Scarlet Heart: Ryeo, episode 11

Prince Wook, you are a prime example of many men women have regretfully trusted over the ages and through modern day.

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SPOILERS

Everyone’s true colors come out in this episode.

We all know Empress Yoo is a bitch.  She orchestrated the attempted poisoning of the Crown Prince, along with Princess Yeon-hwa.  We know Empress Yoo wants to remove the Crown Prince to make way for one of her sons to take his place (any of them will do).  There is nothing good that can ever be said about you.

Princess Yeon-hwa, you are confusing.  Just who do you really want to be Crown Prince?  Are you looking at the throne for yourself?

Emperor Taejo, well, I just don’t like him.  I’m sure he was written so no one would like him.  Good job, writers.  He’ll give up anyone to “protect” the throne.  I can’t respect that.

Poor Hae Soo.  She gets accused of trying to assassinate the Crown Prince.  Prince Wook promises he’ll help her.  Hae Soo believes him, even through torture.  Then, Prince Wook turns his back on her.  He’s afraid of the Emperor and turns out to be a little power hungry, too.  He’s willing, even though extremely guilt ridden, to let Hae Soo die.

Oh, Prince Wook, I’m so disappointed in you.  When you literally turned your back to her when she was begging for Court Lady Oh’s life, you broke Hae Soo’s heart.  You were the one person she could trust.  Prince Wook, you are a prime example of many men women have regretfully trusted over the ages and through modern day.  Power is more important than true love.  Fear (and hence selfishness) is more important than love.  I dare say, Prince Wook, you never truly loved Hae Soo and it was cowardly to let her think you did.

Court Lady Oh, you were a true lady.  Your sacrifice was noble.  We all know Hae Soo will never forget your selfless act.  I’m not so sure Taejo will be the same, although he did seem a little upset when his former lover, the mother of his unborn/dead child, was hung.

Prince So is now solid as Hae Soo’s true friend and protector.  He actually made a valiant effort at thwarting Hae Soo’s hanging (before the Royal Order cancelling the hanging was presented).  While the other princes were afraid to physically stand by Hae Soo (even when it rained), Prince So tried to protect her from the rain and even tried to console her when Court Lady Oh was finally executed.

Hae Soo, you finally know who you can depend on: the one who will eventually become Gwangjong.  You thought your life was complicated now.  Just wait.

By the way, Lee Joon Gi is still awesome as Prince So.

Scarlet Heart: Ryeo, episode 10

Lee Joon Gi…he keeps me watching.

requisite warning: SPOILERS

I’m really not sure how I feel about this episode.

Despite three offers to leave the palace, Hae Soo turns two of the offers down and can’t seem to make a decision on the remaining one.

Hae Soo believes she can have a good life with Prince Wook, but can’t give him an answer to his marriage proposal…not that it matters, anyway.  I can’t see Emperor Taejo giving permission for one of his sons to marry a woman who scarred herself so she would not have to marry him.  Let’s not forget, too, that Hae Soo is a court lady.  Court ladies don’t marry princes (I think).

It’s ironic that Hae Soo can give wise instruction to the various princes, but can’t seem to make wise decisions for herself.

Now, as for Prince So…it doesn’t matter he’s going to be Gwangjong (historically, anyway).  Because Lee Joon Gi is playing Prince So, and doing an awesome job of it, we are pulling for Prince So.  We sympathize with him.  We want him to succeed.  The chemistry between Hae Soo and Prince So is what we yearn to see in all kdramas and it’s much more compelling than the chemistry between Hae Soo and Prince Wook.

Lines, blurry or not, are being drawn.  The princess is in cahoots with evil mom to Prince Yo and Prince So…a woman who easily resorts to murder to get what she wants.  Prince Yo does a masterful job at planting the “hate” seed against Prince So in Prince Wook.

Back to Prince So…he wants Hae Soo, and he just may succeed in his efforts.  He forced a kiss on her, but promised not to do that, again.  He takes her on a romantic date/not-date.  He gives her a pretty present.  That all means impending romance in kdrama land.

Prince So also shows his fealty to the Crown Prince, and the action seems to work.  Too bad Prince So got poisoned in the process, drinking the poisoned tea meant for the Crown Prince.

Now, we know that Prince So will live.  He has to.  The whole series centers around him.  The man is destined to become Gwangjong.

Hae Soo, well, she’s going to get into trouble…we know this.  She’s going to be accused of trying to kill the Crown Prince, or at the very least, Prince So.  Again, kdrama land.  The preview for the next episode shows her possibly getting hanged.  We know that can’t happen.  She’s the focus of the story.

Character interactions and futures aside, I’m finding the flow of the story a bit slow.  I’m sure it will pick up, soon.  Maybe it will feel more like a historical drama when swords and arrows start flying.  A brother has to die soon.

