the end, he's the person I kept thinking he should have been right from the start. He cares about other people and he's thinking far beyond just himself; you can see him walking into a future that could include anything -- preferably a real love story...

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I agree with you! Felt so sorry for bong hwan when he was left reading about what happened to cheoljong in the bookstore. The finale left much to be desired, but to be positive... for a sageuk, they did have a pretty low body count and none of our lovable characters died. :)

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I am glad that BH finally went back were he was suppose to and the queen got the love from the king. The scene from library showed the character growth of BH from a selfish jerk to someone who started caring for others. In a way SY also got rid of her feeling of loner. She was there always and the person king loved was in a way both SY and BH (BH's weirdness and SY's sincere love towards the king). I did feel sad when the king was looking at the "Queen's dictionary " and missing the whole weirdness. Its resonated with my feelings. But I guess there is no other way they could have wrapped it up. Everybody got their happy ending and at the end of the day I am happy that I invested my time into a series that managed to stay entertaining all through its run.

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Well I gotta say this ending soured the whole drama for me. I'm sorry but the only So Yong we got to know was the depressed suicidal queen who was manifestly unhappy and could not stand against both her family and her husband.

And now she gets a happily ever after she never earned? I could have lived with a purely So Yong ending, if that's what the show had been building towards throughout the show, if we had seen Cheoljong fall in love with So Yong independently of Bong Hwan's influence. But throughout the drama Cheoljong stated he had fallen for the person that was largely Bong Hwan's influence.

I never expected this drama to go into a BL direction, but the drama never really gave us an indication that So Yong's influence extended beyond starting the initial rush of feelings. I know some people say that the kiss during the king's visit to the queen's home was all So Yong, but nothing the show had given us beforehand had shown us that the Queen had that kind of personality. To me it was more likely that it was So Yong's (residual) feelings taking over, but Bong Hwan's personality dictated how that kiss would go.

And during the course of the drama I thought it was obvious that So Bong was developing feelings for Cheoljong independently of So Yong's influence. But I also thought that the final scene in which we saw So Yong (before the end), in which she drifts off into the dark waters, was supposed to be a goodbye to her and a final melding of So Yong's and Bong Hwan's souls.

This ending doesn't just shaft Bong Hwan though, or even Cheoljong who will have to now live with a woman who once again is different from what he thought she was (does no one see the irony that now So Yong has become the new Hwa Jin?), it also shafts So Yong. She never personally got to be the one to enact revenge, she never personally got to right the wrongs done against her or in her name. If you want to give me an ending that involves So Yong living out her happy days with Cheoljong, you need to give me reason to root for her and Cheoljong, beyond the vague impression that "oh she was there for all of it".

That's not even to talk of the fact that according to some screenshots i've seen translated that Cheoljong still dies at 32 and has no children. Some happy ending that is...

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About that first kiss, I agree with you. It was always more Bonghwan than Soyong. Just watch the scene, she is kissing like a man. She is dominating Cheoljong. I never understood how people could think that Soyong came back in that scene.

My problem lies with the fact, that Soyong magically appearing seems rushed and last minute. I don't know if the ending was originally different, because it was indicated, numerous times in the drama, Soyong is dead.

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I wonder the same thing about the ending, I think the writer had a different ending in mind.

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I actually ranted about the ending to my non-Kdrama watcher friend and she said the same, that it sounds like the ending was originally different. It felt awfully like that, that is for sure.

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I totally agree. I have a strong suspicion that this ending was not what the writer originally had in mind. It felt like a last-minute decision. And the episode of CJ and SY's first meeting in the Bamboo Forest spin-off was hoped to justify this choice :(

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The ending felt like someone put a gun to the writers’ heads.

I think the original ending was supposed to be that Bong Hwan is the reincarnation of So Yong. The original ending was supposed to be that there was always just one soul from the start. Bong Hwan was supposed to accept that he wasn’t living in someone else’s body, that So Yong’s body was his own because So Yong was his past life. Maybe Bong Hwan’s body would die in the future because it was damaged too greatly and Bong Hwan would remain in the past with people he came to love and cherish.

To be honest, I think the spin-off was served as the justification for So Yong/Cheoljong endgame. I find it highly suspicious they didn’t include their first dreamy meeting if the meeting was so impactful for both of them.

I find it ridiculous when people say Cheoljong had feelings for So Yong from the start. He saw her for 2 minutes and people think he loved her? He was intrigued by her beauty and familiarity. If he truly loved her like he loved So Bong, would he be able to put the sword on her neck like he did in episode 3?

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I am curious when Bamboo Forest was shot. They obviously foreshadowed the reincarnation plot in the first half of the drama when SoBong explains alternate universes and then it comes back in Bamboo Forest VERY heavily.

Let me put up my tinfoil hat and theorize too. I would personally guess that the spinoff was shot earlier. Why? Because it is implied in I think the 2nd episode (when Cheoljong thinks Sobong heard their plan) that Cheoljong has feelings for Soyong. At that time, I thought it would be their way out of being BL-ish (and will bring Soyong back in the picture, obviously if they want to go that way but nah). So it turns out, he did feel some type of attraction towards Soyong but it turned sour pretty fast. If they were one soul, it would be quite cute and doesn't change a lot of things because he was attracted to her body and later with Sobong, her soul too. So in my opinion, the meet cute was planned out but it now paints a different picture because of the ending.

