I’m surprised the full character descriptions for Goddess of Fire available at DC and Baidu never got translated into English considering its got a sprawling cast so surely a dedicated fan group of one of the leads could do the task. For some reason I was super excited about GoF but somehow missed reading the character descriptions before the drama aired. Then the drama stunk to high Heaven with its premiere, utterly hack directing coupled with a script written by kids in preschool using chubby crayons, I was so ready to write this one off. But my love of Moon Geun Young and Kim Bum compelled me to check back in when the adults showed up and all it took was one smoldery glance from Bummie as adult Kim Tae Do and I almost melted. And when Tae Do and Jung Yi reunited as adults, I was officially a goner. Hook, link, and sinker. Geun Young’s chemistry with Bummie is beyond what I had hoped for. It’s soooooo electric, yet warm and tender. Reminds me of what she shared effortlessly with Jang Geun Seok in Mary Stayed Out All Night, and reaffirms for me that she really works better with guys closer to her own age. Not to say she had bad chemistry with older guys, only that I personally prefer her with equally winsome leading men. An exception was the older Chun Jung Myung in Cinderella Unni since those two drank from the same fountain of youth and PIE still looks not a day over 22. Back to GoF, since I mentioned the character descriptions of the leads gave away the ending, I don’t want to be a tease and leave y’all hanging. Below I’ve translated the descriptions for Jung Yi, Gwanghaegun, and Tae Do. Lee Sang Yoon‘s Gwanghaegun is without a doubt the first male lead, and I hope he gets lots and lots of screen time to make up for not getting the girl. But right now the audience chatter over at DC and Baidu appears heavily swayed to Tae Do and I wonder if the writer might adjust the latter part of her story to amp up the love triangle even more so it doesn’t seem like Jung Yi gives up on her one true love Gwanghaegun and picks Tae Do because he’s the only one left or something like that. Beyond Tae Do’s character so far being the most endearing, his character description also tugged at all my heartstrings. It’s high time the silent protector oppa types that always get shafted finally gets rewarded with the love of his life for all the sacrifice and love he put in.
Yoo Jung Yi
A skilled potter with an artistic soul and an unsurpassed gift for this craft. She is a tomboy who is not afraid of confrontation and has a quick thinking mind. She was born in a kiln with natural talent for ceramics. She wanted to become a blacksmith more than a potter, but her fate thought otherwise. Her ability to make a ceramic after one look is recognized by King Seungjo, and it isn’t until after her adopted father dies that she vows to become the top potter in all of Joseon and trains to enter the Palace pottery department. She uses her passion and talent to overcome every obstacle in the pottery department and others jealousy and the limitations of her gender.
As a woman, she becomes the youngest potter in the department. She starts to make all the ceremonial items used by the royal family as well as their personal use items. She engages in a head to head battle with her nemesis Lee Yook Do and in the end emerges victorious as the head of the department. Her name will forever remain in Joseon annals as one of the most prolific and decorated potters in history.
But in the end, Jung Yi falls into a trap set by the mad jealous Lee Yook Do and becomes coveted by Japanese shogun Toyotomi Hideyoshi who wants her for her ceramic talent. Jung Yi becomes the only one who can end the Japanese invasion. Jung Yi decides to sacrifice herself to end the invasion and goes abroad to Japan with Kim Tae Do. There she creates the famed Joseon-era ceramic that will endure for generations in Japan.
The 15th ruler of Joseon, but a sad ruler who did not have a temple name in the annals of Joseon history since he was deposed. Since he was young he had all the trappings of being a ruler. His intelligence is his downfall. His mother died after giving birth to him and his father King Seonjo resented him for that. Despite not having a father’s love, during the confusion after his passing he seizes power and becomes the King. But his position is still under threat and there is not a day he can spend in peace. His given name is Yi Hon. His father’s love was all given to his younger brother Shinsonggun, and above him his elder brother Imhaegun stands to inherit the throne. He is talented in learning and martial arts, and when he was young he meets Jung Yi when he goes hunting with King Seongjo. She is different than others he’s met, she is not afraid to yell at him and he doesn’t have to be a prince in front of her. She is also not constrained like other females are around him. He really wants to see her, because only this girl can understand his loneliness and worry.
Kim Tae Do
A man who would readily give his life for Jung Yi. From the son of a blacksmith to a military officer in Joseon to a potter, that was the life this man was born to live. Handsome and talented at martial arts, he’s also considerate and thoughtful, the perfect man. A righteous man who only says what is right and does what is righteous. He wields his strength against those who are stronger, and kneels down to the level of those who are weaker. His father was a blacksmith and he grew up with a tool in each hand. But he grew to love the bow and arrow more than the hammer and chisel, in the end he become a warrior.
In his heart there is only Jung Yi, they grew up together like siblings. But the appearance of Gwanghaegun turns it into a love triangle. Tae Do’s skills catch the eye of Gwanghaegun and he comes a military officer. But his heart is conflicted between his liege and the woman he loves. In the Palace, at times he acts as a protector, at times as a lover, always staying by Jung Yi’s side. As Jung Yi overcomes all obstacles to become the top of the pottery department, he decides to give up on her thinking they could never have a happy ending.
At this time, the Japanese invasion of Korea happens and the military personnel is called into action. Tae Do helps Gwanghaegun who is leading the troops and trying to govern, and helps save Prince Imhae who was captured as a hostage by the Japanese. He fights the ninjas attempting to assassinate Gwanghaegun, and in the battle ground where arrows are aiming towards them, he finally tells Jung Yi how deeply he loves her. Even though she doesn’t answer him, he sees in her smile and the tears in her eyes and vows that for the rest of his life, he will live for Jung Yi and not live for his liege. In the end, he leaves for Japan with Jung Yi.
My OTP!!!!! I hope the writer keeps on bringing the TaeJung shippy scenes. I could rewatch them all night long. Have an MV of the first few episodes to make you smile and swoon.
Jung Yi and Tae Do MV set to “Tears Are Also Love”: