So far at The Secret Hotel, we have: one definite murder, two possible murders, several serious suspects, an elopement, a marriage, and far too many secrets to count. We take a trip away from the hotel this hour, and there’s nothing like new surroundings to bring old problems to a boiling point. Detective Kim sidles closer to Young-mi’s body, and with his own eyes closed, the squeamish detective reaches over and closes her eyes.
She also doesn’t believe in acquiring status through marriage, but despite her strong words, the reporters are locked on their Cinderella interpretation, and Hae-young has to get her to back down.
Meanwhile, Sang-hyo grouses that Hae-young must be pleased he made her a Cinderella and got to become a prince. He eludes answering Sang-hyo properly, so she’s relieved because she thinks it was all a dream.
Hae-young challenges her version of events, and Sang-hyo argues back: Did he think she married him (again) out of lingering feelings, or to work things out?
She makes to unpack in the bedroom when she realizes Eun-joo filled her suitcase with little lacy nothings and other unspeakables. In a tussle to reclaim his Viagra, Sang-hyo lands on the bed with Hae-young on top, putting them face-to-face.
Meanwhile, Sung-gyum’s is notified that the Gu Hae-young couple have arrived, and he heads out to say hello.
Sang-hyo just observes from the doorway, and Soo-ah repeats her dig about her being a substitute. Outside, Sung-gyum and his guide are making their way up the steps to Hae-young’s suite. He invites her to dinner tomorrow when he’ll be back in the city, and she flounders for something to say. Hae-young finds her just then and she goes at him with fists and feet like an angry toddler, blaming him for everything, while he ruffles her hair and enjoys the love. At the resort, Hae-young and Sang-hyo sit in front of a campfire, a tent pitched behind them. Hae-young pulls her close, holding her eyes as he asks, “Do you really think I’d leave you behind? In the suite, Soo-ah gripes to herself about Ki-ho leaving just because she said so — and she said so because he stopped her from ordering expensive room service. She hears the door open, and starts a self-pitying lament at Ki-ho, but she turns around to find it’s actually Sang-hyo.
Soo-ah has her own one-sided heart-to-heart with Sang-hyo, who makes faces but listens to her words, about how Soo-ah had wanted to marry Hae-young since she was a kid. She tells Sang-hyo that she envies her: Because of her inferiority, a hotel employee like her could love a chauffeur like Ki-ho without problems.
Kim now consults with Team Leader Cha, who tells him that it must have been modified before it was stored away, right there in the Security Office. On his way out of the hotel, Detective Kim is grabbed by the gossiping staffer, who repeats that he knows who the culprit is. Still at the resort, Sung-gyum smiles at the heart-shaped stone, and writes a congratulatory card to Hae-young and Soo-ah. As the ladies get dressed in the suite, Soo-ah continues to deliver insults veiled as compliments to Sang-hyo. Wearied, Sang-hyo heads out and he tries to follow, but Soo-ah holds him up, peppering him with questions about Ki-ho which he brushes off.
Detective Kim and the staffer make it to the hotel gardens, where Kim assures him he can speak safely. At the resort, Sang-hyo secretly watches Sung-gyum from around a corner, to make sure he leaves. Soo-ah is sad such a good oppa has to suffer by falling in love with her, and then having to fake-marry someone like Sang-hyo. Increasingly furious, Sang-hyo finally breaks and she launches herself at a returning Hae-young, landing a punch in his face. Watching him thaw into a human being around Sang-hyo has been sweet, but there’s still something off about him. The other mystery in this show is how and why Sang-hyo and Hae-young broke up in the first place. Although the point doesn’t need belaboring, Hae-young is much too mature and grown-up for Soo-ah and they were never a good match. You really summed up what I like about this heroine; she demands respect because she is good at her job. Eun Joo is one of my fav characters, she’s just so sassy and spoke her mind well ( she knows she likes Sung Gyeom and work for it). I thought Eun Joo might be the murderer at first, but realized that it might be another red herring. And I thought it was super weird for Jung Eun to be crying in the staff area at the hotel… Like don’t they have tighter security or something ? Yeah I was trying to figure out if it was just poor medical knowledge or a hint that there was more to the murder…but if someone strangled her after that I feel like the blood in the tub would have been smeared in a struggle or something. Yes, it’s extremely difficult to suffer a broken larynx without taking a direct blow to it from the front of the neck, because it is protected by your jaw hanging over it, your neck muscles to the sides. The most likely exception is strangulation (like being hanged) where the larynx (and trachea for that matter) is smashed against the spine in the back of the neck resulting in its injury. I’m curious if the drama actually did its homework and does indeed reveal later that Young Mi was strangled to death.
More likely, it’s a technical slip up in the plot, but hey, would love to be proven wrong.
As for the secret behind the murder of Sung Gyum’s father, what if it was an accident that occurred while the father and mother were arguing.
But didn’t she find out about her illness at pretty much the same day or the day before the murder?