But back to Bamboo Forest. The reincarnation talk is so heavy handed that I can't believe that they did nothing with it when it was sprinkled throughout the drama and ENDED the spinoff with the "being reborn" talk. I feel like, logically, they set it up but we never got the payoff which doesn't make sense from a writer's point of view. Setups exist for a reason, like with Soyong. There was never a setup for bringing her back, it makes absolutely no sense and feels cheap.

If there really was an original ending, I bet it would have played out in the future with all the past cast reincarnated and crossing roads. I am not sure what happened in their past lives but the future was so in your face suggested.

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It was shot sometime in January, after they had already wrapped up the filming for the main story ;)

To add, on the 15th of January KJH did a live on IG while he was on set, it looked like they were filming the episode about Soyong/Cheoljong first meeting.

Also, the special episodes were written by another screenwriter, as far as I know..I believe it might have been because the original one was busy with another drama that's gonna air next month (Joseon Exorcist)..just my guess, though.

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Thanks @Lelly19 I tried to search for info about shooting but I don't have IG or Twitter so I am forever lost.
So they shot the spinoff after the ending, huh? I was kinda hoping they didn't do it to justify the ending but I was wrong. It is worse this way imo :(

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Also So Yong herself said that Cheoljong looks at her with hate and BongHwan as well realized he despised her not to mention Cheoljong was already with Hwa Jin all sweet so to say all of a sudden that he was actualy in love with her after he saw her 2 min. is beyond me...He clearly changed when he saw her at the Queen Selection when he figured out who she was...She was the only one infatuated and in love as well,she was a young maiden who meet a dashing young man...Not to mention that he clearly told care he wouldn't change his impression of her no matter what and not batting an eye to take her life himself...He started to waver and change his feelings all because of BH nonsense and started to get attracted and pulled in without him even knowing it because of his personality,strangeness and that Sobong(Bong Hwan in SY body) had no rules,was brush,far from perfect Queen material,called him Cheoljong when no one in the whole show did,talked arrogant and he liked it...Even when he confessed he mentioned all the things that consisted BH as he never knew SY.The bitter irony when he told SoYong why is she talking formal with him all of a sudden and not talk like always...
Doubt the original idea was for SY to even comeback...It's like they filmed the 19 episodes and found themselves with ep 20 script that negated all the plot told beforehand...

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100% agree. Looking at comments from various sites, a lot of people do and for the very reasons you list here. The writers focused all their attention on the CJ/SB relationship and built it up perfectly to where we got the underwater scene where it seemed like the last bits of SY faded away (I honestly thought she was dead at that point) and SB was "complete" - I always thought their souls were reincarnations. Then SY just comes in and takes all the credit with no real acknowledgement from CJ that the person who intrigued him and made him fall passionately in love was gone. The ending just broke my heart, seeing CJ and SB become such a strong couple and then a virtual stranger all of a sudden replace one of them and life just go on.

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I also thought she was dead, so when she comes back after Bonghwan leaves I was kinda shocked.

I mentioned in a comment above but I was also super disappointed that Cheoljong doesn't seem to acknowledge that the person he fell in love with has even changed. He was shown to carry on like nothing was wrong or anything had changed. If he truly did love Sobong, he would have known that something wasn't right.

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Like a slap in the face we could say how they did it even more after SoBong told Byoung In he never recognized the one he loved wasn't there just to have Cheoljong do exactly the same thing...I mean yeah,he did shown it twice(when he felt he lost something and when he asked why he talks formally unlike her) but overall it was the same and i can't knowing Cheoljong as this observant man we got to know,that observed every little detail of SoBong memorizing her every word,even the most useless stuff(like all her hard strage words,even when she said them low or u could think he wouldn't memorize it),her manners,way of walking, Cheoljongie etc. all of a sudden be replaced wth "My King",the Joseon way of talking,the manners...Even a blind would notice the sudden change.

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Bong-Hwan reclaiming his life and changing the future pretty much confirms the theory that his interview back in episode 1 (where he mentions that he was not the youngest but the "first" chef in the Blue House) happened after he manages to get back to the present.

While I do not have any complaints with the ending as it was better than what I expected, I do want to point out some missed opportunities we could've seen such as So-Bong being a combination of a doting mother and a proud father as well as seeing him raise his children with Chol-jeong. The second leads, as well as Prince Young-pyeong, were underutilized as well. They didn't even had to kill Byeong-in to redeem himself, the show could have allowed him to live his life while trying to atone for his sins and seek forgiveness whilst helping the innocent people he wronged and that would have been better than his fate in the show.

There are still a lot of plot holes and things left unexplained in this show, but that doesn't stop me from liking it (subjectively). The second leads weren't developed properly, but the side characters were wonderful people with fun stories. The cast, especially the leads, were pretty solid whether doing funny, dramatic, serious, or even romantic scenes. Kim Jung-Hyun rocked every scene he was in, but Shin Hye-sun was amazing in making us see her as both So-yong and Bong-hwan in just her gaze. I have watched every drama she was in and she rocked every single role she was given, but she keeps on improving with every drama she might as well portray 10 different people in one drama and I'd still believe that they're different people.

