Jang Ok Jung, Live in Love Episode 10 Recap

Kyaaaa~ Jang Ok Jung, Live in Love is so good that I want to run around asking random people to pinch me in case I’m dreaming. I am actually loving a drama that is qualitatively good, which requires some sort of planetary alignment. Usually I love crap, or there is a good drama that just doesn’t capture my heart. I don’t have a single quibble about this drama from story to acting to directing to music, it’s all coming together like the best executed meal one could hope for. The only oddity is that we’re at episode 10 and still no Jae Hee. What the heck is going on, SBS? I don’t need him but if you promote the heck out of him as the second male lead and integral to Ok Jung’s life before the drama started, then it’s truly weirding me out that he’s been a no-show to the point where Ok Jung is about to become Lee Soon’s consort soon and we still haven’t learned anything about whatever happened to her and Chi Soo from their teenage years until now.

If I watched this drama without any knowledge of its set up, I’ll probably wonder who Chi Soo is and why he is in the drama once he pops up mid-way through the show. I hope the producers really know what they are doing here, because I would hate for his late arrival to suddenly tinker with the great chemistry and flow of JOJ so far. This drama takes all the major events of the historical life of King Sukjong and his women and infuses it with real emotional substance, so we’re seeing the fictional yet wholly plausible incarnations of Lee Soon, In Hyun, Ok Jung, Minister Min, and Jang Hyun. These people have ordained roles in life and some want to preserve the status quo while others want to shake it up. In the midst is Jang Ok Jung, one of the best sageuk heroine depictions I’ve come across in a long time. She’s both a product of her time yet willing to adapt to circumstances and follow her heart. JOJ is her story and the drama and Kim Tae Hee have made the character of Ok Jung complicated and winning.

Episode 10 recap:

Future Queen-to-be In Hyun arrives at the Palace gates in style, while conversely tossed-out Ok Jung sits there worried over comatose Lee Soon. The two women exchange pointed glares and then Ok Jung is literally shoved aside to make room for In Hyun to enter.

Great Dowager Queen Jo meets with Minister Jo and Prince Dongpyung and is furious that Dowager Queen Kim tossed Ok Jung out, especially since Ok Jung came to the Palace under her protection. But right now the Dowager Queen is flying high and has all the power and there is nothing for them to do. Prince Dongpyung says not quite.

Dowager Queen Kim goes to welcome In Hyun as her future daughter-in-law.

Prince Dongpyung walks to the front gate and confronts Dowager Queen Kim for tossing Ok Jung out. He knows the Dowager Queen wants to sully Ok Jung’s presumption of innocence so now he’s officially taken her under his family protection. He will protect the King’s beloved woman in the King’s current incapacitated state.

Prince Dongpyung walks over to Ok Jung, who only has on her mind Lee Soon.

Prince Dongpyung watches Ok Jung crying over Lee Soon and his heart keeps on breaking because of her.

In Hyun is brought to Lee Soon’s bed chamber and proceeds to be his nursemaid.

Ok Jung’s mom and brother are pacing and worried about her. Ok Jung comes home and cries in her mother’s arms. She asks why Ok Jung got kicked out of the Palace and hears the alarming news that Ok Jung fell in love with the King.

Hee Jae confronts Uncle Jang Hyun about sending Ok Jung to the Palace to be thus mistreated. If he knew, he would have taken her to the Qing dynasty. Jang Hyun reveals that Ok Jung and the King are in love and she’s their greatest weapon.

Dowager Queen Kim summons the shaman to inquire about how to cure Lee Soon and wake him from his coma.

Dowager Queen agrees to don simple garments and go to pray in sufferance for her son’s recovery as a way to show the Heavens her genuine heart. Dowager Queen Kim runs into Minister Min on her way to pray. The ministers don’t want her to do it but she insists.

In Hyun watches as the Dowager Queen goes to pray for her son’s recovery. She offers to do it for the Dowager Queen but she says as the King’s mother she needs to do this personally. She asks In Hyun to take good care of Lee Soon.

Dowager Queen Kim means business as she kneels before the temple while cold water is poured over her as she prays.

The royal physician uses acupuncture on Lee Soon, who is currently dreaming about all his childhood encounters with Ok Jung. Lee Soon awakens from his coma and thinks Ok Jung is sitting beside him. He calls her name only to see that it’s In Hyun.

Dowager Queen Kim hears that the King has awakened and rushes to see him. He can tell she seems ill but she says it’s just a cold and nothing serious. She urges Lee Soon to quickly hold the wedding ceremony with In Hyun.

Lee Soon goes to court and meets with his ministers, who are all chanting for him to quickly marry In Hyun and make it official. Lee Soon isn’t ready to agree to make In Hyun his Queen which rankles Minister Min since he knows it’s because of Ok Jung.

Dowager Queen Kim and Great Dowager Queen Jo have a confrontation over Lee Soon’s choice of wife. Dowager Queen Kim is giddy with happiness that Lee Soon has agreed to marry In Hyun, but Great Dowager Queen reminds her that if Lee Soon learns that Ok Jung was tossed out of the Palace, he’s going to be furious with her.