But I must say: everybody in this show (lead couple, I am looking at you) needs to use their words. I’m a little confused about Team Leader Chain the previous episodes, is he scared of Gi-chul or has found out about Gi-chul’s habit and taken advantage of it to get an alibi?
What is even more frustrating is how Sang-hyo and Hwa-young are unable to spend at least an hour alone together without a dead body, exes, hotel issues and a boss who has a habit of appearing suddenly. I’m sure we will get more answers in the upcoming episodes, there are only 8 episodes left! One of my guesses has been the whole security dept is the killer and laughed to myself imagining them shocking everyone and taking over the whole building or something. This episode marks the death of politeness—everyone stops dancing around and playing nice on the surface, and we witness how quickly one false move puts the prince’s life in peril.
Both Sun and his teacher look back and forth in shock, and Teacher Park is the one to raise his voice that this is an outrage—the prince is not the killer! Teacher Park goes straight to Prime Minister Kim to have it out with him, and grabs him by the collar to shake the truth out of him. Princess Hyegyeong receives word that her husband has just been arrested for murder, and runs out of her palace to ask her father what’s happening. But Sun knows the answer to that question is about to open up a can of worms, and he looks back and forth between Teacher Park and Prime Minister Kim.
Their heads turn with his every movement, and they all gape in horror as Sun stops… right in front of Prime Minister Kim.
Sun accuses him of ordering the deaths of the two royal artists, and then the death of Shadow to tie up loose ends. Sun approaches him with the copy of the maengui, the secret document that Heung-bok transcribed into the pages of Ji-dam’s novel.
Yeongjo’s eyes dart left to right searching for a way out, but all he can do is grab the incriminating pages and fall to the ground, as his ministers look on. Whoosh, back to the interrogation, as Yeongjo prods Sun for an answer as to why he sought out Shadow in the first place.
And then in a move that really drops jaws, Yeongjo orders Sun to be locked up in jail until he decides he wants to start answering questions truthfully. It’s only when Yeongjo leaves the scene that he betrays any anguish at treating his son that way. Prime Minister Kim says he just regrets the fact that the prince has to suffer, so then Sun asks him to personally prove his innocence if he really feels that way.
The prince’s people focus on the murder weapon that was planted at the crime scene, and Advisor Chae entreats Court Lady Choi to remember any suspicious activity from any of her staff. When Sun turns around to return to his cell, she calls out after him, “You will come out.
And while we all suspected as much given the historical context, we finally get to the meat and potatoes of the secret document—it details the intent to place a new king on the throne, and says that history will forgive the use of swords and poison (King Gyeongjong died of mysterious causes, and it was always suspected that he was poisoned).
Sun looks at the signatures (all nicknames or codenames) and recognizes only one: that of Prime Minister Kim Taek. He spits defensively that while his brother only wore the royal robes for four years, he’s worn them for thirty, always in service of the people and never once with any selfish desires for power beyond that. Hyegyeong and Teacher Park each take turns trying to get an audience with the king, but keep getting rejected at every turn. Advisor Chae visits Sun in prison and has a fit about him taking the fall and not naming Teacher Park as the killer.
Sun says that Teacher Park wants the same thing that they want, and asks Advisor Chae to keep this between them for now. Ji-dam and her father hear of the prince’s arrest and worry that things have gone massively astray. Princess Hyegyeong, meanwhile, is busy ordering the prince’s eunuch to stab himself in the neck with a knife, for failing in his duties to protect Sun. Chae suggests they head back to his home because he has things to ask Ji-dam, but when they get there, they find the house overturned and his servant crying that men in black stormed in here and took Ji-dam away. Teacher Park promises to free Sun and receive his just punishment when all is said and done, and asks the prince to trust him and wait. Teacher Park seeks out the mayor to go over the particulars of the case, but is informed that everything’s already been handed over to the state tribunal. Park swears that the real killer is someone else, but they don’t give a damn about that. That’s awfully dangerous talk, and Teacher Park follows the Soron leader to ask if he really intends to use the document to overthrow Yeongjo and place someone else in power.
Park sighs to see Yeongjo’s motives so plainly, and asks if he likes power that much, to risk his own son.
Yeongjo is practically dancing rhetorical circles around Park, and asks for the secret document so they can free the prince and put him back in his rightful place. It’s clear now that Yeongjo is too far gone, and Park refuses to hand over the document. Park storms into Prime Minister Kim’s home and demands that Chul-joo and Ji-dam be returned to their rightful places by tomorrow.
Sun slams his fist into the wall when Advisor Chae tells him that Ji-dam and Chul-joo are missing. Advisor Chae is startled because he recognizes the name for Prime Minister Kim, and identifies a few other key Noron members, Min Baek-sang and Kim Sang-ro, members of the prime minister’s inner circle. Advisor Chae gives Eunuch Jang instructions to begin the search, but the eunuch hems and haws awkwardly. Elsewhere in the palace, Hyegyeong opens up a suspiciously large sack… and there inside is a hog-tied and gagged Ji-dam. Hyegyeong tamps down her anger to say that she isn’t kidnapping her—she needs her testimony. Advisor Chae loses his temper when he hears that Hyegyeong has Ji-dam, and that Eunuch Jang basically spilled all his beans under pressure.
