The only reason I’m writing about this drama is because I’m a big fan of its female lead Kim Yoo-jung.
I first saw Kim Yoo-jung in “Dong Yi” where she was about 9 or 10 years old. Then I saw her in “Hwang Jin Yi” (she was probably 3 or 4 years old), “Iljimae” (probably the same age), “Painter of the Wind” (she was around 5 years old), and in “The Moon That Embraces The Sun” (she was probably 13). I even watched “May Queen” (a non-sageuk) when I found out she was in it.
Kim Yoo-jung has rightfully earned her reputation as Korea’s best child actor. Now at age 17, she’s playing more mature roles. With her talent, she can be Korea’s next international star (after Lee Young-ae).
But how I wish that Kim Yoo-jung would never grow up! How I wish she would always be 9 or 10 years old like when she played the young Dong-yi!
How I made these synopses spoiler-free
I assumed that you will be reading these recaps and watching the videos chronologically.
(1) I narrated the main actions in each episode without revealing the plot’s twists and turns.
(2) At the beginning of each synopsis starting with Episode 2, I placed in a table some of the major twists and turns of the previous episode. But because you have already watched the video of the previous episode, they aren’t spoilers anymore.
(I used this same structure in my recaps of “Six Flying Dragons,” The King’s Doctor,” and “A Jewel in the Palace.”)
Episode 1: “Destiny in the moonlight”
Ra On is an 18-year old girl masquerading as a man and earning a living as a street performer and as a relationship counselor for love-struck men.
She’s on the run from some men to whom she owes a lot of money. She also gets into trouble with the authorities.
To help pay for her debts, Ra On accepts her counselee’s offer to pretend to be him and meet the woman he loves. But the woman turns out to be a man!
Unknown to Ra On, the man is none other than Crown Prince Hyomyeong, who’s trying to protect his love-struck, younger sister. The Crown Prince (aka “Yi Yeong”) may be a troublemaker in the Palace, but he has a soft spot for his sister.
Episode 2: “A road leading to you”
|Episode 1 recap:|
Ra On escapes, leaving Crown Prince Hyomyeong stranded in the deep hole, but she ends up later on as a candidate eunuch. Trying to escape from the Palace, she runs into Crown Prince Hyomyeong (who’s now disguised as a warrior).
She goes to an assignment given her by the Head Eunuch who has begun to dislike her. There, Ra On meets again the young man (“Kim Yoon-sung”) who saved her from the soldiers. Unknown to her, he is the Prime Minister’s grandson.
The Prime Minister is the power behind the distracted and apprehensive King, and he plans to use the Queen’s pregnancy to his advantage.
Ra On also meets a strange warrior, who’s really the Crown Prince’s bodyguard (“Kim Byung-yeon”).
Ra On becomes further confused with the Crown Prince’s real identity — first he was a young master, then a warrior, and then a eunuch. Getting drunk one evening, Ra On gets into trouble again with the Crown Prince.
But later on, she faces a much bigger problem when she gets kidnapped.
With the way Ep. 2 ends, a lot of netizens are saying that right at the very start of Ep. 3, Ra On will finally find out that the young master-warrior-eunuch is actually the Crown Prince. But I don’t think so. Why? Well, watch on YouTube the official trailers/teasers, and you’ll find out why!
I think that the revelation will happen late part of Ep. 3 or even in Ep. 4 or 5. The relationship as friends or confidantes between Ra On and the young master-warrior-eunuch must be developed first.
Funny scenes / video reviews
The videos below do not have English sub, and so, I’ve provided summaries of what the scenes are all about. After clicking the “Play” button, click “Watch on YouTube” for the video to open in a new tab.
1. How Ra On passes the eunuch’s physical exam:
Ra On’s friends pass their physical exam. But she continues to refuse to drop her pants even when ordered by the examiner. Just then, another eunuch comes in, announcing that the Queen has fainted. As the examiner hastily leaves, he drops the seal, and the seal lands on Ra On’s record. The seal lands halfway between “Pass” and “Fail.” The eunuch who takes over doesn’t know if Ra On passed or failed, but he finally says, “Hong Ra On, pass!”
2. The drunken puppy bites the Crown Prince’s finger
While Yi Yeong and Kim Byung-yeon are drinking, Ra On suddenly appears between them. She asks Yi Yeong who he really is — a young master, a warrior, or a eunuch? She then asks Byung-yeon if he’s a ghost who lives in that dark, deserted hall, but Byung-yeon simply glares at her.
Ra On then sees the silver pin on Yi Yeong’s hair, and she reaches up to touch it. But Byung-yeon quickly grabs her hand and orders her not to touch Yi Yeong. Yi Yeong tells him to relax.
Yi Yeon is about to drink some wine, but Ra On snatches the cup from him and drinks it. Not satisfied, she drinks the whole bottle of wine.
As Ra On drunkenly laments her life, she annoys Yi Yeong and Byung-yeon. Byung-yeon agrees with Yi Yeong that a puppy must be trained harshly in order to become obedient. And so, Yi Yeong begins training the puppy (aka Ra On) to follow directions with his finger. But the image of the Head Eunuch appears in Ra On’s mind. She thinks that she’s going to be tossed out of the Palace anyway, and so, she bites down hard on Yi Yeong’s finger.