Dowager Queen says he doesn’t about that girl but Great Dowager Queen Jo points out he almost died to save Ok Jung. She tells Dowager Queen that the King’s feelings for Ok Jung are fated and should not be thwarted. After she leaves, Dowager Queen Kim is so incensed that she spits up blood. She orders all the servants to stick to the story that Ok Jung ran away from the Palace and cannot be located.

Lee Soon stands in the courtyard and this time thinks back to all his encounters with teenage Ok Jung and finally makes the connection between the two. He remembers promising her that he would marry her and raise her up from her low class status.

Lee Soon summons his eunuch and finds out that Ok Jung has disappeared from the Palace and he heard she went to the Qing dynasty.

Ok Jung is staying with Prince Dongpyung and he goes to see her. All Ok Jung can think about is Lee Soon and she’s relieved that he’s awakened from his coma. She wants to go see Lee Soon and she knows he doesn’t care about her low status. Prince Dongpyung says the Dowager Queen cares and hates Ok Jung.

Prince Dongpyung tells Ok Jung that the worst fate for a woman is to fall in love with a King. She will never ever hold onto his true heart. He tells her that Lee Soon has agreed to marry In Hyun and is preparing for the wedding ceremony as they speak.

Prince Dongpyung asks Ok Jung to go to the Qing dynasty with him. Ok Jung turns Prince Dongpyung down, she vows to return to Lee Soon’s side. There is nothing she wants in the Qing dynasty. He asks what she wants and she says with all certainty that she only wants Lee Soon.

Lee Soon is getting fitted for his wedding robes for the upcoming ceremony with In Hyun, who is similarly trying on her wedding robes. Ok Jung sits in her room and ponders her path in life.

Ok Jung goes to see Prince Dongpyung and agrees to go with him to the Qing dynasty but in return all she wants is to see Lee Soon one last time. If Lee Soon knows her whereabouts and still doesn’t come see her, then she will give up and go to the Qing dynasty with Prince Dongpyung. He asks with tears in his eyes whether she really doesn’t care one whit about his feelings. How can she not see how he looks at her? Ok Jung looks stunned while Prince Dongpyung tosses the zither aside and storms off.

Heartbroken Prince Dongpyung walks away to go see Lee Soon. He is blocked at the Palace gates under orders from Dowager Queen Kim, but he grabs a sword and barges in to see Lee Soon.

Lee Soon is happy to see Prince Dongpyung, who starts off by asking if Lee Soon is willing to give up his throne to be with the woman he loves, when before he said all woman around him can be used and must be of use. Lee Soon says that woman is the exception, and his royal throne he will treat it like it never existed in his life before if he can be with her.

Prince Dongpyung then reveals that Ok Jung is staying at his Palace after being kicked out of the Palace.

Lee Soon strips off his wedding robes and rides out of the Palace with Hyun Moo to go find Ok Jung. Prince Dongpyung sits in Lee Soon’s chambers staring at the discarded robes, saying to himself that he has used his own hands to send Ok Jung somewhere he can never protect her anymore. Sobs, poor baby.

Dowager Queen Kim learns that Lee Soon has taken off and the wedding ceremony cannot take place now, which is a grave insult to Minister Min and In Hyun. She falls ill again while In Hyun is totally crushed. Minister Min vows that he will get Lee Soon back for this grave insult.

Lee Soon rushes to Prince Dongpyung’s residence and walks in to see Ok Jung standing there waiting for them. They tenderly stare at each other.

Apparently the King works fast, or else a near brush with death has made him take advantage when allowed, because Lee Soon and Ok Jung are in bed preparing to consummate their relationship.

Lee Soon unbraids Ok Jung’s hair and tenderly pulls her in for a kiss before pressing her down on the mattress. Elsewhere In Hyun is dressed like a Queen and crying at the humiliation and sadness that her future husband left her on their wedding day to go find another woman.

Ok Jung and Lee Soon are wearing bed clothes in bed as he fixes her hair into that of a married woman. Lee Soon tells Ok Jung that she is so beautiful how can he not think of her constantly. He pulls her in for a back hug. He wants to build her a side residence in the Palace where they can be happy together and make lots of babies like rabbit. LOL.

He wants to make her his Consort but she doesn’t want it since it will place him in a difficult position. All she wants is to be by his side. He tells her that he promised her when they were kids to marry her. Ok Jung doesn’t remember.

Hyun Moo suddenly calls from outside the door saying that the Dowager Queen is very ill and Lee Soon needs to quickly return to the Palace.

Minister Min is at the gisaeng house and hears about Lee Soon ditching In Hyun on their wedding day and rushing to find Ok Jung. He is furious and decides Ok Jung must be eliminated.

A gisaeng in Jang Hyun’s pocket hears this and later goes to report to Jang Hyun that Minister Min is planning to off Ok Jung.