I will surely miss this crack of a show, but I can't wait to see the cast of this show in their future projects. Thank you for making my weekends so much better, Mr. Queen.

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As for So-yong getting her body back and living her life as the Queen after Bong-Hwan (wrecked) changed everything, I'd like to believe that So-yong and Bong-Hwan are the same soul, with So-yong as the past life version and Bong-Hwan as the present version. Both were in a powerless position where they could lose their lives in the hands of evil people. Kim Jwa-geun told So-yong before that she won't be able to do anything because she's a woman, so the present version of her soul came back to her body as a stronger version of herself in Bong-Hwan in order to create a new future where So-yong was able to help Chol-jeong win. This may also be the reason why they shared memories, why she was able to influence Bong-hwan with her feelings, as well as the reason why some qualities of Bong-hwan were already present in her before the switch, except the modern references (as seen in the spinoff). The world they both live in now is a parallel one (as So-bong explained to Dam-hyang before).

The epilogue also hints at this theory (Bong-hwan being So-bong's reincarnation) as seen on the last short on Mr Queen: Bamboo Forest (spin-off). The characters are all seen wishing for their rebirth:

1. Court Lady Choi wishing to be reborn as So-bong's mom (Bong-hwan's Mom taught him about Korean history)

2. Hong-Yeon wishing to be reborn as So-bong's sister (my mind is a bit fuzzy right now but I think Bong-hwan mentioned having a sister)

3. Man-Bok wishing to meet his family again (he could be Bong-hwan's dad, because the people in the palace were quite like his family)

4. I LOLed so much when Director Hong wished to be born as a rock so he wouldn't have to do anything and Prince Young-pyeong wishing to be reborn just to kick that rock

5. Chol-jeong wishing to meet the Queen in the future (and we will, sadly, never see this).

Maybe Shin Hye-sun is just an amazing actress, so I couldn't even hate the fact that we will no longer see So-bong and the King together, and instead just root for the real So-yong and the King. (The ending with the real So-yong receiving Chol-jeong's love kind of reminds me of what happened in Oh My Ghostess, a show where Shin Hye-sun was also a cast member).

I would've really appreciated it if the show have shown us where the characters are in the present, especially Chol-jeong, because the part of the ending where he feels like something is missing was just sad and I wanted to see him and Bong-hwan/So-bong team up together again. 🥺😩😭

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Aaw, love the parallel world theory. Was also wondering about their wishes and whether they will come true, and those are well-made points!
Seeing the 2021 version of Cheoljong + everyone would really be my wish... We need to know too whether Hong-yeon bought any land in Gangnam ><

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If I'm being honest, the parallel world theory is just me trying to make the ending of the drama as well as the epilogue work for me.

I would like to see rich lady Hong-yeon too! HAHA. And lady Choi as Bong-hwan's mom would be really hilarious. The missed opportunities are making me a little bit sad 😩

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why did he feel like something was missing??

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Because the So-yong he's with now no longer uses foreign words and slang so RIP Queen's Dictionary :(((

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oh!!! not sure how i failed to catch that message. thanks! so sad for cheoljong that's why!

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Because the queen is there but his real queen is wasn't there

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Ohhh! The reincarnation sounds interesting and how I wish the show explored on this more so we won't have the feeling of Oh My Ghostess.

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I wished they explored more on the reincarnation thingy based on their wishes too! The epilogue was really nice but I can't say that it was enough because I really wanted to see Chol-jeong and Bong-hwan seeing each other again.

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Same. I actually hoped the scene would changed to 2021 after Chol-jeong's wish, him being reincarnated into a woman. I guess, that needed more backstory. I do think Kim Jung-hyun is capable of cosplaying a woman... or we can definitely go with them both as men as well.

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theyre for sure the same person. well in my brain. the show is like an ode to the idea of a person being a person instead of like...........some bullshit foisted upon circumstance. they are one and that's what makes their existence so beautiful. like someone here said theyre truly the embodiment of "them" and i think the show really helped a lot of us realize what that could potentially look like. so bong is this really cool soul and the show does justice to her existence (mostly.)

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So-Bong is truly amazing. They are the main reason why this show was so fun to watch to be honest.

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Dang it. After writing and posting my comments, I realized something that I would love to see: Bong-Hwan applying what he learned as a woman in the present. Imagine him actually advocating for women's rights in the present and doing so much more. The amount of Bong-Hwan in the ending was never enough for me.

And also So-Bong as a mother. I will never shut up about this. 🥺😩

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lets pretend he used his time being rpegnant to get more abortion advocacy ;) nah but rly it would be cool lol

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Bong-Hwan being an advocate would be really cool to see! I can imagine him saying that if it's your body, then it's your choice to do whatever you want to do with it and that includes whether you want to have kids or not!

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Kinda sad we didn't get like in Go Princess Go to see SoBong pregnancy,childbirth and taking care of her child having indeed a genius kid and that they chose to kill Byung In,who in the c-drama still lived...I think the better choice would have been to let him leave and choose to help those in need or find himself as well as he had started as a honest man despite his family.

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I was really excited to see the show go on the Go Princess Go direction: either they wreck the ending like in the drama adaptation or give the characters proper closure like in the novel.