Hyegyeong has Ji-dam safely moved to her palace, and asks her father to have Officer Min brought here. Sun is pacing in his cell when Advisor Chae returns, and is shocked to hear that Ji-dam is safe in Hyegyeong’s care, of all people. The Noron ministers realize that it’s possible that the princess has Ji-dam, and that actually fills them with dread. Little San is exhausted, but Hyegyeong refuses to let her court lady comfort him, and puts the child right back by her side to do his duty as the royal heir. It’s probably saddest for Teacher Park, who put his faith in those good intentions one too many times. I like that things are out in the open too, because the last two episodes have been a big step up, with heavier consequences, bigger stakes, and a nice funneling of all the disparate story elements into one central conflict that drives each episode.
After see how the LH earnestly tried her best to freed Sado, it is going to be really hurt when she decide to abandon her husband for her child sake. It could be that Sado ended up in a position from which there was no escape, much like Queen Anne Boleyn or Richard II in England. I’m glad to see that Hyegeong is shown as loyal to her husband and determined to help him as much as she can. This show really benefited from the strong actors, I can’t imagine anyone else do what Park Eun Bin doing, being mad and in love in one stare. I appreciate the gumption of the Princess but I think that the conflicting ideologies of Sun and Hyegyeong will weaken their bond.
Did anyone else feel the shiver of foreshadowing when Advisor Chae tells Teacher Park that he’s worried that if Ji-dam dies, Sun will never forgive himself and just break?
For the first half of the episode, KIM JOO-WON (Hyun Bin) pretty much ticks off all the boxes on the checklist of the Cold K-drama Hero: rich, arrogant, brusque, little tolerance for incompetence, fashionable, etc. Thankfully, she’s got her hot boss on her side, IM JONG-SOO (Philip Lee), the director of the action school who sees her for her worth.
The two cousins have a competitive relationship, though I think it’s more on the side of Joo-won, who always has to one-up his hyung. We start out with a lush, extravagant landscape straight out of an Austen novel, zooming across the well-kept grounds to the enormous mansion where our hero, Kim Joo-won, resides. His rich, successful celebrity cousin Oska lives in the same environs, and as he heads into the city that morning, Joo-won can’t escape witnessing Oska making out with his actress girlfriend at the side of the road.
Joo-won meets his mat-seon date at a museum, and Seul does her best to impress him with her looks, smarts, background. As they walk through the museum and have coffee, Seul notes his detachment and remarks that he’s free to leave. She also had a past relationship with Oska, which she intends to keep a secret from Joo-won.
The ritzy ladies of the VIP lounge burst into a chorus of murmurs and dirty looks when a woman enters, and you can practically see the signs lighting up above the well-coifed heads that are smoking with indignation: SHE IS NOT ONE OF US.
Seul stands up for all the oppressed rich ladies forced to endure this affront to their delicate sensibilities and confronts Ra-im, who dares to inflict her off-the-rack clothing and tough-girl looks upon them. Contrary to my expectation, Ra-im doesn’t fight or talk back, but quickly offers to leave.
Ra-im isn’t particularly inclined to go after the thief, but the girl launches into a bout of hysterics, and Ra-im sees that this might help her case. Seul was lying, and rather than rifling through the garbage, she gives up the pin from her purse and declares that they’re square. Ra-im doesn’t like being pitied, and cutely responds in a way designed to ward off sympathy: by joking that this is the burden of being born so pretty, sigh, but what can she do about it?
Interestingly, it seems that Ra-im does have an inner girly side, but she keeps it covered up with her tomboyish attitude. He gives her tickets to an Oska concert, knowing she’s a huge fan, and puts the tickets into her locker.
Seul is also here, looking wistful, which I suppose supports the idea that she does, technically, have a heart. In addition to his lax work schedule, another reason Joo-won’s employees complain is his pretentious insistence on taking the escalators.

This puts Chae-rin in a foul mood, so when she reluctantly practices for the upcoming action scene, she makes an angry swipe in the air with her sword — straight at Ra-im.
Chae-rin shrieks over a teeny scratch on her thumb while Ra-im has suffered the brunt of impact, landing on glass and cutting her arm. The director yells at Ra-im for injuring the actress, while Jong-soo gets indignant on her behalf.