Lee Soon returns to the Palace and goes to see his mom. He informs her that he loves Jang Ok Jung and she is never to harm her. Dowager Queen Kim is so angry she gets even sicker. That wench is clearly sent to seduce the King and is from the Noron faction. She vows to never let Ok Jung step one foot in the Palace while she is still alive.

A woman purporting to have served Queen In Kyung comes by to pick Ok Jung up to return to the Palace. She goes with this woman having remembered Lee Soon’s promise to come pick her up soon.

Ok Jung is taken to a remote village shack where Minister Min and his men in black are waiting for her. He notes that she looks a lot like Jang Hyun’s dead daughter Hong Joo. He derides her for daring to use her wiles to seduce a King and overreaching. Ok Jung doesn’t back down and says she is already the King’s woman, and even a low class person like her as the right to love.

Minister Min says only Queen In Hyun is the King’s woman, not someone as low class as she is. He offers her one chance to live if she leaves for the Qing dynasty now, otherwise he will burn her alive. Ok Jung refuses since she made a promise with the King. Ok Jung warns Minister Min that the King will not allow him to get away with this. Minister Min orders Ok Jung tied to a pole and the hut set on fire.

Minister Min is carried away as Ok Jung is being burned alive. Thankfully Jang Hyun’s minion was keeping an eye on Ok Jung. She passes out in the fire but has flashbacks to her teenage meeting with Lee Soon, finally remembering their childhood promise. Ok Jung is rescued by Jang Hyun’s minions.

Prince Dongpyung discovers Ok Jung is missing and supposed a court lady came to take her away. He rushes to the Palace to tell Lee Soon, while Minister Jo also goes to inform Great Dowager Queen Jo.

Lee Soon thinks his mom did it and rushes off to confront her in her sickbed. In Hyun is there taking care of Dowager Queen Kim and hears Lee Soon’s warning that Ok Jung is never ever to be harmed. He loves Jang Ok Jung and even the Dowager Queen cannot harm a hair on her head.

In Hyun hears this and is totally shaken. Dowager Queen Kim is so angry she bursts into tears that her son could talk to her thusly over a low class woman.

Lee Soon orders his guards to go search for Ok Jung, he doesn’t care if they turn Hanyang upside down, they need to find her.

In Hyun goes to talk with Lee Soon, chiding him for being an unfilial to his mother over a woman. Lee Soon scoffs that only the Queen can deal with back Palace matters and she is not yet his Queen.

In Hyun goes back to Dowager Queen Kim who urges her to quickly marry Lee Soon. She promises Dowager Queen Kim that she will get Lee Soon to quickly agree to the marriage and she will endure him keeping other women by his side The Queen doesn’t want her to risk bringing Ok Jung into the Palace but In Hyun says passion and looks will all disappear with time. She is confident she will be the victor in the end.

In Hyun goes to talk with Lee Soon about Ok Jung. Lee Soon calmly tells her that Ok Jung is the person that even if he has to turn Hanyang upside down he will find her and protect her. Even knowing how much he loves Ok Jung, In Hyun still wants to become his Queen? In Hyun calmly says that she will put down her pride and accept any woman he wants to have, as long as he makes her his Queen.

She offers him a deal – if he makes her his Queen, she will pave the way for him to bring Ok Jung back to the Palace without any one complaining or making it difficult for him. She will be his Queen, and in return she will bring him the woman he loves.

In Hyun is ready to leave her family home to enter the Palace officially as the Queen. She exchanges a look with her dad as she’s sent off by all the family retainers.

Jang Hyun sits at home and discusses with Hee Jae about the next steps.

Lee Soon and In Hyun hold their royal wedding in front of happy Dowager Queen Kim and poker-faced Minister Min.

Ok Jung finally awakens after her fiery ordeal. She goes to stand under the same tree that Lee Soon once made a promise to meet her under but never showed up.

Jang Hyun walks up to her and goads her by revealing that Lee Soon is currently holding a royal wedding to marry Minister Min’s daughter In Hyun. He asks if she now knows what it feels like to want something but not be able to have it? Ok Jung’s controls her tears and frustration and says with certainty to her uncle Jang Hyun that she want to align with him now. She will achieve her uncle’s dream of becoming the father-in-law to the King, but in return he will make it so she can become the King’s woman.

She will make herself so powerful and strong that no one can never harm her again. For everyone who told her that she was a lowly person who could not live the life she wants or love the man she wants, she will show them that she can. For that to happen, she vows to return to the Palace and she wants Jang Hyun to help her. Pissed off Ok Jung, I love it!

Thoughts of Mine:

I am having so much fun watching JOJ, which isn’t something one normally can say about watching sageuks. Usually it toddles between tedium and tension, with lots of important things happening but hardly any joie de vivre. I find JOJ entertaining even in the midst of so much plotting and push-and-pull. This story makes me worried not about how it’ll all end (rocks fall down, anyone?) but instead plops me fair and square in the right now. Poor Prince Dongpyung (that ought to be his full name from now on) does the honorable thing and reunites Ok Jung and Lee Soon after ascertaining that they are really in love with each other. It doesn’t make his warning to Ok Jung any less true, but if she wants to pick the King despite knowing the odds are high she’ll end up heartbroken or six-feet-under, then by golly she should be allowed to do so. Ok Jung really is fearless once she makes up her mind, announcing to everyone who asks that she’s the King’s woman and that’s that. Lee Soon is also rising up to the challenge and expertly balancing reality and his dream romance, exchanging In Hyun as Queen for Ok Jung as Consort. He can have it all, so why not go for it. He’s going to need In Hyun to keep the Sorons at bay, and hopefully In Hyun will turn out to be a Queen who puts the nation first over either her husband’s needs or her father’s will.