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What I loved was the moment where Bong-hwan looks at the history book and both laughs and cries because the love of his life has achieved all that, intercut with the scene of Cheolyong looking at the Queen's Dictionary and fully appreciating he's lost something. It was so bittersweet and oddly meaningful that it made me tear up a bit.

The 'happy ending' after that I'm just going to ignore. As So-yong had said to Byung-in earlier: 'if you didn't notice that I became a different person, you just loved the shell.' I don't want to think that Cheolyong purely loved the shell of So-yong.

I adored this series but for me, in a way, both guys lost out on the great love of their lives. They did manage to reform the country. Well, I guess that's something XD

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i totally agree. strangely, watching that ending felt kinda weird because we know that it's not so bong anymore. it's prolly the first drama whereby i miss an un-seen character (cos choi jin hyuk only appeared in 3 episodes??) and this is also due to the fact that shin hae sun was able to carry off bong hwan so well! I was more sad that bo hwan left so yong's body than when they both got shot! i think shin hae sun and choi jin hyuk should do a comedy together too! it would be a blast.

during Kim Jung Hyun's live IG, he did mention that it didnt matter whether it was so yong or so bong but it's the person he likes....but i'm still confused. LOL. Love cheoljong nonetheless. He's a hottie cutie.

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As soon as CJ asked SY about her use of honorifics and I realized that he didn't even recognize that she wasn't the same person he had fallen in love with, my first thought was that he was pulling a Byeong-In. A part of me even wondered if that's why they had BI make that final comment as he was dying questioning why he never noticed the change.

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I found it hilarious the last line of the drama of this supposed happy ending was from Cheoljong. He didn’t recognise it wasn’t So Bong anymore and he was written as a smart person.

He thought his eccentric wife tried to prank him again but it was So Yong’s real personality. I don’t know if I should laugh or cry.

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i would totally cry! it's...soooo sad. it was physically a happy ending but emotionally, it was plain death. boooo hoooooooo!

but still love at least 19.5 episodes. and their kiss from the spinoff. my heart........

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Also So Bong last kiss with Cheoljong from the last episode were she sensed it without knowing her end kissing him one last time...

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Can I butt in this and add my 2 cents? I think Cheoljong did realize Bonghwan is not there but he refuses to acknowledge it. He told that to Soyong to make light out of it and play it off. You know, to get some confirmation back that there is indeed nothing wrong, she is different because she is pranking him. That is how it came off to me at least, because he does wonder if he lost something. So the thought is there, he just doesn't dare to think deeper and question Soyong openly, hence him joking about her formality. "What I don't know, doesn't hurt". That is what I say to myself and that was my first interpretation so I am sticking with it because I would not be able to bear the thought that Cheoljong is dumb lol

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If they managed to butcher the last 30 minutes of this otherwise excellent drama I’m not surprise they turned Cheoljong into someone dumb too.

Cheoljong was able to remember every single word Bong Hwan told him but he didn’t recognise his wife is different? The only expansion is that they were forced to change the ending of the drama and that’s why the last 30 minutes didn’t make sense at all.

People in DC Gallery said Choi Jin Hyuk was called to shoot additional scenes after the last episode script reading which makes me believe they really had to change the original ending. If you think about it from the perspective that they were forced to change the ending, pieces of puzzle come together pretty clearly.

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did they say why? it's incredibly time-consuming and expensive to do re shoots or add something if they hadnt put it into the script. that's like a huge hassle so i'm very curious what the details are lol

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it isnt unheard of though just very inefficient lol

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Never heard of CJH had to shoot additional scenes but it makes sense. So us, who feel like the ending was possibly changed, may not be far off from the truth? I am super sad, actually. Would have preferred a miscalculation from the writers than full on censorship IF it is true.

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Yes, the moment when BH laugh/cries in the book shop as he sees the portrait and remembers all that went with it! It made my heart twinge: CJ was trying so hard in the moment - and failing - to make So Bong laugh; in the end, the portrait did exactly what CJ wanted: BH laughed so hard. It felt like at that moment BH began to process what he had lost - so unsatisfying that he was left without closure.

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Not satisfied with the ending, glad that BH returned to his original era but I think SY should’ve died, it’s not convincing that she’s back like nothing happened people will notice the change in her character! And the king loved BH not SY!

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Two words... Shin Hyesun!!!!
As much as I appreciate the witty comedy from both the writer and the director, Shin Hyesun turnt that fantasy into a fantastic reality!

And I just LOVE how Soyong came up at the end without making it looks like we're erasing Bonghwan out of the picture because she actually had been through everything WITH Bonghwan💜

Ugh I was totally ready for dissapointment because the last few episodes feels too much of political antics but they came through! DEFINITELY ONE OF THE BEST AND MAY THIS CATAPULTED SHIN HYESUN'S CAREER EVEN FURTHER!