While waiting in the suite, Ra-im thinks back to that first meeting, when she was playing the double for Kim Sun-ah (another call-out! The following conversation is a silly mix of double entendres and miscontrued meanings as Joo-won and Ra-im have two entirely different conversations with each other. Ra-im finally catches on that he thinks she’s Chae-rin, then calls him a country bumpkin for making such a silly mistake. She gets a call from the AD about their afternoon shoot, so she offers to bring Joo-won to Chae-rin. They make it back in time for Joo-won to get to the press conference before Chae-rin confirms anything. On his way out, Joo-won catches a glimpse of Ra-im in the thick of a fighting scene, and the sight of her awesome skills has him impressed, and even a bit smitten. He waits around to catch her after she’s done filming, and talks to her in his blunt, inquisitive way. Joo-won drives slowly, keeping his gaze fixed on Ra-im trudging along, and finally pulls over.
Just then, a van screeches up and out pops Oska, who’s dying to know what happened with Chae-rin. Joo-won sighs that he’s in playboy mode again, but it seems Oska really does remember her. Ra-im all but melts into a fan-worshippy puddle at his feet, touched to be remembered by her star crush. What I dig the most is the abundant sense of humor, and how the actors are really going for it. But what I love most about these characters is how both leads have these contradictory sides. Funny ,I was NEVER a fan of Hyun Bin (or Ha Ji Won) but he totally won me over by episode 2. Hyun bin face is too skinny, I like him better when he’s a bit fluffy and Yong Sang Hyun looking more like Yoon Eun Hye.
I am now curious to see how comedic Hyun Bin is, since i’ve never seen him as someone very comedic. It’s kind of strange, but amongst all the time-travelers, aliens, and super-powered folk in dramaland these days, the conventional melodrama is becoming the rarer species.
The drama stars Hwang Jung-eum as the sunny, optimistic heroine who’s about to marry the love of her life, up-and-coming prosecutor Bae Soo-bin. The drama will then jump forward to after the heroine serves her prison term for the crime, and Bae Soo-bin has left her high and dry.
Secret follows Sword and Flower (with a break for a few drama specials) and premieres September 25 on KBS.
I’m hoping Ji Sung discovers early on who the real culprit is before falling in love with HJE. Actually it will be more interesting if Ji Sung falls in love with her not knowing the real culprit.
With her going to prison and finding out her bf left her, I kind of want her to be cold and hard. Also is it just me or does BSB always seem to be playing the good guy that always ends up being a true a-hole?
So like song joong ki’s character in nice guy after he takes the fall for the murder.
I totally agree – is she still going to be perky and optimistic after years in prison and being dumped by the guy she took the fall for? This would be a lot more interesting if the girl, after serving her prison term, came out determined to get revenge.
Omo omo this sounds good actually, I mean I don’t have the best judgement when it comes to dramas I usually decide to watch a drama only if dramabeans is recapping it. I wasn’t too sure about this drama but after seeing the stills, I am definitely going to give this a try. HJE is suppose to serve a prison sentence for her scumbag bf, so she should finally have normal hairdo. Strangely I am intrigue and I wanna see this…hmm maybe I might be up for a melodrama this year. Upcoming weekend drama Secret Garden has already been sold abroad, more than two weeks before its premiere date. It’s only been a few weeks since filming began, but Secret Garden has already been sold to Hong Kong and the Philippines, and deals are currently in the works for Japan, Thailand, Singapore, and Malaysia to broadcast as well. The writer-PD duo (Kim Eun-sook and Shin Woo-chul) is the same team behind Lovers in Paris, Lovers in Prague, and On Air.
Kim Eun Sook is probably now the most popular writer in Hallyu (Lovers trilogy, City Hall, On Air .
The FTW move would be to pull a Hong Sisters meta move and have each star parody the other.
I’m going to watch just to see how they can make a romance in this situation plausible.
I cant wait for this drama to start!no matter what the name of the two will make the drama onair. You are forgetting TV5, they bought Smile, YOu (Honey) and Runaway eventhough they are still showing in Korea. Is SG turns out as City Hall (comedy at first, then romcom then epic romance with lots of drama thrown into the mix)? When I first read about Secret Garden I thought if only the Hong Sisters were the writers of this drama, IT WOULD BE EPIC. Six years ago, Song’s character had vowed to capture Kang and saw the agent as he slipped away from a violent scene that unfolded in a busy city street.
With its popularity soaring, weekend drama Secret Garden is planning an OST concert to be held next weekend, just in time for the drama’s finale.
My first thought was that it was odd timing to schedule the concert for broadcast night — great way to keep fans from watching, right?
The concert will be pulling double-duty, because footage from the Saturday night show will then be used in Sunday night’s finale broadcast. The pricing has drawn some disgruntled complaints, however, as many feel the 99,000 won price tag is too steep (close to $90 USD). Every minute of the day, I’m listening to the ost songs including Hyun Bin’s!!!!! Can’t wait till the season finale, I hope the people sub it soon but thanks JB and GF for putting up all the recaps, its really great that I can understand whats going on!!! It’s a bit expensive, but who wouldn’t pay for that to see Binnie and hear him sing!!!aaahhh just imagining that!!! I would pay $90 to see the cast in that concert, but I would freak out and demand a refund if I see Hyun-Bin in that tracksuit. I wonder if my parents would be upset if I got refund for my ticket to visit them, and flew to Korea instead… My vacation time is already approved, so no problem there.