I loved how Lee Soon finally made the connection between teenage Ok Jung and adult Ok Jung, in his subconscious memory and without a lot of fanfare. I also appreciated that the drama didn’t dwell on them falling in love because of residual teenage attraction, which was fleeting and forgettable, but it’s their adult journey together that has paved the way for me to root for their love. I am thrilled at seeing In Hyun obtain the position of Queen by strategic insight rather than underhanded dealing, because so far she’s been truly a worthy opponent for Ok Jung not to mention having an edge at being a capable future Queen. The drama is setting them up to be a redux of the power struggle between the two Dowager Queens, except this time both are married to the same man. Will In Hyun find herself falling in love with Lee Soon down the road, or will it purely be a political winner-takes-all game for her. I’m actually not looking forward to the arrival of Dong Yi/Choi Sukbin at all, mostly because her character in history never appealed to me and I’m so taken with the current dynamic that throwing another woman competitor in the mix might take away from the compelling battle between Ok Jung and In Hyun. This drama isn’t just about the OTP getting together and having romantic moments (which are all good), its about how a love story that cannot be is given an chance to come true even if it cannot have an ultimate happy ending.


Jang Ok Jung, Live in Love Episode 10 Recap — 74 Comments

    I watched the show without subtitles, and strangely, I understood stuff without knowing Korean. That’s how good these actors are!
    And I totally agree on the the fact that childhood romance is overrated! I think this is how Moon embracing the Sun should have portrayed it. Not having the King in love with the idea that Shaman Yeon Woo is the childhood love Yeon Woo, but actually have him fall in love with her without knowing who she was. Then, much later along the story, he would have found out who she is.
    Sometimes writers make the childhood romance WAY too bloated, it almost seems comical. Like in GU Family book – the whole thing about Kang Chi protecting Yeo Wool from a dog, I thought was completely stupid and doesnt add anything to the story. Here, Lee Soon actually made a promise to Ok Jung when they were young to elevate her class. That partially shaped the way she started to perceive things later. He broke his promise, which is why she was very reluctant to start a relationship with him as an adult. Only after he proved multiple times that he loved her, did she actually take the leap of fate to trust him.
    I hope she finds out that he married In Hyun for her sake, so that she could be accepted as his consort. Without the Queen’s permission, I believe he cannot officially marry her. She would only be a “Special Lady.”
    Anyways, Everything makes sense! Decisions are made because of past experiences of the characters, not some random whim of the writer having the characters do unexplained things. When you have well developed characters who have clear goals, the story writes itself effortlessly and doesn’t impose things that make no sense. Which is why this show is so GODDAMN GOOD!!!
    Thanks again, koala, for the awesome recaps! <3

  2. lol, I’m just glad I watched the bed scene over 10 times because now my heart has calmed down(ish).
    I honestly can’t believe they really did consummate their relationship even before she became his concubine. Isn’t that scandalous in joseon era? It seems like the king’s version of taking it “slow” is way faster even for your modern k-drama relationship. lol Fastest sageuk sex between OTP evar. not complaining though. ahem.
    Right now, i really like that In Hyun isn’t outright evil the way people expect her to be, cast opposite the innocent portrayal of Ok Jang. She’s honorable (even if at times she turns a blind eye to her father’s sins), and truly wants to be Mother of the Nation. For some reason, i am totally fine with her being Consort while OK Jang is Concubine. As the bed scene showed us, Lee Soon can have Ok Jang by his side behind closed doors to provide emotional stability, while In Hyun (although doomed to be lonely for the rest of her life), will help aid the king in ruling joseon.
    I am also giddy for some potential femme fatale-ness that are slowly being drawn out of Ok Jang. I guess all the gal needed was a really sexy King as a reason to start being badass. Now she has something else to fight for. I like this development, which is why i didn’t her to be outright evil from the beginning, as alot of people wanted and were complaining about. Isn’t it alot more juicy to have a candy esque girl turn bad on us? It makes for alot more dynamic in Ok Jang as a character.
    I really can’t believe we’re at episode 10 either — so much as happened, it makes me wonder where we’re gonna be at the end, im predicting for sure that we will see Ok Jang Pregnant and give birth to future king.
    I also really don’t know how they’re going to introduce Choi sukbin / Chi soo, but right now, i’m just enjoying all the OTP goodness.. THANKS KOALA!

    • Not scandalous because he is the king. He can have any girl in the palace technically. Not saying he should. I would be happy if its JOJ+LS forevers <3

  3. Really Suk bin doesn’t appeal to you? maybe it is because little is known about her due to her birth status. But Isn’t she one of the only servants whom became a noble consort?