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I think I'm part of the minority group who wasn't satisfied with the ending. It's a sweet happy ending, sure, but that is exactly part of the problem for me personally, it's just too sugary sweet and somehow the ending doesn't feel integral to the whole plotline they have built from 1 to 19. I've read a comment somewhere on Instagram, that this whole story is actually based on a novel, and in that novel, Bong Hwan was actually a reincarnation of So Yong's soul, so it's basically one soul, two bodies, and at the end one body just had to die. Since it's a sageuk drama, dead bodies are not actually a foreign concept, rite? If I get to choose, I would rather have Bong Hwan died in the modern era, and So Bong stayed in Joseon. I don't really buy the narative that Cheoljong fell in love with her at the first sight. Attracted to her, sure, definitely. But not in love yet. The one he fell in love with was Sobong. The way they took the route of 2 souls in one body as a solution, made the question arise of who did actually Cheoljong fell in love with? I think I would rather the writer left that area grey instead of so stark black and white like this. But, hey, that's just me.

All in all, I enjoy this drama tremendously. Shin Hye Sun and Kim Jung Hyun's acting skill were superb! I'll definitely give them a standing applause. Bravo!

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exactly my point. Cheoljong fell in love withn the crazy, wonderful, supportive, and ready to call you out, Bong Hwan. and not the dutiful, and humble So Bong.

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Even the production and Kim Jong Hyun calls BongHwan in Soyong SoBong jajaja

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*Kim Jung Hyun ,
Me wants an edit button!

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Have you seen the Instagram account SHS created for So Bong? The name she put there was "Kim So Bong"

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It wasn’t. The instagram accounts name is Jang Soyong.

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@byzantines Could it be she has changed it after the episode where So Bong declared herself as Jang So Yong in front of the ministers?

Because I clearly remember that's what google translate gave me

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I think the point is that Sobong wasn’t just Bongwhan and neither were they *just* Soyong. It was a completely separate person made up of both of them- “Jang Soyong” full of the best traits of the two people. We can debate on how obvious they made that, but the bittersweet ending isn’t that because CJ loved Bongwhan and Bongwhan only (although BH came away loving him I’ll go to my grave saying that), he loved Sobong and whilst something will always be missing for him and more importantly Soyong, he decided to throw caution to the wind and love her as whatever she was long ago after realising the error of her ways. The way people talk about Sobong and Soyong in relation to each other rubs me a little the wrong way when she was still in there the entire time- and low-key sexist.

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Let's just agree to disagree, okay? 😉 I've read all of your comments in this thread, and I kinda get the impression that you keep trying to 'correct' people's way of perceiving this story or the character of Sobong. Please forgive me if this was not your intention at all.

Let's just accept that each of us perceived the story and So Bong/So Yong character in our own way. I love a good story and a good story-telling, and that's what makes me react strongly and quite bitterly over the ending of what otherwise could have been (in my eyes) a five-stars story.

I totally respect your view on it, but I stick to my opinion as stated here, as well as to what I said in the other comments.

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No problem! Forgive me but I'm definitely not, I was just trying to push back at the idea that SY wasn't in there so it wasn't "deserved". I actually liked SB a lot more too, and I respect other people's way of perceiving the story- it would be boring if we all viewed something the same way! I think what I'm trying to say is that the writers dropped the ball in what they were trying to achieve and ended up with mixed reactions and interpretations when it could have been a wholly positive reaction and a one overarching way of the story. I think what I'm trying to say is that I *got* what the writers intended, and I think that due to a ton of reasons, they let other things get in the way of sticking the landing to what they intended, hence mixed reactions and interpretations. :)

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@byzantines I actually have the same opinion as yours regarding what you said about the writer. And that's what I regretted the most about the ending of this story, the 'what could have been... ' 😔

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My only disagreement with what you wrote is that I think your feelings (which are also my own) are not in the minority. Most comments and even reviews - though not this one - have many people feeling that the ending was bittersweet and that CJ loved SB and not SY - at least not that the writers were able to convey to us.

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I don’t think you’re in minority, international fans are mostly ripping the ending apart.

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i think it's already a good ending when we know that they are alive and bong hwan went back. i'd wish they leave it there instead of having cheoljong looking at the diary and the last hug at the end. urrrggghhhhh....

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Glad to hear I'm not the only few people who' griping over the ending! 😄 Most comments I saw online were gushing and drooling over how satisfying and sweet the ending was. Now I see that many of the beanies here echoed my sentiment. I do feel like the ending was intended to be crowd-pleaser (don't know which crowd exactly, 'though) 😅

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For me Cheoljong fell in love and truly loved was Bong Hwan or more SoBong and not So Yong....Yes,they added that lousy special of their first meeting before the Selection of the Queen and he looked at her as she looked familiar and might even be attracted to her but other than that till Bong Hwan came he despised her and even Bong Hwan realized it when he read her memories and saw Cheoljong's eyes,that can't be faked...Also that Bong Hwan nonsense spared her life as Cheoljong would have killed her without an hesitation...Cheoljong feel for the impulsive,strange,not caring about the norms,talking banmal woman not the deer like So Yong who he actually never knew...And of course he would find her strange when little when she told him she came to die,but he didn't know the context as she wasn't really strange at all...Mainly this story as in synopsys is Bong Hwan story,they just played it safe in the end making So Yong soul rise from that lake and back.