Even though I like the cast, I wouldn’t pay $99 bucks to go to the concert, unless I got a free ticket or if I were a millionaire.
I’ve always been good and I know this is a bit late but, pleasee oh pleasee give me a ticket to go see the concert!
New clues point to new suspects, but also keep raising more questions and widening the web of players. Eun-joo happily reports that Soo-ah ditched, which makes Sang-hyo even more worried, because then what happened to the wedding?
This is (unpleasant) news to Sang-hyo; Eun-joo stuffs her into the car with a warning that the reporters are watching and sends them off with a big grin. He tells GM Lee not to suspect him, and that he can restore his reputation — because he, too, knows who the culprit is.
As Sung-gyum passes through the lobby, we see Hae-young and Sang-hyo coming up to the entrance. In the charged moment that follows, Hae-young starts to say something about the two of them starting over, when it’s broken by a knock at the door. She contends that she has every right to stay there since her name’s also on the reservation. Hae-young follows her to the opened door (eek, Sung-gyum is right there!) and, pulling it shut (whew!), asks her to stay. She starts to paw at Sang-hyo’s suitcase, and crows with mirth to discover the racy underwear, which she exhibits to Hae-young. He calls her out on the act, and unbeknowst to them, they are actually within feet of each other, but facing opposite directions. She thinks back to the night before, when she had run into Hae-young (carrying an unconscious Sang-hyo), who told her to call the police because there was a body in the bathroom. Soo-ah, though, wakes up and immediately fusses that she didn’t sleep a wink because of Sang-hyo. Cha suggests that while the crime was being committed, someone must have erased the recording in the office. That particular evening was chaotic because of the wedding, with the whole team employed on the ground. Eun-joo steels herself, remembering Young-mi’s body, and opens the door to a pristine interior. She worries about how he’ll take the news of her sudden marriage, when Hae-young takes her by surprise. Maybe it’s the way he seems to look around people rather than at them, or slightly off to the left.
For example, with Sung-gyum: As her boss, the power balance skews in his direction, but she exacts respect nevertheless. I’m really beginning to think she is calculatedly vindictive, using the harmless puppy veneer to give herself a free pass.
Theoretically, we should be able to narrow down the suspects by who was absent at the wedding ceremony. Her character development also proves that you can have a woman who is good at her job without being a crazy harpy or without just plucky and lucky. Once Upon a Time in Saengchori with Eun-jo(Lee Young-eun) in the lead, it was hilarious with lots of mystery and suspense, I marathoned it on the edge of my seat. MSH could have bucked the trend this year and seized the chance to pursue a different course. I mean, when our OTP go on honeymoon, we expect some cute moments and all that, but instead we got this bratty bitch who insult our heroine at every chance she got for no reason at all. While poor Young-mi was definitely hit over the head, I think it was someone choking her that actually caused her death. While I am enjoying this show, I am a little bummed that there isn’t more about the murder investigation. She’s also got some strong supporters, like GM Lee (however shady he may be), Sung Gyum (ditto on the shady bit), and Eun Joo.
On the one hand, it was great how breezily Hae Young announced to everyone that he and Sang Hyo were married 7 years ago. When he and Young mi were arguing about her trip abroad, he seemed like he resented her fortune.
The political claws get sharpened out in the open, and in a fantastic move, once the prince’s hands are tied, we get to see what the princess is made of.
But even more shocking is the fact that the king has ordered them to proceed with the investigation knowing that this means Sun will have to stand trial. She pleads with him to stop the trial from happening, but even as she’s talking, the court ministers are filing past them to begin the interrogation. Yeongjo asks very straightforward questions about who Shadow was and why Sun went to his house the night he discovered the body.
Yeongjo prods him for an answer, so Sun says truthfully that he went looking for the person who ordered Heung-bok and Jung-woon’s murders. Yeongjo stands up and asks defensively what possible motive Prime Minister Kim could have for those murders. He says that the motive is right here—keeping the conspiracy documented in these pages a secret.
Father and son lock eyes, and Sun’s eyes well up with tears to see his father so broken.
Yeongjo looks pointedly at Teacher Park (ah, is he hurting him by going after Sun?), while Sun glares daggers at Prime Minister Kim. The ministers stand frozen in their places, wondering what on earth they’re supposed to do.
Ha, has he just entrusted the murderer to prove that the man he framed for his own crimes is innocent? She remembers the girl who acted strangely while digging through a dresser, and when they go to search her quarters, she’s gone.
He takes them off and comes back out to hand them over, and finds Hyegyeong waiting to receive them. We see Prime Minister Kim creating the document thirty years in the past, and getting his Noron co-conspirators to sign it. He wonders who the others are, and if the new king they intended to place on the throne is his father. Hyegyeong fumes to hear that Yeongjo went to see his concubine Lady Moon, and worries about what Lady Moon will do to further undermine his relationship with Sun. Ji-dam is antsy to go see Chul-joo herself, but Dad insists she stay put (at Advisor Chae’s house, their latest hideout) while he checks on Chul-joo. Eunuch Jang begs for mercy, so Hyegyeong tells him he can live if he tells her everything that’s been going on and how Sun ended up in prison.