  4. I am still surprised at how much I like In Hyun. At the beginning I was expecting the drama to portray her as a bit of a villain but they might not want to tarnish her historically clean image. I like how she got what she wanted in the end by offering to cement his own power as King. One thing I don’t really understand is why she wanted to be Queen so badly – did she fall for our suave, dashing king, or did she want the position to help her father or is it just to fulfil her lifelong dream? That was never really clear to me. She seemed a bit jealous seeing Sukjong treat In Kyung gently, yes, but she hardly swooned. Not as much as I did anyway.

    • Isn’t HSY doing a fantastic job?

      It’s probably because this was what she raised to be all her life and there’s nothing else out there that is more powerful than being the Mother of the Nation. We are looking back at 17th/early 18th century Jeoson where the class system was so strong, nobles etc. So being the Queen makes her at the top of the pyramid.

      I don’t hate or blame IH at all for wanting this. And I credit HSY for making me sympathise with IH.

      This drama is driving me nuts!

      • Yep, she is definitely holding her own as In Hyun! I actually feel sorry for In Hyun as every time the King looks at her, he has a look of disgust in his eyes. And she has to marry this guy, eeeps. I’m looking forward to the ladies duking it out in the palace. I presume that with In Hyun as Queen now Dong Yi will make her appearance as well.

        I’m not that bothered that Chi Soo’s entrance has been delayed (although I expected him to be the one to have saved Ok Jung from the burning hut and not a random minion of Jang Hyun). What I am kind of surprised is that Dongpyung is in cahoots with the Great Queen Dowager. I always thought his bromance with the King was due to him being politically neutral. Which can’t be when he’s meeting up with the Great Queen Dowager and discussing about Ok Jung.

    • So I’m interested in psychological effects of judging or lack of judgments on the history book. “Greed of 2 different classes people” One VIRTUOUS and another EVIL to the same greed. That what I love about this drama, we’re not known the fact of that period. if anyone judges based on sociological knowledge, not values, but history book’s tainting their judgement based on subjective, not objective criteria. Judgements made using subjective criteria will be wrong more often than empirical data. In this case, the judgements are bad. Bad for the person making them, as they are wrong about them more often, and wrong for the people receiving them, as they are misjudged, the definition of “judgement” to mean “predictions based upon summarized data”. I don’t think it is possible to make time-sensitive predictions without judging. The human brain is capable of quite a lot, but predicting outcomes based on _all_ available data is not one. The mind must summarize data in order to process it.

      “Greed” is the inordinate desire to possess wealth, power, or objects of abstract value with the intention to keep it for one’s self, far beyond the dictates of basic survival and comfort. It is applied to a markedly high desire for and pursuit of wealth, status, and power.
      As a secular psychological concept, greed is, similarly, an inordinate desire to acquire or possess more than one needs. It is typically used to criticize those who seek excessive material wealth, although it may apply to the need to feel more excessively moral, social, or otherwise better than someone else.

    • I don’t think a capable and intelligent woman in those days had a lot of career options. Also, being from a high class, pretty much the creme de la creme of the yangban class, her options were even more limited. She couldn’t become a nurse, she couldn’t take government exams and become a scholar, she couldn’t really do anything – unless she was Queen. Then, and especially if she had a son, she would have influence over the country and how it’s run. It’s rather all or nothing for her.

  5. whoaaaaaaa!!! thank you madam Koala for this… JOJ has become my drama crack these days… It really hurt so good… ^^ why can’t Monday come a little bit faster??? hehehe ^^

  6. Please drama… Please stay in grey area where the main leads nothing is truly good or truly bad…… So far they are doing a good job…. Please… Don’t make ok jung become a totally evil character… Just a human being who are exhausted by the world who treat her like crap and only want the recognition as a human being.. I wonder if she will be potrayed like yam jun in war of flower…. Another my fav anti heroines char. I like antiheroine char who potrayed as morally ambigious char, yes. they are scheming. But we can still can makes sense behind their action.. Like jae hee in nice guy. They are always looks fascinating to watch.
    I really hope the transformation won’t ruin the flow of the awsome romance they have been built.

  7. Thanks for a very fast recap Koala. You are really awesome.
    I watched the episode last night without the english sub and i was totally into it. This drama is so good, that it changed my habbit. Before i hate mondays.. but now i look forward to mondays and tuesdays..
    Ahhhh, what have you done to me JOJ!!!

  8. What on earth is happening to me? After years of lurking on Kdrama sites, JOJ has finally motivated me to participate or else I will go nuts.

    Thank you so much Miss Koala for saying everything that is on my mind about this show and more. None of my friends watch the show so what you write really speaks to me.

    I’ve seen my fair share of dramas and JOJ is one of the most well written, spectacularly directed and well acted dramas I’ve ever encountered. I can barely a recall a drama that has so captivated me and swept me away with its depth of character development and compelling storyline. You can see the labor of love put into this show- anywhere from the incredible costumes to the subtle facial expressions the actors use to convey their emotions. Everything fits together and is glued by excellent story and pacing. Usually, I have this bad habit of skipping scenes I find boring or to be filler. There has not been one moment in JOJ when I felt like that. Instead, I watch, re-watch and then read your recaps to live every moment of the show again and again. I have become addicted to JOJ, and I guess that makes you one of my enablers. I am so grateful to you for that.

    The magnetic chemistry in this show is so overwhelming. Even though I’m also terrified that the introduction of Chi Soo and Choi Sukbin will ruin some of the dynamics between the characters (how is it possible not to at this point?? Unless through some voodoo magic…), the writer and producers have done a spectacular job thus far and I am sure they will take us by the hand and lead us through it. I am open to little shake-ups here and there as long as they stick to essence of each character. There has been well thought out surprises in the show, so I don’t dare to anticipate what might happen. Oh, but I definitely anticipate buying more Kleenex to get me through the next couple of weeks. Damn it, show!!

  9. Thank you for the fast recap Ms. Koala, love it! Sigh, I really want a happy ending, is it asking too much? 🙁

  10. I have a serious palpitation and heart impulse raising for that make out scene. How can be this scene got me so much…It’s too beautiful and so subtle…I can’t even. I need oxygen.

  11. It seems you can guarantee a lot of skinship between otp… I. Don’t know… It seems thid director really dare to have a lot of skinship between the so called otp…. Take a look at my girlfriend is a gumiho.. There is a looot skinship going there lol

  12. Never hope that you post the recap so early, but that dont stop me to visit your blog every I wake up in the morning. and this is it….

  13. thanks so much koala sis for the awesome and superfast recaps! i love your insights about the OTP and how they are given a chance in their love and their story is not at all the focus but is as important as all the aspects in this drama. me too does not really see the need to throw in Choi Sukbin in the game but seeing how almost seamlessly the writer is weaving her story then i expect her entrance to be such. the same is true with Chi Soo. i find the story of our OTP good enough and have upped the stakes without the need for another male lead. it wouldn’t hurt tho if that would make the story more interesting.

      • Yeah, I sometimes catch myself rooting for him, even though I know he is up to no good 🙂

      • I give the actor (Sung Dong Il) alot of credit for that because he adds alot of depth to that character from expression alone. I’m surprised too, considering i’ve only seen most of him in comedy/family roles so him playing a villain in sageuk is different. His expressions gives me goosebumps, moreso than our other villains (in hyuns daddio)

  14. I just love love love this drama!! I go all giddy, breathless and all mushed and soft whenever I’m watching JOJ and LS interact. Regardless of whether the interaction is of a lovey-dovey/steamy nature or not! This is the bestest bestest drama I’ve ever watch so far and I pray and hope it will remain that way until the last episode.

    Anyway, whilst we’re on the topic of Ep 10, can i just say that it is just out of this world!! The only part that does not sit too right (But boy am i NOT complaining) is how abrupt the consummation was. I mean the two have held back all this while, why the sudden urge? I’m not saying it is impossible (hell I’m sure there is loads of hidden pent-up urges to rip each others clothes off every time their eyes meet! hee) but they could at least say a word or two to each other before hitting the mattress! I mean they were meeting for the first time after she thought he could have died saving her and he thought she’s gone for good somewhere in Qing. Surely they can talk about that first right… Maybe bring in some justification for the (I would believe) rather daring and probably socially unacceptable act during those ancient days of guy and gal making out before marriage let alone King and Slave Consummating!! Especially from JOJ’s perspective since she’s the lady and I’d imagine in conservative olden society what she did was a BIG NO-NO! I’m not saying I don’t want it to happen, but maybe with a bit of justification like err… oh! Maybe she could have thought to herself just before the deed “this man almost gave up his life to save me, surely I can give him mah bardeh (‘body’)….” LOLZ!! Cheesy or corny?

    Ok i know you guys are thinking Thanks goodness I’m not a Kdrama producer. Anyways, I still love love love the show!! Keep it up you’all!!

    • JOJ is already a court lady at the moment. And as we know, all court ladies are King’ women and he can have them anytime if he wants. So I think they both and other people in that era regard this consummation as normal.

  15. Oh boy!! This drama is doing all sorts of things to my heart. From the get-go, before it started airing, I knew this was the one out of the three that I would be checking out first. I never once thought it would actually be good before it aired. Only after the extended preview, it really peaked my interest. Now that we are here at ep 10 – and wow.

    OTP owns my heart for now. Sigh… I have 10 tissue boxes. it should be enough.

  16. I love that Ok Jung finally stands up and says out loud what she wants, that she only wants LS.
    Pissed off Ok Jung me likey! In this episode we begin to see the born of femme fatale. We already knew she has a strong determination and big ambition. Now the whole thing is shaping up and I can’t wait to see her being all badass. Of course, I’m happy that In Hyun seems as badass as Ok Jung. Bring it on, women! And my oh my the consummation scene has me goosebumps all over my body. It’s just insanely beautiful and I can totally feel their chemistry oozing out the screen!