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I enjoyed this drama so much! I’m going to miss watching it every week. It kept Its humour, romance and heart till the very end. The actors did such a great job with an especially outstanding performance by shin hye-sun. She played each character so differently that when it changed you knew. All the mannerisms and tone of voice completely changed. I am happy everyone got a happy ending or redeemed themselves in the end.
Also I know there was some criticism about how the end swap and SY getting a happy ending. This is my take on it . The reason so-bong couldn’t call the original soul back was because she didn’t leave. The original soul was always there either suppressed or entwined, hence the memories. I feel that since the original soul was so scared and hopeless she let bong-hwan just take over for a while while she hid. The comment that “oh he finally left” shows that she was aware of it. She even points out how her true nature has been revealed what with her random cursing etc. after her meeting with the grand dowager. something I don’t think would have happened before. I think both souls came out the better, making her stronger, assertive and ready to make the changes to the court, and him a better less smarmy person( who know maybe less of a womaniser) . As for the king realising he lost something, it would have been nice to explore it more, and have him move forward, but he was still happy and I think some of that crazy behaviour may come out every so often but much more toned down. Over all I’m am pleased with it as a whole.
Btw the special episodes are great if you miss all this we have come to love

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fun fact: when this drama started, I was totally engrossed in it. it was basically the only kdrama I was interested in week after week.

There was a lot of laughter, frustration and fun just watching the drama. I was so eager to watch the finale but after watching the last 2 episodes, I just did not feel anything. It was as if, the finale left me confused than before, with more questions than answers. like how did the real So yong remember all that happened in her body when she wasn't even there. also the king, how did he not realise the after effects of when Jang Bo Hwan left. it was so obvious. Even the bullet proof vest they claimed they wore, when did they even make it. I don't know, but I just did not feel fulfilled about it, and not just the reasons stated above, they are just difficult to explain

On a brighter note, I would give the drama 90%, it was that good. and I would definitely miss the OST. 'Bong Hwan a! Bong Hwan a!' I actually thought it was "Omona!'. anyways I am sad to see it finish. what else can I watch, and I am not feeling the vibe with any other drama at the moment

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Shin Hye-sun and Kim Jung-hyun! I know it's entirely impossible to get the same pairing in a different drama but I want them in another! Whatever the story would be, I'd gladly watch them act together again.

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but usually, the drama wouldnt end up being well received due to the story i think...this is tough indeed!

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Depends, there are plots out there that are well received but aren’t really my cup of tea. But it would be lovely to see them again in another project since it’s quite rare.

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i could only think of the lee dong wook and yoo inna drama after they completed the Goblin as the second lead couple. It was a terrible drama even though it stars both of them! LOL

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Touch Your Heart was not the best out there. It did give me an OST that I like by Wendy and a handsome & beautiful cast at the last ep.

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I also want to see Choi JunHyuk and Shin HyeSun in a drama and Kim JungHyun and Choi JinHyuk in a buddy comedy.

Praying to the drama gods!

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Oh that’s a good casting. May we see more of them in future projects!

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I loved this drama, but I must echo the other beanies just a little bit. My biggest gripe with the drama is we never got to meet So Yong, not really, and so her ending seems unearned. I would disagree with the other beanies that it was all Bong Hwan though. I think at a certain point they merged. It was a combination of Bong Hwan and So Yong, not just her memories, but her as well. The problem is the writer didn't take the time to flesh that part of her out, but you see glimpses of her in BI's memory and also maybe people forget, but she kissed Bong Hwan when they were both in the water. So she did have some fire, we just never truly got to see it.

That being said all hail Queen Shin Hye Sun and King Kim Jung Hyun because they were beautifully matched. I enjoyed every second of this.

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I think it would’ve been nice if we got to see more of So Yong pre-fall. In the intro it was hinted that she gave the maids a lot of trouble so maybe she wasn’t such a prim & proper lady and had more of Bong Hwan’s spitfire personality before they even crossed souls.

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That is another good example. She had fire, we just didn't get to see it showcased.

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Soyong treated the maids so bad because she wanted out of being Queen. I guess she hoped she would be kicked out. Was it Grand Queen Dowager who mentioned it the night she fell to the lake? That it won't work. So Soyong only pretended being mean and fiery.

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She may have pretended to be mean, but it takes bravery and fire to pretend to be mean enough to be kicked out of the palace. Look at what happened to the deposed consort. She knew what would happen and did it anyway.

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she was going to commit suicide to basically save her life. she was pretending to be a terror to get the fuck out, realized she had literally nothing and made 0 decisions on her own, then was like OH WORD? and fuckin yeeted into a lake. pretty badass. that's exactly why throughout the drama everyone has said that she's never been normal.

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This!! It was always SoBong or Jang SoYoung that was the driving force for like 19 episodes not just BongHwan. SoYoung is hinted as determined and ambitious (wanting to be queen) but principled (not wanting to spy or her husband or take part in palace games), accomplished (good in all things a Jeoson era lady would be) and a little unconventional (reading a lot of political books and strategy, something that other ladies didn’t do). So she had a strong personality but was naive and sheltered at the same time so the palace broke her. The show should have done more to make it obvious that SoYoung was always there.
The only scenes were they showed more of SoYoung was her interaction with her father. They show their tendency to talk at the same time and laugh the same way and even SoBong says something like blood will tell or families.
My thought or theory is that SoYoung was mildly infatuated with Cheoljong and then hoped that he could be her ally in the palace. but wasn’t in love with him. She lost hope when her last hope didn’t pan out and tried suicide. she fell in love with him only when she was part of the SoBong merger and could interact more with Cheoljong and understand him more. I feel like for 19 episodes there were three characters interacting - BongHwan, SoYoung, and Cheoljong but the show chose to only hint at SoYoung’s presence instead of clearly showing it which is causing a lot of discontent among viewers.