Ruh-roh, I really don’t think this is the way you want to be framing the story for the princess. Mu is slowly bleeding Chul-joo out with shallow cuts, and asks why he sensed humaneness in Chul-joo’s hand as they fought one another. Chul-joo winces from the pain, but it does get Mu out of the room for a while, and it gives him a chance to try and get to the tools that are just out of reach. And when he argues that the prince has been unfairly imprisoned, the Soron simply say that he’s there ahead of schedule, since neither Yeongjo nor Sun have the right to the throne, the way they see it.
Teacher Park pleads with him not to repeat the bloodshed that they faced in the past, and asks him to keep a lid on his hasty colleagues. Teacher Park’s face goes white to hear Yeongjo already treating this unborn child as his future heir apparent, and Hyegyeong panics when she hears the same news. Yeongjo just does what he does best and plays mind-games with him, countering that Park is the one who made him do this: “Why did you force my hand? Chae demands some answers about what Park knows, worried that if Ji-dam dies, Sun will never forgive himself and just break. Kim tells him that nothing in life is free, but Park threatens to make the contents of the document public to the entire nation if he doesn’t comply. He says it’s time to clear his path out of here, and hands Advisor Chae the page of the maengui that contains all the signatures. Sun tells him to use whatever means necessary to search these men and their surroundings—one of them will have Ji-dam. Court Lady Choi thinks that maybe this isn’t a terrible development, since Ji-dam might be the only way to get Sun out of jail. Her father protests that Minister Min is a powerful man and bringing his son here to testify might bring calamity upon all of them, but she’s determined to see this through.

Hyegyeong then kneels in the king’s courtyard to plead for a retrial, accompanied by their tiny son who wails appropriately just as his father was taught to do. Yeongjo covers his ears to drown out their cries, annoyed that his grandson and daughter-in-law are adding to his troubles, but Hyegyeong continues, prepared to do this all night. Sun is more alarmed than anyone that Hyegyeong intends to put Ji-dam before the court as a witness, and has dragged their tiny son out there to plead his case before the king.
Advisor Chae refuses to back down this time, because it’s the only way to get the prince out of jail. I’m glad for his sake that Sun is still such a hopeful idealist, because you get the sense that his teacher might break otherwise. This show has a tendency to bombard us with far too many players and a constellation of related conflicts, rather than one focused problem that hurtles everyone towards the same narrative cliff; the latest episodes have done a much better job of pulling all the loose strands tightly into one new problem that drives everyone each hour, and it feels like the pace is picking up a result.
So it was with relief that I found the first episode light and funny, with a bustling pace and solid comic acting from the cast. Despite the creds, I was cautious of writer Kim Eun-sook, because I have found her writing a little too glib and soulless for my liking in the past. This song is sung by Yoon Sang-hyun’s character and gets a fair bit of play in this episode. He runs the LOEL department store, where employees grumble behind his back at his schedule; he only comes to the office two days a week. Ra-im is a hard-working stuntwoman for action movies, and since most of her colleagues at the action school are men, most of the time she acts like one of the guys.
Oska’s real name is CHOI WOO-YOUNG, and as part of his petty rivalry, Joo-won chooses to call him by that name rather than Oska.
She’s a well-educated CF director, armed with a prestigious family background and the snobby, entitled attitude to match. Chatting in the fancy VIP lounge of his department store with one of her spineless toadies, she’s hardly set down by his dismissal at all.
Seul berates the waitress for being lax with their strict VIP policy and snatches her nametag to have her reported. She’s a friend of the waitress and, as a former employee, was let through to the lounge. She takes off on bike after the mugger (who jumped into a car), going through a series of BMX-style stunts like jumping stairs and rails.
For instance, someone compliments her on a job well done, and she accepts it with pleasure, one foot tucked behind the other in a little-girl pose of aw-shucks bashfulness. So I totally awwed when Ra-im ends up bringing Jong-soo with the extra ticket, even though he told her to bring a friend.
Currently, he’s trying to find a director for his new music video, but nobody will work with him because of his diva reputation.
They’re thrown off-balance, and Ra-im lurches forward to grab her, but they both crash into a pile of props. But rather than cause trouble, she covers up with a jacket and apologizes for the accident. He can’t go because he’s about to record an appearance on Chocolate (SBS call-out!
Joo-won gets to the set and asks for the actress Chae-rin, and is directed toward Ra-im instead, since they’re dressed the same.