    • Yeah! @ Seoorung 서오릉 (meaning 5 western tombs) a UNESCO World Heritage site just outside of Seoul in Gyeonggi-do where some of the Joseon Kings and Queens and concubines are buried. Lady Choi’s tomb, (Dong Yi) is not here. But King Sukjong, Queen Inhyeon, and Jang Hee Bin’s tombs.
      Jang Hee Bin tomb is that behind the tomb is a large rock and through the rock a pine tree has broken through it to grow. There is speculation that this reveals that her ki (energy) was and still is very strong. (the grave was moved here in 1969) Some Korean websites such as this one report that because Jang Hee Bin was such a strong woman there is a belief that if young single women who want a boyfriend go and pay a tribute to Jang Hee Bin at her tomb then they will soon find love. I don’t know if this really works but I suppose it’s worth a try.
      LOL! Shall we go there??????

  17. omoooo!!! thnk u!!! u r thee GREATEST!!!! I just love how this drama unfolds and at the perfect pace!!! @ this point Idk y there is even choi sukbin!!! lets just end it with JOJ having her baby boy!! lol!!!!! can’t wait for next week!!!! 🙂

  18. Thanks for the fast recap Ms K, I have the exact same worry….the future entrance of second male lead and choi sukbin feel like will ruin the current magnificent flow and chemistry of this drama…..the characters showing now are well written to be able to sustain story telling until EP10, right? * worries *

    P.S. PC viewers are missing out some great stuff here.

  19. awesome recap! I wasn’t expecting it today but tomorrow and damn you’re really good. JOJ –I’m lovin’ it.

  20. I too Love Love you Ms Koala^-*:)) m very grateful to you for making my Mon n Tue so interesting by reading your superfast n AWESOME!!! Recap*-*. I enjoyed tis drama sooo much n JOJ is my bestest m loving it every time when I watched ok jung n lee soon together*-* wat a great chemistry! ! My best regards to you n thanks again 4 yr recap:)))

  21. I am so in love with this drama!!! 😀 😀 😀 It’s hitting all the right notes. THANKS for the recaps, Koala. These and the previews tide me over until I can watch the subbed episodes each week.

  22. Thank you for the super fast recap Koala! You must have stayed up to finish, not that I can blame you since this episode was simply mindblowing!

    I love the characters, all of them, from the scheming uncle, annoying DQ, QIH, all of them and this drama is making me nuts.

    Oh drama, bring it on!Surprise me!

  23. wuahhh
    i love them all
    Love th progress of this drama…
    But i wonder is it enough for 24 episode? and Chi Soo join yet….
    thank you koala

  24. koala has a very good recap. You were able to see the depth of this drama. I am not a fan of historical dramas of Korea but this JOJ has changed my perception. Kudos to the men and women behind this drama for coming with this brilliant story that will hook the audience. The actors were squeezed to bring out their best giving justice to the story. This is really something to watch for.

  25. DP-gun feels more like the 2nd male lead than CS-orabeoni for now. We’re not even half way thru the 24 episodes and the OTP has already consummated their love. I think this marks the end of the drama’s first arc. Next couple of episodes shd show OJ being made the concubine (with uncle’s help & queen IH’s “support”), which marks the start of the drama’s second arc, with the introduction of new characters like CS-orabeoni and CSB at some point to shake things up (it’s not a drama if everyday is blissfull and lovey-dovey palace living right… tho that’s what we shippers want… but a good drama is one that takes viewers thru the emotional roller coaster with the OTP that hurts so good). One thing that really bugs me is, based on the complete character description, it looks like DP-gun will be the one tasked to deliver the poison to OJ under the King’s command, which probably means she won’t get to die in the King’s arms like queen IK for which she was so envious about… sigh… and if the drama is true to the novel’s last 2 sentences, the King will forever be so lonely with no one to go to for true comfort and genuine consolation anymore because OJ is no more of this world… double sigh…

  26. Could somebody tell me if the king loved JOJ so much, why then he took Dong Yi as another concubine ? Was it because the king is just a man who can’t resist the temptation of women or was it another political reason behind it? Thanks !

    • Maybe he was tired of the political factions. The queen has her faction, JOJ has her faction, maybe he wanted someone who didn’t have backing?

  27. Awesome!! Absolutely awesome! Thank u so much for the recaps.
    U’r right. I love pissed off Ok Jung too. She looked so bad assed and determined when she made her decision to team up with Jang Hyun. KTH is doing a very convincing portrayal. And Jang Hyun….i really love Sung Dong Il. The way JH’s face lit up when he realised the game is on.
    Truthfully, i dread the appearance of Dong Yi. I feel that she will deal a big blow to LS and OJ’s relationship unless LS married DY just to spite In Hyun. I hope the writers vome up with a good explanation.
    Oh….and i love ur screencap of the Dowager and Great Dowager; scream-fest. Epicdom. XD

  28. I still don’t understand how Jang Hyun will be father-in-law to the king if Ok Jung is the king’s consort. How does that work? Is it a cultural thing where an uncle or family head is like a father and so becomes a father-in-law?

