11 March 2015


Shine or Go Crazy - Episode 14 (A SqueeCap)

Posted by Kakashi Sensei on March 11, 2015
Poison, poison, much more poison! I'll never be able to drink tea offered to me again without wondering whether ... perhaps ... *______*
JoAnne: Nice story, Yeo Won. Everyone, kill that bish with fire!
S@ki6: Or everyone can just die.  
Episode 14 verdict: Things are getting really intense. I bet somebody will die soon. But who? 
I vote for Yeo Won. Okay, before her I'd rather Uncle Hairline, but then her, definitely. No, her first. Yes. Her first, definitely. Oh I know, arguments about 'product of her environment, no choice, forced to behave this way by the men in her life...' No. She can frame it however she wants, but she's pissed she didn't get her way and it's all an evil temper tantrum.
I had an idea about this, that maybe Yeowon does die, but that Jang Bori takes over her name and role. 

Episode 14

Shin-yool is fiddling around with the poison. She sprinkles a bit of the powder into a bowl of water and the water turns blue! This is the proof she needed: the king has been poisoned with Devil's snare! Facing the raving mad king at that very moment: Wang So. He tries to reason with his brother, calmly, explaining that he has been poisoned and that Wang Sik-Ryeom is behind it. But when he asks for permission to go after the traitors, the King loses it. He runs up to grab his sword and threatens to behead Wang So on the spot.
This just makes me so sad for him, you know. He's terrified. How horrible would it be to live that way? Don't give me crap about it coming with the job, because that's irrelevant. Whether it's common or not, it's terrifying to that individual at that time, and that's what my heart regrets.
Yes, that's fair, and why people with any sense avoid such positions. 
Wang So, oh brave soul, gets up and tenderly addresses him as hyungnim, twice, and swears that he would have his head cut off a thousand and more times if only it would help to heal his brother. But fact is, his brother needs him by his side right now. He'll be his sword. Wang has to die. 
I know that in real life this guy goes on to lay waste to the nobility but in this life that I am paying attention to right now, sigh.... He's a good man who loves his brother, and I found this scene really emotional (me too!!!! Both such good actors, especially in scenes together. They really bring out the best in each other). I love how no matter how far gone his brother is, Wang So is always able to reach him with love and compassion. I don't know if that will always be true, but I'm grateful every time it works.
I wasn't that interested, sorry. I did like the yellow the king was wearing, though.
Hahahaaaa, Saki, you crack me up :)

The next day, the king gives Wang Sik-Ryeom the order to arrest the Righteous Men. They never showed up and are therefore thieves. He also inquires about the move to the West ... and tells Wang he'll nominate his own superintendent. Oh no ... the King is in very bad shape... he faints on his throne.
I think it's a plan, though. With Wang So.
It is.
Next, Consul Wang is riding through the streets like a king himself. Everybody bows deeply ... except for Wang So, who is also there (not quite in royal attire and looking WOW). He invites his uncle for a drink, but  looks really disgusted when he sees how roughly Uncle's bully soldiers clear out a whole inn for them.
I don't understand why he didn't just take the throne for himself in the first place. Why are we going through all this?
No more nice guy, huh. Wang So laughs at his uncle for telling the King that he is the leader of the Righteous Men. What preposterous BS! But then, it's "all in": Wang So says he knows about the poison that his father died of. And he tells Uncle Hairline he'll come visit him soon to collect his "debt".Wang accepts the challenge smiling - he thinks he has the upper hand, does he?
Oh, I cannot wait for this. Uncle Hairline, you are going down.
About time, too. Uncle Hairline is a pointless character. 
Soon after, Wang So instructs his Righteous Men and Women to focus on and find the poison manufacturers. And be prepared: there's an arrest warrant for them now.
One thing I didn't understand - if Uncle Hairline knows who Wang So is, and has had an arrest warrant issued, why is Wang So left free? Why didn't he just grab him up right then?
They are both certain the other is their arch enemy - but both don't have the proof or the authorization to move decisively
And so the plot sticks here. 
In the underground lair, Consul Wang tells Wang Wook about the King's Western Commissioner who will try to make things difficult for them. He also informs Wook that the King is dying from poison. Hm ... what's Wook thinking?! As soon as he can, he pays his sister's room a visit. He overheard the conversation between her and Uncle Wang a while ago, when they spoke about the throne having to become empty! And he seems to know where she keeps the poisons... and I guess the antidotes.
I don't know why but I have a teeny bit of faith in Wang Wook.I guess because he didn't go Full Evil when Shin Yool rejected him?
It's because his hair calmed down. And because he's really good-looking.
Wow, looking handsome. First time for me!
It's a new day and the King's new Superintendent is entering the premises of the Chunghae Trading Company. Guess who? Yes! It's Wang So, of course. Hahahaaaaaa, love both Shin-yool's and Wang Wook's faces. Wook has a thing about claiming to be "one body" and on "one boat" with the Merchants the whole time, even though Shin-yool just told him that the Trading Company will jump ship if necessary. Woah, there is a lot of head-butting from minute one! Wang So clearly wants to obstruct the whole process as much as he can.
It's pretty funny, but it's not a gag that should run long, Writer. Just be careful.
It went on way too long. :-$
When they're done for the day, Wang Wook recounts what Wang So told him some time ago: how he will get rid of the nobles and have the government filled with those who are able, not born into high positions. Wook warns So to stick to his role, that of a superintendent. Or else, Shin-yool might get hurt. Not by his hands, of course ... but by Yeo-won's. Wang So better sort that problem out quickly. He has a point there, our Elf.
You cannot argue with the truth. I believe that Wang So gives Yeo Won wayyyyy too much credit for decency. She is a woman with a brain, some power, and a grudge. Not a very reassuring combination for the 'cheating' husband and the 'other' woman.
He is cheating and ShinYool is the other woman. I don't buy this rubbish about a marriage only being an "arrangement" just because it was arranged.  
Even Jang Hyuk has to stop every now and then and wonder how he got to be so damned handsome
When Wang So walks back alone after receiving the warning from Wang Wook, he encounters Shin-yool on one of the little bridges inside the Trading Company. They know they're being watched by Yeo-won's sentries ... and this time, Wang So cares. They don't utter a word ... he just stares and she bows and then moves aside. But somebody else witnessed their sad silence ... Gyu-dal.
Gyu-dal's fanboying was pretty funny.
Wang Wook just reported to Uncle Wang who the King's new superintendent is, when Wang So is announced. He is here to get all the information about the move to the West from Uncle Wang personally. Hehe. Way to show his disdain for Wook. He is totally going to ruin this party of theirs, right? Se Won (our lurky lurker) (handsome lurker) is watching from behind a wooden panel (and I think this is the whole point of this scene). Wang Sik-Ryeom still thinks he has the upper hand ... but does he really?
At night, Wang So orders his Righteous Men to scatter. Only he, Eun-chun and Cheong-Ok will remain at the main hideout (which, by the way, is inside the city and not in the forest, like Wang Wook suspected).