On the other hand, Ra-im thinks to the first time she actually DID meet Oska, in a hotel for a press junket. He smirks because it sounds like a flowery euphemism, and his eyes widen at her answer: She gets paid extra for outdoor and rural appearances, since rooftops and forests are all the rage right now. He’s able to urge her into silence by threatening further scandal, and that takes care of that. And when she sways in dizziness, he’s too slow to catch her because Joo-won gets to her first. He starts in on his usual bickering with Joo-won, until he takes notice of the pretty woman standing with him and reverts to glib words, saying that he recognizes her eyes. Oska smiles at her in full charm mode, while Joo-won gapes as though to grumble, You have gotta be kidding me.
I mean I remember they were selling it as a melodramatic fantasy(which is one of the reasons why I didnt think much about the show haha) but reading the recaps it seems to be more of a romantic comedy(with future fantasy elements).
I was watching with chinese subs, but even with those they talked really fast and I didn’t really get some parts, but your recap totally cleared things up! Not that I’m one to complain about that, since my melodrama tolerance is lower than most.
There could be some serious angst because Ji Sung keeps thinks that HJE is responsible for his girlfriend’s death. Since I saw that before 49 days, I just pretended he was a different actor, cause yep, during that show I too wanted to punch him. Like her fairytale has been shattered and anything that resembles it she’ll be wary of and doubtful of. If so, I will wonder if that stint in prison included a lobotomy… or that drama staple, amnesia. Not a fan of melo specially if it has something to do with, you know, revenge, where the hero is trying to take revenge on a man and falls for his daughter ? On the one hand, the premise sounds somewhat, dare I say it, boring, and potentially paint-by-number. Just reading the premise to Nice Guy turned me off so completely, though, that I didn’t even consider giving it a gander. Looks like the star-studded combo of Hyun Bin and Ha Ji-won was enough to get it sold on name recognition alone. Lately there’ve been a string of (arguably) lousy ones like Heading To The Ground, Take Care Of Young Lady . I mean, I can already imagine the humor they’ll be giving us with this very good premise. Went to see both Thirst and The Good the Bad and the Weird at a film festival a few months back. It will be held at the Children’s Park Dome Art Hall on January 15, and will feature performances by artists Baek Ji-young and 4Men, who are both on the soundtrack, as well as actors Yoon Sang-hyun and even Hyun Bin. The second CD (parts 3 and 4) recorded nearly 30,000 pre-orders as soon as its release date, January 3, was announced.
Concert organizers countered by saying the quality of the show will be greater than ordinary pop concerts. Instead of paying for extras to stage a concert for the episode, get fans to pay to be in the concert.
Eun-joo just tells her to get it together… and drops her into a post-wedding interview with journalists and a relaxed-looking Hae-young. She, however, is more taken aback to see Sang-hyo there, and Hae-young tells her plainly that Sang-hyo married him.
He comes up behind her and she leaps into his arms — and so his little trick pays off, aww. Then there are the words Hae-young overheard Hwang say that night, about talking to her son. If I were to put my finger on it, I would say he’s not really childish so much as he is boyish, and the same goes for Sang-hyo.
That quality about her is what makes her relationship with both men so equal, but also really good at her job. That nighttime scene, where the camera pans out and suddenly shows us Soo-ah alone on the enormous bed while Sang-hyo is on the floor (compared to the boys side-by-side in matching sleeping bags), encapsulates everything that is wrong with Soo-ah’s worldview. A laryngeal injury would require impact at the front of her neck, and the replay specifically showed the impact was on the back of her head. That puts Cha and Simon on the list for sure, but there may be others who slipped out and came back, so Gi-chul and GM Lee remain suspect.
I wish Haeyoung could have kicked her out of the room, but perhaps that would have left no room for the outdoor camping equipment PPL. But I was incredulous that everyone proceeded with the wedding while not knowing whether Sang Hyo would turn up to the wedding or not. GM lee seems more likely, but it would be far more interesting if the criminal was someone unexpected.
The difference in their physical sizes makes the power disparity feel particularly sardonic. Her father warns her to return to her quarters since it isn’t her place to be here, and falls in line with the other officials. She takes his clothes silently and looks like she’s on the verge of tears the whole time, but holds them back.
What did I do wrong?!” He turns from anger to laughter to anguish in a matter of seconds, as he stands there looking up at his brother, as if waiting for an answer.
He orders Chae to look into Eastside boss Chul-joo’s whereabouts to figure out exactly what he and Teacher Park were up to. But Sun assures him that what Park did was in service of uncovering the truth, and that if his teacher can work to make sure that innocent lives were not lost in vain, then he can stand to spend some time in jail to do his part.
The mayor says he didn’t hand over the evidence that would be bad for Park, and takes out the piece of cloth that was found at the crime scene. The genius part, of course, is that it’s totally effective because Teacher Park loves the prince. Park cries that even a gangster is one of the king’s people, and Yeongjo agrees but says small sacrifices are needed in order to do big things. Ji-dam tells her about Heung-bok’s murder, and when Hyegyeong asks if she can testify to those facts in court, Ji-dam agrees without hesitation. She points out that Sun himself was not much older when he began to lie prostrate before the king, which… is true, but that was totally messed up. I really want to see Sun being a father too, whether good or bad, because it just adds another layer of depth to his sad and twisted dynamic with his father. It probably has a lot to do with putting our hero in mortal danger and threatening to take away his crown, but thankfully there’s no shortage of that conflict where royals are concerned.