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This! Truly agree. I for one am satisfied with the ending as I had accepted from the get go (was it episode 7?)that SoYong was alive and that they were So Bong not Bong Hwan alone. Yes, execution wise they could have made it better but the show chose the comedic route, which is showing Bong Hwan more. I also accepted from the very start that CJH is only a cameo here so there will never be a full episode just about BH in the present and after. This plus suspended disbelief carried me through an enjoyable ride and I was entertained.

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I was concerned how the drama will be wrapped with 2 episodes left but I think the knot was tied quite nicely...although I felt bittersweet that So-Bong didn't stay in Joseon..Bong Hwas has a life in the present time and after the injustice he experienced, being sent back to the present time with the injustice cleared is not a bad thing, but still, I feel bittersweet. Kudos to SHS that the So-Bong and So-Yong are acted so well that with a subtle change, I already know that it's So-Yong not So-Bong 😭. I'll miss So-Bong so much. It is nice that everybody is back to their rightful place but I can't stop feeling a little regret about So-Bong......

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I am satisfied with the ending 😍. Even though it is true that Cheoljong fell in love with bong hwans personality will he still love bong hwan if he came from his male form? I highly doubt that. As far as i know Cheoljong was not gay 😅 (no disrespect to LGBT community intended). He would be a best friend of course but not a love interest. Turns out so young was always inside her body but not as dominant as bong hwan so his personality came out more but i think so youngs ideas also came through. Specially after the vegetative state she really started to come out more as Cheoljong fell more and more in love with so bong. So i feel every thing BH and SY did they did it kind of together. I also think bong hwan deserves a life in his own era in his own body and so young also deserves full control of her own body. Although it is sad that Cheoljong misses that special craziness of so bong which was really endearing to him as per the history (in this story) his marriage with so young was not affected. So i am really happy with how things turned out.

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tbh this is part of the problem. it doesnt even matter and if it did so bong is a girl but also not but also yes. who cares. the point is that they're people. it's a shame the show did this to itself where now it's like a discussion on who is gay or not when that's like so far beyond the grander point. shame.

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Right? It's getting beyond the point of what the show was trying to say.

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we know the #truth

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I echo a lot of the disappointing comments but I don't hate it and I do understand why the writers went the way they did (it might be long though sorry in advance lol). At the end of this day this drama was a rare one: it was like a beautiful three course meal in a great restaurant with a wonderful atmosphere. The wine tastes great and isn't expensive. You order creme brulee for dessert and when you dig in the sugar doesn't snap and it's a bit curdled, but it still tastes good. The overall experience was still pretty great, and this is how I feel about this drama.

As soon as the writers said they weren't doing the GPG ending and the fact that they made Soyong as character by herself rather than *just* the past version of Bongwhan like in the book, I knew it could get messy. I also realised that early on (ep 7) Soyong was still in there, and that Bongwhan was losing more and more of himself in there, hence "them". However, because of the politics plot and because they were clearly just loving SHS performance as Sobong you can tell it got away from them. They showed and not told, but they didn't make it nearly clear enough. They decided to take a story about trojan horse BL and gender roles and make it into a story commenting on women's agency and sexism in Korea- literally planting a 21st century chauvanist in the body of a Joseon era queen and have him deal with all the realities he faces and have him develop into less of a selfish dick by learning to care about her plight.

So, I get that they didn't want to get into the reincarnation theory. They had already gotten enough criticism from the more conservative parts of Korean internet and the mainstream press with the tabloid dialogue, and for the sake of the cast and the crew they went with the two souls separating rather than reincarnation. I personally would have loved reincarnation, as it would have stayed true to GPG and it also would have stayed true to the show's message about gender and agency. But they didn't, and they decided to go with separation, which I didn't hate, but the execution was flawed (contd.)

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Why it was flawed:

As soon as they made Soyong as a completely separate person to Bongwhan and had a big part of Sobong's storyline revolve around the events that lead to her suicide, if they weren't going with the reincarnation ending and not to undermine the message of the show (agency, gender roles) they would have had to separate them. Ep 7 made it clear (although plenty of people interpreted it differently I will agree) that Soyong was still in there, and that she was influencing the person with two people inside of them, Sobong, in ways the speakerphone soul of the partnership, Bongwhan, didn't always like. So if they had just done an ending where Sobong as we knew them remained without any sort of reincarnation, Bongwhan would have been robbing Soyong of her body and the agency shes been helping her claw back. Her suicide attempt would have been the catalyst for the character development of two men and her body would have been used by someone else, even carrying a baby, whilst none of her loved ones have a chance to mourn her. If they were not brave enough to go with reincarnation, that would have been pretty fucked up in a myriad of ways, and would have completely undermined the message of the drama. Also just because she committed suicide or tried to doesn't mean someone else can take over her body and live her life without anyone to say goodbye- again, thats fucked up and really telling of people's opinions on suicide and women.

