Splendid Politics (Hwajung) : Episodes 9 & 10

I am happy to report that the last weeks’ episodes had me giggling and crying, and I realize that this drama has truly made me fall for it! 10 episodes have aired to date and the story is getting more interesting, now that most of the characters are in the same place that is the capital of Joseon. I am impatient to see the future developments but at the same time, I don’t want it to end too quickly!

[Episode 9]

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Gae-si, the walking birth control

She was not even a beloved consort of the king, yet she was the one who played an important role in ensuring that there would be no other siblings rivalry between Gwanghae’s kids. Having witnessed how hard it was for Gwanghae to claim his rightful position before he eventually succeed, Lady Kim took it upon herself that it was her duty to ensure that history won’t repeat itself with the current Crown Prince. Even the Queen knew about it but she couldn’t do anything because Lady Kim was taking the necessary steps, even if her methods were not that clean.

Oh, I love how she had started to wear the evil eyeliners and that her hanbok had gotten darker and more impressive.

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The pact

Joo-won found out that Hwa-yi/ Jungmyung worked with a sulfur mine and asked for her help to arrange a meeting with a sulfur dealer. Of course, Hwa-yi wasted no time to help him, with the hope to make Joo-won her ticket to return to Joseon. I guess Maruno still had his humanistic side to him because he was aware of Hwa-yi’s real intention of helping the Joseon envoy, yet he let her took the risk of meeting the dealer if that could bring her back to Joseon.

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Deal and sight-seeing

Joo-won dressed up as a Japanese man for the meeting and Hwa-yi accompanied him there. I gotta give the credit to Hwa-yi because if not because of her, the deal might not go through, but Joo-won was still the upright man he was since childhood and chided her for risking Joseon’s safety. Ah, this might be where the misunderstanding started between them, since Joo-won seemed to be a Gwanghae loyalist from Hwa-yi’s point of view.

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I really enjoy the sight-seeing scene because Joo-won and Jungmyung met during the complicated moment of her life, hence they didn’t get to have sweet scenes during the childhood portions. Heh, Hwa-yi was having a great time teasing the rigid Joo-won and he was totally trolled during the bathhouse scene! Still, he was a man through and through, and found it hard to resist the temptation of a brothel. Kekeke! I love the budding friendship between these two!

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Gwanghae’s night activities

Gwanghae had joined a trip to the Ming border to Yi-cheom’s suspicion, but he was not the same Gwanghae anymore; he did not hesitate to put down Yi-cheom’s constant enquiry and made a point that he could do what he wanted without reporting everything to Yi-cheom. He actually planned something beforehand with his old acquaintances from the war times  and sneaked out from the camp to meet them. His plan was indeed dangerous, because Gwanghae soon attacked the Ming soldiers stationed at the border to retrieve his spy Heo Gyun, together with a book.

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An act of betrayal?

The exchange scheduled between Joo-won and the smuggler’s side turned awry when the authorities were alerted by no other than Minister Kang. Hwa-yi sacrificed herself by turning herself in, with the hope that Joo-won would save her, but he had another pressing issue he had to deal with: he learned that the trip was not for the sulfur. Gwanghae was only using him as a bait for Minister Kang, and sulfur was just his excuse to lure Minister Kang out of his hiding place. Ooh, that must had hurt Joo-won despite his constant dispute with Gwanghae because he was only carrying his duties, only to have his hard work trampled by the person who asked for his help. 

[Episode 10]

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Save the Princess

Hwa-yi put her faith in Joo-won, because she still remembered his promise to protect her. Ah, she was taking a big risk there, but Joo-won was already planning for her rescue, joined by Ja-kyung. Ja-kyung went to save Hwa-yi and Joo-won was going to join him afterwards, but the everything didn’t go as planned since the ship was  about to sail. Joo-won chose to board the ship first, while Hwa-yi was on the run with Ja-kyung.

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Ja-kyung decided to stay behind and face the guards chasing after them while Hwa-yi leave first to catch the ship. This felt like a repetition of what she experienced with Lady Choi back then, only for her attendant to die in the explosion to protect her. It was nice to know that Ja-kyung believed that she was indeed a princess, and he promised to follow after her to Joseon. I hope he would keep his promise and return unscathed!

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Hwa-yi was too late when she reached the port as the ship had sailed, and her hope was shattered at that moment…but her hope returned with the return of Joo-won on a small boat to fetch her. Awww, he was so concerned about her, but Hwa-yi was still bitter about abandoning Ja-kyung because of Joo-won’s plan.

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Joo-won ordered his bodyguard to stop the ship so that Hwa-yi and him could catch up with and board the ship, and he was really lucky to escape the scrutinizing Minister Kang’s eyes! He was less than lucky when it came to Hwa-yi/Jungmyung, because she was under the impression that Joo-won was loyal to Gwanghae.

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Touchdown: Joseon

Yeah, everyone’s breathing the same Joseon air at that moment! They reached the country and Hwa-yi/ Jungmyung cursed because she could not tell where she lived before she went to Japan. Hahaha! Joo-won seized the chance to tease her but he was still protective of her, telling Hwa-yi to stay home instead of wandering around the city since she did not have any identification plate with her.

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This cap was hilarious on its own, simply because of their expressions. HAAAA~

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Grooming the young man, Gwanghae’s style

Gwanghae and Joo-won continued their passive-aggressive interaction. The king was well aware of how angry the young man must had been, but Joo-won kept his cool throughout the audience despite Gwanghae’s continuous attempt to challenge him. Gwanghae then gave an advice to Joo-won, telling the officer to practive being void of emotions after proving his ability to suppress his anger. Was he going to make Joo-won a carbon copy of himself? Gwanghae admitted that he saw someone in Joo-won, and his view was supported by Heo Gyun, who saw Deok-hyung in Joo-won. Awwww that would be the best compliment for him!

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Hwa-yi, back to Jungmyung

Jungmyung managed to find out where Queen Inmok was staying after asking few people who were reluctant to talk about the matter. She went to catch a glimpse of her mother but found the place heavily guarded. However, she saw Deok-hyung’s friends paying a visit there and she thought that they might be able to help her.

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And then…In-woo appeared at Joo-won’s house searching for his friend but Hwa-yi thought he was an intruder she saw before that. Well…it was just a matter of seconds for In-woo to give a dirty eye at Joo-won, because his upright friend was hiding a lady in his house while pointing at Hwa-yi! Oops, the cat’s out of the bag, but I wouldn’t mind it if they don’t drag it for too long! It’s better for Joo-won to find out sooner 😉

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3 thoughts on “Splendid Politics (Hwajung) : Episodes 9 & 10

  1. putting aside the actual history…. just talk about k-drama and the strong (plus not so strong casts) somewhat i preferred Ja-kyung…. yes.. instead of the hunk leads, the main handsome charming leads that main actresses fall head over heels in love with, i had always preferred the silent tortured Sacrificial unconditional supporting man beside all the silly beauties. ….
    as always… from ” Bad Boy” ( preferred Kim Jae-Wook instead of Kim Nam-gil), Bel Ami (preferred Lee Jangwoo than Jang Keun-suk), to Fachion King (preferred Lee Je-hoon than Yoo Ah-in)… guess i preferred the Ja-kyung, … he likely will walked the path of Jae-wook, Jangwoo, Je-hoon… and still end up earning not the heart of the girl he will lived or died to protect and treasure and love…. nonetheless, history depict that this shall be a tragedy in the end… so whosoever has the heart of the princess… will still end up breaking together with her in the end…. and the story-writer may just kill off Ja-kyung mid story… hmmm…..
    sorry, Joo-won?… pretty face, but a bit too perfect (and woody- acted ) for my liking…. we shall see….
    –don’t means to offend any Joo-won fans… sorry :p

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