    • In my culture, when a girl doesn’t have a father anymore, her older uncle will automatically become the “representative” of her father. Anyways, as far as I remember, OJ’s father on episode 2 asked Jang Hyun to keep OJ in his family so that she wouldn’t live in suffer. I presume, it means he wants Jang Hyun to take OJ as his “step daughter”.

      • Adopted daughter, not step-daughter. 🙂 Step would be a wife’s child from another man.

        Thank you so much for answering me. Okay, I see now.

  29. here is my thought about the bed scene…

    a big irony that Inhyun was dressed as a Queen in a wonsam that was handmade by Okjung. While Okjung stole away her supposed to be husband on their wedding night. it’s like Okjung tried to say this to Inhyun: “you can have all the glory of being the legal wife, but your man’s heart belongs to me.”

    • It’s not wedding night. It’s still the ritual wedding messenger where the king comes to the soon-to-be bride’s house to give his message that she’s selected as his queen.

  30. I wonder if the fact that Lee Soon’s mother made herself mortally ill saying a difficult prayer for his health and will affect how he views InHyun later? I imagine he would see InHyun, his mother’s favorite, with more kindness later, since no matter what their conflicts in life, people tend to remember departed parents with affection.

  31. you are amazing!
    thank you!!!!!
    I LOVE JOJ, i cannot stop praising this drama kekeke.
    their bed scene as off the off, kekke King Suk Jong definitely took the lead in that, I am also very happy to see that they’re in love with each other as adults and not because “we liked each other then young” and I am glad they’ve both realized it as well.
    This drama is really sad, because everything is coming into place in history and with JOJ finally taking the intiative to walk towards Suk Jong for the first time…
    this OTP will be the end for me~

  32. Everything is so interesting for me.. I feel sad for the King not having his power at all… and yes the other question is where is Jae Hee?? all i see is his name and picture in the cast credentials but in the movie??? Prince Dongpyung has my full sympathy

  33. Thank you so much Koala we have the same thing in mind!! :)) I also read all the comments above. Hihihi. I agree with fangirl98 IT’S HITTING ALL THE RIGHT NOTES!! hehe I’m going crazy over this drama. I love the characters. Especially Lee Soon (his killer smile & looks) & Ok Jung (very beautiful).. Can’t wait until Monday.. ♥ ♥ ♥

  34. Thanks for the recaps!
    I really enjoyed the last two eps watching the chess pieces moved about the board in a logical manner. As you said, for a saguek, this one is surprisingly NOT boring.

    I do wonder why they keep pointing out the obvious as far as concubines. I guess they are trying to make palatable to the modern audience? The fact is that concubines were accepted without fanfare. All the maids are the King’s women. Official titles were set in place just for them. The power struggle, I suppose, is what sets JOJ apart from any young girl in the palace who has seen the King’s pj’s. Still…
    Can’t wait to see what gets stirred up next!

  35. I’m usually a sucker for romantic lovey-dovey scenes, but LS and JOJ do nothing for me. I don’t feel emotionally attached nor do I specifically root for them. So far, I am much more interested in seeing how Inhyun and Lee Soon would work.

    Both Lee Soon and JOJ were annoying the heck out of me during eps 9 and 10. Lee Soon for being so obsessed with JOJ (the part when he ditched the Royal wedding, ran off to have sex with her.. indeed a chickflick novel) and JOJ for being so mary-sue. But then BAM, the ending of episode 10, has totally pulled me back into the story. JOJ is finally going to turn into a bitch! The show is finally beginning.

    • It’s not wedding night. It’s still the ritual wedding messenger where the king comes to the soon-to-be bride’s house to give his message that she’s selected as his queen.

  36. Prince Dongpyeong is Ok Jung’s hero in this episode by giving her the royal protection so she can come back to the palace when the king calls her. He abandons his own feeling for Ok Jung. And about their first night, somehow this reminds me of Princess Man. In Princess Man, after the guy escaped from the death and met her, the emotion was so overwhelmed and they slept together. I think this also applies to Lee Soon with situation that’s almost similar, near brush with death.

  37. Hi Ockoala,

    Perhaps this is a dull question. Is this drama’s story going to keep to the history or is it going to be a pure fiction? I like Ok Jung here a lot that I am not sure if I want to see her turn into what was written in the history.

  38. As for Dong Yi / Choi Suk Bin, I really don’t think LS will truly love her. Earlier in the series and in this episode, he said that all women are political tools and Ok Jung is the only exception. He’s completely in love with her, and no other girl has ever even come close to making him feel that way. I have faith that he’ll be using CSB for some sort of political gain or to distract the ministers from JOJ.

  39. Omg! This drama is not making me sleep. This is all I think about. This is my drama crack! I’m going mental. I’ve literally watched each and every episode 5 friggin’ times!!! It’s ridiculous. Where is the preview for episode 11?!?!?! Pls tell me. I am so anxious already! Btw thanks koala for the recaps. You’re helping me with my addiction… Maybe feeding… It’s all good

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