So, two souls separation could have been executed really well if they had dedicated more time to it- make it clear when Sobong was confronting their dad or apologising to him it's Soyong talking, have Soyong's inner voice overtake Bongwhan's when Cheoljong is flirting with them. Instead they chose to keep it was the "Bongwhan" voice, and elevate the gag by having Bongwhan "beat" Soyong out of her body when she got swoony or horny. Which I get, was fucking hilarious, but didn't really help hone the message that Sobong is a blend of two people influencing each other. The writers made the decision early on to focus on the gags and the politics as that was what kept people tuning in and the plot flowing, but it was at the expense of sticking the landing of what they were trying to say. I totally believe that Sobong's story was "their" story, Soyong and Bongwhan's. Bongwhan cared about her, and vice versa. They helped each other. I really resent the idea that Soyong did nothing and "reaped the rewards" of Sobong- reap what? She almost miscarries, and she and her husband die at 31 and 41 respectively. Their baby still dies young. She still ends up dealing with all the shit Joseon era women have to deal with, the silver lining is that she's with the love of her life, and her family, and they're committed to making things better.

I did think the ending was a little hollow, although I get what they were trying to say. Cheoljong had a connection to her prior to finding out she was a Kim,...

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Cheoljong had a connection to her prior to finding out she was a Kim, and he stamped it out to the best of his ability although some tenderness remained. Hwajin's lie helped spur on this misunderstanding because it prevented him from giving Soyong a chance as a person- if Hwajin hadn't lied they might have cleared it up earlier. Soyong didn't have the guts or the will to stand up to Hwajin before the body share, but as Sobong she did. They pushed Hwajin to do the right thing. At the very end, although Soyong clawed back her agency and managed to free herself, she's still a Joseon era woman. She won't ever be able to find the missing piece of herself, that was Bongwhan, again. Cheoljong also recognises that- I thought that dictionary scene was so lovely and bittersweet because although the show was trying to go "no homo" I fully believe Sobong loved Cheoljong just as much as Soyong without Bongwhan did. Cheoljong realises something is gone and missing, but he decided long ago that he loved his weird wife anyway (people forget that aside from being a lot more reserved everyone thought Soyong was weird prior to the body share anyway, hence the "you were weird 8 years ago but even weirder now, what happened?" comment), That last scene was sweet but a bit hollow, it would have helped the ending stick the landing a lot more if Soyong then switched to banmal to tease him, or have a line where she finally clarifies wtf ramyun means. It would have really wrapped up her character, too.

But they didn't do that, and I just get the impression that whilst they were focused on the politics and the gags that Sobong brought they completely forgot to focus on the body share more- a part of me feels that by dropping hints rather than making it clear they were inviting people to speculate until the end, which we did. But that was at the expense of making it clear Soyong was the other protagonist of this story. I always thought she was, so I didn't feel as cheated as other people that I didn't get the queer reincarnation ending I wanted. But that doesn't mean other people did, and although Korean audiences accepted this doesnt mean other audiences did, and I think that because they wanted to make a show about gender and agency they DID also undermine their own message by giving Bongwhan as Sobong all the air time instead of giving Soyong more breathing room. Because of that she's seen as a bit player in her own story which she shared with Bongwhan, and now people in certain places are characterising her as undeserving and just as bad as Hwajin. I don't think she's undeserving. I think her and Bongwhan got the happy endings they deserved. I just wish both were expanded upon with equal weight to show this was a destination they went on together instead of it being tacked on in a spin off. Na Inwoo (Byeongin) also said they had filmed more scenes about Soyong and Byeongin, and they had cut it. I can't help this was a creative choice they made to...

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..focus on the comedy of it all, but it ended up undermining their end result.

Overall, I really enjoyed this show as the hilarious and heartfelt ride it was. I know a lot of dramas say it was a game changer but I think it really was. They packed in a lot of heavy things in the guise of a fusion sageuk, especially about gender, women's rights, and sexuality. For a country whose mainstream media didn't even print the words misogyny in a newspaper until 2016, this is big. I do wish they could have been braver with the queerness of it all though. I hope that the show is the dam that breaks in terms of more queer content in dramas that is centre stage and not just a side character storyline.

I also think this show would have been nothing without its cast. Even the ones with not a lot to do were really excellent and their chemistry as an ensemble was fantastic. SHS and KJH are stars. I do think a lot of the writing in ep 20 was more to serve their performances, and to provide award nomination material lol. They were absolute forces of nature in this show especially since KJH was playing a man with two personas and SHS was playing a woman, a man, a man and woman blended together, and a man playing a woman dressed as a man. The LAYERS. They deserve to be the biggest stars in the industry, and I can't believe they're both only 30- they're truly just beginning. They made this drama and I really hope they're together again. We talk a lot about iconic on screen couplings and I think this is the beginning of a new one. They're both so supportive of each other and their co-stars too, which is really wonderful. Of all the leading roles for KJH to take after his break I'm glad it was this one because he's one of the only actors that are a match for SHS. I could go on about them for DAYS, haha.

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Yes yes to all of this. You articulated this so fantastically. I wish I could write this myself. Thank you and beautifully said.

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