Gang-Myeong has finally found that person who has knowledge and is in possession of that special gem that was mentioned in episode 13. Now what I got wrong then (DAMN you, Soompi subs, again!) is that it's not the poison turned into gem stones, but the gem stones that protect against the Devil's snare poison. It neutralizes the poison and changes color in the process. That means that anyone who wears that gem in a blue state is the handler of the poison.
Ahhhhh, I somehow thought that the poison was activated by the presence of the stone, and I was watching on Viki, so don't feel too bad. As in: they dip the stone in the poison mixture then grind it up and feed it to the person.
Maybe it does several things? (Just trying a way to consolidate the confusing info)
Oh no ... the beautiful Head of Geishas indeed had to die for what she found out about the first marriage... (I also mourn her great outfits and her make-up! So beautiful!) (She was stunning!) Cheong-Ok is there and tests the tea for poison. But DAMN! Here come Yeo-won's underlings! (Including that hateful snake of a female servant) She puts up a great fight, this woman (I really like her) but they overpower her.
I hate that hateful snake too. She looks like one of those Mean Girls who has no life and is jealous of everyone except for the leader of the Mean Girl Pack, who she idolizes and secretly lusts for and she totally feels like she's important because she gets to run Mean Girl Pack Leader errands, never realizing that Mean Girl Pack Leader will throw her under the bus in a heartbeat. Although I suppose in this case she'd get thrown under a palanquin and stomped on...or maybe under the wheels of a pony cart.
Sure, why not. 
And of course, they'd use her little sister to get her to talk :(( First, the mean servant has her admit she is one of the Righteous. And then, she asks about the bronze mirrors. Yeo-won joins them, pretending to be all sorry about how she has been treated. She gives the battered woman tea and kindly requests she tell her about the bronze mirror. It'll be better for her little sister.
And so begins the unredemptable arc for Yeo Won, who feeds poison to people like its her job.
I have to admit, although I still love Honey Lee's amazing acting, this character is written really badly. But the boys all kill when they feel the need to, so I don't judge Yeowon too harshly here. Seems to be the way things roll in those days. 
Cheong-Ok does ... there are five pieces and the Righteous Men have two. Uncle Wang has the other three. There are the names of five men on that bronze mirror, Cheong-Ok continues. Men that killed the First King. Yeo-won realizes that this is Uncle Wang's insurance (and weak point).
Torn. Yeo Won is a dangerous animal who needs to be taken down...but I'm okay with having her around to destroy Uncle Hairline, first.  Fine, that makes me a terrible person. Whatever.
YeoWon for Kween in her own right! 
Yeo-won has the younger sister sent for - and gives her tea. She didn't, did she?! Oh FOOOK, she did!! The tea was poisoned and both of them will have to die within a day. There is an antidote, though ... so go and get the bronze mirror pieces or die miserably.
Bitch. Genius. No, bitch. Ah, so torn.
At home, Wang So is thinking about the poisoner (could it be Wook?), when his smiley wife comes in. She has some drug-chewing gum for him (to "clear his mind"). She says not to worry, she made it herself. That makes things click in his Highness' brain, but we're not quite there yet. Yeo-won has a few arrows in store herself: because he asks whether she has ever gone to see the Assistant Head by herself, she says indeed so, to have her calculate their consummation date. Per the Queen's orders, too. YIKES.
Okay, just plain bitch. And don't give me crap about her being the rightful wife. Lark or not, Shin Yool married him first, and his heart has always belonged to her. I no longer give a crap about Yeo Won's wait on her wedding night. I wish her a thousand nights more like that. She will die alone, mourned only by Se Won (possibly, but I suspect even he will have to acknowledge her evil eventually.) Actually, I think that if she does die, if they do depart from history that far, she'll have 3 mourners - Wang So, Wang Wook, and Se Won, all of whom will understand that she's not entirely to blame for her choices. Which leaves me free to say 'Fuck you, bitch, die.' Yay!  No, I do have a little sympathy for her...but she still needs to be put down like a rabid dog.
I still like YeoWon and dislike ShinYool. 