What do I come away with after watching episode 10?  I just love watching Lee Joon Gi.  To be honest, he’s the main reason I’m watching.

Scarlet Heart: Ryeo, episode 9

Hae Soo (IU) panics well, causing her to do not the brightest of things, and Prince So (Lee Joon Gi) is a great kisser, even when forcing that kiss on someone.

You know it.  SPOILERS.

Emperor Taejo is liking the 4th prince, more and more.  He tells Prince Yo to go out and check on grain stores around the kingdom, leaving Prince So at the palace and close to the Crown Prince.

Queen “you-suck-what’s-her-face,” aka Prince So and Prince Yo’s mother, takes this opportunity to order Prince So to kill the Crown Prince.  While that may very well happen, it won’t happen because Mommy told him to do so.  Prince So is on the good side, at least for now.

Hae Soo, due to her red filter visions, is scared out of her wits and not doing very bright things. I do like IU’s acting, but this girl she’s playing isn’t keeping herself together well.

Choi Ji Mong, voice of the heavens guy, told her to let things happen as they are supposed to happen.  Of course, Hae Soo doesn’t do that.  She wants to attach herself to Prince Wook (he even says he loves her).  She then tells Prince Wook to stay away from Prince So.  Well, since it’s kdrama land, that means the two princes will come to blows and I bet Prince Wook will die.  She should have kept well enough alone, like she was told to.  She suggests to Prince So (in an aggressive way) to go away from the palace.  Of course, that makes Prince So want her more.

I mean, that was one sexy kiss he forced on Hae Soo.  I’m sure Lee Joon Gi is and will make a lot of women swoon over that kiss.

A cute side story away from the Hae Soo triangle, Prince Eun has to get married and he can’t stand the woman (she’s a “great soldier” for goodness sake).  He’ll get to like her, though. I guarantee it.

What are my final thoughts on this episode?  Hae Soo (IU) panics well, causing her to do not the brightest of things, and Prince So (Lee Joon Gi) is a great kisser, even when forcing that kiss on someone.

Scarlet Heart: Ryeo, episode 8

Typical of kdramas, there is unintended (and some intended) familiarity going on between Prince So and Hae Soo. That’s fun to watch.

You know this, but I’ll say it anyway:

SPOILERS

Back in the day, if a court lady was ordered to stay away from the princes, she stayed away from the princes.  Oh, but not Hae Soo.  She’s lucky she hasn’t been executed for disobeying orders that serious.

Regardless, Hae Soo’s love triangle with Prince Wook and Prince So is getting more intense, and it’s starting to cause a little jealousy between the princes.  Like I said before, this can’t be good.

It was bad planning on the parts of Emperor Taejo and Choi Ji Mong (what is he?  the astronomer adviser to the heavens?) to put the 4th prince (Prince So) in the position of performing  the rain ceremony.  The public is fickle and to make Prince So go through that gauntlet of common (and uneducated) townsfolk was cruel.  I guess people in masks are scary to the common folk.  After the pelting of stones and mud, it’s no wonder Prince So ran away to hide

Of course, Hae Soo has an answer to the mask problem: create another mask by using makeup.  That’s all that makeup is, really.  She did a great job of covering Prince So’s scar, letting him walk the gauntlet again, this time with the common people treating him well.

It was fortunate for all involved that it did rain right after Prince So showed up at the temple.  What would they have done if that hadn’t happened?

Typical of kdramas, there is unintended (and some intended) familiarity going on between Prince So and Hae Soo.  That’s fun to watch.  At first, I didn’t like IU’s acting, but I’m liking it now, especially in her interactions with Lee Joon Gi.  Oh, Lee Joon Gi, you play emotional broody guy well.  I could watch you all day.

Oh, but what is Hae Soo going to do, now?  She’s attached herself to Prince Wook.

And then,  something totally unexpected happens.

Hae Soo has a vision/hallucination/bad daydream involving Prince So.  In her vision/hallucinaton/bad daydream, she sees Prince So in a very red filter.  Of course, rather than think she ate something bad or didn’t get enough sleep the night before, she comes to the wild conclusion that Prince So is Gwangjong, the 4th ruler of Goryeo.  Well, maybe it’s not that much of a wild conclusion as the real Prince So from history did become Gwangjong.

I bet she’s going to try and change history by having Prince So still be Gwangjong but without killing a few of his brothers in the process.

What did I get out of this episode?  Hae Soo doesn’t take orders very well and Lee Joon Gi is as gorgeous as ever.

Oh, and yeah…Prince Yo, you suck.  Well, his mother sucks.  They both suck.

 

Scarlet Heart: Ryeo, episode 7

Hae Soo is falling for Prince Wook and Prince So is falling for Hae Soo. This can’t be good.