Secret Garden is full of her trademark super-speed banter, but this time I was swept up in the zippiness because the characters are so engaging. Seul is a snob of the worst order, already fancying herself his wife, and casts a derisive eye around her at all the other social-climbing wannabes in the lounge.
How nice of the drama to make it extra-stunningly clear that we are meant to hate her, just in case the previous scenes were keeping you on the fence. Also interesting is how Jong-soo clearly sees her very much as a woman and treats her as such, although she’s oblivious.
He insists on taking the escalator because he’d rather be called haughty than the truth of his fear being known. Joo-won asks how much money she usually takes, meaning as payoff, because Chae-rin is demanding money as settlement. She dresses casually and doesn’t put an effort into looking feminine, but she does seem wistful when she overhears the director telling Chae-rin that all she has to do is look pretty. I didn’t have much interest after not being able to understand some of it, but after this, I totally want to watch tomorrows episode.
That’s the setup behind the stills down below, where the leads meet for the first time in the police station, and Ji Sung believes that Hwang Jung-eum killed the woman he loved. You need excellent performers for a melo, it’s a difficult piece with usually sensitive matters thrown.
If I do decide to peak at this one, I’ll probably pick it up starting with her release from prison. The concert runs from 8 to 10 pm, after which the roughly 2,000 attendees will be able to watch the 10 pm broadcast live.
I remember Kim Nam Gil sang a song for Queen SeonDeok OST and it turned out that he had a great voice and could sing really well.
Sigh if all concerts in australia were $90, I’d be attending a hell of a lot of concerts. She feels sorry for herself, and reflects that you can’t make your heart do what you want it to do.
Sung-gyum himself happens to be approaching right then — and shocked, Sang-hyo hides behind the reception desk until he passes.
It comes out most clearly when you compare how different his interactions with Sang-hyo are compared with Soo-ah, when they are together: With Sang-hyo, his face and voice noticeably soften. With the possibility of collaborators, that also brings in Kyung-hee and Sung-gyum particularly — but also just about everyone else. Too bad Namgung Min was cast as the 2nd lead instead of the 1st and his character Jo Sung-Gyeom will be friend zoned (at best) and won’t ended up with Nam Sang-Hyo. Sun comes out of his reverie and decides to hold his tongue, and replies that he can’t give an answer. I can see their parenting being a source of strife with his wife too, since Hyegyeong is all about the tough love and scary discipline.
Yeongjo is the one who said to Sun that he might be his father by blood but Teacher Park was his father in heart, and it’s frightening how easily he uses that truth to his advantage when it serves his purposes. She also drops in a number of pop-culture references, some of which involve the stars of her own previous dramas, which are fun to spot. Chae-rin threatens to reveal their relationship to the reporters who are here to cover the film. In fact, his whole persona has been crafted to cover up his weaknesses, like his refusal to come to the office more. And when she balks, he responds that he doesn’t need a reason to take her home other than wanting to do it.
It sounds a lot like Nice Guy, but Nice Guy was compulsively watchable, so it’s not a bad association. I have a limited tolerance for melo, so I’ll have to be in the correct state of mind to surrender to this one.
Unless I just dont know my genre, I could’ve actually been watching one without recognizing it as such. Now, six years later, Song has set up his own investigative agency, and happens upon a face-to-face encounter with Kang.
I was very excited about Secret Garden in the first few episodes, but somewhere along in the series ( I think after the body swap) it lost its lustre.
After I started watching Secret Garden, I found out that she used to sing on stage and released 1 or 2 albums a few years ago. While it could be the simple fear of being hurt again, the question still remains: What hurt her so much to begin with? Since her prints are on the candlestick (and she clearly has some connection to Young-mi from that night), if she struck her, I would guess someone else finished her off.
Hyegyeong’s father sends his officers out to capture Officer Min, and the Noron camp panics.
But the truly maddening thing is that he shows bits of remorse, and it feels like deep down, he wants nothing more than for Sun to survive this so that he can get rid of the goddamned maengui and rule peacefully as a just and fair king, and pass that kingdom down to his only son. I really hope we get some development between Sun and Hyegyeong in the wake of this episode too, because he’s a fool if he lets her brain and her guts of steel go wasted, especially when she already loves him.
The true complication, of course, is when the hero starts to fall for the woman he swore to tear down in revenge. I can be had, however, if it’s well written, has compelling characters, and lots of sexual chemistry. My love for good dramatic angst will make me watch always hoping things will make sense even if they keep defying logic all the time. Hyun Bin is sooo funny and tomorrow’s episode will surely be even funnier based from the montage at the end.

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