Discussions over the Western move continue. Wang So has the brilliant idea to collect taxes from the rich - that'll cover all expenses. Oups, Wook gets mighty mad at that suggestion. Haha, Wang So says he just can't talk to Wook. Wook shouts that his words are the Consul's words and Wang So shouts back that his words are the King's words. And whom do the people of Goryeo have to listen to?
The grown up, political version of 'my dad can beat up your dad!' You know reluctant bromance is coming, eventually, right?
Mentally tuned out because, yawn. And I don't give two hoots about bromance, I want a sizzling romance!
At the gate, the two princes go in opposite directions ... both seem to be stewing with anger, but not for the same reasons. Wang So has only taken a few steps when Gyu-Dal runs after him and stops him. He tells him that Kaebong left something for him in the storage room. Once he has him in there, Gyu-dal locks the door. Wang So's insult don't help. Time for playing cupid? This is one of their "places" after all...
Every time they go here, I think of R. Kelly's magnum opus, Trapped in the Closet. If you're not familiar, go ahead.  It's all on YouTube.  Set aside an afternoon.
Yes! He tells Shin-yool that her Nanny fell badly in the warehouse and has her rushing there. Once in, there's no Baek-Myo... only Wang So, wrapped in a leopard skin. Haha. When he sees who has come in, he immediately knows that it's Gyu-dal's doing. (Who, by the way, is really pleased with himself)
I say give that man a cookie!
Inside, Shin-yool tries to keep her distance. She also lies again, when he asks whether it was his wife that threatened her - I guess he knows better. He has a message for Kaebong again, too: There is no sunshine when she's gone. He misses the days when he was So So and near her. His heart was full of joy, warmth and laughter back then.
Great now all I can think of is that song
That was intentional :) 
Still, she tries to remain detached. Kaebong, she informs him, isn't here. He knows that! And that's why he is planning a long trip to find him. Just she try to stop him. And he starts yelling "Kaebong-ah" nonstop. Ahahaha, what a lunatic. 
A handsome man with a big heart, a sense of right and wrong, and the ability to make you laugh. Sigh...
She is mortified that somebody might hear and grabs him by the arm, calling him "hyungnim". Now, he is overjoyed that he has found his Kaebong! Overjoyed and loud again, so she puts her hand on his mouth and they ... tumble down. Knocking over a box of feathers. It's beautiful. They are beautiful. Make beautiful babies!!!
So many babies! Yes! Can't they just run away together and live on love? I mean, save King first, but then?
But no, she pulls away and pulls him up (whyyyyy??!) and then scolds him for always causing trouble. He offers to work for her for 10 days to make it up. 10 days?! Make it 10 months! is her response. Ah, because she likes to see him that much? She takes a feather and starts "hitting" him with it, more and more playfully.
He pulls her into an embrace ... an embrace that lasts for a long time and becomes more and more desperate. When they break apart, they're both really sad. Yes, it's terrible if two people who love each other so much can't be together.
Man, I felt that hug. That feeling where you can't breathe if you can't touch that person, you need that specific warmth to fill up your energy, no other will do, where you know that that person is YOUR person, even if it's impossible - it was all there on the screen.
Yeo-won is questioning her brother about his motives: Why is he helping Uncle Wang? To become King, is Wang Wook's answer. But to Yeo-won, this is a problem. If he were to become king, he would simply be Wang Sik-Ryeom's puppet. He doesn't care, because his "loved one" will be by his side. Bleh. It doesn't make her happy either: she wants a strong king. (She's right. And she does use her talents and skills and questionable sense of right and wrong specifically for this goal, a strong Goryeo king.)  And it doesn't seem like her brother will be that. But she also tells him there is a way nobody will get hurt: If Wang Wook wins Shin-yool's heart.
Trying to decide if she's encouraging him simply because it furthers her aims. I think probably, because if Wook does become a puppet king, Yeo Won still has the issue of Uncle, and it's becoming clear she considers him a problem. So all of this is ONLY because she thinks it will break up SoSo and Kaebong. Yeo Won doesn't make it obvious, but in the end she's become the prototypical scorned second lead.
Scorned second leads are so boring.  
Yes - that is going on. BUT. What I find interesting here is that she cares for her little brother. And at the moment, he is becoming a problem for her and her plans to make Wang So the King - she was quite worried there for a moment. The only way she can keep protecting little bro and get what she wants is if little bro at least gets rid of the Shin-yool problem
Yes, she definitely cares for little bro and she would've liked him to be the strong king, but now, she's set her sights on Wang So, since little bro is not very strong at all. 
Wang So sees a badly staggering Cheong-Ok entering their hide-out and witnesses how she tries to steal the bronze mirror pieces. He realizes she has been poisoned and hears about her little sister. When he hears it's his wife (who also killed the gisaeng queen), he lets her go.
He's horrified but also genuinely sad to discover bit by bit that Yeo Won is a murderous monster. In his way, I think he felt respect and the beginnings of friendship for her.
And how many peole has he chopped down in furtherance of his political goals? 
Back in Yeo-won's torture house, Cheong-Ok hands over the mirror, but refuses to drink the antidote herself. Unless Yeo-won promises her and her little sister protection. And Yeo-won takes the bait: Cheong-Ok will be Wol Hyang Ryu's new owner.
Must be a plan. Must be.
The only way we could've doubted that it's a plan is if we hadn't seen Wang So conspiring with Cheong-Ok.
At home, Yeo Won is full of glee over how she will make a strong king that doesn't care for nobility when Wang So bursts in. All he does is ask for a cup of tea (DON'T DRINK IT!!!), but she senses that something is up with him. Yes, lady ... he friggin knows you did it! He asks about medicines and stuff but she remains hopeful he is here because she offered him her hand the other night. He just laughs at that and excuses himself.
Ah, Yeo Won. I sort of think you grabbed on to a piece of Wang So's philosophy, but you've twisted it.  And also - so, what? Are you going to kill off your precious Wook, now, too? Regardless, it's too late. Your Wang So dreamship has sailed off, never to return: he'll never partner up with you now that he knows what you do to people.
The King's nosebleed has started. He cannot attend the meeting to discuss the move to the West. Ji-mong suggests they cancel today's meeting, but Wang Sik-Ryeom has a different idea: he climbs up the stairs to the throne and declares that he will supervise and execute today's meeting. It's the position of the Consul: if something happens to the King, it's the consul's job to take care of everything. Wait ... does that mean that Uncle Wang can seize power as long as the King is just ill but not dead?! EEeeeeeeeeh!!!
I think Uncle Hairline is a bit premature but there's no one to stop him.
Shin-yool enters Yeo-won's chambers. Damn, that princess really can't stop bugging her, right? Of course, she offers tea again. Yeo-won is displeased: wasn't she promised that Shin-yool would cut all ties with Wang So? Well, that is kinda difficult with this whole superintendent business, isn't it! But Yeo-won is quite clear about what she wants: for Shin-yool to close down the Trading Company and leave Goryeo.
I do love the eye battles, I have to admit.
Shin-yool reaches for the tea ... and two bracelets become apparent around her wrist. One with green stones, one with the natural stone. BUSTED!
Booyah, Bish! I gots bracelets of my OWN!  


We're steadily moving along in this drama; no major secrets remain major secrets for long. I like that! I don't care at all how people find out what they find out - I just like that they find out. And there was important finding out in this episode. We now have certainty what kind of poison the King was exposed to and Wang So strongly suspects his wife is the poisoner ... but what will he do with this knowledge? He needs the antidote, so he can't do much against her.
True. He has to tread especially carefully now.  Piss off the vengeful virgin too much and you'll regret it. What I like about this drama is that they use common plot points and somehow make it so that you don't even CARE that you've seen this before.  You're so engrossed in what's on the screen that half the time you don't even try to think ahead, you just throw yourself into the story and let it unfold.
It's turning too much into a regular rom-com-with-a-bit-of-melo drama for me, complete with everyone turning on the crazy second female lead.  At this point, I'm just wondering if they'll get out of this wrong history quagmire by killing off Yeowon and having ShinYool take over her name and place.

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