SPOILERS

Prince Yo: you suck.

You practically sexually assault your half-sister (relations with half-sisters seem to be a thing in Goryeo royalty as Prince So marries his half-sister in real history), and you set up Prince Eun to devastatingly embarrass Prince So.  That act alone starts to cause stronger rifts among the brothers.

Hae Soo, demoted to court lady for having the audacity to not want to marry the Emperor, is also going to cause rifts among the brothers prince.  They all, including the Crown Prince, like her (well, except for Prince Yo, but like I stated before…he sucks).  I predict some jealousies will grow.

I don’t have to predict that with Prince Wook and Prince So, though.  Jealousy is a given in the triangle they have with Hae Soo.  Why?  It’s a kdrama, that’s why.  And, since this kdrama is set in violent times, you know this could get deadly.

I’m glad Bear Girl was introduced into the story for Prince Eun.  He hates her now, but true to any kdrama plot, he’ll start liking her soon.

Now, back to the triangle.

Hae Soo is beginning to believe she can have a life with Prince Wook.  He’s kind to her and gives her presents and kisses her on the forehead.  That’s quite a setup for a big fall for the prince and I bet the other court ladies are jealous.

Why a big fall?  It’s kdrama land and the bad-but-really-good-guy gets the girl.  Prince So, moody and murderous, has become enamored with Hae Soo, though he hasn’t admitted it to himself, yet.

Here, I have to mention that Lee Joon Gi’s acting is very good in this drama.  It only takes tiny face inflections and body language to set his mood for the viewers, which I’m sure is a challenge behind the mask.  His humored reactions to Hae Soo’s antics were fun to see.

When Prince So took the mask off in front of his brothers and Hae Soo, I felt his devastation and embarrassment.  Hae Soo had already seen the scar, but the reactions from his brothers only solidified his reasons for keeping his face behind a mask.

I’m happy to see more screen time for Lee Joon Gi and I want more.  I’m very sure that wish will be fulfilled.

My last thought about this episode…you already know it.  Prince Yo sucks.

Scarlet Heart: Ryeo, episode 6

SPOILERS.

This episode started out with tears.  That was to be expected so I didn’t expect to tear up myself…but, I did.  The 8th prince and Hae Soo were played very well by Kang Ha Neul and IU in the first scene.  You couldn’t but feel grief.

I thought it was awesome how 6 of the princes rallied to Hae Soo’s “defense” when they found out she was going to be married off.  It’s too bad they couldn’t help once they realized she was going to be married off to the Emperor.

Her method of getting out of that marriage was unexpected, as well, but absolutely perfect for the character.  The Emperor could not marry a woman with scars, so she wounded herself enough to create a scar.  Brilliant.

I think her defiance showed that Hae Soo was quite brave (or foolish, depending on how you look at it) and it provided an example of true bravery for the 4th and 8th princes.

This episode definitely focused on the relationship between Prince Wook (the 8th prince) and Hae Soo, but further hints of the impending relationship between Hae Soo and Prince So (the 4th prince) made themselves quite known.

I really would like to see a relationship between Prince Wook and Hae Soo, even though we know she’s going to end up with Prince So.  The story seems to be pointing to Hae Soo wanting to change history by keeping Prince So from killing his brothers.  In true history, Prince So did become the 4th monarch of Goryeo (Gwangjong), maybe killing brothers in the process.  We’ll see how that goes.  Changing history can result in huge consequences, so I’ve been told.

It will be interesting to watch the love triangle between the 4th and 8th princes and Hae Soo (with weird tangents from the other princes) grow.

I anxiously await the 7th episode.

Scarlet Heart: Ryeo, episode 5

Good bye, Myung Hee. I will miss you.

SPOILERS

This episode made me cry.   The 8th prince’s wife, Myung Hee, dies.  That in itself was heart wrenching, but the way she wanted her husband and Hae Soo to be together so her husband could be happy…a selfless woman to the end, caring only for her husband.

So, now, the relationship between the 8th prince and Hae Soo is out in the open.  In kdrama land, that can’t be good.

On to Prince So (my favorite, of course), history has it he married his half sister.  There was some hint of this in episode 5 when Emperor Taejo and the princess talk about her being married off and then she runs into Prince So.

That’ll complicate things as we all know Hae Soo and Prince So need to get together…’cause Scarlet Heart: Ryeo is a kdrama and that’s what should happen in a kdrama.

About Hae Soo (IU)…the character is maturing, which I am happy to see.  We still see a lot of the anime school girl antics, but her character is more likable, now.

Here’s what I got out of this episode…the 8th prince is careless, letting others outside of his wife know about his feelings for Hae Soo.  Prince So loves to tease Hae Soo.  Prince So’s mother is still a whack job. I’m going to miss Myung Hee.